Björne´s Column

BJÖRNE: Change the regulations on partner changes in the world padel now


Another partner break-up after far too short a time together. It is time to create a transfer window or let the pair rankings control who plays in the Master Final. It would raise the rivalry between pairs and the excitement of today's padel, writes Padel Alto's Filip Björne. 

Sometimes what looks like a long-term project ends after just one or two tournaments. Padel is a team sport, and how are supporters supposed to find a favorite couple if players change partner after every other tournament? 

How do you build hype around rival matches? 

I am often asked: "Who is that player playing with now"? How are padel supporters even supposed to know who their favorite player is playing with? I understand that those who follow padel fairly well and like to watch the World Padel Tour, Premier Padel, and the APT tournaments but do not work with it daily do not keep up with all the changes in the circuit.

It's time to introduce rules around these changes.

”As it should be in team sports”

I suggest two proposals that would reduce the swaps and thus have more continuity in pairing, hype the rivalry between pairs and lift the sport.

The first suggestion is to introduce a transfer window. 

Between these given dates, it is okay to change partner. If the play doesn't work for you and your partner, it is up to you and your team to reverse that trend. Just as it should be in team sports. 

Until the transfer window opens, you are free to negotiate with another partner. Preferably this window would be open during the pre-season and in the summer break as the schedule is now. 

I know. One large problem with this solution is that players can get injured, and you have to find a way to solve this. 

The other suggestion is to redo the qualification for the Master's Final. Going from the individual ranking system to the pair ranking, which also Lucho Capra suggested in a recent interview with Padel Alto. It would avoid the number of partner changes during the season.

”Creating rivalry”

Today, changing partners can be an advantage for one part as the top 16 ranked individuals go to the Master Final. With this new suggestion, a partner change would be a major loss because the Master Finals are likely to be missed for both parts.

Of course, you should be able to change partners and teams you are working with. As in all team sports, you should have the chance to change the environment. But not as soon as you get the slightest setback. And not after two or even one single tournament together.  

Ultimately, supporters want to find a favorite team. Ultimately, you want to see matches between two great rival teams. How do we get that? The first way is through continuity — the second by referring back in time to major historical matches between the pairs. 

Read the latest break-ups and new partnerships in our new Silly Season blog. 

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