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A numerical study of designs for sporting contests

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  • Scarf, Philip
  • Yusof, Muhammad Mat
  • Bilbao, Mark
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    Abstract

    Operational Research may be used to compare different designs for a sporting contest or tournament. This paper considers a methodology for this purpose. We propose a number of tournament metrics that can be used to measure the success of a sporting contest or tournament, and describe how these metrics may be evaluated for a particular tournament design. Knowledge of these measures can then be used to compare competing designs, such as round-robin, pure knockout and hybrids of these designs. We show, for example, how the design of the tournament influences the outcome uncertainty of the tournament and the number of unimportant matches within the tournament. In this way, where new designs are proposed, the implications of these designs may be explored within a modelling paradigm. In football (soccer), the UEFA Champions League has adopted a number of designs over its 50 year history; the design of the tournament has been modified principally in response to the changing demands of national league football and television - the paper uses this particular tournament to illustrate the methodology.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Journal of Operational Research.

    Volume (Year): 198 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 1 (October)
    Pages: 190-198

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:ejores:v:198:y:2009:i:1:p:190-198

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eor

    Related research

    Keywords: OR in sport Sports tournaments Simulation Competitive balance;

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    Cited by:
    1. P Dorian Owen & Nicholas King, 2013. "Competitive Balance Measures in Sports Leagues: The Effects of Variation in Season Length," NCER Working Paper Series 92, National Centre for Econometric Research.
    2. Geenens, Gery, 2014. "On the decisiveness of a game in a tournament," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 232(1), pages 156-168.
    3. Wright, Mike, 2014. "OR analysis of sporting rules – A survey," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 232(1), pages 1-8.
    4. Lahvicka, Jiri, 2013. "Impact of playoffs on seasonal uncertainty in Czech ice hockey Extraliga," MPRA Paper 44608, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. repec:qut:auncer:2013_04 is not listed on IDEAS

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