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Competitions & League FAQs

Updated 10/9/20

The new guidance enables local leagues to restart. It is not possible, under current Government guidance, to reintroduce tournament play in its traditional form or even a small scale version. However, we are working to develop alternative formats that would allow competitive play through tournaments and will publish guidance and details when available

We have taken the following action so far regarding national organised activity:


  • All junior Badminton England sanctioned circuit tournaments are on hold for entry. We are reviewing how these can be restarted under the new guidance.
  • The Junior English National Championships are being reviewed as to whether they can be held on the planned dates in 2020 or postponed to a new date in early 2021 (under the same age groups).
  • The Junior Inter County Tournament (U18 ICT) 2020 is cancelled and cannot be rearranged. Planning is now moving forward for the U18 ICT 2021.
  • The All England Junior International Championships in July at University of Birmingham is cancelled. Planning is now moving forward to host this event in 2021.
  • The National Schools Championships for 2019/20 was cancelled, Entries are now open for 2020/21 to take part in the competition which will start in January 2021, please click here to enter your school

Senior County Championships

 The 2019-20 season will finally be drawn to a close.

 Whilst we have been hopeful and plans were in place to run the final weekend in November, unfortunately we have had to cancel these under current government guidance and wider concerns:

  • There will no longer be any expected easing of guidance to enable this event to run
  • Strong possibility that not all venues will be able to take place due to local lockdowns or venues closure.
  • Travel and accommodation – it is not currently recommended to travel/stay with people outside of your household or support bubble and therefore this will place increased pressure on teams travelling and staying overnight for matches.

We turn our attention now towards deciding the most suitable outcome for the 2019-20 season and looking ahead to the 2020-21 season.

We are realistic that the current format may not be possible for some time, therefore we need to be pragmatic and look at how we ensure the continuation of the Championships and competitive county matches for players up and down the country next season. We will be consulting closely with County Badminton Associations over the coming weeks and provide a further update on our next steps in November.


  • All masters Badminton England sanctioned circuit tournaments are on hold for entry. We are reviewing how these can be restarted under the new guidance.
  • The All England Masters April 2020 is cancelled and cannot be rearranged. Planning is now moving forward for the All England Masters 2021.
  • The Masters English Nationals has been rearranged from 29 November -1 December 2020 to 29-31 January 2021.
  • The Masters County Championships - with no promotion or relegation in this Championships all remaining fixtures, play-offs and finals in 2019/20 were cancelled, and the season was closed as it stood. Planning is in place for 2020/21 to restart under new guidance.

Q: Will players be refunded from competitions if they are cancelled? 

A: Yes. If a tournament is cancelled, then all players will receive a full refund automatically.


Q: How are Badminton England Rankings affected? 

A: Badminton England suspended all national sanctioned competition in March 20. The March rankings have been updated and published to reflect the latest badminton activity that took place up until Friday 20th March.  

The ranking system is based on a rolling 12 months of results and published monthly. However due to the period of inactivity the rankings will be frozen and restarted from April 2019. Once the period of suspension is lifted, they will be modified such that the calculation continues to reflect 12 months of active results. 

Eg. If play resumes in August, the August rankings will be run from April 2019 – August 2020. They will continue to run such that the last 12 months of active competition are included. 

Q: How are Badminton England Grading affected? 

A: Badminton England player grades are reviewed every 4 months. The last full grading period was Friday 31st January 2020, and the following grading period originally planned for 29th May was only partially completed.

There has been a significant length of time since the last badminton was played in March, therefore the grading will not be rolled over into the restart of the national circuit. Results from February and March will be treated in the following way:

  • Players that achieved an upgrade result from February and March will be upgraded, as they have achieved 80% or higher win/loss ratio with a minimum of 4 qualifying matches.
  • Players that had 3 win and 0 (zero) losses from February and March will be upgraded, as they have shown they are beating players consistently at their level and higher and only one win short of an automatic upgrade – it is likely they would have been able to achieve an upgrade over the period.
  • Players can appeal based on the last four months of actual tournament results - 30th November 2019 to 27th March 2020. This is a four-month window like any other grading run. If players can prove they have met the upgrade criteria within this period (80% or higher win/loss ratio with a minimum 4 qualifying matches) they will be upgraded.
  • There will be no downgrades for the results in February and March, unless requested by appeal from a player.

Q: How should leagues finish their seasons? 

A: There is no formal guidance as each league governs their own terms and regulations.

All sports leagues locally, nationally and internationally will need to make decisions based on their particular circumstances and predicated mainly on the current standing position of the league and any wider implications. 

  • 33 of 47 leagues surveyed concluded their 20192-20 season:
    • 13 ended the season and finalised the league tables (considering not played fixtures in some way)
    • 10 ended the season and finalised league tables (ignoring not played fixtures)
    • 5 voided the season
    • 3 had committees who decided the final standings
    • 2 extended indefinitely
  • 14 of 47 leagues surveyed waited to make a decision once it is known when matches can restart.

Q: What should leagues consider ahead of restarting?

  • Facility availability – the league will need to communicate with its clubs to understand challenges to arranging fixtures.
  • Clubs may be experiencing a drop-off in players and therefore teams in the league.
  • Push the start date back if necessary and reduce number of matches to fit into timescales. Please see Club & Competition for further information on how to play league matches

Q: Are teams fixed to a particular side of the court/s (no swapping sides)?

A: When playing league matches each team should be allocated one side of the court/hall and play from that side for the duration of the match, i.e., teams pick an ‘end’ and there is no changing of end between games/sets/ rubbers.

  • Match/league organisers may want to introduce a ruling to direct how sides are allocated, such as ‘away team chooses end’.
  • Players from different groups should not share the same side of the net at the same time, even during warm-ups. It may be necessary to warm-up with the opposition, unless you can allocate different courts or times to warm-up.

If running a casual club session, each group should be allocated to a court and groups should not change court throughout the session. If your running a match play club night, you should follow above guidance around league matches.

Q: How do you warm up for matches with your partner?

A: Players from different groups should not share the same the side of the net at the same time, even during warm-ups. It may be necessary to warm-up with the opposition, unless you can allocate different courts or times to warm-up.