We had a succesfull 30 player matchplay tournament yesterday, but we had two situations regarding ruling: one situation that got a bit heated between a player and the tournament directors (me and a couple more) as he thought we did not follow the ifpa/papa rules correctly as we are trying to do and that our ruling was wrong. The other was more related to player order. It would be great to get some input from other professional players and tournament directors here, just for future reference.
First the heated one:
This happened on Flintstones, a four player group and it was ball 2, player 4.
I was called over and the player had cradled a ball on his flipper, and said that he had attempted to build up the jackpot value multiple times in multiball by shooting the balls into the machine, but claimed that the jackpot value did not build ie that the switches in the machine did not register. After reading the rules and discussing with the two other directors, we ruled that he should play on and we would watch the other players on ball 3. If it happened again, we would rule it as a major malfunction. But, the next player got the ball into the machine, the value started building up although maybe a little slower than usual. We let the ruling stand and after the game ended the affected player read up the rules and said that this should have been ruled as a major malfunction, referring to section 2 in the rules " A minor malfunction is any incident without external cause (…) without providing any player a significant advantage over others". He claimed that he not getting the jackpot value built up while other got it, gave the other players who got to build up the jackpot a significant advantage over him".
While I pointed to the section below that rule, which said “A minor malfunction that occurs repeatedly, to the extent that it is markedly affecting play of the machine, may be considered a major malfunction at the sole discretion of tournament officials.” since it only occured once, we treated it as a minor malfunction.
Was this a correct ruling by us directors? Could we have handled it in a better way?
The second: In one group, a player forgot his playing order and asked his group if it was his turn now. Another player in the group said “yes its your turn”, and he started playing but then they discovered it was not his turn after all. Is this alwaus purely the players responsibility to know when he is up and therefore he should be DQ’d, or does the other player who unintentionally give the wrong answer get a punishment, or both?
Thanks for all input, trying to become a better and fair tournament director