General Rules & Help

Please familiarise yourself with the following UW5 specific rules. Rules can be fun too, right?

At the correct time (see When can I make a challenge?), choose the 'make a challenge' option from the ladder page (note this link is not displayed when you can not make a challenge).

Your team will then be queued to make a challenge (see How does the queue work?). If it is not currently your turn, the time of your challenge slot will be displayed. You must refresh/reload/F5/whatever the page at that time to make a challenge. When it is your turn, the teams you may challenge (see Which teams can I challenge?) are listed in the ladder.

To challenge a team ...

  1. Select the team then
    • If you booked your own pitch, fill in the location and time details
    • Or to use a prebooked slot, select 'Let me choose from prebooked slots'

    Matches will only be recognised if played between 9am and 7pm. No games are to be played on Sundays. No games outside of term time.

  2. click 'Proceed with challenge'
  3. If applicable, you will need to select a vacant prebooked slot, then click 'Proceed with challenge' again.
  4. The details of your challenge will be checked and if your proposed challenge is valid, confirm the details and your challenge will be put to the opposition.

Challenges must be made between 14:00 and 21:00 on a Sunday, for fixtures to be played between Tuesday and Saturday (inclusive) of the same week.

In addition, teams who didn't lose or forfeit their previous challenge will be permitted to make a challenge from 11:00 on a Sunday.

Teams that are in your ladder, do not already have a challenge are not too high in the ladder places ahead of you (see table below). We have also introduced the rule that you may only challenge teams above you.

Your position in ladder Number of places ahead that you can challenge
1 - 5 2
6 - 11 3
12 - 18 4
19 - 28 6
29+ 7

If your team has been challenged the details of the game will be shown on the ladder page. Teams can only have one ladder game per week so if you have already been challenged you will not be able to make a challenge for that week.

If your team has been challenged the ladder page will give you the option to confirm whether you will be attending the challenge. It is common courtesy to let your opponents know whether you will be attending a game but as many teams have not bothered to do this in the past it is now a requirement that teams must confirm through the web site that they will be attending a challenge at least 12 hours before the game is due to take place. Teams that do not do this forfeit the game.

Even if your team cannot attend a challenge it is still expected that you indicate this on the web site so your opposition can cancel their pitch booking.

Any member of a team can confirm whether the team will be attending a challenge but please note this cannot be changed once it has been entered so you are advised to check with your team before entering this information. If you enter the incorrect option do NOT email the exec but contact your opposition directly.

We decided to write a queuing system because unlike with the notice board, the online challenge system would allow concurrent challenges to be made; in the time it takes from the ladder page loading to you clicking 'Proceed with challenge', a team may challenge you or the team you are challenging may make a challenge or be challenged themselves etc. In each of the aforementioned cases your proposed challenge would not be allowed.

The basic facts it will help you to know are

  • You are queuing for your team; there is no benefit at all from multiple people from your team queuing.
  • There is a separate queue for each ladder.
  • If there is no one else queueing, you get through straight away.
  • Queuing starts at the same time challenges open, but trying to cheat the queue by repeatedly reloading the challenge page before this time will guarantee you don't get into the queue until a few others have. This is to prevent our server being DDOSed by a hundred or so eager challengers.
  • If you miss your slot, tough, you are re-queued (possibly for a later time). It is your responsibility to reload the challenge page at the specified time
  • The absolutely maximum time you will have to wait during the winners' bounty is under an hour. This would be if everyone eligible joined the queue at roughly the same time, but you were last by a fraction of a second (unlikely).

A number of reasons exist why you may not currently be eligible to challenge any team. Common reasons are

  • you have qualified for another competition such as The Champions League or Plate Compeition
  • your team does not have the minimum number of players and hence is not in the competition (for 2004-2005, we are relaxing this restriction)
  • ladder challenges are currently closed, or you are trying to challenge during the winners' bounty, but you were not victorious last week.
  • you are already in a ladder challenge for this week
  • you have been suspended for your conduct on the pitch1

1this will only be in very rare circumstances where it is felt your conduct has a negative impact on the enjoyment of the game.

The reference time the system uses is displayed clearly on the homepage.

The rules are stipulated, ultimately, to increase the overall enjoyment of the game for all. Please do your best to keep to the rules wherever reasonably possible, but see the note below.

  1. A playing team will consist of 5 players, one of whom will be the goalkeeper, while a squad of up to 10 players can be chosen for any match.
  2. Unlimited substitutions can be made at any time during the match, but the player entering must wait until the player he is replacing has left the pitch.
  3. A match will consist of two halves of 20 minutes, changing ends at half-time. All games must finish promptly once the hour that has been booked is up, to allow other users on to the pitch.
  4. An outfield player may change places with the goalkeeper during any stoppage as long as this is made clear to the opposition.
  5. Play shall be commenced by a conventional kick-off, which will also restart play after a goal has been scored.
  6. A goalkeeper may pick up a ball that has been passed back to him by one of his own players. However, he may not touch a ball that has been returned to him directly. I.e. a defender who has received the ball from his own keeper may not pass the ball back to him, or else a direct free kick will be awarded from the position the defender was standing.
  7. Goalkeepers must play the ball within 6 seconds of having received it.
  8. At free kicks, the opposition must be at least 2m from the ball. All free kicks are direct.
  9. You may not play the same team in successive weeks.
  10. If a team fails to turn up then they automatically forfeit.
  11. If your team has been challenged then please indicate this on the website to show that you are aware of the match and can play. Teams must confirm through the website that they will be attending a challenge at least 12 hours before the game is due to take place, otherwise they forfeit the game (this result must still be confirmed on the web site after the time of the game).
  12. All challenges must be accepted; there is no excuse for not turning up. Having lectures is not an excuse for not playing.
  13. If the challenging team wins then ladder positions are switched. A draw or defeat will not affect the ladder.
  14. Cup matches ending in a draw will be decided with a penalty shoot-out, with 5 kicks being taken by each team, and then sudden death if needed. All kickers may be players who were on the bench at the time of the game's end.
  15. Any disputes should be taken up with the Exec, whose decision is final.

Small alterations

Competing captains may choose to play by a slightly different set of rules if they agree upon it before the game. If there is any argument about whose rules to play by, however, then these default rules must be used.

  1. There are no boundaries, when the ball hits any wall or ceiling it is still in play.
  2. Only goalkeepers can touch the ball in the penalty area - if defenders touch the ball in the penalty area a penalty is awarded.
  3. Goalkeepers are allowed outside of the penalty area.
  1. A ball played out of bounds restarts with a kick-in, unless the ball is played out over the goal line. In this case either a corner is awarded or the goalkeeper restarts with the ball.
  2. Due to there being no obvious markings for areas on outdoor pitches, it will be left to the decision of the competing captains as to whether players are allowed in the area, keepers are allowed out, size of the area etc.