ISL Season 3 Plans Include Six Matches for November Playoffs

One week after announcing the location of the season 3 play-offs in Eindhoven, Netherlands, the International Swimming League has confirmed six matches will be contested during the November playoff season.

As previously announced, the 10-match regular season competition this year will run from August 26-September 26 in Naples, Italy. An additional 11th match will be contested on September 29-30, where the top two teams from the seventh to 10th-ranked teams will have an opportunity to join the top six teams in the playoffs. The top six teams at the conclusion of the regular season will automatically advance to the playoffs.

*In the event of a tie between two or more teams for any of the top two qualifying playoff spots during Match #11, the mixed 4×50 medley relay will be utilized as a tie-breaker.

There will be four pairs matched up among the eight qualifying teams during the playoffs. The first four teams will start off each pairing while two draws will be performed to determine the remaining teams for each respective pair. The winning draw between 7th- and 8th-place teams will compete with Pair 1 while the winning draw among the 5th- and 6th-place teams will compete with Pair 3. The other teams will swim with either Pair 2 or Pair 4, respectively.

  • Pair 1: 1st team & 7th/8th team (winner of draw #1)
  • Pair 2: 2nd team & 7th/8th team (other team of draw #1)
  • Pair 3: 3rd team & 5th/6th team (winner of draw #2)
  • Pair 4: 4th team & 5th/6th team (other team of draw #2)

Each of the eight teams will compete three times throughout the six matches. Pair 4 will have back-to-back playoffs between Match 2 and Match 3 while Pair 3 will have a double-header between Match 4 and Match 5. Pairs 1 and 2 will not have to stress about two consecutive matches for this playoff season.

The dates for each ISL season 3 playoff match have been solidified. The first two matches will span November 11-14, the middle two matches are scheduled for November 18-21, and the remaining two matches will take place November 25-28.

Season 3 Playoff Matches

  • Match 1 (Nov 11-12): Pair 1 vs Pair 2
  • Match 2 (Nov 13-14): Pair 3 vs Pair 4
  • Match 3 (Nov 18-19): Pair 1 vs Pair 4
  • Match 4 (Nov 20-21): Pair 2 vs Pair 3
  • Match 5 (Nov 25-26): Pair 1 vs Pair 3
  • Match 6 (Nov 27-28): Pair 2 vs Pair 4

Club scoring during playoffs will reset, meaning regular season rankings will not carry over into playoff season. At the conclusion of the playoff season, the top four teams will advance to the Grand Final. If there is a tie in the cumulative club rankings either at the end of playoffs or the regular season, a series of tie-breakers will be used to determine the qualifying team in lieu of a medley relay.

  • There are a possible four tie-breakers to go through, with the first tie-breaker the most likely to determine a winner while the fourth and fifth act as a last case-scenario.
  • Priority: if not i, then ii; if not i or ii, then iii; if not i or ii or iii, then iv
    • i: Result between the teams; total of club scoring points in matches where these teams participated together. If such a tie-breaker is for qualification towards the Final, then Regular Season (the 10 matches, not the 11th Match) is taken into account as well.
    • ii: Total number of event wins in the relevant phase of the season (individual and relay swims).
    • iii: Total match points from all matches in the relevant phase of the season.
    • iv: If the tie cannot be broken by the above, then there will be a draw to determine the team to qualify.

The season 3 Grand Final is scheduled for January 2022. During season 1, the final took place less than a month after the American/European derbies while the coronavirus-impacted season 2 final was contested almost immediately following the semifinals.

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About Nick Pecoraro

Nick Pecoraro

Nick Pecoraro started swimming at age 11, instantly becoming drawn to the sport. He was a breaststroker and IMer when competing. After joining SwimSwam, the site has become an outlet for him to research and learn about competitive swimming and experience the sport through a new lenses. He graduated in …

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