English Subbuteo Association

Tournament Regulations



The ESA does not want to be too restrictive in our regulations, but in order to provide a certain standard of events that are ESA endorsed, we have to have a set of regulations to govern our events.

It must be stated that all the events that are ESA endorsed, are ‘owned’ by the ESA. This means that these events are granted to organisers by the ESA, who retain the right to remove this privilege or re-allocate the event to another organiser.

Membership of ESA

Only players who are members of ESA will be allowed to play in ESA events (unless the player is registered with another national association). Membership is possible on the ESA website and players can join ESA on the day.

Tournament Levy

All FISTF events must pay a levy to FISTF.


It is up to the tournament organiser to decide the costs to each player at his tournament. However, we would hope that a maximum of £10 is charged, and in many cases the fee will be below that figure. It is down to the organiser to ensure that all levies are paid to ESA (and FISTF where appropriate), and that the event does not run at a loss.


Venues should be well lit and roomy enough for the event. Pitches should, where possible, be the San Siro pitches. However, other good quality pitches are allowed. The venue should have parking if possible and have access to shops. The organiser is allowed to provide food, (free or at cost) to the players and this can be a good way to boost profits. Organisers are free to run fund raising activities like scratch cards to boost their profits.


Trophies should be provided (at a minimum) for the winner and runner up of each category contested, and also for the plate competition. If possible within budget, further levels of trophy can be provided. Trophy centres showing the ESA logo are available for all events on request. For the lesser events on our calendar we suggest that the cost of trophies be kept low, don’t go spending too much and leaving yourself looking at a loss. Where possible, the trophies should be presented by the organiser and an ESA board member.

Tournament format

There are no restrictions on the format used other than at the events were FISTF world ranking points are awarded. In those cases, the event should follow the FISTF format of groups and knock out. Other events that are not FISTF can be run on whatever format the organiser wants, as long as the competitors are made aware of the format before the event, and a final placing can be allocated to each player. Where possible a Plate competition should be included at all our events.

The Draw

Where possible, the draw should be made in public. The easiest way is to do this on the day, but we are looking at ways to do this live online. This would allow players to watch the draw and allow the organiser to create a program in advance if that is planned.


All events should use the ESA website to promote the event. The ESA will assist with the development of the website and indeed will maintain the website year on year regardless of who hosts the event. The websites are crucial to inform players and attract them to the events. Each website will develop through time to include previous results and photographs.

Press Releases

Where possible a press release should be published both prior to the event and after the event, to help raise the profile of both the event and the ESA in general. These releases will be handled centrally by ESA.

After the event!

The organiser has the responsibility to submit a full set of results to the ESA (and FISTF where appropriate). Results can then be published in a consistent manner and all players kept informed. The organiser must also pay the tournament levy to ESA (and FISTF where appropriate), within a month of the tournament.


Thank you

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