In Italian rugby you can be promoted from III division (Serie A girone B) directly to I division (Eccellenza), and you can be relegated from II division (Serie A girone A) directly to IV division (Serie B).

Which are the benefits of such an odd format?

Is this format really odd, or is it somewhat widespread in team sports?

  • @edmastermind29 While here I'm trying a broader question and any team sports employing such a rule would fit, I again wonder why you specifically added uefa.
    – o0'.
    Mar 10, 2014 at 8:36
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    This was due to the Serie-A/B inclusion...but please accept my apologies as I overlooked the rugby tag. Since you were going broader, I did not feel italy was appropriate for either question. Thanks for the clarification.
    – user527
    Mar 10, 2014 at 13:19
  • @edmastermind29 nevermind, I'm perfectly fine with that! (good idea to remove italy, I'm wondering if it would be better to remove rugby, since I would accept answers on other team sports too.
    – o0'.
    Mar 10, 2014 at 13:58
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    Rugby's your main example, but added international-sports to include other team sports broadly.
    – user527
    Mar 10, 2014 at 14:05

1 Answer 1


Possibly the most extreme system comes from Chess, and the McMahon competition format.

The idea behind big drops in those instances are to ensure that competitors are, as often as possible, meeting evenly matched competitors.

How often large adjustments in seeding, ranking and match-pairing are made in team sports, I cannot say.

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