ICO Nations Cup tournament mode is based on regional division of European countries, but non-European countries are also able to take part. Tournament mode is played on two-level group and elimination system. First, Regional tournaments are played in group- or elimination system and then the winners of Regional tournaments – Regional Champions – battle it out for the title of ICO Nations Cup Champion at the Final tournament. All tournaments are organized as independent events, not related to World Series tournaments or World/European Championships.
All participating countries are divided into geographical regions. In the first part of the year Regional Champion tournaments are carried out in all regions as one or two-day tournaments. The winners of these tournaments, the Regional Champions, advance to the Final ICO Nations Cup tournament, organized at the end of the year by a selected host country, which is automatically qualified for the final tournament, as are the last years finalists (under the condition they still participate at the Regional tournament). Only seeded nations are the last years finalists, seeded as Nr. 1 and Nr. 2 at the Final tournament.
Regional tournaments are played each year within the below-listed regions. Regional Champions advance to the Final tournament.
|Denmark, Faroe Islands, Finnland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden|
|Belgium, Ireland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, United Kingdom|
|Andorra, France, Italy, Malta, Monaco, Portugal, San Marino, Spain|
|Austria, Czech Republic, Germany, Liechtenstein, Poland, Slovakia, Switzerland|
|Bosnia, Croatia, Hungary, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia|
|Albania, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Greece, Kosovo, Macedonia, Turkey|
|Belarus, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Russia, Ukraine|
Non-European national teams can take part at the Final tournament only as reigning continental champions until the ICO Nations Cup tournament mode is fully adopted on their continents and the mode is further developed into a final tournament of continental champions only.
Clashes and matches
A national team consists of at least three players – 2 male players (open category, but not as a rule) and 1 female player (women’s category, but not as a rule) – and not more than five players (3 players + 2 reserves that can step in for either singles or doubles matches). A clash between two national teams constists of 6 matches – 4 singles and 2 doubles matches. Matches (2-winning sets) are played in the following playing order:
|Match Nr.||Category||Team 1||vs.||Team 2|
|1||singles||Male Player 1||vs.||Male Player 2|
|2||singles||Female Player||vs.||Female Player|
|3||singles||Male Player 2||vs.||Male Player 1|
|4||doubles||Male Player 2 / Female Player||vs.||Male Player 2 / Female Player|
|5||doubles||Male Player 1 / Female Player||vs.||Male Player 1 / Female Player|
|6||singles||Male Player 1||vs.||Male Player 1|
The winner of clash is the national team with more victories in first 6 matches (6:0, 5:1, 4:2) and receives 2 points, while the defeated team receives 0 points. In case of a tied clash (3:3) after 6 matches in a group clash, the clash is tied and both teams receive 1 point. In case of a tied clash (3:3) after 6 matches in an elimination clash, the winner is decided by better sets ratio. In case of equal sets ratio, the winner is decided by better points ratio. In case of equal points ratio, the winner is decided by draw.
In case of a two or more teams with the same number of points on first place at the end of a Regional (group) tournament, the winner is decided by:
- the result(s) in a clash between these teams;
- the ratio between won and lost matches during the whole tournament;
- the ratio between won and lost sets during the whole tournament;
- the ratio between won and lost points during the whole tournament.
ICO rankings points distribution
ICO rankings points are awarded to winners of all matches at ICO Nations Cup tournaments. Winners of all singles and doubles matches at ICO Nations Cup Regional tournaments receive 150 points per won match for their respective (open, women and doubles only) category, while winners of all singles and doubles matches at ICO Nations Cup Final tournament receive 300 points per won match for their respective (open, women and doubles only) categories. No points are awarded for a lost match at either Regional or Final tournament.
|ICO Nations Cup||Won match||Lost match|
|Regional tournament||150 ICO rankings points||0 ICO rankings points|
|Final tournament||300 ICO rankings points||0 ICO rankings points|