Bergvall system

The Bergvall system was a variation of the traditional knockout tournament system.

It which was used at the 1912, 1920 and 1924 Summer Olympics after being devised by Erik Bergvall, a Swedish water polo player, journalist and sports official who wanted to improve on the traditional knockout method used in Olympic competitions.

Believing that this was only fair in deciding the gold medal winner, Bergvall advocated separate competitions should also be held for the silver and bronze medals, probably not knowing a similar system had been in use for sports competitions in the United States as early as 1884.

Bergvall also believed that teams knocked out in the early rounds of the main gold medal tournament should be given a second chance: all the teams knocked out by the gold medal winner, including the losing finalist, should compete in another knockout competition for the silver medal, then all the teams knocked out by the gold and silver medallists would compete in a third competition for the bronze.

At the 1912, 1920 and 1924 Games, the Bergvall system was used to decide the water polo, while at the 1920 Games it was also used for the football, the ice hockey and the tug of war.[1]

Although the system is fair, there are two intrinsic flaws: firstly, the gold medal final is held in the middle of the tournament, instead of at the end, and secondly, defeated competitors have to remain ready to compete if those who lost to them are to have any chance of winning a medal.

Because of these flaws, the system was dropped by Olympic organisers after the 1924 Olympics, and was abandoned by the NCAA in 1931.

Sample 1Edit

Gold medal roundEdit

Quarterfinals Semifinals Final
  Great Britain (GBR) 2
  United States (USA) 0   Great Britain (GBR) 2
  Belgium (BEL) 0
  Great Britain (GBR) 2
  Netherlands (NED) 0
  Netherlands (NED) 2
  Italy (ITA) 0

Silver medal roundEdit

Semifinals Final
  Belgium (BEL) 2
  United States (USA) 0   Belgium (BEL) 0
  Netherlands (NED) 2

Bronze medal roundEdit

Semifinals Final
  United States (USA) 2
  Italy (ITA) 0   United States (USA) 0
  Belgium (BEL) 2

Sample 2Edit

Gold medal roundEdit

Round of 16 Quarterfinals Semifinals Final
  Great Britain (GBR) 9
  Spain (ESP) 1   Spain (ESP) 0
  Italy (ITA) 1[2]  Great Britain (GBR) 7
  United States (USA) 2
  United States (USA) 7
  Greece (GRE) 0
  Great Britain (GBR) 3
  Belgium (BEL) 11   Belgium (BEL) 2
  Switzerland (SUI) 0   Belgium (BEL) 2
  Netherlands (NED) 1
  Belgium (BEL) 5
  Sweden (SWE) 11   Sweden (SWE) 3
  Czechoslovakia (TCH) 0   Sweden (SWE) 7
  Brazil (BRA) 5   Brazil (BRA) 3
  France (FRA) 1

Silver medal roundEdit

Semifinals Final
  United States (USA) 5
  Spain (ESP) 0   United States (USA) 2
  Belgium (BEL) 7

Bronze medal roundEdit

Quarterfinals Semifinals Final
  Sweden (SWE) 9
  Netherlands (NED) 7   Netherlands (NED) 1
  Czechoslovakia (TCH) 0   Sweden (SWE) 5
  United States (USA) 0
  United States (USA) 7
  Greece (GRE) 5   Greece (GRE) 0
  Italy (ITA) 1

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "www.la84foundation.org" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2010-08-08. Retrieved 2012-09-13.
  2. ^ Italy forfeited the match in extra time.