Below are some ideas to improve the quality of the US teams that do attend.
But first, here are the simplified eligibility rules for rosters:
- Teams are selected in descending order of finish at Nationals, extending to Regionals somehow if not enough teams from Nationals choose to go (happened as recently as 1995, when there were about a dozen US teams at Worlds). (Oh, and if your team is a bunch of dicks, you might not get picked either.)
- Anyone on the team in the qualifying year or the playing year is eligible.
- Anyone not on another roster in the playing year is eligible.
- An additional 3 or 5 players can be added to the roster.
- Teams that do go will probably be short-handed by a lot.
- There might not be enough Nationals teams that choose to go, forcing Regionals-level teams to go. (And how do you determine whether NW#5 should go over S#4?) And since WFDF uses Worlds rankings to help determine bid allocations for the next Worlds, this could affect the US in 2010 as well.
- The qualifying tournament is more than a year before the event.
Ideas (UPA would have to get WFDF approval on these):
- Significantly expand the number of ringers allowed.
- Allow teams in the same region to combine.
- Allocate, say, half of the spots to Nationals qualifiers, and hold a separate qualifying tournament for the remaining spots. Set an early deadline (May 15) for Nationals teams to commit, then hold the qualifying tournament in June. Put strict requirements on the rosters for these qualifying tournaments, e.g., all players must either play with that team in the fall series or they must attend Worlds. The situation you want to avoid is having a group of ringers qualify the team but then not attend Worlds.