The FNC European Masters 2016

Eóin Allan won the 2015 European Masters, but who will win in 2016?

The Race to Berlin is on! Throughout the year, every player is collecting rankings points, and the top 10 European players will be invited to take part in an end of year final in November 2016.

Instead of a straight knockout, this tournament is assured of many high-level matchups due to the unique round-robin first round. The whole tournament will be streamed live online, and there will be full matches and highlights videos published after the event.

Check out the European Masters 2016 qualification overview.

How it works:

  • The FNC European Masters 2016 will be held on Saturday 26th November, in Berlin, Germany.
  • The 2016 Race Rankings will determine qualification, with the top 10 on a specific date (in November, to be decided) invited to take part.
  • Only top 10 players residing in Europe will be invited directly (to reduce travel expense and other costs).
  • Only top 10 players with a minimum of three tournament results will be eligible.
  • If a top 10 player declines the tournament invitation for any reason, the next highest ranked player who meets the above criteria will be invited.
  • If a player wins one of the four Major tournaments of 2016 (BJC, NJF, EJC, Hamburg) and takes part in two other tournaments but still isn't in the top 10 players at the end of the year, they will receive a wildcard invite to the tournament, replacing the player in tenth position. This is only available to one player, so only the highest ranked major winner with two other tournaments will get the wildcard invite.
  • The tournament will take place in two stages.
  • Group Stage
    • The 10 players will be split into two groups of five, with seeds 1 and 2 in opposite groups, then a coin flip deciding the groups of 3 and 4, then 5 and 6, then 7 and 8, and finally 9 and 10.
    • Each player will play the other four in their group in a round robin format, for a total of 20 matches across the two groups.
    • Each group match will be decided by the first player to win two sets, with each set played to three points.
    • These matches will not be classed as qualification matches, but tournament-level matches, with the results counting in head-to-head and other records.
    • For each match win a player will receive 50 points per win, for a total of 200 points for an unbeaten player.
  • Knockout Stage
    • The top four players from each group (decided by wins then various tie-breaking criteria) will enter an eight player knockout stage.
    • Seeding will be based on results from the group stage, not initial seedings.
    • Match 1: A1 vs B4
    • Match 2: B2 vs A3
    • Match 3: A2 vs B3
    • Match 4: B1 vs A4
    • The winners of match 1 and match 2 will meet in semi-final 1 and the winners of match 3 and 4 will meet in semi-final 2.
    • The losing semi-finalists meet in a third place match.
    • The winning semi-finalists meet in the final match.
    • Winning any match will add to a player's 2015 rankings points. An unbeaten player will receive 50 points per group stage win, 15 bonus points for reaching the round of 8, 55 more for winning the R8 match, 90 more for the semi-final, and 140 for the final, for a total of 500 points. The third place match will be worth 50 points.
    • The two players who don't make the round of 8 will have a 9th place playoff, worth 15 points.
  • The winner of this tournament will be considered FNC European Champion for 2016.
  • The rankings points count towards the 2016 year-end rankings, on top of the players' seven best results of the year at the four tournament levels, and will help decide the year-end number 1 player. The points will not count towards qualification for the 2017 FNC European Masters or any other year-end event that might take place in 2017. For the FNC Current Rankings, based on the past 52 weeks of tournaments, the European Masters will be categorized as a 500 point event.

If you have any feedback, ideas, suggestions or comments, please email me:

Last updated: 2016-07-11

© Copyright 2018, Luke Burrage. All rights reserved.