At its March meeting in California, the Adult/Senior Competition Committee (ASCC) voted that Super Cat II's must offer some form of consolation and should offer 3/4 playoffs. Men's Supers that have not provided consolations in the past are Rancho Mirage (January), Atlanta (May), Mill Valley (June), Newport Beach (September) and Scottsdale (December).
The decision was apparently made without the participation of the affected tournaments nor had they been notified of its effect several weeks later.
Click here to read the complete report of the September 2011 meeting of the Adult/Senior Competition Committee. Two notable (and, I would argue, misguided) changes:
the number of permitted seeds has been increased;
the number of tournaments required for a national ranking in 2012 has been reduced (from five to four).
Both changes protect stronger players. At a time when the number of entrants is down and the number of "open" tournaments is under siege from NTRP-rated events, wouldn't it make more sense to avoid discouraging competitive-but-non-elite players who constitute the majority?
With this change unseeded players are much more likely to meet a seed in the first round so their occasional chance to progress in main draws is diminished. Ending up in the consolation will be their lot ─ a result that doesn't bother one committee member: ("If weaker players can't win their first rounds they should play in the consolation and win rounds their [sic].")
As for rankings, isn't it self-evident that any player, strong or average, prioritizes the importance of his ranking and, consequently, how many tournaments he'll enter? Just because the committee observes what it considers undeserved results in the standings why the devil should it intervene? Let the players sort it out on the court!