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New Features – Part 2

afl-new-features-2This is a follow up on Part 1 of the new features for 2015.  You can read part 1 here:

In Part 1 we covered off the following.  All of which were requested on our suggestions page which you can find here:

  • The Waiver Wire
  • Changing the way the Ladder is sorted
  • Drafting models
  • Timezones

Now we need to talk about a bunch of other great new stuff.

Captains, Vice Captains, Kickers, Best Dressed

Screen Shot 2015-02-04 at 10.25.43 pmIn custom Leagues, we have supported the notion of a bonus for a few years now.  In the AFL games, the bonus position is typically used as a Captain where a Coach can nominate any position to be the Captain and get extra points.

In NRL games, the bonus position is typically used as the Kicker where a Coach can nominate a position to be the Kicker and so get extra points for goals.

New in 2015 is the ability to now add a second bonus position which can be used as a Vice Captain in AFL for example or a Captain in NRL in addition to the Kicker.

To set up the bonus position you can do the following:

  1. Screen Shot 2015-02-04 at 10.39.20 pmGo to the League Edit page, you can find it on your Profile pages if you are a League Manager
  2. On the advanced tab of the League Edit page, you will find two check boxes to enable each of the two bonus positions.
  3. You will also find two text fields to give your Bonus positions a name, hit save.
  4. Next you need to tell the system how to calculate the scores for the bonus positions, on the left side menu, click “Positions and Scoring”
  5. Now for each Position, click edit, go to the Advanced tab and add your scoring rules for each of the Bonus positions.

Screen Shot 2015-02-04 at 10.46.33 pmScreen Shot 2015-02-04 at 10.52.50 pm


Now on the “Coaches Box” page, your Coaches will be able to choose either of the two bonus positions.  Coaches just need to click the initial of the bonus position to enable it for a given position.





Screen Shot 2015-01-27 at 10.30.49 pmiOS App

The iOS app has had a complete refresh.  You can read more about it here:


Creating Users with Clubs

This is a small thing but saves a lot of time when trying to get your Competition setup for the first time.  In the past, a Competition Manager had to send an invite out to coaches to get them to sign themselves up – sounds easy enough but we all know organising a group of blokes is like herding cats.  Now a Competition Manager can register a new User when then add a Club.  The system will send the new User an email with their new password and info on how to log in.


Customising Individual Draft Picks

We wrote about the various Draft Models that are available on TheBench in Part 1 but we didn’t go through customising the individual positions.

As the Competition Manager, and when in the Pre-season, ie. before you have started your draft, if you go to the Competition Edit page you will find a “Manage Draft Order” link.  This will take you to a page where you can customise every and any position in the Draft. If you have coaches who have traded draft picks or have run an auction for the first round picks, for example, you can now quickly update the system to suit.

Be aware though that if you add or remove a club or move around the draft priorities, the system will reset to draft to your preferred draft model and blat your customisations.  Just make sure you have everything settled before you make any changes to the picks.

Screen Shot 2015-02-04 at 11.06.43 pm


Drafting Preferences and Disabling Auto-picks

You have been able to setup draft preferences on TheBench for a long time.  Draft preferences is where you nominate your list of players in advance and when your turn in the draft comes around, the system auto-magically picks your next highest ranking available pick.

For some time, we have also supported advanced draft preferences where you can create separate lists of draft preferences and tell the system to pick from a particular list for a particular draft round.  For example, you can have a Midfielder list to be used for draft picks 3, 5, 7 and 9 and then a Back Row list for picks 1, 2, 4 and 6 (mixing up codes there for a moment).

This is great if you wanted to get things setup in advance and didn’t want to hold up the draft when it got to your pick.

What it didn’t do however was let you take control and do a manual pick without having to blow away all your preferences.

Now, on the Club Edit page (available from your Profile page), you can choose to enable or disable Auto Picks from your Draft Preferences.  When enabled, things work the same as last year.  When disabled, your Draft Manager page will show you your draft preferences as a prompt on who is available in your lists but still lets you hit the button to draft – just in case you needed to think on the run and make a few tweaks.

Screen Shot 2015-02-04 at 11.30.43 pm


What else?

What else is up to you as users of TheBench.  If you have an idea, no matter how small or big, post it on our suggestions page and we will see what we can do to get it baked into the System.  You can find there suggestions page here:


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Ben is founder of TheBench. Famous for being relegated two years in a row in his League on TheBench so perhaps more capable in running the site than running his team.

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