CROYDON & DISTRICT CHESS LEAGUE COMPETITION RULES: 2023/2024
Version date: 31/8/23
League competitions shall be held in one or more divisions as decided by a General Meeting. Teams shall consist of four players.
- TEAM POSITIONS
A won match shall count one point to the winning team and a drawn match half a point to
each team. Within a division, teams will be placed in the following order: match points, highest first; then game points, highest first. For any remaining ties the results of the matches between the tied teams will be used in the same way to determine placings.
(a) Before each fixture, captains must ensure that:
- All team members are registered on their club’s Player List as shown on the LMS website
- Fixed September ratings are to be used to determine team eligibility, the live monthly rating used to determine board order. If a player’s rating changes by more than 400 points in a season, the League Controller has the discretion to set a new rating for that player.
- The League Controller has been notified of any newly registered players.
A breach of 3(a) may, at the discretion of the League Controller, result in the loss of the offending player’s games for the purpose of calculating points (with opponent scoring a win). For rating purposes the game will be scored according to the result of the game.
(b) No player shall play for more than one club in any division. The first club represented in
a division in the season is assumed to be the player’s declared club.
(c) No player shall play for more than one team in the same division. The first team played
for in the season shall be assumed to be the player’s team.
A breach of 3(b) or 3(c) shall result in the loss of the particular game(s) involved for the offending player for the purpose of calculating points (with opponent scoring a win). For rating purposes the game will be scored according to the result of the game.
(e) Players who are not members of the English Chess Federation (ECF) may play up to three games in the main divisions, or six games in the Rapidplay Division, after which they will not be permitted to play again until they have ECF membership. It is the responsibility of clubs to ensure their players do not breach this rule. A club must reimburse the League for any ECF charges incurred as a consequence of a breach of 3(e).
- TEAM RATING RESTRICTIONS
The following rating restrictions shall apply:
Division 1, Croydon Shield: open
Division 2, Martin Cath Trophy: restricted to a total of 7800 ECF for the team.
Division 3, Dave Luckin Trophy: restricted to a total of 6600 ECF for the team.
Division 4, Deric Cox Trophy: restricted to a total of 5800 ECF for the team.
Rapidplay Division, David Hodgson Trophy: restricted to a total of 7800 ECF for the team (see section 21 for rules specific to the David Hodgson Trophy Rapidplay Division).
For each rating-restriction breach the offending team will have its game points tally reduced by half a game point. The League Controller may also impose a further penalty at their discretion taking into account the circumstances of the infringement (any such ruling being subject to an appeal which must be requested within seven days of the League Controller’s ruling).
ECF A or K OTB Standard ratings (OTB Rapid ratings in the David Hodgson Trophy) shall be used to determine playing strength (see Rule 7). Players with a P (Partial) rating shall be considered unrated.
Unrated players shall be assigned an L (Local) rating by the League Controller following
advice from the Secretary of the player’s club. Such advice should be provided before a player makes their first appearance for a club. L ratings may be revised throughout the season.
If a player who is named on the team list defaults for any reason, their rating will count towards the rating of the team. Where an unnamed player defaults, the total rating
will be calculated using the mean rating of the named players to calculate the rating of the
- PRE-MATCH ARRANGEMENTS
At least five minutes before the time arranged for the start of the match, the captains of each team shall exchange team lists. The players must be arranged in descending order of playing strength according to their rating (see Rule 5) starting on Board 1. Captains are permitted some leeway in determining playing strength where A, K or L ratings do not adequately reflect a player’s current playing strength, subject to the agreement of the opposing team captain.
- PLAYING SESSION
Matches will normally start at 7.40pm and will have a playing session of at least two hours and forty minutes.
- GAMES UNFINISHED AT THE END OF THE PLAYING SESSION
Where a game is unfinished at the end of the playing session, and the players and captains have not been able to agree the result, the position shall be recorded by the players. The clubs will then have a seven-day period from the date of the match to review the position with the aid of chess engines and endgame tablebases if appropriate. If a result is agreed, both clubs shall notify the League Controller. If a result is not agreed, the position shall be submitted to an independent adjudicator. The fee for external adjudication shall be set by the Management Committee and the cost borne by the club losing the adjudication claim. The decision of the adjudicator shall be final.
Match captains shall toss for colours immediately after the exchange of team lists, the
winner taking white on the odd numbered boards.
After 30 minutes from the start of a match a team shall score a win for a player whose proper opponent is still absent, unless another player has previously been substituted.
- TIME CONTROLS
In the standardplay divisions the default time control is all moves in 75 minutes plus a 10 second increment per move. Alternatively, if both players and their captains agree, all moves in 60 minutes per player plus 20 minutes per player quickplay finish.
See Rule 21 for time controls in the David Hodgson Rapidplay Division.
Each match result must be entered and verified on the LMS website by clubs within eight days of the match taking place. The penalty for non-compliance is deduction of half a game point for the first two instances rising to a full game point from the third instance.
- DISPUTES ARISING OUTSIDE OF PLAY
Details of any disputes or protests by a club shall be sent in writing (email or post) within 7
days of the incident to the League Controller who will make a ruling on the matter. A ruling made by the League Controller may be appealed to a panel which will normally consist of other members of the League Committee together with any additional individuals the Committee may wish to co-opt to hear the appeal.
Any proposed alteration or addition to these rules shall be sent to the League Secretary at
least 14 days before a General Meeting and shall require a simple majority to be passed at
this General Meeting.
If any team defaults more than half its matches during a season, all that team’s matches shall
be cancelled from that competition.
The League Committee shall have the power to decide upon any issue which may not be
covered by the above rules.
- PLAYING RULES
All games will be played using the Laws of Chess as recognised by the ECF except where modified in the rules.
The FIDE Laws of Chess
Please note the following in particular.
Writing down moves:
A player must write down all moves until they have 5 minutes remaining on their clock. If a player fails to write down their moves after repeated warnings they will forfeit the game.
Penalties for illegal moves:
For the first instance of an illegal move, two minutes shall be added to the clock of the opponent and the illegal move shall be replaced with a legal move. If a player makes a second illegal move in a game they shall be deemed to have lost the game unless the opponent is unable to checkmate by a legal series of moves, in which case the result is a draw.
A player with less than two minutes remaining on their clock may make a draw claim if they believe their opponent either cannot win by normal means or has been making no effort to win my normal means. If agreement is not reached between the two match captains the matter should be referred to the League Controller.
- MOBILE PHONES
Mobile phones may be brought into the playing area but must be switched off or in silent
mode in the playing area. Any such device may be used or answered only outside the
playing area. If any such device is used or produces any sound in the playing area during
play then the player with the phone should, in the first instance, be warned. A second offence will result in the loss of the game. These rules may be relaxed in exceptional circumstances where there is prior agreement between match captains.
- DISPUTES ARISING DURING PLAY
In the event of a dispute where no ECF arbiter is present, players may stop their clocks and try to resolve the matter with the aid of their match captains. If the matter cannot be resolved, it should be referred to the League Controller for a ruling. The League Controller’s decision can be appealed and heard by the League Committee. Note: It is expected that up-to-date copies of these rules and the Laws of Chess will be available at the venue of the home team.
- BIELSKI CUP RULES
The rules below are for guidance only and may be changed by the organiser of the event in collaboration with the League Controller.
- Teams will comprise four players.
- The most recent ECF rapidplay ratings A or K will be used where available; otherwise the most recent standard play A or K ratings; otherwise L ratings.
- A total rating limit of less than 7800 will apply for each team.
- The rate of play will be between five and ten minutes per player, as determined by the organiser.
- The touch piece move rule applies.
- Illegal moves: In the first instance, one minute to be added to the opponent’s clock. A win may be claimed for a second illegal move.
- The FIDE Rules of Chess on blitz chess, as recognised by the ECF and except where modified by these rules, will apply.
- Places will be determined: game points first and then match points. For any remaining ties the results of the matches between the tied teams will be used in the same way to determine placings.
- TROST TROPHY RULES
The rules for the Trost Trophy will be sent out at least two weeks in advance of the
- RAPIDPLAY DIVISION
- The preceding rules for standardplay competitions (for example, with regard to board order) apply unless otherwise stated.
- Matches will be played in two parts, each over four boards. The first part of a match will normally start at 7.40pm and the second part will follow once the first part is complete.
- The team which wins the toss will be White on odd-numbered boards in the first part and Black on odd-numbered boards in the second part.
- The total rating limit for each team for each part is 7800. A team may field substitutes for the second part of a match, but must remain within the total rating limit.
- ECF rapid A and K ratings will be used where available; otherwise standard A and K ratings where available; otherwise estimated L ratings.
- The time limit for each game is 25 minutes per player or, if both players and their captains agree, 20 minutes per player with a 10 second increment before each move.
- There will be no default time.
- The FIDE Laws of Chess for Rapidplay (in force at the commencement of the competition) will apply with one exception: illegal moves shall be treated in the same way as for standard play games. There is no requirement for the players to record moves. However, this may impact on the ability of a player to make a successful draw claim.