Wolverhampton Winter League playing rules

These rules have been copied from the "Wolverhampton & District Chess League" playing rules.

1 Divisions
For the purposes of the league competition, the league shall be divided into divisions as may be arranged by the leagues constitution committee (elected at the A.G.M.) before the commencement of each season.  Any new club entering the League cannot enter straight into division 1.  This shall apply to any club dropping out of the League should it wish to join at a later date.
2 Number of matches
Each team competing shall play where there are seven teams or less, home and away matches with every other team in their division.  Where there are 8 teams or more in a division then each team shall play single fixtures with every other team in that division, unless otherwise decided at the A.G.M., or by the sub-committee appointed for this purpose.
3 Fixtures
a) All fixtures shall be arranged at a fixtures meeting convened prior to the commencement of the season save as hereafter provided (See also Rule 7d).
b) A club shall be entitled to insist upon an alteration in the date of a fixture provided it was represented at the fixture meeting and provided that it shall give 28 days written notice to the opposing club secretary and shall offer two alternative dates on the home club's club night, such dates to be within twenty-eight days of the original fixture.  If the two clubs are unable to agree within fourteen days, to play the fixture on one of the two dates suggested, or any other date, the matter shall be referred by the clubs to the Records Secretary who, after receiving representations that the clubs may wish to make, shall fix a date which shall be binding on both clubs, subject to the provisions of 3(c) hereof.
c) A club shall be entitled to insist upon the postponement of a fixture if it proves impossible to play on the date arranged.  Without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing, weather conditions in which travelling is not possible shall be deemed to be included within the scope of this rule but difficulties in raising a team shall not be deemed within its scope.
Any team defaulting a match must give as much notice as possible, and in any case not less than 24 hours, to the opposition.  Failure to do so shall result in the deduction of 1 league point in an away match, or 2 league points in a home match.  Should a home team default and cause a team a wasted journey on two occasions, they shall be expelled from the league for that season and the following season.
d) If a match is postponed under the provisions of 3(c) hereof, the clubs shall agree a new date within fourteen days.  In default of agreement the matter shall be referred by the clubs to the Records Secretary who, after receiving any representations the clubs may wish to make, shall fix a date which shall be binding on both clubs subject to the provisions of 3(c) hereof.  It shall be considered desirable for the new date to be within twenty-eight days of the original date of the fixture.
e) When a club has more than one team in a division, inter-club fixtures must be the first to be played, in each half of the season where applicable, or as soon as possible if it is not practical because of the draw in the case of single fixtures or more than two teams in a division.
4 Number of games per match
a) League matches shall have teams containing these numbers of players in each side:
Division 1     6 a side;
Division 2     6 a side;
Division 3     5 a side;
Division 4     4 a side;
b) A won game shall score 1, a drawn game ½ and a lost game 0 points.
c) A won match shall score 2, a drawn match 1 and a lost match 0 points.
5 Registration of players
a) The players of each club shall be registered and no player shall be registered with more than one club.  A player may change his registration to any other club at any time during the season subject to the provisions of 5(c) hereof.  The change shall be effected by registration whereupon the earlier registration shall automatically be cancelled.  Any player changing clubs shall inform the Records Secretary and his previous club in writing.
b) All players registered for a club shall be a bona fide paid up member of such club, unless said player is an honorary member of the club.
c) (i) The secretary of each club shall supply to the Records Secretary the names and addresses of players it desires to register on a registration form supplied by the league.  The Records Secretary may query the registration of any player, and if not satisfied, shall reject the registration of that player.  The registrations shall not be accepted until any amendment has been made.  Registrations must be done in writing five clear days (from the date of postmark) before the commencement of league or competition play.  All juniors (any person under the age of 18 years on the 1st September in that season) marked with a 'J' in the column provided and show their date of birth.  Failure to comply with the latter's request could result in a club's registration not being accepted.  Any extra registration shall be on a form provided or on a sheet of paper suitable for filing.  No player shall be registered after 1st March.  A copy of the registration form should be sent to the treasurer when sending the club's league fees.
(ii) Any club failing to pay their league fees by the agree date, shall lose all their points gained so far.  They will continue to do so until the fees are paid.  There will be no rearranged matches under any circumstances, until fees are paid.
d) When a club has more than one team competing in the league not less than, six players in Divisions 1 & 2, five players in Division 3, or four players in Division 4, shall be registered for each team.
e) (i) Four of a team's six players in Divisions 1 & 2, three of the five in Division 3, or two of the four in Division 4 must play a minimum 50% of matches during the season to qualify as active players.  A team not having sufficient active players shall have 2 match points per non-active player deducted at the end of the season.  This rule does not apply to a club's lowest team.
(ii) The remaining players shall be registered for the lowest division in which the club is playing.
(iii) Should a player no longer be available e.g. leagues the district, is deceased or is tied/registered to a higher division the Records Secretary must be informed immediately and a substitute player nominated to take his place, provided that this does not leave the club's bottom team short of its full compliment of registered players.  Failure to comply with this rule shall result in the deduction of one match point per match played while the team is in default.
(iv) When a club has more than one team in its lowest division the minimum required players must be registered for each team.  The remaining players may be registered as 'Pool Players'.  These pool players may play for any of the Club's teams up to three times in total.  The players shall be deemed to be tied to the team in which they play on the fourth occasion for the rest of the season.
f) No player shall play for a team in a lower division than that in which he is registered.  A player who has not played more than 3 times for his registered team may be re-registered for a lower team by writing to the Records Secretary.  The player cannot play for his new team until the club has received written confirmation from the Records Secretary of the suitability of the re-registration.  No further re-registration of this player is permitted.  Re-registered players may not play in a higher division.
g) A player may play a total of three times for teams in a higher division than that in which he is registered first but on playing a fourth time in any of the higher divisions than that he was first registered, he shall be deemed to be tied to the team in which he was played on the fourth occasion for the rest of the season.
h) Any team which shall include any player who is not validly registered or who is disqualified from playing for that team shall, in addition to losing the game at such player's board, forfeit one penalty point from its score in the match in question.
6 Match procedure
a) Before the commencement of a match the captains of the respective teams shall exchange lists of: six in Divisions 1 & 2, or five in Division 3 or four in Division 4, eligible players in order of playing strength whether or not the players are present, and shall decide upon the adjudication or adjournment time.  Should a team play any player deliberately out of order they shall lose the offending board and all boards below and in addition two points from the league table.  The Records Secretary may query the registration of a teams board order.
If the captain be aware that any player(s) in hi team will be defaulting then the default(s) will be placed on the bottom board(s).
b) The away team shall have WHITE pieces on the odd boards.
c) Play in all match games must start at either 7.15 or 7.30 pm and each club must state in the league information sheet which they use for home matches.  A continuous period of at least two and a half hours must be allowed for the first session of any match and at least two hours for any adjourned session.
d) Games in all divisions that are unfinished can be decided by adjournment as provided in Rule 8.  In such event:
i) If both players agree to an adjournment the normal venue shall be the home player's club room, or alternatively as may be mutually agreed.
ii) If one player insists on adjournment then that player shall travel to his opponent's club room, otherwise the game will be adjudicated as provided for in Rule 9.
e) If, at the call of time, any game is unfinished, the results may be agreed by the captains or by one other member of their team authorised by them.
f) The secretary/team captain of each club/team must notify the result of the match to the Records Secretary within FIVE days of the date on which the match was played, specifying those games adjourned or to be adjudicated by the letter 'A' on the match card.  He must notify the Records Secretary of the result of any adjourned game within two days of their completion and if they are not completed within TWENTY EIGHT days of the date when the match was first played ,he must notify the Records Secretary the reason for their non-completion and the date on which it is proposed they should be completed.  Any team failing to post a match card within FIVE days of a match being played shall forfeit a point from the league table.  (This means both teams home and away sending in match cards separately).
Nevertheless the first infringement of this rule each season shall not result in any penalty.  Before any points are deducted the Records Secretary shall inform the club secretary that the team has already broken the rule and next time points will be deducted.  The Records Secretary to keep evidence of the infringement to show on request to the secretary of the club concerned.
g) Both players in every game shall keep an accurate record of the game using a recognised system of notation.
7 Games in default
a) A game shall be scored to each player for whom no eligible opponent is provided.  Any club failing to keep an appointment shall lose the match by default.
b) Where a clock is provided, no game shall be claimed by default until the defaulting player's time to the relevant time control shall have expired.
c) Where a clock is not provided, a game shall not be claimed by default until seventy five minutes have elapsed from the starting time.
d) All league matches to have their first session by 7th April and results of matches to be with the Records Secretary by 28th April or not recorded in League Tables.
e) Any club winning a match by default shall send in a match card to claim the match within FIVE days.  Failure to do this will result in a double default.  The defaulting team should also notify the Records Secretary at the same time.
8 Adjournments
a) A game shall not be adjourned for the first time before thirty moves have been made by each player and the agreed session time has been completed.
b) If a game is adjourned the player having the move MUST put his move in unambiguous notation on his score sheet, put his score sheet and that of his opponent in the envelope, seal the envelope and stop the CLOCKS.  The envelope must be kept in safe custody by the player who has not sealed, who must produce the envelope on resumption of play.  Failure to produce the envelope by the custodian shall result in him forfeiting the game.
c) An adjournment must be finalised and the result notified to the Records Secretary within twenty-eight days of the match being played.  Failure to do so will result in both players being given a loss.  Any game commencing after 31st March must adhere to the deadline set by Rule 7(d) (i.e., 28 April).
d) The game shall be resumed at the club room of the player as provided for in Rule 6(d) or as may be agreed by the two players.
e) The date for resumption shall be agreed at the time of the adjournment and for this purpose the player with choice of venue, which need not be at his club, shall offer at least three dates.
f) Failure to keep an appointment shall result in the loss of the game, subject always to the fact that the players can agree a result at any time.
9 Adjudications
a) When a game is to be adjudicated, the position shall be copied on a diagram provided by the league which must be completed in full.
b) An adjudication claim shall be made by each player separately, and forwarded to the Records Secretary separately by both clubs.  Both positions shall arrive within TEN days of the match being played and should either side fail to send in their position within TEN days the other side shall receive the claim.  Should BOTH sides fail to send in within TEN days BOTH shall lose.
c) No position shall be sent for adjudication unless thirty moves have been made by each player.
d) In all cases of positions sent for adjudication no money shall be sent with the positions.  A claim will be made at the end of the season by the treasurer for all outstanding monies.  Adjudication fee £4.00.
e) The Records Secretary shall inform each concerned club's secretary of the adjudication results in writing.
f) If dissatisfied with an adjudication, either club may within fourteen days appeal in writing, enclosing an appeal fee of £10.00 to be returned if the appeal succeeds.  Grounds for appeal to be given in writing and in triplicate.  Upon receipt of the appeal the Records Secretary shall immediately notify the opposing club/team that an appeal has been made.  The opposing club/team may then lodge an appeal on any other board in the same match, provided that the board in question has been the subject of adjudication.  Such appeal shall be sent in writing within SEVEN days from the date advised by the Records Secretary.  Such appeals shall be for decision by a county adjudicator whose decision shall be final.
10 League Champions
a) The team scoring the greatest number of points in each division shall hold the title of league champions in that division.
b) In the event of a tie on points between two or more teams, game average shall be taken into consideration to decide the championship, promotion or relegation positions.  If play off matches are necessary because of a tie on points or game average, these matches shall be regarded as part of the playing season for which the matches are necessary and only bona fide players for their respective teams will be allowed to play in them.  Any player of the club who has been tied to another team during the playing season will not be eligible to take part in the play-off.  The Records Secretary will arrange the play-off and inform the clubs/teams of all the conditions of the play-off.  In the event of a tie in the play-offs, the tie shall be allowed to stand for the championship.
c) Should any team retire during the season from any division, its results shall be ignored in calculating the final tables for that division if less than half of its fixtures have been played.  If half or more of its fixtures have been played, its remaining fixtures shall be scored by default to its opponent.
11 Promotion and Relegation
a) The champions and runners-up of each division shall have the right to be promoted to the next higher division for the following season.  The two lowest teams in each division at the end of the season will be relegated to the next lower division for the following season.
b) Any promotions or relegations for the purpose of adjusting the numbers in each division, can only be made with the consent of the clubs concerned.
c) Should any club withdraw a team from the league, that team shall be the one in the lowest division.  When taking into account promotion and relegation the team dropped out shall count as one of the relegated teams.
12 Chess laws
All matches shall be played in accordance with the rules laid down in the authorised edition of the laws of chess published by the International Chess Federation and the tournament rules of the British Chess Federation unless otherwise provided by these rules.  No persons should act in a way to disturb the players during a game.
13 Use of clocks
The use of clocks shall be compulsory, the time limits shall be:
1 a) 30 moves in the first 75 minutes followed by 24 moves in the next 60.  At the conclusion of Black's 54th move both clocks are to be wound back 15 minutes and the game finished in the time remaining.
b) (For a 3 hour playing session)  36 moves in the first 90 minutes followed by 24 moves in the next 60.  At the conclusion of Black's 60th move both clocks are to be wound back 15 minutes and the game finished in the time remaining.
2 30 moves in the first 65 minutes, after Black's 30th move both clocks are to be wound back 15 minutes and the game is to be finished in the time remaining.
14 Quickplay finishes (Claiming a draw in the last 2 minutes; no arbiter present; no flag fallen.)
a) When a draw is claimed by a player on the basis that his opponent
A) cannot win by normal means  or
B) has been making no effort to win by normal means,
he must immediately stop the clock.  This concludes the game.
b) If his opponent disagrees with the claim, the final position shall be copied on the adjudication diagram provided by the league, which must be completed in full.  In case B) also,the scoresheet must have been completed before play ceases.  The basis of the claim shall be clearly stated on the diagram and the diagram shall be headed: Position occurring in the last 2 minutes of a Quickplay finish.
c) Claims shall be made by each player separately.  These claims shall be sent for adjudication to, and be handled by,the Records Secretary in complete accordance with Rule 9. Adjudications, parts b), d), e) and f) only.  For this purpose, in case B) only, 'Positions' shall be taken to include the scoresheet.
15 Smoking
Smoking will be banned both at the board and in the immediate playing area.  Each club must define its 'Playing area' and home team captains must inform visiting teams of its boundaries.
16 Disputes
In the event of any dispute between any clubs the matter shall be referred to the 'Rules and Disputes sub-committee' in accordance with the league constitution.
17 Competition rules
These rules cancel and replace all previous competition rules of the league and are dated 1996; amended 2000, 2001, 2002.