The next NECL AGM is on Monday 5 August 2013 at Baddow. The agenda (here) includes two counter proposals for discussion (LCM to decide) on changing registrations in section 22 of the Rules of Match Play.
1) From Witham Chess Club
Witham proposes extending the provision for a club with two teams in division 1 to field teams of more equal strength to all divisions.
2) From the General Secretary
The General Secretary proposes removing the provision for equal strength teams, but reducing the number of players listed for each team to one fewer than the number of boards.
I’ve never understood what benefit this option ever brought in the first place. Perhaps someone will expound the added virtues of each proposal? The examples it could have been applied to in div 1 this past season were Writtle A/B, placed 2nd/3rd, and Brentwood A/B placed 4th/5th. So in these cases it would seem that the option would have made no difference to the end result! But if the top 8 players were very widely spread in grade, why would a club wish to sacrifice chances of a stronger team coming higher in a division to achieve two mid-field results?
I think I see where Witham are coming from, in that if anything is considered good for div1, why shouldn’t it apply to any division?
On the other hand, as far as I know (can anyone verify this?) no club has ever used the option to nominate “teams of more equal strength”. Just having such an option introduces complications and significantly extends the wording of the rules just to cover it’s provision.
Wouldn’t it be simpler to just remove this provision entirely?
I seem to agree with the General Secretary on that part.
There is a lot of provision in the current rule 22 (see below) which has probably never been invoked. What do you think? Would you miss this option if it just disappeared?
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Rule 22 is rather “long-winded” (occupies more than an A4 page) and has 9 clauses (a) to (i). Some of these have other issues but I’ll avoid quoting the rule in full here, and just refer to the relevant clauses.
The above proposals relate to (b), which says;-
(b) Subject to clause (d) hereof, starting from the top of the list, the number of players equal to the number of boards in the club’s ‘A’ team shall be nominated players for that team; the number of players next on the list equal to the number of players in the club’s ‘B’ team shall be nominated players for that team, and so on. A player shall not be eligible to play in any team below the category of team for which he is nominated.
If a club has two teams in Division 1, it has the option to field two teams of more equal strength. If a club wishes to exercise this option, two of the top four registered players must be nominated for each team at the start of the season. The next four can play for either team.
As that references (d), which also mentions “more equal teams”, we need to read that too;-
(d) A club shall be allowed to revise the list at any time during the season. Such a revised list must be received by the General Secretary at least five days before the date from which the club wishes the list to operate. The club must also send the appropriate player registration fee to the General Secretary within the same time limit. The General Secretary will acknowledge receipt of the fee(s) and list, and report on the list’s validity. Players are not eligible to play unless such acknowledgement has been received.
However, if a club has exercised the option to field two more equal teams in Division 1, newly registered players in the top four must be alternately nominated for each of the ‘A’ and ‘B’ teams. Players dropping into the next four positions become eligible for either team. Players dropping out of the top eight positions become eligible to play excess games as in part (c).
And as that references (c), which also mentions “more equal teams”, we need to read that too;-
(c) The maximum number of games a player may play in the League Championship in one season is equal to five in excess of the number of matches remaining to his nominated team by the fixture list at the time when his name first appears on his club’s list of players. In this clause the ‘nominated team’ is that team to which a player is nominated by the first list submitted by his club on which his name appears.
However, if a club has exercised the option to field two more equal teams in Division 1, none of the top eight registered players may play any excess games.