ARRANGEMENTS & ELIGIBILITY
- All Division 1 matches shall be played over 4 boards.
Division 2 matches should usually be played over 6 boards.
However, if a team in Division 2 wishes to play only 4 (or 5)
members on a regular basis it should announce this at the
beginning of the season and consistently adhere to their
choice. All Division 3 matches shall be played over 4 boards,
except by prior arrangement. Division 1 teams are open to
players of all grades. Division 2 teams are restricted in that
only one player graded over 165 may play in a team. In
Division 3: (1) no player graded over 145 may play (2) there
is an upper limit of 125 on the average grade per player and
(3) players graded under 95 are deemed to be 95. (The aim of
this is to prevent teams from using one very low graded player
and 3 relatively highly graded players.).
- For the purpose of determining eligibility for
grade-limited teams the grades applying at the start of the
season shall be used throughout the season. If a player is
ungraded in the July list then the club concerned should at
least three days before the match report the relevant facts to
the Grading Officer who will determine a provisional grade
(*grade). Some of the factors that will affect the *grade are
listed in the appendix, paragraph 8.
- The second-named club is away and shall have white on
- A player is not permitted to represent more than one team in
any section of a division of the League. Genuine transfer may
take place with the agreement of the League Secretary.
- The penalty for playing an ineligible player in any match
shall be the loss of the game for that player and a win for
the opponent, provided the opponent is present and eligible.
The game(s) will still be graded according to the result of
the game as played. The League Secretary may impose an
additional penalty if he is satisfied that the inclusion of an
ineligible player was deliberate or wilful.
2. MATCH SHEETS
- Before any match the Captains shall enter the names of their
players on a match sheet from previously written team sheets.
Except with the express agreement of Team Captains players
shall be arranged in descending order of strength. Unless with
the explicit consent of the opposing captain (recorded on the
match sheet) any player with a grade 5 points or more above
that of a player on a higher board shall be deemed ineligible.
The penalty is the same as that specified in 1(e). Default(s)
known in advance shall be conceded on the lowest board(s)
- For board order purposes the latest published grading list
shall be used, i.e. the January list takes precedence over the
July list and over any estimated *grades for previously
- For the assistance of the Results Officer, clubs are asked
to ensure that all the initials of each player appear on the
match sheet and junior players are indicated with a (J). The
criterion for a junior is under 18 on 1 September. For new
players also give (1) date of birth, (2) details of previous
- To confirm compliance with grading limitations and help
player identification grades of players shall be written on
the match sheet.
- The match sheet (normally signed by both Captains) must be
posted, or a scan sent by email, to the appropriate League
Secretary within 14 days by the Captain of the winning team,
or in the case of a drawn match by the Captain of the home
team. Failure to comply could result in 0 points for each
team. Notes of agreements between Captains should be recorded
on the scoresheet.
- Length of matches is at the discretion of respective
Captains. Quick-play finishes shall be used in all league
matches. Unless both Captains agree otherwise the rate of play
shall be 35 moves in 75 minutes followed by a 15 minutes
- If a player is not present at the start of a game his
opponent shall start his clock. A player forfeits the game
when his flag drops at the first time control, that is after
- Recording of moves is compulsory until a player has less
than 5 minutes left on his clock.
- Spectators must not interfere in games in any way.
- A player may claim a draw when he has less than two minutes
left on his clock and before his flag falls. This
concludes the game.
He may claim on the basis (i) that his opponent cannot win by
normal means, and/or (ii) that his opponent has been
making no effort to win by normal means. In (i) the player
must write down the final position and his opponent verify it.
In (ii) the player must write down the final position and
submit an up-to-date scoresheet. The opponent shall verify
both the scoresheet and the final position.
- In the first instance the claim should be referred to the
Match Captains. If the Match Captains do not agree, the claim
shall be referred to an arbiter whose decision shall be the
- For a claim under 5.3a) above only clear-cut situations
will be considered.
Note: The arbiter’s role is not the same as an adjudicator’s. In
other words it is not an arbiter’s role to determine what the
outcome of the game would be with best play by both sides. Hence
it is not sufficient to claim that the position is ‘a theoretical
draw’. Some theoretical draws can be actually quite tricky to
defend and a player is allowed to use his time advantage to try to
force a mistake. A claimant would be expected to demonstrate, at
the time of first making the claim
(i.e. not as a result of
any post-game analysis), that there is a forced route to an
obviously drawn position.
The usual ECF rules apply.
Up-to-date score sheets and positions for arbitration should be
sent to the League Secretary.
In a section of the league when two
teams score an equal number of points the winner will be
determined by the results of the games played between the teams.
If necessary (a) board count, (b) elimination will be used to
determine a winner. In the event of three or more teams finishing
equal on points, then a tie break by a) matches won, and then b)
individual games won, would decide.
7. KNOCK-OUT CUP
- League rules apply apart from the changes specified in (b),
(c) and (d).
- Fixtures will be played over 8 boards, except by agreement
between the captains.
- Captains shall toss for colours.
- Eligibility: A player is eligible to play for any club in
the Somerset Cup competition provided either  in the
current season he has been a member of the club concerned for
a minimum of 28 days prior to the date of the match, or, 
he has been a member of the club concerned in a season prior
to the current season. A member is a player who has paid his
club fee for the season in question
- If a player has an Elo rating but not an ECF grade then the
appropriate ECF formula should be used to obtain an equivalent
ECF grade. Note that the current Formula for Conversion is as
follows:- [i] For national Elo ratings and for FIDE Elo
ratings > 2327: ECF = (Elo-600)/8, [ii] For FIDE ratings
between 1600 and 2327: ECF = (FIDE-1250)/5.
- If a player is currently ungraded but has had an ECF grade
in the past then the latest published grade should be used
with a reduction of 3 points per year for each year missing
since publication, up to a maximum of 15 points. If the latest
published grade was before 2009, it will need to be converted
to a new grade before applying the reduction for inactivity,
i.e. the player’s assumed grade (after the maximum 15 point
reduction) shall be 0.81 x old grade +28.
- For those not covered by 8(a) and 8(b) and for whom there
is insufficient data for the Grading Officer to estimate a
grade under 1(b) ungraded players are “deemed to be” 110.
- The Results Officer will publish the *grades on the
web-site so that all clubs have access to the relevant
Issues covered by FIDE & ECF
rules are not normally repeated in this document. Copies of these
rules may be obtained from the SCCA Secretary. Proposals for
amendment should be received by the 30 April.