Clubs League Season 4 Rules

Clubs League Season 4 Rules

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A. Schedule

A1.’s Clubs League Season 4's regular season will be Saturday, February 12 through Saturday, April 2, 2022. The top 8 clubs in each division will qualify for the playoffs, to be played in April 2022.

A2. Season 4 will have weekly "regular season" matches on 6 Saturdays – February 12, February 19, February 26, March 19, March 26, April 2, 2022.  March 5 and March 12 are reserved as break weeks with no scheduled matches (can be used to make up missed matches).

A3. The default match time is Saturday 10am Pacific / 1pm Eastern / 19:00 CEST. See E6 and E7 for rescheduling matches.

A4. The Leagues Administrator will post the club vs club pairings each Tuesday.

A5. Club admins must report weekly results by each Sunday.

A6. The estimated match time is 90 minutes. The blitz segment should be scheduled for 75 minutes after the rapid segment.


B. Divisions

B1. There are two divisions – Division A and Division B. There is no difference in the divisions besides the minimum number of players per match.

B2. The Leagues Administrator will divide clubs into Division A or B based on the size of their club and physical club. 

B3. Division A has a minimum of 10 boards per match. Division B has a minimum of 4 boards per match.


C. Club and Player Eligibility

C1. To be eligible for the Clubs League, a club must have an in-person (face-to-face) component, for example a physical chess club or academy. Clubs which only operate in an online presence are not eligible for this league. Clubs must also have a club.  League management will determine whether each club is eligible or not. Clubs which are found to be ineligible before or during the season will be removed.

C2. The deadline for club admins to apply for season 4 was February 4, 2022.

C3. League management may require club admins to change their club name and/or description at any time.

C4. Clubs do not have to use the same players for each match or even the two segments in each match.

C5. There is no strict requirement to be a member of the physical club to represent the club in the Clubs League. However, in the spirit of the “clubs” league, clubs which extensively recruit players who have no physical, social, or online connections to the club may be deemed ineligible.

C6. Players may only compete for one club in a season. No exceptions.

C7. Titled players must played from a public, "titled account" - they may not use an anonymous or untitled account.


D. Pairings, Standings, Scoring, Tiebreaks

D1. The regular season will generally use Swiss pairings, with some clarifications:

         D1a. Clubs will not have any rating or seeding during the regular season.

         D1b. When possible, the Leagues Administrator will try to pair clubs in similar time zones.

         D1c. In general, clubs will play other clubs with similar match points after accounting for D1b.

D2. The Leagues Administrator will post the club vs club pairings each Tuesday before the match. These pairings are tentative and subject to change until finalized on Wednesday.

D3. If a club anticipates not being able to participate in a given week, they may request to skip a regular season match, in which they will receive a half-point bye (0.5 match points).  Only one half-point bye may be requested, any future skipped rounds are worth zero points.  The bye request deadline is the Monday before each match. Clubs may withdraw from the league using the same deadline (Monday, before the pairings go up on Tuesday).  Clubs which request byes are still eligible for prizes.

D4. League standings are first based on match points, then the tiebreaks in D5.

D5. Tiebreaks - TB1: Solkoff. TB2: Sonneborn-Berger.

D6. Individual tiebreaks (for top performer prizes) - TB1: Total points scored throughout regular season. TB2: Higher rapid rating. TB3: Higher blitz rating.


E. Club Admin Responsibilities

E1. Club admins must be a Super Admin or Club Admin of their club.  They should also request to join the Clubs League club, which is only for club admins.  This is where pairings and official information will be posted. Club admins may play in the club's matches.

E2. It is recommended to have multiple admins who may share the club’s responsibilities; however one admin should be ultimately responsible for their club.

E3. Club admins are responsible for recruiting enough players for each match and avoiding forfeits.

E4. Both club admins must report weekly results, forfeits, and other issues to the League Administrator by end of day Sunday.  This is required of both clubs (winners and losers).

E5. Admins from both clubs are responsible for setting up both matches (Rapid and Blitz) with the opposing club. The Leagues Administrator will post the club vs club pairings each Tuesday, but the club admins are responsible for creating the match with each other.  The match title for each match should be: CCL: Club A vs Club B - Week 1 - Rapid and CCL: Club A vs Club B - Week 1 - Blitz

E6. Matches should be played on Saturdays whenever possible, preferably at the suggested match time mentioned in A3. Matches may be played on Friday and Sunday also. Playing a league match on any day besides Friday, Saturday, or Sunday requires the advance permission of the Leagues Administrator.

E7. Admins of both clubs should contact each other to first determine if they would like to play at the suggested match time in A3. If one club does not agree, club admins should negotiate potential match times by offering a few time slots which may be acceptable.  Club admins are expected to be able to compromise regarding match time negotiation, as the highest priority is to have the match played.

E8. It is strongly recommended to ask the opposing club's admin how many players they expect to bring for the match.

E9. There is no prior lineup submission required. Admins are responsible to ensure their club members are logged into Live Chess at the match time.


F. Match format / Player recruitment

F1. Each match is a club vs club match of two segments - rapid and blitz. Players must be in their club to represent their club in league matches.

F2. Each match consists of two segments – a rapid segment and a blitz segment.  Each segment is weighted equally – if a club wins both segments, they earn a full match point, if one club wins the rapid and the other club wins the blitz, it is a tied match.  In case one segment is tied, the club that wins the other segment will receive the full match point.  Game points are not relevant in determining the match result. Only the result of each segment (win, loss, draw) is significant.

F3. Players are not required to play both segments in a match – they may play either segment, or both.  All club matches must have both segments – club admins may not agree to skip either segment.

F4. In each segment (rapid and blitz), each player will play 2 games against the same opponent (white/black).  Players will not necessarily play the same player in both segments.

F5. The rapid time control is 15 minutes plus 2 second increment. The blitz time control is 3 minutes plus 2 second increment.

F6. In each segment, the club with the most game points wins that match segment.

F7. Clubs may recruit any players for a match. There is no rating minimum or maximum. See C5 and C6.

F8. Matches will be played based on Rapid and Blitz Ratings at the time of the match - Board 1 vs Board 1, Board 2 vs Board 2, etc.

F9. It is not permitted for clubs or players to alter the match format of a specific match, even if both players/admins/clubs agree.  All games and matches should be played with the same conditions.

F10. See the division board capacities in B3.  Clubs are encouraged to discuss with their teams to estimate how many players each match will have.

F11. Players should show up early for their matches and ensure a stable connection. It is recommended but not required to play from a computer in case of connectivity issues. Players must join the rapid and blitz segments separately.

F12. Clubs are encouraged to bring as many players as possible to each match.  The minimum for each segment of each match is 10 players per club for Division A and 4 players per club for Division B.

F12a. If a club brings less than the minimum number of players, the match will still be played, but they will be forfeited on the "missing" boards.

F12b. If both clubs bring more than the required amount of players, all games will count (for example, in Division A, if both clubs have 15 players, the games from all 15 players will count, not just the top 12 boards.  All played games will count for the match results.


G. Playoffs

G1. After the regular 6 round season, the top 8 clubs in each division, based on tiebreaks if necessary, will advance to the playoffs.  If clubs from the top 8 decide not to participate in the playoffs, the next club(s) in line will be invited (#9, #10, etc.)

G2. Players must compete in at least 1 regular season match in order to play in the playoffs.  Players in violation of this rule will have their scores amended as if they lost 0-2.

G3. The playoff will be a knockout (single elimination) with standard KO pairings based on standings from the regular season - 1 vs 8, 2 vs 7, etc..

G4. The playoff Quarter-Finals will be Saturday, April 9, 2022.  The playoff Semi-Finals will be Saturday, April 16.  The playoff Finals will be Saturday, April 23.

G5. Playoff matches will have the same format as the regular season, with a rapid and blitz segment.

G6. In the case of a drawn match in the playoffs (one club wins rapid, the other club wins blitz), the sum of the total game points from the rapid and blitz matches will be declared the winner.  In case of tie in total game points, the higher ranked club at the end of the regular season will be declared the winner of the match.


H. Forfeits, Withdrawals, Disqualifications

H1. Forfeit points occur when a club does not bring the required number of players to a match. The forfeits will automatically occur on the bottom boards.

H2. Example 1: in a Division A match (10 vs 10), if only 8 players show up for Club C and 12 players show up for Club D, then Club D receives 4 game points by forfeit (2 games * 2 missing players = 4 points) and the match is played 8 vs 8 players.

H3. Example 2: in a Division A match (10 vs 10), if 20 players show up for Club E and 15 players show up for Club F,  the match will automatically be played 15 vs 15, but there will not be any forfeit points awarded, since both clubs brought more players than the minimum required.  In this case, the lowest 5 rated players for Club E would not be paired.

H4. Clubs with multiple forfeits or other issues may be removed from the League at any time.

H5.  Any club may withdraw from the league freely. Club admins should provide league management with a withdrawal in a timely fashion (Monday before the next round) so as not to ruin any posted pairings.

H6. If it is found that a player has played for multiple clubs (see C6), the player may be disqualified from the League for the current season.  The results of the player’s most recent matches may be changed to forfeits for the purposes of scoring. If a player, after playing for one club, then plays multiple games for another club, then the scores may be adjusted as if the multi club player lost all games, for all clubs they have played for.

H7. If two clubs are not able to schedule a match, the Leagues Administrator may declare the match an unplayed draw, or a forfeit loss for one or both clubs if either or both clubs have not made a fair effort to schedule the match.


I. League Management / Appeals

I1. Leagues Administrator: Grant Oen,, @GrantOen

I2. The official language of communication to and from League management is English. 

I3. League management may give the following penalties to any player or club: warning, match score adjustment, game point adjustment, match result adjustment, disqualification.

I4. A club wishing to appeal a game, result, ruling, or other league issue should have a club admin submit the appeal to the Leagues Administrator, who will distribute it to additional staff as necessary.  Any match-related appeals must be submitted within 24 hours of the match.

I7. League management has full discretion regarding issues which are not clearly defined by the rules and may make an exception to the rules or edit these rules at any time.


J. Fair Play

J1. will monitor and review Clubs League games and matches for fair play.

J2. If a player's account is closed for Fair Play, the result of those games will generally be amended as if the closed account had lost all Clubs League games, even if the Fair Play Violations did not occur in a league match. If several weeks have passed, the result of a certain game or match may  or may not be overturned, at the Leagues Administrator's discretion.

J3.  Even after their conclusion, game and match results are subject to being overturned.

J4. Players and clubs may face penalties for fair play violations, including match point/game point adjustment for multiple matches and disqualification from the league.

J5. Club admins should submit fair play complaints by reporting the account in question. All such reports are reviewed by the Fair Play team.


K. Prizes

K1. Prizes will be based on standings/scoring/tiebreaks in section D.

K2. Prize List - the prizes are the same in Divisions A and B.

K3. Players found in violation of Fair Play rules are not eligible for prizes.  Clubs with many fair play violations will be deemed ineligible for prizes.

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