Coulsdon Chess Summer Cup 2024: RULES & REGULATIONS

1    All matches shall be played according to the FIDE Laws of Chess. The decision of the Arbiter or his/her appointed deputy shall be final in all matters. 

2    Players may only play in a section that their FIDE Rating and ECF grade (using the latest conversion formula that Coulsdon Chess understands is in place) puts them, unless the vast majority of the players booked for the section they wish to play in are happy to accept them (we will generally work on 90%).  As such, players wishing to apply for a higher section must ensure they enter by the penultimate Monday of May (2 weeks before the opening round) so that we have time to canvass.  Coulsdon Chess will email those playing in that section and give them until the end of the week to reply.  Where no response is received from a player, it will be assumed that the entry has been accepted by  that person.

3    Coulsdon Chess holds the right to move players into higher sections (even after the start) where it is felt that they will be too strong for a section. 

4    Players unable to attend on any given Monday must notify Coulsdon Chess of this fact using email by 9am on the Friday immediately preceding matches; it is in players' interests to ensure Coulsdon Chess are notified as early as you know you will be missing.  This email will be acknowledged (please chase if it isn't responded to within a few hours).  Those not on email must notify absence in writing as, although we will do our best to action verbal notifications, we cannot guarantee that they will be processed due to the much higher risk of human error.  Fixtures will be posted on the web site sometime on the Friday to give players the weekend to prepare for their match.  Any pre-booked absences will be noted on the web site as soon as reasonably possible after notification, both to act as a confirmation of the "booking" and to ensure other players are aware when calculating possible opponents for the next round.

5    Any player failing to fulfil a match they have been listed to play will score 0 for that round.  If a player withdraws from a match after 5pm on the day of the game or fails to show at the board, they shall score -1 (an extra point off to a default), unless they subsequently arrive late at the venue on that evening, having attempted to arrive on time and kept Coulsdon Chess informed of their movements by texting the stated Coulsdon Chess contact number, when the standard default score of 0 shall apply.  An opponent who ends up winning by default should expect to be re-paired (if possible) for an alternative game (even after the start of the round) and must accept any opponent offered by the arbiter or deputy.

6    The Time Control for all Coulsdon Chess Summer Cup matches shall be Fischer timings of 90 minutes for all moves plus 30 seconds added per move.

7    Matches must be completed on the evening they are scheduled to be played - if players have to pull out of a match in progress (for any reason) they must either agree a draw with their opponent (if their opponent is happy with this) or resign the match.  Under no circumstances may a match be played on another evening; players must take byes according to the rules when they are unavailable.  

8    Players may start a preferred start time for their matches ranging between 7pm and 7.30pm.  Where a player has quoted a start time before 7.30pm, their opponent may choose to start the clock at that time, provided they have the same or an earlier time quoted on the tournament page.  Failing this, Coulsdon Chess will start white’s clock at 7.30pm. Where both players are missing for a considerable period of time from the start, the arbiter reserves the right to "balance" the clocks at the time the first player arrives, if it is felt that it would be unfair for "white" to have a large deficit when both players had been missing.

9    A player arriving later than 8pm shall be considered to have defaulted, until he/she has texted ahead to notify us that he/she is definitely coming, in which case they shall not lose by default unless their clock runs out of time before they arrive.  Players running late should text the Coulsdon Chess Chess Mobile Number to cover themselves on this rule.

10  In all sections, 3 points will be awarded for a win, 2 for a draw and 1 for a defeat. A bye given by Coulsdon Chess (where an opponent could not be found) will earn 3 points.  Players pre-booking an "absence" according to the rules will be awarded 2 points for the first occasion and 1 point for all subsequent occasions.  Anyone requiring a bye in the final round cannot be awarded more than 1 point unless the bye is booked before the start of the event.  No player may score more than 1 point for a bye where they have previously had a 3 or 2 point bye.  Please also see Rule 4.

11  Coulsdon Chess reserves the right to use fillers to try and ensure an even number of players in each section; players do not have the right to insist on a 3 point bye because they happen to be the player who is being lined up to play the filler.  Coulsdon Chess reserves the right to achieve this by asking a player to "move up" from a lower section for a week when they have a given bye in their section.  Players receiving this bye will only be awarded their points if they play this game, unless the game is deemed to be being played in both sections, in which case both players will be playing for their points in their respective sections.  (This rule is to try and ensure that everyone available gets a tournament game on every week of the competition that they are available). 

12  Final positions shall be decided on the following: 1) Most Points, 2) Sum of Progressive Score, 3) Result of Direct Match(es) between players tied, 4) Sum of Opponent's Scores, 5) Better +/- Rating Performance above their own rating.  Where players are level on points, no tie break shall be used in respect of prize monies which will be shared equally. The tie breaks shall only be used in the case of awarding trophies and medals. 

13  Presentations will be made at the opening night of the new winter chess season in September.  All prize winners are expected to attend.  

14  All players must be GOLD or PLATINUM members of the ECF, regardless of nationality.  Those who do not yet have a FIDE reference code must allow Coulsdon Chess enough time to obtain one from their national federation before pairings are made for the first round their intend to play in.

15  The total prize money for all the sections added together will total approximately 50% of all entry monies taken for the whole event.

The Jim Hale trophy will be awarded to the player with the highest Rating performance about their own rating in any of the 5 sections.  Only those with published FIDE Ratings will be eligible for this trophy.  The winner must have played at least 5 matches.



As soon as you know that you are going to be missing (please do not wait until just before the deadline!), email Coulsdon Chess ( and inform us.  We will acknowledge the email and indicate the bye on the cross table of your section of the competition.  It is your responsibility to ensure that you have received confirmation and that the cross table indicates that bye.

To avoid scoring 0 (or maybe even -1) on any given week, you must have advised Coulsdon Chess by email by 9am on the Friday immediately preceding that round that you will be absent.    

If the cancellation is on the day of the match, it should be emailed to .  Failure to report such an absence by 5pm - or failure to show up for the game will result in -1 being scored for the tournament.  This extra point off will be waived if a player subsequently arrives after their clock has run out on that evening and has been defaulted but had informed Coulsdon Chess that they were running late.



In order to overturn the stated rules it should require the agreement of the controller AND every player in the same section for a retrospective scoring bye, for example, to be allowed. 

 An appeal of any nature must be made by email to Coulsdon Chess by noon on Tuesday (the following day).  The appeal will require reasons and details along with any extra information that you feel appropriate, if the controller deems it reasonable, be forwarded to the other players in the section.  On the basis we do not always get replies from everyone without several emails being sent, we will work on the basis that 100% consensus will have been achieved if nobody has objected by 9am on the Friday morning the same week.  This is the same deadline for byes and withdrawals ahead of the next round.