Since Registration Night there has been a few additional teams registered bringing the total number of teams registered to 52 an increase of 4 from 2022. Whilst this is great because our prime objective is always to grow both the number of teams and individuals playing our game as possible. 52 represents a not insignificant growth in numbers when you consider the challenges that pubs and clubs and their customers (us!) face in these difficult economic times.
The increase in numbers has, though, presented us with a dilemma, but in keeping with our desire to have as many teams as possible playing we have decided to add an extra section this season. This means that there will be 10 teams in the Premier/A section and in the B section with 8 teams in Sections C,D,E, and F. This means that instead of 18 matches in these sections there will be only 14 with 4 byes in each.
It’s worth reminding all teams that positioning in sections is, as it has been for several years, based on the aggregate score of the top 8 players from the previous season assuming they have registered again for 2023. In a few cases some teams and some players did not play in 2022, so where appropriate averages from their last full season (2019) has been taken into account. This process means that some teams may find themselves in a higher or lower section this year than last and this is simply because either their average determines that or because their registered players have changed. The handicap system used for the Premier and A section is based on exactly the same principles.
On the positive side, for those sections with less teams we have been able to arrange the sections so that they free up 2 teams from each section each week which will give the opportunity to either arrange friendlies or even an informal “supplementary league” with teams from across 4 sections having the opportunity to play each other. We will have to sort out how best that is organised a bit later, it will probably need to be sorted by the teams affected, but it does give the opportunity for all teams to play 18 games and every week over the season if they want to..
As a result of these considerations the production of the fixtures etc has been slightly delayed, but all of the details will be with you by the end of April. The league season proper starts on May 10th with the 1st round of the team 8’s knockout handicap competition scheduled for the week earlier May 3rd and the draw for those games will be published on the website and to the respective teams in the next few days.