The role of match captains is mainly administrative, whether or not they play in the match. Duties may vary according to specific competitions, but these notes are intended to cover just those matches which take place in the SCCU County Championships.

These Championships are governed by the SCCU County Match Rules and by the SCCU General Rules, both of which are available on the SCCU Website. It goes without saying that match captains should familiarise themselves with these Rules and with the current FIDE Laws of Chess (and as amended by SCCU Rules, e.g. penalties for sounds emitted by mobile phones). Match captains are also referred to the FIDE Quickplay Finish Rules (including Appendix D together with CAA Guidance) both of which are also on the SCCU Website.

These notes do not make any reference to the selection or booking of venues for the matches, which may or may not fall within a match captain's remit. Their attention is however drawn to the notes entitled Thoughts on Venues which appear in the Fixtures page. Nor have I covered the provision of refreshments which, although I regard as an essential courtesy to opponents, cannot be legislated for other than in the broadest possible terms.


Match Captains should ensure that their players abide by the Fide Laws of Chess, including good conduct, sportsmanship and courtesy at all times. The home match captain should ensure that up to date copies of both the FIDE Laws of Chess and the SCCU Rules are available for consultation during the match if required.

Match captains must abstain from any intervention during play, except where provided for in the list of duties below. They shall give no information or advice to a player concerning the position on the chess board, nor consult with any other person as to the state of the game. Players are subject to the same prohibitions. A captain may however advise a player if they should offer or accept a draw, whether on request from the player or not. In no circumstances may the captain look at any game before giving their decision. The player has the final say over the conduct of his own game, and is not compelled to act upon information given by the captain. The captain cannot act on behalf of any player and his game without the knowledge and consent of that player, except as allowed for in duty 8 below (mobile phones).


Please refer to the detailed rules where quoted for further information.

Before the match

1. At least one calendar month before a match, captains must contact their opposite number with full details of the venue, starting time, proposed time limits and the availability of refreshments (See SCCU County Match Rule 10(d))

2. Select the team, advising all concerned of the full details as in 1. Pay particular attention to the Rules regarding qualification (SCCU General Rule 13), and grading limits (SCCU County Match Rule 5(c)) for which the 1st September list remains in force for the whole season.

On the day

3. For home matches, set up boards, sets, clocks and score sheets

4. Exchange team lists with the opposing match captain and toss for colours (winner White on odd boards (SCCU County Match Rule 16). Team lists must be arranged in descending order of known current playing strength (County Match Rule 15).

5. Make housekeeping announcements and remind all players to switch off their mobile phones. Subsequently, issue warnings to players whose mobiles emit any sound (in the first instance) and penalise second offenders with the loss of their game. (County match Rule 19).

6. Ensure that the clocks of all players with the White pieces are set in motion at the agreed starting time. Ensure that all players are sitting at their correct board with their correct colours. Look out for latecomers/absentees and arrange a substitute if available prior to the 60 minute default time (County Match Rule 18)

During the match

7. If a problem arises both match captains should consult together in order to resolve the matter. If absolutely necessary, both match captains may stop their own clocks in order to achieve this.

8. Mobile phones are allowed in the playing area. However they must be either switched off or switched to silent mode for the duration of play. Match captains must remind players of this requirement before the commencement of play. If a player's phone makes any sound during his game, then: On the first occurrence he will receive a warning. For a second offence by the same player in the same game, the penalty is loss of the game. Note that this loss is automatic and does not involve the opponent of an offender making a claim. Match captains should ensure that such penalties are enforced, as the disturbance is usually to all present, not just the opponent of the offender.

After the match

9. Agree the detailed results with the opposing match captain and send the completed results sheet to reach both the SCCU County Match Controller and the SCCU Webmaster within seven days of the match. If any of the games is subject to a 10.2 Quick Play Finish claim, the claim together with the final position and game score (if available) should be submitted by both match captains to the County Match Controller.

David Smith
SCCU County Match Controller
26th August 2013