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One Hundred Up

As the final weekend of the ninth 4NCL season approaches, so too does a significant landmark in the League’s history. Round 10 on Sunday 5th May will be the one hundredth round since the inaugural gathering at the Barbican on Saturday 2nd October 1993 when 4NCL founder Christopher Dunworth and arbiter Gary Kenworthy waited apprehensively in the hope that the promised teams would turn up. They did, and Invicta Knights, Barbican, Covent Garden, Slough, North West Eagles and Bristol did battle.

Round 1 was very close. Both Covent Garden v Invicta Knights and North West Eagles v Slough ended as 4-4 draws. Then, as now, Bristol had the knack of getting off to a good start and took the lead by beating Barbican 4½-3½.

In recent years the pattern has been for the top division to be a twelve team all-play-all, but this has not always been the case. The first season was a double round APA with six teams. The next two seasons saw first 12 and then 14 teams playing APAs. Season four had 18 teams playing a twelve round competition. This brought the total rounds played to 46. Since then the top division has had the settled format of eleven rounds, bringing us to 101 rounds by the season’s end on Monday 6th May.

Not surprisingly a number of players who competed on that first day are at the top of the All Time list of Most Appearances. After one correction to the appearances list published a few months ago, the updated list up to the start of the May weekend shows the following players as the "Top Twenty for 4NCL Appearances".

Appearances Player
92 Paul Littlewood
91 Simon Ansell
  Gary Quillan
89 Gavin Wall
  Chris Beaumont
87 Richard Webb
86 Murray Chandler
85 Andrew Law
  John Littlewood
84 Chris Duncan
  Andrew Ledger
83 Richard McMichael
82 Jovanka Houska
81 Chris Baker
  David Tebb
  Peter Sowray
  Richard Bates
80 Melanie Buckley
  Richard Haydon
  John Richardson

Division 1

Pride and Prejudice
Barbican 4NCL 1
White Rose 1
Guildford-A&DC 1
Cambridge Univ. 1
The ADs
Barbican 4NCL 2
Oxford 1
Pandora's Box Grantham
S. Wales Dragons
Guildford-A&DC 2
Poisoned Pawns 1
Jutes of Kent

Division 2

Sambuca Sharks
Warwickshire Select 1
e2e4.org.uk 1
Barbican 4NCL Youth
AMCA Dragons
Kings Head
Poisoned Pawns 2
Anglian Avengers
Wessex 1
Celtic Tigers 1
Bristol 1
White Rose 2
Brown Jack
Guildford-A&DC 3
FCA Solutions 1

Division 3

Rhyfelwyr Essyllwg
Sambuca Black Sheep
Cambridge Univ. 2
Wessex 2
Warwickshire Select 2
KJCA Kings
FCA Solutions 2
The Full Ponty
Sussex Smart Ctls.
e2e4.org.uk 2
Nottinghamshire 1
Nottinghamshire 2
Oxford 2
AMCA Rhinos
Braille Chess Assoc.
AMCA Hippos
Glos. Gambits
Bristol 2
KJCA Knights
Guernsey Mates
Bristol 3
e2e4.org.uk 3
Beauty and the Beasts
Celtic Tigers 2
Oxford 3
Guildford-A&DC 4
AMCA Cheetahs