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Final Weekend Preview

Divisions 3 & 4

Like the final weekend for Divisions 1 and 2, the closing rounds for Division 3 and 4 will see many crucial matches as teams strive to gain promotion or to avoid relegation.

In Division 3 five teams are involved in the promotion battle. They are :- Wessex 2 (12 points), Numerica 3Cs 2 (12), North West Eagles 2 (11), Milton Keynes (11) and Mindsportsltd.com (10). The first three will be particularly keen to attain Division 2 status so that next year they will be able to play on the same weekends as their first teams. If Numerica and Eagles secure promotion it will be a fine double since their first teams were promoted from Division 2 earlier in the month. Both Milton Keynes and Mindsportsltd.com have only been in the league for a short time and promotion for either of them would be a significant achievement.

During the final three rounds there will be no fewer than five matches between the promotion candidates. Although Milton Keynes are currently fourth, they have a good chance of promotion since they have already played all their key rivals and need to obtain points against middle of the table teams Guildford-ADC 3, Bristol 2 and Nidum Knights 1. Wessex 2 and North West Eagles 2 have, on paper, the toughest fixtures since they each still have to play three of their promotion rivals. The promotion issues are unlikely to be settled before the final round when Wessex 2 play Mindsportsltd.com and Numerica 3Cs 2 play North West Eagles 2.

Two teams will be relegated from Division 3 and currently the bottom three places are occupied by White Rose 2 (4 points), Poisoned Pawns 2 (3) and Southern County Stars (3). SCS have yet to meet both White Rose and Poisoned Pawns.

Two rounds remain in Division 4 where Metropolitan (13 points) have a slender advantage over Hilsmark Kingfisher (12) and Wood Green 3 (12), but meet both during the final weekend, whereas Kingfisher and Wood Green each have a match against the weaker ADs 3 (7 points). Two teams will be promoted. Newcomers Hilsmark Kingfisher had a poor first weekend last November, but since then have won six successive matches and must have a good chance of gaining promotion. Success for Metropolitan would also be a fine achievement since it is their first season in the League and they have won their last five matches.

A point for a relegated team to remember is that their status might be maintained if a team from their division or a higher division withdraws from the League. A year ago two teams who were expecting to be relegated were saved in this way.

Richard Furness (4NCL Chief Arbiter)

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