League format will stay as it is

PUBLISHED: 13:10 23 August 2007 | UPDATED: 21:46 29 May 2010

THE Ridley League clubs settled their big annual argument last week with an overwhelming vote to maintain the north-south divide - after a warning that a merger could spell disaster. A proposal to scrap the two geographical sections was lost, six clubs in

THE Ridley League clubs settled their big annual argument last week with an overwhelming vote to maintain the north-south divide - after a warning that a merger could spell disaster.

A proposal to scrap the two geographical sections was lost, six clubs indicating that they could not tackle the increased travel.

Retiring league secretary John Morris conceded: "Having all the top teams in one division is a great ideal - but is it worth losing a third of our member clubs for?"

Concern at the length of the season persuaded clubs to adopt a proposal designed to avoid "pre-playoff" fixture congestion. Ties for first place in the end-of-season sub-tables (singles, mixed, women and dominoes) will be resolved, if possible, on the league results between the teams involved.

Another move, to base Combined Trophy positions on Formula 1-style weekly marking in the sub-tables, was shelved. Trevor Bright, the proposer, was asked to monitor the system next season.

The league is to clamp down hard on match defaulters. Teams failing to turn up without an acceptable reason face losing the points in all four sub-tables, and conceding the fixture 8-0 - in addition to the current fines.

Lee Bright (Black Horse, White Roding) is the new league secretary, with treasurer Trevor Bright also assuming responsibility for fixtures. Richard Ward (Dunmow Cricketers) joins the committee, replacing Darren Laudrum (Chequers, Felsted). The league is looking for a volunteer to handle press reports.

League fees (£35) are due at the registration meeting on Tuesday, August 28 (8.30) at the Chequers. Any would-be member club unable to attend should ring Lee Bright in advance on 01279-321670.

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