Rules for the Lavers Ladder
Lavers Ladder Rules – revised 23 August 2021
1. The tournament will run from September until the Grand Final, which will usually be on the
first week in June.
2. It is assumed that all club members will wish to play. If not, please contact
3. All participating members will be placed on the ladder, with the lowest-rated on the top
rung, working down in rating order to the highest-rated on the lowest occupied rung.
4. Players who wish to join (or rejoin) the ladder in mid competition may do so, on the first free
rung at the bottom.
5. Matches between players will consist of 2 games, one as White, one as Black, 10 minutes per
player per game (no increment).
6. The player ACCEPTING the challenge gets choice of White or Black in the first game.
7. There may only be one match involving any given pair of players, per night.
8. The results of all matches should be recorded on the provided sheets (in case of problems
that need to be resolved later, and to show who has been actively playing).
9. Challenges may be issued between 7.50pm and 10.00pm.
10. Each player’s card is marked with values for the net imbalance between challenges issued (I)
and accepted (A).
11. On arrival, each player intending to play Ladder matches that evening should take a peg and
place it on the “0” (zero) location, dark side facing out (this signifies they are available for a
12. The priority for issuing challenges is
a) A single player waiting for a Ladder match to finish before they can issue a challenge;
b) The player with the smallest (most negative) value of (I) minus (A);
c) For players with the same value of (I) minus (A), the one on the lowest rung of the
13. The person with the greatest priority may issue a challenge, or “pass”. (Note that the players
first to finish their match will have to wait at least until another match has finished as well –
unless there is an odd player waiting – since return matches are not allowed on the same
14. The person making the challenge moves their peg one step to the right, i.e. the net value of
(I) minus (A) increases by 1. The person being challenged moves their peg one step to the
left, i.e. the net value of (I) minus (A) decreases by 1. Both pegs are turned so the light side
faces out (signifying a match in progress; players cannot issue or accept challenges until the
match is complete).
15. Once the person with highest priority had issued a challenge, or passed, the person with the
next highest priority makes their choice, and so on.
16. If all players currently available (dark coloured pegs) have passed, they may not issue
challenges until the Ladder situation has changed (e.g. a match finishes so pegs change from
dark to light, or a new player arrives).
17. The priority order for people who may be challenged is:
a) You may not play more than one match against the same opponent in one night;b) Anybody up to 4 rungs above you; if there are no suitable players then
c) Anybody 5 or more rungs above you; if there are no suitable players then
d) Anybody on a rung below you.
18. Note that it may be worth passing to wait if there are potential opponents up to 4 rungs
above, who are currently playing a match. However you might be challenged before they
When a match is finished
19. Record the outcome on the results sheet provided.
20. If the challenger wins the match, then
a) If his opponent was up to 4 rungs above when the challenge was issued (you need to
remember this!), the challenger moves to the rung occupied by his opponent. His
opponent and people on any intervening rungs all move down one rung.
b) If his opponent was elsewhere on the Ladder (above or below), the challenger swaps
places with the person one rung above the challenger.
21. If the challenged player wins the match, the challenged player swaps places with the person
one rung above the challenged player.
22. If the match is drawn, the player card positions do not change.
23. The player pegs are turned so that the dark side faces out (available for play).
24. If a player does not wish to play further matches that evening, their peg is removed from
Inactive participants (“rung blockers”)
25. At the beginning of each calendar month (or as soon as practicable thereafter), any
participant who has not played in at least one Ladder match will be moved down 5 rungs.
26. If a participant has been inactive for two consecutive calendar months, they shall be
removed from the Ladder (they can rejoin later, on the first free rung at the bottom).
27. The date of the Grand Final will usually be on the first Monday in June, and will be
announced at least a month in advance.
28. Challenges may be issued as normal between 7.45pm and 9.40pm.
29. Any participant not present by 8.15pm shall have their card removed from the Ladder (if
they arrive later, they rejoin at the first available rung below the active participants). Active
participants move to close up any gaps.
30. A player on the top rung of the Ladder, who is displaced by someone who did not play them
(i.e. a person on rung 2 goes up by winning a match against someone else), has a “displaced”
marker attached to their card.
31. The “displaced” marker remains on a player’s card until they lose a Ladder match.
32. When the last of the normal matches has been completed (probably about 10.20pm), the
top two players (not on the top rung) who have been displaced will have the opportunity to
challenge for the top rung. The lower of the two firstly challenges the other displaced player.
The winner between these two players then challenges the player on the top rung.
33. These challenges will be resolved by a single “Armageddon” game, where Black has 5
minutes, White has 6 minutes but must win. The player on the top rung choses which colour
they will play.
34. At the end of the evening, the player on the top rung of the Ladder is the winner!