Players’ Rules of Engagement for the Noble Game of Conkers at the
Ashton Conker Club World Conker Championships:
- All Conkers and Laces are supplied by Ashton Conker Club. Laces must not be knotted further or tampered with. Each player is given a new conker and lace at the start of each game. Players may not re-use conkers from earlier games.
- The game will commence with a toss of a coin, the winner of the toss may elect to strike or receive.
- A distance of no less than 8" or 20cm of lace must be between knuckle and nut.
- Each player then takes three alternate strikes at the opponent’s conker.
- Each attempted strike must be clearly aimed at the nut, no deliberate mis-hits.
- The game will be decided once one of the conkers is smashed.
- A small piece of nut or skin remaining shall be judged out, it must be enough to mount an attack.
- If both nuts smash at the same time then the match shall be replayed.
- Any nut being knocked from the lace but not smashing may be re-threaded and the game continued.
- A player causing a knotting of the laces (a snag) will be noted, three snags will lead to disqualification.
- If a game lasts for more than five minutes then play will halt and the "5 minute rule" will come into effect. Each player will be allowed up to nine further strikes at their opponents nut, again alternating three strikes each. If neither conker has been smashed at the end of the nine strikes then the player who strikes the nut the most times during this period will be judged the winner.
There are two stewards in charge of each game and their decision is final, except in the case of an unresolved query or dispute between Player and Steward, in which case the Chief Umpire will be called and his decision shall be absolutely final.
DUTIES OF OFFICIALS
- To ensure that stewards (referees) are familiar with the rules and order of play.
- To act as judge in any dispute and to make the final decision. (Small pieces of skin/shell left on the string should be judged 'out'. It must be large enough to hit).
- To maintain the agreed rate of play and ensure that hold-ups are kept to a minimum.
- To keep the ring clear of all non-participating players and to ensure that 'press' etc. do not interfere with play.
- To register competitors as they arrive.
- To maintain the smooth running of each game.
- To ensure that the rules are followed.
- To record the result of each game and forward to the Chief Recorder.
- To judge at their discretion any 'snags'.
- To time each game (not to the second) and to bring in the 'five minute rule’.
- To examine any conker which slips over the knot, and to declare a replay if necessary.
- To refer any dispute over quality of conker, snags or rules to the Chief Umpire.
- To collect laces and conkers from competitors together with loser’s identity number/tabard.
- To oversee the registration of players.
- To facilitate the movement of players to their playing area at the appropriate times.
- To liaise with stewards.
- To maintain the agreed order of play.
- To assist with the order of events: finals, presentations, raffle draw etc.
- To assist the Competition Secretary in his duties.
- To organise the registration area.
- To collect, photocopy and return any sponsor forms.
- To ensure that players are ready in the collecting ring at the appropriate times.
- To try and locate any missing players!
- To keep the collecting ring clear of any 'knocked-out' players and spectators other than those authorised.
- To record results as they come in from each game using prepared sheets.
- To prepare cards for ensuing rounds ready for stewards.
- To keep score of individuals from teams as they are knocked out.