This season we have 51 teams in the four Divisions, three more teams playing than last year, so we have had to use the 14-team weekly grid, rather than the 12-team grid. Having 51 rather than the maximum of 56 teams indicates the return of that well-known team, FREE WEEK, in most Divisions (sorry, Division 3!).
Royal Dynasty continue to sponsor us, and the Royal Dynasty Tournament will be held in Bathgate Academy on Sunday 2nd February 2014. The Edinburgh Closed tournament will be on Sunday 8th December 2013, at Penicuik. The Edinburgh Schools tournament will be held early in 2014.
This season the people who have won the last seven or so Premier League individual averages (David Atkins of North Merchiston 1 from 2007 (I think!) to 2011, including with 100% in 2008; Christopher Wheeler of Murrayfield 1 with 100% in both 2012 – at just 12 years of age! - and 2013) will not be playing in the Edinburgh League, so we will have a new Premier League individual champion. And with other changes in the composition of both Murrayfield 1 and North Merchiston 1, the teams which have won the last 11 Premier League championships, the destination of the Premier League Championship is less certain than in previous years.
Looking at slightly broader horizons than just the Edinburgh League, this season the Scottish National League has expanded from three Divisions to four Divisions of eight teams, which I think it the greatest number of teams in this the fourth season of the SNL. It will feature five (itself a record) teams from the Edinburgh League.
This is the second year of inputting match scores to the online scoring system, devised by Dr Robert Inder, the 2013 Player of the Year. Physical scorecards are to be kept until the end of the season, but are no longer to be posted to the Match Secretary.
May everyone have a happy and rewarding season, no doubt punctuated by a goodly amount of subordinate hand fist-clenching!