England Korfball League statement – Covid-19
The Competitions Subcommittee (CSC) would like to thank the korfball community for their patience while, with the support of the EK Board, they have worked hard to review the situation regarding the completion of the 2019/20 England Korfball League.
EKL Premier Division 2019/20 Season
At the point that matches were suspended on the 13th March 2020, there were approximately four playing weeks left of the regular season plus the play-offs at the Grand Finals to determine the overall Champion.
There is continued uncertainty as to the timings and form that the easing of current government restrictions will take, however the EK Board and CSC understand the need to provide as much clarity as possible to our clubs and members. In this context, the 2019/20 season cannot be completed normally, and the CSC, with the support of the EK Board, have the made the decision that the EKL Premier Division will be frozen as at 13th March 2020 and there will be no Grand Finals play-offs.
Having reviewed the EK Premier Division table as at 13th March 2020, the CSC have noted that the top 3 teams have not played the same number of matches and not played each other the same number of times. Therefore, no team will be declared EKL Premier Division Champions.
Europa Cup and Europa Shield
The International Korfball Federation (IKF) is currently considering the status of the Europa Cup and Europa Shield for the 2020/21 season. The IKF is collating opinions of the national organisations and has requested responses by 14th May 2020. They expect to make a decision by 1st July 2020.
The CSC will be contacting the relevant teams for their opinions in the next few days.
EKL Premier Division relegation and promotion from the EKL Promo Divisions
As of 13th March 2020, Highbury KC are placed 10th in the EKL Premier Division and without any points, so they will be relegated to the EKL S&E Promo Division for next season.
In line with the EKL Premier Division, the EKL Promotion Divisions will also be frozen at 13th March 2020 and no playoffs will take place. The top placed team in each Division as at 13th March 2020, Birmingham City KC and Norwich City KC, will qualify for promotion to the EKL Premier Division next season. For determining the top placed team in each Division, the normal league rules apply for teams equal on points i.e. the result of the head to head match between the 2 teams is the tie breaker. Therefore, the EKL Premier Division will have 11 teams in it for one season only. At the end of the 2020/21 season, two teams will be relegated from the EKL Premier Division to the EKL Promo Divisions in order to revert to a 10 team EKL Premier Division.
Regional and Area Leagues
In the context of the decision of the CSC to freeze EKL 2019/20 divisions as they were on the 13th March 2020, the CSC strongly recommends that all Regional and Area leagues do the same.
EKL Premier and Promo Divisions Next Season
The CSC will continue to actively monitor the Government plans to ease current restrictions and will review actions accordingly. The 2020/21 season can only commence when it is safe to do so and clubs have had sufficient time to train under normal conditions. The format of the competition will be announced when the situation is clearer. The CSC has scheduled a review meeting in June.
During this time, the health and wellbeing of our community is of the utmost importance. Please continue to follow the official guidance and look after yourself and each other.