David Sedgwick wrote: A year ago, the SCCU put forward, and Council accepted, proposals to change the grading limits of the Counties Championships to reflect the new grades, thus leaving the competition essentially unchanged. The proposals were greeted with dire suggestions that they would make life impossible for some Unions and would cause the Counties Championships to collapse.
A year on, what has happened? The 2009-10 competition has been the most successful for some years. The number of nominations for the National Stages was higher then even I anticipated and the number of defaulted matches has dropped significantly.
I'd be delighted if the Lancashire / Greater Manchester issue could finally be resolved. Moreover, if the NCCU and the MCCU feel it appropriate to take steps to improve the Counties Championships within their Unions, by all means let them do so.
However, as far as the Counties Championships overall are concerned, the maxim is simple: IF IT AIN'T BROKE, DON'T FIX IT.
As I mentioned above, the SCCU Counties Championships are over a hundred years old and continue to thrive. They're more than strong enough to see off the current attack on them from the Holowczak and Hewitt Chess Prevention Society.......Why don't you concentrate your energies in building on your achievements, rather than seeking to destroy successful events run by other people?
Alex Holowczak wrote:I put forward a suggestion to get around the problem. I then get told I'm anti-chess
Sean Hewitt wrote:Personalising the discussion does you little credit David and usually is the sign of someone losing the debate. I certainly don't want to destroy any event (it's an absurd suggestion) and although I cannot speak for him I doubt that Alex does either.
Thank you Simon.Simon Spivack wrote:I can't deny that David mentioned names; nonetheless, I read David's comment as a play on Sean's "Down with the chess prevention tax". I doubt any perceived malice was intended.
It was nevertheless quite wrong of me to question Alex's and Sean's motives. I'd like to apologise.
Let me restate my views:
1. The Counties Championships as a whole are in pretty good shape. I don't understand why Alex and Sean perceive a need to make radical changes. There are other aspects of the ECF, and of English chess generally, which are in far greater need of attention.
2. Alex's alternative model seems like the 4NCL Mark 2 to me. We already have the 4NCL proper for those, including Sean, who prefer a competition organised along such lines.
3. Of the 58 teams which were nominated for the National Stages of the current competitions, 17 were from the SCCU. Of the 14 teams which have qualified for the Finals this coming Saturday, 6 are from the SCCU. That doesn't sound to me like "a Southern event with a few foreigners from North of Watford thrown in".
4. If there are problems with the Counties Championships within the MCCU, the NCCU, or any other Union, then those problems are best addressed within that Union rather than from on high. The general tenor of the comments since I last posted has strengthened my belief in that view.
5. The SCCU Counties Championships have a long and proud history and continue to thrive today. They should be retained in their present form as an integral part of the ECF Counties Championships.
I feel I've now had my say, so I don't plan to post any further on this subject unless substantial new argument is put forward.