National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Debate directly related to English Chess Federation matters.
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Alex Holowczak
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Re: National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Post by Alex Holowczak » Tue Apr 30, 2013 10:46 pm

Paul Cooksey wrote:It is not clear to me the benefit of this competition to chess in England justifies the resources the ECF is investing in it.
What resources we're investing in it? It runs on a break even basis.

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IM Jack Rudd
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Re: National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Post by IM Jack Rudd » Tue Apr 30, 2013 10:48 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote:
Paul Cooksey wrote:It is not clear to me the benefit of this competition to chess in England justifies the resources the ECF is investing in it.
What resources we're investing in it? It runs on a break even basis.
Time, effort and so on are also resources, you know.

Alex Holowczak
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Re: National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Post by Alex Holowczak » Tue Apr 30, 2013 10:50 pm

IM Jack Rudd wrote:
Alex Holowczak wrote:
Paul Cooksey wrote:It is not clear to me the benefit of this competition to chess in England justifies the resources the ECF is investing in it.
What resources we're investing in it? It runs on a break even basis.
Time, effort and so on are also resources, you know.
This is true enough. The Controller is standing down this year, after many years of service. I do wonder if another willing Controller will come forward. If not, that's another event I'm lumbered with running... :roll:

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Re: National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Post by John Philpott » Tue Apr 30, 2013 11:18 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote
What resources we're investing in it? It runs on a break even basis.
You might want to look a little more carefully at the forecast and budget presented to the Finance Council meeting a couple of weeks ago......

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Re: National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Post by Alex Holowczak » Tue Apr 30, 2013 11:28 pm

John Philpott wrote:Alex Holowczak wrote
What resources we're investing in it? It runs on a break even basis.
You might want to look a little more carefully at the forecast and budget presented to the Finance Council meeting a couple of weeks ago......
Interesting, I'd never noticed that it wasn't break even. That over-expenditure will be nipped in the bud, so that it is near enough break even.

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Re: National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Wed May 01, 2013 12:08 am

I entered a Harrogate team for the first time this year. No disrespect to the team we played and the controller but I'm not sure I'll be inclined to bother next season. It involved a lot of effort and hassle for a single game of chess.
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Paul Buswell
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Re: National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Post by Paul Buswell » Wed May 01, 2013 4:54 am

Alex Holowczak wrote:
Paul Cooksey wrote:It is not clear to me the benefit of this competition to chess in England justifies the resources the ECF is investing in it.
What resources we're investing in it? It runs on a break even basis.
I'm not certain of the appropriate phrase, but are you not losing intangible resources, insofar as the event (at all four levels) has become a joke, in view of its poor levels of participation? And as such actually damages the ECF's reputation?

I have been banging on to various people over the years that as a start the ECF needs to actually advertise the thing, to do the simple bread and butter stuff - my club, which had taken part in at least one section for several years, never received any invitation to play this season - probably wouldn't have done in view of the perennial and increasing problem of getting to away matches, but ECF needs to tell customers the event is there.

PB

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Re: National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Post by benedgell » Wed May 01, 2013 10:24 am

I'd be more interested in the NCC if it was like an open version of BUCA Teams.

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Re: National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Post by Martyn Harris » Wed May 01, 2013 10:37 am

Paul Buswell wrote:I'm not certain of the appropriate phrase, but are you not losing intangible resources, insofar as the event (at all four levels) has become a joke, in view of its poor levels of participation? And as such actually damages the ECF's reputation?
Difficult not to agree with that.

The point of the National Club seems to be that the ECF are obsessed with champions, and this is another chance to create some. I'd suggest that the slot it occupies should be used to undermine the assertion that the ECF has little interest in grassroots players. Whilst Paul's point about advertising is well made, I don't see that relaunching a better publicised version of effectively the same event would result in a thriving competition.
Andrew Zigmond wrote:I entered a Harrogate team for the first time this year. No disrespect to the team we played and the controller but I'm not sure I'll be inclined to bother next season. It involved a lot of effort and hassle for a single game of chess.
More than anything this is the problem that has to be overcome. Hassle in terms of finding dates and/or venue and/or players available and willing to travel. It is also noticeable that some county teams in the later stages of the inter-counties struggle to find players willing to give up almost a whole day to play a single game of chess.

Part of the success of the 4NCL is down to their providing venues, dates and equipment, and forgetting the bit about bona fides.

Maybe a national jamboree teams competition. Teams of four, grade limited on a whole team rather than individual board basis. Unions arrange one or more heats at venues used for county matches, each heat consisting of 2 rounds played at a rate similar to G105. Teams scoring more than four points say qualify for a final, the organisation of which is the responsibility of the ECF, carrying their qualifying score forwards to the final. Needless to say some qualifying teams may choose not to take up their places. Not an event that would perhaps appeal to many of the proper players who haunt this forum, but possibly of interest to those who fancy the opportunity of playing on a national stage with the minimum of hassle and with some thoughts of success given the randomising effect of small team size and the jamboree format. Who knows?

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Re: National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Post by Angus French » Wed May 01, 2013 10:54 am

John Philpott wrote:Alex Holowczak wrote
What resources we're investing in it? It runs on a break even basis.
You might want to look a little more carefully at the forecast and budget presented to the Finance Council meeting a couple of weeks ago......
... and presumably presented to the Board beforehand. One would have hoped that the Home Director of Chess had looked carefully at the figures for his Directorate, which are clearly presented on the 'Home' sheet of the Excel file for the Budget. (One also hopes that the Directors carefully examine the ECF's accounts before signing them off - an action which I believe is legally significant.)

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Re: National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Post by Alex Holowczak » Wed May 01, 2013 2:00 pm

Angus French wrote:One would have hoped that the Home Director of Chess had looked carefully at the figures for his Directorate, which are clearly presented on the 'Home' sheet of the Excel file for the Budget.
Well, some of them are, you're right. But I'm also responsible for the 'British' sheet.

I realise you wouldn't make mistakes if you were in post, but until I'm voted out, you'll have to put up with mine, I'm afraid.

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Re: National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Wed Jul 03, 2013 10:05 pm

Sorry to revive this one but I've had a brainwave.

I'd more or less decided I wouldn't bother entering a Harrogate team next year and mentioned this at our last committee meeting. Stuart Johnson suggested I could look at the NCCU event instead. And then an idea occurred to me ...

The county championships are zoned in the initial stages so why not get the five Counties unions to do the same. It's up to them how they do their competition (all play all, knockout) but ultimately there's a winning club who go forward to the final which is held at a set venue at a fixed date announced at the start of the season.

The final is a five round all play all (five teams so four games plus a bye during which the team can do some sightseeing) running Friday evening through to Sunday afternoon.

The advantages;

a) More incentive for clubs to enter as the travelling distances won't be excessive unless they go through to the final.
b) With the final at a set venue on a set date the ECF can create some theatre around the event

I'm sure there will be some practical objections but I thought I'd share.
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Roger de Coverly
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Re: National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:44 pm

Andrew Zigmond wrote: b) With the final at a set venue on a set date the ECF can create some theatre around the event
The final is already at a fixed venue (or two) at a fixed date. This is often the Sunday immediately after the Counties finals.

The NCCU in a way undermine the concept of the National Club as a national competition by having their own local version. The other Unions do not, as far as I am aware, bother. At Open level, the National Club was totally undermined by the 4NCL around fifteen years ago. Leagues aren't of the same strength. If you took the top six boards of London League division 1 teams, there would be very few leagues , Yorkshire might be one, who could find a team that could give a reasonable match.

For local competitions, it's unhealthy to have all the strongest players in the same club. For success at national level, you need to be able to form a regional coalition. The 4NCL allows this, whilst the National Club doesn't.

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Re: National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:58 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote: The NCCU in a way undermine the concept of the National Club as a national competition by having their own local version. The other Unions do not, as far as I am aware, bother.
And the NCCU competition seems to have more entries, possibly because teams can enter knowing that the distances will be less. The National Clubs could do a lot worse than tap into this.
At Open level, the National Club was totally undermined by the 4NCL around fifteen years ago.
At Open level I agree that the National Clubs may have outlived its usefulness. I'm sorry if I break confidentiality here but I've had a PM suggesting that Harrogate enter the 4NCL instead. Leaving aside the fact that I work most weekends so the odd Sunday is better for me personally, at present the interest in such events at Harrogate is among the lower echelons. Graded 126 I would almost certainly be on one of the top two boards - there must be an opportunity for a prestige event here.
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Re: National Club Chamionship - what is the point?

Post by John Upham » Thu Jul 04, 2013 10:20 am

What was the last year when the NCC had any substantial prestige and was worth competing for?

Clearly this is an opinion rather than being a concrete fact.

Was it doomed regardless of the emergence of 4NCL as the team competition in the UK?
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