County Championship Finals

Discussion about all aspects of the ECF County Championships.
Neil Graham
Posts: 1114
Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2007 8:36 pm

Re: County Championship Finals

Post by Neil Graham » Thu Jul 12, 2018 10:06 am

The updated titleholders after the 2018 Championships over the last five years are as follows:-

NCCU 11, SCCU 10, MCCU 9, EACU 3, WECU 2 - total 35

This year's additions were NCCU 3, MCCU 2, SCCU 1 & EACU 1.

Mark Murrell
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2018 12:49 am

Re: County Championship Finals

Post by Mark Murrell » Thu Jul 12, 2018 1:07 pm

2019 will indeed be the 100th time a national county Championship has been contested. The previous 99 winners are:

29 Middlesex
22 Lancashire
13 Kent
08 Yorkshire
07 Surrey
06 Cambridgeshire
04 Essex
03 Greater Manchester
03 Warwickshire
02 Oxfordshire
01 Leicestershire
01 Staffordshire

The nationals have not always been contested in the late spring and early summer. Prior to WW2 the Championships were held in the Michaelmas term with qualification being from the season before.

Finals day 2018, which included the 99th contest, saw:
4 reigning Champions attempting to defend their titles, Lancashire (Open) and Leicestershire (U100) succeeded;
first time section Champions in the Minor (Surrey) and U140 (Nottinghamshire);
the Open, Minor Counties and U180 sections all decided on the last game to finish;
the Open decided on tie break for the second season in succession.

Large team chess that caters for all abilities still has its place in an ever increasing and diverse calendar of chess events. I am hoping for even better from the 100th contest in 2019.

Counties wishing to participate in what will be a special year for the Championships should register their interest now with one of the 5 regional Unions. some of which will be taking entries for their pending qualifying competitions.

Mark Murrell
ECF Controller, Counties Championships.

David Sedgwick
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Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2007 5:56 pm
Location: Croydon

Re: County Championship Finals

Post by David Sedgwick » Fri Jul 13, 2018 11:30 am

David Sedgwick wrote:
Tue Jul 10, 2018 8:20 am
Nick Grey wrote:
Mon Jul 09, 2018 9:21 pm
What I will say is that the venue and playing conditions need to take priority over any suggestion of prizes or prize money and as the next one is 100 years the ECF will have to sort it out.
Actually it is the next but one that is the 100th Championships.

All the same, it would be good if the ECF could ensure suitable conditions for the 99th Championships.
I stand corrected. I was reporting what I thought had been said on Finals Day. My apologies to both Mark and Nick.

Mark, thank you for your excellent research. I rather fear that, had you not become the Controller, the forthcoming 100th Championships would have gone unnoticed. Earlier this year many of us fought to save the Championships in their present format. I don't think that any of us realised that they were at risk of being out for 99.

However, the danger has passed, at least for now. Thank you for what you are already doing to ensure that the 100th Counties Championships are truly memorable.

I hope that the next Director of Home Chess will be someone who is an enthusiastic about the Counties Championships as you are.

David Sedgwick
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Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2007 5:56 pm
Location: Croydon

Re: County Championship Finals

Post by David Sedgwick » Fri Jul 13, 2018 12:51 pm

Mark Murrell wrote:
Thu Jul 12, 2018 1:07 pm
The nationals have not always been contested in the late spring and early summer. Prior to WW2 the Championships were held in the Michaelmas term with qualification being from the season before.
That is very interesting and not something of which I was previously aware.

I would need considerable persuading that it was appropriate to move the National Stages from their current April to July time slot. However, your historical research demonstrates that this could be done while still maintaining the Union Stages / National Stages link.

Roger de Coverly
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Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:51 pm

Re: County Championship Finals

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri Jul 13, 2018 1:23 pm

David Sedgwick wrote:
Fri Jul 13, 2018 12:51 pm
However, your historical research demonstrates that this could be done while still maintaining the Union Stages / National Stages link.
Wasn't one of Leonard's wins as Oxford captain in the 1950s played much later in the year, possibly as late as October when his team were back at Oxford?

Mick Norris
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Joined: Tue Apr 17, 2007 10:12 am
Location: Bolton, Greater Manchester
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Re: County Championship Finals

Post by Mick Norris » Fri Jul 13, 2018 4:36 pm

David Sedgwick wrote:
Fri Jul 13, 2018 12:51 pm
Mark Murrell wrote:
Thu Jul 12, 2018 1:07 pm
The nationals have not always been contested in the late spring and early summer. Prior to WW2 the Championships were held in the Michaelmas term with qualification being from the season before.
That is very interesting and not something of which I was previously aware.

I would need considerable persuading that it was appropriate to move the National Stages from their current April to July time slot. However, your historical research demonstrates that this could be done while still maintaining the Union Stages / National Stages link.
I guess like most things to do with the County Championships, there will be a few different views as to the best time of year to play, but no consensus around any specific proposal to get it voted through Council

I think (apart from possibly the Open), you do need to start and finish within the same grading year for eligibility purposes
Any postings on here represent my personal views and should not be taken as representative of the Manchester Chess Federation www.manchesterchess.co.uk

Kevin Thurlow
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Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 12:28 pm

Re: County Championship Finals

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Sat Jul 14, 2018 1:37 am

"I think (apart from possibly the Open), you do need to start and finish within the same grading year for eligibility purposes"

which of course wasn't an issue when the old system applied!

Mick Norris
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Location: Bolton, Greater Manchester
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Re: County Championship Finals

Post by Mick Norris » Sat Jul 14, 2018 8:17 am

It would be an issue if the qualifying was before summer and the final stages in the Autumn
Any postings on here represent my personal views and should not be taken as representative of the Manchester Chess Federation www.manchesterchess.co.uk

Kevin Thurlow
Posts: 2399
Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 12:28 pm

Re: County Championship Finals

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Sat Jul 14, 2018 8:26 am

"It would be an issue if the qualifying was before summer and the final stages in the Autumn"

Yes I know - I was just commenting that it was easier before there was a grading system!

However, if the qualifying (only necessary in some Unions) were in Spring, you could say that the gradings in force then would be carried through to the finals. Leagues (probably) tend to use the summer list for all games in the normal season, even though a January list comes out. So, just specify the grading list to be used for the entire competition.

Neil Graham
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Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2007 8:36 pm

Re: County Championship Finals

Post by Neil Graham » Sat Jul 14, 2018 4:25 pm

Could I take this opportunity to thank Mark, Alex and the team of organisers/arbiters for their work in the finals.

If anyone has any comments I distinctly heard Mark advise people to contact him by e-mail.

I have attended/played in/help organise any number of these events and the weather conditions this year were the hottest I can remember.

Jon Underwood
Posts: 21
Joined: Mon Mar 26, 2018 7:28 pm
Location: Devon

Re: County Championship Finals

Post by Jon Underwood » Thu Jul 19, 2018 9:45 am

Mark Murrell wrote:
Thu Jul 12, 2018 1:07 pm
2019 will indeed be the 100th time a national county Championship has been contested. The previous 99 winners are:

29 Middlesex
22 Lancashire
13 Kent
08 Yorkshire
07 Surrey
06 Cambridgeshire
04 Essex
03 Greater Manchester
03 Warwickshire
02 Oxfordshire
01 Leicestershire
01 Staffordshire

The nationals have not always been contested in the late spring and early summer. Prior to WW2 the Championships were held in the Michaelmas term with qualification being from the season before.

Finals day 2018, which included the 99th contest, saw:
4 reigning Champions attempting to defend their titles, Lancashire (Open) and Leicestershire (U100) succeeded;
first time section Champions in the Minor (Surrey) and U140 (Nottinghamshire);
the Open, Minor Counties and U180 sections all decided on the last game to finish;
the Open decided on tie break for the second season in succession.

Large team chess that caters for all abilities still has its place in an ever increasing and diverse calendar of chess events. I am hoping for even better from the 100th contest in 2019.

Counties wishing to participate in what will be a special year for the Championships should register their interest now with one of the 5 regional Unions. some of which will be taking entries for their pending qualifying competitions.

Mark Murrell
ECF Controller, Counties Championships.
Thanks for your efforts on behalf of Devon - we hope to enter two sections for the 100th event.

Nick Grey
Posts: 814
Joined: Thu Dec 01, 2011 12:16 am

Re: County Championship Finals

Post by Nick Grey » Thu Jul 19, 2018 10:04 pm

I'm hoping my grade falls below 140 so I'm eligible for 4 teams. 5 if we repeat our minor counties success.
Hopefully some other counties can field more teams. I have never played in the U140s competition.

I'm still struggling with the heat and humidity but it will be cooler next season. And no major sporting event getting in the way of Chess.

Alex Holowczak
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Location: Oldbury, Worcestershire
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Re: County Championship Finals

Post by Alex Holowczak » Fri Jul 20, 2018 9:28 am

Nick Grey wrote:
Thu Jul 19, 2018 10:04 pm
I'nd no major sporting event getting in the way of Chess.
Wow, cricket (and its World Cup) really has fallen from the public consciousness.

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