County Championship Rules

Discussion about all aspects of the ECF County Championships.
Roger de Coverly
Posts: 17253
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:51 pm

Re: County Championship Rules

Post by Roger de Coverly » Mon Feb 03, 2014 12:10 pm

Mick Norris wrote: What is the latest practical date for the draw, given that venues need to be booked?
The earliest practical date is March 16th for SCCU teams, as their final round is on the 15th. Many quarter final matches involve neutral venues, so even if S1, M1 and N1 are always at home for the quarter-final, that's no help until you know the opposition.

Alex Holowczak
Posts: 8468
Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 5:18 pm
Location: Oldbury, Worcestershire
Contact:

Re: County Championship Rules

Post by Alex Holowczak » Mon Feb 03, 2014 1:29 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:The earliest practical date is March 16th for SCCU teams, as their final round is on the 15th.
Except it isn't.

The SCCU deliberately give themselves 2 weeks before the nomination deadline, in order to make sure that they are going to nominate counties who actually want to take up nomination. The SCCU's nominations are likely to arrive about a week later if everyone replies punctually.

I think the SCCU's approach is very responsible in his regard.

Roger de Coverly
Posts: 17253
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:51 pm

Re: County Championship Rules

Post by Roger de Coverly » Mon Feb 03, 2014 1:52 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote: The SCCU deliberately give themselves 2 weeks before the nomination deadline
If the nomination deadline is 31st March and the ECF don't know until then even how many teams there will be in each competition, then that's the point at which the draw and pairings should be announced.

Alex Holowczak
Posts: 8468
Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 5:18 pm
Location: Oldbury, Worcestershire
Contact:

Re: County Championship Rules

Post by Alex Holowczak » Tue Feb 04, 2014 6:51 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Alex Holowczak wrote: The SCCU deliberately give themselves 2 weeks before the nomination deadline
If the nomination deadline is 31st March and the ECF don't know until then even how many teams there will be in each competition, then that's the point at which the draw and pairings should be announced.
Again, I agree, but it is not what the Unions want.

Neil Graham
Posts: 1127
Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2007 8:36 pm

Re: County Championship Rules

Post by Neil Graham » Sun Feb 09, 2014 2:16 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Alex Holowczak wrote: The SCCU deliberately give themselves 2 weeks before the nomination deadline
If the nomination deadline is 31st March and the ECF don't know until then even how many teams there will be in each competition, then that's the point at which the draw and pairings should be announced.
As I read the rules, every Union should have reported to the ECF in December the number of nominations that they wish to make in each competition. If a Union asks for a nomination and then fails to fill that place it is liable to a fine of £100 for each unfilled nomination. The draw could therefore take place theoretically on January 1st.

I assume therefore that each Union will have already asked their counties whether or not they wish to compete in the national stages. For the SCCU and MCCU who have a full and comprehensive county programme this shouldn't create a problem, the WECU and EACU have a smaller county fixture list whereas the NCCU use their tried and trusted method of playing no county matches at all and nominating Yorkshire and Lancashire for everything.

So there should be no trouble in making the draw at the 4NCL weekend. I trust the £100 default fine may concentrate certain counties minds.

David Sedgwick
Posts: 3071
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2007 5:56 pm
Location: Croydon

Re: County Championship Rules

Post by David Sedgwick » Sun Feb 09, 2014 7:08 pm

Neil Graham wrote:As I read the rules, every Union should have reported to the ECF in December the number of nominations that they wish to make in each competition. If a Union asks for a nomination and then fails to fill that place it is liable to a fine of £100 for each unfilled nomination. The draw could therefore take place theoretically on January 1st.

I assume therefore that each Union will have already asked their counties whether or not they wish to compete in the national stages. For the SCCU and MCCU who have a full and comprehensive county programme this shouldn't create a problem, the WECU and EACU have a smaller county fixture list whereas the NCCU use their tried and trusted method of playing no county matches at all and nominating Yorkshire and Lancashire for everything.

So there should be no trouble in making the draw at the 4NCL weekend. I trust the £100 default fine may concentrate certain counties minds.
I think it may be more a case of the new rule having concentrated the minds of certain Unions.

It would appear that at least one Union has been in the habit of asking for nominations which they had no real intention of taking up, safe in the knowledge that the only consequence would be to cause inconvenience to other Unions. Such behaviour will now cost them £100 a time.

Mick Norris
Posts: 6983
Joined: Tue Apr 17, 2007 10:12 am
Location: Bolton, Greater Manchester
Contact:

Re: County Championship Rules

Post by Mick Norris » Sun Feb 09, 2014 8:30 pm

Neil Graham wrote:I assume therefore that each Union will have already asked their counties whether or not they wish to compete in the national stages. For the SCCU and MCCU who have a full and comprehensive county programme this shouldn't create a problem, the WECU and EACU have a smaller county fixture list whereas the NCCU use their tried and trusted method of playing no county matches at all and nominating Yorkshire and Lancashire for everything.
The forthcoming Yorks v Lancs matches were discussed at Buxton at breakfast this morning - I gathered dates and venues have been agreed for at least the Open and U180 matches - I know you don't like the NCCU, but they do actually play each year

Made a pleasant change from discussing the ECF/ECU/FIDE/MCF Presidency
Any postings on here represent my personal views and should not be taken as representative of the Manchester Chess Federation www.manchesterchess.co.uk

Neil Graham
Posts: 1127
Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2007 8:36 pm

Re: County Championship Rules

Post by Neil Graham » Sun Feb 09, 2014 8:34 pm

David Sedgwick wrote:
Neil Graham wrote:As I read the rules, every Union should have reported to the ECF in December the number of nominations that they wish to make in each competition. If a Union asks for a nomination and then fails to fill that place it is liable to a fine of £100 for each unfilled nomination. The draw could therefore take place theoretically on January 1st.

I assume therefore that each Union will have already asked their counties whether or not they wish to compete in the national stages. For the SCCU and MCCU who have a full and comprehensive county programme this shouldn't create a problem, the WECU and EACU have a smaller county fixture list whereas the NCCU use their tried and trusted method of playing no county matches at all and nominating Yorkshire and Lancashire for everything.

So there should be no trouble in making the draw at the 4NCL weekend. I trust the £100 default fine may concentrate certain counties minds.
I think it may be more a case of the new rule having concentrated the minds of certain Unions.

It would appear that at least one Union has been in the habit of asking for nominations which they had no real intention of taking up, safe in the knowledge that the only consequence would be to cause inconvenience to other Unions. Such behaviour will now cost them £100 a time.
Possibly the £100 fine to counties who default a match may also have an effect. Last year Nottinghamshire had to play a preliminary round in the Under 180 competition and when the quarter-finals were reached one of the counties defaulted thus making the earlier match totally unnecessary. My guess is that the cost of the earlier game would be at least £300 (32 players from different parts of the country meeting at a central venue). Perhaps the defaulting county should have paid £150 to Nottinghamshire and our opponents?

Kevin Williamson
Posts: 113
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2009 6:24 pm

Re: County Championship Rules

Post by Kevin Williamson » Sun Feb 09, 2014 8:46 pm

David Sedgwick wrote:
Neil Graham wrote:As I read the rules, every Union should have reported to the ECF in December the number of nominations that they wish to make in each competition. If a Union asks for a nomination and then fails to fill that place it is liable to a fine of £100 for each unfilled nomination. The draw could therefore take place theoretically on January 1st.

I assume therefore that each Union will have already asked their counties whether or not they wish to compete in the national stages. For the SCCU and MCCU who have a full and comprehensive county programme this shouldn't create a problem, the WECU and EACU have a smaller county fixture list whereas the NCCU use their tried and trusted method of playing no county matches at all and nominating Yorkshire and Lancashire for everything.

So there should be no trouble in making the draw at the 4NCL weekend. I trust the £100 default fine may concentrate certain counties minds.
I think it may be more a case of the new rule having concentrated the minds of certain Unions.

It would appear that at least one Union has been in the habit of asking for nominations which they had no real intention of taking up, safe in the knowledge that the only consequence would be to cause inconvenience to other Unions. Such behaviour will now cost them £100 a time.
Looking at the last two seasons’ results it’s not clear which Union(s) you had in mind.

A quick count indicates that EACU & NCCU each declined one nomination last year, but as for defaulted matches the culprits were evenly spread: MCCU (2), NCCU (1), EACU (1), SCCU (1). Only the WECU fulfilled its obligations.

The season before the SCCU declined one nomination. Defaulted matches were attributed to EACU (1), SCCU (3), NCCU (2) and MCCU (1). Again, the WECU had a clean record.

Source: http://www.sccu.ndo.co.uk/1213/matchbcf.htm & http://www.sccu.ndo.co.uk/1112/matchbcf.htm

So, apart from in the west of England the problem appears to be widespread.

Rules are rules and I have no problem abiding by them, but perhaps the real issue here is the gradual decline of County chess. Some smaller counties are not awash with players - getting 16 (or 12) willing souls to play during the regular chess season can be testing enough; but a different matter completely during the summer months when other attractions are on offer. Maybe some counties entered with the best of intentions, but when it came to the actual match, possibly weeks later, the captains found that half their regulars were not available.

I wonder whether the threat of financial penalties is really the best way to encourage teams to participate.

Neil Graham
Posts: 1127
Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2007 8:36 pm

Re: County Championship Rules

Post by Neil Graham » Sun Feb 09, 2014 8:54 pm

Mick Norris wrote:
Neil Graham wrote:I assume therefore that each Union will have already asked their counties whether or not they wish to compete in the national stages. For the SCCU and MCCU who have a full and comprehensive county programme this shouldn't create a problem, the WECU and EACU have a smaller county fixture list whereas the NCCU use their tried and trusted method of playing no county matches at all and nominating Yorkshire and Lancashire for everything.
The forthcoming Yorks v Lancs matches were discussed at Buxton at breakfast this morning - I gathered dates and venues have been agreed for at least the Open and U180 matches - I know you don't like the NCCU, but they do actually play each year

Made a pleasant change from discussing the ECF/ECU/FIDE/MCF Presidency
That's unfair. I have no like/dislike of any particular Union. What I do have is a strong opinion about Union representation into the Counties Championship. To date (according to the ECF website), the SCCU have played 38 county matches, the MCCU 35, the EACU 22, the WECU 8 and the NCCU nil. It is wrong that counties should be given "free passes" into the competition. I would suggest a system possibly as follows :-
1-3 entries at the Union stage entitles the Union to one place in the national stages
4-6 entries at the Union stage entitles the Union to two places in the national stages
7 and above entitles a Union to three places in the national stages

if this provides less than 8 competitors in any competition extra places to be offered to the Unions with most entrants. Alternatively offer places in the national stages on a 50% basis eg 1-2 entrants = 1 place; 3-4 = 2 places; 5-6 = 3 places etc.

Angus French
Posts: 1491
Joined: Thu May 15, 2008 1:37 am
Contact:

Re: County Championship Rules

Post by Angus French » Sun Feb 09, 2014 9:33 pm

Kevin Williamson wrote:I wonder whether the threat of financial penalties is really the best way to encourage teams to participate.
So do I, especially when they're set at £100.

Alex Holowczak
Posts: 8468
Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 5:18 pm
Location: Oldbury, Worcestershire
Contact:

Re: County Championship Rules

Post by Alex Holowczak » Sun Feb 09, 2014 10:21 pm

Angus French wrote:
Kevin Williamson wrote:I wonder whether the threat of financial penalties is really the best way to encourage teams to participate.
So do I, especially when they're set at £100.
According to this website: http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/bill ... -1900.html

£100 today was worth £50 in 1989/90.

I don't know when the rule was brought in, but I'm told it's an old rule. David Sedgwick will probably know if the rule was introduced pre or post-1990.

MartinCarpenter
Posts: 2396
Joined: Tue May 24, 2011 10:58 am

Re: County Championship Rules

Post by MartinCarpenter » Mon Feb 10, 2014 10:48 am

You're welcome to be annoyed about the theoretical logic of the NCCU 'qualifying' stages. Until relatively recently there was only one of Lancashire/Yorkshire going through, which helped the matches to mean more. Of course they don't need that much help to mean something :)

But there were defaults at the national stages etc, and I've always presumed it was simple pragmatism to let both counties qualify. After all, there really aren't very many counties who can field potentially title winning Open/U180 teams anymore. Lancs/Yorks both can.

I'm curious - when is the U180 match scheduled?

David Sedgwick
Posts: 3071
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2007 5:56 pm
Location: Croydon

Re: County Championship Rules

Post by David Sedgwick » Mon Feb 10, 2014 12:18 pm

Kevin Williamson wrote: Looking at the last two seasons’ results it’s not clear which Union(s) you had in mind.

A quick count indicates that EACU & NCCU each declined one nomination last year, but as for defaulted matches the culprits were evenly spread: MCCU (2), NCCU (1), EACU (1), SCCU (1). Only the WECU fulfilled its obligations.

The season before the SCCU declined one nomination. Defaulted matches were attributed to EACU (1), SCCU (3), NCCU (2) and MCCU (1). Again, the WECU had a clean record.
The SCCU did not decline a nomination in 2012. An SCCU county did, but the place was taken up by another SCCU county.

The SCCU was extremely concerned about the three defaults in that year and took steps to avoid a repetition in 2013. We had some success, but my own county let us down, much to my chagrin.

Angus French wrote:
Kevin Williamson wrote:I wonder whether the threat of financial penalties is really the best way to encourage teams to participate.
So do I, especially when they're set at £100.
The £100 penalty is not designed to encourage teams to participate. It's designed to discourage counties and Unions from saying they intend to participate when they lack the resources to do so, with the consequences set out by Neil Graham above.

Alex Holowczak wrote:£100 today was worth £50 in 1989/90.

I don't know when the rule was brought in, but I'm told it's an old rule. David Sedgwick will probably know if the rule was introduced pre or post-1990.
I can't remember exactly, but I'm pretty sure that the £50 penalty for a match default was in force, and enforced, when I was SCCU President from 1993-95.

For some reason ECF County Match Controllers subsequently stopped applying the penalty until recently.

Andrew Bak
Posts: 831
Joined: Sun Jan 02, 2011 11:48 am
Location: Bradford
Contact:

Re: County Championship Rules

Post by Andrew Bak » Wed Feb 12, 2014 12:57 am

MartinCarpenter wrote: I'm curious - when is the U180 match scheduled?
2nd March at Bradford Latvian Club

Post Reply