Victory for the Dinosaurs

Discussion about all aspects of the ECF County Championships.
Neil Graham
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Re: Victory for the Dinosaurs

Post by Neil Graham » Fri Apr 06, 2018 2:09 pm

Mick Norris wrote:
Fri Apr 06, 2018 12:47 pm
Neil Graham wrote:
Fri Apr 06, 2018 12:13 pm
Can I enlarge on Alex's reply about the MCCU Counties Championship?

The situation in 2010/11 was as quoted but by 2012/3 the number of entrants to the Open Section had fallen to two (Warwickshire and Staffordshire) and by 2013 just one (Staffordshire).

The MCCU website states:- Seasons 2013-6. There was one entry only for the Open tournament and counties agreed that all teams that had entered for the Open or Minor Counties should compete for the MCCU team county championship using East and West zones followed by finals matches between top teams in each zone. Staffordshire the only entry for the Open were nominated for a place in the national stages and remaining teams competed for places in the national stages of the Minor Counties tournament in 2014 and 2015, but not in 2016.

Consequently Notts played Staffordshire in the MCCU Final in 2013/14 winning for the first time since 1975. However Notts continued into the Minor Counties whilst Staffordshire played in the Open. We know what happened in 2015/6; Staffordshire didn't want to partake of these arrangements and declined to play the other MCCU Counties and went into the Open where they defaulted! This is why the rule was changed to reflect the situation as it was then - and now all Midlands Counties must play in the Midlands Championships to gain entry to whichever section they have opted for
Or to put it another way, because Staffs defaulted in 2016, the MCCU have no nominations to the 2018 ECF Open even though they had 1 county who wished to take up that nomination :roll:
Manchester were perfectly happy to play in this format is 2013/14 & 2014/15 when they qualified for the Minor Counties. The rules weren't keeping pace with what was happening over the board. The refusal of Staffordshire to play in the Midlands Championship 2015/16 resulted in the Rules being amended to reflect the actual situation.

Alan Walton
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Re: Victory for the Dinosaurs

Post by Alan Walton » Fri Apr 06, 2018 2:31 pm

The point is the likelihood the GMan team wouldn't be eligible for the minor counties since the average grade will have likely been over 180 (I was volunteering as captain, and had good confirmations from alot of the 200+ players that they would consider playing; at one stage I was playing on board 14), so if we couldn't enter the Minor Counties then the why wasn't our request for Open nomination allowed considering nobody else wanted it

David Pardoe
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Re: Victory for the Dinosaurs

Post by David Pardoe » Sat Apr 07, 2018 8:49 pm

Alan,
I asked the same question of the MCCU at the start of the season, and was told that it should be possible to claim the MCCU nomination, provided the request came in by Dec 31st I kept raising this at MCF council meetings, but was told that you were now not available to captain the team.
Can I suggest you speak to Ray Sherlock the county controller for the MCCU, and lets see if we can get that vacant slot, which is being wasted at present.
Incidentally, , neither the West nor the EAST of England Unions are represented at present in the OPEN section. Why not let both Unions enter a combined counties team in the Open section..
There are some possible ways of increasing participation with a bit of imagination.
I am not in favour of the changes being proposed for reasons already stated.
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Roger de Coverly
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Re: Victory for the Dinosaurs

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sat Apr 07, 2018 11:47 pm

David Pardoe wrote:
Sat Apr 07, 2018 8:49 pm
Why not let both Unions enter a combined counties team in the Open section..
There are some possible ways of increasing participation with a bit of imagination.
The ECF have no interest in weakening the eligibility criterion for the Counties Championship as evidenced by the complete absence of any questions to that effect in the consultation. There are various 4NCL squads that might be considered to mostly represent WECU or EACU, but they wouldn't be allowed to form the backbone of a squad for the counties competition.

A franchise system would be radical. The county associations retain the exclusive rights to enter teams to the national competitions, but beyond that, they can organise teams themselves or pass on the option to anyone enthusiastic enough to recruit a squad which doesn't have to pass stringent birth or residence rules.

Andrew Zigmond
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Re: Victory for the Dinosaurs

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:48 pm

David Pardoe wrote:
Sat Apr 07, 2018 8:49 pm

Can I suggest you speak to Ray Sherlock the county controller for the MCCU, and lets see if we can get that vacant slot, which is being wasted at present.
His name is Peter Sherlock (or was last time I corresponded with him at any rate).
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Jon Underwood
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Re: Victory for the Dinosaurs

Post by Jon Underwood » Sun Apr 08, 2018 2:18 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Sat Apr 07, 2018 11:47 pm
David Pardoe wrote:
Sat Apr 07, 2018 8:49 pm
Why not let both Unions enter a combined counties team in the Open section..
There are some possible ways of increasing participation with a bit of imagination.
The ECF have no interest in weakening the eligibility criterion for the Counties Championship as evidenced by the complete absence of any questions to that effect in the consultation. There are various 4NCL squads that might be considered to mostly represent WECU or EACU, but they wouldn't be allowed to form the backbone of a squad for the counties competition.

A franchise system would be radical. The county associations retain the exclusive rights to enter teams to the national competitions, but beyond that, they can organise teams themselves or pass on the option to anyone enthusiastic enough to recruit a squad which doesn't have to pass stringent birth or residence rules.
They're not that stringent surely? I'm qualified to represent counties in four of the five unions.

I can't see how you could let just WECU and EACU field a combined team. There are plenty of other counties who have no hope in the Open section.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Victory for the Dinosaurs

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sun Apr 08, 2018 2:37 pm

Jon Underwood wrote:
Sun Apr 08, 2018 2:18 pm
There are plenty of other counties who have no hope in the Open section.
That is the problem that the consultation didn't really consider. Alternatively it did, as if there are only 8 counties (to include Greater Manchester) who feel confident enough to enter teams, just make them a permanent "premier" knock out Open that they don't have to qualify for. Amalgamate the Minor and U180 into a competition for average under 180 if Middlesex, Surrey etc. second team players feel left out.

Andrew Zigmond
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Re: Victory for the Dinosaurs

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Sun Apr 08, 2018 6:04 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Sun Apr 08, 2018 2:37 pm
Jon Underwood wrote:
Sun Apr 08, 2018 2:18 pm
There are plenty of other counties who have no hope in the Open section.
That is the problem that the consultation didn't really consider. Alternatively it did, as if there are only 8 counties (to include Greater Manchester) who feel confident enough to enter teams, just make them a permanent "premier" knock out Open that they don't have to qualify for. Amalgamate the Minor and U180 into a competition for average under 180 if Middlesex, Surrey etc. second team players feel left out.
Up to a point the ECF couldn't consider anything; one reason David Sedgwick chose the title that he did for this thread was that he considers the counties championship to be `not the ECF's to ruin`. The main bone of contention seems to be this supposedly sacred link between the union and national stages.

For a county to be nominated for the national stages it has to be a recognised county union. There is no bar to unions allowing composite county teams to compete in their union stages (the NCCU considered this a few years back) but they couldn't then nominate that team for the national stages.
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David Pardoe
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Re: Victory for the Dinosaurs

Post by David Pardoe » Sun Apr 08, 2018 6:15 pm

I think the idea here is to allow representation at the national stages for all regions, therefore having combined teams for East And West of England might be worth considering.... just for the OPEN section that is/.
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David Sedgwick
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Re: Victory for the Dinosaurs

Post by David Sedgwick » Sun Apr 08, 2018 8:20 pm

Andrew Zigmond wrote:
Sun Apr 08, 2018 6:04 pm
Up to a point the ECF couldn't consider anything; one reason David Sedgwick chose the title that he did for this thread was that he considers the counties championship to be `not the ECF's to ruin`. The main bone of contention seems to be this supposedly sacred link between the union and national stages.
I have deliberately refrained from contributing to this thread since my initial post, as I wanted to let the dust settle a little. However, I would like to clarify one or two points arising from your paragraph above.

I chose the thread title as a gentle dig at Alex Holowczak, who coined the term "dinosaurs" as a light-hearted description of those who have opposed his proposed reforms in a number of areas, not just the Counties Championships.

I can't trace ever having used the word "ruin" in this context. I did use a similar word in relation to you and the Union Championships, but I subsequently withdrew the phrase in question and extended an apology which you graciously accepted.

It is true that I regard the link between the Union Championships and the National Stages as fundamental and not something which Alex should ever have called into question.

Andrew Zigmond
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Re: Victory for the Dinosaurs

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Sun Apr 08, 2018 10:00 pm

David Sedgwick wrote:
Sun Apr 08, 2018 8:20 pm
Andrew Zigmond wrote:
Sun Apr 08, 2018 6:04 pm
Up to a point the ECF couldn't consider anything; one reason David Sedgwick chose the title that he did for this thread was that he considers the counties championship to be `not the ECF's to ruin`. The main bone of contention seems to be this supposedly sacred link between the union and national stages.
I have deliberately refrained from contributing to this thread since my initial post, as I wanted to let the dust settle a little. However, I would like to clarify one or two points arising from your paragraph above.

I chose the thread title as a gentle dig at Alex Holowczak, who coined the term "dinosaurs" as a light-hearted description of those who have opposed his proposed reforms in a number of areas, not just the Counties Championships.

I can't trace ever having used the word "ruin" in this context. I did use a similar word in relation to you and the Union Championships, but I subsequently withdrew the phrase in question and extended an apology which you graciously accepted.

It is true that I regard the link between the Union Championships and the National Stages as fundamental and not something which Alex should ever have called into question.
Firstly and on reflection it was perhaps unnecessary to refer to you by name in the above post and for this I apologise. Obviously the dust is settling and we need to move on from a discussion that became slightly passionate. At the same time I think there are some matters arising that needs to be considered.

I was actually focusing on the `not the ECF's` part of the quotation and it's worth noting that at that time I thought you were referring to the national stages, rather than the union stages. I agree that how the union stages are run is a matter for each individual union and I have defended that principle several times (both as controller and a private individual).

If the link between the Union and National stages is fundamental, where does the authority of the ECF start and stop, particularly as national stage decisions do have a knock on effect to the union stages and vice versa? We have had a proposal (albeit not a particularly credible one) that the ECF should allow a composite East/ West team to contest the Open (which in my view would be against the ethos of the competition). My point is that if the ECF were in favour they would not have the authority to bring that in.
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Nick Grey
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Re: Victory for the Dinosaurs

Post by Nick Grey » Sun Apr 08, 2018 11:09 pm

One of the most disturbing points of the debate is the reason most counties do not enter the Open is because they cannot field a competitive team.

I would say that 12 out of 16 teams in division 1 of the 4NCL will not win. It can be like that in some league competitions.

Every year 100s of football teams enter the FA Cup. At lower tier level 1000s of teams enter their County Association competitions. This is sport and the underdog has a chance. Slim but so much fun and enjoyment when you win. Local heroes for decades.

We are too hung up on grading. And if we put our minds to it we could come up with plate competitions. Just try not to have some artificial constructs over content of teams.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Victory for the Dinosaurs

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sun Apr 08, 2018 11:20 pm

Nick Grey wrote:
Sun Apr 08, 2018 11:09 pm
I would say that 12 out of 16 teams in division 1 of the 4NCL will not win. It can be like that in some league competitions.
They could if they had the finance to hire the necessary players. That's the problem with the Counties Competition, that the counties with fewer resources are inhibited by the rules in trying to recruit stronger players.

The sentiment was expressed by a Devon organiser as to why they should enter a competition where they could travel a hundred miles or more to play in a match they had little or no chance of winning.

Andrew Zigmond
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Re: Victory for the Dinosaurs

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Sun Apr 08, 2018 11:52 pm

Nick Grey wrote:
Sun Apr 08, 2018 11:09 pm
One of the most disturbing points of the debate is the reason most counties do not enter the Open is because they cannot field a competitive team.

I would say that 12 out of 16 teams in division 1 of the 4NCL will not win. It can be like that in some league competitions.

Every year 100s of football teams enter the FA Cup. At lower tier level 1000s of teams enter their County Association competitions. This is sport and the underdog has a chance. Slim but so much fun and enjoyment when you win. Local heroes for decades.

We are too hung up on grading. And if we put our minds to it we could come up with plate competitions. Just try not to have some artificial constructs over content of teams.
Most players don't mind having the odd match where they will be heavily outgraded from the off or occasionally travelling long distances for the sake of a single game. It's the combination of the two that tends to be a bit of a problem. Taking the Yorkshire League as an example you may have to travel to the other side of the county for the sake of a match you'll probably lose 1-7 but generally you should only have to do it every other year (they'll travel to you in the intervening year).

Regarding Roger's post I don't exactly want to be seen as encouraging counties to try it but the eligibility rules can be worked around if need be (although if the law allowing something became an ass the ECF would be under pressure to change it). However surely allowing counties to shop around for hired guns makes a mockery of having a COUNTIES championship and doesn't exactly level up the playing field.
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Roger de Coverly
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Re: Victory for the Dinosaurs

Post by Roger de Coverly » Mon Apr 09, 2018 12:04 am

Andrew Zigmond wrote:
Sun Apr 08, 2018 11:52 pm
However surely allowing counties to shop around for hired guns makes a mockery of having a COUNTIES championship and doesn't exactly level up the playing field.
Yorkshire have vastly more players than Bucks. On the one occasion we met, arguably Yorks employed a very dubious board order.

https://www.sccu-chess.com/archive/9900/matchbcf.htm

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