National Stages 2019

Discussion about all aspects of the ECF County Championships.
Ian Thompson
Posts: 2123
Joined: Wed Jul 02, 2008 4:31 pm
Location: Awbridge, Hampshire

Re: National Stages 2019

Post by Ian Thompson » Sun May 12, 2019 10:37 pm

Mike Truran wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 8:59 pm
I have to admit I was there at the time and I don’t recall the BCF trying to “destroy” the 4NCL. But perhaps I didn’t notice. To be fair, they weren’t that supportive either.

But the story of BCF opposition to the 4NCL seems to have entered folklore. It would be interesting to get some background.
I thought the BCF tried to set up their own 4NCL-style league to rival the 4NCL, with the aim that their league would supplant the 4NCL. The BCF league never got going.

Roger de Coverly
Posts: 18090
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:51 pm

Re: National Stages 2019

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sun May 12, 2019 10:44 pm

Simon Brown wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 10:10 pm
Richard got it wrong as well.
In November he reported:-
BCF MANAGEMENT BOARD
The Management Board met on Saturday 18th November 1995 and an SCCU rep has supplied a report. We’ve left one or two details out. It sounds to have been a difficult meeting.
International Director Simon Brown is to resign if he hasn’t already. Pressure of work is one reason, but we gather he would have struggled on had it not been for differences with the President over the BCF’s submission to the DNH. We have no details. There was actually a motion of (?no) confidence in the President, the second one in a few months, and while none were unconfident there were a few abstentions.
The BCF National League, SDB’s pigeon, is now in some doubt. He will try to start it this season, but it won’t be before March and it depends on sponsorship coming through.
Ian Thompson wrote: I thought the BCF tried to set up their own 4NCL-style league to rival the 4NCL, with the aim that their league would supplant the 4NCL. The BCF league never got going.
My memory of the period concurs with Ian's. There was a row between the BCF or perhaps just the BCF Directors and the 4NCL's founder Chris Dunworth. Relations improved when Chris stepped aside to some extent.

Kevin Thurlow
Posts: 2963
Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 12:28 pm

Re: National Stages 2019

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Sun May 12, 2019 10:57 pm

Thanks to Roger and Ian for confirmation. I never doubted my memory.

Interestingly, Chris Dunworth had tried to get involved in Surrey Chess, but the then officers had firmly rebuffed him, so he went off and started the 4NCL. Surrey's loss I think.

However, in an attempt to get back on topic, the County Championships are important. Obviously, eligibility rules are important, but if you can't get enough players out in your county, what do you do?

Roger de Coverly
Posts: 18090
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:51 pm

Re: National Stages 2019

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sun May 12, 2019 11:12 pm

Kevin Thurlow wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 10:57 pm
Obviously, eligibility rules are important, but if you can't get enough players out in your county, what do you do?
If the Competition is sufficiently prestigious, players will find ways of bending the rules. In recent years there were a couple of Oxford players with dual eligibility who turned out for Lancashire in the final stages. "bussed in" as a Greater Manchester commentator would have it.

I doubt it's something that the ECF would contemplate, but if 4NCL squads were deemed to have a home county, that would or could open up a lot more flexibility in eligibility. But perhaps it's a lost cause. I noted that the board 7 for the Manchester Manticores 4NCL team in Telford reappeared at board 3 in the Greater Manchester county team a week later. The Manticores team sets aside the ancient dispute and is formed of Lancs players as well.

Alan Walton
Posts: 1247
Joined: Mon Nov 02, 2009 8:33 pm
Location: Oldham

Re: National Stages 2019

Post by Alan Walton » Sun May 12, 2019 11:41 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 11:12 pm
Kevin Thurlow wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 10:57 pm
Obviously, eligibility rules are important, but if you can't get enough players out in your county, what do you do?
If the Competition is sufficiently prestigious, players will find ways of bending the rules. In recent years there were a couple of Oxford players with dual eligibility who turned out for Lancashire in the final stages. "bussed in" as a Greater Manchester commentator would have it.

I doubt it's something that the ECF would contemplate, but if 4NCL squads were deemed to have a home county, that would or could open up a lot more flexibility in eligibility. But perhaps it's a lost cause. I noted that the board 7 for the Manchester Manticores 4NCL team in Telford reappeared at board 3 in the Greater Manchester county team a week later. The Manticores team sets aside the ancient dispute and is formed of Lancs players as well.
Roger, you will find that Piotr plays for Chorlton in the Manchester league

Roger de Coverly
Posts: 18090
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:51 pm

Re: National Stages 2019

Post by Roger de Coverly » Mon May 13, 2019 12:08 am

Alan Walton wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 11:41 pm

Roger, you will find that Piotr plays for Chorlton in the Manchester league
I wasn't doubting his eligibility, just observing that the Manticores 4NCL team seemed a bit stronger than the Greater Manchester county team.

Jonathan Rogers
Posts: 3868
Joined: Tue Nov 18, 2008 9:26 pm

Re: National Stages 2019

Post by Jonathan Rogers » Mon May 13, 2019 11:43 am

This is a useful list, thanks Roger.

Two corrections:

Keith Brown was the Chief Arbiter in 1996/7, and Bob Wade was called in to do the pairings for 18 teams and 12 rounds. Richard Furness started as Chief Arbiter in 1997/8, at which time two separate divisions of 12 teams started.

Barbican and 4NCL arrangements was initially decided by the (London based) Barbican club, chaired by Gary Kenworthy: Barbican 4NCL was yet to emerge as a separate club for 4NCL purposes only. Gary is therefore best placed to comment on these early years. However, the withdrawal in 1995/6 was at least some way influenced by Gary's belief that Hertford were going to field three or four Barbican regulars. This did not turn out to be Hertford's own understanding, and that in itself partly explains the re-emergence of Barbican the following year.

But it is true that rumours were awash with BCF plans for a takeover - it was the regular subject of conversation in post-London league Barbican matches during 1995/6. And the organisation of 4NCL certainly left a lot of scope for improvement back then. Eg, they really did change the number of rounds after the season had started!!


Roger de Coverly wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 10:03 pm
Mike Truran wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 8:59 pm
It would be interesting to get some background.
Stories of the rival league were sufficiently solid that a team or two, Maidstone springs to mind, withdrew from the 4NCL in anticipation of the BCF forming its own national league. Needless to say, come October, the rest of the 4NCL carried on as normal without the missing teams, who rejoined the following season.

olimpbase has archived the 4NCL results back to the beginning.

1993-94 was the first season. The six competing teams in finishing order being
Invicta Knights Maidstone
Barbican London
Covent Garden
Slough Chess Club
North West Eagles
Bristol Chess Club

The second season 1994-95 had a full compliment of 12 teams.
Again in finishing order
1. Midland Monarchs
2. Slough Chess Club
3. Wood Green London
4. Witney Chess Club
6. British Chess Magazine
7. Barbican London
8. Invicta Knights Maidstone
9. Covent Garden
10. South Wales Dragons
11. Na Fianna
12. Bristol & District

In the third season, 1995-96, it was 14 teams, but note the absence of Invicta and Barbican, both founder members.

1. Slough Chess Club
2. Midland Monarchs
3. Wood Green London
4. British Chess Magazine
5. Witney Chess Club
6. South Wales Dragons
7. Guildford Chess Club
8. Richmond Chess Club
9. Hertford Chess Club
10. North West Eagles
11. Croydon Chess (previously Covent Garden)
12. Na Fianna
13. Bristol Chess Club
14. Newcastle Chess Club

In the fourth season 1996-97, there were 18 teams, but 12 rounds. The arbiters, probably including the late Richard Furness devised some pairing scheme that was a hybrid between a Swiss and an All play All.

Note the reappearance of Invicta and Barbican

1. Midland Monarchs
2. Invicta Knights Maidstone
3. Slough Chess Club
4. Northumbria Vikings
5. Barbican London
6. British Chess Magazine
7. Bristol Chess Club
8. North West Eagles
9. Wood Green London
10. South Wales Dragons
11. Guildford Chess Club
12. Richmond Chess Club
⇓ 13. Wessex Chess Club
⇓ 14. Croydon Chess
⇓ 15. Na Fianna
⇓ 16. Witney Chess Club
⇓ 17. Hertford Chess Club
⇓ 18. Celtic

The following season, there were enough teams for two divisions.

So it was during 1995 that the BCF threatened to set up its own league in competition.

As reported at the time by the late Richard Hadrell.

From the SCCU Archive
https://sccu-chess.com/archive/
Bulletin 1995-96 reporting on the SCCU Exec meeting September 1995.
(6) National League. The BCF is setting up its own National League, starting in January under the direction of Simon Brown, in direct competition with the 4NCL. Dates are to clash with 4NCL ones and it’s clearly meant as a hostile takeover. We’re not sure whether it already has the Management Board’s OK, but if not it seems to be a formality. It stems from deep dissatisfaction with the way the 4NCL’s run, and if your Editor tried to give details he’d be at risk of getting them wrong. Someone said, and no one dissented, that if we’re to have two rival leagues it is important that they clash with each other and not with county matches or other things. The BCF would obviously prefer it if the 4NCL just folded. Someone said the BCF seemed to be rushing things, given that the 4NCL season starts soon and the new League hasn’t been officially announced yet. Someone else said, with doubtful relevance, that it had been in the air for a year or more.

Andrew Zigmond
Posts: 1713
Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2011 9:23 pm
Location: Harrogate

Re: National Stages 2019

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Mon May 13, 2019 1:42 pm

Getting this thread back on track, I hate being at loggerheads with David Sedgwick all the time but last year he told us that the county championships, `are not the ECF's to ruin`. Now he seems to be demanding that the ECF should be imposing heavy handed penalties in a congress in Wales.
Nick Grey wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 9:22 pm
This flagship event is open to all as is, say 4NCL.
The county championships are NOT open to all (and are not designed to be). The union stage silo means that some counties have little to no chance of competing in the national stages, even if they wanted to. One county is prevented from competing as fully as they would like as the county union they belong to won't recognise it.

The county championships has its place and those players who compete in it have every right to be passionate about it. I would not want to take any of that away from them. At the same time they have no right to complain if an arcane structure and pedantic rules are driving players away.
Controller - Yorkshire League
Chairman - Harrogate Chess Club
All views expressed entirely my own

Nick Grey
Posts: 1153
Joined: Thu Dec 01, 2011 12:16 am

Re: National Stages 2019

Post by Nick Grey » Wed May 15, 2019 12:30 am

another selective comment taken out of context. I really think you miss my points on the county championship.
i'm hoping lancs get no teams to the final stages this year.

what is competing about = i'm fully supportive of the minor counties - it has a nice balance - and have a winners 'oscar' from last year.

nice match ups in the semi-finals too. but I hope that surrey win.

Andrew Zigmond
Posts: 1713
Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2011 9:23 pm
Location: Harrogate

Re: National Stages 2019

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Wed May 15, 2019 1:41 pm

Nick Grey wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 12:30 am

i'm hoping lancs get no teams to the final stages this year.
Just because of the actions of a solitary player! I'm well aware my name is second only to his as muck in Surrey due to my absolute temerity of trying to handle that dispute fairly and impartially, as opposed to bending over to Surrey's demands. Given the subsequent behaviour of the Surrey board towards me (and the abusive message one of your captains sent me about the results server) I could say the same thing about Surrey - but thankfully I'm not that petty.
Controller - Yorkshire League
Chairman - Harrogate Chess Club
All views expressed entirely my own

Neil Graham
Posts: 1253
Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2007 8:36 pm

Re: National Stages 2019

Post by Neil Graham » Wed May 15, 2019 3:06 pm

Lancashire have six teams competing and have lost three in their matches so far. Yorkshire and Essex are the two other counties who have six teams in competition. It will be interesting to see how sides progress to the final. I'll give my usual run down in due course at the end of the competitions but just a reminder of how the 35 Championships stood at the end of last season:-

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

At present the NCCU hold three titles, the MCCU two and the SCCU & EACU one each.

User avatar
Christopher Kreuzer
Posts: 7292
Joined: Fri Aug 06, 2010 2:34 am
Location: London

Re: National Stages 2019

Post by Christopher Kreuzer » Wed May 15, 2019 3:19 pm

Andrew Zigmond wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 1:41 pm
Nick Grey wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 12:30 am

i'm hoping lancs get no teams to the final stages this year.
Just because of the actions of a solitary player! I'm well aware my name is second only to his as muck in Surrey due to my absolute temerity of trying to handle that dispute fairly and impartially, as opposed to bending over to Surrey's demands. Given the subsequent behaviour of the Surrey board towards me (and the abusive message one of your captains sent me about the results server) I could say the same thing about Surrey - but thankfully I'm not that petty.
Apophasis

I hope Lancs get teams to the final stages this year! (but not in the U180!) :D

User avatar
Michael Farthing
Posts: 1811
Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2014 1:28 pm
Location: Morecambe, Europe

Re: National Stages 2019

Post by Michael Farthing » Wed May 15, 2019 8:17 pm

Ah thanks Christopher - that gives me in the u140 a pretty good endorsement :-)

Nick Grey
Posts: 1153
Joined: Thu Dec 01, 2011 12:16 am

Re: National Stages 2019

Post by Nick Grey » Wed May 15, 2019 10:54 pm

I was not even commenting on a game of chess dispute a long time ago so why are you raising it again Andrew?

you ought to take up your complaints with the Surrey board with them directly. I have seen nobody from the Surrey board posting such matters against you.

Andrew Zigmond
Posts: 1713
Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2011 9:23 pm
Location: Harrogate

Re: National Stages 2019

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Wed May 15, 2019 11:22 pm

Nick Grey wrote:
Wed May 15, 2019 10:54 pm
I was not even commenting on a game of chess dispute a long time ago so why are you raising it again Andrew?

you ought to take up your complaints with the Surrey board with them directly. I have seen nobody from the Surrey board posting such matters against you.
I assumed that particular incident was the reason for your antipathy towards Lancashire - I have to admit I can't think of any other reason to explain it. But if I was mistaken I apologise.
Controller - Yorkshire League
Chairman - Harrogate Chess Club
All views expressed entirely my own

Post Reply