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Published 1 Jan 2017

News in the 2015-6 season

Ameet Ghasi British Blitz Champion

31 Jul 2016. Ameet Ghasi (Lincs) won with 9 points from 11 games. GM Keith Arkell (Worcs) shared second place on 8 points in this tournament at the British Championships at Bournemouth.

Cannock and District League

11 Jul, Ray Dolan reports. Sutton Coldfield were League champions. Rushall and Lichfield shared the Division 2 title and Rugeley won Division 3. Two new clubs, Coleshill and Norton Canes will join next season and the league will have four divisions in 2016-7. The Robert Ward trophy was won by Rich Wiltshir (Rushall) and the Plate by A (Sandy) Wilson (Boldmere).

Medals for Midland senior GMs

3 Jul, In the World Senior Championships at Dresden, England A won bronze for team position behind Germany 1st and Armenia 2nd. There were individual medals for Mark Hebden (gold) for 7½/9 on board 3 and Arkell (silver) with 6/7.

County team championships: Worcestershire and Nottinghamshire teams win titles

2 Jul, ECF website reports. Worcestershire under-140 won its first ever national final beating Surrey. In the all Midlands under-120 final Nottinghamshire beat Warwickshire. Lincolnshire in the minor counties' final lost out to Norfolk. The national county team champions are Yorkshire, soundly beating Middlesex. See county matches national page for scores and links to full Midland match results.

MCCU annual meeting

25 Jun. Derbyshire hosted the annual meeting at Rolls Royce, Derby. There were few changes in officers. Andrew Davies (Staffs) takes over from David Levens (Notts) as Junior Director and Eunice Dolan (Staffs) takes over from Drag Sudar (Notts) as one of the two non-executive directors. Minor changes were proposed by Notts and Derbys to the county team competition rules were approved. The union also agreed to adopt the safeguarding policy, procedures and code of conduct recently circulated by the ECF.

Jim Friar

13 Jun. Jim Friar, 2015-6 captain of Worcestershire's 2015-6 Minor counties team died on after a short battle with illness at home on 27 May. A requiem mass to celebrate his life at St Wulstans & St Thomas of Canterbury, Stourport-on-Severn, was attended by well over two hundred mourners including over twenty chess players from at least three counties. Tributes to Jim can be viewed on the ECForum. Our condolences to his wife, Teresa, and gifted chess-playing sons James and Joseph.

Four Midland teams in county champ finals

11 Jun, Paul Sharratt and ECF report. In the minor counties, Lincs beat Cambs; Worcs beat Notts in the u140 reversing the earlier MCCU stage result, and there will be a an all-Midland final in the u120 — Notts-Warks. In the u100, Notts lost to Essex.

England 2016 Olympiad team

6 Jun, ECF website reports. Michael Adams, David Howell, Nigel Short, Luke McShane, and Gawain Jones are in the Open and the women's team is: Jovanka Houska, Dagne Ciuksyte, Akshaya Kalaiyalahan, Sarah Longson and Kanwal Bhatia.

Midlanders win in South Lakes Congress

5 Jun, ECF website reports. Keith Arkell (Worcs) won first and Mike Surtees shared the second prize in the Open. karl Potter (Leics) shared second in the Major, Rich Wilshir (Staffs) shared second in the Intermediate and Steve Rush (GMC) shared second in the Minor 2 tournament.

Joseph McPhillips wins at Atherton

31 May, ECF website reports. Joseph was top seed and duly won the Open section of this rapidplay event. Fellow Bolton club member Nick Barnaby shared first prize in the u165 competition.

County team quarter finals

21 May. In the minor Counties, Lincolnshire beat Essex. Worcestershire u140 had thumping victory over Kent (and were lucky to escape a reversal of the result after two of their players were found not to have been cleared for play) and Nottinghamshire beat Hertfordshire in spite of being a man down. These results set up an all-MCCU semi final between Worcs and Notts. Leics u100 lost by a single point to Essex at Peterborough and their minor counties team lost to Cambridgeshire. Warwickshire u180 and Nottinghamshire u160 lost to Surrey teams and Lincolnshire u120 lost to Norfolk. Nottinghamshire u120 beat Surrey and Warwickshire u100 lost to Kent.

Cheddleton pipped to 4NCL title

2 May, Rhys Cumming reports. Cheddleton, lying second in the championship pool, lost unexpectedly to White Rose I and then to the chmpionship winners Guildford I. Thre Cs, Oldham and Grantham Sharks in the Demotion pool were not relegated to division 2 finishing first and third respectively. Warwick Select I also survived to stay in Division 2.

First national stage county result in

23 Apr. In the preliminary round of the Minor Counties competition, Lincolnshire beat Cornwall at Yate, Glos. Lincolnshire will face Essex in the quarter final.

Capacity Nottingham Congress

17 Apr, Neil Graham reports. GM Keith Arkell was 1st in the Open with a clean score of 5 points with six players in joint 2nd place on 3½ points. David Williams (Derbys) won the Major, Marcel Taylor (Radcliffe & Bingham) the Intermediate and Robert Crater (Nottingham Univ) and Nathan Cragg (Ashfield) won the Minor. The event attracted 170 players.

ECF meeting leaves fees unchanged

16 Apr, ECF website reports. At its Finance Council meeting in London, the English Chess Federation voted to leave membership fees unchanged and use reserves to finance some of the new initiatives. The meeting approved 3-year terms for elected directors and some committees in a bid to ensure greater continuity. From 2017, games in the national stage of the Open County teams competition will be FIDE-rated.

Cyril Johnson

3 Apr. Ray Dolan writes. Cyril Johnson passed away on 1st April 2016 aged 69. The funeral service will be held at St Peter & Paul's Parish Church, Syston at 12 noon on 22 April. Cyril was an Honorary Life Vice President of MCCU, a member of the MCCU Board, notably as Events Director and Meeting Chairman.  The contributions he made over many, many  years to the chess world, both in the Midlands, and ECF and BCF Boards, were amazing. He will be sadly missed. Cyril is survived by Julie who was always by his side at chess events. Our heart felt condolences to Julie. There is also a short tribute from John Philpott on the ECF website.

Bolton Easter congress

27 Mar, Mick Norris and Rod Middleton report. The Open was won by Stephen Jones, 5 points, ahead of Mike Surtees (Great Lever) on 4½ points. Dean Hartley (Amber Valley) with 4 points won the Major and the Knights competition was won by Jason Widdup (Morecambe). The associated one-day Busy Persons Blitz saw Andrew Horton (3Cs, Oldham, GMC) win all eight games with Stephen Jones trailining on 7 points coming second. Eighty players took part. More details for the MCF website.

MCCU Annual meeting

CEO Ray Dolan, President has fixed the date and venue for the annual; meeting: Saturday 25 June starting at 2pm at the Rolls Royce Social Club, The Pavilion, Moor Lane, Allenton, Derby DE24 9HY.

Midlands teams in 4NCL

20 Mar, 4NCL website reports. After rounds 5 and 6 of the 4 Nations Chess league, Cheddleton are top of Division 1A beating 3Cs, the Oldham based club, and Guildford 2. 3Cs are mid-table. In Dividion 1B, Grantham Sharks are also mid-table drawing with Blackthorne Russia and losing to Sussex Martlets.

Midlands nominations for national stages

18 Mar, controller reports. Staffordshire have been offered the U100 M3 place but have declined because of other commitments. Leics have agreed to take Staffs' place and have been nominated by the MCCU.

2015-6 Midands County team nominations
Section M1 M2 M3
Open Staffs    
Minor Notts Leics Lincs
u180 Warks    
u160 Notts G Manch  
u140 Notts Derbys Worcs
u120 Notts Warks Lincs
u100 Notts Warks Leics

Nottinghamshire dominate in Midlands Junior county teams

7 Mar, David Levens reports. In this year's competition Nottingham again dominated. In the under 11s section for teams of twenty, the final scores were as follows: Nottingham A 56½/60; Northants 27; Nottingham B 24½; Lincolnshire 13. The Girls event for teams of twelve over 3 rounds, the results were Nottingham A 30½/36; Lincolnsire 21; Nottingham B 3½ The Under 9s for teams of twelve was a much closer affair: Nottingham A 28/36; Northants 24½; Nottingham B 23; Nottingham C 14; Lincs. 13; Nottingham D 5½

Warwickshire's weekend

6 Mar. Team captain John Fahy accepts MCCU's offer to nominate Warks u180 for the national stage.
5 Mar. Warks u180 beat Notts in that section's only match to take the under-180 title. The last match in the Minor counties resulted in a close finish between Lincs and Worcs with Lincs coming out winners. In the under-120 section Warwickshire beat Lincs in another closely fought match and Staffs beat bottom-of-table Worcs. In the under-100 competition Staffs defaulted their last match against Notts.

Nottinghamshire win the Mildands Championship

27 Feb, Neil Graham reports. With a hotly contested match against Worcestershire, Nottinghamshire take the Midland Counties Championship with a narrow win. Wins by their u180 and u100 teams next week could give them a clean sweep! In the only other match Warks u120 trounced Worcs

Nottinghamshire win Midlands u140 title

20 Feb. Notts beat Derbys to take the u140 title and Worcs beat Lincs to clain a possible thir national nomination. In the u100, Notts beat warks and Staffs beat Leics, giving Notts the chance of a further Midlands title on 5 Mar.

Nottinghamshire sweep away u120 opponents on way to Midlands title

13 Feb. Notts, playing away at Redditch soundly beat Worcs.

County matches: Nottinghamshire win u160 Midlands title

6 Feb. Three matches this weekend. Lincs beat Warks in the minor counties to leave three teams battling for the third national place. In the u140, Notts beat Worcs leaving top and third national place to be decided in matches on 20 Feb. In the u120, Staffs drew with Lincs to gain their first match point.
23 Jan. Notts beat Warks to take the u160 title at Bramcote. Worcs played their first fixture in the u140 for three years going down to leaders Derbys. In the u100, Warks beat Leics.

Stockport Rapidplay

31 Jan, from Stockport & DCL website. Joseph McPhillips (Bolton) shared first prize in the Open with Robert Shaw (Macclesfield). The event was held at The Davenport Hotel and attracted over 130 entries. Rod Middleton, Fiona Green, John Waine, Ray Bradney, Peter Taylor and Jeff Mason controlled.

First County matches of 2016

9 Jan 2016. Warks gain their first match points in the minor counties competition with a narrow home win over Leics. Notts playing away in the u140 tournament have a clear win against Lincs.

Midlands counties nominations for ECF stages

23 Dec 2015, Peter Sherlock reports. The MCCU nominations of county teams for the national stages are: Open one place Staffordshire; Minor three places to be determined; under-180 one place Warwickshire; under-160 two nominations to be determined; under-140 two places to be determined; under-120 three places to be determined; under-100 two places to be determined. In the under-160, -140 and -100, the MCCU can offer a third nomination if other unions do not fill all the places for the quarter finals.

County matches

5 Dec. Leics beat champions Lincs in the Minor, Lincs u120 had a thumping win against Worcs, and Notts u120 beat Staffs.
28 Nov, Jon Lonsdale reports. The u160 match between GMC and Warks was drawn with double defaults on board 16.
21 Nov. In the first reported of three matches this weekend, Leics beat Worcs narrowly in the minor counties. In the u100 competition, Warks had an easy win over Staffs.

Midlands juniors in World Youth Campionships

6 Nov, David Levens reports. England fielded two Midlands players in the championships held at Halkidiki, Greece: Aditya Munshi from Nottingham (under-12 open) and Thivyaa Rahulan (under-12, girls) from Newcastle-under-Lyme. Aditya of Nottinghamshire scored 6/11 in a very tough section. Thivyaa fared less well, scoring 3 out of 11. However, this event is extremely tough in all sections, as even in the Under 12s there a few titled players.

Notts forge ahead in the county u120 competition

7 Nov. Notts beat Greater Manchester in the u160 counties with Manchester conceding two defaults. Notts won their second u120 match to lead their table. Staffordshire have withdrawn from the u160.

Midlanders lead in British Rapidplay Championship

1 Nov. IM Ameet Ghasi (Warks) and GM Mark Hebden (Leics) were joint winners on 9 points from 11 games. IMs Daniel Fernandez (Gtr Manchester) and Simon Ansell (London) followed closely on 8½ points. Pawel Golomowski (Lincs) won the major section with 9½ points.

News from county teams

31 Oct. In the minor counties, Notts beat Lincs.
14 Oct. Notts u100 start their season with a convincing win.
23 Oct. Warwickshire have withdrawn from the u140 competition.
18 Oct. In first u140 result, Derbys beat Lincs narrowly. Nottinghamshire are the first under-120 team to win. In the under-160 competition, Staffordshire have defaulted next week's match against Warwickshire.

Worcestershire first to report win

10 Sep, Jim Friar & Robert Richmond report. In the local Derby in the Minor Counties competition, Worcs narrowly beat Warks and Leics drew with Notts.

Chess on the move

10 Sep, David Levens reports. Notts CA is running an all-day event to raise money for the charity Mind at Nottingham Railway Station.

County team fixtures published

3 Sep, Peter Sherlock. The draft programme for the 2015-6 season is published and minor updates made to the list of captain's contacts. The big shock is the withdrawal of Greater Manchester from the Open/Minor competition. Derbys, who have been struggling to field a competitive team last season have also withdrawn. To compensate ther is more competition for the u140 with Derbys and Worcs fielding teams this year.

Joseph Mc Phillips scores IM norm

28 Aug, ECF website reports. Bolton junior player Joseph McPhillips scored his norm in Kecskemet, Hungary.

Correspondence Chess News

26 Aug. Warwickshire A were third on 9½ one point behind winners Essex A, who beat Yorkshire A on tie-break in the Ward Higgs competition of the Counties & District Corresponsdence Chess Championship. Staffordshire shared third place in the Division 2 Sinclair competition. In Division 3, the Butler Thomas competition, Warwickshire C were second behind Surrey B. The National Correspondence Chess Club is offering free introductory membership for 2015.

ECF Direct members' representatives

17 Aug, ECF website reports. The national body seeks nominations for each of its membership categories by 16 September.