March 24, 2017
The Irish Championships this year will take place in the West County Hotel in Ennis from the 29th July to the 6th August. Obviously great news for local players that the Irish will run in Ennis. To the best of my knowledge this is the first time the Championships has been held in Ennis. Entry is available via the Irish Chess Union website. To be eligible to play in the main event requires a minimum rating of 1900 on the June 2017 rating list. There are ancillary events running that are open to all.
Entry for the Ennis Congress which takes place May 12th to 14th is also available online via the ICU site.
March 14, 2017
Congratulations to Oleg Korneev who won a very strong Galway Masters section on a score of 5 from 6 last weekend. Alex Lopez finished in second on 4.5 and Alex Baburin and Craig Pritchett finished in 3rd/4th a half point further back. Christopher Young won the Major on 5 while Hugh O Connor scored a perfect 6 from 6 to win the Minor. Full results are available at the Galway Chess website.
March 13, 2017
Details of this years Ennis Open have been received from John Cassidy. The event takes place in the usual venue of the West County Hotel from May 12th to 14th. There are two sections an Open and an U1400. Entry fee is €35 for adults and €25 for juniors. Contact John Cassidy on 087 2495913 for more info. Who will be added to the Champions List this year?
Flier for the tournament courtesy of Philip Foenander – ENNIS CHESS CONGRESS 2017
Online entry is available at the Irish Chess Union website.
March 7, 2017
Gonzaga had a clean sweep at the weekend winning all 4 of their matches to finish in clear first place in the National Club Championships. The other qualifying places went to St Benildus and Trinity.
Top seed Sebastian Maze recovered from a loss to Killian Delaney to take the Mind Sports blitz event by just a half point, with Delaney in second and Stephen Moran in third.
March 6, 2017
Details received from Pete Morriss re the Galway Chess Congress which takes place this weekend 10-12th March. Online entry is available at the Galway chess site
Sounds like a strong line up of players for the event with GMs Korneev and Baburin and 3 IMs (Lopez, Pritchett and Heidenfeld) already confirmed.
March 3, 2017
The Irish Mind Sports Championships Blitz event is taking place tonight in Dublin. Its 4 rounds in and Killian Delaney is already demonstrating his formidable blitz skills as he is the only player on 4 out of 4. Those results include a win over the top seed GM Maze. The Irish Chess Union website is carrying live updates from the event. Still 5 more rounds to go in that event.
The National Club Championships gets underway tomorrow and it should be a good event. I’m sure there will be results updates on the ICU website if not live games.
March 2, 2017
Posts prior to 2017 have now been archived. They are still available to read, just password protected. If anyone wants the password just drop me an email. I will archive occasionally as I go along but will post an update any time I do.
February 26, 2017
Details received from John McMorrow re the upcoming National Club Championships which are being held in the Gresham Hotel, Dublin next weekend 4th and 5th March. Running alongside the NCC is the Irish Mind Sports Championship for U1600 players. On the Friday night the Irish Mind Sports Championships blitz event will take place. Its a 9 round 3 minute +2 sec aside event with a good prize fund. Looks like an excellent line up of events for the weekend.
John also sent on details of this years Irish Championships which are returning to Limerick for the first time since 2013. The venue will be the Savoy Hotel which is a great location for the tournament. Round times have been changed from 2pm to 3pm and the event is already shaping up to be a strong one.
Brochure for NCC and Irish Mind Sports
Brochure for Irish Championships 2017 – Apparently the venue for this years Irish has changed to the West County in Ennis owing to lack of availability in the Savoy. Obviously good news for any Ennis chess players, I think its the first time Ennis has hosted the Irish.
February 20, 2017
Nigel Short retained his Bunratty Masters title over the weekend on a perfect 6 from 6 score. Both Alex Lopez and Richard Bates had a good tournament and finished in joint second /third on a score of 5. Alex Lopez was on 5 from 5 going into the last round where he had his only loss, to Nigel Short. Richard Bates lost to Alex but did have wins over 3 GMs.
Mikhail Pavlov won the Challengers, Aram Hakobyan won the Major while Eoin Callinan and Hieronymus Van DerBelt tied for first in the minor. Full list of prizewinners is on the Bunratty Chess website.
February 16, 2017
For those of you playing in Bunratty this weekend here is a nice game to warm you up for the tournament. For anyone else just enjoy a well played game. Jan Heinrich had a nice victory in the recent Gonzaga event with a win over a 2400+ rated FM. He has kindly sent on the game with some annotations.
Heinrich, J.(1980) – FM Nilsen, J.B.(2428) Gonzaga, 2017 [Notes by Heinrich]
1.d4 f5 2.b3 (my intention was not to go for main lines. I saw this idea from IM Alex Lopez in his game against Kieran Moynihan at Mulcahy Chess Congress 2017) 2… Nf6 3.Bg5 e6 4.e3 b6 5.Be2 Be7 6.Bf3 c6 7.Ne2 0-0 8.h4 d6 9.c4 e5 10.g3 h6 11.Bxf6 Bxf6 12.Nbc3 Qe8 13.Qd2 Na6 14.h5 (other options are 14.0-0-0 or 14.Bg2) 14…Nc7 15.0-0-0 e4 16.Bg2 b5! (a very good move. Black is trying to open the queenside for his pair of bishops and play against the weak white king) 17.cxb5 cxb5 18.Nf4 a5 19.Kb1 Qf7 (maybe 19..Bb7 or 19..a4 are stronger options) 20.Bf1 Bd7 21.Rc1 Rfc822.Be2 d5 23.Rhg1 Bg5 24.Rc2 a4 (another move is 24…b4 25.Na4 Nb5 26.Rxc8+ Rxc8 27.Rc1 Na3+28.Kb2 with a fairly equal position) 25.b4 a3 26.Rgc1 Be7 (probably 26.-Bxf4 is better not allowing white his next small combination )
Heinrich -Nilsen (2017) 27. White to play
27.Nxe4! dxe4 28.Rxc7 Rxc7 29.Rxc7 Bd6 30.Rc5 (I missed 30.Rb7! which is much stronger than 30.Rc5. Now I am offering my opponent to take my Rook on c5 with his bishop.) 30… Bxc5 31.bxc5 (so I’m the exchange down for a pawn but my connected c and d pawns are becoming monsters! )
Heinrich – Nilsen (2017) Position after Whites exchange sacrifice.
30…Bc6 32.Bd1 Kh7 33.Bb3 Qe7 34.d5 Be8 35.d6 Qf6 (I have to watch the b2 square but centralising my queen to d4 will be very strong) 36.Nd5 Qf8 37.Nc7 Rb8 38.Ne6 (in my time trouble I missed the quickest win after 38.Nxe8 and d7 and c6 ) 38… Qf6 39.Qd4 Bd7 40.Qxf6 gxf6 41.Bd5 Rc8 42.Nc7 Kg7 43.c6 Rxc7 44.dxc7 Bc8 45.Kc2 Kf8 46.Kb3 Ke7 47.f3 Kd6 48.fxe4 fxe4 49.Bxe4 Kxc7 50.Kxa3 Bg4 51.Kb4 Kb6 52.c7 Kxc7 53.Kxb5 Kd6 54.a4 Ke5 55.Bc6 Bxh5 56.a5 Kd6 57.Bg2 Be2+ 58.Kb6 Ke5 59.Bc6 Kd6 60.Bb5 Bf3 61.a6 Be4 62.a7 Bd5 63.Ba6 1-0