News – 2011–12

Items on this page are in reverse chronological order (i.e. the most recent items are at the top). For the very latest news, visit the home page.

Inter-County U180 Championship: Yorkshire 9-7 Nottinghamshire (27th May)

Nottinghamshire lost 9-7 in a hard fought match against Yorkshire at the ECF quarter final stage. The team were outgraded by an average of 5 points per board which made Yorkshire slight favourites going into the match. Full results

Arbiting Training Course (27th May)

The MCCU will hold a weekend training course for arbiters at the Syston & District Social Club, High St, Syston on July 14th and 15th 2012. The event will be run by David Welch, Chief Arbiter of the ECF. The training will be structured as follows:

Start End Cost Outline
Saturday 14th 11.45 7.00 5.00 Laws of Chess and the maintenance of digital clocks
Sunday 15th 11.45 4.00 5.00 Pairing Systems and organisation of events
Sunday 15th 4.00 7.00 5.00 Arbiters Exam

If anyone wishes to sit the arbiters exams, they must attend all three modules. Payment on the day by cash for which receipts will be given. Light refreshments will be available at the Social Club for lunches.

The structure is designed so that anyone running a school chess club can attend the first module, and gain alot of benefit from doing so at minimal cost.

Anyone interested and wishing to make a firm booking please email specifying which modules they wish to attend by July 12th.

Best Game Prize (13th May)

Entries are solicited for the "Best Game" prize. Eligible games are those played during the 2011-12 season by members of clubs affiliated to the NCA in the League, in the Congress and any other tournaments organised by the NCA, or for county teams. The rules are not set in concrete, and any grey areas will be determined by EC.

Entries should be submitted to the secretary by 31st May. Games played [eg in the later stages of the county championships] after this deadline will be eligible for next season's prize; likewise, games played [eg for county teams] after the closing date last year are eligible this time. Light analysis may be included, but is not necessary. Entries will be anonymised before submission to the judge.

Ideally, entries should be e-mailed in PGN format [which can be produced by any modern chess program]; but any readable format, whether by e-mail or otherwise, is acceptable.

Doncaster Rapidplay (7th May)

Steve Burke (Ashfield) scored 3/6 in the open, ahead of Paul Cumbers (Grantham) with a score of 2½/6. In the major section Tim Kendall (Gambit) scored 3/6.

Cambridgeshire Rapidplay (7th May)

Steve Burke (Ashfield) won the U175 grading prize in the open section with a score of 2½/5. Also playing in the open was David Coates (Newark) who scored 3/5. In the Challengers section Jonah Willow (West Notts) and Hambel Willow (West Notts) both scored 2½/5.

Nottinghamshire County Championship - amendments to entry form (7th May)

Please download the latest version of the entry form for the Nottinghamshire County Championship as there have been some amendments made. Here is a brief summary of the changes:

All help in setting up is gratefully received. If you have any further enquiries then contact Robert Richmond.

Nottinghamshire County Championship (30th Apr)

An entry form is now available to download for the Nottinghamshire County Championship which is being held on 16-17th June at Bramcote Memorial Hall (West Notts chess club venue).

Nottingham Congress (28th Apr)

Mark Hebden wins the Open again with a score of 4½/5. Stephen Hunter and Michael Harper (both Gambit) win the Major and Intermediate sections. Full results are now up on the web site.

Some photos (taken from Brendan O'Gorman's photo gallery):

Mark Hebden - Open winner
Mark Hebden - Open winner
Jim Burnett - 2nd place in Open and British Champioship nominee
Jim Burnett - 2nd place in Open


Bolton Congress (18th Apr)

Daniel Broughton (West Bridgford) came equal 3rd in the major section with a score of 3½/5.

Southend Congress (18th Apr)

Jim Burnett (Mansfield) came equal 3rd in the open with a score of 5/7 and won 50 prize money. His grading performance for the competition was 217, some 20 points higher than his actual rating of 194. Also playing in the open was David Coates (Newark) and Alex Combie (Newark), both scoring 3½/7.

Inter-County U160 Championship: Nottinghamshire 8-8 Greater Manchester (3rd Apr)

Nottinghamshire drew 8-8 in their last county match to finish top of the table and become under-160 champions. They qualify for the national stages and will play Middlesex in the quarter final on 19th May. Full Results

Old Chess Kit Donation or Sponsorship (3rd Apr)

EPIC Partnership are running a new initiative in inner city schools (specifically St Anns and Sneinton in Nottingham) to introduce chess lessons and activities after school and are looking for some assistance with obtaining the equipment. If any one would consider donating any old or unused kits or would like to sponsor the purchase of some new kits then please contact Paula Gallagher-Osborne. She is the Partnership Business Manager for EPIC Partnership.

Blackpool Congress (3rd Apr)

A number of Notts players took part in this competition. Taylor Pearson (Notts CA) and Graham Neil (Nomads) both scored 3½/5 in the intermediate section. Here are the results for most of the Notts players (the minor section is yet to be published):

35th Taminco Open International Chess Tournament (28th Mar)

This competition is taking place from 14th to 18th July at Ghent in Belgium. The entry fee is €40 and the accommodation on offer is reasonably priced at €30 per night for room and breakfast. There is over €6000 prize money on offer. An entry form is available to download. You can visit the web site for more information.

Doncaster Congress (5th Mar)

There were 17 Notts players who took part in the Doncaster Congress this year. Paul Cumbers (Grantham) came equal 3rd in the Open with a score of 3½/5 and won 20 prize money. Roger Walker (Mansfield) scored 4/5 in the Intermediate and won 33.33 for coming equal 3rd and £50 for a grading prize. In the Minor section Chris Fraser (West Bridgford) scored 3½/5 and won a grading prize of 16.66. Here are the results for all the Notts players (scores out of 5):

St Albans South Herts Congress (5th Mar)

The congress takes place at St Columbas College, King Harry Lane, St Albans on Saturday 31st Mar and Sunday 1st Apr. An entry form is available to download. For more details about the congress contact Terry Douse at You can also visit the web site.

Date finalised for County Championship (13th Feb)

The County Championship will now be held at West Nottingham on 16-17th June.

ECF Membership (13th Feb)

A paper on the ECF Membership scheme is available from the Executive Committee. The scheme is to be implemented from September. Please send any comments to Robert Richmond.

Executive Committee Minutes for 2011/12 (13th Feb)

Minutes from the meetings of 11th November and 20th January are now up on the web site.

New venue for Ashfield chess club (3rd Feb)

Ashfield Chess Club moved venue from 01 January 2012 and now meet at:

The Coronation Social Club, Bannerman Road, Kirkby-in-Ashfield, NG17 8DW (still on a Wednesday)

The club details have been updated on the web site.

ECF 2012 grades now published (3rd Feb)

The ECF Jan 2012 half year gradings are now out. These are effective forthwith. The ECF grading web site is A new feature on the web site is to see detailed game results for the current season and previous seasons for each player.

Inter-County U140 Championship Results Round Up (3rd Feb)

The U140 team started the season by losing 9-7 to Leicestershire. A convincing 11-5 win over Derbyshire got the team back on track. Their most recent match was against Shropshire where they narrowly won 8½-7½. This puts Nottinghamshire in 3rd place in the U140 section with everything to play for.

8 Oct 2011 Leicestershire 9-7 Nottinghamshire Full Results
10 Dec 2011 Derbyshire 5-11 Nottinghamshire Full Results
21 Jan 2012 Nottinghamshire 8½-7½ Shropshire Full Results

Inter-County U100 Championship: Nottinghamshire 7½-4½ Warwickshire (29th Jan)

The U100 team were comfortable winners over Warwickshire and gain the U100 Midlands title. The success was due to the inclusion of 7 juniors who between them scored 5 points. Full results

Inter-County U180 Championship: Warwickshire 10½-5½ Nottinghamshire (29th Jan)

Last season Nottinghamshire were comfortable winners over Warwickshire but this time it was the home team that prevailed and took the Midlands title. As there are only 2 teams in the U180 Championship, both go through to the national stages. Full results

David Levens new position in the ECF (23rd Jan)

David Levens has just been appointed to the position of Manager of Junior Coaching (Home) by the ECF.

Nottingham Rapidplay (23rd Jan)

The winner of the Open section was Alan Smith from Stockport with a score of 5/6. There was a three way tie for first place in the Major between Mark Kenyon (West Nottingham), Andrew Toothill (Ashfield) and Michael Connor (Great Lever). The full results are now up on the web site with a list of prize winners.

York Congress (11th Jan)

The prizes in the York Congress are determined by points scored rather than final position. All 4 Notts players entering the competition were successful at picking up a prize. Michael Harper (Gambit) came equal 3rd in the minor section and won 60 for scoring 4/5. Alex Combie (Newark) and Jim Burnett (Mansfield) both scored 3½/5 in the open section and get their entry fee refunded. In the major section Richard Webster (West Bridgford) also scored 3½/5 and won the same prize.

DforChess web site and books (1st Jan)

A local chess player, Trevor Palmer from Grantham Chess Club, has created a new chess web site to help promote 2 books that he has published. Here is a short description from the author:

"I have just completed a new chess website,, the purpose of which is to publish 2 books I have written, Chess for Ordinary Mortals and The Stonewall Attack. As you will see if you visit the site, the first book, in addition I would hope to being a helpful guide to 'below average improvers', contains 67 illustrative games from my past and present. Although the great majority are from my earlier years in Leicestershire chess circles, there are more recent ones since I joined Grantham CC from Notts League matches. I hope this project will be of interest to Association members. Any feedback at all would be welcome."

You can send your feedback to

London Chess Classic (1st Jan)

David Flynn (Nomads) scored 4½/9 in the FIDE Open event and finished around mid table.

London Junior Chess Championships (1st Jan)

Mark Kenyon (West Notts) played very well in the U12 Major Championship and came equal 3rd out of 79 competitors. The results for all the Notts juniors taking part are as follows:

For the full results you can visit the ljcc web site.

Bolton Rapidplay (18th Dec)

The Bolton Rapidplay took place on Sunday 13th November. Janos Wagenbach (Mansfield) came 3rd place in the Knights section with a score of 5/6 and won 30 prize money. In the same section David Dunne (West Nottingham) scored 2½/6 and in the Open Daniel Broughton (West Bridgford) scored 1½/6.

Birmingham Rapidplay (18th Dec)

The Birmingham Rapidplay took place on Sunday 23rd October. In the major section Richard Webster (West Bridgford) came first place with a score of 5/6 and won 200 prize money. Peter Mercs wasn't far behind with a score of 4½/6 in the same section, coming equal second and winning 30 prize money.

British Rapidplay - Junior report (4th Dec)

Report from David Levens

At the recent British Rapidplay event, held in Leeds, 4 of our juniors, Hari Solomonides, Taylor Pearson, Karam Sangha, and Sahrin Ahluwalia, all from Nottingham Junior High School, though the first three mentioned are also members of WNCC, all achieved their second, necessary half norms and have qualified already to compete in the England U11 team trials next April. In addition to that we have several more who have also achieved part qualification and may yet join them. Listen to Radio Nottingham around 2.20pm next Friday.

Further successes were achieved by 7 year old Adam Bennett from Bramcote Hills Junior School, who, in consecutive weeks, won the Under 8 section of Northampton Junior Congress, by scoring 6/6, and followed that up by winning the Under section of the Warwickshire Junior Championships with another 6/6. Adam is also a member of West Nottingham CC.

Anyone interested in coaching juniors is welcome to attend our county coaching sessions at Dovecote School, Clifton on Saturday, 3rd December and/or Saturday, 10th December between 9.00am and 12.00 noon.

British Rapidplay (4th Dec)

The best result from a Notts player at this year's British Rapidplay came from Jim Burnett (Mansfield) in the Open section where he had a very impressive score of 7/11. Also playing in the Open was Alex Combie (Newark) scoring 5/11. In the minor there were 2 Notts players - Chris Bonnello (Radcliffe & Bingham) scored 6/11 and Allan Brown (Gambit) scored 4½/11.

Congress, Rapidplay & County Championship (19th Nov)

The organisers have had problems finding available dates at the High School. The Association will now pay for the room hire, and consequently it will not be possible to give free entry to juniors. Also the County Championship will run sometime after the congress (date to be confirmed). The dates for the competitions are as follows:

Rapidplay - Sunday Jan 15th
Congress - April 21/22
County Championship - To Be Confirmed

Entry forms will be available in the near future.

English Under 11s Closed Championship held on 15-16th Oct - Results (15th Nov)

Report from David Levens

This year's event, held in Nottingham High School, attracted a record entry of 67 children including eighteen boys and one girl from Notts. This was a good standard of entry with two youngsters having grades of 133! Nonetheless seven of our boys secured the magical half-norm required towards qualification for a place in the England Under 11 trials next April. These seven were as follows: Taylor Pearson - 3.5; Hari Solomonides - 3; Karam Sangha - 3(all West Nottm.); Ben Rendell - 3 (West Bridgford); Donald Flynn - 3 (High School); James Webster - 3 (HS); Sahrin Ahluwalia - 3 (HS).

Other scores are as follows:
Sam Smith McGloin - 2.5 (West Nottm); Ishaan Bedi - 2 (West Nottm); Will Atiomo - 2 (HS); John Croasdale - 2 (West Bridgford); Adam Bennett - 2 (West Nottm); Matthew Shipway - 2 (West Nottm); Helena Constantinou - 2 (Girls HS); Harry Mahal and Adiyta Munshi - 1 (both HS); Blake Southwell - 1 (Keyworth). Jonah Willow and Sam Teanby both withdrew through illness.

There is a good crop of talent here, especially when you realise that many of the above who missed getting 3 points are still only year 5s; Adam Bennett who had really tough opposition, is a year 3(!)

Scarborough Congress Game (14th Nov)

The following game played at this year's Scarborough Congress is a good example of how sustained pressure on your opponent can outweigh any material deficit. White is 2 pawns up but completely tied up in the position. When it looks as though he has finally broken free his position collapses quickly.

Scarborough Congress (28th Oct)

Over 15 Notts players made the journey up to Scarborough for this popular congress and between them they won 1070 prize money! David Dunne (West Notts) came first place in the minor with a perfect score of 5/5 and won 500. Chris Bonnello (Radcliffe & Bingham) came equal first in the foundation with a score of 4½/5 and won 375. Alex Combie (Newark) and Mike Barnes (Gambit) both came equal 3rd in the Open with a score of 4/5 and won 85 each. Alex beat IM Andrew Ledger in round 3 with a grading difference of nearly 50 points. A summary of all the Notts players that took part in the competition are as follows:

If you played any interesting games in this congress then please send them into the webmaster who will gladly put them up on the web site.

Hull Congress (28th Oct)

The best scoring Notts player was Stanley Cranmer (Ashfield) with 3½/5 in the Major section. Here are the results for all the Notts players that took part in the competition:

ECF Membership (23rd Oct)

Robert Richmond

The ECF Council approved a membership scheme to replace Game Fee last Saturday (Oct 15th). The main features are:

  1. BRONZE membership at 12 (Juniors 8) for league only players
  2. SILVER membership at 18 (Juniors 12) to play in congresses
  3. GOLD membership at 27 (Juniors 22) to play in FIDE rated events
  4. Residual Game Fee to be payable for graded games for non-members at 1 if the league exceeds 85% membership (excluding ungraded players playing 3 or fewer games) and 2 if it does not.

These changes clearly have substantial implications for the way the association is funded. Watch this space...

Leicester Congress (9th Oct)

Daniel Broughton (Nottinghamshire) won the Major section with a score of 4½/5 and received 200 prize money. There were a number of good performances from Notts players in the Open including Mike Barnes (Gambit), Rob Hearne (West Bridgford) and Richard Webster (West Bridgford) who all finished on 3/5. A summary of all the Notts players that took part in the competition are as follows:

Minutes of LMC meetings for 2011 (26th Sep)

The minutes for the LMC meetings held on 15th April and 8th July are now up on the web site. An important topic discussed at the meetings was the eligibility of players. Some of the rules were changed this season to try and address these issues e.g rule C4.

Paignton Congress (18th Sep)

Steve Burke

Five Notts players went down for the 61st annual Paignton week. Richard Webster was most successful, sharing first place in the Challengers event with 5.5/7, beating Bob Taylor along the way. He finished on 4/7, missing out on the grading prize with a last round loss. Stan Cranmer also scored 4/7, in the Intermediate, while Richard Truman had a tough week in the Premier, finishing with 1.5/7. I was also in the Premier and gained some FIDE points with 50% against higher rated opposition.

CWANG Challenge 2011 (29th Aug)

The annual CWANG challenge took place on 14th July at the Horse 'n' Groom. Ashfield dominated the tournament from start to finish and won with a score of 31½/40. This was 11½ points more than Gambit who finished 2nd place on 20 points. Full report

Sunningdale International (25th Aug)

Steve Burke (Ashfield) played in the Challengers E group of this 9 round all play all event and came 1st with a score of 5½/8 (one player dropped out). He won free entry to one of the Masters groups in a future event. For further results and games visit the e2e4 web site.

League Fixtures 2011-12 (25th Aug)

The league fixtures for the coming season are now available. They are in an excel spreadsheet format and can be downloaded. Please note that these dates could change. The league results section of the web site will be updated in the near future.

British Championships (20th Aug)

In the major open Alex Combie (Newark) came equal 4th with a score of 7½/11 and won 50 prize money. Gordon Stables (West Notts) also finished equal 4th but was awarded a rating prize of 100. He had a rating performance of 2116, 150 points higher than his actual rating of 1966. A full list of Notts players who took part in the British Championships are as follows:

Some photos (taken from the BritishChess11 web site):

Gordon Stables playing in the Major Open at the British Championships 2011
Gordon Stables (West Notts) in the Major Open

Robert Taylor playing in the U160 section at the British Championships 2011
Robert Taylor (Ashfield) in the U160

Peter Mercs playing in the 5 day morning open at the British Championships 2011
Peter Mercs (Gambit) in the 5 Day morning open

County Championships - U180 Final stages (17th Jul)

The U180 team beat Devon 8½-7½ to claim the U180 title. This made amends to last year's defeat in the final stage against Warwickshire. Full results. Some games from the final are available to play through.

League Rule Changes (10th Jul)

There have been some minor changes to the league rules. Please familiarise yourself with these changes in preparation for the new season which starts in September. Here is a brief summary of the changes (highlighted in bold):

Section A - Administration

Rule 2b - A member of the LMC, including the League Secretary & Records Secretary, may not vote on any issue directly concerning his or her club, unless personally involved, when he or she may give evidence
Rule 5b - No later than end of February, the Association Secretary shall call the meeting to be held normally in mid May

Section B - The League

Rule 1 - The season is from 1st September to 15th May and clubs must be affiliated to the NCA before entry into the League

Section C - Players

Rule 4 - No player may play for a club lower team if he (or she) has, previously in the same season, played twice for higher teams other than on the bottom two boards played or won by default.
Rule 5 - All appearances above the bottom two boards played or won by default will count for eligibility even if that team fails to complete its fixtures

Schedule D - Penalties

Rule 7 - The penalty for defaulting a match is the loss of two match points and a fine of 20, in addition to any other penalty imposed.

Best Game Prize (10th Jul)

The winner of this year's Best Game prize is David Levens, for his game versus Nick Payne. Congratulations to him, and thanks to Jon Tait, who chose it from the six entries this year. Message from Andy Walker.

July 2011 FIDE Rating List (2nd Jul)

The new FIDE ratings were published yesterday. Below are a list of the top 5 most improved Notts players:

Chris Dorrington (Grantham) +44.25
Alex Posazhennikov (University) +26.1
Daniel Wells (Newark) +24.75
Pablo Padilla (Ashfield) +13.8
Richard Webster (Ashfield) +5.55

There are about 33 Notts players with FIDE ratings and half of these players actively play in FIDE rated events. A full list is available to view.

Gatwick Congress (25th Jun)

The leading Notts player in the Open was David Coates (Grantham) who scored 2½/5. There were 2 other Notts players, also competing in the Open and they were Paul Cumbers (Grantham) with a score of 2/5 and Ivan David (Grantham) with a score of 1½/5.

Sunningdale Congress (25th Jun)

There were 2 Notts players taking part in the Open section. David Coates (Grantham) scored 4/7 and Ivan David (Grantham) scored 2/7.

Inter-County U180 Championship: Lancashire 5-7 Nottinghamshire (25th Jun)

Nottinghamshire beat Lancashire 7-5 in the ECF semi final and progress to the final on 2nd July where they play Devon. This was an excellent result considering the team were outgraded by an average of 5 points per board. Full results

County Championships - ECF Quarter Finals Stage - Results (6th Jun)

There were 4 Notts county teams competing at the ECF quarter final stages. The U180 team had a convincing win over Kent where they won 9½-2½ and progress to the semi final where they play Lancashire. The U160 team beat Suffolk 10-6 and progress to the semi final where they play Kent. Unfortunately the U140 and U100 teams both lost. Results are as follows:

U180 Quarter Final Nottinghamshire 9½ - 2½ Kent
U160 Quarter Final Suffolk 6 - 10 Nottinghamshire
U140 Quarter Final Kent 11½ - 4½ Nottinghamshire
U100 Quarter Final Lancashire 7½ - 4½ Nottinghamshire

Obituary for Paul Todd (6th Jun)

An obituary has been written in memory of Paul Todd who died earlier this year.