The 2017 Galway Chess Congress will be held in the Menlo Park Hotel on the weekend of 10th to 12th March. There are three sections, which cater for everybody from Grand Masters to beginners. Full information, including how to enter, is available at the Galway Congress 2017 tab, above.
The January blitz, held on Thursday 26th, was won by Pete Morriss, on 6/7 (losing only to December’s winner, Fintan Hegarty). Second was the reigning Winter League champion, Carlos Silva, on 5½ – losing to Pete, and drawing with Denis Ruchko after a long rook and pawn ending which Carlos managed to hold a pawn down; Carlos also beat Fintan in the last round, thereby ensuring that Fintan didn’t retain his title. The Grading Prize went to the ungraded K.S. Gopal, who scored an excellent 4½.
w/e 6th – 8th Jan .. The Mulcahy Memorial Competition in Cork .. The tournament report can be found on icu.ie
Congratulations to Zalan Nemeth (a recent winner in Kilkenny) who scored with 4/6 against avg. rating of 1850. And to Denis Ruchko who was on 4/5 going into the last round, but came up against a very strong IM (Alex Lopez) to finish on 4/6 .. both gaining more valuable rating points.
Our Christmas blitz tournament saw the largest attendance at the club for several years, including some past members who hadn’t been seen for far too long: it’s amazing what the offer of mince pies can do! The surprise winner was Fintan Hegarty who, although rated in the lower half, scored an outstanding 6/7. He started by beating top seed Brendan Buckley; lost in round 2 to club founder Ronan Duke, who showed he is not out of practice despite not playing for several years; and then scorched through the field with five straight wins. Second equal, with 5/7, were Denis Ruchko, Brendan Buckley, Jason Rawlinson, and Fintan’s younger brother Conall Hegarty. The grading prize, for the best performance by a player in the lower half (who does not also win the tournament!) was won by young Kynesha Ryder on 4/7, doubtless the first of many prizes for her.
There was another good turnout at the November blitz on the 17th. The winner was Jason Rawlinson, who led all the way, finishing on 6½/7, conceding his one draw to Denis Ruchko. Second was Conall Hegarty on 6; his game against Jason was long and exciting, in which both players had to make full use of the five-second increment, until eventually Jason’s queen proved to have too many tricks for Conall’s rook and minor piece. The prize for the best ungraded player went to Oisin Hodges with 4 points; he tied for this honour with Paraic O’Reilly and Jonathan Klein, but had a much better tie-break, as he had played most of the strongest players, and also beat the top seed.
Half a dozen club members went to Limerick to play in the Limerick Congress over the bank holiday weekend. We came away with two prize-winners in the under-1400 section: David Piercy came third equal with 4 points out of 6 (a steady two wins and four draws) whilst Zalan Nemeth also came third equal (also undefeated) and in addition won the under-1050 grading prize because of his better tie-break. David and Zalan played each other in round 5, and the game was, of course, drawn.
In the Open section, Pete Morriss and David Baird both scored 3½ points, Denis Ruchko 3, and Kynesha Ryder 2½. Denis and Kynesha’s performances were both particularly outstanding: Denis had two fine wins against players rated 1900 or more, and finished with a rating performance over 200 points above his initial rating; whilst Kynesha, despite being the lowest-rated player in the field, more than held her own in her games, including gaining a draw with an opponent rated more than 1000 points higher than her. Denis and Kynesha are two juniors who are improving rapidly; Denis already has an impressive string of achievements to his name, and there is little doubt that Kynesha will soon be following suit.
Yury Rochev played against eleven club members in a clock simultaneous last Thursday, and came out victorious after nearly three hours by 10½ to ½: the one blot on his record was a fine draw by Denis Ruchko, who was the last left standing and succeeded in holding a difficult rook ending one-on-one. Others who put up some stiff resistance before succumbing were Kynesha Ryder and Andrew Barber. But Yury showed his class – as did Denis,
The October blitz tournament, held on 6 October, again saw a good turnout consisting of a healthy mix of regulars, newcomers, and old friends returning. One of this last group. David McCann showed that he has not been resting idle whilst travelling in some exotic places (including Dublin, apparently), by putting in a strong performance to score 6 points out of 7 and share first place. Equal first with him was regular, and tournament organizer, Pete Morriss. (David won their individual match-up, but subsequently lost to third-placed Denis Ruchko, in a very exciting game.) The grading prize was won by Marcus Creavin, who came a commendable fourth equal on 4 points.
The next blitz tournament will be some time in November; watch this website for an announcement of the exact date.
On October 27th, the Galway Chess Club will host a simultaneous exhibition with chess master Yury Rochev, who will take on a number of challengers at once.
Places are limited, so if you are interested, please email galwaychess[at]gmail[dot]
com to register as soon as possible. Participation in the event will be free for paid-up members of the Galway Chess Club, with a €5 fee for non-members. Games will start at 7:30pm sharp and anyone not present at the start time will forfeit their spot.
Our October blitz tournament will take placed at the Bridge Centre (upstairs), St Mary’s Road on Thursday 6 October; registration will be at 7.30, and the tournament will start at 8 prompt. There will be seven rounds; the time limit will be each player has five minutes for each game, plus an increment of five seconds per move. We will provide sets and clocks, though if you have a clock that supports increments please bring it along in case more players come along than we can cater for. New players are particularly welcome.