Thursday 20th: 7.30pm
Winter League prize-giving ceremony
Saturday May 27th: 10.30am
The home of chess in Galway
The annual FIDE-rated Galway Rapidplay will be on Saturday 27 May, in the Bridge Centre, St Mary’s Road; games will start at 11 a.m., but entrants must arrive by 10.45 to register. Full information is here. There is a guaranteed prize fund of €550, which will increase if there are more than 50 entries. To enter, email us at galwaychess [at] gmail [dot] com by midday on Friday 26 May (please include your name, and either your ICU and FIDE ID numbers if you have them or your date of birth; also please specify whether you are eligible for the Junior and/or Female Prizes) and pay €15 on registration, or turn up on the day and pay €25. A map showing the location of the Bridge Centre is here.
The April Blitz, played on 20 April, was won by Winter League winner and top seed Denis Ruchko with seven straight wins; the only time this season that anybody has achieved that feat in our blitz tournaments. Second was Pete Morriss on 6 points, whose one loss was, of course, against Denis. The rating prize was won by Billy Delee, whos cored 4 points.
The March Blitz tournament, held on 30 March, was won by Fintan Hegarty with an excellent 6½ points out of 7 (conceding one draw to Zalan Nemeth, and winning all the rest). Fintan (who also won last December) was rated eighth of the eleven players, but his current rating is not an accurate reflection of his prowess at blitz. Second was Denis Ruchko on 5½ (he won all his games except against the Hegartys: losing to Fintan and drawing with brother Conall). The grading prize was won, for the second month in a row, by Kynesha Ryder, who was fourth equal on 4 points.
It’ll be no surprise to members of the Galway chess club that these 3, have followed up their impressive form in the Galway winter league with title wins at this year all Ireland event. Denis is the Irish junior champion & Zalan is the U-16 Irish junior champion. Kynesha was 2nd in the girls u-16 event. Congratulations !
Over 120 students from 12 schools took part in this years Galway national schools Chess finals .. the top 2 schools go forward to the the national finals, to be held in Gonzaga College on Saturday 22nd April. Event report here.
Just under a hundred players took part in the 2017 Galway Congress. The numbers were reduced a little as inexplicably the Leinster Schools Chess Association chose to schedule its finals on a date that clashed, thus depriving many of the most active juniors in Leinster of the opportunity of playing in one of Ireland’s leading tournaments. There was also a comparatively small field in the Masters section, despite it being very strong at the top with two GMs and three IMs. Nevertheless, the hundred who did play seemed to enjoy themselves, and the building work in the hotel was scarcely noticeable: if we had known that the resulting disruption would be so insignificant, we wouldn’t have compensated by reducing the entry fees!
The prize winners were
Masters: First: GM Oleg Korneev (Spain); Second: IM Alex Lopez (Ireland); Third equal: GM Alex Baburin (Ireland) and IM Craig Pritchett (Scotland); Grading: Peter Cafolla; Connaught Champion: FM Philip Short
Major: First: Christopher Young; Second equal: Anastasia Mohylna, James Danaher, Robert Murtagh, Jason Rawlinson, James Naughton; Grading Prize 1: Adam Murphy (also second equal); Grading Prize 2: Eoin Hunter
Minors: First: Hugh O’Connor; Second equal: Aidan O’Sullivan, K S Gopal, Dylan Murphy; Grading Prize 1: Andrejs Kozlovs (also second equal); Grading Prize 2: Jack McIntyre.
A fuller report, plus photos, can be found under the Congress 2017 link above.
On Friday the 3rd of March, the Bridge Club Galway played host to the 4th edition of the Connaught Cup .. here is a link for the full results .. many of the players involved will be in action again next w/e in the Galway Congress !
The largest contingent of Galway players for some years headed down to Bunratty to play in the 2017 Bunratty Chess Festival.
The strongest two performances were by Galway residents Philip Short, who scored 3½ points out of 6 in the Masters section, which secured 15th place (one place ahead of Grand Master and previous world title contender John Speelman!), and Wade Courson, who is new to Galway and did us proud with 4/6 in the Challengers and eleventh place. Others in the Challengers section were club regulars Jason Rawlinson, Zalan Nemeth, and Denis Ruchko, who each scored 3 points, and David McCann and Pete Morriss, who both finished on 2½.
In the Major section, our best performer was Andrew Barber, with 4 points and 15th place. Paul Ward scored 3½, David Baird 3, Kevin Fitzpatrick 2, and Oisin Hodgins, playing in his first tournament, 1½.
In the Minor section, Alan Delahunty came seventh equal with 4½ points, with Kynesha Ryder close behind on 4 and Bill Delee just behind her with 3½.
Apologies to anybody who hasn’t been mentioned: get in touch and you will be added in!
There were rather fewer players in the February blitz, held on Thursday 23 February, than there have been over the past few months; nevertheless, many exciting games were played and there were some unexpected results. The grading prize went to Kynesha Ryder, for the second time in three months, with an excellent 4 out of 6. Second place went to Denis Ruchko, with 4½, while the winner, for the second month in a row, was Pete Morriss with 5½ points out of 6. Pete dropped his half point in a wild game with Denis in which he was a piece down for most of the time, before recovering to reach a won ending which he then threw away. Denis’s chances were rather spoiled by losing in the first round to Kynesha, whilst Kynesha dropped points to last month’s grading prize winner Gopal and also Zalan Nemeth, with whom she shared third place, whilst beating fourth seed Jason Rawlinson as well as Denis.
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.