Author Topic: Proposed team competition structure for 2021/22 season  (Read 192 times)

hughgb

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Proposed rule changes 2021/22


My intention is that the online operation should continue in its present form when OTB chess returns. That means organising the following events:
Cornwall Online League
Cornwall Online Congress
Cornwall Knock-out tournament
Western Counties Championship
International online matches (meaning against teams outside the county boundaries!)
Thematic tournaments
Zoom analysis sessions
Involvement of Cornish teams/players in 4NCL competitions.

I'm confident that there will be sufficient support from the players to make this a viable project.

I think there will not be enough players wishing to play regularly to justify all these. The list sounds like the current online offering, though if there is ONE Cornwall online league (I favour Swiss, best solution to our widely disparate teams and works because no venues need to be booked), one set of cups, one online Congress, and a limited number of other matches then there'd be space for a return to OTB. As far as OTB goes, I think that should be scaled back from the pre-pandemic total, to leave space for online chess. If OTB chess returns, then so will the rest of normal life and other activities will occupy a lot of my time; and I'm guessing that many other people will be similarly itching to do a greater variety of things.
Proposed rule changes 2021/22


My intention is that the online operation should continue in its present form when OTB chess returns. That means organising the following events:
Cornwall Online League
Cornwall Online Congress
Cornwall Knock-out tournament
Western Counties Championship
International online matches (meaning against teams outside the county boundaries!)
Thematic tournaments
Zoom analysis sessions
Involvement of Cornish teams/players in 4NCL competitions.

I'm confident that there will be sufficient support from the players to make this a viable project.

I think there will not be enough players wishing to play regularly to justify all these. The list sounds like the current online offering, though if there is ONE Cornwall online league (I favour Swiss, best solution to our widely disparate teams and works because no venues need to be booked), one set of cups, one online Congress, and a limited number of other matches then there'd be space for a return to OTB. As far as OTB goes, I think that should be scaled back from the pre-pandemic total, to leave space for online chess. If OTB chess returns, then so will the rest of normal life and other activities will occupy a lot of my time; and I'm guessing that many other people will be similarly itching to do a greater variety of things.

Ian George

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A few initial thoughts.
In the knock-out competitions, I think each club (or group of clubs) should only be allowed one entry. This would avoid a repetition of Carrick's ploy last season of entering two teams and deciding which one to default after the draw.
If there are more than four teams in a knock-out competition, there should be an elimination to reduce the number to four. Otherwise the final could be the third match played by one or both teams on a single day.
I would recommend that the mileage cut-off be set to 40 miles. Otherwise Bude might never get a home match.
It wasn't a ploy!! We lost players between signing up 2 teams and the match dates. And something happened to one of the opposing teams too. However, given our loss of players (Adam, Toby, Bea, Boris) I reckon we'd enter just one team anyway. But I don't agree that it should be a rule. Let clubs expand, more players, more chess.

Ian George

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My intention is that the online operation should continue in its present form when OTB chess returns. That means organising the following events:
Cornwall Online League
Cornwall Online Congress
Cornwall Knock-out tournament
Western Counties Championship
International online matches (meaning against teams outside the county boundaries!)
Thematic tournaments
Zoom analysis sessions
Involvement of Cornish teams/players in 4NCL competitions.


1) I think there will not be enough players wishing to play regularly to justify all these.
2) The list sounds like the current online offering ...
3) ... though if there is ONE Cornwall online league (I favour Swiss, best solution to our widely disparate teams and works because no venues need to be booked), one set of cups, one online Congress, and a limited number of other matches then there'd be space for a return to OTB.
4) As far as OTB goes, I think that should be scaled back from the pre-pandemic total, to leave space for online chess.
5) If OTB chess returns, then so will the rest of normal life and other activities will occupy a lot of my time; and I'm guessing that many other people will be similarly itching to do a greater variety of things.

1) I disagree. Online and OTB are completely separate; the online operation is is being run outside the CCCA. Some people won't play online (we have at least 4 at Camborne.) Others will be risk averse and will stay away from OTB play. The rest want to play both. We must cater fully for all 3 groups.
2) That's because it is the current online offering.
3a) I support having the next online league as a Swiss, 5 or 6 rounds depending on the number of teams entered. I'll set it up and announce it on that basis.
3a) The programme you have outlined is what we do now. In the current online set up we have one league and one "congress" on alternate Sundays with 4NCL on alternate Tuesdays. Other things are held during the break in these events, again mostly once per week. In my view there will be plenty enough people wanting to take part for it to be sustainable. Numbers fall off a cliff, then we can review it.
4) For the reasons advanced in 1) above, I don't agree and think it would be wrong to curtail OTB competitions. What we need to do is to make them as "user friendly" as possible.
5) So they will and so will I but the fact that there may be people who don't want to play shouldn't stop us from providing a service to those who do, even if numbers are down, which remains to be seen.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2021, 01:59:33 pm by Ian George »

Gary T.

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Sorry Ian but I'm with David here. We've got so many chess events going on both locally and with 4NCL and the various Lichess events that I am with him in thinking that we really don't need another event! I would appreciate it if you would make the intermittent Cornish gambit events RATED rather than unrated and I would also be pleased if you would increase the default font size on this forum to something kinder to ageing eyes. As things stand you need to be wearing glasses to read the stuff on this site.

With regard to the Roger Grime and Under 135 Cups, I think that these should be played on different days over a weekend (or two if that is what is needed) over the board.

Gary T.

Ian George

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Sorry Ian but I'm with David here.
1) We've got so many chess events going on both locally and with 4NCL and the various Lichess events that I am with him in thinking that we really don't need another event!
2) I would appreciate it if you would make the intermittent Cornish gambit events RATED rather than unrated
3)  and I would also be pleased if you would increase the default font size on this forum to something kinder to ageing eyes. As things stand you need to be wearing glasses to read the stuff on this site.
4) With regard to the Roger Grime and Under 135 Cups, I think that these should be played on different days over a weekend (or two if that is what is needed) over the board.
Gary T.

1) Let the people decide. If they don't want it, they'll vote against it.
2) The thematic events are designed to allow people to practise unfamiliar openings without the inhibition of thinking about their ratings. To the extent that lichess ratings matter at all (which, in my view they don't), it wouldn't be fair for someones rating to be affected because they had to play a series of openings they knew nothing about. Discouraging people from entering would not be beneficial.
3) I'll see what I can do.
4) That's already being proposed.


« Last Edit: May 24, 2021, 08:17:32 am by Ian George »

Ian George

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I agree with David about the difficulty of the "relationship between online and OTB chess". For me, there is the added question of how much time to give to junior chess?
There's no way I can devote even half of the time I've given to chess over the past year.
1) With other activities, 'normal life', restarting for me, and doubtless others, we have to be careful that we put on the amount of OTB chess people will turn up for.
I think the solution for next season will be something like:
OTB, Covid permitting
Fewer team matches than before
Fewer booked club evenings
A couple of one-day events for individuals
One (two?) weekenders
2) Online:
One Cornwall team event
One main Cornwall individual event
And the 4NCL for those who want it.
There's so much available online I think we do not need to arrange much locally, but that might be a minority view.

While Robin's suggestions would certainly make my job as League Secretary a lot easier, I cannot support them. OTB chess has a social side which does not exist online. I would prefer something closer to the situation before lockdown, but with fewer late nights by regionalism and weekend play at neutral venues.
3) Perhaps one evening each week could be reserved for an online county competition.

1) Exactly, but that does not necessarily mean a reduction in activity. The proposed programme seems right to me. If numbers fall off a cliff we can review the situation.
2) As I posted elsewhere, "The programme you have outlined is what we do now. In the current online set up we have one league and one "congress" on alternate Sundays with 4NCL on alternate Tuesdays. Other things are held during the break in these events, again mostly once per week. In my view there will be plenty enough people wanting to take part for it to be sustainable. If numbers fall drastically then we can review it.
3) That's exactly what happens now and how I intend to continue.
« Last Edit: May 24, 2021, 06:14:12 am by Ian George »

Robin_Kneebone

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Of course these issues will be put to votes, and if the votes produce good majorities then the new pattern will be set up for at least the first season. Even so, it's going to be difficult to know how many people will enter all the events when the total offering, OTB plus online, may be much greater than in the current pandemic period and much greater than pre-pandemic. The main events, online and OTB, ought ideally to have similar entry numbers as (OTB) they used to have, and online as they get now.
There are costs involved. With online that's overwhelmingly Ian George's time: others could set up events but we rely on the website to describe the diary. Will numbers playing OTB sustain hire charges? Or are we going to lean heavily on the Trust funds at least for the 21-22 season? And, as always, we need a larger number of organisers to share the OTB load.

Gary T.

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Sorry Ian but I'm with David here.

1) We've got so many chess events going on both locally and with 4NCL and the various Lichess events that I am with him in thinking that we really don't need another event!

2) I would appreciate it if you would make the intermittent Cornish gambit events RATED rather than unrated

3)  and I would also be pleased if you would increase the default font size on this forum to something kinder to ageing eyes. As things stand you need to be wearing glasses to read the stuff on this site.

4) With regard to the Roger Grime and Under 135 Cups, I think that these should be played on different days over a weekend (or two if that is what is needed) over the board.

Gary T.


1) Let the people decide. It's their votes that count.

2) The thematic events are designed to allow people to practise unfamiliar openings without the inhibition of thinking about their ratings. To the extent that lichess ratings matter at all (which, in my view they don't), it wouldn't be fair for someones rating to be affected because they had to play a series of openings they knew nothing about. Discouraging people from entering would not be beneficial.

3) I'll see what I can do.

4) That's already being proposed.[/size]

Thanks for these very specific replies Ian and especially for increasing the font size! With regard to 2) above, in no wise am I discouraging people from entering but your remark about ratings not mattering seems to me disingenuous! Ratings give us the best objective data we have at any moment in time as to the relative strengths of various players and allow organisers to predict which players will probably do well in an event and which
will probably finish lower down in the final placings. So the gradings are important. Many players - not all admittedly - are very ratings conscious and I would opine that many of us are more motivated by ratings considerations than we would like to admit! If an event doesn't alter ratings depending upon results then honestly what is the incentive to play? That's like a chess event offering no prize-money! If ratings are not affected then basically you're just patzering around! People take their chess more seriously when ratings points are at stake and even though the point is arguable I feel that most of us play better when ratings can be affected. I also don't see that it is intrinsically unfair for people to play in an event that might affect their rating! We're all of us doing this every time we play! Let those who aren't willing to do this play something else instead, say, tiddlywinks, which might well suit them better. Chess is a MAN'S game and these people need to man up! Anyway, hold events by all means that allow those who wish to play non-graded events to do so - I suppose that it encourages weaker players and lets them get their teeth into something that ultimately benefits them - but also please be fair to those of us who much prefer playing proper graded chess.

Gary T.

Ian George

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1)If an event doesn't alter ratings depending upon results then honestly what is the incentive to play?
2) Chess is a MAN'S game and these people need to man up!
3) ...please be fair to those of us who much prefer playing proper graded chess.
Gary T.

1) I haven't changed my mind and the thematic Swisses will remain unrated. The incentive is practice with no inhibiting factors.
2) No, it isn't and they don't. Women and girls are also allowed to play. Moreover, everyone is entitled to enjoy chess in their own way.
3) That doesn't mean that every event we run has to be rated. The thematics are the only unrated event we have. Everything else counts for lichess and ECF online ratings.
« Last Edit: May 24, 2021, 08:15:09 am by Ian George »

Ian George

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I've been meaning to reply to your earlier e-mails as to resumption of OTB chess for a while, but have awaited replies from Newquay members regarding your proposals. I've had a few responses, not as many as i'd hoped, maybe some are waiting for the forum.
1)Those that have replied indicate a reluctance to weekend chess and also an East / West split. For me East / West is a no goer, I want Newquay to be playing everyone. As for weekend chess it would not suit me either.
2) Getting OTB chess up and running again is a formidable task no doubt. I do wonder if many players are now too comfortable playing online. For me ,continuing club nights is essential,
3)... but county shield etc could all be played online.


1) the advantage of East/West + weekend matches is that it frees up 6-8 evenings for club meetings. The drawback of countywide leagues, as we have at present, is the late night driving and return home at or after midnight.
2) You're so right; club nights are essential. The importance of the social side of chess must never be overlooked. This is lacking in online chess. The plan is for the online operation to continue along current lines. There is sufficient demand for it.
3) I'm opposed to this. I think that OTB and online chess should be kept strictly separate. We must also look after the people who won't play online. We have at least 4 at Camborne and I don't expect we're alone in that.
« Last Edit: May 24, 2021, 08:14:27 am by Ian George »

Ian George

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These are my thoughts on the proposed changes and not contected with Liskeard chess club.

1) I do not like the East/West split. A league of 4 does not work. We end up playing against the same players.
2a) It takes 1 hour to travel from Liskeard to Penzance and 1 hour 10 minutes to travel to Bude,
2b) ... so if we can travel to Bude so can the rest of the Cornish clubs.
3a) We could try starting matches at 7pm
3b) and reducing the time control to 30 moves in 1hour and 15 minutes thereafter.

I will not be able to play most Saturday's due to Plymouth Argyle. Surely we have enough weekday slots to play all the League and Cup matches. Our 2nd team went 6 weeks without a game during the last completed season. I did not play enough matches to warrant paying ECF fee.  Our season is due to start on Monday 13th September.

1) That's true, although it works for the 500 League. On the other hand regionalised leagues reduce the amount of night driving and increase the probability of getting home before midnight. That's my priority.
2a) According to https://distancecalculator.globefeed.com/UK_Distance_Calculator.asp it's nearer 1 hour 20 minutes. One of the Camborne players lives in St Just. The drive from St Just to Liskeard is 1 hour 35 minutes. For anyLiskeard players from Saltash, the driving time to Camborne is 1 hour 20 minutes. Little chance of getting home before midnight.
2b) In my view the right question to ask is not "It's OK for us, so why shouldn't the others have to as well?" but rather "Why should any one be expected to arrive home after midnight when we could make viable arrangements to make it unnecessary?"
3a)There is already a proposal to star at 7.15. 7 o'clock would be a struggle for Bude and Carrick who organise junior sessions before the main meeting.
3b) The proposal is to play all our competitions using incremental timing. The County Association, with funding from the Cornwall Chess Trust, proposes to buy 6 DGT-3000 clocks for the clubs that do not have them. I think that shortening the games by 30 minutes would be a retrograde step, hence the proposal of all moves in 75 minutes plus 15 second increments from move 1.


« Last Edit: May 24, 2021, 08:10:57 am by Ian George »

Ian George

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[size12]
I’ve had a quick look at the document after a busy day at work.

My opening thoughts are:

When to play

Although Ian George does not realise it possibly, the best way to kill off team chess is to make players play in whole teams at weekends.

I won’t be able to play at weekends. Others will also prefer not to play at weekends.

The notable exception, for me, is that there could be a team jamboree outside of the spring and summer months of tourism: April to October, and that this could also be a possibility for a Cornwall AGM before playing, for those wanting to arrive early and participate.

If there are no tournaments it is good for everyone together once a year at least.

I would like games to start earlier, I don’t understand why they can’t start at 7 pm like they did throughout the 1980s through to the two thousands. I would prefer to move to Monday games only once again, as well.

East and West

This proposal is very favourable if you are playing for Camborne, because the south-west of Cornwall is more densely populated than
 in the north-east.

The reality of this proposal is that everyone in ‘West’ has less distance to travel, everyone in ‘east’ is shafted.

The cute response to this is to not only point out that it is hard to split east v west. It must be made explicit now that Newquay is, very definitely, to the west of both Truro and Falmouth, so if players from there, with easy access to the A30 as well, ar’ West’ then Newquay is also clearly ‘west.’

Not sure on all of the rule changes, although most of them seem sensible on first glance.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2021, 07:57:42 am by Ian George »

Ian George

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[size=12]
I am struggling to find the positives in this from my own point of view. Well first off would love to get back to club nights at the Lanherne but guess that all depends upon the pub and how that works. Optimistically I was hoping that by September that might be possible but let's face it Covid is no respecter of the way it used to be - hard to believe how life has changed.

As far as I see it I can only go on others' experiences regarding the various competitions. I would consider playing at weekends but the prospect does not fill with me with everlasting joy - maybe I could be persuaded but as I think I said before I feel worried that weekend play will only suit people who can fully commit to playing chess at weekends and effectively discriminate vs those who cannot but would otherwise like to. That reduces the pool of players likely to be able to compete for the club. I would not want to feel obliged to play every weekend as giving up a day for this is not something I feel I can commit to for the foreseeable. Of course it might not be every weekend, nor might I be picked but hopefully you can get my drift. Playing online: again I suppose I could consider it but I need to know how others manage this - my own domestic circumstances lead me to want to get away from the home environment to play. At home I have no guaranteed uninterrupted space. I am also a little paranoid concerning how you can play online without the possibility of being up vs a computer - see I have never engaged in that kind of play.

Really keen to be involved but a bit disheartened at the challenges we appear to be faced with. Hopefully there is a more optimistic view out there that I am missing.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2021, 07:56:59 am by Ian George »

Robin_Kneebone

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There's a lot to consider. Some of the issues are new, but the important ones are not.
Hardy perennials include: how to get females into the game; how to improve the current disgraceful, embarrassing, number of active juniors. And crucially how to recruit more players, of any age or gender. Most of the posts don't touch these.
FYI I'm steadily contacting schools and trying to find tutors to go in to schools. There are 300+ schools in the county, so, like Cap'n Oates, I may be some time.
I have proposed some sessions for totally new players - early club starts, informal chess evenings, coaching. Members of the Truro/Falmouth club have indicated a willingness to help with this.

I see the above as vastly more important than the points I'm going to mention below. I can scarcely be bothered with the rest of this, but here goes.
Some venues simply need to be larger. If there is space for 12 people, no newcomer will feel welcome.
Silent match sessions will almost never attract newbies.
We need more organisers. Even Ian G can't run any more stuff, surely; I'm focusing on juniors and the Truro/Fal club.
Ages ago, Devon organised their competitions into a mixture of weekend and evening matches: weekdays are used for local leagues, Saturdays (or Sundays) for whole-county events. Some of us are reluctant to do long evening drives (I could go on about my migraines but many of you already know).
As far as I know, nobody is suggesting a wholesale change to weekend play, and the number of weekend days IMHO would be small. Since OTB county matches may not resume (we are about the last team standing) we have a few days available annually without altering our lives much.

In all, I'm concerned that we may attempt too many competitions, online and OTB. Rationalising it will be hard. But we have financial resources like never before!

Again, how can we get more people into the game? There are some signs that online matches, and the Netflix Queens Gambit, are stimulating interest, both locally (at Camborne and Truro/Fal). I hope the same is happening elsewhere.
More players ...more players ...more players ....(cont p94)