Nottinghamshire County Championship 2005
The 2005 Nottinghamshire County Championship was held (belatedly) at The Summit Centre, Kirkby in Ashfield, on 1–2 April 2006. Neil Graham reports.
The County Championship was split into two sections and attracted 25 entrants. In the past the Championships have been held at the Ashfield District Council Offices, but a policy decision to stop the use of these premises meant that a new venue had to be found. The Summit Centre is a purpose-built complex in a quiet location with ample free parking. The café and bar were open for the duration of the event and everyone that attended found the venue excellent. We were originally due to play in the Sports Hall, but the relatively small attendance meant that all the games were played in the Committee Room.
From a planning viewpoint we’ve lost a year somewhere, although the engraving on the Silver Rook tends to disguise this. It’s clear that a definite weekend should be set apart rather than the ad hoc arrangements made over recent years.
The Championship itself was dominated by Kishan Lakhani (Long Eaton) and current champion Mike Barnes (Gambit) who successfully saw off all the opposition. Their individual game was drawn. In the Minor event, newcomer Chen Ze (Mansfield) won his first four games (which included a full point bye) but a last round loss to Daniel Lin (West Nottingham) ensured that the title ended in a three-way tie between Daniel, Chen and Graham Gibson (Gambit). Despite the relatively small entry both competitions were well contested and trouble-free.
Unfortunately, the question of play-offs (not mentioned on the entry form) then had to be considered. The Championship itself has been decided by tie-break since the early 1980s when the event moved to a congress rather than playing in people’s front rooms. Mike played one play-off game, beating Kishan and thus retaining the title. The Under 125 event ended in a contrived three-way tie. At the time there was some debate about the method of tie-break and I am referring the matter to the powers that be. The situation needs a good look at, not withstanding the problems this year.
Finally, can I thank the players who competed for making the event a success and on behalf of the Notts Chess Association can I thank those who made donations towards the costs.
N.B. Mike Barnes subsequently offered to share the title and the trophy was engraved with both names. Following a review by the Executive Committee in January 2015, the official list of winners was amended accordingly.
=bye: Half-point bye claimed in advance
+bye: Full-point bye (odd number of players)