65th Herts Congress, 12th - 13th November 2016

County Hall in Hertford is once again the venue for the Herts Congress on 12th - 13th November 2016. Organised by the the Herts Chess Association it offers 5 round swiss tournaments in the Open, U170, U140 and U110 categories. The prize fund is £2000+. It's an ECF Grand Prix event as well as providing a British Championship Qualifying Place.
The playing conditions are excellent and there is a large free car park. Chess and Bridge will be there with a bookshop. On site catering provides cooked breakfasts, hot lunches, and evening snacks. There is a coffee shop too.

Closed County Competition Rules, 26th September 2016

The rules for the season ahead are at issue 23, http://www.hertschess.com/node/4. Here is a summary of the main changes.
Rule 3.6.3 gives the away team White on odd boards in the HCA league, but not in the U120 league. .
Rules 3.7.3, 4.1.2 and 4.2.8 introduce the option of Fischer Timing - at all moves in 70 minutes, plus 10 added seconds per move per player - as a rate of play in the league, U120 league and knock-out competitions respectively.

Executive Meeting 23rd September 2016

The meeting that precedes the new season and which discusses league fixtures, recent rule changes, etc, is set for Friday 23rd September from 7.30 pm prompt. League fixtures commence from Mon 3rd October.
Hertford Chess Club host the meeting: Chauncy Room, the Hertford Club, Bull Plain, Hertford, SG14 1DT.
Prior to the meeting would all clubs please ensure all their contact details are up to date on the results website, http://www.e2-e4.co.uk/chess-results/results.htm.

Archivist Wanted

The HCA has a collection of information going back almost to its formation in 1901. An archivist is needed to maintain and add to this as necessary. He\she may also advise the HCA the best way to make use of these archives. They largely comprise written records but more recently digital storage methods have been used. This website could be used to make some of this information available if appropriate. If interested in this role within the HCA, please contact the Secretary, Alan Brewis alanl.brewis@ntlworld.com.

12.3.16 U140s qualify for ECF stages as S3 and face Notts in quarter-final

In a tense encounter, the U140s drew 8-8 with Surrey and thus gained qualification by the narrowest of margins. All started well with a full team, and even Surrey managed to avoid a default thanks to their well-organised captain who managed to find a short-notice replacement for their board 16. However the chess itself didn't go quite so smoothly, and despite an early win for Terry O'Sullivan followed up by Martin Clode and Cecil Sloan and number of solid draws, deputy captain Corrinne found herself 6-8 down with just the current and previous captains still playing.

U140s lose 6-10 at Kent at Dartford

The U140 team lost 6-10 to current ECF title holders Kent on Saturday 6th Feb. Full result follows below. The team still stands a decent chance of qualification if they beat Surrey in March, but we await results from the other matches played on 20th Feb to be sure of the situation. Assuming Surrey beat Essex and Middlesex beat Sussex, we should only need a clear win on March 12th to progress.


Open Team Fixture

Peter Rice, team captain, has decided to default the two Open matches scheduled for February 7th of as a result of only being able to muster 8 players - and with only 4 of these over 161. He will also default the final fixture dates of March 13th. Peter is determined, no matter what, to field a team for the fixtures on February 28th. This way disruption to the EACU championships will be minimised as we will have played each team once. Players interested in playing in these last Open team fixtures to contact Peter please.


U140s beat half a Sussex side

Sussex had managed to withdraw late from their previous away fixture, but I had been in contact with their captain the previous week who had told me he would inform me of any issues. When we had a late withdrawal due to illness I had a feeling of deja vu from the previous match against Essex, but my fears turned out to be unfounded (and I owe someone a fiver as a result...)