2020 CHESS Online – Worldwide Championship League
A long over due introduction and catch up story!
(Hopefully shorter than War & Peace!)
Castlehill Chess Club along with our city buddies, Dundee Chess Club have over the years worked together in competitions where a lot of travel is involved. While a lot of players love playing chess, most have busy lives and can only fit in chess on a set club night and within their own area. So when it comes to outside competitions where you have to travel a lot for the matches and in a lot of cases, making it a full day’s commitment. There are a lot less players willing to take that on, or are not able to take it on due to family commitments, etc. This meant a lot less players available for these competitions, which are mostly team events and sometimes we as a club struggled to for fill our commitments. The same was true with our City rivals, Dundee Chess Club, so we agreed to work together for the benefit of both our clubs, the City of Dundee and the players who want to play in these events, and so “Dundee City” was born!
This collaboration between the two clubs has been more successful than any of us thought possible and has given both clubs and players a stable platform and environment to play chess from. The main driving force behind all of this was the SNCL (Scottish National Chess League) in which both chess clubs sometimes struggled to bring full teams, or had to have less team’s entered than players available. With us joining together under the one banner “Dundee City”, we could field more teams and have the necessary cover to for fill the fixtures. This not only gave more players an opportunity to play in such events, but it also strengthened our teams and this has bore fruit when “Dundee City A” became champions in 2018-19! As memberships of both club grew we could now possibly enter teams again under our own club banner, but both clubs had no desire to change what is not broken! This was a success story and one both Castlehill and Dundee wanted to be a part of and work together as a united team for the benefit of not only the two clubs, but the players involved and the City of Discovery, Dundee!
4NCL & Junior 4NCL (National Chess League)
Due to the pandemic, chess competitions, leagues, etc moved online. New competitions sprung up and Dundee City entered in these competitions like the 4NCL & Junior 4 NCL. I have reported on these competitions and they have proved very popular and successful for our two chess clubs.
In 2020 under the driving force of David Findlay, Dundee City entered a new competition called 2020 Chess. The majority of you will be saying “2020 Chess what? Never heard of it? That makes two of us and the reason for this? I never got my head around it with the little snippets I had heard. David kept sending me emails on it but it all sounded a bit confusing and chaotic? No set date or time for the matches? The number of players per team changed in every match played, from 3 to 10? Matches organised, then postponed? The team numbers agreed, but changed at the last minute? As an organiser I could not get my head around it and because of this I have never reported on this competition which of course was wrong as it did involve our chess clubs! Well thanks to an invitation to join and play for one of our Dundee City teams in friendly I got to know more about it and how it worked, so I am now going to put right the silence of the past and bring this event into the forefront of our club reports along with 4NCL & Junior 4NCL.
David Findlay under the banner of “Dundee City” entered two teams into this event in 2020. The concept was an ambitious one to ask clubs, National teams, Schools, Universities, etc (established or newly made up) from around the world to compete together in one competition! Now this had obvious problems not least, the different time zones in the world! One has to take off their hat to applaud such a grand plan and the problems they would have to overcome. It now all made sense about why you had to play matches at different and sometimes strange times, to fit in all the different time-zones! The number of players per team, per match now made more sense as the orgainsers took onboard the fact clubs and groups of players depending on where in the world they lived could vary in size from the big clubs with multiple teams, to a bunch of friends on a small tropical island and they could all take part! Yes if you are a big club with a big pool of players and face a small team with only 4 players, you will have selection issues and it may not suit, but the small team of 4 players get to compete in something special, and against players they never thought possible from their small pacific island in the middle of nowhere! What a concept, amazing!
Due to both hemispheres being involved and the different time zones it was decided the best time-control would be of the shorter variety and so all matches are played with 10 minutes + 5 seconds and take place on chess.com. You also play your opponent twice (B & W) This has proved so successful that we are now into a second season with more and more clubs, countries, States, Islands etc involved! This competition and being able to play chess online has given ordinary club players a chance to play players from around the world, not just in their own backyard! The standard of players can vary from beginner to titles players (CM; FM;IM; WFM to even GM`s!), a truly global event, all united under that truly great game/sport of “CHESS”! A big thumbs up to Peter Hornsby founder tournament director of 2020 Chess!
So there you have it and hopefully that has given you a little understanding of what this event is all about before I start reporting on it.
A big, big thank you must go to David Findlay (Dundee Chess Club) for starting it all off and pulling it all together and making it work in what is a difficult and yes at time’s, chaotic format! A big thank you too all the players who have helped make it a success so far and put Dundee City on the map in this worldwide event, a truly global competition! I will be catching up on this in another post, but felt we needed an introduction before hand! BTW this competition has it`s own website (see link below)!
SNOCL (Scottish National Online Chess League)
Speaking of new competitions? Castlehill CC & Dundee CC under the now familiar banner “Dundee City” has decided to enter this new competition which is an online take on the “OTB SNCL”! It is played on chess.com and the time-controls are 25 minutes + 10 seconds. Like the SNCL, it will take place on a Sunday, about once a month, 6 rounds. There will be two matches played on the Sunday, one am and one pm, just like the SNCL! More information to follow so watch out for the reports! So far we have 5 teams entered! If you are interested in being part of the pool of players, please contact Ray Noble ASAP. Website on way!
Phew the end!