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News Archive 2010

Last updated 31 December 2010

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31 Dec 10 | Friendly Match v Hong Kong
George Pyrich reports the start of our delayed friendly against Hong Kong. Good to see the former UK colony still flying its own flag after the transfer of sovereignty to China in 1997, and well done to George and Chris Champion for finalising the pairings. We look forward to good games and friendly correspondence. The match is webserver only, 10 boards, and starts on 15th January, 2011.

30 Dec 10 | ICCF President's Message
To all Correspondence Chess Friends,
Every year at the same period it is now an established tradition for the ICCF President to send to all Delegates, ICCF officials, Correspondence Chess friends all over the world and their families, his seasonal greetings, wishing to all of you a Happy New Year 2011.
Some days ago, the final version of the Minutes of the Congress held in Antalya last October has been distributed to all Delegates and they are now available of iccf.com so that you can read what has been decided by the Delegates and what will be implemented by the Executive Board throughout the year.
I am glad to announce to all chess friends that the ICCF Executive Board has awarded to the Finnish Federation the host of the 2011 ICCF Congress. The Congress will be held in Järvenpää from July, 30th till August 5th in the hotel Scandic, the same hotel that hosted the 1991 ICCF Congress. More details will be sent very soon by the General Secretary to all Member Federations Delegates. I would also like to thank the Austrian, Polish and South African Federations for submitting a bid for the 2011 Congress. They were all very good proposals and we hope to have the chance to visit them in the future.
2011 will be the 60th anniversary of ICCF – the diamond year – and many specific open tournaments will be organized for celebrating this anniversary – a webserver world cup organized by the Polish Federation, a postal open, a Chess960 open... Meanwhile, the entries for the Direct Entry 5th webserver anniversary have started since December, 15th (http://www.iccf-webchess.com/Message.aspx?message=324) and more than 130 players have already registered included more than 25 titled players. It already proves to be a very successful tournament. Besides, all ICCF traditional tournament (promotional class tournaments, thematic tournament, veterans world cups, world championship cycle – preliminaries, semi final, candidates - , preliminaries of the Olympiads by post,...) will be played next year as well as the final of the 27th Correspondence Chess World Championship.
I wish you a Happy New Year 2011 and many successes in your chess games!
Amici Sumus,
Eric Ruch, ICCF President

17 Dec 10 | History of Correspondence Chess
Eric Ruch, ICCF President, announces that volume 1 of his History of Correspondence Chess in the 19th Century is now on sale, covering the period from the origins of CC to 1840. The work is in French and is available at 35€ (including p&p). For further information, please contact George Pyrich.

14 Dec 10 | ICCF Postal Olympiad 19 Announced
Marco Caressa, ICCF Title Tournaments Commissioner writes to advise that this event will start in March 2011 providing at least 18 teams enter. The Olympiad will be postal (optionally email if players agree), and played over preliminary and final stages by 4-player teams. Entries close on 21 January 2011. The SCCA will cover all entry fees. For further information, please contact George Pyrich.

02 Dec 10 | Thor Løvholt Memorial Team Announced
George Pyrich has announced the following team to represent Scotland:
  1. David Cumming
  2. Geoff Lloyd
  3. Prof Alastair Dawson
  4. Dr Kevin Paine
  5. Andrew Macmillen
  6. Alan Armstrong
Many thanks to all who responded and good luck to everyone involved!

01 Dec 10 | ICCF Direct Entry 5th Webserver Anniversary Tournament
Jean-Christophe Chazalette, DE Commissioner and DE5A Tournament Organiser, writes to invite entries for this event, which will use direct entry for payment of fees and prizes. Registration begins on 15 Dec 10 and closes on 01 Mar 11, with the preliminary round starting on 05 Apr 11. Sections are expected to contain 7-11 players, and semi-finals and a final will follow. The event is webserver based, 10moves/30 days, conditional moves possible, and rating norms are expected. Entry fee is 8,10€. Prizes for preliminary and semi-final rounds are free entry to DE events, and in the final 15% of fees received plus 450,00€ guaranteed by ICCF. For further information, please contact George Pyrich.

01 Dec 10 | Thor Løvholt Memorial Reminder
George Pyrich is still short of players for the Scotland team in this event. Full details are provided below (01 Nov 10), but as a quick recap teams will consist of 6 players with rating strengths under-2300 (boards 1-2), under-2250 (boards 3-4) and under-2200 (boards 5-6). The event will run on the webserver and will start in January 2011. Entries are free. If you feel like some friendly competition on the international scene, please contact George Pyrich without delay.

23 Nov 10 | OM extends database licence period
Opening Master have arranged to extend all SCCA licences to 31 January 2011. Our agreement with them provided for a period of 1 year from each individual date of registration. This arrangement makes their administration easier and it means that all subscribers get a minimum of 1 year with early respondents enjoying 13-14 months.

23 Nov 10 | Social Stars and Perth tie in Webserver League
Colin Macgregor now reports a tie for first place in the 2010 Webserver League - once again involving Social Stars and Perth Correspondents! Both teams scored 11½/16 (71%) and shared their individual tussle 2-2. This pair just can't be separated...

22 Nov 10 | Social Stars and Perth tie in Postal League
Dave Savage reports yet another tie for first place in the 2010 Postal League - the fourth year in succession involving Social Stars (aka Social A) and Perth Correspondents! Hard for the others to muster many points with two such strong teams in contention, but congratulations to the joint winners again.

22 Nov 10 | ICCF World Ladies Championship
Michael Millstone, ICCF General Secretary and Marco Caressa, ICCF Title Tournaments Commissioner write to announce the 10th semifinal of the World Ladies Championship. This will be a webserver event, with sections of 9-13 players depending on entries. In addition to players who qualify on performance in previous finals and semifinals, plus those graded 2100+, member federations are able to nominate participants - Scotland holds 1 such entitlement. For further information, please contact George Pyrich before 31 December, 2010.

01 Nov 10 | Friendly Match v Cape Verde
George Pyrich reports yet another friendly about to start, this time against international newcomers Cape Verde - an island archipelago in the Atlantic and a former Portugese colony. We look forward to good games and friendly correspondence against the Cape Verdeans. The match is webserver only, 15 boards, and starts on 15th November.

01 Nov 10 | Thor Løvholt Memorial
Gian-Maria Tani, ICCF-Europa Zonal Director, writes to announce the Thor Lövholt Memorial, a team tournament designed for medium-rated players. Thor was president of the Norwegian federation from 2000-06 and passed away in November 2009. Teams will consist of 6 players with rating strengths under-2300 (boards 1-2), under-2250 (boards 3-4) and under-2200 (boards 5-6). The event will run on the webserver and will start in January 2011. Entries are free. The idea is to field teams from each federation, but TO Neil Limbert (ENG) is happy to form composite teams using individual players. For further information, please contact George Pyrich.

27 Oct 10 | ICCF Fee Reductions
George Pyrich reports from Antalya that ICCF has converted its playing fees from Swiss Francs to Euros, and reduced most of its charges at the same time. The new ICCF rates become effective on 1st January 2011, but the SCCA has decided to implement them with immediate effect. You can view the new rates on the ICCF Fees page. For further information, please contact George Pyrich.

27 Oct 10 | Friendly Match v Finland
George Pyrich has completed arrangements with his Finnish counterparts Antero Harju Sorronrinne (postal) and Leo Lahdenmäki (webserver), and the friendly match between the two countries will start on 15 November. The 30 boards contain 22 webserver and 8 postal pairings, with the Finns moving first in the postal games. We fared worst last time out against the Finns, so once again are hoping for better luck this time - enjoy your games!

22 Oct 10 | ICCF Grading List 2010/4 Published
The fourth quarterly list of 2010 is published on the website today. Look under publications/grading list to see the web page, or go to members/downloads for the pdf version. For further information, please contact George Pyrich.

22 Oct 10 | Magazine 111 Published
The third e-mag of 2010 is being distributed by email and post today. As usual, members will be asked to download their e-mags from the secure Members' page on the website, while complimentary e-mags will be attached to the email. Download times will be slightly longer than last quarter. If you have any problems with this edition, please drop me an email at: webmaster@scottishcca.co.uk and I'll do what I can to help. Enjoy the read!

17 Oct 10 | RCCA Gold Tournament
Richard Beecham tells me he’s about to start play in the RCCA Gold section organised by Sergey Grodzensky, president of the Russian federation. It’s a category 11 GM event, with 17 players and a GM norm of 10½, so it will be tough going. Very best of luck to Richard!

15 Oct 10 | ICCF Interzonal Team Tournament
Gian-Maria Tani, ICCF-Europa Zonal Director, writes to announce the 2010 Interzonal Team Tournament. Each ICCF zone will be represented by one team, but Europe, the most populous, will field three. Teams consist of 8 players playing 2 games against the same board number in opposing teams, 10 games in all. Play will be on the webserver and is expected to start in December, with entries closing on 15 November. The Europa teams will be selected to involve as many countries as possible, then in grade order. If you would like to play or need further further information, please contact George Pyrich.

05 Oct 10 | Graham wins 2010-11 Championship
Stuart Graham is now uncatchable in the 2010-11 Championship with a superb 6/7 - draws against Cumming and Mackintosh, and wins against everybody else. It's taken a while for this to percolate through to the News page, so apologies to Stuart for the delay. It's his first Championship success, so many congratulations to him!

24 Sep 10 | IM title for Matheis
Tom Matheis has secured a draw against GM Jacques Kuiper of the Netherlands on board 3 in the Olympiad XVIII Preliminaries. This result completes Tom's games, and he finished with 4/8 to secure his 3rd and final IM norm. George Pyrich is hopeful that the ICCF administration process will complete in time to allow the certificate and medal to be presented at the upcoming Congress in Turkey. Tom becomes our 10th IM and deserves a big round of applause!

02 Sep 10 | Friendly Match v Sweden
George Pyrich has completed arrangements with his Swedish counterpart Sture Olsson, and the friendly match between the two countries will start on 15 September. The 32 boards contain 23 webserver and 9 postal pairings. We got a bit of a drubbing last time out against the Swedes, so are hoping for better fortune this time - enjoy your games!

11 Aug 10 | ICCF Seeks Marketing Director
Michael Millstone, ICCF General Secretary, writes to advise than an election for Marketing Director will be held during the upcoming Congress in Antalya, Turkey during October. If you are interested in this post, you must be nominated by your national federation, be a current member, and complete a declaration of your willingness to stand (which may include a personal statement in support of your candidature). For further information, please contact George Pyrich.

02 Aug 10 | Magazine 110 Erratum
The totals shown for 2009-10 income and expenditure in the printed magazine (Accounts, page 5) are incorrect. Income was £2978.93 (shown wrongly as £3726.23) and expenditure was £3147.99 (shown as £2322.72). Other figures are reported correctly. The mistakes have been corrected in the emag, though some early downloads and complimentary copies may be affected. The website accounts page shows the correct figures. Apologies for the glitch!

02 Aug 10 | Magazine 110 Published
The second e-mag of 2010 is being distributed by email and post today. As usual, members will be asked to download their e-mags from the secure Members' page on the website, while complimentary e-mags will be attached to the email. Download times will be slightly shorter than last quarter. If you have any problems with this edition, please drop me an email at: webmaster@scottishcca.co.uk and I'll do what I can to help. Enjoy the read!

02 Aug 10 | ICCF Grading List 2010/3 Published
The third quarterly list of 2010 is published on the website today. Look under publications/grading list to see the web page, or go to members/downloads for the pdf version. For further information, please contact George Pyrich.

23 Jun 10 | SM Norms for Anderson & Dawson
At the Executive Committee meeting in Perth on 20 June, Gordon Anderson was awarded 2 grading-based SM norms resulting from 2300+ ratings in the 2009 and 2010 ICCF lists. Professor Alastair Dawson secured his first SM norm as a result of winning the 08-09 Championship outright. Congratulations to both players!

23 Jun 10 | 2010 AGM Highlights
At the AGM in Perth on 20 June, the following items were noted:
  1. Full audited accounts showing a deficit of £169 were produced by Gordon Anderson. Alan Hind was reappointed as auditor.
  2. All existing committee members were re-elected. Colin Macgregor will gradually take over secretary duties.
  3. SCCA membership subscriptions and entry fees remain unchanged.
  4. ICCF entry fees are likely to be changed after the October ICCF Congress.
  5. Faster time controls will be introduced for most 2011 domestic events (refer minutes).
  6. Scottish Master (SM) qualifying rules were updated (refer minutes).
  7. Scottish Championship entrants must play a minimum of 8 games from 2011.
Members can download AGM and Executive Committee minutes from the members download page.

09 Jun 10 | 2nd IM Norm for Matheis
Tom Matheis has scored an undefeated 6/10 on board 1 in the NATT VI event, achieving an SIM norm in the process. Tom already holds an IM norm, but his games total is only 20 and so he needs a 3rd norm to qualify for the IM title. Congratulations to Tom, and here's hoping the final leg isn't long delayed!

26 May 10 | Upcoming Friendly Matches
George Pyrich has two new friendlies in the pipeline but both not starting until September. Sweden are looking to play a match with 20 server and 4 or 5 postal boards, while Hong Kong are interested in a 10-board server challenge. If you're interested in playing, please drop a note with your preferences to: George Pyrich.

25 May 10 | ICCF 4th Webchess Open
Valer Eugen Demian writes to announce the 4th Webchess Open, with unrestricted entry. Players may submit multiple entries, and players new to ICCF will receive one free entry. The tournament is webserver-based and will be played in three stages: preliminaries, semifinal and final. Preliminaries will consist of groups of 7 players. Registration is via national federations or direct entry and closes on June 30th. Preliminaries will start in mid-July 2010, with an approximate end date in July 2012. Entry fee for SCCA members is £8. For further information, and to enter, please contact George Pyrich.

14 May 10 | 2nd SCCA Webserver Open Starts
Colin Macgregor reports that we have three preliminary sections off and running. The official start date is 24 May, but the administrative efficiencies of setting up tables on the webserver has allowed players to start 1 day after entries closed! We welcome a number of new players to this event, and hope that they, and our regular members, enjoy their games.

22 Apr 10 | Magazine 109 Published
The first e-mag of 2010 is being distributed by email and post today. As usual, members will be asked to download their e-mags from the secure Members' page on the website, while complimentary e-mags will be attached to the email. Download times will be slightly shorter than last quarter. If you have any problems with this edition, please drop me an email at: webmaster@scottishcca.co.uk and I'll do what I can to help. Enjoy the read!

14 Apr 10 | ICCF Grading List 2010/2 Published
The second quarterly list of 2010 is published on the website today. Look under publications/grading list to see the web page, or go to members/downloads for the pdf version. For further information, please contact George Pyrich.

08 Apr 10 | 2nd SCCA Webserver Open
Colin Macgregor announces that the 2nd SCCA Webserver Open will commence on 24 May 2010. The event will be run on the same lines as the 1st Open, i.e. a 'Scots Home and Away' open to all Scottish players worldwide, without the requirement to be an SCCA member, and with no entry fee needed. A prize fund of £200 is available. The format will be preliminary sections followed by a final. Entries close on 10 May. To play, or for further information, please contact Colin Macgregor before 10 May.

02 Apr 10 | ICCF Master Norm Scottish Qualifiers
Marco Caressa, ICCF Title Tournaments Commissioner, writes to list the Scottish players who are eligible to play in Master Norm events. Messrs Gordon Anderson, Raymond Baxter, Alan Bell, Alan Brown, Tom Craig, Alastair Dawson, Simon Gillam, Philip Giulian, David Kilgour, George Livie, Iain Mackintosh, Tom Matheis, Ian Reeman and Iain Swan all satisfy the eligibility criteria. To play, or for further information, please contact George Pyrich.

26 Mar 10 | 3rd ICCF Veterans' World Cup
Michael Millstone, ICCF General Secretary, writes to announce that the 3rd ICCF Veterans' World Cup will start on 1 September 2010. You can read the full notice on VWC3. The closing date for entries is 17 July. This event is open to players who are 60+ and is organised by Alan Borwell, with prizes sponsored by the SCCA. The format is three rounds: prelims, semi-final and final, and the rate of play is 10 moves in 40 days. Entry via SCCA is £12/section (cheques payable to SCCA). To play, or for further information, please contact George Pyrich before 1 July.

22 Mar 10 | Friendly Match v Lithuania
George Pyrich has organised a further friendly international against Lithuania, due to commence on April 1st. It will be contested over 10 webserver boards, with the time control 10 moves in 40 days. The well-matched pairings are complete, and players may start their games immediately. Best wishes to all involved!

18 Mar 10 | ICCF Direct Entry Commissioner
George Pyrich, with his ICCF hat on, is looking for a Direct Entry Commissioner. This post is a member of the ICCF Management Committee, reports directly to the Finance Director, and serves as an arm on behalf of those Member Federations that choose to participate in the Direct Entry Scheme. Typical duties include:
  • Signing up new players to ICCF. Collect personal data; issue ICCF IDs; web-server passwords; and introducing those new players to their Federations.
  • Determine player eligibility for entering tournaments with qualifications or restrictions.
  • Screening players for entries on the ICCF suspension list.
  • Processing player entries, crediting Federation accounts, and communicating registration activity to the General Secretary, respective Tournament Organizer, and Federation Delegates.
  • As often the first point of contact of ICCF, acting as ambassador to ICCF, educating and directing new players to particular functionality or referral to appropriate ICCF officials.
Candidates must have:
  1. Hardware – a reliable computer with a standard e-mail interface. If candidate does any travel, candidate must also have a reliable laptop with the ability to conduct DE Commissioner duties while away from home.
  2. Connectivity – a dedicated and reliable Internet connection. Candidate must also have a backup contingency plan in the event of extended Internet outages.
The DE Commissioner is often the first person to be in contact with new players. The goal of Direct Entry is to receive, acknowledge, and process payment and applications within 24-hours; 48-hours maximum. There should be few instances throughout the year where times should extend beyond this service goal. The DE Commissioner will be required to provide a monthly DE report outlining all DE activities, plus payments, and reimbursements. The jobholder will also be required to provide a report to each year’s Congress. For further information, please contact George Pyrich.

03 Mar 10 | Friendly Match v Scheming Mind
George Pyrich has organised a friendly international against the cosmopolitan Scheming Mind, due to commence on March 15th. It will be contested over 20 webserver boards, with the time control 10 moves in 50 days. The pairings are complete, and players may start their games from today. Best wishes to all involved!

25 Feb 10 | James Cairncross Information
Alan McGowan, the Chess Scotland historian, writes to ask if anyone can supply details of James Cairncross, the Scottish CC player who was 1st= with RW Bonham in the 1946/7 British Correspondence Championship.
Cairncross, who was born in Hawick 1910, was at one point mistaken for John Cairncross of the Cambridge Spy Ring. Tim Harding's Chess Mail No. 1/2004 had material confirming that an error had been made in this regard.
Caircross was deeply involved in postal chess, nationally and internationally, in the years immediately after WWII. He played in several international matches, and correspondence 'Olympiads', representing the BCCA.
Cairncross's work took him to different parts of Britain. At the time he won the British as shown above, he was in Hertfordshire. He later went to work and live in Lesmahagow, and Alan has obtained a lot of personal detail on Cairncross with the assistance of a local historian there.
If you have access to any Cairncross games or personal history, please contact Alan McGowan by email.

07 Feb 10 | Friendly Match v Ecuador
George Pyrich has organised a friendly international against Ecuador, due to commence on February 21st. It will be contested over 20 webserver boards, with the time control 10 moves in 50 days. The pairings are complete, and players may start their games from today. Best wishes to all involved!

07 Feb 10 | World Championship 2010 Semi-Finals
Marco Caressa, ICCF Title Tournaments Commissioner, writes to remind us that all semi-finals of the 34th World Championship will start on 10 June 2010. The closing date for entries is end-April. Member federations may nominate players for this stage, but there will be no further nominations available for the remainder of 2010. Scotland can nominate up to three players. To play, or for further information, please contact George Pyrich before 10 April.

22 Jan 10 | Magazine 108 Postage Rate Problem
A number of subscribers to the printed magazine have drawn my attention to a surcharge being levied by the Royal Mail this week. It looks as though a combination of thicker paper used for the magazine cover plus new envelopes bought from our printers has pushed the weight over 100 grammes. My apologies to all of you who have had to pay additional postage and admin charges, and I promise to weigh the next edition before licking any stamps! If you'd like to be reimbursed for your expenses, please drop me an email at: webmaster@scottishcca.co.uk.

18 Jan 10 | Magazine 108 Published
The fourth and final e-mag of 2009 is being distributed by email and post today. As usual, members will be asked to download their e-mags from the secure Members' page on the website, while complimentary e-mags will be attached to the email. Download times will be slightly longer than last quarter. If you have any problems with this edition, please drop me an email at: webmaster@scottishcca.co.uk and I'll do what I can to help. Enjoy the read!

18 Jan 10 | ICCF Grading List 2010/1 Published
The first quarterly list of 2010 is published on the website and in the magazine today. For further information, please contact George Pyrich.

12 Jan 10 | World Championship 2010 Prelims SCCA Qualifiers
Marco Caressa, ICCF Title Tournaments Commissioner, writes to remind us of the SCCA players eligible to play in the preliminary round. Tom Craig, Phil Giulian, David Kilgour, George Livie and Iain Mackintosh all qualify on the basis of titles and grade. For further information, please contact George Pyrich.

07 Jan 10 | 2010 Domestic Events
Jim Anderson, Colin Macgregor and Kevin Paine have been doing a great job loading up cross tables and pairings on to the webserver for this season's events. Links to these tables will be added to our domestic event pages over the next few days, so check the Sitemap page for updates.