This annual event is usually held in Whittlesford, south of Cambridge. But this year it will move to Bury St Edmunds, making it more attractive to Suffolk (and Norfolk) clubs.
The date and venue is Sunday 1 March, at Moreton Hall Community Centre (home of the Bury St Edmunds Chess Club).
Teams consist of four players from the EACU but not necessarily from the same club. EACU players are those living in or from clubs located in or affiliated to Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire, Norfolk or Suffolk. Also eligible are people born in the county, with five years’ residence in the county at any time, or currently attending a school, college or university in the county.
There are four sections:
There is no grading limit for the Open section.
The Team 600 competition is for teams with an aggregate grade of 600 or less, though for this calculation anyone with a grade under 100 will be taken as 100.
The Team 500 competition is for teams with an aggregate grade of 500 or less, though for this calculation anyone with a grade under 75 will be taken as 75.
The Team 400 competition is for teams with an aggregate grade of 400 or less, though for this calculation anyone with a grade under 50 will be taken as 50.
There will be an inscribed digital clock or a cash prize for the team with most game points in each category, but the number and value of prizes will depend on the number of entries. If there are 10 entries two weeks before the event the EACU has undertaken to buy a trophy.
The event uses the county match format of two rounds, but starting at 10.00 and 14.15. The time limit is 36 moves in 90 minutes. then 20 minutes to finish the game. Alternatively, by agreement, a time limit of 36 moves in 80 minutes, plus 10 minutes add on after move 36, plus 15 seconds per move from move 1.
If games are played with no increment, then in the quickplay finish, the provisions in Appendix G4 of the 2014 Laws of Chess will apply. Draw claims on the basis that an opponent cannot win by normal means and/or has been making no effort to win by normal means, will not be allowed.
The exact format of the competition will depend on the number of entries.
The entry fee is £20 per team, payable on the day. Any player who is not a member of the ECF needs to pay an extra £4. The clubs that won the top division of the six EACU county leagues (Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Hertfordshire, Norfolk, Suffolk and Bury Area League) last season are entitled to enter a team of entirely their club players at half price into the Open.
Tea and coffee will be provided free of charge. There is a bar at the centre and a pub nearby. The centre also provides Sunday lunches and a menu is available on request.
Enquiries and entries should be made to Patrick Ribbands or to 01223 842197. Entries by 15 February if possible, though an early indication that you might raise a team would also be much appreciated. Later entries are at the organiser’s discretion.
If you do not have the four players for a team, Patrick may be able to put you in touch with others who would like to play.