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AGM 2009 - Tournament Director's Report
The ICU has healthy weekend Chess event schedule which normally begins with the City of Dublin Championship in early September and runs right through to the Irish Senior Championships itself in July. These are run, for the most part, by Clubs and committees and have been kept going with a lot of hard work and dedication from a small group of people for a long number of years.
But in these, more financially challenging times, the ICU has undertaken to support these tournaments by grants, where possible, in order to help maintain what's seen as the life's blood of our game in Ireland. The normal events calendar includes national tournaments in Dublin, Cork, Limerick, Galway, Kilkenny, Ennis, Drogheda, etc with some venues hosting more than one event per year. Without these competitions, I believe our game would not survive and they must be supported as much as possible.
Special mention should be made of Michael Crowe who each year undertakes to run the senior Irish Championship in July, making the tournament director's job a lot easier I can tell you. This is one of the major undertakings of the ICU calendar each year and Michael does a great job despite the more challenging economic outlook, the event lost a major sponsor last year.
The National Club Championships were run in a new format this year, held in Ballinasloe, Co. Galway in April, this competition was open to any club in Ireland (North or South) who could manage to field a sufficiently strong team to compete. This year, six teams battled for the two qualifying slots in the European Club Cup and those two places were won by Kilkenny and Ennis with Galway missing out by a narrow margin. As it turned out, Kilkenny couldn’t make the European Club Cup and Galway weren't really afforded the time they'd have liked to put together a replacement team and so Ennis were our sole representatives in the E.C.C. (see Ennis site for further details).
One competition I'd love to see revived is the National Interprovincial Championships, the event where a 10 person team from each of the four provinces compete. This was last run in the mid 1990s and if I'm re-elected to the post of Tournament Director, it's one I'd love to get going again.
As part of my duties, I keep the ICU calendar up to date on our excellent web site so if you run an event and it doesn’t appear on the ICU web site, please drop me an e-mail and I will be glad to add it to our calendar of event.