On 18th March 2012, John Alfred sent an email to the secretary, requesting an EGM. This email was accompanied with a list of 30 names who apparently supported the motions. As only 28 of the 30 were actual paid up members of the ICU, the request was invalid. However, the chairman felt the request was serious enough to warrant a committee meeting, which was set for the following Sunday, 25th March.
On the morning of the 25th March, John Alfred sent another email to the secretary with more than 30 names supporting his call for an EGM. That evening, the membership officer, Daniel Lynch, verified that there are more than 30 fully paid up members calling for an EGM.
The motions to be discussed are as follows:
a. That the New NCC Rules approved at the ICU meeting on 15-Jan-2012 introduced mid-season, be cancelled for the current season, 2011-2012.
and if Motion 'a' fails...
b. That the New rule which stipulates that a player needs to have played 3 games instead of 2 games to qualify to play in the NCC, be returned to 2 games.
Opinion of the committee
The committee voted twice on the introduction to the new NCC rules. On both occasions it was passed by a majority of those executive members who attended the meeting. The following points were made by some of the members of the committee during discussions on this matter.
At the 2011 AGM, David Fitzsimons proposed a motion to return the NCC to the way it was, when only a single team per province played. He was persuaded that this was too big a change, and he accepted that a subcommittee should be formed to propose changes to the NCC rules.
At our first ICU executive committee meeting, it was agreed that the subcommittee should be Gerry Graham, Martin Schmidt and Pete Morriss. David Fitzsimons had already declined to sit on the subcommittee.
The subcommittee finished their work in December 2011. The rules were approved the executive committee on 15-1-2012.
Chess clubs are one of the best things about Irish chess. Most players belong to a club, and they are proud to play for that club, win or lose. The most successful club teams, and here I (Jonathan O'Connor) can only speak about the Leinster division 1 league, are the ones who have good team spirit and few if any subs. One year, in the last round of the Armstrong Cup, a team played 4 very strong players (all 2200+) who had not played before. At the time this was perfectly legal. However, as most clubs felt this was not in the right spirit of club chess, the LCU changed their rules to prevent this happening again. In contrast, Kilkenny had a very strong team with a GM and 2 IMs playing. As they played in almost every match during the year, no other club had an issue with it.
The new rules are about encouraging clubs to use the players that play for them regularly, rather than replacing these players with "ringers".
It should also be noted that new rules for the 2011 NCC were also introduced with a similar notice time of 3 1/2 months. Nobody objected then.
It should be noted that Leinster and Connaught leagues are played 1 game per day, whereas the Munster leagues play 2 games per day. This means that Munster teams must bring foreign players over twice for them to qualify for the NCC, but Connaught and Leinster teams have to bring foreign players over three times.