Shropshire Chess Association 2009 AGM

Held at Shifnal & Telford Chess Club,

1st  July 2009.

Meeting Commenced at 7:40pm

Attendees Roger Brown(RB), Vincent Crean, John Casewell(JC), Keith Tabner(KT), Nick Rutter(NR), Toby Neal(TN), Richard Thompson(RT), Francis Best(FB), Colin Roberts(CR), Iain Wilson(IW), Eric Inglis, Fred Harris(FH), Brian Malone, Ian Davies(ID), John Bashall, Richard Gillespie, Andy Carr(AC), Steve Rooney(SR), Stefan Tennant(ST), John Randle, Glyn Randle, Glyn Pugh(GP), Andy Tunks, John Tunks(JT), Derrick Powell(DP), Neil Donaldson, Jason Kenderdine, Tim Skidmore & Darren Terry .

1.      Apologies for absence George Viszokai(GV),

2.      Minutes of the 2008 AGM – FB commented that he had been referred to as FT this has been changed on the master copy. Also said that he had been asked to review our child protection policy. He proposed we adopt the ECF policy. This was passed. The aspect of insurance was referred to the council meeting. Minutes accepted.

3.      Officers reports

a.      Chairman – IW no report just an acknowledgement of his existence.

b.      General Secretary – CR asked if any proposals to be heard at the AGM could be sent to him during the season. DP had appealed RT’s decision in his game v GV. The disputes committee had agreed with RT but rule amendments as a result of the appeal were included later.

c.      League Controller – RT reported that there were 4 main issues this season;- 1.Could Nathaniel Paul play for Newport Juniors as well as Coddon in the same division. RT said no to this although he did relax the rules slightly in allowing a senior to play in the junior team whilst still allowing them to play at home. 2. DP v GV although a similar situation occurred in IW v Graham Shepherd but was sorted out amicably. It concerned the stopping of the clocks when a player is in his last two minutes and claiming his opponent is not playing for a win other than on time. In his decision RT had referred to Appendix D of the FIDE rules (see below). As GV could win and as DP didn’t supply a completed scoresheet he found in favour of GV. DP subsequently appealed to the rules and disputes committee but failed. See League Secretary’s report. 3. ID sent letter asking if a player graded 113 could play for 2 teams in the same division. The simple answer being no. The complication being the use as a reserve in a higher team, which is permitted. The Geoff Lee situation had been referred to in the Shropshire Star (his grade is 113) RT therefore assumed ID was therefore referring to him. As he is a member of Shifnal & Telford club RT was very careful to check the situation thoroughly but could find no breach of the rules. ID said he hadn’t asked TN to print the article and simply wanted clarification of the rule. (TN had apparently been at the Shrewsbury club when they were discussing the issue and felt it would make a good article). FH said he had understood higher to mean a higher division as teams in the same division should be competing against each other. There was general discussion about how the rules could be manipulated which was eventually terminated as it would come up again in the rule amendments. 4. Match postponements RT had taken a relaxed approach to requests during the season and if an opposing captain had agreed to a postponement then RT said it was okay. Shrewsbury initially refused to rearrange their game against Telepost because they were about to lose Phil Makepeace but in the end they found a convenient date before he left. Division 1 was won by Shifnal & Telford A who needed to win their last game of the season or the title would have been won by Telepost. To add to the pressure Coddon turned up with Simon Fowler on board one but S&T prevailed to win their first title for 20 years. FH presented the trophy to IW. Division 2 won by Wellington A presented to TN. Division 3 Won by Coddon B presented to JT.

d.      Treasurer. FB reported that clubs had paid their fees on time. The provision for engraving has been reduced and FB asked that the holders ensure that the trophies are engraved up to date as it is a permanent record of the winners. This is considered a legitimate expense of the association and reimbursement of this cost is encouraged. FB proposed that league fees remain the same. FH asked what had happened to the congress income. As a result of some bad years the association decided that the congress was no longer viable. Graham Shepherd resurrected it and Shifnal & Telford had taken it over but the proceeds belong to S&T. MCCU fees reduced due to no U100 team. Surplus for year £219.38. Total reserves £1479.40.

e.      Auditor. GP confirmed he had signed the accounts to confirm they had been audited.

f.        Grading officer NR reported that all results have been sent off. The grading list will be published at the end of July. These grades will reflect the inflation of grades that is proposed.

g.      County individual. NR said that the deadline for playing the games had been reached and Trevor Brotherton is in the lead but with a couple of games that could effect the outcome it is still undecided.

h.      Cox and Minor Trophies. DP reported that neither competition was finished. Telepost B were due to play either S&T C or Shrewsbury in the final of the Cox. There has been a problem in the minor event due to postponements. SR asked if a fresh approach was required in view of the number of defaults. KT suggested a survey of the clubs to see what format the events should take. This was agreed with a report to the council meeting. (to be undertaken by KT or DP?)

i.        Publicity officer. TN reported that regular items had been appearing in the Shropshire Star. Contributions were always welcome as most of the information is picked up from the website. The question was asked if TN should print information concerning an appeal before a ruling had been made by RT (referring to the Geoff Lee situation). TN said his article used information he picks up whilst he is playing in the county as well as by donation from others. TN felt that RT would not be swayed by anything printed in the Shropshire Star. TN was thanked for the good work he does.

j.        Website editor. KT reported that the proposed link from the webcard to enable automatic production of the league tables had proved more difficult than thought. He had introduced a talking points section which was hoped to take the form of a “blog”. Currently the county teams sections are not being updated. Anyone who wants to help please contact KT. 

k.      Congress organiser. CR reported that we held a congress. There were 107 entries. Next years event will be 9-10 January 2010. Grading limits hadn’t yet been confirmed. We made a good profit.

l.        County junior organiser. SR made a written report which he read the main points from and additionally reported that the ECF chess for schools saga was ongoing the aim was to supply all schools in the country with chess sets. JC thanked SR & FB for their help in setting up a chess club in Condover. TN reported that Brian Lindley (who made a major contribution to junior chess in the 80’s) had died recently. His wife has kindly donated his chess books, a number aimed at juniors, to the association to help develop junior chess.

m.    County first team. Peter Kitchen not present.

n.      County under 125 team. RB reported that they had lost narrowly to Warwickshire 9-7 who went on to be MCCU champions, beat Staffordshire 10.5 – 5.5 and lost to Worcestershire 4.5-11.5.

o.      Under 100 team. No team see junior report.

p.      MCCU delegate no one was present at the meeting.

q.      ECF delegate. NR had nothing new to report.

4.      Election of officers. Vacancy for U100 captain. ID said he would run one of the teams as RB was willing to run a team it was decided to wait until grades were published before making a decision. RT had announced he would be resigning at the meeting and VC was proposed as his successor. Richard seemed undecided about his resignation and was also proposed. The vote was 14 – 3 in favour of VC. RT requested that VC take into consideration S&T’s involvement in the Wolverhampton league, which VC noted. RT was thanked for stepping in when no one else would take on the vacancy. RB also volunteered to be an MCCU delegate. Election of officers is as follows:- President, Iain Wilson; secretary, Colin Roberts; league controller, Vincent Crean; treasurer, Francis Best; auditor, Glyn Pugh; grading officer, Nick Rutter; county individual organiser, Nick Rutter;Cox and minor knockout, Derrick Powell; publicity officer, Toby Neal;website editor, Keith Tabner; congress organiser, Colin Roberts; junior organisers, Steve Rooney and Francis Best; county 1st team organiser, Peter Kitchen; under 125 team and under 100 team organisers, Ian Davies and Roger Brown; MCCU delegate, Roger Brown, Richard Thompson; ECF delegate, Nick Rutter.

5.      Proposed amendments to league rules. Rule 5 AC on behalf of S&T’s D team asked what the definition of a higher team was as his team had won promotion and wanted to stay together in the second division but would have lower grades than the C team players in the third division. DP said that next season was a new season and therefore new teams, a general debate on the subject took place. It was agreed that this was an issue for the S&T club meeting and not the AGM.  SR said that this rule was just confirming current practice but making it a formal rule. Rule 5 When registering its players with the league Controller at the start of each season, each club must nominate 4 players to each team other than the club’s lowest. Players nominated to a higher team cannot play for a lower team. Penalties for breaches of the rule are stipulated at rule 27. Voting rule 5 carried. Rule 9 SR explained the rule change, which was to replace lower team with lower division meaning that teams in the same division would be in competition. RB commented that the higher team where two teams were in the same division would be severely hampered. RT asked why can’t b team players play for an a team in the same division. SR said it was to get a clear rule that everyone understood. He advocated a return to Chess for enjoyment. GP agreed with the proposal. KT referred to last season where a B team captain was playing for against his own team. FH suggested that the rule should apply to games between the teams from the same club ie in the A v B team match mentioned nominated B team players couldn’t play for the A team thus avoiding match fixing allegations. CR explained the problem S&T have with players only being available for part of the season. ST commented that 3 players wont be able to play. DP said that people from a lower team should be able to move up as reserves and can’t see what’s wrong with the current system. But suggested that average grade of the nominated players should define higher team. NR said that Newport A & B cannot survive if this rule is brought in. Further general debate. Eventually agreed to put the proposal to a vote. Rule 9 A reserve may be drawn from a team from the same club in a lower division, as follows: a)Players graded below 90 can play up into a team in a higher division without restriction. b) Players graded above 90 can play up into a team in a higher division on two occasions. The reserve becomes a member of the team in the higher division on the third occasion for the remainder of the season. Where a club has two teams in the higher division the reserve can only play for one team in that division. Where a reserve wins by default the result will count as an appearance for the senior team. c)Penalties for breaches of rule 9 are stipulated at rule 24. Vote 13 – 13 chairman after deliberation voted against. It was decided that the grades referred to in rule 9 would be reviewed once the new grades were available. Rule 12 was replacing the current 5+ or – rule. Rule 12 Players must be arranged in order of playing strength according to the latest E.C.F. grading list; except that players on adjacent boards whose grading differs by no more than 10 points shall be regarded as interchangeable for the purposes of this rule. Penalties for breaches of this rule are specified at rule 25. Passed. Deletion of Rule 14. Now there is a smoking ban in all venues this rule is no longer relevant. It does not mean that you can now smoke at the table.  Rule 14 Smoking will be banned both at the board and in the immediate playing area. Each club must define its ‘playing area’ and home team captains must inform visiting teams of its boundaries. Passed. Rules 18&19 have been added as a result of DP situation. Debate surrounded rule 19 which RT was against. FH agreed with RT (probably for the first time) CR said that the proposed rule gave the option of using senior players as observers and only if agreement could not be reached should they use appendix D. RT proposed that for simplicity we should adopt Appendix D. Quickplay finishes where no arbiter is present in the venue. Where games are played as in Article 10, a player may claim a draw when he has less than two minutes left on his clock and before his flag falls. This concludes the game.He may claim on the basis a. that his opponent cannot win by normal means, and/or b. that his opponent has been making no effort to win by normal means. In (a) the player must write down the final position and his opponent verify it. In (b) the player must write down the final position and submit an up-to-date scoresheet, which must be completed before play has ceased. The opponent shall verify both the scoresheet and the final position. The claim shall be referred to an arbiter whose decision shall be the final one. Vote passed 16 – 7.

6.      Proposed amendments to constitution. None.

7.      Any other business TN said that Vikas Sharma a new member to Wellington Chess club is hoping to play in some tournaments. He is here for six months and if anyone is entering any congresses he would be grateful for a lift. Details are on the website. IW mentioned the S&T rapidplay would be taking place during the summer first one next week. IW was thanked for managing to get through what was a detailed AGM.

Meeting closed at 10:40