Lincolnshire Chess Association

Minor Counties Competition (2022-23)

MCCU Minor Counties Championship
Position Teams Pl W D L Pts
1 Lincolnshire 2 2 0 0 4
2 Worcestershire 1 0 0 1 0
3 Warwickshire 1 0 0 1 0

MCCU Minor Counties Championship Match Results
Date Match Result
3 Dec Warwickshire v Lincolnshire 5½-10½
21 Jan Lincolnshire v Worcestershire 10-6

ECF Minor Counties Championship Match Results
Date Match Result
13 May Lincolnshire v Somerset 16-0
10 Jun Lincolnshire v Norfolk 6-10

Warwickshire v Lincolnshire

Report from Nigel Birtwistle

After an enforced absence of almost three years due to the pandemic Lincolnshire finally returned to playing county chess again when they met Warwickshire at Syston. The personnel of the team had changed quite a bit with several players having retired from competitive play since our last match. But we were able to welcome three recruits into the team. Eric Gibbon from Stamford and our most promising junior Alex Royle were making their Lincolnshire debuts. The other recruit was not so new. Martin Pettinger formerly of Grimsby Chess Club and a three-time Lincolnshire Champion returned to play for the county of his birth. Martin has only recently started playing chess again after a thirty-year absence and travelled over from Chesterfield to take his place in the team.

Lincolnshire got off to a flying start with a quick win from Sam Milson and raced in to an early four-point lead at the halfway stage. Warwickshire did manage to pull a couple of points back, but the result was never really in doubt and Lincolnshire ran out convincing winners by a 10½ - 5½ margin. The fighting team spirit and will to win of old was once again in evidence and it was great to see the county team back in action once more. Hopefully we can use this result as a springboard and continue to rebuild the team into the force that we were before. Our next match is against Worcestershire at Syston on Saturday 21st January.

Date: 3/12/22
Venue: Syston
Warwickshire (Home team) Lincolnshire (Away team)
Board Colour Name Club Grade Score Name Club Grade
1 B Shabir Okhai Sutton Coldfield 2296 ½-½ Nigel Birtwistle Grantham 2244
2 Henrik Stepanyan Sutton Coldfield 2265 ½-½ Steven Prior Grantham 2218
3 B Russell James Solihull 2137 0-1 Jason Dilley Grantham 2212
4 W Jude Shearsby Kenilworth 2077 0-1 Samuel Milson Louth 2196
5 B Mircea Mesesan Warwickshire 2010 0-1 Nick Stead Grimsby 2154
6 W Mark Cundy Olton 1946 0-1 David Coates Lincoln 2001
7 B Tony Hickey Oscott 1918 0-1 Kevin McCarthy Grantham 1982
8 W Golam Ali Sutton Coldfield 1924 1-0 Eric Gibbon Lincolnshire 1949
9 B John Mildenhall Suton Coldfield 1898 ½-½ Graham Ladds Newark 1923
10 W Keith Escott Sutton Coldfield 1897 ½-½ Francis Bowers Grantham 1897
11 B Gary Hope Olton 1853 ½-½ Stuart MacDonald Grimsby 1874
12 W Richard Reynolds Olton 1861 0-1 Martin Pettinger Lincolnshire 1872
13 B Roy Lawrence Sutton Coldfield 1799 1-0 Andy Hebert Grantham 1862
14 W Keith Thomas Oscott 1779 ½-½ Denis Georgiou Scunthorpe 1827
15 B Arjun Pyda Sutton Coldfield 1754 ½-½ Ben Mason Grantham 1784
16 W Mike Biddle Oscott 1728 0-1 Alex Royle Grantham 1721

Lincolnshire v Worcestershire

Report from Nigel Birtwistle

Lincolnshire played their second and final match of the MCCU season against Worcestershire at Syston. After having convincingly won our first fixture against Warwickshire before Christmas we knew that a win in this match would be enough to qualify for the national stages of the Minor Counties competition. Preparation in the run up to the match had not been great. On Friday evening we were three players short of a full team. Fortunately, Rod Wardlaw, Alan Nelder and Allan Marshall stepped in at the last minute to dig us out of a large hole and maintain the proud Lincolnshire record of having never defaulted a board during almost fourteen years of my tenure as captain.

Having successfully plugged the gaps and suffered no further setbacks we finally managed to get sixteen players sat at the board. On paper it looked like being a close match. At one stage the match was delicately poised at 4½ - 4½ but a strong final session saw us crank up the pressure on our opponents and in the end, we ran out comfortable winners by a 10-6 margin.

I am fortunate to have a dedicated group of players again this season. We have lost a few players for various reasons since the pandemic, but we have also recruited some new faces into our team as well. Despite the changes in personnel the core factors behind the team’s success have never changed. A great team spirit and determination to win still runs deep in our team and hopefully it will help us when we come up against more difficult opposition when the National knockout stages of the Minor Counties competition get underway in early May.

Date: 21/1/23
Venue: Syston
Lincolnshire (Home team) Worcestershire (Away team)
Board Colour Name Club Grade Score Name Club Grade
1 W Nigel Birtwistle Grantham 2246 1-0 John Edge Halesowen 2085
2 B Steven Prior Grantham 2219 ½-½ Lee Davis Malvern 2083
3 W Samuel Milson Louth 2196 1-0 Dan Lambourne Redditch 2072
4 B Nick Stead Grimsby 2147 1-0 Stephen Mellor Worcester 2059
5 W Joe Kilshaw Scunthorpe 2032 1-0 Joe Friar Kidderminster 2045
6 B David Coates Lincoln 2022 0-1 Kevin Hurney Greenlands 2028
7 W Graham Ladds Newark 1930 0-1 Peter Kitson Worcester 2026
8 B Martin Pettinger Lincolnshire 1900 1-0 Brian Turner Malvern 1977
9 W Eric Gibbon Lincolnshire 1899 1-0 John Wrench Kidderminster 1948
10 B Stuart MacDonald Grimsby 1897 0-1 Harry Evans Redditch 1894
11 W Keith Palmer Louth 1829 ½-½ Stephen Woodhouse Greenlands 1891
12 B Chris Hill Grantham 1795 1-0 Gavin Cartwright Longbridge 1889
13 W Chris Holt Grantham 1786 ½-½ Nigel Towers Redditch 1821
14 B Rod Wardlaw Scunthorpe 1785 ½-½ Paul Sharratt Stourbridge 1757
15 W Alan Nelder Grantham 1618 0-1 Tony Shaw Worcester 1759
16 B Allan Marshall Boston 1578 1-0 Eric Horwill Stourbridge 1700

Lincolnshire v Norfolk

Date: 10/6/23
Venue: Peterborough
Lincolnshire (Home team) Norfolk (Away team)
Board Colour Name Club Grade Score Name Club Grade
1 W Stephen Prior Grantham 2229 ½-½ Michael Harris Broadland 2312
2 B Nigel Birtwistle Grantham 2197 ½-½ Martin Walker Norwich Dons 2193
3 W Paul Cumbers Grantham 2193 0-1 Gerald Moore Broadland 2150
4 B Jason Dilley Lincolnshire 2166 1-0 Ken McEwan Broadland 2124
5 W Nick Stead Grimsby 2136 0-1 Geoffrey Moore Norwich Dons 2103
6 B Joe Kilshaw Scunthorpe 2060 ½-½ Philip Bonafont Norwich Dons 2097
7 W David Coates Lincoln 2047 ½-½ Vivash Samarakoon Norfolk & Norwich 2093
8 B Kevin McCarthy Grantham 1999 ½-½ Roy Hughes Broadland 2049
9 W Martin Pettinger Lincolnshire 1965 0-1 Alexander New Norwich Dons 2013
10 B Raymond Ilett Lincolnshire 1943 0-1 Steve Pullinger Broadland 2003
11 W Alex Royle Grantham 1919 1-0 Nathan Abbott St Johns Norwich 1972
12 B Francis Bowers Grantham 1916 0-1 Andrew Slough Aylsham 1944
13 W Graham Ladds Newark 1901 0-1 David Hall Norwich Dons 1911
14 B Eric Gibbon Lincolnshire 1853 1-0 Mervyn Hughes Norwich Dons 1871
15 W Stuart MacDonald Grimsby 1850 0-1 Samuel Gaffney Norfolk 1868
16 B Andrew Hebert Grantham 1848 ½-½ Steve Moore Norwich Dons 1841