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Congratulations to Ioana Miller who, last weekend, won the Irish Women's Championship for the third year in succession. She defeated her main rival, teenage star Trisha Kanyamarala, in their crucial round three meeting.

New ICU committee elected

The Irish Chess Union annual general meeting, and the 2019 Irish Rapid and Blitz Championships all took place on Sunday 29 September in Dublin. John McMorrow stood down as ICU chairperson after three very successful years but accepted the office of Treasurer which he had also been undertaking in the past year. Many other members of the 2018/19 committee also remain on the team of officers.

The new ICU chairperson is Desmond Beatty, formerly the Junior Officer, who ran the highly successful Glorney Gilbert international junior tournaments in July. For the full list of new officers see the ICU website.

The Irish Rapid Championship (played at the rate of 10 minutes plus 5 second increments) was won by Tarun Kanyamarala (born 2004) on tiebreak from Jonathan Pein (England), whom he defeated in the final round. The Blitz Championship was won by Stephen Moran with 9/11; he also tied third with IM Sam Collins in the Rapid. Runner-up in the Blitz, half a point behind, was Killian Delaney, with Jonathan Pein third.

In the October 2019 FIDE rating list, Trisha Kanyamarala (born 2005, younger sister of Tarun) is equal 100th in the Under-18 Girls list and her rating is now close to 2200. She could already claim the WFM title but perhaps won't bother as she already has two norms towards the Women's International Master title. Her brother Tarun since qualified as a FIDE Master after his rating passed 2300. Since returning to Ireland earlier this year the siblings have been playing just about every available event and have become a great asset for Irish chess. Moreover, their mother has just been elected the new Junior Officer on the ICU committee.

Congratulations also to the new Irish Champion, FM Conor Murphy, who tied first at the 18th Memorial Kesarovski-Stanchev "A" Tournament, at Sunny Beach in Bulgaria, earning his second IM norm. His live rating also passes 2400 so he needs just one more norm.

In August's Irish Championship, Conor won a tense last-round game to finish well clear of the field with 7.5 points from 9 games, winning five games in succession at the end. In crucial games in rounds 7 and 8 he defeated both the defending champion, IM Alex Astaneh Lopez, and former champion IM Sam Collins for a well deserved victory.

Conor thus earned a guaranteed place on Ireland's 2020 Olympiad team and will have increased his rating but an early loss meant he did not meet sufficient titled opponents for an IM norm in that competition.

The annual Glorney Gilbert junior team tournaments were held at a hotel on the Irish border near Dundalk in late July, with six countries competing. In a round-robin tournament played alongside, Irish teenager Trisha Kanyamarala scored 5/9 for her second norm towards the WIM title. The event was won by young Icelander Vignir Vatnar Stefansson, who scored 7/9 and earned an IM norm.

Some Irish websites:

Irish Chess Union website.
The main place to go all for all information about Irish chess.
Irish Correspondence Chess Association
Information about international correspondence events for Irish players. (Page just updated!)
Irish chess forum discussions
On (independent of the Irish Chess Union).
Bunratty Chess Festival
Popular annual Irish chess weekender held each February.
Irish chess history and news site
Irish chess history group coordinated by Sean Coffey.

Leinster Chess Union
(Includes information on the Armstrong Cup and other leagues in the province)
History of Dublin University Chess Club
Article by Dr. Tim Harding
In 2014 the club won Ireland's top chess league (and the world's third oldest), the Armstrong Cup, for the sixth time!

Irish cricket captain and chess player
George Frith Barry, a star of Victorian sport

Further Irish chess links and information may be added later.

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