This was the first of three consecutive championships that were held in Greystones. In a field of 20 players, Sam Collins, playing in his second championship, made a strong start and was sole leader after three rounds, but he then drew against defending champion Mark Heidenfeld and lost to Stephen Brady. Brady in turn was clear leader after round 5, but suffered a nightmare as White against Heidenfeld in round 6. Heidenfeld was clear leader after 7 rounds but could only draw his last two games, whereas Brady and Collins finished with consecutive wins. So Stephen Brady won his third championship, and his first for nine years.
There were many interesting games. One that caught the eye was the last-round games between Brendan Lyons (white) and Stephen Scannell.
Play continued 22… Nc6 (only move) 23. Qd1 (23. Qd3! was better, when White is winning) 23… Be4 (23… Nd4!? leads to complications where Black doesn’t have too much the worse of it) 24. Bd6 Bd4+?? 25. Qxd4+! 1-0.
It’s all immensely complicated but it seems Black was fully in the game right to the end. A sample line from the engines is 24… Qb7 25. Rb1 Qg7 26. Rxb2 Qxb2 27. Bd5 Bxd5 28. Qxd5 Qc1+ 29. Kf2 Qxc2+ 30. Kg3 Qc3+ 31. Kg4 h5+ 32. Kg5 Kg7 33. Bf8+ Kxf8 34. Qxc6 Qe5+ 35. Kxg6 Qxh2, when White’s advantage has dissipated.