Equal first in an Irish championship, but never Irish champion

The answer to Thursday’s trivia question, what do

William Edward Thrift
P.J. McMahon
W.J. Allen
Oscar Aidan Quigley
William Richard Dunphy
Alex Montwill
Matt O’Leary
Tom Clarke

have in common, is as in the title: all finished equal first in an Irish championship, but for one reason or another didn’t win or share the title that year, and never won or shared it any other year either. The reasons why the tie wasn’t enough varied from losing on tie-break to losing a playoff match to forfeiting when a playoff match schedule couldn’t be agreed.

The full details can be tracked down on the ICU web site with a bit of work, but are much more conveniently presented all on one page on the Irish championship page on David McAlister’s Irish Chess History web site.

1925 8-player all-play-all, Dublin, J. J. O’Hanlon and W. E. (William Edward) Thrift =1st on 5½/7. “It was intended to have a play-off match but “Thrift being unable to continue the play” the ICU awarded the championship to O’Hanlon.”

1926 8-player all-play-all, Belfast, J. J. O’Hanlon, W. J. Allen, and P. J. McMahon =1st on 5/7. O’Hanlon won the double-round playoff tournament convincingly on 3½/4.

1937 9-player all-play-all, Dublin, Thomas Cox and O. A. (Oscar Aidan) Quigley =1st on 6½/8. Cox won the playoff match 3-2.

1957, 8-round 20-player Swiss, Galway, D. J. O’Sullivan and W. R. (William Richard) Dunphy =1st on 6/7. O’Sullivan won on tie-break.

1962, 8-round 16-player Swiss, Derry, John B. Reid, Michael Littleton, Alex Montwill and Brian Reilly =1st on 5½/8. Reid and Littleton were declared joint champions on tie-break. (Reilly was champion in 1959 and 1960.)

1972, 9-round 20-player Swiss, Dublin, Wolfgang Heidenfeld and Matt O’Leary =1st on 7/9. Heidenfeld won the playoff match 2½-1½.

1996, 9-round 25-player Swiss, Dublin, Richard O’Donovan, Tom Clarke and Colm Daly =1st on 6½/9. O’Donovan won on tie-break. (Daly was champion in 1998, 1999, 2005, and 2009.)

[13 Dec 2011, correction added: in 1962 the joint winners scored 5½/8, not /7.]

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2 Responses to Equal first in an Irish championship, but never Irish champion

  1. Pingback: Irish championship 2012, and an update to the equal-first-in-an-Irish-championship-but-never-Irish-champion list | IRLchess

  2. Pingback: Alex Montwill | IRLchess

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