The City of Dublin is an event that, while formerly a major draw, has struggled a bit in recent years. But this year’s version had an excellent turnout: 160+ over four sections, well up on last year. The turnout of 20 in the top section was also well up on the last few years.
Juri Firstov continued his excellent run of recent form by finishing clear first on 4½/5. In the October FIDE list his rating is 2305, so presumably he now qualifies as an FM? Very well deserved! Surely he must be an excellent candidate for IM norm invitationals in Ireland now, as a titled player who helps add to the non-IRL-registered player requirements?
Second was top seed Sam Collins, who featured in three of the toughest battles of the event, versus Firstov, Valentine Kalinins, and Colm Daly. His miraculous save against Kalinins, captured on video by Colm Daly, was one of the highlights of the event. The critical moment is captured below.
The organisers are to be congratulated in making all 45 games from the Masters available. They’ve all been compiled into a full tournament report, now posted on the tournament pages.