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New Annual Chess Tournament for Cork

Chess Tournament 1

Pictured at the announcement of Cork City Council's sponsorship of The Finbarr Allison Memorial Chess Tournament were Finbarr's son Cormac who played an exhibition game against the Lord Mayor Cllr. Donal Counihan, Finbarr's daughter Niamh, his wife Katherine, his mother and father, Gus and Margaret, and sister Maura with City Manager, Joe Gavin.

At an event in the Lord Mayor’s Chambers, City Hall, Cork, on Thursday  24th January at 4.00 p.m., Cork City Council announced details of the sponsorship of an annual rapid-play chess tournament to be held in Cork in May of each year, beginning in 2008. The competition, which will be a one-day event, will augment the established and well supported Cork Chess Congress which is held in March of each year.

It is hoped that this event will attract interest from Northern Ireland and Great Britain and encourage sports tourism to the region. The organisers have decided to name the competition The Finbarr Allison Memorial Chess Tournament in honour of Finbarr Allison, an avid chess player who was well known and respected in local government and chess circles who died suddenly and unexpectedly in January of 2007.

As a further mark of respect the Cork Chess Association has also decided to rename the Masters’ competition, held in March each year as part of the Cork Chess Congress, The Finbarr Allison Memorial Trophy.

Chess Tournament

Lord Mayor Cllr. Donal Counihan with members of the Cork Chess Association, Finbarr's family and Cork City Council colleague, Andy Lyons.

Speaking at the launch, Tadhg O’Leary, spokesperson for the Cork Chess Association said:

“We are grateful to the Council for their support of this initiative and the prospect it holds out of encouraging those who would not otherwise attend the March congress to participate in this event. We are very confident that this sponsorship will assist greatly in putting Cork to the forefront in one of Ireland’s fastest growing indoor sports".

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