Chess News Welsh Correspondence Chess Federation

Rydym yn Ffrindiau - Amici Sumus
States and Regions Clearing House
ICCF IDTitleNatName2020/4FC
160318CCEFRAAlmarza Mato, Carlos21122102
810278 WLSRhys Jones22802298
810189 WLSAlex Bullen21182196
810293 WLSGareth Jones21352157


LC0: Technical Set Up

A quick tip here. If you use these engines consider the following:

  • Make sure you have the latest GeForce drivers and GeForce Experience utility. Within  this is a performance tuning tool. When used this has generated reporting performance increases from 10-20% Nodes per second.



  • The second are more important tip is to ensure that you set the RAMLimitmb,. If not set, then LCZero can however up all your available RAM and slow the system down (and it will be using much more than the amount it shows you on the taskmaster!). What should it be set to? Experimentation will be the key here. They key below shown in default install in Aquarium is set to 1000mb (1 Gb) as a starting point. From here I would increase upwards to the point the system started to slow down.



#Engine #Lczero

Premium: Project E

A posting for Premium/International members has been made - Log-in to view

WCCF Norm Invitationals

Following up on the invitation to qualified Welsh players we have had a great response with 17 players so far indicating an interest....

Balshaw, Claridge, Sherwood(3) , Jones I, Bishop, Jones R, Scott, Builen, Jones G, Wakeham, Bailey, Coles, Hurn, Flex, Robinson.

If you are not on the list and think you should be or would like to be added to the list please get in touch ASAP  . 

Much work to do buy currently looking at Cat 11,8,5,H and E events. As a reminder these are only open to Welsh flagged premium members


IM Norm for Nick Bishop

Congratulations to Nick Bishop for picking up an IM Norm in III TORNEO PABLO ATARS IM 2020 GRUPO 4D

Below is a nice win against the Bird from that event.

#ImNorm #NickBishop

States and Regions Clearing House

Are you a player looking for a team or a team looking for a player?  Either way get in touch with Russell Sherwood 

WCCF Announces the Third States and Regions Correspondence Chess Championship

The States and Regions Correspondence Chess Championship is a biennial team event organised by the Welsh Correspondence Chess Federation (WCCF) and open to representative teams from any country of the world. The tournament is started in the first quarter of alternate (odd) years.

Teams must represent a subdivision of a country; this could be a state, county, province, territory, etc. Eligibility to play for each team is determined by the team captain, however the WCCF Executive Committee retain the right to reject any individual or team entry. Multiple teams (for example “A” and “B” teams) may be entered from the same state or region.

Following the success of the second (2019) edition, the third (2021) edition will start on 17th January 2021, entries are now being accepted.


Teams will consist of four players; each player will play one game against each of the other players on the same board.

There will be one or more divisions, each division will consist of thirteen to fifteen teams. Allocation to the first division will be:

  • The first six placed teams from Division One, Season Two
  • The first two placed teams from Division Two, Season Two (Promoted)
  • Any vacancies will be filled strictly by rating order

The winning team of Division One will be declared the S&RCCC Champion, the winning team and first runner up of the lower divisions will be promoted to the next division.

New teams will normally enter at the lowest division except by agreement of the WCCF Executive Committee. Teams including fewer than three players from the previous season will be considered as new teams.


All relevant ICCF rules and procedures for international team events current at the start of the tournament will apply.  Team captains are strongly encouraged to arrange boards by rating order and WCCF reserve the right to enforce rating order to correct a detrimental effect on norm availability.  The same player may not represent more than one team in the event or occupy more than one board for the same team.

As the S&RCCC is an ICCF approved tournament, title norms may be available depending on the rating level of each board.

Time Control

The Triple Block time control of 50 days initial time, 50 days bank, and 5 days added for each of the first fifty moves will be used with Guaranteed Time applying after Move 50. There will be no adjudications except in the case of withdrawal.


The States and Regions Correspondence Chess Championship had been approved by ICCF as an Open tournament; international teams may enter by contacting the organisers directly.

The entry fee for each team is £20.00 GBP, however this is discounted to £15.00 where the team captain is a Premium or International member of WCCF; all entries should be sent to the WCCF Secretary ( Payment can be made by PayPal (via the WCCF website or directly to, please state the name of your team), direct bank transfer, or by cheque.

Entries will close on 3rd January 2021; games will commence shortly afterwards.

There are no prizes, however certificates will be awarded to members of the winning team of each division, and free entry will be offered to the winning team of the first division for the following season.

Previous Winners

Season One (2017)

Season one was played using the Hutton Pairing format

Season Two (2019)

From season two, the tournament moved to a more conventional all play all format


Rydym yn Ffrindiau - Amici Sumus


Austin Lockwood, WCCF Secretary


GUI & Engine Survey

Dear Players,

Can you please complete this survey 

This will be used to determine the priority for video content creation!

Note: LC0 and Fat Fritz added!


The Skunkworks

As time goes on and as your rating increases Victories and rating increases become harder to achieve as the opportunities and margin for victory become fewer.

Over the last year I have worked and continue to work on a number of these kinds of projects and following some introspection have decided to open up some to others. Included in the list are:

Engine Experience

Many years ago there was a CAP project that sort to build a fully analysed engine tree. In more recent times the Cerebellum project has sought a similar, if more advanced outcome as the tree would be optimized. The issue with these approaches is that the outcome Is static as far as the user goes.  Another approach is to build a tree , where the analysis is used as an input to new analysis rather than an end result and if better, deeper analysis occurs for the same position it becomes the new standard.  So far work on this has reached a little over 7million analysed positions.

Dragon Opening Books

An issue with modern CC is that many players used the same small source of opening books and databases, which reduces the amount of diversity in moves played.  I have been working on developing a number of books and continue to work on others.  The first of these – “White Dragon” will be released to WCCF Premium/International members soon.


I got tired of searching, so created a number of my own which will be available to WCCF Premium/International members.

SHEAR Chess Engine

Whenever I go through a review of engines it becomes obvious the different engines have different useful features – so the aim is to bring them all together in one engine – a Swiss army knife or sorts. SHEAR is this engine. Of course, some of my own ideas are also being added on top of this!

Analysis Techniques

As part of a long-time project I have started recording a number of videos on Engine Analysis techniques

Lesser known Software and Functions

There are plenty of lesser known functions of chess software and indeed lesser known chess Software. Some of these are “game changers” for your specific approach. Again some videos are planned to explain some of these!


With the new NNEU enhancement to Chess engines it makes it relatively simple for anyone to develop their own analysis network. A first run on this developed a network as strong as the standard stockfish ones of the time. Now with lessons many lessons learned it will soon be time for another run for a network developed for CC!

This is just a taster of what is happening in the background – more details will be released in coming weeks but as a general rule if people want to be involved, they need to contribute to those projects and of course the more people who get involved the faster projects move!

#Engines #PlayerDevelopment #Skunkworks

CCE Norm for Robert Hurn

Congratulations to Bob Hurn on picking up his first CCE Norm in Brian Jones Celebration


#Bobhurn #CceNorm

CCE Norm for Alex Bullen

with a solid performance in Carlos Flores Gutiérrez Team Tournament SF4 Board 4 

Alex has secured his first CCE Norm against field typically 200+ elo higher rated!

#AlexBullen #CceNorm

WCCF Invitational Events 2021

I draw attention to the mail now being sent to all Welsh flagged players. If you want to be considered for insolvent for these events please respond ASAP.

Please note the requirements in the mailing.



Article Index

It always surprises me how many articles and documents I have published.

Below is an Index of articles published on this site with links, group loosely under a number of headings with links

Analysis Infinite Variety12
Analysis A Peek behind the Curtain!11
Book ReviewThe Chess Player's Alice154
Book ReviewBlast from the Past151
Book ReviewBook Review: Chess for Life134
Book ReviewChess for Life - Matthew Sadler & Natasha Regan132
Book ReviewBook Review: The Chess Toolbox125
Book ReviewBetter Thinking, Better Chess: How a Grandmaster Finds his Moves - GM Joel Benjamin123
Book ReviewCorrespondence Chess in Britain and Ireland, 1824-1987 - SIM Tim Harding122
Book Reviewe3 Poison : A 21st Century Opening Repotiore95
Book ReviewApplying Logic in Chess - Erick Kislik91
Book ReviewChess Structures87
Book ReviewWorld Champion at the Third Attempt82
Book ReviewMy 120 Selected Correspondence Games by SIM Mike Read81
Book ReviewBook Review Scoring System79
Book ReviewI was elected to Lead, not to read!78
Book ReviewChess on the Fringe43
CongressCongress Photos105
CongressICCF Congress Report - Day 3102
CongressICCF Congress Report - Day 2101
CongressICCF Congress Report - Day 1100
CongressICCF Congress Report - Day 0!99
CongressBlast from the Past10
DatabasesCovering all the (Data) bases!21
Engine DevelopmentA Correspondence Engine39
EnginesGoldilocks and the Hash Table170
EnginesStockfish: Make the best choice!169
EnginesSetting up Stockfish NNEU in Fritz/Chessbase168
EnginesReturn to the Engine Room167
EnginesNeural Nets on the cheap164
EnginesNew Directions143
EnginesDrinking you under the Tablebases137
EnginesChanging Horizons131
EnginesEngine Analysis Research Group130
EnginesStockfish 10 Contempt127
EnginesBack in the Engine Room121
EnginesKeep an Eye110
EnginesFive a Day98
EnginesFinal Gen97
EnginesCutting Edge93
EnginesUnder the Table(bases)92
EnginesTurning the Table(base)s88
EnginesZero to Hero?75
EnginesMaking a HASH of it!74
EnginesChoosing a Chess Engine68
EnginesAs easy as XY but not Z66
EnginesIn contempt58
EnginesThe Specialist31
EnginesSpot the Difference!30
EnginesMore Miles to the Gallon?17
EnginesLost in the Endgame15
EnginesLifting the Hood13
EnginesOptimising your Engine Set Up for Newbies5
Engines50 Shades of Stockfish1
General InterestInteresting Annotated Games163
General InterestGerman Bundeslegia157
General InterestDoes Size Matter?152
General InterestRule Clarification141
General InterestOld School139
General InterestSomething for nothing 2?136
General InterestSomething for nothing?135
General InterestChess Songs - The Answers129
General InterestChess Songs128
General InterestNew Title Tournaments120
General InterestAGM Resource114
General InterestWCCF Template113
General InterestSlayers109
General InterestWCCF Hall of Fame108
General Interestand now for something completely different.....86
General InterestBragging Rights69
General InterestWho's been doing what, with who?65
General InterestHold the Front Page59
General InterestBack to the Future50
General InterestRating Blues49
General InterestSize Matters?40
General InterestAlpha Go a GoGo36
General InterestKasparov in Wales!23
General InterestSimple Guide to Annotation18
General InterestAdvice for Rookie Team Captains4
ICCF TitllesThe Golden Snitch51
InterviewsInterview with IM Andrzej Szerlak (POL)166
InterviewsInterview: CCM Glyn Sinnett (WLS)161
InterviewsInterview: SIM Gareth Yeo159
InterviewsInterview: SIM John Rhodes (ENG)158
InterviewsInterview: CCM Dennis M Doren (USA)156
InterviewsInterview: LGM Dawn Williamson (ENG)153
InterviewsInterview: LGM Toni Halliwell (ENG)149
InterviewsRussell Sherwood, Player Interview90
InterviewsSIM Joop Jansen (NED)89
InterviewsGM Matjaž Pirš84
InterviewsSIM Gino Figlio (PER)77
InterviewsSIM Ivan Panitevsky (RUS)73
InterviewsMarc Wakeham (WLS)72
InterviewsCraig Evans (WLS)70
InterviewsGordon Anderson (SCO)67
InterviewsPhillip J. Beckett (ENG)64
InterviewsIan Jones (WLS)60
OpeningsEvans Gambit155
OpeningsBe careful out there!29
Player DevelopmentRating Differences165
Player DevelopmentAB & NN - a perfect match?160
Player DevelopmentGaslighting147
Player DevelopmentCopycat144
Player DevelopmentSome light reading140
Player DevelopmentConditional Weapon138
Player DevelopmentGoals, Goals and Goals133
Player DevelopmentPick your battlefield! IM Norms126
Player DevelopmentAll that glitters.......117
Player DevelopmentTime Machine115
Player DevelopmentMilestones103
Player DevelopmentNew Season: A New Hope?94
Player DevelopmentMoving on up!85
Player DevelopmentPoka Yoke76
Player DevelopmentYou have been weighed, you have been measured and you have absolutely found wanting!61
Player DevelopmentThe Blueprint57
Player DevelopmentThe Curse of Zero56
Player DevelopmentThe New Normal55
Player DevelopmentIn the War-room54
Player DevelopmentHow to train your Dragon!53
Player DevelopmentDo not go gentle into that Good Night. Rage Rage against the Dying of the Light.48
Player DevelopmentTri-Bi Thinking47
Player DevelopmentTo Draw or not to Draw?46
Player DevelopmentWhat’s your UWP?45
Player DevelopmentLean Chess44
Player DevelopmentPushing the Limit!42
Player DevelopmentIndustrial Chess41
Player DevelopmentDead Man's Attack38
Player DevelopmentHorses for Courses37
Player DevelopmentWhere there’s a way there’s a will!35
Player DevelopmentHumanity's last Stand?34
Player DevelopmentThe Time Machine33
Player DevelopmentThe Universal Soldier?32
Player DevelopmentThe Great Escape28
Player DevelopmentSeason Planning27
Player DevelopmentNo Bragging please, We're British!26
Player DevelopmentForm is Temporary, Class in Permanent.25
Player DevelopmentIntelligence Reports24
Player DevelopmentStop! You’re doing it wrong!22
Player DevelopmentStanding on the Shoulders of Giants20
Player DevelopmentJumping through Hoops!19
Player DevelopmentCan you have too much of a good thing?!16
Player DevelopmentGetting those Title Norms you know you deserve!?14
Player DevelopmentIt's all just a matter of time!9
Player DevelopmentWhat's in a Norm?8
Player DevelopmentSo you want to be a Correspondence Chess Expert?7
Player DevelopmentResources for Modern Correspondence Chess3
Player DevelopmentSize does matter (When it comes to Elo!)2
PostalPostal Glory96
PostalGoing Postal!62
Rating ListsWelsh Provisional 2020/3 Rating List162
Rating ListsProvisional Rating List142
Rating Lists2019/1 Rating List Review119
Rating ListsProvisional Welsh 2018/4 Rating List104
Rating ListsAnother door closes!83
Resource FolderResource Folder Updated148
Resource FolderResource Folder146
SICALMSICALM - December124
Social MediaWCCF Mailing List150
Social MediaFollow WCCF on Twitter145
Social MediaBeing Sociable80
Social MediaWCCF Facebook Page6
Video LinkHow I became an ICCF GM172
Video LinkWCCF AGM Technical session recording171
WebsitesRead All About it!52
WelshbaseWelshbase update118
WelshbaseWelshbase Update116
WelshbaseWelshbase October Update112


2021 Membership Renewals Are Now Open

Premium and International WCCF membership is now open for 2021.

The easiest way to subscribe is directly though this website; click "Log On" and then "My Membership" and follow the link to PayPal.

Premium membership gives you discounted entry to most WCCF and ICCF tournaments, exclusive website content, and preferential selection for international teams and events for premium members.

The cost of premium membership is still only £5.00 and £10.00 for international membership.

Please see here for full details of our membership structure.


CCE Norm for Nick Flew

Congratulations to Nick Flew for picking up his first CCM Norm in Carlos Flores Gutiérrez Team Tournament SF4 Board 3

#CceNorm #NickFlew

Tournament Starts

Good Luck to.....


Gareth YeoCZE Invitationals20/Lomnice15Cat 10
Mark AdamsWS/MN/B/27 Cat 3
Nick Bishop50 Years Open CXEB Semifinal 4 Cat 3
 50 Years Open CXEB Semifinal 6Cat 3
Russell Sherwood50 Years Open CXEB Semifinal 12Cat 3
Alex BullenWS/CCE/B/10Cat F
Paul ScottMemorial Yuri Yaroshenko B (UKR)Cat 2


If you have started an event in the last month not listed let me know.



How I became an ICCF GM

It would be nice to writing this about myself but this is about 71140  GM Leitão, Rafael (2592)

Came across the following on Youtube

It's in Portuguese but subtitles and Auto-translate can be turned on via the setting Icon at the bottom of the screen 


AGM Minutes

The minutes of the 2020 WCCF Annual General Meeting, held online on Saturday 19th September, are attached to this post.  Please note that these minutes should be considered as draft until approved by the 2021 AGM

New Friendly Matches

Good Luck to our teams in 

Wales - Norway 2020

Wales - Philippines 2020



CCE Norm for Rhys Jones

With two rapid-fire victories Rhys has picked up his first CCE norm in III TORNEO PABLO ATARS IM 2020 GRUPO 7A

With games in hand a short CCM Norm and full CCE Norms both appear possible in this event


WCCF AGM Technical session recording

The recording of the AGM Technical session, covering a number topics, including Engine Set Up and Playing like Rallabandi has been uploaded to the WCCF Youtube Channel.

The recording is only available to WCCF Premium or International members. Should you want access please get in touch.

More videos will be released in the future, both as open and member only content

Ukraine v Rest of World Friendly Match

Ukraine are arranging a friendly match vs the Rest of the World. We have been asked to nominate 1 player and a reserve. Following discussion, we are looking to nominate players outside the team taking part in the Euro Team Championship Semi-Finals.

If you are interested in taking part please get in touch.

Wales - England Friendly

The Wales - England U1800 friendly match is over with a narrow victory for Wales

WLS v ENG 2020 , Wales v England under 1800

Congratulations to all players involved!

Our other friendly with England WLS V ENG 960, Wales v England Chess 960 Friendly is progressing nicely for our team!



World Zone vs Zone 1 Friendly match

Good Luck to all the Welsh players involved (12) in this 428 board match!

Goldilocks and the Hash Table

Following on from selecting the "best" version of an engine to use we now move onto setting the Hash table.

The Hash table is a storage location the engine uses to store position evaluations. If it sees the same position come up again it looks it up in the Hash table.

In theory, as long as looking up the position is faster than evaluating it again, the engine will search more efficiently. This means setting the Hash table to the "right" size can have a significant impact on both the efficiency and effectiveness of the engine search. 

If the table is too small then, it will fill up quickly and all positions will have to be calculated every time met, slowing down the search.

If the table is too large then it will be slower to search for the position that it is to recalculate it from scratch.

So how to we get the Goldilocks zone? It is a combination of:

  1. The Processor speed
  2. The available RAM
  3. The number of Cores being used to analyse
  4. The time being spent analysing each move

Processor Speed and Available RAM can be determined from the Windows system settings or via utilities such as CPU-Z. In general the amount of RAM being allocated to Hash should be no more than 50% the Total RAM of the system. Going above this level tends to slow down the PC in general

The number of Cores (not threads) you set for the engine - if you are using the PC mainly for analysis this will normally be the maximum, less one being used for the Windows system.

The time being spent on each move is a function of your analysis methods.  Rather than go through the formula, a small spreadsheet is attached which will estimate the setting to use.  



#EngineSettings #Hash #Stockfish

Please note that is not responsible for any content linked to from external websites.

Terms and Conditions | Privacy Policy | Copyright © 2002 - 2020 | Westhoughton | Bolton | England