Munster Championship

The format for the Munster Championship began as a match between the winners of the North Munster Championship and the Plunkett Trophy (Championship of Cork). The precise date of the first such match has not been identified, but cannot be any earlier that the first North Munster Championship in 1926. Sometime in the 1950s a separate South Munster Championship was established to provide the qualifier from the southern half of the province.

The first North Munster winner of the title was Robert O’Dea of Limerick who beat Barry St John Galvin of Cork in 1938.

It is unclear exactly how long the play-off match format continued but in a report on the 1990 Championship, played in a tournament format, the venue was stated to alternate between Cork, Limerick and Waterford.

Two local sources have assisted greatly in identifying or confirming the winners of the Championship:

  • Maurice Coveney (then Munster secretary) list 1956-1969 (source: Cork Examiner, 18 June 1969)
  • Pat Twomey list 1989-2014 (source: Ennis Chess Club website)

1938 Robert O’Dea

Final (27 May, Limerick): Robert O’Dea (Limerick) beat B.St.John Galvin (Cork) in the final game.

1940 Barry St John Galvin

1947 John C. Hickey & Cornelius O’Leary

1950 Cornelius O’Leary

Final (at Cork CYMS): C. O’Leary (Cork CYMS) beat V. Condon (Kilfinane)

1951 Noel Mulcahy

Finalists: C. O’Leary (holder), V. Condon (North Munster champion), E.N. Mulcahy (Plunkett Trophy winner)

1952 Noel Mulcahy

Final: E.N. Mulcahy (UCC) 2.0-0.0 V. Condon (Kilfinane)

1953 John Reid

Final (Adare): John Reid (L’Avenir) (Plunkett Trophy winner) 2.0-0.0 P.McGrath (North Munster champion) (Kilfinane)

1955 Cornelius O’Leary & Val Condon

Final (Kilfinane): C. O’Leary 2.0-2.0 V. Condon (Match drawn and title shared)

1956 John Reid

Final (October, Churchtown): John Reid (Adare) (North Munster champion) 1.5-0.5 Cornelius O’Leary (South Munster champion) (Cork CYMS). Reid’s previous win had been as the South Munster champion, but he had moved north to Adare shortly after that success.

1957 Noel Mulcahy

Final: Won by E.N. Mulcahy who defeated J. Reid by 2.0 to 0.0 in a short match. Mulcahy also won this title at his last attempt.

1958 John Reid

Won by J. Reid (Adare) who defeated by C. O’Leary (Cork CYMS) 2.0 to 0.0 in the final at Cork. [Reid regained the Cup which he had now won 3 times]

1959 John Reid

J. Reid (North Munster champion) beat C. O’Leary (selected to play for South Munster; match had been delayed because the 1959 South Munster Championship had not been held)

1960 John Reid

Final (Cork): J. Reid (Adare) beat E.N. Mulcahy (UCC) 2.0-0.0

1961 Noel Mulcahy

Final (Cork): E.N. Mulcahy beat T. White 2.0-0.0

1962 John Reid

1. J. Reid
2.D. Heelan

1963 John Reid

1. J. Reid
2. D. Heelan

1964 John Reid

1. J. Reid
2. E. O’Reilly

1965 Liam Brady & Desmond McAleenan

Final (Limerick): Liam Brady (01) 1.0-1.0 Desmond McAleenan (10)
(The players then agreed to share the title)

1966 Tom White

Final (O’Doherty’s Hotel, Kilfinane): T. White (Limerick) 2.0-0.0 D. O’Grady (Bellevue)


Final: C. Duggan vs C. O’Leary (winner unknown)


Final: C. Duggan vs M. Kennefick (winner unknown)


Finalists: P. Hayes, T. White, W. Ireton, M. Kennefick (winner unknown)
(Rules changed to make it two 2 qualifiers each from North and South Munster)

1989 Philip Short

Munster Championship
Windsor Hotel, MacCurtain Street, Cork
7-9 April

1. Philip Short 5.5/6
2. Paul Carey 5.0
3=5. Frank Noonan, Declan O’Leary, Liam O’Brien 4.5
(40 players)

1990 John Kennedy

Royal George Hotel, Limerick

1=3. John Kennedy (champion on tie-break), John O’Donoghue, Pat McMahon 5.0/6
4=6. Paul Kiely, Paul Carey, John Cassidy
7=10. Paddy Quinlan, Niall McDonnell, Chris Dixon, Finbarr Allison
(41 competitors)

1991 Philip Short

1992 Kieran Moynihan

Munster Championship
Royal George Hotel Limerick
3-5 April

1. Kieran Moynihan 5.5/6
2. Pat McMahon 5.0
3=4. Frank Noonan, Bernd Thee 4.5

1993 Philip Short

Cork Bridge Club

1. Philip Short 5.5/6
2. Bill Donaghue 5.0
3. Berndt Thee 4.5

1994 Mel O’Cinneide

Arus Phadraig Centre Killarney
22-24 April

1995 Frank Noonan

1996 Liam O’Brien

1997 Paul Walsh

Grand Hotel Tralee
18-20 April

1. Paul Walsh 5.0/6
2=4. Liam O’Brien, John Cassidy, Brian Hayden 4.5
4=7. Paul Carey, Werner Krause, Vincent O’Donnell, David O’Kelly 4.0
(32 players)

1998 John Aherne

Hosted by Cork City CC
8-10 May

1=2. John Aherne, Bernd Thee 5.0/6
(Aherne won title on tie-break)
3=4. John Cassidy, Paul Walsh 4.0

1999 Paul Kiely

2000 Paul Walsh

1. Paul Walsh 5.0
2. Frank Noonan 4.5
3=6. James Mc Keon, David J. Smith, John Cassidy, Pat Twomey 4.0
7=13. Paul Kiely, Pat Mc Mahon, Christy McInerney, Rory Quinn, Sean Nolan, Brian Farragher, Anne Coughlan 3.0
14=17. Paddy Quinlan, Paul O’Donovan, Maurice Coveney, Jack French 2.5
18. Jack McGrath 2.0
19. Walter Fitzgibbon 1.0

2001 Liam O’Brien

Clonmel Arms Hotel, County Tipperary
5-7 October

1. Liam O’Brien 5.0
2=4. P.J. Rea, Paul Walsh, Paul Kiely 4.5
5=7. Martin O’ Grady, Frank Noonan, Kieran O’ Driscoll 4.0
8=12. Ian Sutton, James Mc Keon, Sean Nolan, John Alfred, David Smith 3.5
13=16. David Path, Christy McInerney, Paddy Quinlan, Fred Flynn 3.0
17=18. Emily Alfred, David Kiely 2.5
19=23. Paul O’ Donovan, Jamie Flynn, Michael Collins, Shirley Flynn, Pat Prenderville 2.0
24. Jack McGrath 1.5
25. Paul Flynn 1.0

2002 Kieran O’Driscoll

Limerick Ryan Hotel
27-29 September

1=4. Jose Delgado, Kieran O’Driscoll, Paul Walsh, David J. Smith 4.5/6
(The title of Munster Senior champion went to Kieran O’Driscoll on tie-break)
5=9. Liam O’Brien, David Path, Frank Noonan, Paul Kiely, Liam Collins 3.5
10=12. Niall McDonnell, John Alfred, James P. Mc Keon 3.0
13=14. Christy Mc Inerney, Pat Twomey 2.5
15. Tom Cooper 2.0
16. David Kiely 1.5
17. Phillip Foenander 1.0
18. David Cusack 0.5

2003 Paul Walsh

Limerick Ryan Hotel
26-28 September

1. Paul Walsh 5.5
2=9. Frank Noonan, James P. McKeon, David Path, Paul Kiely, Liam O’Brien, Kieran O’Driscoll, Stephen Short, Dave Smith 4.5
10=13. Nick Larter, John Donoghue, Jamie Flynn, Anne B. Coughlan 4.0
14=23. Dara Murphy, David Kiely, Pat Twomey, Christy Mc Inerney, Michael Burniston, Donagh Mc Carthy, Catherine Danaher, Oisin Benson, Steven Hanly, Sean McCarrick 3.5
24=32. Emily Alfred, Kevin O’Flaherty, Paul O’Flaherty, James Vaughan, Pat McCarrick, Eoghan Danaher, Gerry Casey, Brian Scully, Deirdre M. Gleeson 3.0
33=42. Dmitry Mishin, Brian Farragher, Sam Osborne, Liam Normoyle, Philip Foenander, Shirley Flynn, Shane Felle, Jan Mueller, Christopher Young, Eimear Danaher 2.5
43=46. Joy Burniston, Anthony Kiely, Mark Brennan, Patrick O’Mahoney 2.0
47=51. Michael Normoyle, Kieran Young, Claire McCarrick, Morian Todorov, Olivia Fitzmaurice 1.5
52=53. Eanna S. Ryan, David Hallinan 1.0
54. Richard Flynn 0.0

2004 Frank Noonan

24-26 September

1. Martin Kaster (Germany and therefore presumably ineligible for Munster title) 5.5
2. Frank Noonan 5.0
3=4. Martin O’Grady, John Alfred 4.5
5=8. Paul Kiely, Pat Hayes, Tom O’Sullivan, Janis Karklins 4.0
9=14. Jamie Flynn, Stephen Short, Paul Walsh, Johannes Krumm, Nick Larter, Dara T. Murphy 3.5
15=26. Liam Normoyle, John Donoghue, Gabriel Mirza, Gerry Casey, Shane Felle, Eanna S. Ryan, Paddy Quinlan, Kevin O’ Flaherty, John Perrott, Jan Mueller, Andrew Carroll, David Kiely 3.0
27=29. John Knightson, James Vaughan, Michael Normoyle 2.5
30=32. Emily Alfred, Stephen J. Roughan, Patrick O’Mahoney 2.0
33=36. Anne B. Coughlan, Anthony J. Kiely, Richard Flynn, Deirdre M. Gleeson 1.5
37=38. Oisin Murphy, Mark Brennan 1.0

2005 David Path


1=2. David Path, Paul Walsh 5.0
3. Stephen Short 4.5
4=9. Liam Normoyle, Asta Liobikiene, P.J. Rea, Paul C. Kiely, Frank Noonan, David J. Smith 4.0
10=11. David Normoyle, Michael Burniston 3.5
12=16. David Kiely, Christy McInerney, Jack McGrath, Eamon Lambden, Gearoid Veale 3.0
17. Paul Carey 2.5
18=23. Paddy Quinlan, Thomas Carr, Anne B. Coughlan, Michael Normoyle, Aysra Leikute, Jonathan Kiely 2.0
24=25. Ivor Gordon, David O’Mahony 1.5
26. Patrick O’ Mahoney 0.5

2006 Frank Noonan

2007 Rory Quinn

2008 Rory Quinn

Tramore Chess Festival incorporated the Munster Championship. The winner, Karl McPhillips, was ineligible and Rory Quinn was the highest placed eligible player.

2009 No championship held

2010 Rory Quinn

16-18 April 2010
Auburn Lodge Hotel, Ennis

1. Rory Quinn 6.0
2. Paul Walsh 4.5
3. Frank Noonan 4.0
4=9. Liam O’Brien, Gerry Casey, Gabriel Mirza, Michael O’Donnell, Phillip Foenander, John Cassidy 3.5
10=12. Orison Carlisle, Christy McInerney, Kieran O’Brien 3.0
13=14. Sven Haas, Christopher Young 2.5
15=19. Alfreda Misius, Ray O’Brien, Anne B. Coughlan, Richard Flynn, John McKenna 2.0
20. Billy McKenna 1.5
21. David Moreno 0.0

2011 No championship held

2012 Alex Lopez

Mulcahy Memorial incorporated the Munster Championship.

2013 Alex Lopez

Mulcahy Memorial incorporated the Munster Championship.

2014 Michael de Verdier

Mulcahy Memorial incorporated the Munster Championship.

2015 Paul Walsh

West County Hotel, Ennis
18-20 September

1. Paul Walsh 4.5/5
Rory Quinn 4.0
FM Philip Short, Orison Carlile 3.5
5=6. Paul Kiely, Eric James Salsac 3.0
7=9. John Cassidy, Pat Twomey, Martin O’Grady 2.5
10=16. Jacob Miller, Michael O’Donnell, Maurice Buckley, Ray O’Brien, Gerry Casey, Shane Sheedy, John Knightson 2.0
17. Denis O’Connell 1.5
18. Paul Dowdall 1.0

2016 Paul Walsh

West Country Hotel, Ennis
16-18 September

1. Paul Walsh 4.0/5
2=5. Philip Short, Rory Quinn, Piotr Leichert, D. Gerry McCarthy 3.5
6. Eric James Salsac 3.0
7=10. Kevin James, Bogdan Neaga, Kieran O’Brien, Pat Twomey 2.5
11=14. Martin O’Grady, Nick J. Larter, Phillip Foenander, Ted Jennings 2.0
15. Ray O’Brien 1.5
16. Gerry Casey 0.5

2017 Rory Quinn

West County Hotel, Ennis
22-24 September

1. Rory Quinn 4.5/5
2=3. Nick J. Larter, Paul C. Kiely 3.5
4=5. D. Gerry McCarthy, James Naughton 3.0
6=8. Kevin A. Burke, Gerry Casey, Phillip Foenander 2.5
9=10. Pat Twomey, Ray O’Brien 2.0
11=12. Henk De Jonge, Con Kirby 1.5
13. Dylan Murphy 0.5

2 responses to “Munster Championship

  1. Pingback: Munster competitions | Irish Chess History

  2. Pingback: The return of the Munster Championship | Irish Chess History

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