NZCF logo

122nd New Zealand Congress

Official website with information and regulations

Pairings & Results - see the Vega files at NZ Open
National Chess Centre logo


• Open to all chess players, any nationality
• Winners crowned New Zealand Champions
• $10,000 in prizes


Organised by the New Zealand National Chess Centre
Devonport St Paul’s, 100b Victoria Road, Devonport, Auckland


New Zealand Open Championships
1st–9th January 2015

New Zealand Rapid Championships
Weekend of 10th–11th January 2015

New Zealand Lightning Championships
Sunday 11th January 2015


New Zealand possesses arguably the best established National Chess Championship in the world, dating back to 1879. For this 122nd New Zealand Chess Congress, the charming seaside village of Devonport will play host for the first time. Located directly across the harbour from the Auckland CBD, Devonport is renowned for scenic locations, superb beaches and delightful cafes. The tournament venue will be the new National Chess Centre at Devonport St Paul’s.


Tournament website:
Download the entry form here (pdf document)
Venue information:


The 2015 New Zealand Championship is an Open tournament - giving a unique opportunity for up-and-coming players to take on the elite of New Zealand chess, and visiting overseas players.




Open to all players of any strength. All games start 1.30pm. One game per day. Time control: 90 minutes for first 40 moves, followed by 30 minutes for the rest of the game, with the addition of 30 seconds per move starting from move one.
ROUND 1 – Thursday 1st January
ROUND 2 – Friday 2nd January
ROUND 3 – Saturday 3rd January
ROUND 4 – Sunday 4th January
ROUND 5 – Monday 5th January
ROUND 6 – Tuesday 6th January
ROUND 7 – Wednesday 7th January
ROUND 8 – Thursday 8th January
ROUND 9 – Friday 9th January (followed by Banquet from 6pm and Prize-giving, details below)

BUFFET BANQUET - 6pm-9pm at Number One Bistro, 1 Victoria Rd, Devonport.
This 3-course buffet for Congress participants is kindly subsidised by former NZ International Grant Kerr.
Tickets only $20; places MUST be reserved no later than Tuesday 6th January at the tournament bookstall.
Price $20 for Congress participants and their accompanying persons.

PRIZE GIVING - from 8pm onwards at Number One Bistro, 1 Victoria Rd, Devonport.
Anyone may attend - drinks on sale at the bar.
Please note that the Poison Pawn Grand Prix prizes will also be presented here.


ENTRY FEE $220 (plus late fee $50 if entering after 20/12/2014).
PRIZEFUND: 1st $2000, 2nd $1500, 3rd $1000, 4th $500, 5th $450, 6th $400, 7th $300.
Grading Prizes: best under 2100 $600, best under 2000 $500, best under 1900 $400, best under 1800, $350.
Chess Book Grading Prizes: best under 1700, 1600, 1500.
Plus a $20 Corelli's Cafe voucher awarded daily, for meritorious performance the previous round.
Tournament winner will be crowned 2015 New Zealand Open Champion.
Top New Zealand player will be crowned 2015 New Zealand Champion, and will have name engraved on Silver Rook trophy.
Top NZ player under 2100 will be 2015 Major Open Champion.
Top Juniors (any nationality): trophy and official NZ JUNIOR OPEN CHAMPION title for Under 18, Under 16, Under 14, Under 12, Under 10, Under 8.
Top Woman (any nationality): trophy and official NZ WOMEN'S OPEN CHAMPION title.
Top Senior (any nationality): trophy and official NZ SENIOR OPEN CHAMPION title.
(Senior: any player born in or before 1965)
Note: tie-breaks will apply to all NZ OPEN titles/trophies.

Late Entry Fee:
Entries to the Open Championship after 20/12/2014 (if accepted) will be surcharged $50.




A 9 round swiss-system tournament. Time control 25 minutes plus 5 seconds increment per move from move one.
Saturday 10th January: Player’s meeting 9.30am.
Round 1 10am,
Round 2 11.15am,
Lunch break 12.30pm,
Round 3 1.30pm,
Round 4 2.45pm,
Round 5 4pm.
Sunday 11th January:
Round 6 10am,
Round 7 11.15am,
Lunch break 12.30pm,
Round 8 1.30pm,
Round 9 2.45pm.


PRIZEFUND: 1st $400, 2nd $300, 3rd $200.
Grading Prizes: best under 2100 $100, best under 2000 $100, best under 1900 $100.
Chess Book Grading Prizes: best under 1800, 1700, 1600.
Tournament winner will be crowned 2015 New Zealand Open Rapid Champion.
Top New Zealand player will be crowned 2015 New Zealand Rapid Champion.

The Rapid Championship may be entered any time before 9am on Saturday 10th January, the day of play. There are no late fees.




A 9 round swiss-system tournament. Time control 3 minutes plus 2 seconds increment per move from move one.
Sunday 11th January: Player meeting: 4.30pm. All rounds will start as soon as possible. Expected finish time 7.30 pm.


PRIZEFUND: 1st $300, 2nd $200, 3rd $100.
Grading prizes: best under 2100 $75, best under 2000 $75, best under 1900 $50.
Chess Book Grading Prizes: best under 1800, 1700, 1600.
Tournament winner will be crowned 2015 New Zealand Open Lightning Champion.
Top New Zealand player will be crowned 2015 New Zealand Lightning Champion.

The Lightning Championships may be entered any time before 3.30pm Sunday 11th January, the day of play. There are no late fees.


TO ENTER A TOURNAMENT: pay the entry fee by bank transfer, and e-mail with the following information:
ENTRY FEE PAYMENT: make a NZ $220 bank transfer to ASB 12-3198-0066163-01, account in the name of Devonport St Paul's Ltd. Or pay with Credit Card via the secure Australian Chess Enterprises site on - go to "Events" and follow the "Buy" instructions to pay A $200.

No entry will be considered accepted until payment is received. All entries will be confirmed by e-mail, and will also be listed online.


Note: participants who are eligible for NZ titles and prizes are required to be paid-up 2014 members of the NZ Chess Federation (this event is the last in the 2014 registration year). An entrant who is not a member may register onsite (cost $20). Foreign players who are not also New Zealand citizens or residents are not required to pay this fee.


FIDE Registration:
NZCF will submit the New Zealand Open Championship to FIDE (the World Chess Federation) for rating. All New Zealand entrants will be automatically registered. Overseas entrants are required to be FIDE registered via their own national Federations, and to provide their FIDE ID when entering.




A player may appeal against the decision of an arbiter. An Appeal Committee will be formed, chaired by an arbiter not involved in the dispute, with two other members selected from participants in the tournament. An appeals fee of $60 will apply, to be refunded if the appeal is successful.


No player may win more than one cash prize per tournament. Cash prizes will shared (no tie-breaks). Prizes won by overseas players may be subject to a New Zealand withholding tax. Overseas visitors who win a prize may elect instead to take the payment as a part reimbursement of travel expenses, subject to the provision of expense receipts.


Closing Ceremony: prizewinners must attend the closing ceremony, or prizes may be forfeited.


The grades used to determine grading prize eligibility are, in order: NZCF ratings, FIDE ratings and national ratings of other countries. The applicable rating list in each case will be the most recently published. Unrated players with past tournament experience are requested to give an indication of playing strength and may be assigned a grade at the discretion of the arbiters.


No Short Draws on top 10 boards (prize money penalty):
To encourage a positive image of chess, draws in under 30 moves (or pre-arranged draws of any length) are penalised on the top 10 boards in each round.
Penalty for first breach - loss of 50% of any prize money.
Second breach - loss of 100% of any prize money.
Draws by genuine repetition are allowed.


available online during the tournament. See NZ Open; NZ Rapid; NZ Lightning.


Default Time:
The default time for the Championship (for players arriving late for a game) shall be 1 hour.


These will be applied (where required) as follows:
1. Direct Encounter
2. Cumulative (Sum of progressive scores)
3. Buchholz Total
4. Sonneborn-Berger
5. Buchholz Cut 1
All are calculated according to Vega's system. These are used in descending order until all remaining ties are broken. If there are still ties after application of 5th tie break, ties would be decided by lot.


Accommodation options:
Much of the holiday accommodation in Devonport is boutique bed & breakfast, and the cheaper holiday apartments are often booked out well in advance. Nevertheless there are good local accommodation options not well advertised, and the NZ Championship organisers may be able to advise you, if you are having difficulty finding the right place.

Feel free to e-mail us on with your exact dates and accommodation requirements, and we will do our best to assist.

Websites with lists of Devonport/Auckland Central Accommodation:

It is also practical to stay in the Auckland CBD (preferably nearby the downtown ferry terminal) and commute by ferry each day to Devonport. Ferries run every half hour during the day, and the ferry trip (CBD to Devonport) takes 10 minutes. The tournament hall is then a pleasant 10-15 minute walk up the main street of Devonport. For those with a car, staying to the north in nearby Takapuna is also an option.


Further information:
this website will be kept updated with links to entries and other information.


Organiser and NZCF contact information:
Murray Chandler (National Chess Centre),
Helen Milligan (NZCF),
Paul Spiller (NZCF),

  Poison Pawn logo

| Home | Calendar | Results | Resources | Links | Clubs | Contact us | 2015 Poison Pawn Grand Prix |