Sunday 26 November 2017

Project 30: Rapidplay Results

The first round of the Project 30's Rapidplay Match Championship concluded today. Four players battled it out over two 20-minute games - and one pairing required two sets of tie-breakers at a much faster time limit.

All is ready

Julian Allinson 1-1 Dave Edmunds
5-minute tie-break games: 1-1 
Second 5-minute tie-break games: 2-0

A very exciting match, in which Julian twice had to win with White to extend the contest when he had fallen under the pressure caused by losing with Black. He eventually took the match initiative by winning a key endgame position as Black and then ensured his passage to the semi-finals with a powerful performance as White in the sixth game.
Dave Edmunds
Tense tie-break games
Julian with his trademark bananaa

Sean Marsh 2-0 David Baillie

David Baillie

Having survived positional pressure in the first game, David looked set to turn the tables completely but went astray in a very messy endgame. The second game saw David accept a slightly compromised pawn structure in return for the bishop pair, but the bishops didn't find enough activity in time and he was left worse as the endgame developed.

The draw for the semi-finals has been made.

John Garnett vs. Sean Marsh

Julian Allinson vs. Matthew Jackman

The ties will feature four Rapidplay games, with additional 5-minute tie-breakers if required.

The semi-finals must be concluded by the end of February 2018.

Thursday 23 November 2017

CSC Training Day Tour: Manchester

The third date of this year's CSC training day tour took me to Manchester yesterday for a very interesting and stimulating day of chess.

The tour has already visited London and Edinburgh, both of which proved popular with the delegates, and this time we had 14 people in attendance, with an excellent blend of teachers, TAs and established chess players.

I was very pleased to be able to work alongside David Hardy, Manchester's own Regional Organiser, who is one of the hardest-working people I have ever known.

As usual, we crammed as much as were possible could into the day and the group was eager to discuss and debate many topics which all made for an excellent day.

Utilising Ashton's San Rocco was a masterstroke, giving everyone great facilities, plenty of space, lots of coffee and a very impressive lunch.

We conclude with a selection of captured moments from our busy day.

Thank you, everyone!
Mini-gamaes are still fun!

This time lunch brought more than sandwiches
Written work for the delegates

Tough challenges
Please keep an eye on this page if you are interested in attending a CSC Training Day.

Tuesday 21 November 2017

Project 30: Two New Events

Time to announce two more aspects of Project 30.

So far we have started an Individual KO Championship and a Rapidplay Match Championship, both which have started well and will continue to run throughout the chess season.

We have also had a very impressive simultaneous display by WFM Sarah Hegarty at Ings Farm Primary School, in which the brilliant England International and former British Champion played - and defeated - 20 juniors all at the same time.

There are at least two more simultaneous displays by titled players in the pipeline for 2018.

Meanwhile, we can now announce two more brand new events.

New Event 1

An Outstanding Student trophy award for the person from each one of our CSC Teesside curriculum schools has most impressed the CSC tutors and teachers over the course of the school year 2017-8.

New Event 2

A problem solving tournament, open to all players at our CSC Teesside curriculum schools.

Full details will be circulated to the relevant schools in the near future.

Stay tuned for more Project 30 announcements...

Tuesday 14 November 2017

2017 HMC Championships

Our Yarm chess teams were in action once again at the 2017 HMC Championships at QEGS. 

We had one team in the Under-9 section (Seth Holland, Aryan Nalawade, Aditya Paul and Frankie Parker) and two in the Under-11s (Yusuf Syed, Ajay Selvan, Henry Parker and Oliver Cochrane in the A team; Oscar Thomas, Sai Sidaginamale, Eleanor Lamb and Grace Crawford in the B team) and we were hoping to repeat our success from last year, when we became the Under-11 champions.

All three teams started in excellent fashion with 4-0 victories. However, this made the second round more difficult for all concerned, which saw our three teams pitched against tough opponents from RGS and QEGS. The Under-11 teams lost heavily but the Under-9s battled their way to a very fine 2-2 draw with RGS B.

The Under-9s continued to play very well and scored another three big wins from their last four matches, losing only to RGS A along the way. They beat both QEGS A and QEGS B by terrific scores of 3-1.

Captain Seth and Frankie ended up scoring a very creditable 3/6 each. Aryan won four games and drew one but Aditya was the team's top scorer with a superb 5/6.

The team held a very fine third place, just behind RGS A and RGS B. If our Under-9s keep on improving as they have been doing then they will make a formidable Under-11 team at next year's HMC event.

Yarm A vs. Yarm B
Meanwhile, our Under-11 teams met each other in the third round and the B team made life difficult for the A team for a while, before the latter team eventually emerged as winners, to the tune of 3-1. The A team then won two of their last three matches, but couldn't prevent defeat against a very strong RGS B in the penultimate round. Nevertheless, a smashing 4-0 victory over Ackworth in the final round saw them finish well and register a good fourth place, just one point behind QEGS A and one and a half points behind RGS B. Very close indeed!

Captain Yusuf, Henry and Oliver all scored 4/6 and Ajay, the only Year 5 player in the team, scored 3/6.

The B team continued to battle hard, winning one, drawing one and losing one of their the last three rounds. Captain Oscar won two games from six, Eleanor and Grace both scored 3/6 and Sai was the team's top scorer with four and a half out of six. The B team finished just two and a half points behind the A team, which was a great achievement.

We all had a great day and I'm sure all of our players gained a lot of very valuable experience, especially when they found themselves up against stronger opposition.

Congratulations to the champions - RGS - and thank you to QEGS for proving themselves to be perfect hosts yet again.

Friday 10 November 2017

Project 30: Sarah's Simul

Last month I announced a new event for Project 30, with the exciting news that WFM Sarah Hegarty would be coming to Teesside for a simultaneous display at one of our schools.

Today saw the plan come to fruition, when Sarah very kindly gave up a lot of her very valuable time to travel all the way from Cheshire to Redcar's Ings Farm Primary School.

Ings Farm were one of the very first schools to sign up to the CSC back in 2010.

In a simultaneous display, the star player is up against a large group of players and has to move instantly upon reaching each board. This should dilute the chess strength of the star, thus giving the group more chances.

20 of Ings Farm's most experienced assembled inside a square of tables, ready to test their strength against an experienced England International and former British Champion.

The children were very excited to have the opportunity to play against a genuine chess V.I.P. and some of the games were reasonably close for a while. However, every time Sarah finished off another game the circuits became faster and the children had to think and move more quickly. 

Sarah then wrapped up the remaining games with a flurry of fine checkmates, giving her a fabulous score of 20 wins from 20 games.

Charlie Peirson lasted the longest and Sarah also singled out Lola Thomas as having played the best game of the day. 
At one point Lola had engineered a clever skewer against Sarah's queen and rook, but that hadn't stopped Sarah whipping up a devastating checkmate attack some moves later.

It was a very memorable and enjoyable day.

Many thanks to Ings Farm Primary School, who allowed me to hijack the entire morning KS2 timetable and thank you to the children for portraying our school and area in a  very positive light.

Most thanks must go to Sarah, of course, who gave up her day to visit Teesside and will undoubtedly prove to be a perfect role model and fine inspiration to our juniors for many years to come.

Stay tuned for more exciting announcements form Project 30, including more simultaneous displays.

Thursday 9 November 2017

UKCC - New Website

Tournament Directors Sarah and Alex Longson have just unveiled  a new website for the Delancey UK Schools' Chess Challenge and it can be found here.

All schools are encouraged to enter the 2018 competition. This can be done online, by clicking here.

From the site:

'Enter before December 15th to avoid late entry fee.

Held during school in chess club. Suitable for all levels - all players win badges, mascots, certificate and more successful players will win a mini-book and the winner will win a trophy.

The top boy and girl in each age group qualify for the Megafinal, as well as anyone getting 17 points.'

There is some excellent teaching material available on the site, which be accessed here.

The new website also features a blog, which is already building up a significant number of posts. The blog can be found here.

Sunday 5 November 2017

'Chess' Returns

'Chess' (the musical), written by Tim Rice, Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeusis, is all set to return to London for its first major revival in 30 years.

Further details can be found here.

Saturday 4 November 2017

Chess Reunion

The chess crew from last year's London Chess Classic expedition reunited at Pizza Express last night, partly to reminisce about the great London experience and partly to present Lily and Farrell with their certificates and software from the Brian Kerr Girls' Award.

Thank you, everyone; it was a great evening!