Under 14 Team event: Berks, Sussex, Kent, Barnet
Sunday, September 16
Keith Tunstall writes:
On what might be the last day of summer this year, four county teams got together at The Dolphin School, Hurst to kick off the U14 county chess season.
There was a hasty relocation within the school since the main hall was not available because it was hosting an orchestra practice! With a quick re-shuffle and very little fuss, everything was set for some tough games of chess.
The first round draw pitted Barnet against Berkshire and Kent against Sussex. After a couple of quick wins for Sussex there was a huge wait for the next result - 50 minutes into the match! With a couple of defaults, the first real Berkshire match didn't finish for 55 minutes and that was a draw by perpetual check on board 1. A fantastic example of focused chess playing and exactly what was asked for.
Although Berkshire lead 4½-½ after an hour, Barnet fought back well. The score stood at 6-4 to Berkshire with two games left. Ben and Adrian took the points and Berkshire won the round 8-4.
In the other half of the match, the results were going mostly for Sussex. Although a late surge from Kent brought the first round result to 9-3 in favour of Sussex. The last game taking 2 hours and 16 minutes - nearly the whole of the alloted time.
Both matches in the first round had incredible average game
Even with these average game lengths, the good weather allowed plenty of cricket playing out on the tennis courts. It's a pity England didn't benefit in their match against South Africa!
The two final matches saw each team needing the same colour sequence as their opposition. So a toss of a coin decided colours for the final round and off we went.
The intensity of the first round was certainly in the playing
room, although the average game lengths dwindled a little:
After the initial default, Barnet came back strongly against Kent with the score 4-2 to Barnet at the half way stage. Kent never recovered the ground and Barnet ran out 8½-3½ winners of the playoff for third and fourth place.
Meanwhile in the playoff for first and second place, Berkshire took an early 3-1 lead after half an hour of playing time. At the midway stage Sussex had pulled the match back to a 1 point gap - 3½-2½ to Berkshire. The final half of the match was dominated by the Berkshire team who took 5½ of the 6 points available to clinch a fantastic victory over Sussex, 9-3.
Everyone in the Berkshire team contributed points with 7 players
finishing unbeaten on the day, of which five of these were part
of the 100% club:
A great start to the season, with the NYCA U18 and U14 competitions just around the corner. Well done everyone.
Last Season's Results