Under 16 Team event: Berks, Bucks, Surrey, Sussex
Sunday, December 07
Chris Archer-Lock writes:
The Berkshire Under 16 team enjoyed a testing afternoon at Wilson's School, Croydon, in a four county event alongside Buckinghamshire, Sussex and victorious hosts Surrey. In spite of a fixture clash with the 4NCL, which resulted in opportunities for players well below the age limit in this fixture, a competitive afternoon ensued. In contrast to low prevailing temperatures, the Surrey team soon showed that they were in red hot form, as the first round went mostly to seeding, where Surrey outgraded Berkshire by around thirty points per board. Thus good experience was attained against strong opposition, as became very clear when one of the Surrey lower boards produced a fiendish trap in the rare Reti opening early on, although in the end Berkshire mustered a lowish total of 1½, with a draw from Adrian Archer-Lock on board 1 and a fine rook endgame win from Robert Starley in a close battle on board 5.
The second round saw Berkshire face local rivals Buckinghamshire, who had narrowly been edged out by Sussex in their first round. This was a closer contest, and Berkshire could easily have recorded more than the good quality wins from Daniel Noel, Philip Archer-Lock and Alex Manton-Jones.
Thank you to the players and parents for making the journey to support this fixture, which represented good county chess experience.
Last Season's Results