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SAE - Eagle House Saturday, January 27
Jim Wadsworth writes:

Click for larger photo
Click for larger photo

Eagle House School was the scene for some particularly competitive Saturday Afternoon chess, with the destinations of both trophies resolved only after 5 minute blitz playoffs.

The under 500 grade prize was won by Lucas Banber from our host school, with Andrew Poile as runner up. Both finished on a very creditable 4 points out of 6, just half a point ahead of James Vonchek who narrowly missed out on joining them in the playoff only as a consequence of his final round draw - James was in a strong position in that game, but his more experienced opponent was able to escape through creating a three-fold repetition situation.

Up until the final round, it looked as though Philip Archer-Lock was going to take home his second SAE trophy of the year. However in the last game he was beaten by Matthew Wadsworth in a well-controlled endgame. Meanwhile in the other top games in the final round Ben Vandersluis defeated Robert Starley, and (in what was perhaps the result of the day) "home team" player George Wilks overcame top seed Daniel Noel. This led to a 4-way tie between Philip, Matthew, Ben and George, all finishing on 5 points from 6. In the first round of blitz playoffs, Ben beat Matthew and Philip beat George. A substantial, and (save one unexpected rumbling stomach, impressively quiet) crowd watched the decider between Philip and Ben. In what was a very even game, Ben had about 30 seconds left on his clock when Philip's flag fell, and as a result won his first SAE of the 2006/7 season.

As ever, many thanks to our excellent hosts, Eagle House, and to all the participants in what was a very enjoyable afternoon's chess. And of course many congratulations to event winners Ben Vandersluis and Lucas Banber.

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Results
Eagle House
Last Season's Results