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ECF Secondary School Rapidplay Chess Tournament

Sunday 14th September 2014, Eton College, Berks …

Eton College hosted the third annual Secondary School Rapidplay Chess Tournament in their magnificent school hall. 227 players made up 38 teams representing 29 schools from fourteen counties, from Lincolnshire to Somerset, Warwickshire to Kent. Over 500 games rapidplay games were played across the five rounds.

Schools featured include past winners Haberdashers’ Askes and Hampton Schools, National Schools Champions Reading School and past national champions Millfield School. Along with some very strong teams, there were many others of a range of strengths seeking to do their best. Whilst the top players were graded over 200, the median grade was closer to 100.

Play went remarkably smoothly with any issues being quickly resolved by arbiters Chris and Matthew Howell. The draw for each round and scores were clear for all to see on an enormous screen at the end of the hall.

The scoring system was based on games points (so every game counted towards the total) rather than match points. This proved popular with the weaker teams who found that their scores were increasing even when they were losing matches. Also the Swiss system lead to many close matches – half the results being 4–2 or closer, even though the first round matches were all more one sided than this.

The average team grading implied that it should be a close contest between the top three teams from Haberdashers’ Askes (ECF 175), Reading School (170) and Hampton (168). However round 3 was pivotal as Haberdashers’ convincingly beat Reading. Haberdasher’s duly went on to win all their matches to amass 27 out of a maximum of 30 game points to win the event. RGS Guildford came second with 22 game points and Hampton and reading joint 3rd with 21 points.

We are very grateful to Eton College for providing their facilities free of charge

prizegiving overview1
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It was a privilege to have British Chess Champion Jonathan Hawkins present the trophies to Haberdashers’ Askes’, whose captain was British U18 Champion Ravi Haria.

Read on — ECF Secondary School Rapidplay Chess Tournament

Yang-Fan Zhou at Sunny Beach

Yang-FanCongratulations to Yang-Fan Zhou who finished equal first in the Sunny Beach Open in Bulgaria held from 6th-14th September 2014. His round 9 game was especially entertaining –
Final standings –

Congratulations – Louise Head

Louise-in-GreeceCongratulations to Louise Head who took the silver medal, finishing as the second highest woman in the 2014 European Amateur in Eretria, Greece. She also won a cash prize and has been invited to the World Amateur Championships 2015 with free board and accommodation. Links to the tournament — 1 | 2

A brand-new WCM

AkshayaKalaiyalahanCongratulations to Akshaya Kalaiyalahan of Nonsuch School in Surrey who has qualified for the WCM title at the 2014 Olympiad in Tromso by virtue of her 50% score for the England team. Ironically, she had also recently qualified for the title when her rating went over 2000 for the first time.
Akshaya was the 2013 joint British Womens Champion as well as the 2013 British Under 12 and 2011 British Under 10 Champion, not to mention winning British Girls titles in the U11, U12 and U14 age groups. She will be representing England at the European Youth Championship in Batumi, Georgia from 18th-29th October 2014 in the Under 14 girls section.

Sharon Daniel – congratulations

Congratulations to eleven-year-old Sharon Daniel of Bolton Girls’ School who won the 2014 Child Genius show broadcast on Channel 4. Sharon was the British Under 11 Girls Chess Champion in 2013 and represented England at the 2013 World Youth in the United Arab Emirates. She is also part of the Manchester A team in the Junior Four Nations Chess League