Some news about the World University Championship, which starts tomorrow. England have a team of four players in this, three of them at Westcountry universities: Peter Poobalasingam is at Bath, Sarah Hegarty at Bristol and Hannah Dale at Exeter. Good luck to them.
Apologies for the long delay from my last postings. I've been a little busy trying to organise the Jonathan Latham Memorial Congress. Now that that's up and running I can get back to the important busy of reporting on south- west chess.
There are several people from the south- west competing at the British Championships currently taking place in Canterbury. Please note that it doesn't show any players' clubs as best I can see on the site, so if I miss anyone let me know and I'll update this.
Firstly, the week 1 rapidplay.
Cornwall- born, but now Scotland- resident, IM Andrew Greet was favourite on paper to win this, with a very impressive rapidplay grade of 221. Unfortunately a loss in round 5 against eventual winner Chris Briscoe put paid to his chances, and he finished on 4.5/6.
Millfield pupil Rhys Cummings was jointly- leading the field after 4 rounds, with a perfect score. Sadly losses in the last 2 rounds saw him finish in a tie for 8th place. Nevertheless, he managed 198 grading- performance, well above his rapidplay grade of 185.
Newton Abbot's Trefor Thynne started with 2.5/3 before 2 losses and a win saw him finish on 3.5/6.
Also from Newton Abbot, youngster Freddie Sugden had a rollercoaster of a tournament, starting and ending with 2 losses, and with 2 wins sandwiched in the middle. 2/6 saw him perform slightly above his published grade.
In the Atkins (Open) Weekender, the results only show up to the pairings for round 4. Angelo Castruccio of Clifton was on 2/4, with a half- point bye in round 4. In rd.1 Angelo beat Stephen Pride (grade 155), before losing in rd. 2 against G James Danneberg (187), and then drawing in rd. 3 with Peter Ackley (180).
In the Yates (u125/ 1450) Weekender, Freddie Sugden was on 1.5/3 going into Sunday morning's fourth round. So far he has defeated Phillip Green (81 grade), had a half- point bye in round 2, and lost against Alexander Harwick (131). His opponent in round 4 was David Everitt (123).
In the Major Open, Hannah Dale, who I believe is a student in Exeter, is currently on 2.5/6. She has scored several notable results, including beating someone 237 points higher rated then herself, and drawing with 3 other much higher rated opponents.
In the British u16 Championship, Millfield student and Downend club member Megan Owens became the British u15 Girls' Champion, scoring 3.5/7. Also in the u16 Championship was Freddie Sugden of Newton Abbott. Freddie scored 2.5/7, scoring wins against 2 opponents who were both nearly 300 points higher- rated then him, and drawing with someone 200 points higher- rated.
In the British u140/ 1600 Championship, Tom Thorpe of Pete's Potential club scored an undefeated 3/5, with 1 win and 4 draws. I should also mention that Tom passed his arbiters exam whilst at the British, and so there may very well be a newly- qualified Arbiter in Bristol in the near future.
In the British u180/ 2000 Championship, Jerry Humphreys of Downend scored 2/5, losing once and drawing the other 4 games. Also playing in this tournament was Trefor Thynne from Newton Abbott, who also scored 2/5, wining once, drawing twice, and losing twice.
In the British Senior Championship, David Collier from Clifton is currently on 1.5/2, and faces Aiden Corish (estimated rating 1890) today.
In the British Championship there are many entrants from the south- west this year. England no.1, and Taunton- resident Mickey Adams is currently leading the field by a clear point, with 5.5/6. Today he faces GM Stephen Gordon with black.
On board 5, Swindon- based GM Peter Wells is on 4/6, and today faces IM Paul Littlewood.
Next up is Bath University student Chris Dorrington, also on 4/6. He has a tough game today against IM- elect Jonathan Hawkins on board 8.
On board 10 is Paignton- based GM Keith Arkell. Keith hasn't had the best of tournaments so far, and is lagging somewhat behind on 3.5/6. It's certainly not for want of trying, however. In round 5 he made George Salimbeni play an ending on until move 160 before finally acquiescing to a draw. Today he faces 2233- rated FM Dave Ledger.
On board 11 IM Andrew Greet, who drew an epic 100-move+ game in the last round, faces 2208- rated John Anderson today, with both on 3.5/6.
Millfield student Rhys Cummings is next, on board 20. He's performing well above his 1986 rating thus far, and today faces 2244- rated David Spence, with both on 3/6.
Next board to them is an all south- west match, with fellow blogger IM Jack Rudd facing Bath University student James Jackson. Jack had a tremendous start, defeating 2 GMs and an IM, but has slipped back since then. Nevertheless, it's impressive that this will be the first game at this years Championships where Jack's opponent won't be a titled player. For James' part, he'll be looking to bounce back today after a loss against fellow Bath University student Chris Dorrington yesterday.
Devon- based Dominic Mackle is currently on 2.5/6, and today faces 2173- rated Peter Shaw. Dominic has twice beaten higher- rated opponents, and also drew with an opponent rated 200+ points higher then him, and is having a good tournament so far.
On board 32, WECU Congress qualifer Paul Helbig is currently on 2/6. He hasn't had the best of tournaments thus far, performing a bit below his rating, and will be looking for a decent latter few rounds.
On board 37, Frome Congress qualifier Alan Pleasants is currently on 1.5/6. Alan is performing around about his own rating, having been outrated in every game thus far.
Finally on board 38 is Yeovil Congress qualifer Patryk Krzyzanowski, currently on 1.5/6. Patryk scored his first win in the last round, and will be looking to build on that today against similarly- rated Chris Fegan (2051).
The South-West players who played in the South Wales International had varying results. The full crosstable is here; I shall mention below the region's players who ended up in the prize list:
2nd Keith Arkell (Devon) 7 3rd= Peter Wells (Wiltshire) 6½ Best= untitled player and best= Welsh u-2300 player Allan Pleasants (Dorset) 5½ Best= untitled player and best= English u-2300 player Jeremy Menadue (Cornwall) 5½ Best= English junior Robert Thompson (Devon) 4
I myself had a frustrating tournament, passing up a golden opportunity to beat the eventual winner in round 2; I only had one game I was really satisfied with. On seeing the final table, some might argue that this game ended up being irrelevant.