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March 2017
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100th British – Rd. 6

The Rd. 6 draw for the top 5 games on the demonstration boards was as follows:-

Bd. White       Black  
1 Howell  1 Wells
2 Hebden  .5  .5 Gordon
3 Williams 4  .5  .5 Hawkins 4
4 Mackle 4  .5  .5 Lalic 4
5 Arkell  1  0 Fernandez 4

Peter Wells joins the top table after his win against Kosten, as does Dominic Mackle after his win over Gary Lane. The other newcomer was Keith Arkell.

Mark Hebden receives his Best Game prize from Chief Arbiter David Welch .

Howell v Wells.

Arkell v Fernandez.

Mackle v Lalic

Williams v Hawkins.

Of these 5 games, Howell kicked on with a win to put himself in a clear lead on 5.5. The Hebden v.  Gordon draw put them 2nd=, while there is a whole phalanx of 9 players on 4.5, as some fell back with draws allowing winners like Arkell, Ghasi and Kosten to make up ground with wins. Though undefeated, defending champion Gawain Jones has conceded 4 draws, and needs a good 2nd week to get back in contention.

Guess what! The Seniors' Championship stated today. Ken Norman has the T-shirt and is playing Devon match captain, Brian Hewson. (1-0)

Senior chess activity is becoming so popular that new grade-limited sections have been introduced to cater for the number involved. So as well as the 65 players in the main section, there are 24 in the U-130 Seniors section and 19 in the U-150. Do the maths and that’s 108 entries in total . This latter tournament was held during the 1st week, allowing these stronger players to enter the Open section as well if they so wished, while the U-130s are held concurrent with the main section.

The U-150 was won by local player, John Gorodi, who has a grade of 159. How so? Well, that’s his new grade, whereas his grade when entering was 141. In circumstances like this it would be very hard, for example,  to deny a player whose grade had just gone up from 129 to 131 a place in the U-130, after he/she had taken a special week off work and booked his hotel room for Week 2. Anyone who thinks Gorodi was, perhaps a little lucky in this respect, should bear in mind the fact that he suffered a nasty car crash on his way home on the Wednesday evening and was barely strong enough to travel in to play for the last 2 rounds, and could barely walk up to collect his trophy. (see below).

John Gorodi, inaugural British Seniors U-150 Champion receiving his tropy from ECF President, Roger Edwards.

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