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46th Torbay Congress

Total entries this year were 153, an increase of 1 on last year.

This event has one of the longest prizelists, due to the inclusion of Torbay League titles. Ray Chubb has kindly supplied the names of the main winners.

All scores out of 5.

Open Section: 1st =  Neil Carr (Writtle) & John Stephens (Exmouth), both on 4 pts.

Major Section (U-170): 1st  Richard Desmedt (Wombwell) on 4½ .

Intermediate Section (U-U-140):  1st David Jenkins (Camborne) 4½ .

Minor Section (U-120 ): 1st Geoff Jenkins (Exeter) on 4½ .

The British Championship Qualifying Place and Bursary of £100 went to John Stephens of the Exmouth Club. 

Torbay League Individual Championships:

Open (Basil Wallis Cup):       Steve Homer (Newton Abbot) on 2½ .

Major   (Challenge Cup):       Bill Ingham (Teignmouth) on 4.        

Intermediate:                           John Dean (Plymouth) on 2½.                      

Minor   (Candidates Cup):    Mike Cuggy (Brixham) on 4. 

Best Score by a Devon Player in the Graded Sections:

(Ralph Newman Cup):  Geoff Jenkins (Pinhoe).

Best Score by a Junior.

John Whitfield Cup awarded to the best junior score across all 4 sections. The winner was Reece Whittington in the Minor Section scoring 2 at the age of 13 years, Grade 105.

Team Event.             A four-player team event was held for the first time, with the players making up the team having to come from the same club. There were 5 teams. Plymouth; Teignmouth; South Hams; Exeter and Wessex.

Wessex won the £40 team prize. The team consisted of Mike Yeo Open), Allan Pleasants (Open), Keith Gregory (Open) and Joe Coburn (Open). Scoring 10½  from a possible 20. In 2nd place were the Exeter team on 9. Dave Regis (Open), Charles Keen (Major), Jeremy Amos (Intermediate) and Terrance Earnshaw (Minor).

The key game for John Stephens came in Rd. 4 when he had Black against Mike Yeo (202). He played the Sicilian, but diverted from usual book lines on move 7 and played sharp moves accurately. He trapped a piece on move 19 forcing White to resign 3 moves later.

This put John in the clear lead and enabled him to calculate that a draw with White in the final round would not only guarantee at least a share of 1st prize but also probably give him the British Championship place based on Sum-of-Opponents’ Scores.

He was drawn against the vastly experienced Norman Stephenson, but as he had been playing all the previous week in the Seniors’ Congress at Exmouth, making this his 10th game in 7 days, he was not disinclined to accept John’s suggestion of a draw after just 6 moves.

Mike Yeo (l) analyses his game with John Stephens, while John's girlfriend, Sarah Hodge, looks on.

Stephens & Stephenson get Rd. 5 under way. Another handshake followed minutes later.

Wheeler vs Brusey (l) & Dunne vs Shaw against a brilliant Torquay backcloth


General view of playing area.

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