On Friday 10th February, the West of England regional qualifying tournament for the annual Civil Service Chess Championship, took place at the Met Office, Exeter. There were 7 entries, all from Devon, even though all civil servants from Cornwall, Somerset, Gloucestershire, and Dorset were eligible. There must be many thousands of civil servants in these counties, but why none of them entered this prestigious event is not clear, especially as the impressive venue stands at the junction of the M5 and A30 and is easily accessible from all directions.
This tournament was held on an All-Play-All basis at RapidPlay rates, and the outcome was as follows:
|2||Steve Murray||145||Met Office||½||X||½||½||1||1||1||4½|
|5||Wilf Taylor||142||Met Office||0||0||0||1||X||0||1||2|
|6||David Thompson||UG||Met Office||0||0||0||0||1||X||1||2|
Brusey, Murray and Pope thus qualify for the finals, due to be held at Leeds University in July. The current holder of the national title is Alan Brusey, who won the very first championship over 20 years ago.