Royal Grammar School

Newcastle

Team Chess Challenge

Team Chess Challenge

On Wednesday 22nd April the RGS Senior School Chess Team competed in the National Final of an event called 'Team Chess Challenge' at Imperial College in London.  The team had qualified for this as a result of winning a competition at Durham Johnston earlier in the year.  It was a long day, setting off from Newcastle at 8am and returning at 9:30pm.  I am pleased to say the team was smiling on the way back since they finished second out of 14 teams and won some trophies!  
 
The event started with the team working together in a simultaneous display against Grandmaster Jonathan Mestel.  He was playing 14 games at the same time, but clocks were being used and he didn't make his moves fast enough, so he lost almost all of the games on time!  Our team reached a lost position but won on time after the Grandmaster's last seconds ticked away.
 
After lunch it was onto the main event.  There were five rounds, with four players in a team.  Our team was James Moreby, Joseph Dalton, Zheming Zhang and Joshua Fernandes.  The time control was very fast, with only 10 minutes each on the clock, plus an extra 2 seconds per move to stop you from losing on time.  In the first round we beat King Edward Camp Hill 3.5-0.5.  Round 2 was closer, with a narrow 2.5-1.5 win against Wilson's School.  In the third round we lost narrowly against Mill Hill School 2.5-1.5.  The fourth round victory was crucial in helping up to finish second, with a 3.5-0.5 victory against Millfield School.  The last round was our hardest pairing of the event, and well done to Joshua for winning his game in our 3-1 loss to Manchester Grammar School.  
 
The final individual results were:  James 2/5 Joseph 3/5 Zheming 3/5 Joshua 4/5.
 
The final team standings (out of 20) were:
 
1 Manchester GS 18                            5 Millfield School 11                             9 Magdalen College School 9.5             13 KE VI Camp Hill 5                     
2 RGS Newcastle 12                            6 Eltham College 11                              10 Reserves 9.5                                         14 Bangor GS 3 
3 Wilson’s School 11.5                        7 Mill Hill HS 10.5                                  11 Torquay Boys’ GS 9
4 Hampton School 11.5                      8 Nottingham High School 10.5           12 Westminster Under School 8
 
Everyone enjoyed the day.  This was a year 13 and under tournament, and our pupils are in years 7, 8, 9 and 10, so they have a few more years left to play in the event.
 
Mr Eggleston