May Mini-Rapidplay

Sasha Kerbel won the combined Kings/ Rooks section in the Saturday chess club mini rapidplay competition on Saturday 5th May with 4 straight wins. Alex Cimurs won the Rooks award as the best ranked player from that section (ecf <65) on 3pts.

The Knights section featured 17 players with many playing their first chess club mini- rapidplay. Sophie Mehta won the section on 4pts out of 5 on tie break from Holly Fowkes and Lailim Ryskali by virtue of her first loss being in the last round of the competition.

Full Results are here:  Kings/Rooks, Knights

The next mini rapidplay will take place on June 2nd.

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Leicestershire 12th in EPSCA U11 Final

Leicestershire finished 12th out of the 15 teams that competed in EPSCA (English Primary Schools Chess Association) U11 final in Birmingham on the 21st April.

With the addition of the strong Southern Counties teams the standard was clearly a lot higher then the Northern Zone Qualifier and it should be noted that Leicestershire again finished 2nd out of the 5 teams from the North despite more than half the team being U9. Apparently Leicestershire haven’t qualified for this final since 2004 (and then didn’t contest the final) so progress is definitely being made at junior level.

Daniel Chen did particularly well on board 2 being unbeaten with 2 wins and a draw and a trio of under 9 players Kajus Mikalajunas (aged 7), Noor Datoo, and Alex Cimurs did very well to score 2 wins out of 3.

Full results are here

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Win for U130 team against Lincs and Notts

Leicestershire achieved a comprehensive victory against Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire in the Junior U130 12 board competition that took place in North Hykenham on Sunday 25th March. Unfortunately Yorkshire, who have won this event on 3 out of the 4 previous occasions, were unable to compete this time and so a 3 round jamboree was played instead rather than an all play all. In the 36 games played Leicestershire won 21 drew 10 and only lost 3 to score an overwhelming 28 pts ahead of Lincolnshire (11.5) and Notts (9.5). Not surprisingly there were some excellent individual scores with 3 wins out of 3 for Antoni Krupa, Jason Lv and Rory Haywood and 2 wins and a draw for Peter Mottram-Epson, Milly Kotecha, Alastair Mottram-Epson, Adam Kerbel and the Lindsay Pyun.

The full team was: Ben Raine, Sasha Kerbel, George Worrow-Goodin, Peter Mottram-Epson, Thomas Blay, Antoni Krupa, Milly Kotecha, Alastair Mottram-Epson, Rory Haywood, Jason Lv, Adam Kerbel, Lindsay Pyun

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Silver for U11s in EPSCA Northern Zonal

Leicestershire’s 20 board U11 team (10 of whom are U9) pulled off a remarkable 2nd place in the EPSCA Northern Zonal on the 17th March behind the victors Warwickshire shading the Midland U11 champions Notts into 3rd place on tie break. In so doing they comfortably qualify for the National final which takes  place in Birmingham on the Sat 21st April.

Just over a month ago the U11 team had finished 4th behind Notts (25), Warks (20) and Northants (14.5) on 12.5 pts in the Midland Competition. However without an U9 competition taking place at the same time Leicestershire were able to strengthen the U11 team with it’s talented and improving U9s and this proved to be a decisive factor in the marked improvement in the team’s performance.

After the first round (of 3), Leicestershire lay in 3rd place on 11.5pts but behind the front runners and favourites Warks & Notts (both on 14pts). In the 2nd round Warks scored another impressive 14 pts (out of 20) to open up a 3 point lead over Notts who this time only scored 11pts to Leicestershire’s 11.5, shortening the gap between 2nd and 3rd (25 to 23). At this stage Leicestershire looked secure in 3rd having a 3.5pt lead over Cheshire & North Wales in 4th, but overhauling a 2pt lead on Notts for 2nd place in the last round seemed a big ask.

In round 3 Leicestershire saved the best till last improving to 13.5pts for the round (constituting 12 wins and 3 draws with only 5 losses over the 20 boards) and Notts faltered dropping to only 10.5 pts for the round. The result was a tie for 2nd between Notts and Leicestershire on 36.5 pts which had to go to the 2nd tiebreak (progressive elimination of lowest board scores) before Leicestershire were pronounced the silver medallists.

Rakym Serik (board 2), Jason Lv (board 4) and Olivia Chen (bd 14) won all 3 games and Umar Syed (bd 3), Evan Miles (bd 11) and Sophie Mehta (reserves) were also unbeaten on 2.5 pts. The well known ability of our most experienced and highly graded players was clearly on display with 11.5 points scored by our top 5 boards, but every 1/2 point is vital in such events and significantly in this one everyone scored points for the team.

Team listing: Daniel Chen, Rakym Serik, Umar Syed, Jason Lv, Austin Meynell, Lindsay Pyun, Anant Kapoor, Kajus Mikalajunas, Hope Wheway, Aryan Ankolekar, Evan Miles, Noor Datoo, Joshua Tang, Olivia Chen, Zaara Syed, Avnish Patel, Aarav Sinha, Alex Shen, Shey Shah- Thakerar, Madhav Eradi.

Reserves: Holly Fowkes, Lailim Ryskali, Sophie Mehta, Catherine Lv, Hafsa Syed

Team Scores:

1st Warwickshire 41.5

2nd Leicestershire 36.5

3rd Nottinghamshire 36.5

4th Cheshire & North Wales 31.5

5th Tameside 26

6th Staffordshire 24.5

7th Lancashire 23

8th Wirral 20.5

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ECF U18 County Team Championships

Leicestershire competed in the tough 12 board Open section of the ECF U18 County Team Championships in Grantham on Sunday 25th February and gave a good account of themselves against very stiff opposition. Six counties sent teams to the competition and the top three teams (Kent, Sussex, Surrey) historically have always been considered to be amongst the very strongest chess counties in the country. Continue reading

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Bronze for U9s and U11 Girls in Midland Team Championships

The Midland U11, U9 Team Championships were staged at Leicester Grammar School on the 10th February this year barely 6 days after the Leicester Junior Chess Congress took place at the same venue. The competing counties were Notts, Northants, Warkwickshire and Leicestershire. Continue reading

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Leicester Junior Congress

Leicester Junior Congress took place on Sunday 4th Feb at Leicester Grammar and saw closely fought competition throughout the three sections (Open, Major (U80) and Minor (U30) with awards being made in each age category within each section. Continue reading

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Notts Rapidplay

A number of Leicester juniors played in this 6 round swiss open congress. Rakym Serik, who was playing in the Major (U160) had a remarkable competition at this level to score 3.5 pts out of 6 and which could so easily have been 4 had he accepted a draw in his last game before an endgame blunder turned the tables against him.

In the Minor (U110) Joseph Ward-Langman had a great unbeaten day on 5pts to win the section jointly with the Notts University student with whom he drew in the last round. Umar Syed also played in the section and scored 2.5pts.

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South of England Junior Championship

Jason Lv and Daniel Chen both played in this event (an England U11 Trial qualifier) scoring 3pts and 2pts respectively with Jason playing particularly well to achieve a half-norm.

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J4NCL 2nd Weekend – Telford

A young Leicester team in the 2nd division finished 14th out off 22 teams. After a difficult first day with only a point from the first three rounds, the team rallied well in the 2nd day to draw in the 4th round and win the 5th to finish on 4 points. Jason Lv had a superb competition on board 3 winning all 5 matches and Sasha Kerbel who just played on the Sunday also won both his matches. The full team was Daniel Chen, Umar Syed, Sasha Kerbel, Jason Lv, Rakshai Muthusamy and Kareem Patel.

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