This annual event in the calendar sees an Under 11 team and an Under 9 team compete against other ‘associations’ (mostly counties) across the country. This semi-final stage pits Somerset against other teams in the south of England. The U11s competed against 6 other teams in Maidenhead; and the U9s compete in Southampton on 14th March (results will be updated here when they are in!)
The Wilts & West of England Junior Chess Championships for 2020 were held in Swindon on the 22nd and 23rd February 2020. It is good to have this event back in the calendar following the cancellation of the event last year. The championships included many different age categories over the weekend, with trophies being awarded for Wiltshire champions, West of England champions, and the Age Section champion. Lots of trophies and medals to be won!
The European Youth Rapid and Blitz Championships 2019 took place in Tallin in Estonia from 30th November to 4th December 2019. The England team were selected by the English Chess Federation (ECF), and Somerset Junior Chess are proud to have Gabriel Keech selected to play for England in this tournament!
The annual West of England and South Wales County Team Championships took place on Saturday 11th January 2020 in Chepstow. Somerset Junior Chess fielded three teams: Under 14’s, Under 11’s and Under 9’s.
There were 4 Gigafinals held in the 2019 Delancey UK Schools Chess Challenge: Northern, Midlands and two in South-East England. This is the next stage on from the Megafinals, held across the UK earlier this year.
It’s great to see so many Somerset junior players representing the region in the Gigafinals, too many to mention all by name, but congratulations to everyone who reached this stage of the competition.
The Somerset Junior Chess Grand Prix 2018/19 season comprised of 4 grand prix events taking place across the county, with more than 130 children taking part this year. It’s great to see so many children in Somerset playing chess and meeting other children from the region.
The Top 4 players in the league table standings for each age section were invited to the SJC Finals Day 2019, held at Millfield School in Street on the 30th June. Across the 7 age categories, 28 in total players battled it out to determine the final placings.
The European Schools Chess Championships 2019 took place in Constanta, Romania and the English Chess Federation (ECF) selected a team to compete in the competition against some of the best junior chess players in Europe. Two members of the England team were Matthew Timbrell (Under 11) and Toby Kan (Under 13), both representing England for the first time in an international tournament.
The EPSCA England U11 team trials were held on the 27th and 28th April 2019 in Liverpoool. The trials were for those players qualifying from tournaments held throughout the UK during the 2018/19 season. Ernie Fields and Matthew Timbrell both achieved the required qualification for the trials, and competed in 6 games against some of the best Under 11’s in the UK.
The Girls Under 11’s county team final was held in March 2019. Somerset were not represented with a full team, however, Kandara Acharya featured on Board 2 for the Wiltshire team and achieved a maximum 3 wins from her 3 games.
It was great to see so many new faces at the final Grand Prix of the 2017/18 season. More than 70 children competed at the event at Combe Down Primary School in Bath on Sunday 15th April 2018. The school is a lovely venue to use, with plenty of space in the playing hall and parent rooms. Thanks to the school for stepping in to host the event at short notice.
For children playing in their first ever chess tournament, we hope you enjoyed the experience. Playing six games of chess in a day requires a huge amount of effort and concentration, so well done for playing all games. It’s often said that you learn more from games you lost than games you won, and we hope that everyone went home feeling like they have improved their game or learnt something irrespective of their final score.