Christmas Speed Handicap Results

We finally held the thirty fourth Crowthorne Christmas speed handicap tournament last night (Saturday 2nd April) shortly before Easter, having postponed the event on its original date, shortly before Christmas, due to Covid restrictions. Nonetheless, a number of people thoughtfully entered into the spirit of the occasion by wearing their Christmas jumpers, and Scott even appeared in his legendary snowman onesie. Attendance was roughly half that of the previous over the board tournament in 2019, but that didn’t make the chess any more refined: the same extraordinary twists and turns of fate occurred on the boards as ever.

The winners of the two groups were Scott and Daniel and, appropriately perhaps, they were also the two finalists. Daniel reached the final beating Harriet in the semis after a hard-fought game in which he ingeniously sacrificed a queen to reach an advantageous bishop and pawn ending, converting it to a win through precise and careful technique. Scott had a somewhat quicker semi-final win against Mark (Cross) in a choppy tactical melee typical of the speed handicap.

In the final Scott played the opening which has given him so much success this season, the Black Lion defence albeit move in advance as white, and it delivered the goods for him again. Daniel’s king came under pressure along files and diagonals, leading to Scott delivering an on-the-board checkmate.

Congratulations to Scott for his first Speed Handicap win and fine performance all evening. Daniel’s turn will surely come.

At the other end of the field of achievements, Christine deprived Colin (Purdon) of the wooden spoon and bottle of wine. Thank you to her and to all who attended.

Christine Receives the coveted Wooden Spoon (plus consolation prize) from Club Secretary, Jonathan Welton
Congratulations to this year’s Christmas Handicap winner, Scott Leadbetter!

Many thanks to Jonathan for organising another enjoyable Christmas Handicap.

Christmas Handicap – CANCELLED

Owing to the increased risk of transmission posed by the omicron variant, Wellington College has made the (entirely understandable) decision to close the bar until further notice.

As a result, the Christmas Handicap will NOT take place this Saturday (18th December).

(“Cancelled” may be a bit strong, as we are considering alternative ways of holding the tournament in the New Year.)

February on-line blitz tournament

Congratulations to Mark Taylor for winning the club’s February tournament, which was played yesterday as part of the usual club meeting.

The tournament was played in the Arena format on www.chess.com, where players are automatically paired against an opponent as soon as they have finished a game.

The medal positions were:

1st Mark Taylor with 6 points (six straight wins!)
2nd Harvey Duckers with 4.5 points
3rd Colin Purdon with 3.5 points

On-line Club Tournament this Wednesday

On this Wednesday’s club night we will have a mini tournament using a relatively fast time control. We will default to use 5m+5s, unless there is a clear preference for something else. We’ll be using chess.com instead of our usual lichess, for the benefit of those who prefer chess.com.

Other than that, there will be time enough for chat, and post-match analysis of games worthy of analysis.

8pm on Wednesday – your chance to be the club’s February champion 😉

Richard Webb wins the Khyber Cup

Congratulations to Richard for winning the Khyber Cup this year. This year the event was held online, using a slightly faster time control of 10m+5s for the entire game rather than the traditional 20m+10s used for the over the board event. Thanks are due to Jonathan Welton, who organised the event using lichess.org as the platform.

Richard won the 5 round Swiss tournament with 4.5 points, a full point ahead of Harvey Duckers and Mark Taylor, who shared second place with 3.5 points.

Full details of the tournament can be found at the event on lichess.org.

Richard’s best game was probably his first round encounter against Jonathan. Jonathan got a slightly passive position out of the opening, and it is impressive to see how Richard managed to gradually increase his advantage to a winning one, whilst giving his opponent virtually no counterplay, despite Jonathan’s best efforts.

As can be seen in the Honours Board Page, Richard is no stranger to winning the Khyber competition!

Khyber Cup 2020

The Khyber Cup is back!

This year’s Khyber Cup will take place on Saturday 5th September, 14:00.

This is a 5 round Swiss, with 10m+5s time control and a couple of minutes between rounds for a breathing space.

There is a Zoom session available for those who want to talk between rounds. Note that you should mute and turn off your speaker when playing to avoid being distracted. Nonetheless, avoid commenting on people’s in-progress games just in case they still have their speaker on.

This is a friendly event; please feel free to invite friends and family to join. Note that it is only open to members of the Crowthorne Team on Lichess. If you or your invitees, are not members you will have to join first (and to do that you will need a lichess membership).

For more details, please refer to Jonathan’s email.

And the winner is …

Congratulations to Harvey Duckers for winning the second Crowthorne online blitz tournament, held yesterday on chess.com

This was another 5-minute “Arena” tournament, although this time not themed by opening. More doubtless to follow, as playing over-the-board chess still looks to be some way off in the future.

Meeting online Wednesday night – mini-tournament

This Wednesday (May 13th at 8pm) we plan to have a mini tournament, just a plain tournament this time with no fixed opening, and we will try using chess.com this time. It will be possible to play in the tournament simply by being logged on in chess.com – and being a member of the Crowthorne Chess Club group – but it helps with the organisation if you are on the zoom call. Plus you’ll get to hear all the exasperated cries as people blunder away queens.

Hope to see you on Wednesday.

Please see Jonathan’s email for the zoom meeting details.