Five members of the club took part in these championships, which were held at North Shields. from July 22 to August 4th.
Bruce Reed had an excellent week in the under 140 category. With a grade of 121 he might have expected slim returns but he emerged with a fine score of 2.5/5, including two wins, one of them over Ted Jarah.
Messrs Wrigley played in the weekend rapidplay event. David didn’t get too much joy in the Open, but Tim had a wonderful time, recording four wins and two draws out of six to win the under 160 contest. A fantastic achievement!
Week 2 of the Championships saw Tim back in action together with derek Blair in the under 160 five day event. Alas, Tim had obviously left his form on the rapidplay board, for he ended up with just half a point from 5 games, I will spare his blushes by not going into details! Derek, graded 26th of the 49 contestants, had two wins over players graded significantly below him, but lost his three games against higher graded opponents, two of the losses coming from blunders on his part.
Steve Larkin played in the under 120 event, where he was equal second highest graded of the 25 players. Round 1 was a hard fought affair, lasting three and a half hours, against Andrew Camp of Colwyn Bay, graded 98. Steve won the endgame with passed pawns after various near mating scares along the way. In round 2 he faced Anantha Anilkumar of London, graded 70. Steve achieved total control of the board and initiated a big attack, but totally overlooked a forced mate in two! Round 3 saw another very long game (2 minutes short of 4 hours and the very last game of the morning to finish) against David Archer of Godalming, graded 99. In a very close game, Steve let a pawn slip in the closing stages and only rescued a draw by the skin of his teeth. In round 4 he faced Lee Bullock, graded 94, and played gung-ho chess, sacrificing a pawn for a full-blooded kingside attack, only to leave a bishop en prise. By the time the attack petered out, he was a rook down – game over. More gung-ho chess in round 5 against Gregory Bailey, graded 97. Steve pushed his queen deep into enemy territory on move 9, prompting an error which left him a pawn and the position up. Black resigned after two hours as Steve had every prospect of two passed and connected pawns. So a huge sigh of relief from Steve as 50% and respectability (just about) was achieved. Curiously, Steve scored 2.5/3 with black and 0/2 with white!