Juniors retain national title with record victory

U11s Chess
U11s Chess

The current strength of Sussex Junior Chess was demonstrated the weekend before last when the U11s retained their national title in dominant style.

They won the premier age-group title with the highest points tally in the history of an event which has been contested for nearly fifty years, and their winning margin was also a record. They scored 52 out of a possible 60 points, and scored eight more points than the second-placed county. With chess scoring awarded a single point for a win, and half a point for a draw, this margin equated to eight more victories than their nearest competitors could manage.

The EPSCA (English Primary Schools Chess Association) U11 championship has been contested annually by English county sides since 1967 and is considered the most significant of the various age-group titles on offer. Each county enters a team of twenty U11 juniors who each play three high-pressure games during the day. A squad of 24 Sussex youngsters was drawn from all parts of the county, from Chichester to Bexhill and points in between, with many travelling with their parents up to the venue in Northampton the night before.

Coach Mike Forster was naturally delighted: “My view is that 52 points out of a possible 60 is right on the limit of what is achievable at this sort of event. It was only possible due to the combination of an extremely talented group of individuals and the exceptional commitment and support of all concerned, which made all the difference to our team spirit and approach.”

Sussex Junior Chess is a not for profit organisation run by volunteers which exists to promote and popularise chess amongst school age children in the county. It provides training days at venues around the county, and organises tournaments for individuals and schools. It also selects and runs county teams who compete in national and international events. See www.sussexjuniorchess.org.

Please see attached photograph of the victorious squad. For further information and interviews please contact Mark Currah on 07792 774501 or mcurrah@hotmail.com.

Contributed by

Mark Currah