July gradings are out

Name July 2019 January 2019 July 2018
Ravi Arulnandhy 170 C 168 D 169 D
Mindaugas Beinoras 228 D 227 D 229 D
Richard Bodily 173 B 176 B 178 B
Mike Botteley 160 C 153 B 154 A
Andy Chapman 160 B 166 C 169 C
Nick Collacott 170 C 166 C 164 C
Ben Cox 137 B 130 A 124 A
David Cox 77 A 74 A 63 A
Lucian Cox 113 A 111 A 107 A
Toby Cox 164 A 150 A 139 A
James Gardner 187 B 171 B 167 C
Peter Gill 135 C 133 C 138 C
Paul Habershon 175 A 183 A 180 A
John Harbour 133 C 141 C 139 C
Chris Hill 147 C 146 B 140 B
Qais Karimi 166 A 164 A 159 A
Tony Lawrence 45 C 49 C 54 D
Steve Ledger 195 A 188 A 186 A
Mac Mackenzie 68 D 67 C 71 C
Richard McMorran 138 A 138 A 132 A
Gerry Nolan 124 D 127 D
Marc Obi 160 A 167 A 167 A
Ben Pike 104 D 102 D 103 C
Steve Pike 163 C 168 C 170 C
Callum Shields 128 D 137 D 134 E
Alex Taylor 168 C 164 C 163 C
Giuseppe Valerio 140 D 149 C 150 C
Nigel Walker 96 E 95 D 95 D
Robert Walker 128 B 128 C 128 B

Some notable improvements by Steve L, James and Toby. Full details may be found here.

For team selection, an ordered list of available players may be helpful:-
228 – Mindaugas Beinoras
195 – Steve Ledger
187 – James Gardner
175 – Paul Habershon
173 – Richard Bodily
170 – Ravi Arulnandhy
170 – Nick Collacott
168 – Alex Taylor
166 – Qais Karimi
164 – Toby Cox
163 – Steve Pike
160 – Mike Botteley
160 – Andy Chapman
160 – Marc Obi
140 – Giuseppe Valerio
138 – Richard McMorran
137 – Ben Cox
135 – Peter Gill
128 – Callum Shields
128 – Robert Walker
113 – Lucian Cox
96 – Nigel Walker
77 – David Cox
68 – Mac Mackenzie
45 – Tony Lawrence





Junior success

Some junior chess news from the weekend.

Toby and Lucian both attended the “Gigafinal” of the UK Schools Chess Challenge in Manchester, one of four Gigafinals being held, having previously qualified from the more local “Megafinal”.

Lucian scored 4/6 in the Under 11 section. His tournament was noteworthy for playing against prodigy Yichen Han (candidate master, and a grade of 207!); Lucian managed to enter the end-game a pawn up, but was unable to sustain it and eventually lost.

Toby won the Under 14 section with a score of 5/6. He now goes on to compete with the winners from the other 3 Gigafinals in the Terafinal (the national final) in September.

Summer specials

Over the Summer, we will be once more organising some light-hearted (?) events:-

11 July             Time/material handicap                            Peter Gill

18 July             Variations                                                        Toby Cox/Joe Valerio

25 July             Endings                                                           Richard Bodily/Alex Taylor

1 August         Gambits                                                           Steve Ledger

Everyone is very welcome.

Additionally, Steve Ledger will be organising a curry evening in August to which John Harbour and Chris Hill will be invited so that we can give them both a proper send off – he will advise the date separately but let him know if you don’t hear.

Apart from the night chosen the club will be open throughout August for casual chess or one night competitions.

Division 2 playoffs – promotion decided

Thanks to Peter for his report:-


A hard fought draw in the second playoff game so James goes up. Mike managed to win a pawn but his own pawn structure was poor and though he later got to two Rooks against Bishop and Rook (I’m not sure how many pawns each by then) he had to settle for a draw.

Ravi plays the Game of the Season!

In the game of the season competition, Ravi’s game against Graham Borrowdale accrued the most votes. Nick’s game against Marek Gladysz and Qais’s draw with Steve Pike shared second place.

All three games are worth a look if you haven’t already.

Division 2 Playoffs

Thanks to Peter for his report:-

Despite pressure from Alex and having at one point been down to 7 seconds on the clock for all remaining moves Toby held out for a draw in a pawn and minor piece ending to clinch a place in Division 1, having won last week.

James, playing white against Mike in their first play off, had sustained pressure, chasing Mike’s King up the board and delivering a neat check mate by the Queen, I think from her starting square. They will play the second game on 11 July.

Division 2 playoffs

Toby Cox drew first blood by beating Alex Taylor last night. The return tie, when Toby will have the White pieces, will be played next week, as will the first tie of the James Gardner v Mike Botteley playoff.

A place in division 1 next season awaits the victors.

Bedford Championship decider

In a thrilling final game Steve Ledger needed only to draw with Richard Bodily to clinch the Bedford Chess Club Championship.  After missing a good line in the middle game Steve found himself in a losing endgame. As usual he defended stoutly and in the end it was the clock that forced Richard to repeat moves and agree a draw. Preliminary analysis by Fritz strongly suggests that Richard maintained a winning advantage right to the end, but the correct line from the final position involves a bold piece sacrifice to force through the K-side united passed pawns.
After the game Chairman Paul Habershon took the opportunity to present the trophy to Steve who will be unable to attend the AGM.

Division 1 gets interesting.

Two big games in Division 1 last night saw Nick draw with Richard and Marc draw with Robert. With only 3 games to go, Steve Ledger looks favourite but Richard or Marc could still take the trophy.

Marc and Robert share an interesting game :