County Teams

U100 team beat Notts to reach National Semi-final

Paul Mottram 20 May 2018

John Oliver reports: Having beaten Notts 7.5 - 4.5, on the way to the Midlands title, it was a bit disappointing to meet up with them again in the National 1/4 Final, but at least it meant a home venue at Thurmaston and on a warm, sunny afternoon, forsaking the royal wedding, we were fairly confident of beating Notts again. This time however, it turned out to be a very close match.

After an early drawn game, Leics quickly lost a game to put Notts ahead and it was a struggle thereafter, until Leics finally managed to pull level at 5 all, after which it was long wait until it went 6 - 5 in our favour. Yet again, it left Andrew Wilson in at the death and his drawn game clinched the match decisively at 6.5 - 5.5, although had he lost, we would still have gone through on board count. Success breeds success for the U100 team! Wins came courtesy of Les Corlett, Mick Adams, Andy Carter, Sean McDonald and Brian Wood

Scoresheet

U120 Team win against Surrey to reach National Semifinal

Paul Mottram 14 May 2018

The U120 team had a convincing 8.5-3.5 win against Surrey in the National County Team Quarterfinal at a neutral venue at Brogborough on Saturday 12th May.

Surrey lost their top board before the match even started as it came to light that the player concerned was ungraded and without an ECF approved estimated grade. As this all happened the previous evening they proved unable to find a replacement despite their indication that they thought they had got one, which frustratingly resulted in a wasted journey for John Oliver. As for the match, Leicestershire quickly built up a 2 point lead which was extended markedly as a flurry wins came from some of the later matches to finish. Michael Busby, Nick Wyld, Andrew Wilson, George Worrow-Goodin, Granville Hill, Vijay Gulab and Mike Griffiths all chalked up victories. Leicestershire's Semifinal opponents in early June will be Norfolk.

Scoresheet

Leicestershire U120s are Midland Counties Champions

John Oliver 26 Mar 2018

Leicestershire U120's are the Midland Counties Champions, after beating Derbyshire on Saturday 24th March.

A tough match was anticipated and that's exactly how it turned out. Derbyshire notched up the first win, which was soon matched by a Leicestershire win and that's how it continued, neck and neck all the way, until the score reached 5 - 5. Then, with 2 games left to finish, Andrew Wilson, once again, produced another fine win, after which captain Paul Mottram's opponent, a pawn down, and seemingly oblivious to the delicate match position agreed a draw. Final score 6½ - 5½ to Leicestershire and the win was enough to secure the Midlands title. Lincolnshire could have finished level with us on 8pts, had they beaten Nottinghamshire, but in a bizarre twist of fate, didn't bring any boards to their match, which was subsequently declared void.
Over the six U120 matches, 2 of our players did exceptionally well, Les Corlett with 5 wins and 1 draw and George Worrow-Goodin (last year's Junior Team Player of the Year) with 4 wins and 2 draws.
Currently, Leics hold 3 titles, 16/17 U100 national, 17/18 U100 Midlands and now 17/18 U120 Midlands, with both teams going forward to the 17/18 national stages.

Scoresheet

U120 Team Lose to Notts

Paul Mottram 16 Mar 2018

After the euphoria of 3 consecutive wins, our nascent U120 team went down 7 - 5 away to Nottinghamshire on Saturday 10th March. Notts quickly established a 3 - 1 lead and we were never able to bridge the gap. We did however notch up 3 wins and a draw on the top 6 boards, but unfortunately, the bottom 6 could only manage 3 draws. Losing this match has created an intriguing situation, insofar as there are now 4 teams leading on 6 points, with the remaining 3 teams on 4 points. This means there is still everything to play for in the final matches on the 24th. For more details, check out the table on the MCCU website. The scoresheet can be found below. Report by John Oliver

U120 win against Warwickshire

Paul Mottram 13 Feb 2018

The Leicestershire U120 team won their match against Warwickshire 7-5 on Saturday 10th at the junior training venue at Westleigh.

In between this match and our previous one on 13th January, Warkwickshire lost 2 matches, but still topped the table with 6 points. It was therefore going to be an important match for both sides, with the outcome unpredictable. An early win went Warkwickshire's way, after which the scores levelled out at 1½ each. With 6 games completed, just 1 point separated the two sides and with 1 game remaining, it was 6 - 5 to Leicestershire. Then, what looked like a comfortable draw for Andrew Wilson on board 4, became a frantic time scramble, resulting in a controversial finish, but critically a won game for us. Warwickshire appealed and tried to claim the game on the basis of 'interference', when acting Leicestershire captain Granville Hill supported our player, who had claimed a 3 fold repetition of the position. The MCCU Controller later ruled that it was perfectly legitimate for the Captain to be involved in such a matter and the result stood. This latest win has put Leicestershire in a very good position, with 2 matches left to play. The scoresheet can be found below. _Report by Paul Mottram and John Oliver._

County first team loses to Worcestershire

John Denton 20 Jan 2018

Leicestershire's county team lost by 8½ - 7½ away to Worcestershire on Saturday.

We were looking set for a narrow victory in a very close match where Leicestershire lead by 1 point with boards 6 and 16 to finish. On board 6, Worcestershire debutant Zbigniew Koncki (Zibby), playing Sean Sheahan, had a crazy time scramble with 20+ moves to make with only a few minutes left. He defended well and got the moves in with only a few seconds to spare. He was under pressure for the most part in a game where Sean Sheahan may have missed winning chances? Zibby then found a way to break through with an unstoppable attack on f2 forcing his opponent's King into the open where it succumbed to a Queen and Rook attack. So it was all square with only board 16 to finish. Worcestershire's Ray Collett who was a last minute substitute, was a pawn up in a tight endgame when John Mitchell's time ran out, resulting in a win for Worcestershire by the narrowest margin.

Under 120 team beats Staffordshire

Paul Mottram 19 Jan 2018

Leicestershire's Under 120 team had a very convincing 9½ - 2½ win against Staffordshire on Saturday 13th January playing away at Newcastle Under Lyme.

With a small 108 to 106 average grade advantage, in theory it should have been much closer, but always ahead we swept the top 3 boards and also the bottom 5. Having now played 3 matches out of 6, Leicestershire is competitively placed in 2nd in the table (out of 7) but now face the top placed team Warwickshire, who are unbeaten thus far, in the next match on the 10th February.

Leicestershire's Under 100 are the Midlands county champions!

John Oliver 08 Jan 2018

Leicestershire's Under 100 are the Midlands county champions, beating Warwickshire by 6½ - 5½ on Saturday.

Prior to the final group match, away to Warwickshire on Saturday 6th January, captain Neil Roberts expected his team to be outgraded and that proved to be the case on most of the bottom boards. It was an ominous sign, especially after Warwickshire took an early 2 - 0 lead, but Leicestershire fought back, with Rory Haywood scoring a crucial win on board 8. After that, it was Leicestershire winning on higher boards and Warwickshire on the lower boards. Eventually, Leicestershire were ahead 5½ - 4½, but then it became 5½ - 5½, leaving the fate of the match to be decided on board 4. Andrew Wilson was offered a draw, which he wisely turned down, before going on to outplay his opponent in a king and pawn endgame, thereby clinching not only the match, but also the Midlands title. A great day for Leicestershire chess. The final score was a win by 6½ - 5½.