County Teams

U140's first victory

Andrew Wilson 11 Nov 2018

The U140’s secured their first win in their debut season against a resilient Staffordshire side.

Despite having a grading edge, Leics found it tough going, quickly going behind. Julian Tang put in another star performance with his third county win in a row, getting Leics back to level terms. However, the advantage quickly turned back to Staffs. Despite wins for team debutants George Worrow-Goodin, Gijs Kruitsbosch, Trevor Woods and Harry Kershaw, plus Ian Farquharson, Leics trailed throughout the first 3 ½ hours of the match. With just the top two boards to be decided, Leics were down 6 ½ -7 ½ but wins in quick succession from Jim Bingham and Andrew Wilson sealed the victory.


Leics U120s hold Warks to a draw

Paul Mottram 07 Nov 2018

Despite having given Worcs an 8 - 4 drubbing in their opening match,
Warks beefed up their higher boards for our match at Greenlands Chess Club on 3rd November.
However, we too put out a stronger side than the one which lost to Derbyshire a fortnight earlier and
the net result was a close contest throughout.

Julian Tang put Leics ahead in only 75 mins and we hung onto that 1 point lead
until at 4 -5 in our favour, Thomas Blay pulled off a vital win
from a very tight looking game, to open up a 6-4 advantage.

Unfortunately, by that stage both Peter Hickman and I were hanging on
and the match duly ended when i conceded my game at 4.45pm.

George Worrow-Goodin, Mike Griffiths and David Gamble were the other winners,
with draws from Richard Davis and Jason Lv.

Along with Notts, Warks are always a team to beat,
so this was a decent result for us.

Report by John Oliver


U140 team beaten on debut

Andrew Wilson 28 Oct 2018

Leicestershire newly formed U140 had their first county championship outing on 27 October against Worcestershire.

An early victory for Julian Tang got matters off to a good start but the scoreboard soon moved against Leicestershire, with only John Oliver able to claim victory in all of the remaining 15 boards.

Whilst the final score of 5 ½ - 10 ½ proved to be convincing, this was not wholly reflective of play and could have been very different with a couple of reversals. Les Corlett and Milly Kotecha created superior positions before falling victim to tactics, whilst John Manger was caught out when a promising attack became overextended. The pick of a number of draws were Bob Collins and Nick Wyld who were both at the wrong end of passed pawns. Bob came back with some aggressive counter play which forced his opponent to resort to a perpetual check whereas Nick set up an impenetrable blockade for the enemy king to save the day.

The final scoresheet can be found at:

Leicestershire U120 Team Lose to Derby

Paul Mottram 28 Oct 2018

After reaching the National Semi-Finals this year, it was a bit of a wake up call
to lose the new season's opening U120 fixture away to Derbyshire.

An early win went in favour of Derbyshire and quite soon we were 4 - 1 down.
Derby held on to this 3 point lead and with 2 games to still to finish, it was 6.5 - 3.5.

A late Leicester flourish, with a draw from Julian Tang and a win by captain Paul Mottram,
meant a fairly respectable final scoreline of 7 - 5 in favour of Derby.
Trevor Woods and David Gamble provided the only 2 other wins for leics.

It is well to remember that we lost the opening match of this campaign last year and
also, a number of prominent players are no longer eligible to play in the side.

Report by John Oliver


Fixtures 2018-2019

Paul Mottram 16 Sep 2018

In 2018/19 Leicestershire will have teams in the Open, U140s, U120s, U100s in the Midland Championships. Please contact the relevant Team Captains if you would like to represent your County


20th Oct: U120 Derby V Leics
27th Oct: U140 Leics V Worcs
3rd Nov: U120 Warks V Leics
10th Nov: U140 Staffs V Leics
17th Nov: U100 Leics V Warks
24th Nov: U140 Derby V Leics
8th Dec: U140 Leics V Lincs
8th Dec: U100 Notts V Leics


5th Jan: Open Leics V Warks
19th Jan: Open Lincs V Leics
19th Jan: U140 Warks V Leics
26th Jan: U100 Leics V Staffs
2nd Feb: U120 Notts V Leics
16th Feb: U120 Leics V Worcs
23rd Feb: U140 Leics V Notts
2nd Mar: Open Notts V Leics
9th Mar: U120 Leics V Staffs
23rd Mar: Open Leics V Worcs

U100 beat Lancashire to retain National Title

Paul Mottram 10 Jul 2018

The U100 team achieved a stunning result in coming from behind to beat Lancashire 7-5 in the National U100 final at the Trident Centre, Warwick on Saturday 7th July.

Andrew Wilson, the captain writes:

'The manner of victory made it extra special having been 4-0 down after an hour or so.

Lancashire were offering us draws thereafter, which would perhaps usually have been taken but everyone was mindful of the match situation and dug in and played for the win. We then went on to win 7 of the remaining 8 boards to come out 7-5 victors.

With 3 boards to play we were 4-5 down with John Oliver, Anika Khare and Sean Mcdonald still in action. Sean and Anika's positions looked won although both required careful and steady conversion of pawn majorities, whilst John’s position appeared quite equal on material and positionally.

At this stage there was the prospect of it going to board count, which we would have won on provided Anika won her game plus one of either John or Sean. John then won with a pawn breakthrough meaning it was all down to Anika's game. By this time she had linked passed pawns and it was only a matter of time until her opponent conceded.

Sean played on under pressure unaware of the match result. Strictly speaking his opponent should have been defaulted for asking a colleague the match score and the arbiter would have done this had Sean insisted. However he didn't want to win that way and to top off the day Sean won through to end up at 7-5.

Trophy retained!'


U120 team lose to Norfolk in close National Semi Final

Paul Mottram 11 Jun 2018

The U120 team suffered a narrow 5.5-6.5 defeat at the hands of Norfolk in the National U120 Semifinal at Wisbech on Sunday 10th June.

In truth it never really looked like being a Leicestershire win as the team was always a little behind and and with 2 matches remaining Norfolk were poised to win with the match score on 6-4. However all was not quite lost as Vijay Gulab then pulled off a win in the penultimate match leaving Les Corlett the unenviable task of having to pull off a win from very much a drawn looking endgame with equal pawns and opposite colour bishops on the board. A win would have won Leicestershire the match as the board count situation was in our favour, however Les's opponent remained unflustered and no progress could be made to force a win.

Although it would have been a fairy tale ending for the U120 team, in it's debut season, to join their U100 brethren in the National Final, it's still been an excellently consistent year for the team. There's a Midland title in the bag and 5 wins out of 8 matches in total at an average of 7pts (out of 12) a match is not to be sniffed at. The three losses have always been by small margins (2 by a single point and the worst result was a 2 point defeat to Notts).

Les Corlett (6.5/8) and Andrew Wilson (4.5/5), both U100 stalwarts as well, have been unbeaten this season and George Worrow-Goodin has also excelled with 6pts from 8 matches.


Season Summary

U100 team through to National Final

Paul Mottram 11 Jun 2018

The U100 team have advanced to the National Final for the 2nd year in succession and will have a chance to retain their title if they beat Lancashire on the 7th July. Surprisingly Surrey, were unable to raise a team for the semifinal and so defaulted the entire match to Leicestershire.

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


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.


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.


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.