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Term 2 Junior Club – Final results in Kingston

The second term of our new Junior Club kicked off enthusiastically this week with 12 juniors along for lessons and games. Meanwhile for the seniors following, it was the final round of the Kingston Memorial. Final placings are: Gordon Lyall 7/8, Stewart Holdaway and John Eccles on 5½, and Guy Burns and Ross Jackson next on 5. Final results here.

Next week is Round 1 and 2 of the Leo Eichholtz Rapid tournament, played under a 25 m + 5 s time control.

Round 7 Kingston

Gordon Lyall takes out the Kingston Memorial trophy with a round to spare and gets to hang on to the distinctive clock trophy for another year.
Match of the night was Guy Burns and John Eccles. After a close match, with both in time trouble in a knight v bishop end game and pawns of both sides of the board, it was Guy whose flag fell first. They both now share second place with Stewart, who lost to Ross, who moves to third place half a point behind. With no fewer than five players in contention for second place, next week’s final round match-ups promise for a good night of chess.
All results and standings here.

Junior Club resumes next week after the school holidays, starting at 6:30.

Round 6 Kingston

It is getting down to the business end of the Club’s annual 55m +5s Kingston Memorial tournament – competition is heating up, and several players are still in contention with 2 rounds left to play.

Game of the night in-form Guy playing his usual Queen’s Gambit beat current frontrunner Stewart with an open and attacking game (here). Top seeds Gordon and Ross agreed a draw, while John Eccles prevailed in the battle of the John’s. After six rounds, Gordon leads on 5, with Guy and Stewart sharing second place, half a point behind.

Latest results and standings can be found here.

Round 5 Kingston, upcoming Kāpiti Rapid

Round 5 this week in the 2021 Kingston Memorial. Both Stewart and Gordon had wins over Andy and Brandon respectively to extend their joint lead to 4½ from 5, David prevailed over Mike (game here), and Geoffrey over John Whibley (game here), while John Eccles and Ross agreed a draw, Ross having battled under his usual time handicap due to travel. With 3 rounds to go, current results and standings can be found here.

This week’s photo: 30 years ago this month in April 1991, the Club ran its first open Kāpiti Rapid tournament. You may recognise a couple of the faces in there, who, between them have won at least half of the 26 times the tournament has been held since then (see a history of  this annual tournament here). This year’s Kāpiti Rapid is coming up fast on the 29th May, and will be held again at the Club rooms in Paraparaumu. Last year, we had one of our highest turnouts, and this year promises to be even better. Check out the details and how to enter here. Hope to see you there!

GM Gawain Jones visits Club, Fischer Random night, and North Island Champs

It was fantastic to have a visit to the Club this week from GM Gawain Jones and his family. With a current FIDE rating of 2670, Gawain is amongst the top 70 current players in the World. He comes fresh from another picket fence performance on his current trip to New Zealand, taking out the North Island Championship last weekend in Wellington. Here he is seen with his wife, WIM Sue Maroroa, and Wellington Club President and Kāpiti member Ross Jackson – teaching baby Jones some essential early life skills.

In addition to Gawain, four Kāpiti Club members and some 87 other Chess players all congregated at the Naumi Hotel in Cuba Street, Wellington over Easter weekend for the North Island Championship. This was a huge turnout played over a single grade, with some 13 FIDE titled players, 5 current and past NZ champions, and a median tournament rating over 1800. It was great weekend, with the famous Cuba Street buzz  adding to the occasion. While not amongst any prizes, Kāpiti players (Stewart Holdaway, David Scott, Ross Jackson and Geoffrey Gunawan), still held their own against the competition. For a full report on the event, including links to games, see here and here.  Photo: Geoffrey appears to provides his opponent with some amusement with his Round 5 opening choice. 1. e4 e5 2. Ke2.

Meanwhile, we took a break from serious chess this week, to try our first ever night of Fischer Random chess. Every board for each round started with the same randomised starting position, and it was fascinating to see how differently opening strategy and games diverged on each board. It was an interesting and fun night for most, as the strange starting positions threw memory of openings away and challenged players to rely more on first principles. For some, it did not always pay off, as the victim of this incredible four-way fork found out.

More photos can be found here.

Half-way stage in Kingston

This week saw Round 4 played in the Kingston Memorial. At the half-way stage, Gordon Lyall and Stewart Holdaway are neck and neck on 3.5, with Guy Burns following close behind 3, after snaffling a win against Mike O’Rorke. While Gordon had a good win over David Scott, John Eccles might consider himself a little unlucky to let a possible win slip away from him near the death against Stewart.  Latest results and standings here.

John, playing white, with less than 2 minutes left, has the move against Stewart with 59 seconds left. How should white play to win this endgame?

Meanwhile, the new Junior Club night continues to be going well with around a dozen keen juniors and parents along each week for lessons and games.


Next week, Fischer Random comes to town! The club takes a break from standard to play its first ever Fischer Random night. It should be fun. Here’s a good link to find out more about this fun variant.

Junior Chess and Round 2 of Kingston

Round 2 of the Kingston Memorial tournament this week. The Kingston family were involved for a long time with the Club. Rose Kingston served as Club Secretary continuously for 22 years from 1997 up to her death in 2018. After two rounds, Guy Burns leads outright on 2 points. Gordon Lyall and Stewart Holdaway battled a hard fought draw, and sit in second place, along with David Scott on 1.5. Current standings can be found here.

Meanwhile, the new Junior Club seems to be going well. There was a noticeable increase in the number of kids and parents along for this the second week of the Club, and quite a buzz of training and games.  The earlier time, and kid zone friendly environment seem to have hit a mark, suggesting a good level of interest in the community, and promising well for the the future.

Good turnout for new Kāpiti Junior Chess night

The first ever meeting of the Kāpiti Junior Chess Club was held this week. Around a dozen kids and parents, from age 6 and up, came along, with games, and interactive lessons with the Club’s current best player and President, Gordon Lyall. From the response to this first night, there seems to be good interest in the community, and hopefully this promises well for the Club’s objective of growing junior chess in Kāpiti. The Junior Club runs Tuesdays during school terms, from 6:30 to 7:30 pm, and is open to all primary and secondary school students. There’s a focus on fun games and events, coupled with structured opportunities to learn and improve from experts, and pathways to compete at higher levels for those that want to.  

What’s more, the first term for 2021 is free! Check out this poster for more details, and feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

For the main Club night, this week saw Round 1 of the annual Kingston Memorial tournament, played under a 55m+5s time format.  Most games went the way of the higher-rated player, except Guy Burns had a nice win over Ross Jackson, while David Scott and Brandon Holman played out a tight and even draw. See results here, and the Lyall v Eccles game here.

Check out more Club photos here, including some photos from the Junior Club night.

AGM, and new Junior Club!

The Club held its Annual General Meeting this week. Gordon Lyall was re-elected as Club President, David Scott as Club Captain and Secretary, and Brandon Holman as Treasurer. Annual fees for 2021 were set (see here), including a reduction for adult members. The Club’s rules written back in 1990 were also given a nice 2020’s refresh. All reports from the AGM can be found here.

We are also excited and pleased to announce a new Junior Chess Club for Kāpiti. This initiative is aimed to encourage and grow junior chess in the Kāpiti region. The Junior Club will start earlier than the main Club and run during school terms, and is open to all primary and secondary school students. There’s a focus on fun games and events, coupled with structured opportunities to learn and improve from experts, and pathways to compete at higher levels for those that want to.  The new Club will start next week. Check out the poster for more details, and feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

Finally, we will be back to over the board Chess next week (assuming we remain at Covid Alert Level 1 in this part of the country). We start Round 1 of our Kingston Memorial (played at 55m+5s). Members and visitors welcome.

Week 2 of the Freebird

Back to over the board this week with Rounds 5 to 8 of the popular Freebird tournament, played with a 10m + 5s time format. After 8 rounds, Gordon Lyall wins this first leg of the tournament on 7 points, followed by Geoffrey Gunawan on 6.5, and Stewart Holdaway on 6. The full cross table of results can be found here. The second and final leg of the Freebird will be played in June. Next week we will hold our AGM, and the week after that we will begin the also popular Kington Memorial tournament. Check here for the full calendar of events planned for the year. If you live locally, and are interested in playing, come and check us out. We cater to all levels.