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Chess Trivia—Part Two:   Chess grandmaster admits to cheating

From the archives

The Kapiti Chess Club is now in its 35th year since its beginnings back in 1984, so we thought it might be interesting to look back to some of its earlier days.

It is also an opportunity to recognize our longest standing member, John Whibley, who has been a regular Club member for over 30 of those years. Exactly how many he can’t quite be sure, but a pretty impressive record. Here is a photo from 25 years ago – the 1994 Club prize giving at Kapiti College, where the Club met at the time. Although John admits he can “hardly recognize the handsome young man in the white shirt”, it shows  him as co-winner of the Leo Eichholtz rapid trophy that year, along with A-grade champions,  Earl Roberts (holding the Tom Powell cup) and Alvaro Lacunza. Also shown is Bert Leggett, winner of that year’s Gufeld Trophy for winner of the C grade.

Round 2 Winter Cup Action

This week saw a good turnout along for Round 2 of the Winter Cup, boosted also by a few past and prospective members. Top boards saw last week’s winners square off. John Whibley was not able to repeat his underdog win from last week, dropping a piece to David Paul, while a typically close struggle between Guy Burns and David Scott saw the latter miscalculating a queen-exchange tactic to double his pawns and struggle into an endgame which he could not salvage the draw from. Top seeds Ross and Gordon also had wins closing up the standings for minor places after two weeks.  Full results here.

Photo: In the juniors, Savannah has a nice win over newest member Jerry to go with her bye from last week…making her 2 from 2 and current joint leader with David and Guy, and could expect a tough game next week!

Winter Cup kicks off

This week saw the start of a new club tournament the Winter Cup, being played over six weeks with a 75+30 time control. Round one saw underdogs prevail against their higher-rated opponents on the top two boards. Both Guy and John managed nice wins over the top two seeds, Gordon and Ross respectively. Ross comments “John and I exchanged bad moves but mine was blundering a piece…he missed it at first, but then having seen it, I moved to a different square that still left the tactic on!…that was the decider.” Full results from the night can be found here.

In the photo, Guy playing black, goes on from this position to win against top seed Gordon in Round one of the Winter Cup played this week. The full game can be found here, along with David Paul’s game against Brandon Holman.

Some interesting chess trivia news:  Ancient Lewis chess piece sold


North versus South return match

Some great chess match-ups this week in the return North versus South night. This to decide who are the better chess players, those from North Kapiti or those from South. After the trouncing of the South a few weeks ago, there was a bit of a comeback this week, with the South edging out the night with 5.5 to 4.5, likely helped by a little blurring of the sides in order to balance out the numbers.

Ross and Gordon fought an even battle to share a win each, while Alistair and John also proved an even match, splitting two draws each. Geoffrey played well against David to reach dominant positions out of the openings, but faltered in the middle game in both games. In the juniors, Valera had a nice win over Hamish (see game here), while Savannah played well to reach a rook and king versus king ending against Liam, but then unluckily giving away a stalemate. See full results here.

Overall, after both nights, North were comfortable winners 14.5 to 9.5. Next week sees the start of a new club tournament, the Winter Cup.

Blitz night fun

This week saw the second night in Club’s popular Blitz Cup series. Each player has 3 minutes for the game, and plays as many rounds as possible, making for an exciting and fun change from longer format  chess. Series 2 saw Gordon Lyall and David Paul take top spot with 6 points, with Neels du Plessis and Ross Jackson next on 5 points. Geoffrey Gunawan was the top junior on 4 points, with Valera Bonyushkin second on 3. Cumulative results after two series see Neels and David P leading, with Ross and Gordon following 1 point behind. Full results here. The third and final night will be played later in the year.

Last weekend three Club members, Geoffrey Gunawan, David Scott, Ross Jackson, and one past member, Lars Dobbertin-King, participated in the popular and longest running rapid tournament on the national chess calendar, the Upper Hutt Rapid. Congratulations to Geoffrey who took out third place in the C-grade, and to Lars who placed second in the B-grade. See results from the tournament  here.

Photo: Geoffrey Gunawan, third place in the Upper Hutt Rapid, C grade, 15 June 2019. 

North versus South and first NZCF Badges awarded

The important question of whether KCC players in North Kapiti are better than those in South Kapiti was tested in a fun new event this week at the Kapiti Chess Club. With Kapiti Road as the demarcation line, the club was split into two teams, paired off in roughly equal strength, to play two 25 + 5 games. The North took out the night fairly comprehensively 10 points to 4. (See results here, and a couple of games from the night here). However, this was only the first of two nights, so no bragging rights can be claimed yet, and some appeals may still be pending from the South. But overall, this was a fun, new addition to the club calendar, credit to Club Captain, David Paul. Don’t miss next match up on June 25.

Another important happening at the club this week was the awarding of the first set of NZCF badges to our junior members. This is a great NZCF initiative which seems to have gone down well. Congratulations, and now it’s on to the knight badge!

Photo: Mark Summers receives the NZCF pawn badge from Club President Gordon Lyall. Also awarded were Hamish Lester, Valera Bonyushkin, Geoffrey Gunawan and Savannah Edwards.


The 2019 Leo Eichholtz Winner

The 2019 winner of the Club’s Leo Eichholtz Board for best rapid player was decided this week.

This tournament this year was played as a series of two 8 round tournaments in a 25+5 rapid format. The series 2 winner was Ross Jackson with an unbeaten 7 from 8, followed by Gordon Lyall on 6.5 and David Paul on 6. But when combined with Series 1 results, the overall winner of the 2019 Leo Eichholtz board was Gordon Lyall on 13.5 from 16, with David Paul second on 13, and Ross Jackson third on 12.5. Congratulations.

Well done also to all the juniors that played, in particular to Geoffrey Gunawan who took out best-placed junior, and to Mark Summers who came in second.

Full results here.

And who is Leo Eichholtz? He was a founding club member when the club was established in 1984, and who donated this distinctive shaped chessboard trophy to the club for the best rapid player. It’s been played for since 1990. See previous winners  here.

The 2019 Kapiti Rapid and KCC School Tournament

 Chess in Kapiti received a big boost in the weekend with the successful running of two annual competitions.

The 2019 annual Kapiti Rapid attracted 33 competitors, one of the biggest fields in recent years for this tournament, which first started 20 years ago. It was a relatively stronger field too this year, with an average rating over 1700, and seven players rated over 2000, including current New Zealand champions, IM’s Russell Dive and Anthony Ker, plus a former NZ champion, FM Scott Wastney.

But arguably the bigger feature of the day was the successful running of the inaugural Kapiti Chess Club’s Schools Championship. This tournament is aimed at promoting and supporting Junior Chess on the Kapiti Coast and surrounding regions, and developing our players for the future. The format provides a great opportunity for school kids to compete against other juniors, on a more even and fun basis than what might happen in the main event. It’s also a chance for local schools to claim some bragging rights. This year saw 19 juniors competing from 11 schools, including a team from Levin Intermediate.

While the two tournaments were separate, they were run side by side in the same room, making for a great atmosphere and a packed hall of 52 players, plus spectators – the biggest attendance for a Chess event on the Kapiti Coast in over a decade.

The tournaments were played over six rounds in a traditional rapid format of 25 minutes with 5 seconds added per move. While the Kapiti Rapid was played as a single tournament, prizes were awarded in three grades, Open, under 2000, and under 1600.

The two tournaments featured 11 Kapiti Club players, including 4 juniors playing the school tournament, and 7 playing the Kapiti Rapid. Big congratulations to club member Hamish Lester who took out the college division individual prize in the School tournament with an impressive 5 from 6. Congratulations also to Mark Summers who took out the bronze medal in the 11-12 age group. In the main event, congratulations too to club members Brandon Holman and Neels Du Plessis who took out a share of first place in the under 1600 grade.

Special thanks to chief tournament organiser and Club President Gordon Lyall for managing the planning and running of the day, and for directing the play for the School event. A special mention also to Club Captain David Paul for directing play for the main Rapid event, while also managing to play in it. Also to Lars Dobbertin-King for bringing a team down from Levin and helping look after the school competition.

Congratulations to the prize winners below, in particular to Kapiti College for taking out the School Championship.

To see photos of the day, click here.
To see some of the games played, click here.

FM Scott Wastney, Winner of the 2019 Kapiti Rapid with Club President Gordon Lyall, and Club Captain David Paul alongside.

Kapiti College, winner of the inaugural Kapiti Chess Club School Tournament: Tim Pringle, Noah Corbett, Blake Toloa Hewitt, Elliot Rennison with Jacob Wirangi (Teacher) holding the cup.

From left to right: Hamish Lester, winner of the college division; Zac Li and Ben Guo, winners of the 11-12 division;  Sravya Moparthi, winner of the under 11 division.

2019 Kapiti Rapid winners

First:  FM Scott Wastney (5.5/6)
Second: Romie Guerra (5/6)
Third: IM Russell Dive, Brian Nijman (5/6)
Under 2000 grade: Bill Forster, Edward Tanoi, Michael Sole, Ryan Winter (5/6)
Under 1600 grade:  Brandon Holman, Jacob Wirangi, Michael Ashe, Neels Du Plessis, Paul He (3/6)
Flora Paul Memorial Trophy (for best Kapiti Chess Club player): Guy Burns and David Paul


2019 Kapiti Chess Club School Championship winners

Individual Results

Age group Medal Name Score (from 6)
13 and over Gold Hamish Lester 5
  Silver  Nathan Price                     4
    Noah Corbett   4
    Blake Toloa Hewitt          4
    Tim Pringle                       4
11-12 Gold Zac Li                                  5
    Ben Guo                             5
  Bronze Mark Summers 3
Under 11 Gold Sravya Moparthi             3.5
  Silver Raymond Guo                 3
    Marcus Chen                     3
  Bronze Max Wang 2

School Team Results

First Kapiti College 13
Second Hutt Intermediate 10
Third Paraparaumu College 9