Oxfordshire Chess- News

News from 2016-17 for Oxfordshire Chess

News from other years: 2015 2014 2013 2012 2010 2008 2007 2006 2005

04 Apr 2017

George Spalding

Frank Wood Shield Semifinals

Thanks to all teams who cleared Round 3,  the semi-finals of 
this season's Frank Wood Shield competition will be 
contested as follows

Oxford City 1   v University 1
MCS/B1 v  Witney 1

These teams should find mutually acceptable dates to clear these 
ties, desirably without disturbing any League fixtures 
arranged by the Fixtures Secretary. 

George Spalding

02 Apr 2017

Andrew Varney

Oxon U11 girls team

Oxfordshire Under 11 Girls team recently competed in the EPSCA final. 
This took place on the same weekend, and at the same venue, that 
Oxfordshire were winning the Under 14 Minor section of the SCCU Junior 

Unfortunately the team was missing a fair number of the stronger 
players, but this gave a chance for others to compete at the top level 
on higher boards, and others who would otherwise have been in the 
reserves tournament to play for the main team.

The team did not come last! The results do not do justice to how close 
some of the games were, and all of the girls are to be congratulated 
for their positive team spirit. Over half the team's points came from 
strong performances from Sana Kassey on board 3 and Asha Seymour on 
board 12. Full results can be found at the link below.

Next year Oxfordshire will be hosting the EPSCA U11 girls final, and I 
am hoping that we will be able to put a bigger focus on Oxfordshire 
girls' chess in the year leading up to that.
Link: http://www.oxfordfusion.com/epsca/TeamsOverall.cfm?EventID=101
01 Apr 2017

Andrew Varney

SCCU Junior Jamboree - Oxon winners

After some teething problems with setting up teams for the Southern 
Counties Chess Union Junior Jamboree, Oxfordshire fielded a team of six 
in the U14 minor section. The event took place at Orleans School in 
Twickenham on March 26th and comprised three rounds of standard games. 
The consistent strong performance of the team earned them the first 
place and each player came home with a trophy. Well done!

Warmest thanks to everyone who entered the competition, including those 
who could not go due to insufficient numbers of players in their 

Ola Murawska (team manager)


27 Mar 2017

Stephen Rumsby

Oxford U150 Team just miss clean sweep

The County U150 didn't quite manage to win against Hampshire on 
Saturday. As I was away for this match Ray Corden kindly stepped in as 
captain. It looked to be a very close match with Hampshire winning 
11:9. Our bottom 5 boards were heavily outgraded, which swung the 
result their way. Nevertheless we still won the league overall with 10 
points. Thanks to all who played and to Ray for captaining. I hope 
everyone had an enjoyable afternoon's chess

12 Mar 2017

Andrew Varney

Oxford win EPSCA U9 south zonal!

Exciting news from David Zakarian, Oxon's EPSCA U9 team manager:

"In spite of the failure to qualify to the EPSCA finals from the South Zonal tournament last year, the Oxfordshire U9 teams recent results were quite reassuring, allowing us to speak about good chances to qualify. The results of the 2017 zonal held at Kennet School, Thatcham, proved wrong even our most optimistic predictions. In the afternoon of 11 March, while the University of Oxford was slowly but surely outplaying the Cambridge University team in the annual 135th Varsity match, the Oxfordshire U9 juniors were collecting invaluable points in their matches against opponents from 8 other counties. Eventually, after scoring 27½ out of 36 possible, Oxfordshire won the 1st place, coming 1 point ahead of the last years winner Sussex. Congratulations to all players both on the main boards and the reserves, as well as to all parents and coaches who contributed, in one way or another, to this success! It was a magnificent team effort, in which all players showed absolute determination and great perseverance!"

For results from the main tournament see the link below.

Link: http://www.oxfordfusion.com/epsca/TeamsOverall.cfm?EventID=95
12 Mar 2017

Andrew Varney

Oxfordshire events for Delancey UK Chess Challenge

The Oxfordshire Megafinal will be held on Saturday 29 April 2017 at 
Cokethorpe School. 
Entry for all players is via the UK Chess Challenge website. For primary school aged players (Under 11 on 1 September 2016), qualification via a school, club or last chance saloon tournament is required and a code will be supplied from that tournament. This year secondary school aged players may enter directly without pre- qualification. There will be a cap on the number of entries due to venue restrictions, so please do enter well before the deadline!

Players who are of proven county standard (e.g. have previously played for one of the Oxon county junior teams) may be interested in the "Ojays" (Oxfordshire Junior Squad) tournament on Sunday 19 March, which is also a qualifier for the Megafinal. Details and online entry are available on the Ojays website: http://www.oxon-junior-chess- squad.org.uk/ojays-uk-chess-challenge-megafinal-qualifier-2017.

Other junior players who have not qualified from a school tournament (either because it is not running one this year or because they were unable to accrue a sufficient number of points) may wish to enter the Oxfordshire "Last Chance Saloon" on Tuesday 11 April. An entry form is available at the link below.

Link: http://www.oxfordfusion.com/oca/documents/UKCC_last_chance_saloon_2017.pdf
09 Mar 2017

Asif Hameed

ODCL 2016-7 Fixture Lists Update

Dear All

Please see the attached link for the fixtures list , last amended on 9th
March 2017 - Please do let me know if you notice any issues.

Don't forget to refresh your browser to check the dates on the actual
document itself.


Asif Hameed
Fixtures Secretary
Link: http://www.oxfordfusion.com/oca/documents/ODCL_Authorised_Fixtures_in_Diary_Format.pdf
26 Feb 2017

Stephen Rumsby

Bucks v Oxford U150

Despite missing some of their strongest players Oxfordshire 
convincingly beat Bucks 13:7.
Nontheless, Oxford outgraded most of the opposition, but not by 
much. There were some hard fought games but Oxford gained an early 
lead and Bucks were never in a position to challenge it.
Thanks to all who turned out, I think everyone had an enjoyable 
afternoon's chess.
We have now won all our matches and with one more match to go we 
have an unassailable lead.
The results were:-
1 Driscoll, William (138,144) 0.5-0.5 Gundry, Arran K (148,149) 
2 Nataraj, Nakul (137,143)    1-0     Edwards, Derek F (146,142) 
3 Watson, Darrell A (147,140) 0-1     King, Simon E (145,152) 
4 Turner, David J (145,139)   0-1     Beckett, Richard (145,146) 
5 Hawkins, Kevin F (137,139)  1-0     Heslop, Anthony G (138,138) 
6 Rollinson, David (136,132)  0-1     Harrison, Michael (136,132) 
7 Driscoll, John (127,131)    0.5-0.5 Crofts, Joshua C (135,139) 
8 Pomerenke, Richard (126,131)0.5-0.5 Jacobs, Robert B (131,132) 
9 Edmonds, Gregory (132,131)  0-1     Burcham, AW Tony (130,130) 
10 Brown, David (127,125)     0-1     Willis, Graham (129,131) 
11 Bolduc, Eugene (122,117) 0.5-0.5   Stanley, William(128,124) 
12 Challinger, Andrew P(120,115) 0-1  Riley, Adrian K (127,130) 
13 Hill, Andrew W (116,113)   0-1     Brindley, Malcolm (127,125) 
14 Page, Charles (115,113)    1-0     Brooke, Ian R (129,118) 
15 Perez, Juan A (120,111) 0.5-0.5    Rumsby, Stephen (117,125) 
16 Boury, SE Ramesh (108,107) 0-1     Soanes, Joshua (91,95) 
17 Stothert, R Chris (101,103) 0-1    Matilal, Tamal K (88,93) 
18 Collins, Patrick (98,93) 0.5-0.5   Cordon, Ray (76,76) 
19 _walkover (-)              1-0     _default (-)
20 Page, Arthur (-)           0-1     Parnes, Shira (69,74 r) 

(ave grade 124)              7-13     (ave grade 124)

14 Feb 2017

Gerard O'Reilly

40th Annual Kidlington Chess Tournament, 4 & 5 February 2017

Back in 1978, the first Kidlington Chess Tournament was held. It had two sections (Major: U180 and Minor: U135) and offered a guaranteed minimum prize fund of £130. The event grew rapidly. For the fourth event in 1981, an Intermediate section was added, the grading limits on the sections were 190, 160 and 125, and the prize fund had grown to over £500. Two years later, in the sixth annual tournament of Kidlington, the prize fund was over £700, and the grading limits of the three sections were 225, 175 and 125.

With this year's Kidlington Chess Tournament held at Exeter Hall, Kidlington, on 4 & 5 February, the event reached a landmark 40th year and featured a number of innovations. For the first time, the top section was not grading-limited but an Open section. We also had for the first time at Kidlington the option of online entry, and we added a further prize to the bottom section. (We had added a fourth [U120] section in 2012.) Moreover, the Oxfordshire Individual Championship, resuscitated this year, was decided at Kidlington, the winner being the eligible player with the highest combined score in the Open sections of the two weekend tournaments held in Oxfordshire during the season, at Witney in October and at Kidlington.

We were surprised and delighted at the large increase in the number of entrants this time. Such was the demand that we reached the capacity of our usual playing area (192 players) nearly a week before the start of the tournament and had to close to further entries. That had not come even close to happening before in the time I have been involved in the organization of the tournament. (Before my time, it had not been entirely unknown that the figure of 192 entries had been exceeded and an extra room in the building had been hired, but hiring an extra room at the venue was not economically viable and in any case we felt that allowing more entrants would have put undesirable strain on the facilities at the venue as well as creating the danger of a degree of overcrowding which would would not be good for the atmosphere of the tournament.

Of our 192 starters, 28 were in the Open section, 57 in the U180, 47 in the U145 section, and 60 in the U120. Competitors ranged in age from 7 to 89.

As last year, we were very pleased to have Andrew Varney deputize for Priscilla as controller for the U145 section on the Saturday, joining our other regular controllers, Tim Dickinson and Lucy Smith. As usual, they all did their work in an efficient, unruffled, and friendly way.

Despite the presence of Grandmaster John Nunn and new IM Alan Merry in the Open section, as well as Oxford University's Portuguese FIDE Master David Martins and Armenian FM David Zakarian, we again had a 'home-grown' winner, with Marcus Harvey (now an FM, too) of Witney Chess Club taking clear first place and the £250 winner's prize with a score of 4.5/5. He dropped just a half-point in round 3 against Nunn, and beat David Martins in the final round. Marcus's result was a repeat of his clear victory in 2015. (He also shared first place back in 2013.) John Nunn and David Martins, along with former Oxford University player Michael Healey, shared second place. Of those who finished a point further back on 3 in equal fifth place, Ben Ogunshola and David Coleman qualify for places in the 2017 British Championship at Llandudno this summer.

The Oxfordshire Individual Championship title and trophy go to Oxford University's David Zakarian, who, despite being unable to play the last round at Kidlington because of duties supervising the Oxfordshire Under-9 team, added to his score in the Open section at Witney to win the Championship with 5.5 points. Zoe Varney came second with a combined total of five points. (Marcus Harvey had been unable to play at Witney.)

Zoe's brother Daniel Varney, of Cumnor Chess Club, deservedly took clear top spot in the U180 section with a score of 4.5/5, a half-point ahead of visitors Peter Tart and Paul Colburn and of Cowley's Will Burt and Oxford City's Anthony Lee.

The U145 section produced a five-way tie for first place, shared by Berkshire players Michael Lucey and George Green, Camberley's Paul Gillett, and two Oxfordshire players, Steve Barry (who mostly plays tournaments rather than in the Oxfordshire League) and Cowley's Bob Samuels, all of them on 4/5.

In the U120 section, there was a seven-way tie for first place on 4/5, between James Barnett, Dominic De Silva, Paul Bristow, Jason Madden, Roy Watson, and two juniors, Gloucestersire's Oliver Stubbs and Berkshire junior Helen Archer-Lock, who thereby went one better than her shared second place in the section last year.

For a complete list of prizewinners and the crosstables for the four sections, please consult the other pages under the '2017' tab on the Kidlington chess tournament website. You may also wish to look at the fine selection of photos from this year's event taken by Brendan O'Gorman (who shared the U160 grading prize in the U180 section), which he has posted online here. My thanks to him.

As usual, Andrew Butterworth of Chess Direct provided the excellent bookstall as well as the boards and sets and a good number of the clocks we used, and we are pleased that Helen Hackett (Hackett's Food & Drink of Witney) was again able to provide us with the fine selection of refreshments. My thanks to them both.

A tournament organizer relies on many other people in a variety of ways to make things happen and to run smoothly, and it is a pleasure to thank them. In addition to the section controllers, and Andrew Butterworth and Helen Hackett (already mentioned), I would like to add my thanks to the staff at Exeter Hall (especially Bert) and to Ian Brooke and, especially this year, to Tom Williams.

After reaching the milestone of 40 years of the Kidlington Tournament this year, it's worth reflecting on and giving thanks for the efforts of those who started the whole thing off four decades ago (some at Kidlington this year played in the first event back in 1978!), and all those who through the years have worked hard and made contributions in different ways to keep the tournament going and growing. I single out Tom, not to downplay the vital roles that many other have played over the years, but because, having been among those who started the tournament up four decades ago, he is now standing down after forty years at the heart of the organization in various capacities. In recent years he has been Treasurer--though that title does scant justice to the contribution he has continued to make. In learning the ropes, since I came into the Kidlington organizing team in 2010, I have relied heavily on Tom, not only for his work as Treasurer and more, but also for his sound advice, encouragement, practical support and friendship. So a very special 'Thank you' to Tom.

Finally, my thanks go to all the 192 players who competed at this years Kidlington, and to those who made donations to our funds (vital to our long-term survival and to our support for local chess).

This year, we reached a milestone: the 40th annual Kidlington Chess Tournament. Next year, as we move into our fifth decade, we celebrate another 40th anniversary. The 41st annual Kidlington Chess Tournament, taking place on Saturday and Sunday 4 & 5 February 2018, will be the fortieth to be held at Exeter Hall. We look forward not only to welcoming back old chess friends but also to making new ones. Do join us there!

Gerard O'Reilly (14 February 2017)

Link: https://kidlingtonchess.org.uk/
11 Feb 2017

Andrew Varney

Oxon Junior tournament results

The full results for the Oxon Junior tournament held on 7-8 January 
2017 are available on the results section of this website. The 2016-17 
season champions are:

Under 18        Zoe Varney               
Under 15        Elizaveta Sheremetyeva  
Under 13        Bill Read       
Under 11        Ben Aubury & Dimitrios Zakarian (equal on tie-breaks)
Under 9         Ivan Chetverikov

Under 18 School   Cherwell
Under 11 School   St Joseph's* (on tie-break)
* clock prize awarded to MCS as St Joseph's were winners previous season.

Link: http://www.oxfordfusion.com/oca/GetTournamentResults.cfm
11 Feb 2017

Andrew Varney

Oxon U9 team inter-county friendly results

On Sunday 5 February, David Zakarian left the Kidlington Congress a round early in order to manage an Oxon Under 9 team in an inter- county match in Newbury.

After the match David wrote:

"Oxfordshire Junior U9 team had a wonderful tournament, coming second out of eight teams in the overall standings. Congratulations to all the players! Every single member of the team contributed to this success and I hope they all have learnt something from this invaluable experience. Special thanks to all the parents and guardians who dedicated one more Sunday to their childrens chess adventures!"

Full results can be found at:

Link: http://www.oxfordfusion.com/epsca/TeamsOverall.cfm?EventID=92
21 Jan 2017

Stephen Rumsby

Oxford win against Berkshire again

In the return match against Berkshire, Oxford won convincingly 
13.5:6.5. The team was little changed from the last match.
Apart from the top board and the bottom 3 boards Oxford outgraded 
their opponents. There were a few upsets, but generally Oxford 
proved the superior side and ran out an early lead which was never 
The results were :-
Nigel Dennis 148      ½-½   Gary Jackson 148
Mike Redmond 146      0-1   Arran Gundry 148
Trevor Passby 144     0-1   Ian Bush     148
Peter Tickner 143     0-1   Derek Edwards 146
George Green  141     ½-½   Asif Hameed 146
Brian Millis 140      ½-½   Simon King  145
Geoff Naidrett 135    ½-½   Richard Beckett 145
John Wanderle 130e    0-1   Raj Panicker 138
Ivor Kelly 128        0-1   Tony Heslop 138
Hamish Sloan 126      1-0   Mike Harrison 136
James Moody 122j      0-1   Joshua Crofts 135
Roy Brown 121         ½-½   Tony Burcham 130
Simon Sellick 113     1-0   Bill Stanley 128
Stephen Pitts 112     0-1   Bill Read 128j
David Skyme 111       0-1   Adrian Riley 127
Gordon Birch 109      0-1   Gary Reynolds 124
Anshul Khanderwal 95j 0-1   Steve Rumsby 117
Arjun Khanderwhal 96j 1-0   Tamal Matilal 88
Vic Ballard 94        0-1   Sidharth Panicker 24j
Orton Khoo 94j        1-0   Advaith Panicker 35j

Thanks to all who played, I think everyone had an enjoyable 
afternoon, even those who lost. A great team effort.
07 Jan 2017

Stephen Rumsby

Oxfordshire U150 Win Against Berkshire

Oxford continued their winning ways with a convincing 14:6 win over 
Berkshire. Oxford outgraded their opponents on nearly every board.
The results were :-
 1. Gary Jackson     148   1:0   Nigel Dennis 149
 2. Ian Bush         148   1:0   Nikhil Kadambadi 147
 3. Arran Gundry     148   1:0   Mike Redmond     146
 4. Derek Edwards    146   0:1   Peter Tickner   143
 5. Asif Hameed      146   0:1   George Green    141
 6. Simon King       145   1:0   default
 7. Richard Beckett  145   1:0   John Wunderle 135
 8. Roly Piggott     144   1:0   Ivor Kelly  128
 9. Raj Panicker     138   1:0   Hamish Sloan 126
10. Tony Heslop      138 0.5:0.5 James Moody 122
11. Michael Harrison 136 0.5:0.5 Roy Brown  121
12. Robert Jacobs    131 0.5:0.5 Witek Koreywo 119
13. Tony Burcham     130   1:0   Gareth Ward 119
14. Adrian Riley     127   1:0   Simon Sellick 113
15. Anthony Fox      122 0.5:0.5 Stephen Pitts 112
16. Mark Creasey     129   1:0   David Skyrme 111
17. Steve Rumsby     117   1:0   Vic Ballard 84
18. Oliver Graham     97   1:0   Ashul Khandewal 95
19. Max Lawson      u/g    0:1   Orton Khoo 94
20. default                0:1   Arjun Khandewal 76

Thanks to everyone who played, to Simon for his help and all who 
helped set up and clear away. I think everyone had an enjoyable 
afternoon's chess.
The next match is on the 21st January and is away to Berks.
I will be emailing players to see who wants to play in the next day 
or so. If you don't get an email but would like to play then 
email me (stephen.rumsby@maidford.plus.com)


27 Dec 2016

Andrew Varney

Oxfordshire Junior county teams

At the end of November, Oxfordshire took part in a four county invitational tournament hosted by Warwickshire and including Leicestershire and Northamptonshire. There were three sections: Under 11, Under 9 and Under 11 girls. The teams were for 8 players in each of the open sections and 4 in the girls. Oxfordshire performed well and came home with the shields for the Under 11 and Under 11 girls sections. There were also medals presented to all of the winning team members. Full results can be found at chess-results.com.

In the Spring there will be further inter-county tournaments with larger teams (e.g. the EPSCA U11 zonal on 18 March is for 16-20 players and U9 and U11 girls are for 12 players).

The main route to be selected for one of these teams is to play in the Oxfordshire junior county team trials which are taking place on 7th  8th January 2017. Further information is on the entry form available here but you can enter online via the link "Ojays" website. Please note that entries and payments received after 4 January incur an additional late fee.

26 Dec 2016

Asif Hameed

ODCL 2016-17 Fixture Lists (amended 25 12 2016)

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all!

Please see the attached link for the fixtures list as authorised on 26th December 2016.


Asif Hameed
Fixtures Secretary

Link: documents/ODCL_Authorised_Fixtures_in_Diary_Format.pdf
10 Dec 2016

Gerard O'Reilly

Cowley Christmas Blitz 2016

The Cowley Christmas Blitz, held on Monday 5 December, attracted an excellent total of 62 participants, the highest number for many years.

The tournament resulted in a tie on 9 points from 10 games between Daniel Varney (Cumnor) and Cowley's Will Burt, with Daniel taking first prize on the tie-breaking system. Third and fourth place respectively (again separated only on tie-break) were Cowley's Rich Weston and Mike Handley. Congratulations to them and the other prizewinners!

The full list of prizewinners is as follows:

1st: Daniel Varney (Cumnor) 9/10
2nd: Will Burt (Cowley) 9
3rd: Rich Weston (Cowley) 8
4th: Michael Handley (Cowley) 8
Best Cowley player: Maria Mate 7.5
Best visitor: Dan Rowan (Banbury) 7.5
Best junior (U18): Hari Selvaraj (MCS/Blackbirds) 5
Best lady: Jasmine Burgess (Cowley)) 4.5
Best U165: Ian Bush (MCS/Blackbirds) 7.5
Best Cowley U155: Bob Waugh 7
Best visitor U155: Kelly Riley (Cowley Workers) 6.5
Best U14: Bill Read (Witney) 5
Best U145: Tamal Matilal (Cowley Workers) 5.5
Best U130: Billy McCauley (-) 5
Best ungraded: Jim Vincent (-) 5
Best U12: Jenith Wiratunga (Cowley) 4
Best U10: David Kardashyan (William Fletcher Primary Sch.)2
Best slow starter - 0/2: Domas Druzas (Didcot) 5
Best very slow starter - 0/4: Hakeem Asif (Cowley) 4

The draw for the Frank Wood Shield was also held before the final round of the Blitz.

Our thanks go to everyone who helped make the event a success, especially:
Rose Hill Methodist Church for allowing us the use of the downstairs Hall for the event;
the Kidlington Chess Tournament for the loan of equipment;
those who kindly donated prizes for the event or made donations to the Lester Millin Memorial Fund;
John Taylor and Dave Robson, for help with the transporting of equipment;
Will Burt, for help with setting up the hall and taking entries on the door;
the many people who helped clear up afterwards;
and, especially, our controllers Tim Dickinson and Priscilla Morris, for their usual calm and efficient running of the event.

Gerard O'Reilly (10 December 2016)

02 Dec 2016

Andrew Varney

Oxfordshire Junior Chess Tournament 2016-17

Entries are now being received for the 2016-17 season Oxfordshire Junior 
(U13, U15, U18) Chess Tournament. The tournament is taking place on the 
weekend of 7-8 January 2017 at Cumnor Primary School. It is a Standard 
Play tournament open to all those under 18 on 1 September 2016 affiliated 
to Oxfordshire by residence, school or chess club membership or by birth.

There is significant prize money (at least £175) and prestigious titles 
and trophies to compete for. 

The tournament will also be incorporating the Oxfordshire Secondary 
Schools individual competition (top school wins an engraved chess clock 
based on top 4 scoring players from each school represented).
Link: documents/Oxon_2016-2017_U18.pdf
07 Aug 2016

Andrew Varney

Oxon players qualify for next stage of UK Chess Challenge 2016

The Oxon Megafinal of the UK Chess Challenge at the end of April 
attracted an equal record number of entries with that in 2014. 
Of the approximately 250 participants, 77 qualified for the Southern 
Gigafinal, the penultimate stage of the UK Chess Challenge. 

Together with a few other Oxon Juniors who qualified from other 
counties' Megafinals, most of these took up the challenge to play in 
the Gigafinal on July 16th/17th weekend. 
Altogether I counted 60 Oxon Juniors playing on the Saturday or 
Qualifying from this event were 14 to the last stage Standard Play 
Terafinal tournament to be held on 20th/21st August. 
Over half of these are girls, underlining Oxfordshire's tradition of 
producing some of the country's top female chess players. 
A further 16 players, not quite making the Terafinal, qualified to 
in the Rapid Play Silver Plate tournament to be held in September. 

Congratulations to all those who took part in the Gigafinal and 
especially to those who have proceeded to the final stages of the 
competition to whom we wish the best of luck.
Link: documents/Qualifiers_from_SGigafinal_2016.pdf