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News from 2008-09 for Oxfordshire Chess

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07 Apr 2009

Heather Lang

Oxon U11 girls in EPSCA final

This year's Oxon U11 Girls team was weakened because of a number of players in the main U11 squad having prior commitments, and an unfortunate withdrawal of our original board 2 on the day due to illness. Nevertheless, 14 (of the 29 invited) took the trip to Bolton, and after round 1 were elated at being 1st= with 8.5/12, despite being on the wrong end of a couple of snap checkmates from good positions.

In rounds 2 and 3 however, many of the players in the lower half of the team found the going a lot tougher as Oxon gradually slipped down the leaderboard to a rather unflattering 7th position - despite being only 3.5 points away from the bronze medals. Meanwhile, Kent and Wey Valley had gone into overdrive, with the performance of the day being Kent's 12/12 in round 2 that ultimately won them the trophy.

Everyone in the Oxon team tried their best, wrote down their games (even those who had little experience of doing so) and showed each other their games in the team room between the rounds. Although round 1 turned out to be the high point in terms of overall placings, the girls still achieved the main aim of the day - to enjoy playing chess for the County and supporting each other as a team.

Unofficial Oxon 'high scorer' prizes went to everyone who scored 2 points or more, and the 'Oxon game of the day' prize was awarded to Katherine Klemperer for her last round win where she turned down a draw while a pawn down against last year's Southern Gigafinal winner, seeing that she could win the material back and play on for more in an ending.

Oxon scores

 1. Anna Wang            2.5/3
 2. Katherine Klemperer  2.5
 3. Ruth Friedlander     2
 4. Irene Mathias        1
 5. Tiyash Banerjee      1.5
 6. Florence Marsden     2
 7. Siobhan Bridson      0
 8. Claudia Macey-Dare   2
 9. Susana Bennett-Anton 2
10. Angel Jin            1.5
11. Olivia Berezny       1
12. Lauren Menzel        1

 R. Leena Abedin         1.5
 R. Chloe D'Souza-Eva    0
 

Overall placings

 
 1. Kent         28	
 2. Wey Valley   26½	
 3. Manchester   22½	
 4. Nottingham   21½	
 5. Liverpool    20½	
 6. Sussex       20	
 7. Oxfordshire  19	
 8. Oldham       16	
 9. Barnet       14½	
10. Berkshire    12½	
11. Yorkshire    10	
12. Lincolnshire  4


30 Jan 2009

Heather Lang

Chess on BBC Radio Oxford

Peter McLeod and Heather Lang were both interviewed on the BBC Radio Oxford Breakfast Show this morning. This was because of the recently-published paper "Why are (the best) women so good at chess? Participation rates and gender differences in intellectual domains" by Merim Bilalic, Kieran Smallbone, Peter McLeod and Fernand Gobet, which seems to have captured the imagination of the UK media.

By analysing grading list data from the German chess federation, the paper shows that 96% of the difference between the best men and best women chess players can be explained by the difference in participation rates - and that actually the top three German women players are stronger than they "should" be according to statistical analysis.

The chess theme ran throughout the program. At 7:59am, BBC Radio Oxford called for women who play chess to phone in, wanting to hear from at least ten before 10am. The BBC thought it was so important, they tagged it as an RDS EON Traffic Announcement to ensure maximum coverage (admittedly, this may just have been an accident). Listeners were also encouraged to phone in with suggestions of celebrities or songs that could be used to make a chess set. Once again, they did the station proud, with Andrew Castle, Elvis (the king) and the Steppenwolf song "Pawn to be Wild", among others.

The program should be available via the 'listen again' service for the next week. Peter is 49 minutes in and Heather is at around the 1h48m mark. The woman who phones in to ring her bell collection for the presenter (a few minutes after Heather's interview) is also worth listening on for.

Link: http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/p002111f/Breakfast_30_01_2009/
18 Jan 2009

Heather Lang

U11 Girls Practice match

The Oxon U11 girls had their first outing of the year on the 18th of January, in a practice match against Sussex, Berkshire and Barnet. Although several experienced players were unavailable, the nine girls who were representing Oxfordshire for the first time did really well and the team finished second behind Sussex.

Top Oxon scorers, who received scorebook prizes, were Isobel Ferry (3), Florence Marsden (2½) and Claudia Macey-Dare (2½). The Oxfordshire scores are below, and full results are available on the Berkshire website (link below).

Oxon Results

                           Sus Ber Bar
 1. Katherine Klemperer     0   0   1    1/3
 2. Tiyash Banerjee         0   1   1    2
 3. Kiko Oughton            0   1   1    2 
 4. Florence Marsden        ½   1   1    2½
 5. Qui-Yi Lim              1   0   0    1
 6. Siobhan Bridson         0   0   1    1
 7. Susana Bennett-Anton    1   1   0    2
 8. Claudia Macey-Dare      1   1   ½    2½
 9. Isobel Ferry            1   1   1    3
10. Bella Bu                0   0   ½    ½
11. Olivia Berezney         0   1   1    2
12. Daniella Duncalf        ½   0   1    1½
    Totals                  5   7   9   21/36

Overall results

 1. Sussex       23		
 2. Oxfordshire  21		 
 3. Berkshire    16½		
 4. Barnet       11½	

Link: http://www.bjca.org.uk/results.php?eid=1133
04 Nov 2008

Heather Lang

Oxfordshire Schools League U11 final 2008

Oxford High School won last season's postponed U11 league final against Magdalen College School. The match was tied until Anna Wang won the last game to finish.

2007-08 Oxfordshire Schools League Under 11 Final

Magdalen College School Oxford High School
1Nathan Sames (59)0 - 1Anna Wang (91)
2Alex Anderton (46)0.5 - 0.5Rowan White (38)
3Bryce Jones (45)1 - 0Irene Mathias (43)
4Kirill Lasis (28)0 - 1Jemima Gasson (8)
5William Massam (39)1 - 0Katherine Klemperer (12)
6Niall Devaney (36)0 - 1Ruth Friedlander (11)
2.5 - 3.5
Match played on 22 October 2008.
Oxford High School won 3.5-2.5.