Results of EPSCA Under-11 Team Championships

National Final, Haywards Heath, 8 May 2004

This was the final that very nearly wasn't. After potential venues in first Leicestershire and then Rochdale fell through, the organisers were left looking for hosts at only a few weeks' notice. Fortunately Sussex stepped into the breach -- incidentally ensuring their team's participation in the final, despite finishing a lowly 7th/8 in their zonal competition. We were quite happy, Haywards Heath being a much more accessible venue than Rochdale.

In round one the points rolled in nicely, and an eventual total of 13 / 20 put us in fourth place, close behind Sussex (16), Richmond (15) and Wey Valley (14) and with a two-point cushion to Berks and Notts on 11. Meanwhile the players on the reserve boards scored 3 / 4, which under the 'best three to score' format gave us a share of the lead. Round two was full of draws! Four in quick succession gave us 12 points: solid but not threatening the leaders who scored 15, 15 and 15 points to remain in the same order. Sussex's total of 31 already exceeded the 25 they had scored in three rounds in the qualifier, against supposedly weaker opposition! Essex (14) and Barnet (13) had good rounds, putting them on 22 and 21 points: close to us, but not uncomfortably so. Our reserves fared less well, scoring only 1.

We needed a truly excellent final round to get amongst the leaders. Another 12-point round consolidated fourth place as Essex fell away, but was never enough to overhaul Wey Valley. Sussex scored an extraordinary 18 / 20 to take the title with a convincing tally of 49 / 60, followed at a respectful distance by Richmond (45) and Wey Valley (43), then Oxfordshire on 37 clear of Barnet (34). Were the Sussex organisers feeding their team colour-coded yoghurt perhaps? Whatever the reason, the home team certainly found the recipe for success, and deserve congratulations on a great victory -- as well as hosting an excellent event.

In the reserve competition three victories gave us another perfect 3 / 3, and a total of 7.5 / 9 that put us level with two other teams. The three could not be separated by invoking the tie-break of including the fourth score, but on the second tie-break (top two scores from each round) we were second -- so the reserves came away with medals!

Fourth place (and second in the reserves) is a tremendous improvement on last year, when our U11 team failed to qualify for the final. Congratulations to all involved, particularly Adam Smith and Martin Thetford who are now proud owners of multi-coloured flashing pens for scoring 3 / 3, and to Charlie Harnden, Ben Thorne and Jennifer Collister who were unbeaten on 2. And of course to indefatigable team manager Caro Hunt, who has been working since last December (at least!) to facilitate our participation in this year's EPSCA competitions.

Individual results

Team results

3Wey Valley141514.543.5
17Cheshire & N Wales5.574.517

Individual Results

1Andrew Willis0011EssexNottinghamshireOldham
2Charlie Harnden10.512.5LiverpoolSussexDevon
3Matthew Daggitt1102SomersetBerkshireBarnet
4Larissa Cooke00.500.5KentHertfordshireRichmond
5Ben Thorne0.5112.5Cheshire & N WalesWey ValleyLiverpool
6James Foster1102LincolnshireYorkshireNottinghamshire
7Will Palmer0101SussexDevonKent
8Adam Smith1113OldhamSomersetBerkshire
9Pete Watt00.511.5HertfordshireRichmondYorkshire
10Tom Maxwell1012BarnetEssexCheshire & N Wales
11Martin Thetford1113BerkshireOldhamLincolnshire
12Tim Akinola1012DevonLiverpoolWey Valley
13Giles Harper-Donnelly0.5011.5NottinghamshireBarnetSomerset
14Georgia Stevenson1102EssexKentSussex
15Toby Hambly1102Wey ValleyCheshire & N WalesYorkshire
16Jennifer Collister10.512.5RichmondLincolnshireHertfordshire
17Ely Sandler1012LiverpoolSussexEssex
18Nathanael Cooke0112SomersetBerkshireOldham
19Nathan Soper000KentDevon
19Ramsay Weir00Hertfordshire
20Amaar Khan1102NottinghamshireWey ValleyBarnet

Reserve Competition

21Philippa Davies0101
22Ramsay Weir112
22Nathan Soper0.50.5
23Charlotte Grogan1012
24Ryan Gerkin1012