On the 23rd of November, the University of Reading Chess Society entered two teams into the London qualifying round for the 20/20 Chess Competition. Each game was played at rapid play tournament standard, meaning each player had 20 minutes on the clock to make their moves. The society went up against 14 other teams from universities and the general public. Scores in this qualifier determined entry to the final in Birmingham.
Team A consisted of: Mridul Manoj, Shaun Rodrigues, Matt Brewer and James Connors. Team B consisted of Gareth Qian, Tom Hook, Giovanni Taffarello and Aleem Yawar.
Amazingly, B Team qualified for the final tournament in Birmingham later this January, with 2 wins, 2 draws and only a single loss, finishing on 3 points out of a total 5. The A Team narrowly failed to qualify, but in the spirit of determination they will be trying again in January.
Special mentions must go to both Gareth Qian and James Connors. Gareth Qian was unbeaten at the tournament, winning four of his five games and drawing one – an impressive feat – earning himself a personal award and medal (as pictured). James Connors (Society Treasurer and Competition Coordinator) single–handedly organised entry, travel and teams for this tournament. Additionally, he ran an in-house competition for the society that allowed all members a taste of competitive play and allowed the teams to practise.
The event was a great day out for all players and the B team will now go on to compete at the final in Birmingham on February 1st. Good luck to them all!
The Chess Society have had an active year for both competitive and friendly chess (for players of all abilities). Sessions are held in Edith Morely 175, Tuesday, 6:30 to 9:30.
Article by Dulcie Pellowe and James Connors.