25 January 2018

Six Abingdon players travelled to Surrey this afternoon to face ACS Egham International School in the first round of the regional stage of the National Schools' Championship. Each player had 60 minutes on the clock plus a 10 second increment per move.

  1. Ross Tselos (143)
  2. James Beckinsale (116)
  3. Thitipat Ditrungroj (112)
  4. Richard Oh (104)
  5. Seb Watkins (102)
  6. Jonathan Lee (91)

Egham's top two boards, Martin Kopernicky (181) and Kamer Yildizli (175), were significantly higher graded than our best two players, but Abingdon had the edge on the bottom four boards.

Ten minutes into the match, it was clear that both Seb and Jonathan had been drawn into playing too fast by their younger opponents, and the chance of an Abingdon victory looked slim. But they both successfully clawed their way back into winning positions and, with Richard looking comfortably in control on Board 4, the match then hinged on Board 3.

After about an hour, Seb, Richard and Jonathan had all won their games and Thitipat was clearly conducting a strong attack. When his opponent finally resigned, the match was won, and Ross and James could enjoy their games without having to worry about the overall match result. Both played well – James was indeed a clear pawn up after the opening – but both eventually succumbed to quality play.

It was a tough match but a deserved win for Abingdon. Congratulations to all involved.

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