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Watch this space for up-to-date news of chess events from the Otago region.

Club Rapid Championship 1st leg – 29 July

The grades were set using the NZCF Rapid ratings under the rules.

Bob Clarkson started in the A Grade after a string Rapid year in 2019, but was forced to drop out after the first round. Ben Suazo dominated the rest taking teh grade on 5/6 ahead of new memeber Romero Suggate on 4 and Edward Sarfas on 3 points.

The B Grade was run as a six round Swiss, and resulted in a convincing victory for another new memeber Roshan Gangani on 5½/6, a poimt ahead iof Terry Duffield in 2nd on 4½. The competition was very close with the next five players bunched together within a point of each other.

In the combined cross table below the inter-grade handicap of 3 points has been added to the A grade, showing the overall standings after the first leg. The handicaps are derived from the difference in expected score between the average NZCF rating of each grade.

View combined Crosstable and Rating performances
View Grade Crosstables

Blitz Championship 1 – 8 July

On 8 July the first Blitz event for the inaugural Blair Freeman Trophy was held as a ten player Round Robin with a time limit of Bronstein 5 mins plus 3 seconds delay per move. The tournament was won by Quentin Johnson on 9/9 with new member Romero Suggate proving extremely competitive in 2nd on 8 and Ben Suazo 3rd on 7 points.

View Crosstable

Club Championship – 1 July

The first leg of the 2020 Club Championship was interrupted by the Covid 19 Level 4 lockdown on 19 March but resumed on 17 June after the Graham Haase Memorial and Swiss Rapid were cancelled for 2020 and the Cleland Trophy converted to an online event.

Ben Suazo leads the A Grade on 4/5 after dropping one game to defending champion Edward Sarfas, but winning the rest. Edward in turn dropped a game to Hamish Gold and both these players drew with Brent Southgate to finish tied in second place on 3½. Southgate had a strong event to finish 4th on 3 points.

The B grade was won by Ryan High on 4½/6, just ahead of Hildon Nisa on 4 points, with Alf Loretan and John Armstrong tied for 3rd on 3½. Thus Ryan earned promotion to the A Grade for the 2nd leg.

The rules mean that each grade starts with a base score and/or a scaling factor, to allow performances to be roughly compared between grades, based on the average rating of the field in each grade. That allows players in different grades to compete for the same trophy on fair terms. The Championship totals in the link below show the effect of these adjustments.

View all crosstables
View A-Grade crosstable and rating performances
View B&C-Grade crosstable and rating performances

May/June online Rapid – 30 June

Following on from the April online rapid another event was started in May on the Otago Chess Club Team page on lichess with the format one game each Wednesday night as a ten player round robin. The event was won by Ben Suazo on 7½/8 equal with Iaian Lamonth on 7½/9 though Ben didn't get to complete his final game against Hildon Nias before the event was abandoned once normal playing conditions resumed.

View Crosstable and Rating performances

April online Rapid – 30 April

The Covid 19 lockdown forced the club to suspend its normal calendar for several months and play went online instead. From 1 April and online rapid event took place on the Otago Chess Club Team page on lichess with the format two games against each opponent each Wednesday night. The event was won by Ben Suazo on 5/8.

View Crosstable and Rating performances

Autumn Rapid Open – 8 March

The 2020 Autumn seasonal rapid held on Sunday 8th March was run without any problems. It was a close run finish for first place between the top three but Malcolm Crack came through with an unblemished record of 5 wins from 5 games so a deserved win for him. Followed closely by Joe McKee and Romero Suggate with 4 out of 5. Fourth place was shared between Edward Sarfas and Ben Suazo. In the under 1600 Hamish Gold was first, followed by young Artem Anokovna who played really well and in third place was Arthur Chia. The under 1300 was won outright by Romero Suggate with 4 wins followed by Adrian Smith-Beech and in third place Martin Brook. Upset Prizes also went to Artem Anokvna for a draw against lewis Kim and a win against Bob Clarkson. Sophia Witham who was the only player to arrive from Invercargill received an upset prize for drawing with Bob Clarkson. Mention in despatches was also made at the prize giving with upsets by Joe McKee who beat Ben Suazo and by Romero Suggate who beat Edward Sarfas. It was great to see Ross Black down from Christchurch again to participate in this tournament which has now for quite a number of years unfortunately he had to cut short his round 4 game and default round 5 because of time pressure to get back to Christchurch. It was the same with Sophia Witham also missed her last round with needing to catch the bus back to Invercargill but was great effort from her to get here for the tournament.

The next rapid open is the Winter Rapid on Sunday 7 June.

View Crosstable

Allan Chang Memorial – 26 February

The Allan Chang 10 minute hourglass tournament found a unique winner in just three rounds - Geoff AImers scored 3/3 to finish clear first. As always the trophy was decided in the first round, with Lewis Kim defeating top seed Ben Suazo to claim the biggest upset. Although there were other upsets, none came close to this.

View Crosstable and Rating performances

2020 Otago chess club AGM – 12 February

Bob Clarkson stayed on a President for another year, as did Brent Southgate as Secretary and Geoff Aimers as Vice President. Max Lough stood down as Treasurer to pursue his studies in 2020 and was replaced by Alf Loretan. Bob Glass remained as Patron, but stood down as Auditor and was replaced by Quentin Johnson. Shoji Fukushima resigned from the committee for 2020 and was replaced by honorary member Lisa Oseki. Subscriptions remained the same as 2019. The 2020 committee comprises:

President: Bob Clarkson; Vice President: Geoff Aimers; Secretary: Brent Southgate; Treasurer: Alf Loretan; Director of Junior Play: Quentin Johnson; Past-President: N/A; Committee members: Terry Duffield, Edward Sarfas and Lisa Oseki; Auditor: Quentin Johnson; Patron: Bob Glass.

The Calendar for 2020 was accepted with no chnages for 2020 with the committee to draft changes for 2021.