The 91st Annual Championships of the British Chess Federation
Sunday 1st August - Saturday 14th August, The Spa Complex, Scarborough
Play over all 11 games by the FIDE World Major Champion
Saturday Aug 14: GM Jonathan Rowson of Troon was presented with the British Championship trophy and a cheque for £10,000 at the prizegiving ceremony in Scarborough. Joe Redpath of Edinburgh was presented with the FIDE World Major trophy, Kete Arakhamia won the British Women's title for a second successive year and Amy Officer of Perth won the British Girls Under 12 trophy. (All prizegiving photos by Donna Officer).
Aug 23: Late news! IA Stewart Reuben has pointed out that Joe Redpath gains the FIDE Master title and one IM norm from his FIDE World Major win - congratulations again.
Scottish Juniors at British: U13 Calum Macqueen 4/7; U12 Amy Officer 4.5/7 (Girls' Champ); U10 Jonathan Wright 4.5/7; U9 Bryan Rettie 3/7, Ali Roy 1.5; U8 Calum Fraser McDonald 3.5.
Amy Officer, Kete Arakhamia, Jonathan Rowson, Joe Redpath
Kete Arakhamia, Jonathan Rowson
Friday Aug 13: Friday the 13th held no fears as GM Jonathan Rowson became the first Scot since 1946 to win the British Championship title. A nervy final round draw against Andrew Greet was sufficient to fend off the challenge of the chasing pack. Fellow Scot GM Paul Motwani held GM Peter Wells to a draw and IM Simon Williams made a valiant effort to defeat GM Mark Hebden but three draws on the top three boards maintained Rowson's half point lead.
Rowson was clearly the best player in the tournament recording a string of incisive victories - only an opening accident on Tuesday prevented a more emphatic victory margin. Jonathan now adds the British to the Scottish championship title won in Hamilton last month and the Hastings Premier won in January. The £10,000 first prize will come in handy and rating points have been gained on the way to 2600 and world top 100 ranking.
You wait decades for one bit of success and suddenly get two in one day. Joe Redpath won in the last round to take the FIDE World Major championship. Congratulations to both players. More details as soon as available.
Thursday Aug 12: Jonathan Rowson is rolling again - this time right over Stewart Haslinger in a perfect one sided crush to retake the top spot. Peter Wells could only draw his all GM clash v John Emms. A quick look at the possible pairings suggest that Rowson will have the relatively modest task of playing Andrew Greet 2310 (who did beat Kete today though) while Wells and Williams will face a GM.
58 years of hurt (well minor irritation anyway) could soon be over if Rowson can take the British title. He must try and win since the play-off lottery on Saturday has to be avoided.
Wednesday Aug 11: Jonathan Rowson took a time out with a relatively quick draw against fellow Scot Paul Motwani (photos by Mark Crowther).
Kete Arakhamia stumbled badly in a very sharp position against Simon Williams. Fritz says 18...0-0 rather than 0-0-0 is clear edge to Black.
Rowson and Wells share lead on 7/9, two to go.
Joe Redpath wins again and leads the FIDE World Major by half a point from IM Peter Marusenko.
Tuesday Aug 10: A terrible opening was ruthlessly exploited by GM Peter Wells as Scottish Champion Jonathan Rowson suffered his first defeat. Meanwhile Scotland's player of the Year Kete Arakhamia made her own bid for the title by moving into the joint lead with an apparently effortless win against Craig Hanley.
Rowson, Wells and Arakhamia lead on 6.5/8 - three games to go (and then potentially penalties! ie a quickplay play-off on Saturday if leaders tied after 11 rounds).
Top Scot junior Joe Redpath has managed to just say no to draws and is rewarded with the lead in the FIDE World Major.
Monday Aug 9: An historic moment beckons. Scottish Champion Jonathan Rowson is a point clear of the field with four games left to play. He manufactured a win today for from what looked an unpromising middle game position against IM Danny Gormally.
Jonathan, Paul Motwani and John Shaw have all been close to snatching the British title in recent years but this is clearly the best chance with Jonathan on a hugely impressive 6.5/7.
There are dangerous players still to play Wells, Summerscale, Ward, Hebden even Paul Motwani (!) but the rating system and form to date makes JR the favourite in any match up before the last round on Friday.
Preview: Scottish Champion GM Jonathan Rowson and GM Paul Motwani are ranked 2nd and 3rd seeds behind GM Mark Hebden. After a succession of near misses in recent years this really is the best chance of a Scottish winner since R F Combe's victory in 1946.
The pundits told us last year that all the top English GMs stayed away from Edinburgh because of the Indian players. This is now a Brits only event and the player list below has only 5 English GMs - why the continued no show? 10K is not a trivial first prize.
Other Scots in championship: Ketevan Arakhamia, Eddie Dearing, Steve Mannion, Andrew Muir, Jonathan Grant, Graeme Kafka.
Prizes: - £10,000; £5,000; £2,500; £1,500; £1,200; £900; £700; £500; £300.
British Ladies Champion: - £500 British Under 21 Champion: - £250.
Player list: HEBDEN, Mark 2559g – Leicester; ROWSON, Jonathan 2558g – Troon; MOTWANI, Paul 2552g – Belgium; EMMS, John 2508g – Hildenborough; WELLS, Peter K 2494g – Abingdon; SUMMERSCALE, Aaron 2493g – London; WARD, Chris 2490g – Beckenham; GORMALLY, Daniel 2479m – London; JONES, Gawain 2453c# – Ireland; LEDGER, Andrew 2452m – Bedford; ARAKHAMIA-Grant, Ketevan 2446m~ – Edinburgh; WILLIAMS, Simon K 2427m Farnham; PALLISER, Richard 2411m – Harrogate; HASLINGER, Stewart 2408m - Southport; QUINN, Mark – 2406m – Ireland; DEARING, Eddie 2392 – Botley; HOUSKA, Jovanka 2375wg~ – Maidenhead; KNOTT, Simon 2359m – Hertford; HANLEY, Craig 2356f #– Lancaster; SOWRAY, Peter 2349f – London; GORDON, Stephen 2338# – Oldham; TAN, Desmond 2335# – Mitcham; HOWELL, David 2334f # – Seaford; MANNION, Stephen 2333m – Paisley; TAYLOR, Martin 2331f – Rainham; MUIR, Andrew 2328m – Dumbarton; MARTYN, Rafe 2322# – Belgium; GREET, Andrew 2310 – St. Austell; SHERWIN, James 2303m - Bradford-on-Avon; LEDGER, Dave 2285f – Bedford; RUDD, Jack 2281 – Bideford; BIGG, Andrew 2275 – Oxted; ASHTON, Adam 2270 – Oldham; GRANT, Jonathan 2266 - Edinburgh; RENDLE, Thomas 2258# – Hastings; RAYNER, Francis 2252 – St. Leonards; SURTEES, Mike 2239 – Bolton; SPENCE, David 2236 – Ipswich; SNAPE, Ian 2228 – Keston; BURROWS, Martin 2226 – Leicester; LYELL, Mark 2217f – London; STOREY, Charles 2217 – Newcastle-upon-Tyne; HUTCHINSON, Paul 2216 – Otley; WALTON, Alan 2208 – Oldham; LEDGER, Steve 2203 – Bedford; NIXON, Thomas 2198# – Kew; ADAMS, David 2180 – Totley; GREGORY, Stephen 2180 – Ipswich; HUTCHINSON, Norman 2176 – Cambridge; HEMPSON, Peter 2172 – Sheffield; BRISCOE, Christopher 2157 – Chessington; SMITH, Graham 2157 – Milton Keynes; KAFKA, Graeme 2143 - Edinburgh; ALMOND, Philip 2131– Preston; CLARKE, Thomas 2131 – Ulster; MYCROFT, Richard 2110# – Foxton; PYM, Thomas 2059# – Newport; SISASK, Jesper 2057 – Bristol; WESTWOOD, Richard 2030# – Cannock; BRYANT, Richard – Llangynog; 59