World Youth Championships 2010
Porto Carras, Halkidiki , Greece
11 Rounds, October 20 to 30
photos 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11
Sunday 31st October
We are leaving today Phil went down to the restaurant purely out of devilness at 6.30am local time just to see how many of the troops turned up for breakfast an hour early. Yes, some did although they claimed they had been up ages & knew the clocks had gone back an hour. The transfer coaches arrived at 8am & we headed for our flight from Thessaloniki.
After a good flight with clear skies we arrived at Berlin airport at lunchtime but were advised we couldn't check in for Glasgow for 4hours. We eventually found a cafe bar where we had lunch & settled for a few hours & the guys occupied themselves with chess boards & playing cards.
We all arrived back on Scottish terra firma early evening after a very enjoyable & successful trip to the World Youth Chess Championships 2010.
Saturday 30th October
Well today is the last game & it's an early one at 10am. Wins for Clement, Ali & Alice. Draws for Liam, Andrew, Jonny, Lisa, Maryann. Unfortunately Captiva & Leora had to play each other & it did finish a draw.
A lot of us went to the village today to do last minute shopping & some of us took a pizza lunch there for a change from the multiple choices of the hotel restaurant. After the evening meal everyone took free time.
Some of us took coffee (5 Euro a cup) & listened to the resident pianist. Most of the children played doubles (they had been banned until today) against Ireland & other countries that were resident in our Hotel. England came across again from their hotel to socialise & some of the girls went to the onsite disco.
Friday 29th October
True team spirit was shown last night by Leora. Her family room had severe water leak from the storms we had on Wednesday night & they were offered a plush suite in the adjoining hotel. However, Leora refused to move point blank as she wanted to stay with the rest of the team ahh bless.
My misfortune today was the sage of the taxi. More to the point no taxi. I wanted to go into the village which is a few KM away & an 8Euro taxi ride. I went to reception to book a taxi & they got no reply. They tried for an hour whilst I sat around. Eventually I gave up & went for lunch & came back at 2pm & a repeat of waiting for an hour & still no taxi grrrrrr. So I tried to book one for tomorrow morning & they apparently won't take bookings because its only considered a short distance...... well answer your phones people.
50% score today with the Under 10's all getting wins (Liam, Iona & Colin) as well as Captiva, Jonny. Draws for Lisa, Alice, Ian & Andrew.
Thursday 28th October
The past 60 hours has definitely been unpredictable. On Tuesday morning we were sunbathing & in the swimming pools in what must have been the hottest & certainly the sunniest day. Yesterday started overcast & then the heavens opened & I mean opened to the point that those of us that went on an excursion had to wade through the water. Then last night we had a huge storm that the locals say they have never seen anything like it before or at least the amount of rainwater. It not only flooded the ground floor at our hotel so that the spa had to close irrespective but we also had a power cut from before light through to 6pm this evening. Breakfast & lunch was very basic & the best the kitchen could do under the circumstances. They had a generator for the lighting at the playing venue . We were getting worried that power wasn't going to be resumed by the evening & we already were having to rely on candles to use the hotel bathroom facilities. Anyway our worries went when gradually the lights came back on & eventually normal service resumed.
The chess playing results have been on a roller coaster too with 7.5 points scored Tuesday, 1 point yesterday & 9 points today with wins for Leora, Colin, Fergus, Alice, Andrew, Jonny, Clement & draws for Liam, Iona, Ali & Maryann.
Wednesday 27th October
Tale of two days between today & yesterday. Yesterday we had the glorious sunshine & today it was torrential downpours. Some of us had gone on an excursion to some historic caves & the market. However, at the market we had no choice but to wade through the 6inches of flooding.
Today is Phil's birthday & he was surprised with a birthday cake but then kept asking the players to give their real scores of the day unfortunately they had, which amounted to draws for Liam & Jonny & that was it.
Tuesday 26th October
This has to be the warmest day so far or at least the sunniest. Many ventured into the pools this morning before lunch. Preparation was completed after lunch & off they went to do their best on this the 8 th round. Results came in fast & furious & wins for Liam, Leora, Ian, Andrew & Clement. Draws for Iona, Captiva, Lisa, Ali & Maryann.
Monday 25th October
Its rest day today some of the group are going to the golf course, horse riding, tennis courts & swimming were the main activities of the day. There was a football match but Alan didn't have a clue who won in the end as there were so many little people taking part they lost count & the teams did get one sided.
Some ventured on the taxi ferry across to the local village to the souvenir shops & the hotel train took some up to the local winery for wine tasting (tasting for adults only & limited to only 15 mins before the train returned). I chickened out of the taxi ferry & got one with wheels to take Phil & I to the village with the intention of fixing a pick up time with the driver to bring us back. We didn't bother asking as from the time we left our hotel to the destination our driver was on his mobile having a heated conversation & at one point Phil interrupted to ensure the guy knew where he was to drop us off. Luckily the roads were fairly quiet. Ironically the weather today is the worse we have had. The temperatures were okay but it was overcast all day & by 5pm was raining.
Evening was back to preparation for the next game tomorrow. Phil is being the task master & pushing the team for even better results this week.
Sunday 24th October
Early start today as two games today, the first game is at 9am. Everyone managed breakfast in good time & went across to the playing venue in the sunshine. The sun was still shining on this probably the warmest day so far but some of the troops were not shining. There was great disappointment in both the boys & girls camps. However, they didn't have long to dwell as time was ticking & they had lunch & preparation to do for the afternoon game.
In the afternoon Iona, Leora, Jonny & Andrew got draws & Lisa, Maryann & Fergus with wins. Some good after game analysis & then free time as tomorrow is the rest day. Some met up at a small disco at our hotel with the English delegation who had come over as they are in a hotel 9km away so have to come to the playing venue by coach each day.
Saturday 23rd October
Looking forward to a good day again after yesterdays great results. They did start coming through with wins from Clement & Ian. Fergus & Alice got their first wins & draws for Lisa, Ali, Maryann & Andrew.
Lots of swimming today & frolics in the pools. The bike hirers didn't have such a good day today. Fergus got a puncture & had to struggle back with his bike. However, the Wadler family had more of an ordeal as Adam got a puncture 3 miles away & the only way back was for Catherine to position Adam's bike over her handle bars & push. By this time the sun had set (which is very pretty) & once it does the temperature does drop quickly as does light. It took them an hour to get back to base, exhausted & cold.
Everyone went to bed well before 10.30pm as an early start tomorrow as its two rounds & the first one starts at 9am.
Friday 22nd October
Took me a while to come to life this morning as I had rather a disturbed night. I woke at 12.30am boiling hot & couldn't work out why as the air conditioning was on. I checked it & yes it was on but not blowing cold it was blowing hot. I opened the doors & went out onto the balcony to cool down & believe me I was cooled down. We have the Scottish flag hanging from the railings & I went over to unravel it & was woken up completely when I was doused in water, straight down my back & of course I was only in my nightie. If there were any children or foreign adults awake I now believe they know a few new words it was the shock. We didn't find out where exactly the water was thrown from but we guess the room above but the hotel security were not very interested. We also queried the air conditioning & apparently at night it switches to heat!!
So after a sleepy start to the day the routine coaching & preparation took place after breakfast. A few of the troops managed to get a swim & some hired bikes but the weather was overcast today.
We had some great results today Clement, Jonny, Iona & Liam got their first win, Colin managed to get a draw as did Ian & moved onto 1.5. Ali moved onto 2 points & Andrew 1 with another draw & Captiva got a draw.
Ian took the prize for making the most moves which were in the 100's but also being so late the restaurant had closed. One of the adults offered to go & source something from the hotel but he declined. In hindsight his adrenaline was keeping him going but we heard the next morning that his hunger did set in but there was nowhere to get anything. We have learnt from that & now will be ordering at least one packed lunch a day for anyone who finishes late or at least being more aware of the restaurant closing time of 10pm if games go on late so we can grab something.
Thursday 21st October 2010
Everyone managed breakfast in good time it does help having such a big choice. More structure to the day today with all the coaching & preparation going on with the benefit of knowing the draw well in advance. However, Phil checked for the draw around midnight but no sign of it but was there at 6am.
Everyone balanced their day with a mixture of adhoc coaching, preparation as we were able to look up opponents previous games & leisure activities including swimming, sunbathing & exploration locally on bikes.
Wednesday 20th Oct
Breakfast was served from 7.30am but only Maryann & Ian were there at that time, the rest of the party gradually made it & oh boy what a choice cereals, fruit, yoghurts, French toast, bacon, eggs, sausages, sauté potatoes, hams, cheese, pancakes, croissants, pain de chocolat, choc spread & various marmalades & jams & even for the more healthy conscious, salad.
Team meeting at 10am where everyone was given their ID badge & told the rules of the event & venues. Unfortunately the under 10's & 8's have to play in the hotel next door to the main venue. Phil was not happy that the organisers are being so strict about who can go into the U10 venue as they are not even letting coaches or heads of delegation stay once play commences. Luckily. our guys won't have language barriers with the arbiters in the event of any disputes, with English being the main language.
Ad hoc coaching throughout the morning & eventually when the first round draw was published at 1pm we were able to look up the opponents previous games & do some preparation. Late buffet lunch & then some more prep before heading to the playing venue for the 4pm start.
|View from balcony
Tuesday 19th October 2010
Like all intended best plans they don't always happen as you want. We had specifically booked 5 taxis all for 4.30am to ensure we got to the airport in good time. However, the taxi firm made its own plans & only sent two but they were 7 seaters. Off they went & 20minutes later one arrived back & took 6 but advised us that he would come back for the rest of us as the other taxi would not be back. The hotel shuttle service starts at 5am so we were able to get that to the airport so we don't know what time or if the taxi bothered to go back to the hotel for us. Luckily the airport was not too busy & we did have plenty of time.
At Thessaloniki we boarded the chartered coach & travelled 1.5 hours to our destination, Port Carras, Halkidiki by noon. After some delays by the organisers we were allocated our rooms. Ours is spacious with everything we need (apart from internet access - although available elsewhere in the hotel) with a balcony overlooking the swimming pools & sea.
Lunch was served buffet style, self service with lots to choose from so everyone ate (even Ali). I did try one olive just in case my taste buds had changed but oil is still the best use for them. The afternoon was free time recovering from our journeys & chilling out with most venturing into the swimming pools & onto the private beach & sea.
Evening meal is served from 7pm & with much relief to the players, until 10.30pm, as when games commence tomorrow at 4pm there could be some late finishers. Again a self serve buffet style with many choices. The serious work has now started with coaching & studying taking place. Phil is attending the organisers meeting at 10pm to go through finer details.
Monday 18th October 2010
We arrived in Berlin early evening & after checking into the Airport hotel' that was 10 minutes away, the party split into two with one group venturing into the centre of Berlin & visiting sites like Checkpoint Charlie. The rest of us found a restaurant a few minutes away from the hotel that served a good selection for everyone. A little coaching happened for the youngsters before an early night as the alarms needed to be set early as the taxis were booked for 4.30am.
U18 Boys Clement Sreeves
U16 Boys Andrew McClement, Jonny Scott
U14 Boys Ian McDonald
U12 Boys Fergus Skillen
U10 Boys Colin Howie
U8 Boys Liam Richmond
U18 Girls Maryann McDonald
U16 Girls Ali Roy
U14 Girls Alice Lampard, Lisa Flaherty
U12 Girls Leora Wadler, Captiva Mills
U10 Girls Iona Bryson