Monday, 15 October 2012

Chess Victoria Secondary Schools Final

Today was arbiter double-duty for me. I started the day at Brighton Grammar for the Chess Victoria Secondary Schools final, acting as an arbiter along with Chess Victoria President Leonid Sandler & Jamie Kenmure. The tournament was a very strong one, with a number of players in the upper echelon of Victorian Chess, not just Victorian junior chess. Although players were initially seeded alphabetically, the unofficial top seeds were FM Bobby Cheng, Eugene Schon & Karl Zelesco, with plenty of other strong opposition, such as Allen Yu, Michael Chan, Max Chew Lee, Zachary Loh & Kyle Gibson all in contention for individual honours. The top contenders for the overall team were Scotch College (Eugene Schon), Melbourne High (Bobby Cheng), Balwyn High (Karl Zelesco) & Glen Waverley Secondary (Michael Chan).
The early result that shaped the tournament was Eugene Schon beating Bobby Cheng in round 3. Karl Zelesco turned out to be the other player who was beating all his opponents & the climatic final round saw Eugene playing Karl, with both players on 6/6. Although Karl won Eugene's queen, Eugene had a rook, knight & bishop for it & eventually converted this material edge into a win in the last game to finish in the tournament! This turned out to be a critical game, not only in terms of individual results, but also for the team results.
Individually, Eugene Schon was 1st with 7/7, with a number of players tied for 2nd with 6/7. Ultimately the 3rd place trophy went to Bobby Cheng, while Karl Zelesco was 2nd on countback. The team results saw Scotch College win by 1 point ahead of Melbourne Grammar, with Glen Waverley Secondary taking 3rd place.
I also took a few photos that I have included below

Round 7 underway, with the vital top board clash between Eugene Schon & Karl Zelesco
 The rest of the playing hall in the final round ... 138 players makes for quite a big tournament!
The trophies & medallions for the winning individuals & teams, as well as the perpetual trophy in the middle. 
 Individual 1st place Eugene Schon receiving his trophy from Leonid Sandler
The winning team from Scotch College. They now play in the Australian Schools tournament in early December in Canberra, and look to defend their title from 2011!

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