English Under 11s Championship
Report by David Levens
On Saturday, October 15th children and their parents, from all over the country, as far afield as Cornwall, Somerset, London and Lancashire, converged on Nottingham Junior High School for the annual English U11 Championship. This is a 2 day event held over 5 rounds, with some games lasting up to 3 hours!
Due, in part, to half term holidays, numbers were a little down on previous years, but nevertheless thirty-five hopeful youngsters made their bids to gain the coveted half norms as a necessary part-qualification for the England Team trial to be held in Liverpool next April. At the end of two days of hard-fought battles over the chess board 17 happy boys and girls had scored the necessary 3 points or above, and now need just one more half-norm. However, the winner, Lavanya Maladkar of Bramcote Hills Primary School, also a member of West Nottingham Chess Club, won every game, scoring 5 out of 5 and is the only girl in the long history of this event to be crowned the English Under 11 champion!! Lavanya, thus gets a full norm and qualifies automatically for a place in the England team trial for 2017.
Those who gained a half-norm were the following: Ben Aubury (Oxfordshire), Zayan Baig (Nottingham), Daniel Chen, Anika Khare and Umar Syed (all Leicestershire), Khian Dharmasena (Cambridge), Elizabeth Finn, Callum Vyse and Leo Yu (Sussex). Leo also finished equal third with Toby Kan of Somerset, both on 4/5. Others who gained their half norms were: Georgia Headlong of Wiltshire, who also gained the trophy for first girl; Adam Hussain of Cornwall, second place on 4.5/5; Sasha Kamotsky (Wilts), Tarina Jayawarna (Cheshire), Samir Khan (Somerset), Hugo Rayner (Oxon), and Iben Hullah (Somerset).