165 chess players gathered at the Sydney Latvian Society Club in Strathfield, to compete in our bi-annual 8-round school holiday event – the Inner West Chess Challenge. This is our 22nd edition of the tournament, which has been running since 2007.
About 70% of the players had JCL ratings prior to the tournament. Of those rated players, their ratings ranged from 842 (top seed Winston Zhao Chen), down to 311. We had about 30-40 newcomers to competition chess, as well as quite a few players who have competed in state and national junior events, and who also play in adult tournaments.
We had a few major upsets (200-300 points) as early as Round 3, with 3 of the top 4 seeds toppling to their lower rated opponents. It took 6 rounds before there was a clear leader, Shaheel Faizal, on maximum points, 6/6. Also undefeated were Ryan Hii, Austin Liu and John Nguyen on 5.5 points.
Shaheel drew with Ryan in Round 7, to leave him tied with Austin on 6.5/7, going into the final round. Shaheel then defeated Austin to take outright first place on 7.5 points, so congratulations to our first winner of the Inner West Chess Challenge in 2018 – Shaheel Faizal!
The final standings, crosstable and list of prizewinners can be downloaded from the links below. Sydney Academy of Chess would like to thank the familiar Sydney Latvian Society Club for supporting the event by providing an excellent, spacious hall, all of the parents for encouraging their children and making it possible for them to compete by driving them to and from Strathfield, all of our wonderful arbiters and helpers on the day for running the tournament, and finally all of the players for their great sportsmanship and fair play throughout the day.
We hope to see you at another chess event soon!