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Two teams of four Welsh juniors travelled down to Daventry for the 2nd weekend of the junior 4NCL. The strength of the opposition was very high and, unlike in previous years, our teams were the youngest in the tournament:
Ben Choo Yin
The tournament was structured into two pools of four teams that played against each other (3 rounds) on Saturday with the top two teams and bottom two teams from each pool formed into two further pools (2 rounds) on Sunday. The top two teams from the top pool were awarded 1st and 2nd place, with the top team from the bottom pool awarded 3rd place.
Both our teams ended up in the bottom pool but weren't completely outgunned on Saturday. There were good individual results and there was everything to play for on Sunday.
With Marchogion Cymraeg beating Yateley Manor by 3-0 with only half an hour to go, and the score against Witney standing at 1-1, Arjan knew that he had to pull off a win to secure third place for Dreigiau Coch. Having never played through on a bishop and pawn endgame in a tournament setting, he took his time and maturely calculated his position to queen and then mate his opponent, with Ben offering a draw to secure the win 2.5/1.5 over Witney and the third place trophy!
It was great to see the juniors clearly enjoying the occasion and supporting each other throughout. Great camaraderie developed not just between team members but also across the two teams, so that, in the final round, in the battle for third place, it seemed a shame that only one of the teams could take home the prize.
Well played to all our juniors! Many thanks to the organisers, parents, and team captains (Wangs and Sivarajasingams) for a successful weekend!
Tim Kett and Audrey Yong