Honours hopes hushed


Recent league matches have seen title hopes dampened for Telepost teams. Telepost A travelled to Division One leaders Maddocks A needing a win to close the gap on the pre-season favourites and current holders. Despite the mid-season loss of their board one player, Athar Ansari, the Oakengates side proved too strong, taking a 3-1 win that lifts them comfortably clear in the table. The A team are still in the mix for a second place finish, however, helped by a thumping 4.5-0.5 win in the latest club derby against Telepost B. Dan Hilditch-Love prevented the whitewash with a fine draw against Nigel Ferrington on board one, and Sam Hollands made his Division One debut as a late replacement for the B team. Peter Crean made a welcome return to OTB play, winning for the A team on bottom board against B team captain Steve Wilson.

In Division Two, Telepost C suffered their second defeat of the season, at home to Newport B who fielded their strongest team so far this campaign. The match was won on the middle boards despite Kate Walker’s win on board one and Dennis Bonner’s draw on five. The win moves Newport within two points of the Cs. Telepost C host promotion rivals Telford B on Monday in what is now a crucial fixture in a three-way fight for the second promotion spot. Telford B’s cause was helped by a heavy 4.5-0.5 defeat of Telepost D, with reserve Graham Shepherd sparing the D team’s blushes with a draw on top board.

After heavy defeats in round one of the 4NCL Online Season 7, things improved considerably in round two, with both our teams posting 3-1 wins. The Dark Knights teams now sit mid-table and can expect closer matches in the next round, as the competition is run on a Swiss system.

Top Telepost performers at Blackpool Chess Congress were Kate Walker, with 3/5 in the Intermediate (U1850) section, and James Holyhead with the same score in the Minor (U1700). Moved forward by a month from its traditional March date, the congress still attracted well over 300 players as more and more weekend congress players return to OTB post-Covid.

Notice has been given of a special Online EGM of the Shropshire Chess Association to discuss the reconstitution of the Association as a charity. Broadly, this would allow SCA to retain more of its income and help attract and target resources for work such as Junior Chess. As regular attendees at Telepost will know, the work that has been put in to Junior Chess in the last couple of seasons is paying real dividends – we now have five regular juniors at the club and continue to receive enquiries from interested parents. Details of the EGM are here.

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