The Megafinal stage of the Delancey UK Chess Challenge took place at St Faith’s School, Cambridge on Saturday, 1st June. Over 200 children were battling over 6 rounds, from 10am to 5pm, to try to obtain the points needed to qualify for the next stage of the competition.
The UK Chess Challenge first took place in 1996 and has since grown into the largest children’s chess tournament in the world. The Megafinals are stage 2 of the competition. These are regional events run by independent local organisers who also run other chess events in their region. Players who make the qualification score (or who win their section) qualify for the next stage – the Gigafinals.
Oaks International were well represented, with 7 pupils competing across different age categories. Chess is a very popular at the school and the children had been preparing for the competition at the Tuesday afterschool Chess Club with Mr Orwin.
All the children conducted themselves brilliantly, trying their hardest in their games but greeting victory or defeat with equal grace and they should all feel very proud of themselves, particularly those who were taking part for the first time.
When all the dust had settled, four of our seven children made it through to the Southern Gigafinal, which is contested by all the best players in the south of England. Congratulations go to David, Bernard, Brandon and Adam for getting through to the next round.
A special mention should also go to Adam; he not only won a medal for his third place finish out of all the boys in the Under 7 section, but showed kindness to an opponent who was losing his match, and offered him a draw which meant he would also qualify for the next round. Adam had already qualified so this was not harming his own chances!
Congratulations on qualifying and good luck in the Gigafinal.