The county quarter-finals are now completed, and sadly despite fielding 3 teams thanks to successful qualifying campaigns, 2 fell at the first hurdle. The u160s lost by the narrowest of margins 7.5 - 8.5 to Yorkshire in a nail-biting contest, while the u140s went to Derby and lost 6-10 to Lancashire. However the u120s made a trip to Northampton where they recorded a fine 8-4 win over Nottinghamshire, and now face Essex at home in the semi-finals on June 10th.
The ECF Quarter-Final draws have been announced. The U120s play Notts on May13th with the U160s facing Yorkshire on the same day. The U140s have a trip to Lancashire on May21st
After the weak team we fielded in February, it was with some relief we sent a stronger side out to face Cambridgeshire and Suffolk in our final round of matches on Sunday. The Cambridgeshire match in the morning was critical, as victory would guarantee our qualification for the ECF national stages of the County Championships. I don't know what the team had for breakfast, but the result was remarkable, as we beat Cambridgeshire by 11-5, the widest margin of victory I can recall us recording against Cambridgeshire.
After the successful results back in October when we won both our matches, I had hoped that success might act as a spur to other players to take part, and ensure that momentum was maintained that would see us qualify for the ECF stages of the County Championships. We were able to welcome four new players for their first matches for Herts U160, Paul Walton, Andrew Smith, Francois Swiegers and Ger Reilly, but with an average grade of under 136, our team was statistically the weakest team we have fielded since we joined EACU in 2012.
Playing in the East Anglia Chess Union County Competition on Sunday 31st January, 2016, Herts beat Suffolk 10.5 to 5.5. The match against Norfolk was drawn at 8 - 8 all.
Full results below.
Next matches are on 21st February.
After last season's solitary two draws from six matches last season, it was encouraging to record a win from the first match of our 2015/16 season in the East Anglian Chess Union County Championships.