Shropshire Chess

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Double Top for Telepost

Telepost A finally clinched the Division One title - but only just! In a desperately close finish Church Stretton's valiant late charge took them within a whisker of a playoff for first place.
(Pictured l to r) Richard Bryant and Jamie Hopkins (standing), Keith Tabner, Dave Bates, and Nigel Ferrington. Captain Bryant certainly led by example all season - I wonder if his tally of 11 wins 3 draws and 0 defeats has ever been beaten?. - Keith Tabner

Link to League Archives


Division Two Champions

Congratulations to the Telepost B team which secured the Division 2 championship with a thrilling 3.5 - 1.5 victory over a Shrewsbury B team that had been leading the title race for much of the season. Peter Crean (captain), John Bashall, Vinny Crean (seated), Gordon Thomas, (standing in for Dave Adderley) and John Westhead look justifiably proud. At the evening mid-point Shrewsbury were in the driving seat with a win for Andrew Lewis, a draw for Matthew Best, and the other games evenly poised. As the final tense minutes ticked away however it was the Telepost trio on the top three boards who held their nerve to bring home the spoils and steal the title from their county town rivals.

Wrekin Congress 2008
British Championships 2007
Read Keith Fowler's report on Shropshire interest in the British Championships and other summer events - including another grandmaster notch added to Simon Fowler's impressive CV.
Thomas Pym is County Champion
Tom Pym has become one of Shropshire's youngest county chess champions with an impressive victory in the Shropshire individual tournament.
Tom, 17, who plays for the Newport club, scored wins over some of the strongest players in the local game to take the title, culminating in a victory against former champion Nigel Ferrington in the seventh and last round.
The teenager, memorably once dubbed "Terrible Thomas" by David Everington after a heavy defeat, finished on six points out of a possible seven, his one loss being to his 18-year-old rival, Simon Fowler.
Although Simon also finished the tournament on six points, Tom becomes county champion with its £50 first prize under the "sum of progressive scores" tiebreak system, which essentially weighs up who had the toughest task over the seven rounds.
Simon is runner up, and Nigel Ferrington is third. The under-140 grading prize goes to Windsor Peck, while Chris Lewis takes the under-120 grading prize. The under-100 grading prize was shared between Andrew Lewis and Dave Lovegrove.
Best game prize goes to the encounter between Nigel Ferrington and Gavyn Cooper, which ended up a draw after a tremendous tussle.- Toby Neal Shropshire Star 11/09/07
Missing Trophy Is Found After 35 Years
This is a bit of a stunner in an age of disappearing trophies.
Ray Cox has been clearing out his attic and found in an old bag the long-lost trophy for the Shropshire Junior (i.e. under-18) championship - a chess board one side and the names of the winners on the other. As you will see it was presented by the eminent Sir Leonard Dyer in 1949.
Ray's recollection is that it ended up in his custody at a time when he was secretary of Shrewsbury CC, probably coinciding with either the retirement or death of Johnnie Jones from Ludlow who was the man who ran junior chess here in those days. My recollection is that the competition then ceased, leaving 1972 winner Andrew Glaze as the last holder.
Maybe we can use this for a new under-18 competition.
David Everington 19/10/07
League Controller Retires
Shropshire chess faces the prospect of a number of regular events on the chess calendar being scrapped because of a lack of people to organise them.
Six posts went unfilled at Shropshire Chess Association's 2007 annual meeting, the most important of which being that of league controller, which will throw the administration of the league in the new season into doubt.
John Casewell stood down from the role after four years, but said he was prepared to give help, support and guidance to a newcomer to the post.
However, when it was opened to nominations at the meeting, there was silence.
The same was true of the Oswestry rapidplay and the Darwin chess festival as well as the post of captain of the side for players graded under 125; under-100 captain; and Midland Counties Chess Union delegate.

Church Stretton and Shrewsbury B Win Summer Cups
Congratulations to the winners of the summer cups.
Church Stretton pipped Newport Juniors 3-2 in a hard fought final to win the 2007 Cox Trophy.
Shrewsbury B and Ludlow drew the the Minor Knockout final but Shrewsbury win on board countback..
Winter Knockout Cup Final
Non-playing Captain Peter Crean fielded a strong Telepost B team against Church Stretton A in the inaugural winter knockout final played at Shrewsbury on Friday 24/04/07.The result was:
N Ferrington 0.5 T Brotherton 0.5
J Hopkins 1 Nick Graham 0
R Bryant 1 G Link 0
J Bashall 0.5 G Shepherd 0.5
J Westhead 1 A Silver 0

Telepost B 4 - 1 Church Stretton A
Newport Top Of The Class 2006-07
Newport A have retained their Shropshire Chess League Division 1 title in convincing fashion, with Coddon A putting in a late spurt to take the runner up spot.
Wellington A are crowned division 2 champions with Ludlow A hot on their heels.
Church Stretton B take the division 3 honours with Wellington B also promoted to division 2.
Congratulations to all at the end of a long hard season.
Wrekin Congress 6th-7th January 2007
A thoroughly enjoyable weekend saw 104 competitors do battle over the board.
Martin Mitchell 4/5 won the Premier, with the Major and Minor events going to Colin Eckloff 4/5 and David Hollands 5/5. Congratulations to new organiser Colin Roberts and his team for a well run tournament.
Oswestry Rapidplay 2006
Nick Rutter completed a hat-trick at the Oswestry rapidplay
by winning the event for the third year in a row. Rutter, who plays for Newport, scored 5.5 points out of the six games.
A total of 32 players fought in the contest at Froncysyllte. Runner up was Telepost player Richard Bryant.
Grading prizes were won by Stephen Lloyd (Chester), Alan Silver (Church Stretton), John Simmons (Rhyl), and John Casewell (Telepost).
The junior prize was won by Alex Taylor (Newport) who got off to a great start by beating Glyn Morris (Urmston), who is graded 175, in round one. - Toby Neal
Hindsight (After yet another defeat)
The ability to see through one's arse
Whilst at the same time talking through it
Dave Bryan
Simon Fowler on Radio Shropshire
Shropshire County Champion 2006
Nigel Ferrington is to be crowned County Champion for a fourth time. The Telepost top board won the title with a remarkable clean sweep winning all seven matches against Shropshire's finest.
With some games still to be played, Nick Rutter (Newport) is runner up with 5.5, whilst players on 5 include Gavyn Cooper (Newport), Richard Bryant (Telepost), and David Bates (Telepost). The latter takes a grading prize in his first season in the county.

Play through the games on screen
National U175 Champion
Congratulations to Richard Bryant of Telepost who now jointly holds this title following his 4.5 score in the five round ECF tournament at Swansea. Meanwhile Simon Fowler and Thomas Pym are carrying the Shropshire flag in the National Championships at the same venue.
4th Darwin Shopping Centre Shrewsbury Chess Festival
23-30 Sept (excluding 24) 2006 - 10.00am-4.00pm
Yes chess played in a shopping centre mall, what better way to promote the game we all love than by bringing it out to the public.
The opportunity arose some years ago when an artist sculptured a large set to be played on in the centre.The idea being that players radio their moves from a balcony above to a person by the large board who moves the pieces.This is the magnet that draws the publics attention,and conventional boards are set up for social chess as well as this year a simul and a quick play tournement.
The festival this year begins on Saturday 23 Sept with a 30 board simul run by IM Lawrence Cooper, who wll be using the event to raise money for The National Alliance of Childhood Cancer Parent Organisations..
The festival concludes with a quick play organised by Alan Shaw on Saturday 30 Sept.
Admission for the simul is £2 adults,£1 children with free entry to the quickplay.
During the week 25-29 Sept the big board will be operating and anyone is welcome to participate.
Directly from this festival in the past we have recruited new players into the Shropshire League, helped introduce people to the game, and rekindled interest in others.
Anyone interested in participating can contact me on 01743 871172 or email me at
If it is the quick play you are interested in you can contact Alan Shaw direct on 01952 603231 or email him at
- John Casewell
  Annual General Meeting 2006

Ray Thomas (right), captain of Division 3 Champions Market Drayton, is presented with the new Neil Allen Trophy by Roy and Sue Allen. 28/06/06

Picture courtesy of Paula Davies.
County are Midlands Champions By TOBY NEAL 28/02/06

Shropshire are Midlands chess champions — despite a defeat at the hands of a strong Warwickshire team.
The Salopians lost 10-6 to Warwickshire at Shifnal Scout Hut on Saturday.
Captain Windsor Peck said: “Although the laurels of victory go to our three winners John Cox, David Everington and Nick Graham, it should be remembered that special thanks are due to everyone who fought a gallant fight, all against stronger opponents. “We were outgraded on all boards except the top two. With four of our first line players absent this was a magnificent effort.”
Meanwhile, the Shropshire team for players graded under 100 will also be bidding for glory, in the under-100s competition. They meet Nottinghamshire in the MCCU Midlands final on March 18.

(Left) Captain Windsor Peck watches the board 1 clash between John Cox (Shrops) and Dan Mason (Warwicks). This was a welcome return for the Shropshire top board who last played for the county some twenty two years ago!
Shifnal & Telford Win Wolverhampton League Title
Shifnal & Telford have regained the Wolverhampton league title. Last won in 1998/9. The team comprises of some of the leading players from the Telford area. This year's team was Simon Fowler, Nick Rutter, Gavyn Cooper, John Footner, Dave Gostelow and Colin Roberts (captain). Due to other commitments the reality was that we permed four of the above and a couple of the other regular members of Shifnal & Telford's Shropshire league teams (who represent the B team in the Wolverhampton league) to make up the team.
Despite the apparent strength of the team Walsall Kipping looked odds on for the title with two games to play but a draw and a loss in their last two games let us jump above them. Colin Roberts
Newport take league title By TOBY NEAL 04/04/06
Newport have won the Shropshire Chess League for the first time since 1999, ending a seven-year stranglehold by Shrewsbury-based clubs. Newport A were able to overpower Coddon A and gain the two points they needed to secure the title. For the second season running the championship and key promotion issues turned on the last matches of the season.
Shrewsbury had kept up the pressure to the last by beating Telepost B, but their joy was tempered when they learned that Simon Fowler, the county’s strongest player, would not be playing for Coddon against Newport the following evening. However, as Newport were without Tom Pym, perhaps the absentees can be considered to have cancelled each other out.

Division 2 champions Telepost C will be joined in the top flight by Church Stretton who, with the help of new signings Nick and Louis Graham, just pipped Wellington A 3-2 in the vital last match.
Market Drayton are Division 3 champions finishing just one point ahead of Oswestry even though the latter have the better "goal" difference.
Shropshire's First International Master
Congratulations to John Cox on winning the CCF Premiership International Tournament with 7 / 9 during week ending 2/09/05 to gain his final IM norm. Cox, a former Shropshire County Champion and regular competitor in the Wrekin Congress, has maintained his links with the county although now based in London. Having recently returned to serious chess, this is a major milestone to add to his already impressive chess CV.
Bizarre start then it’s a day of glory By TOBY NEAL 21 March 2006
Shropshire’s under-100 team have covered themselves in glory by becoming Midlands champions despite a hiccup which saw them begin hostilities in the final against Nottinghamshire with three players missing.
“It was quite a bizarre start,” said captain Ian Davies. “Our board two player, Andy Tunks , did not turn up. Luckily we managed to get in touch with Alex Taylor from Newport and he agreed to get there — it was played at Staffordshire University in Stafford — as quickly as he could.
“We also had two players who were about 45 minutes late because they got lost. Sellick Davies was bringing himself and Chris Lewis. They both had a lot of time to make up and both managed to win.
“Nottinghamshire outgraded us. They are quite a good team and had their full strength team out. We were very pleased with the result.”
The 7-5 victory means Shropshire are the Midlands Counties Chess Union champions in the section for players graded under 100, which is a B or C team club standard.
Division 2 Champions
The Telepost C team which finished 4 points clear of its nearest rivals in Division 2 this season.
Left to right Steve Jones (captain), John Liddell, John Westhead, Keith Tabner, and Brian Holford.
Joe Adderley and John Casewell were missing when this picture was taken.

Picture courtesy of Peter Kitchen - as published in his weekly Shrewsbury Chronicle chess column.
Thomas Pym Wins Ampleforth... Again
Thomas Pym has done it again. He has taken the winner’s laurels at the Ampleforth Junior Masters tournament, repeating his success of two years ago.
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