Wednesday, 23 May 2007

Small town, big moves

The ACT Junior Chess League has been running its Primary Schools Open tournament over the last 2 weeks. Due to the large numbers of teams being entered the competition is split into 6 zones, with the top 4-6 teams from each zone qualifying for the finals.
Today was the Gungahlin Zone competition. The competition is not restricted to Canberra schools only, but extends into surrounding New South Wales. This allows schools from surrounding country areas to enter teams.
In fact the school with the biggest enrollment was St Joseph's from Boorowa. Boorowa is a small country town about 120km north of Canberra, which equates to a 1 and half hour drive each way. Factor in the traveling time for some kids to get into town (up to an hour) and you can see how impressive it is that they even entered.
Even more impressive was the score of their No. 1 team, the Boorowa Blues. They scored 27/28, dropping only two draws, and winning by 7 points. Third place was also taken by a team from the school, meaning that from a town of 1,200 people, they managed to fill 2 of the 4 qualifying spots.
So nest time you worry that taking you kids to a chess competition will take you 10 minutes out of your way, think of the effort that St Josephs Boorowa put in every time they want to play in a chess competition.

1 comment:

LIbby said...

Boorowa also finished second in the Girls' Primary event in Term 1.

They have a fantastic principal at the school who achieved some good results with the St Thomas the Apostle School (Kambah) before deciding to take his family "bush."

We also get a strong contingent from Bungendore, not quite so far to travel but still a big commitment from the school and families.

I think it proves that you need motivation and enthusiasm before you need ever worry about special coaches and programs in schools. A lot can be achieved with basic knowlege of the rules and the time and effort of a parent/teacher to introduce kids to the game.