Monday 25 February 2013

2013 ACT Championship wrap

Just a short follow up to last weeks ACT Championship. 4 years ago the format was changed to a 9 round double weekender. The numbers have hovered around 30 players for each of the tournament, which is about halfway between 'scraping by' and 'fantastic'. Of course there were twice as many ACT players who could have played than actually did play, but this has always been the way. As with previous years IM Andrew Brown and FM Junta Ikeda (the strongest active players in the ACT) supported the event, even in the absence of the players closest to them in rating.
Of the players who did play, there were three particularly notable performances. Aelfric Gardiner-Garden scored 5/9, playing on the top boards for most of the tournament. Despite a rating of 1311, he drew with top seed Junta Ikeda, beat a number of higher rated opponents, and was a few moves away from finishing in third place in his final round game. Joe Lee came into the tournament as an unrated/unknown and also scored 5/9. He had played tournament chess around 30 years ago, but to do so well in one of his first tournaments back was a real achievement. Erick McPherson was another lower rated player who seemed to be on or around the top boards for most of the event. Although he ended up on 4.5, he did so the hard way.
The tournament itself ran very smoothly. This year I was assisted in my arbiting duties by Lee Forace who did an excellent job thought. There were no significant incidents to speak off, although players handwriting could always be improved. In one of the games the score sheets seem to indicate that on move 3 Black played a6, then much much later played a5 in response White's b5. As White then played bxa6 in reply, there must have been a clerical error!


Jim said...

"although players handwriting could always be improved"

Stop providing them with crayons, Shaun.

Shaun Press said...

In fairness to the players, a shortage of scoresheets required me to go digging for scoresheets from the 1991(!) Mercantile Mutual Grand Prix series. This was from a time when scoresheets A5 in size and contained 60 moves.