Friday, 3 August 2018

Being British

There was a time when 'British' in the British Championship stood for the British Empire. Commonwealth players had the same eligibility to play as UK citizens, with the title occasionally heading off to the colonies. This eventually came to an end when an influx of strong overseas players made it seem like a Commonwealth Championship, rather than a English/Scotland/Wales affair.
This years Championship looks to have done a great job of attracting most of the strong UK players to Hull. Fourteen GM's are in the field, including Michael Adams, Gawain Jones, David Howell and Luke McShane. Interestingly there are a number of non UK players taking part, but instead of being from India,Canada etc they are from various European countries. I assume that this is due to permanent residency/citizenship eligibility, rather than any ironic attachment to European Union work rules.
Australia even has a representative in the tournament with soon to be GM Justin Tan. At the two thirds mark he is on 4/6, winning two games and drawing four. Adams and Jones share the lead on 5/6, and play in round 7. David Howell is half a point back, but has already played the two leaders (both games were drawn). Another player on 4.5 is GM Nick Pert who has had to work very hard, playing 3 of the 4 longest games in the event, winning a 90 move game, while drawing two others in 105 and 133 moves respectively.

Murphy,Conor E (2336) - Tan,Justin Hy (2481)
105th British Championships Hull City Hall, Hull (3.7), 30.07.2018

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