The re-scheduled “West of Scotland” took place at the “Next Generation Sports Club” in Anniesland, Glasgow, over Saturday/Sunday on June 7 th /8 th . Three rounds were played on the Saturday, which proved one too many for a few competitors. The second round was enlivened by the strains of, “Bob the Builder” and other similar ditties sung enthusiastically by two score children enjoying their Saturday dance class next door, but aside from the occasional thwack of squash rackets, it proved to be a pleasant venue. At various times, Sam Collins and family could be observed paddling up and down the pool. Numbers were down - no doubt due to the timing. So, next year, it is planned to shift the date back to February.
Steve Mannion won the Premier for the umpteenth time, obviously aiming to over-take Fairhurst's record. Steve led from the start, taking a draw against Alan Grant in the last round. Equal second was Alan Grant, Alan Tate & Daniel McGowan (4/5).
Juniors, Daniel Rocks & Matthew O'Donnell shared the grading prize.
In the Challengers, there was a 3-way tie for first (4/5) between Andy McQueen, John Dempsey and Ian Campbell. John had taken a point off the Ian in the penultimate round but agreed a draw against Andy in an unclear position in the final round. Meanwhile, Ian won his final game to re-join the leaders. Walter Pearson's opponent finally gave up the long struggle to win with Q+N vs. Q+B giving Walter the crucial half-point needed for the grading prize.
The Major was shared by David Cubitt & Fraser Taylor (4/5), the latter winning a marathon last-round game which ended in a plausible but disallowed draw claim when only B+P vs. R+P remained. Here, to prevent family strife, the grading prize was shared between Alice and Stuart Lampard: another excellent performance by the youngster (and her dad).
The arbiters had few problems aside, that is, from an unsubstantiated claim of an illegal “en passant capture” of a cup of coffee left en prise by Hamish Glen – the evidence had sadly long gone. Credits: the arbiters were; Phil Thomas, Sam Collins, Trevor Davies & Peter Devenny. Sam Collins & John Dempsey organized the event. Peter and Anne Woods (www.chesssuppliers.co.uk) provided the bookstall.