As regular readers will know, I play chess fairly seriously. I'm a member of Southampton Chess Club and we're involved in a league with other nearby clubs. The league season is just about finished now and sadly my team has supped the bitter gall of relegation. It's funny how things have worked out, as last year we finished comfortably in mid-table. The problem is that our two top teams were both in Division 1 of the league this year so they couldn't share players. Once someone had played for either our A or B team, they were no longer eligible for the other. So the C team lost our strongest two regular players from last season and the rest of us couldn't make up for it.
You get a grade from the English Chess Federation once you've been playing club chess for a season and I think in every league match this season our opponents outgraded us, often by quite a wide margin. So we were always likely to be in danger of relegation, unless two or three team members had really good seasons. No-one did terribly, but none of us did that well either. Still, chin up lads; we ought to get on much better in Division 4 next season!
In other chess-related news, Norwegian chess genius and part-time fashion model Magnus Carlsen was featured in the Independent earlier this week...
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