It’s check-mate as new kids on block take title

QEGS pupil David Scott who was a member of the winning team
QEGS pupil David Scott who was a member of the winning team

A pupil at Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School in Horncastle is celebrating success as a chess champion - against all the odds.

David Scott was a member of the team of four children who entered the Junior Four Nations Chess League - and promptly won the Division Two in their first season.

The team - the ‘Yellow-Bellied Knights’ - won the title at the final weekend of the Junior Four Nations Chess League (formerly the British League) at the Hinckley Island Hotel in Leicestershire.

All the other teams were from bigger clubs with many of their players receiving grandmaster coaching sessions every week.

In contrast, the Knights are a group of four children who have become friends at tournaments they have played in around Lincolnshire. They don’t have any club backing, or professional coaching.

They secured the title with four wins and a draw out from five rounds. The tournament is for U18s, and the ages of the Knights are 14, 13, 10 and 8.

During the rounds, Ian Scott, the team’s captain/manager, said officials from other clubs were keen to learn about the Knights.

He said: “We were the new kids on the block and were certainly ruffling the feathers of the established big hitters in junior chess.

“It was quite a weekend, with everyone contributing to the team effort. We’re proud of them.”

The first round saw a victory over Barnet, one of the top powerhouses of junior chess. Round two featured a convincing win against the top girls team. Marion’s Maids from Nottinghamshire.

The third round was a hard fought draw against Witney Brown Jack, from Wiltshire.

The fourth round brought an excellent win over the Welsh Dragons.

That meant everything hinged on the final match against ‘big hitters’ Manchester A.

A win would see the Knights win the division, a draw or loss would hand the title to Manchester A.

And, it was the Knights who kept their cool with Neelay Sant (Boston Grammar School), Kishore Murugesh (Tower Road Academy) and Nicholas Lees (Malcolm Sargent School) helping QEGS pupil David clinch the title.

Nicholas and David won their matches with Kishore claiming a vital draw in the very last game.