From 8-10 April, the B.C.A. went to the Sleep Inn, Newton Aycliffe, near Darlington, for our Annual General Meeting Tournament. This was a late
change of venue after difficulties arose with the Elmbank Hotel, York. The
B.C.A. wishes to thank Stan and Jan Lovell for making the arrangements with the
Sleep Inn at such short notice. Fears that the location would deter entries
proved unfounded: with 22 players in the Open and 8 in the Minor, with
friends and guides too, the turnout was good. Players included 5 from the
Republic of Ireland and 2 from Southampton University, the latter at their
first B.C.A. event.
Controller Gerry Walsh and Julie Leonard did their usual excellent job.
Gerry deserves particular credit as his cousin Clive Hazell, a B.C.A. Associate
member who attended many recent tournaments, died during the weekend.
In Round 1 (Friday evening), most results were as expected by grading, with
wins for top seeds Tyson Mordue, Chris Ross, and Steve Hilton in the Open.
In the Minor, Shirley Watkins, Tony Murray and Orlando Sobers won their
games, but John Osborne held Jim Cuthbert to a draw.
In Round 2 (Saturday morning), Tyson, Chris, and Steve won again. Sean
Loftus and Les Whittle kept up with them by also maintaining perfect scores.
In the Minor, Tony and Shirley also notched up second wins.
Saturday afternoon saw a break from play for our AGM, efficiently chaired by
Alec Crombie and concluded in under 2 hours.
In Round 3 (Saturday evening), Chris moved into sole lead in the Open by
defeating Sean Loftus. Draws for Tyson and Steve (against Les Whittle and Colin Chambers respectively) left them half a point behind. Alec joined the
chasing pack with a win against Richard Murphy. In the Minor, Shirley beat
Tony and became the only player still on 100%.
Round 4 (Sunday morning) saw Chris maintain his perfect score by defeating Steve. Alec and Les drew their game, allowing Tyson to move into clear second place by beating Colin. Meanwhile, Shirley drew with new member Mr
Hodgson from Southampton University, thereby retaining first place, half a point ahead of Orlando Sobers.
Round 5 (Sunday afternoon) witnessed draws on the top four boards in the Open. As a result, Chris was the clear winner with an impressive 4.5/5. Tyson came second on 4/5. Sean, Les, Alec, Norman Wragg and Michael Delaney came equal third with 3.5/5. Richard Murphy, Roger Waters, George Plechaty, Peter Price, Yan Kit Chan and Mr McQuillan from Southampton shared the under-100 grading prize with 2/5.
In the Minor, Shirley's victory against John Osborne gave her first place with 4.5/5, half a point ahead of Orlando and 1.5 ahead of Tony.
This was another successful tournament for the B.C.A.. We thank the Durham Freemasons for donating the prize fund, Northumbrian Water for their financial support, and the Darlington Lions for invaluable help with transport.