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CivicChessMan
05-04-2021, 06:54 PM
The 2021 North Island Championship was hosted by the Wellington Chess Club over Easter. This meant cramming in two rounds per day but that didn't deter 92 players from turning up. Hot favourite to win the tournament was GM Gawain Jones (ENG). He duly obliged, scoring a picket fence which included wins over Felix Xie, Scott Wastney, Russell Dive, Daniel Gong and Anthony Ker. So who would win the North Island? Going into round 8, seven players had 5.5 points with another four on 5 points. Ker had the mountainous task of overcoming Jones and on board 2 Mike Steadman vs Scott Wastney ended in a draw. Felix Xie beat Russell Dive and Athula Russell won against Ryan Winter to move to 6.5 points and become joint North Island Champions for 2021. Felix Xie lost to Gawain Jones in round 4 then scored 3.5 points including a draw with Nic Croad in round 6. Athula Russell had an early setback in round 3 and went mostly unnoticed until round 7 when he drew with Anthony Ker.

Final Standings: Jones 8; Xie and Russell 6.5; Wastney, Gong, Steadman and Gino Thornton 6. Nine players finished on 5.5 points including Croad, Dive and Ker.

92 players surely must be a record for the North Island. I have results from 1989 onwards and the previous highest number was 60 in 1989!

Craig_Hall
05-04-2021, 08:49 PM
1989 is well before my time as an active tournament player, but 92 is a monstrous number for any NZ tournament.

Adamski
05-04-2021, 11:36 PM
92 is a terrific turnout. Well done the organisers and the players and big congrats to GM Gawain on winning the tournament so convincingly.