Sheffield & District Chess Association

e-Newsletter, July 2021





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4th Kelham Island 15-Minute Tournament – 18/07/2021 - Entries invited


The football will be over, the tennis will have finished, so what better will there be to do than enter the next Kelham Island mini-tournaments?


The format is groups of 6 or 4 players (according to number of entrants), each in a group playing each other (hence 5 or 3 rounds), with each player having 15 minutes on the clock, with a 5-second increment per move played.  Each group plays at a different venue within the general Kelham Island area.


Geoff Brown is now taking entries – as soon as possible, please, to facilitate planning, booking the requisite number of playing locations, and so on.  His e-mail reads:


Hi all


I'm currently taking entries for the next otb event at Kelham Island which will be on Sunday, 18th July.


So far, the confirmed entries are: Barker, Brennan, Brown, Holroyd-Doveton, Sturman and Wills.  Frost and Hails are possibilities.


If you intend to play that day, then can you let me know as soon as possible please, so that I can plan the venues.


Best wishes


Geoff Brown


3rd Kelham Island 15-Minute Tournament – 20/07/2021


Entries were down on the 2nd event, which organiser Geoff Brown attributed to reasons including the clash with Father’s Day, the weather forecast (“Light rain and a gentle breeze” being forecast by the BBC weather website), and the clash with the British Chess Problem Society AGM (which took out Brian Stephenson).


There were only three tournaments (each separately located), with Nathaniel HolroydDoveton (at the Millowners Arms), Craig Chatterton (at the Saw Grinders Union) and Jonathan Arnott (at the Yellow Arch Studio) being the respective winners, on 2½, 2½ and 3 points respectively out of 3 points.


And “No”, there are no apostrophes in the names of these venues.


More entries would have allowed 5-round events, as had been managed before.


Result details and some photographs can be found on the S&DCA website at

where there is also a historical note on Kelham Island, and an earlier chess connection.


Hope Valley Tournament 2021


Older readers will remember when the Hope Valley Tournament was run by the late Hope Valley Chess Club, in Hathersage, Derbyshire, notably at the Scotchman’s Pack.  (They know about apostrophes in Hathersage).  This year’s organiser can remember playing in the event after it had moved to Fox House, just inside the Sheffield and Yorkshire boundary with Derbyshire.


This year the event was organised at the Saw Grinders Union at Kelham Island, on 20/06/2021.


The winner was Andrew Ledger, who scored 7 out of 7 in the “group” stage, and then beat Miles EdwardsWright in the semi-final, and Yang Guo in the final.


Fuller results, and a photo of the finalists, is to be found on the S&DCA website at


Games from the On-Line League


The website editor has been trying to capture games played in the on-line league to put on the website so that they can be played through on screen.  This requires the editor remembering when each round is taking place, which does not always happen.


Originally the aim was to spot interesting or well-played games, but the number of games published began to increase.  For round 7, all games from Division 1 and the Lucky Dip were published (the latter because SASCA beat Nomads).  Then, for round 8, all games except those in Division3 were published, irrespective of quality.  This might seem hard on Division 3 players, so, for round 9, all 32 games played were published, “warts ‘n all”.


Links to the games from rounds 7, 8 and 9 can be found at

7 -,

8 -,

9 -


Two Locally Written Books


Two somewhat different books, aimed at different target audiences, have been published recently, by Sheffield-resident authors.


The Queen's Gambit - Accepted! by Jonathan Arnott and Rosie Irwin is primarily a beginner’s guide to chess for adults.  It turns out the title does not refer to the chess opening but to the 7-episode mini-series of that name which was released on Netflix from 23/10/2020.  It was watching this which led co-author Rosie Irwin to take up chess!  For a write-up see the S&DCA website at


Once you have read and inwardly digested that book, and got in a lot of practice, you may be ready for the second book.


1.e4 – Coffeehouse Repertoire – Volume 1 by Gawain Jones is the first of two volumes aimed at the devotee of 1. e4, aiming to offer challenging (hence “coffeehouse”) but nevertheless sound lines against Black’s defences.  This Volume 1 covers the Sicilian, Caro-Kann, Scandinavian (i.e. Centre Counter) and Alekhine’s Defences.  Volume two is to cover 1...e5, and the French, Pirc, Modern, and other Defences.  For much more waffle, as well as the game in which Thomas Wilson Barnes beat Paul Morphy by meeting Morphy’s 1.e4 with 1. … f6, see the S&DCA website at


Yorkshire Chess Association


Sheffield’s team captains in the Yorkshire league should have been contacted by the YCA Competitions Controller regarding the possible restart of the (over-the-board) Yorkshire league.  The idea of any kind of YCA AGM seems to have been put on hold for the moment, so some sort of YCA Executive meeting is being considered.


At the present point in the development of attempts to ease Covid mitigation measures, and in view of the predictable developments in levels of infection and so on, this comes too early for many people.  However, the Competitions Controller feels that if things are to kick of relatively normally in October, then he has to start initiating things around now.


It may be that chess at local-league level needs to fumble its way to “normality”, or the “new normality”, first, and that only then will it be feasible for the traditional Yorkshire league to follow.  Perhaps some sort of transitional format of Yorkshire over-the-board league season is needed.




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