Western Cape Schools Individual Chess Championships U7-U11 & U20

The brand new Louwville High School in Vredenburg was the venue for this year’s Western Cape Championships for the smaller players and the U20’s from 19-21 May 2017.

Full results from Chess-Results:  U7 Boys  U7 Girls   U9 Boys   U9 Girls   U11 Boys   U11 Girls   U20 Boys   U20 Girls

Some pictures from the prizegiving ceremony of the medal winners and Western Cape Schools Chess Teams for these age groups.  Spot the Stellenbosch faces!


Western Cape Schools Individual Chess Championships U13-U18

This weekend of 12-14 May 2017 finally saw the Championships taking place in Newlands, after much uncertainty.

Congratulations to all the participants – and the medal winners in the follow age groups:

Under 13 Boys  Under 13 Girls   Under 15 Boys   Under 15 Girls   Under 18 Boys   Under 18 Girls

Here are some pictures of the medal winners – with thanks to Uhlan Lackay who was there!

1st BRICS Chess Masters

Henry Steel from Stellenbosch and Daniel Cawdery will be representing South Africa in Baoji in the 1st BRICS Chess Masters, a 10-player round-robin rapid tournament taking place from 23-26 April, 2017 in Baoji, China.

Ten players, two each from the five countries Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, hence the name BRICS, compete for $36,000 in prize money, with $8,000 for first prize.

Players receive 25 minutes for the entire game, plus a 10-second increment starting from move one.

Follow the games live on Chess24

Steinitz Festival 2017

The Easter Weekend saw the 40th Anniversary Steinitz Chess Festival taking place at the Proteaville Recreation Centre.

The Stellenbosch players that took part did us proud – Corne Briedenhann came 4th and Nathan Amsterdam 6th in the Prestige Section.

In the A Division Daniel Frank and Ulrich Wolff ended in the Top 10. Ulrich also received the Ratings Prize.

Rebecca Selkirk ended 14th in the Blits on the Thursday and Jacobus Geyser second in the Under 10 Section on Saturday.

The prizewinners


For more pictures see Steinitz Facebook page

Cape Winelands Schools Prestige 2017

The second round of the Cape Winelands Schools Trials took place at Goudini High School in Rawsonville on 1-2 April 2017.

Results from Chess-Results:  U7  U9 Boys  U9 Girls  U11 Boys  U11 Girls  U13 Boys  U13 Girls  U15 Boys  U15 Girls  U18 Boys  U18 Girls

NB – Schools please keep and eye out for emails from CWSC Management with the final Cape Winelands Team Lists and Arrangements.

Here are some pictures of the wonderful venue and the medal winners. Thank you to Andries Nieuwoudt, Uhlan Lackay, Norman Palmer and Zu Neethling for sharing your pics!

Important Chess Dates Second Term 2017

Please add the following to your chess calendars, and remember to treat the dates and venues as provisional, until confirmed by the Organizers/LOC.

The 2017 SA Junior Closed is happening at Kopanong Conference Centre in Benoni this coming week.

From 13-17 April the The Steinitz Chess Festival will take place at the Proteaville Recreation Centre, Bellville South.

Overberg Chess Federation is hosting a 60/60 Rated Tournament at Overberg Primary School in Caledon on the 22nd of April 2017.

On 6 May 2017 Strategema Chess Club in Robertson will host a 6 Round 30/30 Rapid Tournament.

Overberg Chess Federation is hosting another 60/60 Rated Tournament at Overberg Primary School in Caledon on 6 May 2017.

DCAS Western Cape Schools Individual Championships for U13, U15 and U18, will now take place in CAPE TOWN (venue to be confirmed) from 12-14 May 2017. (This is later than the previous provisional date)

Rhenish Primary Schools is hosting their annual Schools Invitational Tournament on the 13th of May 2017.

The Western Cape Schools Individual Championships for U7, U9, U11 and U20, will now take place in VREDENBURG (venue to be confirmed) from 19-21 May 2017. (This is earlier than the previous provisional date)

The SA Open is to take place from 30 June 2017 to 8 July 2017, but there are no further particulars available yet.

The Paul Roos Open Chess Championship in association with the Stellenbosch Chess Club: Celebrating Chess in Stellenbosch 17-19 March 2017

I guess all great things start with a (crazy) idea. So, when Chrystal Samuel from PRG mentioned that PRG wants to host an Open chess tournament, the Stellenbosch Chess Club immediately agreed to assist. Maybe it was a case of fools rush in where angels fear to tread, but we were convinced it would be great to host a rated tournament in Stellenbosch that could cater for youth development and novices to the Elite players. Stellenbosch of course has a rich history of great chess players with IM Henry Steel just one of many. Schools chess is also alive and well with Ikaya, Eikestad and Idas Valley Primary Schools, and Stellenbosch High School all taking part and PRG winning the Under 19 Division in the Western Cape Top Schools Tournament in 2016.

So, the fools (or maybe angels?) went ahead and planned the tournament in just over a month. We were incredibly fortunate that PRG made the fabulous Markotter Sports Complex, traditionally known for rugby, available and we had a dedicated LOC who went above and beyond the call of duty to plan the event. There were many flutters of anxiety along the way of which, “if we host it – will the players come?”, being foremost in many of our minds.

Chess Western Province supported us by providing clocks, sets and even a visit by the President of Chess Western Province, Dr Deon Solomons, on the opening night.  They also added to the profile of the tournament by adding the tournament as a qualification tournament for Western Province (Federation) colours.

As the registrations in all sections skyrocketed during the last few days of registration and even on the first day of play, our fears were allayed. We had a brilliant cast of 229 players in all sections, including players from as far afield as Eden and from the ACL. The official opening and welcome of the tournament was done by Mr Stephan Jordaan, PRG first team rugby coach and head of sports.

The eight players in the Elite Section included big names and was fiercely contested in a round robin with two players, Michael James (the winner) and Daud Amini on 5 points, closely followed by Stellenbosch local Heinrich Basson on 4.5 points. The Prestige A-Section was one of the strongest fields seen lately in any Western Cape Tournament, with the five top players all ending on 5 points and the top order being decided by (the dreaded) Buchholz. In final order, they were Nathan Amsterdam (another Stellenbosch local), Cherwin Kleinsmidt, Jordan Vester, Veroe September and Andreas de Jager (who also got the prize for the best youth player in this section). Rebecca Selkirk, also from Stellenbosch, showed the boys her mettle, ending in 6th place overall.

The B-Section had a clear winner, one and a half points ahead of the pack in Corné Briedenhann, a PRG player. Keagan Palmer, another PRG player, placed third, with Matthew Saunders second and Migael van Schaik as the best junior. The C-Section, with a whopping 140 players rated below 1200, clearly indicates the need for rated tournaments around Stellenbosch. Matthew Lee won this division with 6.5 points, followed by Christian Maxwell, Nathaniel Nkuna, Sharné Kruger (best female) and Antonie Steenkamp (best junior) all on 6 points.

The D-section with the U10 players only playing on the Saturday morning, was as always, a treat with lots of smiles, tears and illegal moves… but that is how everyone learns.  Arbiter William Coetzee and Stellenbosch chess mom and stalwart, Sonja Jacobs, assisted with these budding stars (and their parents). Jordan Randelhoff from Rhenish Primary was victorious with a perfect 7 out of 7 games. Two other locals, Zak Steyn from Eikestad, and Earl Erasmus from Kylemore, took second and third places.

The tournament ran like clockwork largely because of the great management skills of the chief arbiter, Mr Ricardo Minnaar, ably assisted by Mr Andrew Talmarkes and Mr William Coetzee. The Elite, Prestige A-and B-Sections also played in an air-conditioned venue upstairs, with a tea and coffee station, and a beautiful view over the Stellenbosch mountains (not that they had much time to admire the view during the games…). The younger (and some older) kids had the wonderful rugby fields to play soccer and a few cricket and rugby friendlies between games, while their parents could sit under a shady tree or watch them from the pavilion.

The prize giving was a highlight with Mr Neville Rothman of Paul Roos as MC, Mr Eldo Smart, President of Chess South Africa, doing a word of congratulations and IM Henry Steel handing over the medals. There were many happy faces with a total prize money of over R8 000 – also for the best female and junior players. PRG did well with CM Andrew Flores Bartoli participating in the A-Section, the brilliant performance of Corné Briedenhann (first place) and Keagan Palmer (third place) in the B-Section and Justin Korkie (best senior PRG player) and Odin Mostert (best junior PRG player) in the C-Section. Alex van der Merwe also received a special mention as the youngest player in the PRG chess club participating in the B-Section.

As the sun literally set on Sunday night over the Stellenbosch mountains, it was a fitting conclusion for a brilliant event. The LOC from PRG and the Stellenbosch Chess Club was exhausted but incredibly happy that the event was a success. We have already said to each other that next year it will even be bigger and better. So mark March next year on your chess calendars for the second installment of the PRG open in association with the Stellenbosch Chess Club. You do not want to miss it!!!

And for those of you in and around Stellenbosch, the Stellenbosch Chess Club meets every Thursday evening from 18h30 and chess players of all ages are welcome. If you want to stay connected, please send your contact details to Ulrich Wolff at uw2@sun.ac.za  or Freek Geyser at fgeyser@npa.gov.za.

For a full list of the winners and pictures, see https://chessstellenbosch.wordpress.com/blog/

Chess greetings

The LOC (Chrystal Samuel, Carla Briedenhann, Sisteen and Freek Geyser, Andries Nieuwoudt, Antoinette van der Merwe and Ulrich Wolff)