EPSCA U11 Final 2015

Kent take joint first place in the U11 EPSCA National Final!

Wow, what a day and what a superb result!


Huge congratulations to our young Kent U11 team for taking an extremely hard fought first place at the U11 National finals against some of the strongest opposition faced in many years. It was a nail biting finale to the EPSCA 2014/15 chess season and words cannot possibly do justice to the dramas, tribulations  and the excitement of the day. It was a pleasure to see the true Kent team spirit emerge as events unfolded at Nottingham High School on the 9 May 2015.


A big well done to each and every one of our players who all dug deep and stepped up for the occasion, playing their part in securing this hugely memorable result for the county. It was a day to truly be proud to be a part of Kent Junior Chess.


The victorious team, in alphabetical order (a tribute and our appreciation to the huge effort from all of our players), was as follows:


Robert Akeya-Price, Ben Barton, Adit Bhavesh, Sam Cartwright, Nikhil Chidipothu, David Dallakyan, Oliver Dobson, Orla Dorman, Alex Garfield, Huseyin Gueriane, Annalise Hansen, Navieinaah Haridas, Aditya Jain, Viktor Jamroz, Ximan Mao (Captain), Charlie Metcalfe, Aryan Narayan, Freddie Nunn, Rajeiv Ratnesan, Ranesh Ratnesan, Kiran Shiatis, Mahuaa Verma, Mikey Watson and Haolin Zhao.


Thank you also to Kimball Catling, Thomas Crawley-Boevey and Moad Shamekh for their part in helping us through the qualify stages at the Zonal.


There were 16 Associations taking part on the day, which had qualified out of the original 26, all competing for the coveted U11 National Title over three rounds.

The team spirit of Kent’s young guns was high, with the players gathering in the morning full of excitement and anticipation, eager for the team talks and to get stuck into the first round. It was a team with a good combination of experience, enthusiasm and youth; some playing in their first U11 national final and some in their fifth and last, all conducting themselves with the utmost grace and maturity.


Right from the go, it was clear that our players were not there to merely make up the numbers but to compete at the very highest level; with a solid score of 15 out of 20 in the first round. This score placed us in a four way tie for first with Oxfordshire, Wey Valley and Barnet.

The Kent team showed their strength in round 2 with an excellent 17.5 out of 20, a score which could only be matched by Barnet, the two teams now tying in first place with 32.5 points each, with Sussex and Wey Valley close behind in joint third with 30 points.


It was all to play for, in round three. The team talks were crucial in re-energising our players; it was clear that no one wanted to go home empty handed.


Wey Valley and Kent started the third round strongly, Kent momentarily surging ahead. Barnet then rallied and pushed hard towards the end, with Sussex faltering slightly under the strain. The lead constantly changed hands as each result came in. With just a few games left playing in the hall, it was between us, Barnet and Wey Valley with less than 1.5 points separating the three teams.


Our players finished with a strong 15.5 points out of 20, bringing our total to 48. Wey Valley finished with 16.5, not quite enough to close the gap, leaving them slightly adrift with 46.5, but Barnet managed 15.5 as well, equalling our overall score of 48.


Previously at the qualifying zonal back in March, only a tie break could separate Barnet and Kent. This time, not even the tie-break could split the teams - with both teams having an equal number of wins and draws. The team managers from both Kent and Barnet got together and magnanimously agreed the National title would be shared between the two Associations – with Kent taking the first place individual trophies and Barnet taking the overall Chessboard Winners Trophy to be engraved.

Team results were as follows:

1          Kent 48            (46 wins)

=          Barnet 48 (46 wins)

3          Wey Valley 46.5

4          Sussex 42.5

5          Nottinghamshire 37.5

6          Hertfordshire 36.5

7          Oxford 34.5

8          Essex 31

9          Richmond 29.5

10        Yorkshire 20.5 (17 wins)

=          Berkshire 20.5 (17 wins)

12        Oldham 20

13        Cheshire & N. Wales 17.5

14        Lancashire 17

15        Northants 16

16        Manchester 14.5


Full results have been published on:




A huge thank you to all the players, parents, supporting siblings, GM Chris Ward (for his inspiration), Rohan Shiatis (for his coaching and team talks at the zonal), our president Anil Anilkumar, our team managers Andrew and Krishna Shiatis, all the great coaches working hard behind the scenes in Kent, the team at Nottingham Junior Chess, to EPSCA and to Barnet and Kent for their superb sportsmanship.


Finally a big thank you to all the great volunteers at the KJCA who help to keep the Kent Juniors consistently strong every year; this being our 7th EPSCA national title over the three annual EPSCA events (U11s, U9s and the U11 Girls) in the last seven years and our 15th top three finish in the last eight years! A phenomenal achievement! It has been a pleasure to have been a part of the managing team/KJCA for this period.

Best wishes to all and a big thank you from

Andrew and Krishna

U11 KJCA Team Managers