Staffordshire Junior News

2024 Staffordshire Junior Championship

 The 2024 Staffordshire Junior Championship will be held on Sunday 1st December at Stafford Grammar School, Burton Manor Road, Stafford, ST18 9AT. It will be 6 rounds of rapid play with not only cash prizes but the opportunity to become the County Champion at each age group. The entry fee is £15.  For further details and the Entry form please see the Staffordshire Junior Chess website.


New Website and Staffordshire Junior Championship Results

The results of the 2023 Staffordshire Junior Championship are on the new Staffordshire Junior website.

National Youth Championships

 On the 4th November 2023 Staffordshire sent 3 teams to the National Youth Championships in Oxford. We were represented in all 3 sections Under 12, Under 14 and Under 18. Thanks go to the Jays Travel & Daughter minibuses who transported most of the players as well as a number of travelling parents. This was one of the biggest contingents to play in such an event for a long time.

 Our Under 12 side was very much a development team as most had hardly played many tournaments and the results showed. We knew this before going and the majority will still be eligible next year, so we have time to improve.

 The Under 14 team had mostly started playing pre-covid and were much more experienced, and we had some new exciting additions. With a resounding 6/6 in the last round, we managed to shoot up the rankings and come joint 4th which is an amazing achievement. Isaac Stanley scored 3/3 on board 2 as the team's top performer.

 The stars of the show were the Under 18 team where we were very strong, we even turned up with a reserve to permit team rotation. Our top 2 boards Dylan & Joe took the brunt of the opposing team's best players and allowed Stephen & Sean to mop up the middle order. Momin, Julian & Rhys did great jobs on the lower boards and if you include the reserve match Rhys came away with 3/3.

 With 2 teams running away with it at the top, we went into the last round joint 4th with a team half a point ahead of us, both those teams scored badly in the last round as we picked up 4 points to overtake them and come away with 3rd and a trophy for each player! Well done to the Under 18's in this national event!

 Our top performance though goes to a 'junior' who isn't going to be a junior much longer playing on board 4 scoring 3/3 was Sean Tavener... we wish him well as he moves on to adult life! Before he does though we might see all of these players fight it out in the Staffordshire junior championships on November 19th.


A new Staffordshire Junior site is being created.

The Staffordshire secretary for Junior Chess is Jonathan Blackburn please contact at or 07891 600114.

Staffordshire Junior Championships 2022

On Sunday 4th December over 70 juniors (plus family's!) converged on the picturesque village of Abbots Bromley to take part in the Staffordshire junior chess championships. Competition was fierce with county titles up for grabs and after 6 rounds we had some familiar and some new names to be added to the record books. The most remarkable was that two titles were split 3 ways in both the Under 14 and Under 12 sections!
We started with a visit from the Mayor & Mayoress of East Staffordshire who were much enthused by the dedication and sportsmanship on display. So much so that Reeya Ashok was awarded the Mayors badge due to showing excellent qualities teaching her opponent in the first round how to use the clock. It was great to hear the Mayor was in a chess club as a junior as well and so could relate to what pressures all these children were under. We thank them for supporting the event.
Chief Arbiter Matthew Carr led proceedings round to round with help from Chris Lewis (Shropshire), Stephen Luff & press liaison officer Peter Hornsby with many thanks for their hard work on ensuring a smooth tournament round to round. The venue of Abbots Bromley Village Hall was new to us and a welcome coincidence that we used it! Many commented on how the drive-in was pleasant and the hall was the perfect size for the tournament. We look forward to potentially coming back in the summer so the children can perhaps use some of the outside sports amenities on offer!
The participants mainly consisted of players from Staffordshire but we did have a sprinkling of players from outside increasing the difficulty level and enjoying getting some more practise in. For those at the younger age groups this was their first proper tournament and handling the pressure throughout a long day showed immense maturity all while following the rules of professional play. We might have sped up the last few rounds due to a certain football match being played that evening but all games were played with the ferocity that they should be. At the end of the day we can point to the success of experience gained, friends made and to a positive future for Staffordshire junior chess.

The winners of each class are shown below
Staffordshire Junior Chess Champions 2022 

Under 18 – Dylan Cooper (Newcastle-Under-Lyme) 

Under 18 girl – Amrissa Johal (King Edward VI Handsworth School for girls) 

Under 16 – Joe Conway-Lees (Stourbridge) 

Under 14 – Tied 3 ways - Dylan Whitney (Potteries Junior CC), Stephen Gaskell (Rushall CC), Rahul Desai (Newcastle-Under-Lyme School) 

Under 14 girls – Tara De Silva (Newcastle-Under-Lyme) 

Under 12 – Tied 3 ways – Isaac Stanley (Alsager CC), Aaron Sohi (King Edward School, Birmingham), Karanveer Singh (Bloxwich CC) 

Under 12 girl – Amraya Johal (King Edward VI Handsworth School for girls) 

Under 11 – Ruya Kenz (Newcastle-Under-Lyme School) 

Under 11 girls – Niharika Junenaath (Newcastle-Under-Lyme School) 

Under 10 – Tied 2 ways: Advait Rajinikanth (Newcastle-Under-Lyme School) & Nikodem Boczek (Seabridge Primary) 

Under 10 girls – Mia Goldstraw (Seabridge Primary) 

Under 9 – Sehej Sohi (Mayfield Prep School) 

Under 9 girls – Jasmine Abdulseed (Westlands Primary) 

Under 8 – Reeya Ashok (Newcastle-Under-Lyme School) 

Under 8 girls – Seeraht Kaur (Bloxwich CC) 

Under 7 – Sawain Heenitigala Kanaththage (Potteries Junior CC) 

Under 7 girls – Riley De Silva (Seabridge Primary) 


*CC – Chess Club 

Date & Venue: 4th December 2022, Abbots Bromley Village Hall 

Organiser: Jonathan Blackburn 

Chief Arbiter: Matthew Carr 

Assisted by: Peter Hornsby, Chris Lewis & Stephen Luff