Steinitz 2013 National Club Champions!

Chess Limpopo and the National Club Championships (NCC2o13) would like to thank CHESSA Executive Committee for giving Chess Limpopo an opportunity to host this August event. Sixteen (16) teams took part in the 2013 National Club Championships held in Polokwane. This was a great success for a small and rural province like Limpopo!

The venue of the tournament, Bongiwe Accommodation, was fantastic. The venue was equipped with air-conditioning facilities, wonderful furniture and it was always clean! Bongiwe Accommodation is, in fact, a three star lodge right in Polokwane city. The teams, especially those from outside Limpopo, were accommodated at South Gate Country Lodge, also a three star lodge! Local teams were accommodated at Kiepersol self-catering accommodation in Polokwane!

Bongiwe Accommodation, was fantastic. The venue was equipped with air-conditioning facilities, wonderful furniture and it was always clean! Bongiwe Accommodation is, in fact, a three star lodge right in Polokwane city. The teams, especially those from outside Limpopo, were accommodated at South Gate Country Lodge, also a three star lodge! Local teams were accommodated at Kiepersol self-catering accommodation in Polokwane!

The tournament was ably directed by Wesley Masoga with Joe Mahomole as the Chief Arbiter and Excellence Ramoshaba was indeed excellent on the computer doing the pairings and processing of results! The weather was at the players and organisers’ mercy. Usually during this period it is very hot in Limpopo. It was neither cold nor hot, but just moderate!

The 16 teams that entered were 8 teams in Section C (all from Limpopo) and 8 teams in sections A and B combined. The teams were:

A- & B-Sections (Combined)

  1. Polokwane Chess Club

  2. University of Limpopo A

  3. Steinitz A (Calvin Klaassen, Jerald Times, Lyndon Bouah, Michael James)

  4. Centurion Chess Club

  5. University of Limpopo B

  6. Bloemfontein Chess Club

  7. Steinitz B (Kenny Willenberg, Mark Lewis, Paul Khupwathea, Athon Willenberg)

  8. Dendron Secondary Chess Club

C-Section

  1. Masedibu Knights A

  2. Masedibu Knights B

  3. Dendron Secondary B

  4. Brussels Ngwako A

  5. Dendron Secondary C

  6. Masedibu Knights C

  7. Brussels Ngwako B

  8. Dendron Secondary D

  9. Masedibu Knights D

Steinitz Chess club arrived just after 1 pm in Polokwane with a contingency of two teams. They were later followed by Bloemfontein and Centurion Chess Clubs who arrived just after 7 pm . The tournament started on Friday 20 September (registration and other administrative chores), but the real playing started on Saturday, 21 September 2013 and ended on Tuesday, 24 September 2013.

Of great note was the presence of one of the veterans and co-founders of Polokwane Chess Club, Mr Frans Badenhorst and his wife! Polokwane Chess Club, then called Pietersburg Chess Club, was founded in 1958 in Polokwane and it still exists to date!

LOC

The LOC Comprised of the following people:

  1. Joe Mhomole (Chairing)
  2. Mpho Makoko
  3. Wesley Masoga
  4. Netty Mphahlele (Taking care of finances)

The Results

Steinitz Chess Club, like soldiers, they came, they saw and they conquered in Polokwane! They got down to serious business, like buffalo soldiers fighting for survival on arrival, by handing down 4 : 0’s to their first four opponents, their B team, University of Limpopo A, Polokwane Chess Club and Bloemfontein Chess Club. Out of the possible 28 points Steinitz A dropped only 2 points when they drew 2:2 against Centurion Chess Club.

Bloemfontein Chess Club gave a good account of themselves in this tournament. Despite the fact that they lost 0 : 4 to Steinitz, they gave other teams a god hiding with their board 4, Alfred Pesa, giving some free chess lessons. They handed down 2,5:1,5 to Centurion Chess Club in the opening game. All in all they ended 2nd overall and in the A-section.

Centurion Chess Club ended the tournament with a spectacular 3,5:0,5 thrashing of Steinitz B team. In round 5 they played to 2 : 2 against Steinitz A thereby retaining their unbeaten record against Steinitz Chess Club.

Polokwane Chess Club showed signs of a very difficult customer of the tournament when they handed down 3,5:0,5 to Dendron Secondary Chess Club and 4:0 to University of Limpopo B before succumbing 0:4 to the ultimate champions, Steinitz A. To prove that they were a difficult customer they drew 2:2 with Centurion Chess Club in round 7.

Team results round by round

Round 1

Round 1
1 Steinitz A 1 4-0 8 Steinitz B
2 University of Limpopo A 2 2-2 7 University of Limpopo B
3 Polokwane A 3 3.5-0.5 6 Dendron Secondary
4 Bloemfontein Chess Club 4 2.5-1.5 5 Centurion

Round 2

# Team No. Res No. Team
1 Steinitz B 8 1.5-2.5 5 Centurion Chess Club
2 Dendron Secondary 6 0-4 4 Bloemfontein Chess Club
3 University of Limpopo B 7 0-4 3 Polokwane A
4 Steinitz A 1 4-0 2 University of Limpopo A

Round 3

# Team No. Res No. Team
1 University of Limpopo A 2 0-4 8 Steinitz B
2 Polokwane A 3 0-4 1 Steinitz A
3 Bloemfontein Chess Club 4 4-0 7 University of Limpopo B
4 Centurion Chess Club 5 3-1 6 Dendron Secondary

Round 4

# Team No. Res No. Team
1 Steinitz B 8 4-0 6 Dendron Secondary
2 University of Limpopo B 7 2-2 5 Centurion Chess Club
3 Steinitz A 1 4-0 4 Bloemfontein Chess Club
4 University of Limpopo A 2 1.5-2.5 3 Polokwane A

Round 5

# Team No. Res No. Team
1 Polokwane A 3 0-4 8 Steinitz B
2 Bloemfontein Chess Club 4 4-0 2 University of Limpopo A
3 Centurion Chess Club 5 2-2 1 Steinitz A
4 Dendron Secondary 6 1-3 7 University of Limpopo B

Round 6

# Team No. Res No. Team
1 Steinitz B 8 3.5-0.5 7 University of Limpopo B
2 Steinitz A 1 4-0 6 Dendron Secondary
3 University of Limpopo A 2 1-3 5 Centurion Chess Club
4 Polokwane A 3 1-3 4 Bloemfontein Chess Club

Round 7

# Team No. Res No. Team
1 Bloemfontein Chess Club 4 3.5-0.5 8 Steinitz B
2 Centurion Chess Club 5 2-2 3 Polokwane A
3 Dendron Secondary 6 1.5-2.5 2 University of Limpopo A
4 University of Limpopo B 7 0-4 1 Steinitz A

Final Results

A- & B-Sections
Pos Team GP MP Dir Bchz 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
1 Steinitz A 26.0 6.5 0.0 86.0 4 4 2 4 4 4 4
2 Bloemfontein Chess Club 21.0 6.0 0.0 91.0 0 3.5 2.5 3 4 4 4
3 Steinitz B 17.5 4.0 0.0 94.5 0 0.5 1.5 4 3.5 4 4
4 Centurion Chess Club 16.0 4.5 0.0 96.0 2 1.5 2.5 2 2 3 3
5 Polokwane A 13.0 3.5 0.0 99.0 0 1 0 2 4 2.5 3.5
6 University of Limpopo B 7.5 2.0 0.0 104.5 0 0 0.5 2 0 2 3
7 University of Limpopo A 7.0 1.5 0.0 105.0 0 0 0 1 1.5 2 2.5
8 Dendron Secondary 4.0 0.0 0.0 108.0 0 0 0 1 0.5 1 1.5

Steinitz Chess Club successfully defended their title for the 7th time! Congratulations, champions, you deserve it!!!!!

In Section C, Masedibu Knights A Chess Club ran away with the title. In fact this team should have played in the B section of the tournament. They were too strong for the other teams. Of great note in this section was the Brussels Ngwako Chess Club. They come from true rural area 113 km away from Polokwane in the area of Senwabarwana (formerly called Bochum). They teams consisted of players with average age being 13! They are a true development club!!! In fact Brussels Ngwako is one of the products of Chess Limpopo’s chess academy initiative called Watu Kobese Chess Foundation! The aim of the academy is to develop a strong chess culture and clubs in the rural areas and townships which can produce titled players within the next 10 years (in 2024)!

 

C-Section
Pos Team GP MP Bchz SB 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
1 Masedibu Knights A 20.0 6.0 76.0 59.50 0 3 2.5 2.5 4 4 4
2 Masedibu Knights B 16.5 4.5 79.5 39.00 4 2 1 3.5 3 3 4
3 Brussels Ngwako A 15.0 3.5 81.0 37.25 1 2 2 2 4 4 0
4 Dendron Secondary C 13.0 3.0 83.0 30.25 1.5 3 2 1 0 2 3.5
5 Dendron Secondary B 12.0 3.0 84.0 28.50 1.5 0.5 2 3 2 0 3
6 Brussels Ngwako B 10.0 2.5 86.0 15.50 0 1 0 4 2 3.5 3.5
7 Dendron Secondary D 6.5 1.5 89.5 9.50 0 1 0 2 4 0.5 3
8 Masedibu Knights C 3.0 0.0 93.0 0.00 0 0 4 0.5 1 0.5 1

Prize Giving

The prize giving ceremony took place at 12:15 at Bongiwe Accommodation. It was well-directed by the Deputy President of Chess Limpopo, Mr Mpho Makoko. The ceremony was graced by one of the founder members of Polokwane Chess, Mr Frans Badenhorst and his wife and the LOC.

The following prizes were awarded:

(a)  Floating Trophy for the National Club Championships donated by Chess Limpopo which was won by Steinitz Chess Club.

(b)  Take away trophies, one for Section A and the other for Section B.

(c)  Medals for Board Winners (3 for each board: gold, silver and bronze).

Congratulations to:

(a)  Steinitz A, winning the A Section, a takeaway trophy and the floating trophy thereby becoming the 2013 National Club Champion!

(b)  Steinitz B, winning the B section and a takeaway trophy.
Finances

LOC could not raise sufficient funds to cover tournament expenses and prizes for the winning teams and individual board prizes. The Executive Committee of Chess Limpopo, in support of the LOC, requested a bail-out from CHESSA to cover prizes and other tournament expenses.

Recommendations

  1. National Club Championships should be seen as national club league pitting winners of the various provincial leagues against each other to produce the national club champion. Therefore, all winners of the various provincial club leagues MUST participate in the A Section (Championship Section) of the National Club Championships. The tournament should not be called Inter-Club, but the National Club Championship!
  2. The tournament must be used to promote club chess and CHESSA can take advantage of the government’s project of Club Development to source funding to support this tournament!
  3. To attract strong players to take part in the tournament good/decent prizes (team and board prizes) should be offered. To live to this expectation Chess Limpopo tried to offer better prizes than were ever offered in any previous versions of the tournament. Chess Limpopo offered more than R 20 000,00 in cash prizes in the following areas:
    • Team prizes
      • Section A:  1st=R5000,  2nd=R2500,  3rd=R1500
      • Section B:  1st=R2500,  2nd=R1500,  3rd=R1250
      • Section C:  1st=R1000,  2nd=R750,  3rd=R500
    • Board prizes
      • Sections A&B:  1st=R250,  2nd=R150,  3rd=R125
      • Section C:  1st=R100,  2nd=R75,  3rd=R50
  4. The reasons why the board prizes for sections A and B were awarded as one it was because the two sections were combined into one section as per tournament regulations (If no enough team entries were received for a particular section then the sections would be collapsed into one section). After collapsing sections a and B into one section (called section A) then it was decided that only team prizes would be maintained for the sections because they are paying different entry fees, but the board prizes would be collapsed into one and the B-section prizes were used. This was discussed and agreed to by all team captains!
  5. For the first three (3) years CHESSA should fully finance the event AND also mount a huge and aggressive marketing of the tournament so that the tournament attains its financial independence by attracting big sponsors.
  6. The tournament should be a gateway to participating in the continental (African Club Championships) and then to the world club championships! The winners of the National Club Championships should automatically earn their rights to represent South Africa in the African Club Championships!
  7. For the next version of the tournament (National Club Championships) we propose this structure:
    • Section A (Championship Section) consisting of 12 teams assembled as follows:
      • Provincial League Winners.
      • 3 x extra teams from strong provinces with high concentration of players. The strength of the province should be determined by the average rating of their top 50 players! For a start these areas will be 1 x team from Western Cape (especially Western Province) and 2 x teams from Gauteng.
      • An 11 rounds single round robin be played.
    • Section B consisting of 12 teams assembled as follows:
      • Provincial League Runners-up.
      • 3 x extra teams from strong provinces with high concentration of players which are not those identified for the Championship Section. The strength of the province will be determined by the average rating of their top 50 players! For a start these provinces will be 1 x team from Eastern Cape (particularly Nelson Mandela Bay) Chess, 1 x teams from KwaZulu Natal (especially Durban) and 1 x team from Free State (especially Bloemfontein).
      • An 11 rounds single round robin be played.
    • Section C which is open, but with maximum of 35 teams, assembled as follows:
      • 3rd Place Finishers of Provincial Leagues.
      • This section should be open to young and developing clubs.
      • Accommodate a maximum of 35 teams, majority of the teams should come from within the province that hosts the tournament.
      • An 11 rounds Swiss be played.

Conclusion

Chess Limpopo would like to thank CHESSA, especially the Adult Commission led by Eldo Smart and the Events Committee for giving Limpopo an opportunity to host this tournament. It should be recorded in the annals of CHESSA that this was the first CHESSA national event that was ever held or hosted by Limpopo. That is why we are saying it was a great honour and privilege for us to host the event. Most important Chess Limpopo wishes to profusely thank Centurion Chess Club, Bloemfontein Chess Club and Steinitz Chess Club (from Cape Town) to have honoured the tournament and thereby giving it a true national event. One is rather disappointed by the lack of participation by the Gauteng clubs in this August event. Limpopo was closer to them. All what most clubs from Gauteng did was to enlist their names but never confirmed nor turn up.

We wish to host the same tournament again should the opportunity present itself. This time around we’ll make the tournament bigger and better!

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