TAFCA SEASON 2017- 18
While we would have liked to win everything going in TAFCA, that was always going to be a hard ask! Was our season as a club good or bad? I will leave that up to you to decide! Castlehill had 6 teams entered this season, the most by any club.
DIVISION ONE (3 teams from Castlehill)
Dundee A were by fair the strongest side and were deserved winners of the division on 14 points. Castlehill A did not always have their strongest players available but still managed to finish in runner-up spot behind Dundee A. Point wise we were tied on 10 points with Perth A, but win out against Perth on board points! Now our “A” team turned up at Perth playing their “A” team with only 1 Castlehill A team player. The rest of the team were made up of B, D & E team players and we lost 2½ – 1½, but those 1½ points proved to be very important in did!
Castlehill B finished in 4th place on 8 points, while Castlehill C finished in 7th place on 2 points. They are technically in relegation spot, but it all depends on how many teams enter next year. At the moment they are save as it looks like only one will go down. Perth B are relegated as the bottom team.
This ended up being a two horse race between Kirkcaldy B and Castlehill D. Both teams were evenly matched grading wise. Both teams also drew against Dundee C. Kirkcaldy B then dropped another point against our “E” team to hand the initiative to Castlehill “D”. It would all go down to the meeting between them. Unfortunately for Castlehill D they could not field their strongest team that night with both top juniors unavailable due to exams. This did weaken our side but it was still strong enough to take on Kirkcaldy B. It was not to be as Kirkcaldy B won 3-1 on the night. They still had one match too play, but did win that as well to take the division 2 title! On the night, Ray Noble on board one was at least drawing, if not winning, when he gave away his queen for nothing! Oh well was not meant to be and Castlehill D (9 pts) finished as runners-up to Kirkcaldy B (10 pts) who were worthy champions indeed!
Castlehill E finished in 4th place on 8 points, just missing out on third spot on board points. Castlehill F finished in last place and are relegated to division 3. Sorry forgot no division 3 so they are safe for the moment! The “F” team have a lot of our new juniors playing and it’s the first time they had played in the TAFCA league so the experience gained will be good for them and they may change things around next season!
TIME HAND-CAP KNOCKOUT
Ten teams took part in the Knockout and six of them were Castlehill teams! Castlehill C made sure that our chess club did not finish the TAFCA season trophy less as they beat Perth in the final 5½ – 2½ to be crowned TAFCA Knockout champions. In all three matches Castlehill C used the same four players. Andy Rowe, Craig Nicol, Ray Noble & John Lynch. Well played lads!
J.R.CHALMERS GRAND PRIX
David Findlay (Dundee CC) regained the J.R.Chalmers Grand Prix trophy on 9½ points. Declan Shafi (Castlehill CC) & Ray Flood (Dundee & Castlehill) finished in equal 2nd place along with David Hall (Perth) and last years winner junior Aaron Gourlay. Yes Aaron showed that last year was no fluke by finishing in equal 2nd place on 8 points.
The TAFCA Individual & Allegro were not held this year.
Well that ends another TAFCA season for Castlehill and we did get a trophy winner! It was also nice to see a new team, Newport Knights in the TAFCA league. It breaks the trend of losing clubs!
Next year we might make 7 teams!
That concludes the TAFCA report on Castlehill Chess Club.
Once again congratulations to Castlehill C for becoming TAFCA Knockout Champions 2017-18!