Fantastic news for English chess!
In the Open section of the World Team Championship our team took the silver medals behind Russia.
Better still, three of our team won individual medals as well. Luke McShane, former Richmond Junior Club star and arguably the world’s strongest amateur, took the gold medal for the best performance on Board 2. Gawain Jones won the silver medal for his results on Board 4, while there was a bronze medal for our Board 3 David Howell, a good friend of Richmond Junior Club who, as a young boy, took part in some of our events.
Heartiest congratulations to Luke, David and Gawain along with our top board Mickey Adams, reserve/analyst Jon Speelman and team manager Malcolm Pein on a superb performance.
Chess has a serious image problem in this country. While the game is seen as being ‘good for you’, chess players usually have a bad press, being seen by the general public as nerds lacking in social skills who will probably go mad ‘like that Bobby Fischer’. We need to make the game more popular with teenagers and young adults (female as well as male), and we could do worse than using the distinctly unnerdy Luke, David and Gawain, as well as some of the younger female stars, as role models
Here, for your enjoyment, is David Howell’s last round win against Sweden.