Youngsters at the Grass Roots tournament at BATTS

Youngsters got their first taste of competition at the first BATTS Grass Roots tournament of the season.

The event is designed for beginners with limited tournament experience, and visitors to the Harlow club included parties from Southend, Ilford, North Herts, Bedford, Braintree, Broxbourne and Bishop’s Stortford, as well as a dozen of the host club’s juniors.

It was a full and exciting day’s play on 14 tables, with a round-robin group for all players in the morning, and then another after lunch. The tournament was then rounded off by a mini-knockout for the eight most successful players from the two group competitions.

There were some extremely close matches in the quarter-finals, where the contenders were: TJ O’Sullivan, Callum Stepsky, Esher Bahara, William Bettley, Luke Manning, Luca Bailey, Ed Crawford, and Sophie Chiang.

In the semi finals TJ O’Sullivan overcame William Bettley in a very tough duel and Sophie Chiang surprised Luca Bailey to come out top in a really close match.

In the final, O’Sullivan was too strong for the phenomenal eight-year-old sensation Sophie Chiang, who is definitely a prospect for the future.

Graham Frankel
October 20, 2014