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2005 Leek Congress 9 - 11 September

Over 100 players entered the Leek congress, playing in 4 sections determined after entry by the organisers.

The Alton Towers section (U210, 23 players) resulted in a tie between Cheddleton's Alan Smith and Mike Surtees from Bolton on four points, with Rob Shaw (Cheddleton), Nicholas Rutter (Newport) and Martin Cutmore (Wood Green) half a point behind. Dean Hartley of Amber Valley won the slow starter prize.

The AH Brookes, Solicitors, Section featured 29 players graded 117 to 148 and was dominated by Geoff Laurence from Macclesfield who went into the last round a point clear of the field. He duly drew his last game to reach an unassailable 4½ points. The 4-way tie for second place involved Bill Armstrong and Yangshi Yu (both Cheddleton), Chris Vassiliou from Chorlton and Martin Burms from Stockport. Slow starter Dave Cork from Crawley is a former Newcastle player.

28 players contested the Lafarge section, their grades ranging from 88 to 116. Top dogs were Vlade Luzajic (Cheddleton), Carl Gartside (High Peak), Jeffrey Green (Rugby) and Robbie Coats (Thamesdown Juniors) all on 4 points. Roger Walker from Belper and Harvey Birch from Coventry shared the slow starters prize.

The fourth section was the Westwood section in which 28 players with grades upto 87 competed. The extensive prize list was headed by Jon Fisher (Clifton) on 4½ points, with Robert Stokes (Scunthorpe) and Fay Birch (Coventry) on 4. The slow starter prize was shared by Ebrahim Arshad and Anne-Marie Moruzzi (both Cheddleton), Ray Bradney (Stockport) and Derrick Jones (Newcastle).

Newcastle were well represented at the event, with seven members turning out - Chon, Daniel, Martyn, James, Paul, Mike and Derrick. Mostly they found themselves amongst the lower seeds for their section, though all scored at least 1½ including at least one win.

Cheddleton won the Kerrygold team prize (a clock).


The controllers kept themselves in the background, giving there usual impression of effortless ease in organising the event.
As ever at Leek rustiness after the summer break was used to justify many crimes at the board, so presumably a new excuse will need to be found for losses in the opening games of the new league season.

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