With the chess-playing season over, it’s time to look back over our first team’s performance in the last year.
As the new boys in Division 2 of the Oxford and District Chess League (ODCL), we knew it was going to be a difficult season, playing against many well-established teams.
Our best hope was to finish above Cowley Workers (who also were promoted with us from Division 3 due to the leagues being rearranged).
Our first game was against Witney 2, who were clearly looking for a strong start as they put out a strong team meaning we lost 5-1.
We picked up our first point with an away draw at Bicester who were the team relegated from Division 1 last season.
Another draw against Cowley Workers didn’t really help either team pull away from each other.
This was followed by two 2.5-3.5 losses – to City 2 and MCS/B1 – and we ended 2012 at home to Wantage 1 with a 3-3 draw.
At the mid point we hade picked up 3 draws and 3 losses from our first 6 games.
The new year started with the first league win away to Witney 2, beating them 3.5-2.5. This was followed by another 2.5-3.5 loss to Bicester 1.
The Cowley Workers game looked like it could decide who was going to be relegated back to Division 3, with us on 5 points and them still on 1, a real 4 pointier.
Fortunately, we managed to scrape past the finishing post first (but Steve did make us sweat a little) 3.5-2.5. This put Cumnor Chess Club’s first team 6 points clear.
Our final game was away to Wantage 1 in which we picked up a win, finishing the season on a high.
Cumnor 1 ultimately finished 6th in the division with 9 points – 8 clear of the relegated Cowley Workers whose solitary point was from our draw back in November – and only (!) 10 points from top.
It was our highest league finish and has kept us in the same division for next season, which is a rarity for Cumnor 1.
Well done to Andrew, Daniel, Gareth, Graham, Liam, Mark, Michael, Pako, Robin, Roger and Steve who played for Cumnor 1 this season, and everyone else for their support!
Stat of the season: Out of the 72 boards Cumnor 1 played on during the 2012/2013 season we were outgraded on 52 occasions.
The Frank Wood Shield
During the year, The Frank Wood Shield (The Oxfordshire chess equivalent to the FA Cup) was a welcome distraction from the league. We had a bye in the first round so our first game was in round two versus Witney 3 who we beat 4-2.
Our next game in the cup was the quarter-final where we played Witney 2. Witney 2, who were eventual finalists, beat us 4-2 which ended our little run.