Wet, wet, wet

Scarborough Chess Congress reviewed by Lumpy Kustud and our Welsh reporter Dim Parcio

27 October 2019

Lumpy Kustud: This year the Scarborough Chess Congress coincided with the Scarborough Rain Festival. Yes, it was wet, wet, wet. Hey, that’s a catchy little phrase! I might copyright it.

Dim Parcio: Think you’ll find some Scots have got there before you. About 37 years before you, pen coc.

Lumpy: Trust you to rain on my parade.

Dim Parcio: We’re here to talk about the chess, twll tin.

Lumpy: Sure. But it was wet. Every time I stepped outsde the door it was either drizzling or bucketing.

Dim Parcio: The chess, y haliwr, the chess! Y flewch!

Lumpy: OK, yes, well, it didn’t kick off to a flying start. The arbiting team got caught in some terrific traffic snarl-up on Tyneside and then in Middlesbrough. They arrived about 2 hours later than planned. Still frantically getting things ready when they’d normally be blowing the starting gun, I mean firing the whistle. Turning the clocks back. Or something. It wasn’t the moment to ask them where the drinking water was.

Dim Parcio: What about your Limewood contingent?

Lumpy: Quite a collection of them, once they’d found a boat to get there in. Nine who’d played for Limewood in the past year. I think it’s the first time we’ve had a rep in all five sections. There was Paul Brencher in the Open and Paul May in the Major. In the Intermediate there was Holi and also John Grasham. Sri Sriharan was in the Minor. The rest were all in the Foundation: Philip May, John Light, David Halpin and someone whose name I’ve forgotten.

Dim Parcio: Any prizewinners?

Lumpy: Oh yes, a full slate of prizewinners. But none of them from Limewood.

Dim Parcio: Yn fytyn. You know what I meant. How did the Limewooders do?

Lumpy: The Limewooders were in the lower half of their section, gradewise, in every case bar one. So they’d got an uphill task just to make any impression at all. But three of them managed to go home with 2½ points apiece – Paul Brencher, Sri Sriharan and Philip May. Quite good in the circumstances.

Dim Parcio: You are so generous with your praise. Did any of them improve on their starting ratings?

Lumpy: Yes. Our star performer was Sri in the Minor. He started as 72nd out of 75 ratingwise. He finished at 35th. Impressive. In the Foundation, Philip May improved his standing from 53rd out of 78 to 43rd. And David Halpin, with 1½, improved his position from 73rd to 67th.

Dim Parcio: So these guys all played above their standing.

Lumpy: That’s right. No prizes but some reasons for satisfaction. I’m sure they’d have done better if it had been dry. I got wet every time I went outside. It was Monsoon weather.

Dim Parcio: You’re obsessed with it, you soft saesneg. If you came from West Wales like me, you’d know what wet weather really is. This was just a light shower or two.

Lumpy: Now you’re being unreasonable.

Dim Parcio: Dos i chwara dy Nain. Nos da!

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