January is moving well ahead. The first two meetings in January were slow starting with 8 and 15 players showing up on the 3rd and 10th respectively, but that will soon pick up. As practice is needed for the coming tournaments!
A glance at the chess calendar shows we have the first tournaments in Hong Kong and nearby areas coming up soon.
The HKCF Hong Kong Chess Preliminaries will start on 28 January running 9 Monday evenings into April 8. For the juniors HKCF have the Hong Kong Inter-School Championship coming up on 23 and 24 February. Also for youth, the Hong Kong Chess Association March Challengers Tournament is scheduled for 9 and 10 March. All highly recommendable events.
Caissa, supported by HKCF, is also working together with Macao to hold the traditional Interport match between the two cities on 2 March in Discovery Bay.
Until end of March, plus or minus one tournament, that’s all for Hong Kong. This in sharp contrast with Singapore where the Singapore Chess Federation is organizing 11 events (standard, rapid, blitz, transfer) in the same period of which 6 are Open and even FIDE rated. Their impressive calendar runs all the way until end of this year with well over 40 events – again, most are FIDE rated. If a weekend trip to somewhere in this area is on the top of your list anyway, combining it with a tournament in Singapore will be good to boost chess skills.
Or a weekend in Bangkok for the BCC Checkmate Open 2013 on 2 and 3 February could be interesting to polish chess skills and enjoy the delicious Thai food.
Talking about chess skills, Caissa has grown in half a year on Thursdays from 5 to over 25 youth players, of varying levels of skills and noise … Mostly we have therefore nowadays two coaches on Thursdays, but with such a large group it is still challenging to divide the group into manageable sub groups for players to be paired with peers and guided according to their playing levels.
The club will be reorganizing the Thursdays and is planning to add the Saturday and possibly other days. The reorganization will be around dividing players specifically in groups A, B and C, with group A comprising the advanced players and group C the most beginning players. We will also form a squad which will consist of players who are very ready and willing for tournament play and representing the club in, for example, international team events. Participation in such events will be full sponsored by the club, including travel and lodging if required.
We aim to have the reorganization finalized from April and we will keep you posted about further progress.