Strong performances in dramatic finale

IT has been a busy month or so for the Wells Chess teams. All three teams had a lot still to play for. In Division 2 East Wells played two matches in quick succession. They won a convincing 3-1 match away at Trowbridge and followed that with a very impressive 5-1 home win against top of the table Yeovil. Chris Strong secured an impressive win on board 1 and Paul Humphreys produced a similarly strong performance on board 2 to seal victory, both against strong opponents. Wins for Solomon Hayes and Ben Jukes on boards 4 and 5 gave Wells a very impressive home win against the strongest team in all the leagues. Unfortunately, it was not enough to close the gap at the top of the table and Wells had to make do with second place in the final table.

In Division 3 East, Wells produced two very strong performances. A 4-0 away win at Trowbridge meant they were snapping at the heels of a Bath side who were top of the table. Bath stumbled with a draw at Trowbridge which brought them within sight with one match to play. Despite having never beaten Bath, Wells went to Bath on a cold, wet evening and put on a very strong team performance to win 3-1. Matt Goatcher won a very tight match on board 1 while captain Solomon Hayes turned around a difficult position to win on board 2. Ben Jukes picked up another dynamic win on board 3 to bring home the points. Unfortunately, despite finishing level on points at the top of the table Wells finished second by virtue of their head-to-head record with Bath. Nevertheless, this was a very impressive end to the season.

In Division 2 West there are still a couple of matches to play and any one of three teams could win the Division. Wells defeated Sedgemoor 2.5-1.5 with wins for Jamie Eales on board 2 and Matt Goatcher on Board 4. A draw for captain John Waterfield on board 1 was enough to seal the victory on the night. A follow up match away at Glastonbury proved to be a whitewash for Wells. Strong performances from captain John Waterfield, Jamie Eales, Chris Strong and Paul Humphreys gave them a 4-0 victory and closed the gap on the top of the table. With any of Weston, Wells and Yeovil able to win the league the away match to Yeovil was crucial. Wells could not afford to lose. Unfortunately, losses for John Waterfield and Jamie Eales meant that looked unlikely. However, a couple of last-minute wins for Matt Goatcher and Chris Strong meant that Wells came away with a 2-2 draw and were still very much in the race. Wellington had to forfeit their recent match with Wells which gave them a 4-0 win. This leaves Weston on top with 14 points and Wells and Yeovil on 13 points but each of them has one match left to play.

In their online matches Wells A Team have had two wins to lift them up to third in their division while Wells B Team after a poor start have won three matches in a row to leave them in fourth. There are still several rounds to go but both teams are fighting for promotion.

Wells has a thriving chess club playing both competitive and social chess. Club nights on a Wednesday evening at the Globe Inn on Priest Row are a great opportunity to meet other players and enjoy a vibrant and growing club. Anyone interested in joining for social or competitive chess can find them on Facebook or at