Monday 30 October 2017

2nd Orpington Tournament Results - Shlok defends title

Shlok Verma was again victorious in the Bishop section of the 2nd Orpington Junior Tournament and Training Day (OJCTATD!). However, this time he was taken to a play-off finish against Marius Kobler.

Shlok Verma V Marius Kobler - Watched closely by (some of) the coaching team - Victor Jones, Aaravamudhan Balaji and Jacob Waton
We videoed the game (in case it turned violent) and will upload that once we have edited it.

Below are the full  Bishop results
The top four choose a range of poses to celebrate their success
Chess Players deep in thought with Jo - Tournament Director - in the background

The reigning champion of the Knights was promoted to the Bishop section and unable to defend his championship. Instead, Alex was our new winner, scoring 4/4. Ievan was also undefeated, but a half-point bye in the first round meant he missed out on first place!

The top four are joined by a jolly intruder (far-left)
Congratulations to everyone who took part and thanks to the kitchen, the coaches and most of all to Jo for her invaluable work as tournament director. 

Your feedback is critical to improving our events. You can email, call or send hate-mail in the post. Alternatively you can use this form. Feedback is anonymous, but undoubtedly google and the CIA will store your identity forever.

We hope our next event will take place in early December as practice for the London Junior Championships. In the meantime, I will be running weekly clubs in Shortlands (Thursdays), as well as Blackheath and Coney Hall on weekends. Let me know if you are interested. 

If you would like to see more photos of your child at the event, don't hesitate to email me.

Friday 27 October 2017

2nd Orpington Junior Chess Tournament and Training Day - 27th October

I am pleased to announce that the 2nd Orpington Junior Chess Tournament and Training Day will take place on Friday 27th October, in half-term. You can enter here.


The day will comprise of four rounds of chess, in two sections, and two hours of coaching. The coaching will be targeted at all levels from beginner to grade 140.


St John's United Reform Church, Lynwood Grove, Orpington, Kent, BR6 0BG. This is the same location as last time. There will be room for parents, who must supervise their children when they are not playing or in a training session, and a small number of other cheering supporters. The sharing of childcare is encouraged as space is limited but we cannot take responsibility for supervision outside of the playing hall and training rooms during tournament games and training sessions.


Friday 27th October. Registration is from 9-9.15am and we will begin at 9.30am. The tournament, including prize-giving, will finish by 4pm.

Who is running it?

Conrad Allison (the writer of this blog) will be running the tournament. I currently run seven chess clubs and also tutor privately. I am fully DBS checked.

I will be assisted by several other DBS checked adults. The coaches will be confirmed shortly, and is likely to include highly-talented juniors who have experience of coaching (Under-18s cannot be DBS checked, but must and will be supervised by adults).

How to enter

Please enter by using this form and the payment details will be emailed to you. Entry is £24 but there is a £5 early-bird discount for entries on or before October 6th.

Will there be food?

Of course!
Homemade soups and sandwiches, as well as hot dogs will be provided by a fully-qualified chef. There will also be a range of cold snacks and hot drinks.

Will there be prizes?

There will be trophies, medals and book prizes. To encourage greater entry from secondary school pupils, there will be a £50 prize for the best secondary school pupil (providing there are at least 6 entries from this group).

Who won last time?

A big congratulations to James Merriman, who won the Bishop section with 4/4 and George Buckles-Motts, who travelled from afar and also won all his games in the Knight section. Amherst Primary are the defending school champions. The standings can be found on this blog.

In the meantime

Why not join ACES Chess Club in Shortlands to improve your chess?

Thursday 19 October 2017

Oxbridge Prep - Tuesday 24th and Sunday 29th - Orpington

Oxbridge Prep - Orpington
Economics, PPE, English, History, Classics/modern languages, general interview and exam support

-Exam prep
-Interview prep
-General Advice

Delivered by recent Oxbridge graduates with knowledge of system, advised by current students (who just sat the exams we are preparing you for).

Tuesday 24th October
Sunday 29th October

Tutoring Lead, Economics and PPE
Conrad Allison – Economics BA, St Catharine’s, Cambridge, 2013
History and English Tutor
Ciaran Chillingworth – History BA, St Catharine’s, Cambridge, 2011
Classics Tutor, Oxford lead 
Alex Hardwick – BA Classics (Starred 1st), Queens’, Cambridge, 2013, MSt Classical Languages and Literature, Magdalen College, Oxford (distinction), 2016, Dphil Classical Languages and Literature, Magdalen College, Oxford (first year)
Consulting supervisor 

Jingwen Dai – BA Land Economy (Starred 1st), first-year supervisor

Supported by:
William Jones – Maths BSc, Warwick 2012
Ellie Shaw – English BA, Roehampton, English MA, UCL

Alongside A-Level support.
Contact Conrad Allison


Friday 13 October 2017

Academic and Chess Classes in October half-term

In addition to the October Tournament I shall be running the following academic and chess classes . They will take place in Orpington or possibly Bromley.

Sunday 29th October 

Chess: (all levels)
Maths: GCSE, A-level and 11+
English: GCSE, A-level and 11+
Science: GCSE and interactive sessions for younger children
UCAS, Oxbridge and careers advice

Only classes for which there is sufficient demand will take place.

After these classes, we can all be this suave and confident

Academic classes will be grouped by ability and no larger than eight children.

Chess groups will be no larger than eight children and will be split by ability according to which Institute of Chess Level they are working towards. Children who are not working towards these levels will still benefit from the teaching.

Chess lessons will be interactive, based on past games and endings. They will be the opportunity to play out certain positions for practice (such as Queen and King V King at the lowest level and complex rook endings for more advanced students).

However, only a short 15 minute break will be given for playing chess to ensure that children get the most from the session. If there is demand, I will run mini-competition in the afternoon to satisfy the need for chess.

There is no minimum or maximum strength for the chess classes. If very strong players enter, I shall arrange for stronger coaches to teach.

Please register your child for these chess classes here and academic classes here.

Don't hesitate to contact me if you have any questions. I can be reached on and am happy to discuss your situation over the phone.

Conrad Chess Camp is recruiting! Get in touch if your a chess trainer or tutor, even if it is something you are trying for the first time. Administrative, strategic and marketing work is also available.

First Orpington Blitz won by Aaravamudhan Balaji

The First (and impromptu) Orpington Blitz was won by Aaravamudhan Balaji, who pipped Jacob Watson by half-a-point after defeating him in the final round. It took place on Friday 13th (Is there bad luck in chess?) October at St John's Church, Lynwood Grove.

The tournament, paired with a scrap piece of paper and an old biro, was admittedly chaotic at times as cries of "Who am I playing?" and "What colour am I?" repeatedly rang out. Our new clocks sustained a battering, but they held their own. The time control was an exciting 5 + 2s.

Pictures to follow.

Congratulations to Aaravamudhan Balaji and Jacob Watson. Congratulations must also go to Aryan Sanka (A student of mine), who scored a solid 3/6 against strong opposition. We will be following his progress closely.

Thanks to everyone who took part.

We hope that our November tournament will be 5 rounds and 10 minutes each on the clock. There will be prizes. Over Christmas I anticipate at least one mega-blitz tournament and an afternoon rated rapid-play. Stay tuned!

Full standings below:

5/6              Aaravamudhan Balaji
4.5/6           Jacob Watson
3/6              Mikey Watson
                   Conrad Allison
                   Balaji xxx
                   Aryan Sanka
2/6              Shaun Pasari
                   Rohan Pasari
1.5/6           Yifan Luo
                   Reuben Moisey
                   Aneesh Batura                      
1/6              Joshua Moisey


Sunday 8 October 2017

2nd Orpington Junior Tournament and Training Day Entries

There's still time to enter the 2nd OJTATD (Orpington Junior Tournament and Training) here.

Entries so far are below. Please enter as soon as possible once you know you intend for your child to play. This helps to plan and ensure nobody has to be turned away. We now have 38 entries. Strength refers to ECF grade of Institute of Chess level.

First name Surname School Age Strength
Scarlet Watson Sevenoaks Primary 7 17
Ievan  Premachandran 7 22
George Buckles-Motts Charterhouse Square School 9 36
Vy Varma The Granville School 10 51
Amit Aryan Sanka Warren Road Primary School 8 63
Vincent Rocero St. Olaves Grammar School 11 66
Yong Gui  Wang Warren Road Primary School 10 93
Marius Kobler Solefield 11 102
Shlok Verma Tubbenden Primary 8 142
Joseph Ballard Trinity School, Sevenoaks 15 120 est
Ameya Athawale St. Olaves Grammar School 12 60 est
Sophia Wang Warren road 8 Leve1 1
Emily Ashcroft St Helens Montessori School 6 Level 1
Ezra Banton DPL 9 Level 1
Isabelle Ellison The Granville School 8 Level 1
Georgina Stopford The Granville School 7 Level 1
Gabriella-Grace   Nelson St Joseph  9 Level 1
Gabriel Doyle Holy Innocents RC Primary School 8 Level 1
Patrick  Doyle Holy Innocents RC Primary School 6 Level 1
Mimi Cliff The Granville School 8 Level 1
Marius Kobler Solefield 11 Level 1
Dhyan Barot Kilmorie primary school 9 Level 2
The New Beacon
The Granville School
The Granville School
Level 1
Level 1
Level 1
Bright Lan Crofton Junior 11 Level 2
Danny Leys Richardson  St Thomas' Catholic Primary School 9 Level 2
Sophia  Wang Warren Road Primary School 9 Level 2
Theodore Panchev The Skinners' 12 Level 2
Oluwadamilola Eesuola St Michael 8 Level 2
Alexandar Stefanov Holland Park school 11 level 2
Julia Jukes St Thomas’s Catholic Primary 8 level 2
Ivan Ovchinnikov Dulwich College 8 level 2
Krisha  Kamat Allington primary school  8 Level 3
Keanu Kumar Pointers 10 level 3
Kyle Karaman The Judd School 13 level 3
Michael Bosman Cranmore school 8 level 3?
Cyrus Buckman St Dunstan's College Junior School 9 Level 4
Arjun Jadhav Eltham college 11 Level 4

Friday 29 September 2017

England Junior Slays International Giant

England Junior, Aditya Verma, 14, defeated International Grandmaster and former British Champion Chris Ward in a Simul this Friday night.

Chris in thought with (Left to right) Hamit, Kieran, Mikey and Jacob pondering in the background.

The victorious Aditya (behind Harry)

The Simultaneous Exhibition lasted an astonishing four-and-a-half hours and did not finish until the early hours of Saturday morning at Petts Wood and Orpington Chess club.

One of the last games to finish was played by an eight-year-old who has only recently taken up the game. He fought off tiredness to take Chris to a (sadly-losing) king and pawn endgame. It would be improper to reveal the age of our most mature member, but it was especially impressive that his game length exceeded his age in years.

No fewer than seven of the line-up that faced Chris had international experience representing their country and it showed.

"There were no easy games,"  explained Chris as he rushed to the end of his Salsa session. At one point during the event he asked Aditya's younger brother, who just returned from the European Youth Championships with a fantastic 7/9, for help to overcome his sibling.

Unfortunately for Chris, "it got complicated and I was lucky", explained Aditya modestly.

Trevor Baldwin, who has been a member for as long as anyone can remember, also scored a draw against Chris. Apart from that, he defeated us all.

Nevertheless the strong showing from Kent Junior players and ex-Kent Juniors shows the strength of the Kent setup. The Chief Coach is none other than Chris Ward himself!

We are very grateful to Chris for taking part in this event, enthusing young people about chess and for his still formidable result. He is an inspiration to us all.

The full line-up of those who took part is below. The next event in Orpington will be the Orpington Junior Tournament and Training day, on the Friday of the half-term break (October 27th). One of the prizes for the best performance will be a place at next year's simul.

For more information and pictures, email

Aditya Verma                    187
Harry Dixon                      184
Jean-Baptiste Jugand        177
Hamit Soyel                      171
Kiran Shiatis                     168
Mikey Watson                   168
Jacob Watson                    167
Conrad Allison                  154
Raunak Rao                       151
John Cook                         146
Trevor Baldwin                 145
Shlok Verma                     130
Martin Zissell                    117
Michael Mc Naughton       116
Neil McQuillan                  110
Ansh Batura                      108
Huseyin Gueriane              92
David Fox                           94
Lev Mann                         75
Yifan Luo                          75

Wednesday 13 September 2017

1st Orpington Tournament and Training Day Results

Below are the results for the 1st Orpington Junior Tournament and Training day. Congratulations to everyone who took part and to Amherst school for winning the school prize.
Final Standings  - Bishops
  Place    Name                                                                  Rtg                          Age                Score 

  1       MERRIMAN, James     
  2-4    COATES, Dominic                  
           ANDERTON, George     
           RALPH, Simon                        
  5-7    DAVIES, Iris                            
           THOMAS, Heard                    
           KARAMAN, Kyle                   
  8-11  METHA, Shaurya                   
           FORRESTER, Ben                  
           BRETT, Toby                           
           MERCER, Samantha     
12-14  VARMA, Vaidehi                     
            PETERS, Luke                       
            SANKA, Amit Aryan     
15-17   CHOUDHARY, Shrey     
            PETERS, Karl                        

Final Standings  - Bishops
  Place    Name                                                                  Rtg                          Age                Score 
 1       BUCKLES-MOTTS, George    

 2-3    KANSAL, Satvik 

          JAJODIA, Rhea 

4-5     MAKHIJA, Yash 
          LI, Ming 

 6-10  PASARI, Rohan 
          POTHAPREGADA, Aryan 

          COOK, Oliver 

          WATSON, Scarlett 
          ANTHONY, Ashan 

11-12 SEN, Kunaal 

          DAVIES, Violet 

 13    SHUKLA, Shaurya 

by Swiss Perfect (TM)