This week the 100th British Chess Championships got started, with many events taking place over the course of the next fortnight. The highlight is undoubtably the Championship itself with GM Gawain Jones returning as champion to defend his title against a field including another 12 Grandmasters - most notably David Howell, 2nd seed at 2639.
The event is an 11 round tournament with a slow time control of 40/100min, 20/50min and then 15min with an increment of 30secs/move from the start of the game. Hopefully this will lead to a high level of play.
At the time of writing two rounds have been played and the seeds are finding it tough to win as Black! In round two the top 5 players playing Black were held to draws, including Gawain. There's a long way to go and it's generally felt that second week form more important but still noone wants to fall too far behind early on.
With White the GMs were merciless, the highlight of the 2nd round was a quick win from Simon Williams:
Details for the event can be found at: http://www.britishchesschampionships.co.uk/ and there are plenty of games on live boards - http://englishchess.org.uk/BCC/live-games/
I hope to be reporting more on this event towards it's conclusion, until then check out the live games and post comments below!