Homburg Apeldoorn Dutch blitz champion

| 0 | Chess Event Coverage
In the 'subjective reporting' category, we bring you the following news: yesterday, Homburg Apeldoorn 1 became blitz champion of The Netherlands. Following the rollercoaster-ride of IM's Manuel Bosboom (12,5 out of 13) and Merijn van Delft (12 out of 13), Roeland Pruijssers and myself could only follow humbly, though Roeland did this with considerably more gusto than yours truly.

From left to right Roeland Pruijssers, Arne Moll, an arbiter, Merijn van Delft and Manuel Bosboom (photo: Karel van Delft)

The winning team won all their matches against other clubs. Their party became even bigger when Apeldoorn's second team won first prize in the Second League. Second in the A group became the foursome of Utrecht 1, led by the sympathetic Australian IM David Smerdon, and the strong team of Bobby Fischer was able to grab third place. HMC Calder, in spite of their super chess combo Jan Willem de Jong + Bianca Muhren, had to settle for fourth place.

The blitz championship for club teams has a very rich tradition. Van Wely, Piket and Korchnoi are only a few of the many great names that have participated in the past. In this light, yesterday's turnup can be regarded as slightly disappointing. Four Master League teams had signed up, and only two (2) teams from the First League. No doubt this was partly due to the German Bundesliga weekend, but also the early starting time (10 a.m. on a Sunday isn't to anyone's liking) and the playing tempo (7 minutes per game) must have contributed. Seven minutes? Who on earth made that up? Is anybody at all happy with it? I bet it wasn't the countless youth players I saw walking around...

And besides, with thirteen rounds, four minutes per round equals an hour on the whole day. And because the time between the rounds could also, admitted the organisers, could be shortened somewhat (it often happened that everyone was simply ready to play, whereas the arbiter asked the players to please 'wait for the schedule), the tournament could also be held easily at noon. That's much better for all chess players from up north or down south, isn't it? By the way, yhe playing hall (the Golden Tupid Hotel, The Hague), was excellent. Not a local centre or a sports hall, but a professional atmosphere and good service. Let's hope this attracts more strong teams next year. And please, just give us five minutes per game and allow us some banging on the clocks. That's what blitz players like, you know.

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