Junior High School pupils hope to checkmate opponents

editorial image

A chess team of eight primary school pupils from Bearsden are all set for a tournament in Manchester next week.

The Giga Final, as it is called, will see youngsters from across Britain compete in the UK’s biggest childrens chess tournament.

The pupils who are all from the High School of Glasgow Junior School are among 2,000 children who have qualified event which is part of the Delancy UK Schools Chess Challenge.

In the youngest section, four Junior School pupils recorded high scores at the chess mega finals in the west of Scotland round in April to reach the UK Giga Finals.

These were Gia Kohli (7) from Strathblane, Eklavya Singh (9) from Bearsden, Michael Moroz (9) from Knighstwood and Ibraham Khan (6) from Thornliebank.

Gia, gained the prestigious title of “chess suprema” and Eklavya and Michael both won the title “chess supremo”.

In the older primary pupil sections, Ritvik Maheshwari (10) and Alex Sevic (10) both from Bearsden, Sayd Khan (9) from Thornliebank, and Sahib Kohli (10) from Strathblane qualified for next week’s Giga Finals.

Chess enthusiast, 10-year old Ritvik, has played chess for over five years and already has taken part in several competitions. He also qualified for last year’s UK Chess Giga Finals.

Ritvik from Bearsden said: “I am looking forward to going to the Giga Finals again this year and taking part next week in Manchester.

“The Giga Finals are a massive event with hundreds of pupils taking part and it is very exciting”

The Junior High School’s contingent of eight qualifying pupils is the biggest from any school in Scotland.

And much of the pupils’ success is down to the Junior School’s Chess Club every Wednesday, with instructor Michael Hanley.

“It is great to see our pupils doing so well and reaching the UK giga finals”, says Junior School headteacher Mrs Karen Waugh. “We wish them all well in Manchester next week”

Three other pupils from Dunbartonshire schools qualified for the Giga-Finals but in the senior pupils category. They are Jack Chateau-Loney and Thomas Crowe from Douglas Academy and in the under 11 year olds section, Asinine Parakramawansha from Woodhill Primary in Bishopbriggs. From their high scores in the qualifying West of Scotland mega-finals, both Jack and Thomas became “chess supremos” and Asinine a “chess suprema”.