There are few landmarks events for kids across the globe, which an aspiring young chess player should try to play and one amongst them is the Dubai Junior Chess Championship. Held regularly since 2001 at the picturesque, Dubai Chess & Culture in July/August, this event attracts chess talents across the world.
I had the privilege to play in the Dubai International Open in the year 2011 and I have to admit that I have never seen a more beautiful chess club than this! The building is shaped like a 'Rook', which has a giant tournament hall at the ground floor, 1-analysis room, 3-training halls, reception area, VIP area and a cafeteria (with unlimited supply of free mineral water, tea and coffee). The first floor houses the office of their club and library.
The playing conditions are excellent with an individual table of international standards for each board!
The biggest advantage is that the events held are very close to classical tournaments of of the past with round-a-day! This 9-round tourney is held over a period of 7-days, which means, the players have double rounds only on 2-days. The double rounds are ideally spaced at 10.30 am & 6.30 pm, which allows enough rest and preparation between the rounds. The single rounds are scheduled at 6.00 pm in the evening, which again allows enough time for preparation in the morning and a rest in the afternoon.
What about prize money? Well, the prizes offered are simply great - US $ 10,000 for Juniors & US $ 45,000 for International Open!!
I have been planning participation of our promising students since last 3-years however; for some reason or other the things were not falling in place. This all changed after January 2014 as more of our students are now participating in the state, national and tournaments of importance. Of course, the success achieved by these students spurs other children, to play in such type of events!
For this edition of Dubai Juniors, the participation from our school were (with performance):
Rating: 1381, Start Rank: 32, Points: 7/9, Final Ranking: Joint 3rd (6th Overall), Rating Gain: + 117, Prize: US $ 740
Rating: 1457, Start Rank: 32, Points: 6.5/9, Final Ranking: Joint 4th (12th Overall), Prize: US $ 165
Rating: 1136, Start Rank: 62, Points: 6/9, Final Ranking: Joint 5th (19th Overall), Rating Gain: 170 points
As can be seen from the results, the boys have performed beyond my expectations (and everybody else!) and, I am sanguine that this outing will boost their confidence to scale chess excellence.