Oundle pupil earns place in national chess squad

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An Oundle schoolboy has crowned a year of success by qualifying for the national chess team.

Sam Herring, 13, from Barnwell, scored 7.5 out of 11 to secure his second half-norm – a level of performance in chess – in the British Rapidplay chess competition in Leeds on November 23 and 24.

It meant the Oundle School pupil had done enough to qualify for the English national squad, having previously earned a half-norm in the under-13s’ British championship in North Shields in July.

In August, Sam took part in an U13 tournament in Oldham where he came second, while at the Cambridge Rapidplay in late October he won a grading prize and shared the junior prize after scoring 3.5 out of 5.

Oundle’s chess coach Geoff Crook said: “Sam continues to excel not only in tournaments, but also playing in the Oundle School chess team, for which he has now been promoted to play top board.

“His hard work and study of the game is really bearing fruit and his inclusion in the national squad is just reward for his effort.”

Sam said: “I am delighted to have a gained a place in the national squad and I look forward to playing for my country in the new year.”