Rohan Waithe of Lawrence T. Gay Memorial Primary and Michael Barker of Top Grade Academy shared the lead at the halfway mark of the inaugural Educators Chess Challenge being hosted by the Barbados Chess Federation over the weekend.
Waithe, on the playing side of the chess board for the first time in many years, showed that he has not lost his touch by defeating Clive Hammonds of the Alleyne School in round 1, drawing with Barker in round 2 and winning against Winston Chadderton of Alleyne School in round 3.
Barker, who unlike Waithe is still very much involved at the competitive level in both chess and draughts, picked up his points with a first round win against Coleridge & Parry’s Madibo Holder, the round two draw against Waithe and a third round victory over Jason Thompson of St. James Primary.
Waithe and Barker top the standings with 2 ? points, followed by Juliette Lindo of Alexandra School, Sylvester Fergusson of Deighton Griffith Secondary and Trevor Griffith of Grantley Adams Memorial in a three way tie for 3rd place with 2 points.
Lindo, formerly one of the island’s top female players, scored her points with a default win over Coleridge & Parry’s Alva Hood and a victory against Hammonds.
Fergusson, one of the top juniors of the 1980s, turn back the hands of time with two very well played wins against Anthony Earlam, a retired teacher, and Mark Lowe of the Samuel Jackman Prescod Polytechnic.
For the Chess Federation the Educators Chess Challenge has been a resounding success. With over 80 per cent of the participants having not played competitively since leaving the junior ranks as many as 20-plus years ago, the event has certainly rekindled some dormant interest while providing an opportunity for the Federation to give back to teachers who have over the years been the backbone of junior chess.