Harrison College are still the kings and queens of secondary schools’ chess.
The Crumpton Street, St Michael school retained their title by overcoming arch-rivals Queen’s College on the second and final day of the Barbados Chess Federation’s Inter-School Secondary Championships at The St. Michael School on Saturday.
The two schools were separated by just one point (63-62) at the half-way stage of the competition but Harrison College withstood their challengers to emerge winners by a scoreline of 126-121.
Boasting ten Carifta selectees in their 15-member squad, Harrison College justified their tag as favourites and won two of the three age-groups.
They were most impressive in the Under-20 section, prevailing 41-30 with a team that included four members – Nitin Mahtani, Kyle Sandiford, Gabriela Cumberbatch and Taiye Estwick – heading off to the 7th CARIFTA Chess Championships in Suriname over the Easter weekend. They took a step towards the title by brushing aside St. Michael 10-0 and also enjoyed a bye.
Queen’s College were made to fight harder before completing a 6-4 win against their ‘B’ team and also had a bye.
The battle between the two schools in the Under-15 division was much more closer but Harrison College, fielding CARIFTA medallists Leigh Sandiford and Azaria Johnson, along with fellow national selectees Pritika Kandamaran and Gaybrianna Moore and Amelia Valdez, edged out their opponents 53-52.
Both schools were big winners on the final day with Harrison College defeating their Under-13 team 9-1, Providence 10-0 and Queen’s College Under-13 10-0, while Queen’s College beat their Under-13 ‘A’ team 8-2, their Under-13 ‘B’ team 10-0 and Alexandra 10-0.
Queen’s College, however, enjoyed the better of Harrison College in the Under-13 section which was merged with the Under-15 division. The Husbands, St. James school took the honours 39-32 but it was not enough to deny Harrison College the overall title.