The Junior section at Harrow Chess Club runs every Thursday at 6.00, through until 7.15. The first session in the new season will be on 5th September, and carries on until the first Thursday in July, with a brief break between Christmas and the New Year. Our venue is at the upper hall at Victoria Hall, Sheepcote Road, in the centre of Harrow.
This is very much the junior section of a larger club, and indeed Harrow Chess Club was the “Club of the Year”, awarded by the English Chess Federation in 2012. One of our main aims is to give any player with the right ability the chance to become strong players against testing opposition from adult players. We run two junior teams (plus four adult teams) in the local Hillingdon League. We also encourage stronger players to take part in the club championship, known for decades as “the Swiss”.
Of course, before a player ever becomes good at chess, either she or he will need to learn the moves, and to play against friends (opponents?!) at their own strength. Often the best way to become good players is to play lots of games of chess. Both players will learn a lot from each other. Our teaching tends to be informal, and the main chess coordinator (International Master, Colin Crouch) will give every opportunity to give practice games, or one-to-one teaching, for small groups.
Usually a bright player at the age of about 7 or 8 will be ready to learn to play chess, and learn quickly. Obviously older players will also learn and improve quickly. The age of 6 is also a good time to start, although maybe many will not quite be ready to play a complicated game of chess. Only the really sharpest thinkers will be able to understand the game properly at the age of 4, but more would be ready to play at the age of 5. Having said that, if a younger brother or sister wants to go along to the club, and to try to learn something about chess, then we will give any opportunity to learn from the game.
At Harrow Chess Club, we do not run outside junior tournaments, but there are plenty of tournaments available during the various weekends. We will provide links to the various events. The most important events in the early part of the season would be the various qualifying events of the London Junior Chess Congress. Then there are many other events throughout the season.
Our website has been out of order than we would have liked, but we are back in action. Watch this space!
Colin Crouch IM
In December 2012 Magnus Carlsen won the prestigious London Chess Classic and in doing so he became the highest-rated chess player in the history of the game, beating Garry Kasparov's 13-year-old record. Carlsen followed up this performance with another phenomenal tournament win at Wijk aan Zee, pushing his peak rating to an astronomical 2872. He didn t lose a single game in either tournament.
What is Carlsen's secret? How did an already world-class player succeed in reaching this unprecedented level where he was regularly beating the world's strongest grandmasters? In this book, International Master Colin Crouch provides answers to these questions. Crouch studies Carlsen's progress in recent years and demonstrates how he learned lessons from previous setbacks, turned weaknesses into strengths, losses into draws, and draws into wins. By doing so Carlsen was able to elevate his play to a stratospheric level, but any aspiring chess player can use similar methods to improve their game.