Winner Of the Edinburgh Chess Club Lightning Championship 2022/3, Petros Wallden, being presented with the trophy by council member and tournament organiser Raj Bhopal

On Tuesday 20th of June 2023, our club rooms were humming with a mixture of excitement and concentration as 24 players battled for the historical trophy for the lightning championship, played with five minutes on the clock each and 7 games.

It was a close battle with Petros Wallden winning with 6.5/7, ahead of Craig Thomson, (5.5/7), Raj Bhopal (5/7) and world under-eight years blitz champion, Louis Cheng (5/7) in fourth place.

Participants in the 2022/3 Edinburgh Chess Club Lightning Championship

The full cross-table of results:

Report by organiser Raj Bhopal

Dear Challengers Players,

Below you may find all the results/standing in cross-table format and the pairing for round 5 of the Challengers tournament. If something doesn’t add up please let me know!

Unfortunately Louis Chang who was co-leading with 4 points is not around for the remaining rounds. Juniper Preston also had to withdraw.

Emails/contact are available – if you can’t find your opponent’s contact, let me know.

As usual, the player with the white pieces should contact his opponent to arrange a convenient day for the match.

Please play your match in the next couple of weeks if possible!

The club should be open Mon-Thu from 7:30 pm.

If you have any questions or something comes up, please let me know!


Andre Antunes, Tournament Director

Dear Club Member

First of all, another success to report. Last weekend the club defeated Edinburgh West 6-2 in the final of the Richardson Cup, Scotland’s premier team competition.

Activity over the next few months:

  • We have 2 teams entered in the Edinburgh Summer Cup, Edinburgh and Tiger Cubs;
  •  Club Championship and Challengers events final rounds;
  •  Tuesday evening casual games will continue as usual over the summer;
  •  The Club Allegro Championship will take place next month – details to follow;
  •  We will run some Junior Training sessions on early Wednesday evenings. The first one will run from 6.15pm to 7.30pm this Wednesday 24th May. It will be open to all junior members. No pre registration required – but do get in touch if you have any questions;
  • We will also host a blitz event after the training on Wednesday from 7.30pm – open to all members. Again just arrive at the club to play.

Best wishes,

Neil, President


Wednesday 15th To Sunday 19th February 2023

As part of its bicentenary celebrations Edinburgh Chess Club is hosting the “She Plays To Win” (SPTW) chess tournament, being organised by International Master Lorin D’Costa, promoting the attainment of Woman International Master (WIM) norms.

This is an invitational 10 player WIM all-play-all (double rounds at 10am and 3pm with on Sunday one final game).  There is a stellar international competitors list:






Ketevan Arakhamia-Grant

Edinburgh based Grand Master Ketevan (Keti) Arakhamia-Grant, is one of Scotland’s leading players having participated in eleven chess Olympiads representing first USSR, then Georgia and finally Scotland and who has won the Scottish Open Championship 3 times

Two of Slovakia’s top women players: Woman International Master (WIM) Svetlana Sucikova, currently undertaking her research work in Scotland, and Woman FIDE Master (WFM) Monika Rojickova




Svetlana Sucikova

Fiona Steil-Antoni

Luxembourg WIM chess player, chess YouTube streamer and commentator Fiona Steil-Antoni
Dutch WFM Maaike Keetman, who is also vice president of content (and author!) for Chessable

Maaike Keetman







Louise Head           Zoe Varney           Kamila   Hryshchenko

A strong contingent of English players including WFM and English Women’s Chess Champion (in 2017, 2019 and 2021) Louise Head, who is currently undertaking her doctorate at Edinburgh University, along with Kamila Hryshchenko, who was part of the GB team at the World Congress of Chess Composition 2022 in Fujairah, and Woman Candidate Master (WCM) Zoe Varney, who was the English U20 Woman Champion in 2019


From Andorra WFM Andrea Henderson De La Fuente is competing




Andrea Henderson De La Fuente


                                                                  Suzie Cooke


Last but not least is Suzie Cooke who is also one of Scotland’s top players and who represented Scotland at the recent Olympiads in Chennai

We have the pairings now for the tournament and the first-round draw is:

The remaining draw can be found at (see

A FIDE all-play-all Challengers event is also being run in parallel with players from England, India and Scotland.  Arbiters are International Arbiter Alex McFarlane and FIDE Arbiter David Clayton.

The event is also being supported by Chess Scotland.

SPTW is a UK Girls Chess Project to try and encourage more girls to participate and learn chess in a fun environment.  SPTW is run by the current England International Women’s Chess Coach Lorin D’Costa who has successfully been coaching girls’ chess nationally and internationally for over 11 years.

Further details are on both the club’s web site ( and Chess Scotland’s web site (



Following up on the previous post here are the final placings and a short summary by Alan Scrimgour.

Scotland finished in 23rd position out of 42 teams, winning 4 matches and losing 5.
The players’ score were:

Peter Jamieson 4½/7
Alastair White 2/6
Alan Scrimgour 2½/7
David Levy 3½/7
Raj Bhopal 6½/8

It was good to finish with a win after a hard competition.
We all agreed that the tournament had been well run with friendly and
efficient arbiters in a spacious playing hall, the hotel was excellent and
Dresden an excellent location with many cultural attractions that would
make for a good city break destination.

Full report:

Scotland's finest
Scotland’s finest – Photo by Alastair White

Club members Alastair White and Raj Bhopal are representing Scotland at the European Seniors team event for players over 65.

The team is performing pretty well so far with three wins (all 3-1) and four very narrow (2½-1½) losses. Alastair, playing mostly on board 2, has so far scored 4 draws and 1 loss, while Raj is in fine form with 4½/5 on board 4.

Details can be read on the Chess Scotland site

The following game is one by Raj

Notes by Raj
This was a tense positional struggle, where I had a modest advantage throughout most of the game. Black equalised once or twice but at no time had any advantage. Everything hung on whether White could take advantage of Black's bad Bishop.
Paradoxically, and surprisingly, White offered an exchange of bishops,
leaving knights and 6 pawns each. This offer of exchange must have come as a welcome relief, but exchanging bishops was a mistake for black. White's king penetrated into the black queenside. There seemed to be, nonetheless, an impasse. White had, however, reserved one tempo. P to a4 created a Zugwang. Black's blockading king had to give way for the loss of a pawn, making the a pawn passed. Black resigned on the 47th move when material was equal.