Four students from The Cathedral School will travel to Brisbane on Friday to compete in the State Final of the Gardiner Interschool Chess competition after winning the Northern Region final held in Townsville. The event to be held at Brisbane State High School this Saturday and Sunday will see the team compete against 19 schools from around Queensland who were also regional final winners from 12 different parts of the state.
The Cathedral School Chess Coordinator, Mr Damian Lowrie said there were three stages of competition to the regional final held earlier in the year “Rounds one and two bring schools and students from all around their region to play against each other in an attempt to qualify to play in the ‘premier division’ in the final round of the regional stage of competition. The team that wins the final round of the regional competition is invited to participate at the State Finals in Brisbane.”
“This year, eight secondary school teams from the Northern region participated in the final round of the competition. In an incredibly close finish, The Cathedral School Premier team won on countback” continued Mr Lowrie.
“The game of chess has been played for over 1,500 years. Over the course of history it has taken on many forms and has been enjoyed by kings and paupers alike. Today, chess is an incredibly popular activity that is played socially throughout the world. It attracts players of all ages and walks of life. There are many and varied reasons why people find chess such an interesting pastime; however, at its core is about testing your skill and mettle against that of an equally determined opponent” said Mr Lowrie.
Mr Lowrie said there are extensive findings from world-wide research which reveal the huge benefits for children learning to play chess. Playing chess can help children to develop a range of skills such as, patience, discipline, logic, reasoning, and creativity. “Participating in interschool chess competitions like the one offered by Gardiner provide students with a unique opportunity to develop these skills in a safe, social and friendly environment.”
Year 12 student Nelaka Rupasinghe said the team is looking forward to competing in Brisbane “We are really excited to be facing off against some of the state’s best chess players.”
“Hopefully we have luck on our side and can make it through to the national finals” added Nelaka.
If successful in the State Final the students will qualify for a National Final to be held in Adelaide in December.