Beware the Latvians are coming
Our Fighting Warriors team has stood proudly at the top of the Gameknot team table in terms of overall team score for close to five years now.
Throughout that period we have been shadowed by the New York Lovers & Latvia team who have remained second behind us throughout.
Over the first half of this year we organised a successful push to pull further ahead of New York, leaving even more clear blue water between us and the rest of the Gameknot universe.
We are still well ahead of the pack but the gap has closed slightly over the past 4-5 months.
In early December we stand with a total of 5025 as our overall net gain position on Gameknot. New York are behind us with a score of 4676. You can see today’s position here from this link gameknot.com
Around the mid-year point we were 500 points clear of New York. So you can see from this that our lead has been cut to around 400 in front. This is still a healthy lead but we need to be aware of what is happening behind us.
We have always adopted a different philosophy and approach to New York in terms in terms of size and activity.
We operate with a core team strength of between 80-90 players with a large core of our team remaining static and stable now over a number of years. I have reduced this recently by removing a number of inactive team members.
We have a slow turnover of players and this has always been a key strength of our team and we are always careful over recruitment.
Players remain with us as Fighting Warriors because they enjoy team chess and for many team matches make up the majority of their GK chess activity. This is why my co-captains and I work hard to ensure we give all players as close to the full quota of team games they request in line with their preferences.
This usually means we will have between 3-400 active team games running at any time. This takes a lot of work to maintain.
New York, on the other hand, run with less than 30 members and at the moment only have around 40 active team games running.
This difference in team size, activity and commitment to team chess is the ace in our hand. And this is why we focus each month in our MVP reports on analyzing individual performance based on net gain score.
In truth, the reason for the gap closing in recent months has been more down to us slipping backwards than it is to New York moving forwards - yet another reason why timeouts hurt us so badly.
We can rebuild the gap quickly with a collective push to improve our own individual overall net gain scores over the next 2-3 months. I am hoping that we can each do our bit in delivering this.
I will continue to monitor the competitive position with New York and with this background in place we can take a look at how well we did in November.
Just over 30 of us managed a net gain score in November with one or two spectacular performances for to celebrate.
Among those with gains was our consistently strong performer cyrenaics – our Greek Warrior Takis from Athens – who delivered a gain of seven points in the month.
Just ahead of him on +8 points were mitchle – Lloyd from Pennsylvania in the US – and meandyou_1 also from the US of A.
A point ahead on them with an excellent +9 was naitsirhc12345 – Christian from the Philippines.
However, at the top of the pile and so the MVP player of the month for November was our Viking Warrior icefox – Thorir from Skjervøy in Norway – who finished the month with a net gain of 11 points for the team.
Well done to icefox and to all those with gains in the month. Let’s see if we can’t rebuild our dominance in December.
So now trying not to leave anyone out, here is the full list of those who returned net positive scores during November:
degrotebozewolf; takeplay; bosk; drivingmad; tjbuege
mysticknight; searcoid; grogygrmln; corneliusblisand; rodin; pioko5
ilpo; deltawing; vj84529; fernandomartins; knightplay; eduherminio; gamestalker; hjemcall; electriflyer; sycv; pinzerl
Onwards and upwards as ever
The Fighting Warriors are now on Facebook. Click here to go there and follow us by 'liking' the page
Our Captain Andy
Andy has been Captain of The Fighting Warriors team since August 2009.
Andy joined the Warriors in October 2005 and has played throughout this time under the Gameknot username wanderingwolf. He was a co-Captain before stepping up to the Captaincy following team election.
Andy lives in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk in the UK.
Earl is a former Captain of the Fighting Warriors and has rarely not formed part of the captaincy team.
He joined the team in August 2006 and plays under the username earlkarjohn. He lives in Hook, Hampshire in the UK.
Steve is another longstanding and valuable member of the captaincy team.
He joined the Warriors in September 2006 and plays under the username sherbert. He lives in New Hampshire in the US.
Jeremy is the third member of the vital co-captaincy team.
He joined the Warriors in February 2009 and plays under the username bobbob78. He lives in Phoenix, Arizona.