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The secret to chess success is solid strategy whilst staying calm and focused, according to the new under 8s Cornwall Chess Champion, Celeste Woodall.

Celeste, a prep 3 pupil at Truro High School, won the prestigious title during the county chess championships held at Penair School at the end of November. This success qualifies her for the London Junior Championships later this month.

Head of Truro High's chess club, international player Jeremy Menadue, said it had been a gruelling competition for Celeste involving six tough rounds with each game lasting up to an hour.

"Celeste showed great determination and deep thought and was the last to finish in several rounds," said Mr Menadue.

He went on to explain that Celeste, who has been playing chess for about a year now, has a promising future.

"She practises, has a good memory and is committed, all essential ingredients for chess success," said Mr Menadue.

Mr Menadue went on to add congratulations to Celeste's fellow Truro High pupil, Emma Day, who also competed in the championship - her first serious tournament. She scored an impressive 2 1/2 points.

Chess is recognised as being excellent brain exercise and extremely beneficial. It raises IQ, uses both sides of the brain, teaches planning and foresight, increases creativity, problem solving skills, reading skills, concentration and memory.

Truro High School Headmistress, Caroline Pascoe, said: "An outstanding performance from Celeste, we're very proud of both her and Emma and look forward to future chess successes."

Ends December 2013

Photo: Celeste Woodall

Media enquiries: Sue Bradbury PR Tel: 01872 863863 E:

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