CHESS buffs from across Bathurst came together this week vying for the title of Bathurst Junior Regional Chess Champions.
St Philomena's School hosted the event on Tuesday, with Assumption School A team taking out the honours.
O'Connell Public School A team placed second with St Phil's A team placing third.
Assumption A will now progress in the state-wide tournament.
Competition convener, and teacher at St Phil's, Shane Hanley, said chess is becoming an increasing popular sport thanks to the many benefits it brings to students, in particular, the ability to concentrate for long periods of time.
Mr Hanley said the competition this year was as strong as ever.
"This year we had six schools and 64 kids competing including kids from Lue Public School."
He said the kids absolutely loved competing.
"The competition took a bit of a knock last year because of Covid-19, but this year has been great.
He said as a sport chess continued to grow.
"At St Phil's we've got 60 kids out of 190 involved in chess.
"We had to whittle that down to eight for the regional final.
"But here at school we have Year 5 and Year 6 students mentoring kids in kindergarten and Year 1."
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