Steve fi­nally meets his match

Shepparton News - - NEWS - By Laura Briggs

A keen chess en­thu­si­ast has gone to bat­tle at last.

Shep­par­ton Vil­lages res­i­dent Steve Sz­mola, 91, ap­peared on the front page of the News last week in search of a chess op­po­nent.

Zaryhe Briggs, 10, was not wor­ried about the age gap and was will­ing to take on the chal­lenge of Mr Sz­mola.

Zaryhe said he too had a dif­fi­cult time find­ing op­po­nents who would play against him.

He said his Nan saw last week’s story in the news­pa­per and told him about Mr Sz­mola’s search.

Zaryhe jumped at the op­por­tu­nity to play the game he loved and ar­ranged a time to take on Mr Sz­mola.

He said he en­joyed the chal­lenge of chess and the think­ing and con­cen­tra­tion in­volved.

Zaryhe said he owned a spe­cial edi­tion Mario Kart chess set his grandpa, Larry, had oc­ca­sion­ally played on against him.

‘‘But my Pa gets an­gry be­cause the queen is a boy and he can’t see the names on the bot­tom of the pieces prop­erly, so he doesn’t re­ally know what he’s mov­ing,’’ Zaryhe said.

In the early min­utes of Zaryhe’s and Mr Sz­mola’s first chess game con­cen­tra­tion lev­els were high and they were de­ter­mined to bring their A-game.

Shep­par­ton Vil­lages spokes­woman Jo Breen said as a re­sult of last week’s story, Mr Sz­mola had also found an­other op­po­nent in a chess en­thu­si­ast from Tatura’s Park Villa.

She said the two 91-year-old men would meet this month for a chess show­down.

Pic­ture: Ray Sizer

Meet­ing of the minds: Shep­par­ton Vil­lages res­i­dent Steve Sz­mola, 91, found a chess op­po­nent in Zaryhe Briggs, 10.

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