In the 2013 tournament Jacobs seemed to have the championship in the bag as he was easily winning his final game in the Open grade, against Bailey Diack from Tamatea High School. But Jacobs overlooked a checkmate threat and Diack won the game and the title.
This time Jacobs, a 16-year-old Year 12 student at Taradale High School, made no such mistake as he won his final game against another strong player, Charlie Li from Napier Boys High School. That made him feel a little better about last year's setback, he said.
"It was even till I trapped his bishop with my pawns," he said of the final-round game.
Jacobs added that he was not really taking chess too seriously these days, although he had earlier been a regular player at the Hawke's Bay club. "I just came to get a good game," he said.
He actually ended up first equal, on four and a half points out of five, with Lindisfarne College student Sebastian Ayson-Macfarlane, who did particularly well because he is in Year Nine. The Open grade is mainly for students from years 12 and 13 but younger players like Ayson-Macfarlane and Li are allowed in if they have demonstrated their strength. The title went to Jacobs on tie-break.
The total entry of 64 was an increase on last year's, and Hawke's Bay Chess president Martin Stafford said the standard of play had risen too. Sports centre manager Opal Taylor said she was pleased to see that more girls were playing this year.
The tournament was organised jointly by the Hastings District Council and Hawke's Bay Chess Inc.
Results, top three in each grade -
Young chess player on top a year after shattering loss (HB Today)