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The Independent Online
Britain's most exclusive chess event was launched this week at Simpson's-in-the-Strand, where representatives of 12 cognac-swilling teams from London's clubland gathered to inaugurate the Martell Chess Trophy.

After the draw for the first round, the RAC, traditionally the strongest chess players in Pall Mall, made plans for their first-round match against Simpson's own team. The Strand restaurant has, it is rumoured, recruited a powerful group of grandmaster and master ringers to boost their chances. "We'll play the match out of town at 9 o'clock on a Sunday morning," an RAC schemer confided to me. "That'll sort them out."

Sadly, the rules for the competition do not include the mandatory comsumption of cognac during the games. A tot per pawn captured, perhaps, and a bottle for a queen. Now that really would sort them out.