4NCL: 3-4 March 2007

Saturday 3 March

1 w Corkett, Anthony R 2340 - Dorrington, Christopher 2240
2 b Poulton, James 2368 - Farrand, Julian T 2164
3 w Webb, Richard M 2272 - Hodgson, John H 2225
4 b Upton, Ian J 2270 - Kilpatrick, Callum 2142
5 w Yeo, Michael J 2144 1 - 0 Levermore, Peter A 2104
6 b Neil, David R 2171 1 - 0 Bhatia, Kanwal K (F) 2047
7 w Simons, Martin J 2223 - Moore, John C 2032
8 b Khoo, Selina (F) 1995 - Wells, Daniel 2022
        5 - 3    

As the score table suggests, this was quite a solid performance. Curiously, the two games we looked most like losing were the ones we ended up winning. Our "youthful" opponents outaged us on at least 3 boards (and we probably have the oldest average age in the division!) We welcomed back Jim Poulton from his travels - he was last seen getting us promoted to Division 1 in 2004.

The opposition had clearly done a fair amount of preparation for us. Richard found himself playing against his favourite Dragon, but in a line that he knew his theory wasn't up to date so he called an early halt. Ian's opponent had studied all his games, so it was probably fortunate that Ian chose the MacCutcheon which he had only used once before (in public!). His king went on a wander from f8 to c8, before he too felt that he wasn't making any progress. Martin's preparation landed him in a pleasant looking middle game in which his opponent had one very bad bishop but also a very good bishop. Selina grabbed a pawn but her opponent always had a reasonable amount of compensation. The score remained 2-2 for some time with some uncertainty as to where any wins might come from. Jim might have had some pressure, but a draw always looked the most likely result. Tony eventually won a pawn, but his opponent didn't even need to swap down to R+B v R to hold the draw. My game followed a similar course to my game against Barbican 2, including the first 18 moves. I was a pawn up, but hadn't unscrambled my pieces well enough when the attack came. Fortunately, my opponent then swapped all the pieces off to leave me a pawn up in a double rook ending that even I was able to convert. Dave's preparation came unstuck at move 4, but I was surprised to discover that 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.c3 d5 4.Qa4 Qd6!? has been played before with quite good results. He lost a pawn, but with reasonable compensation and then offered a draw. His opponent felt obliged to play on given the match situation and made some weakening moves so that by move 40, although still a pawn down, Dave looked to be winning. It took him some time to snaffle various pawns and swap queens off, but the threat of going to the pub without him meant that he finished just after 8 pm.

The new venue at Wokefield Park has a number of plus points. In-house catering is not one of them and we made a wise move booking into a pub about 3 miles north that served Abbott Ale as well as curries. Bruce had clearly been smoking something when on emerging from the pub all he could say was "Look at the moon, look at the moon.....", but otherwise we might have missed the lunar eclipse!

Sunday 4 March

1 w Teplitsky, Jan * 2446 1 - 0 Poulton, James 2368
2 b Van de Griendt, Jan W 2366 - Corkett, Anthony R 2340
3 w Kaid, Almar 2276 - Webb, Richard M 2272
4 b Adams, David M 2232 0 - 1 Upton, Ian J 2270
5 w Barrett, Steve J 2215 - Simons, Martin J 2223
6 b Cumbers, Paul 2144 - Neil, David R 2171
7 w Mohammad, Mursal 1960 0 - 1 Yeo, Michael J 2144
8 b Khakimova, Masura (F) 1885 0 - 1 Khoo, Selina (F) 1995
        3 - 5    

An unexpectedly good result against dangerous opponents. The opposition were weaked somewhat from Saturday, but this meant that both Martin and Dave were playing people they had lost to before.

Having gone 10 years without winning 2 games in a weekend, I managed to repeat the January novelty. I wheeled out a rubbish line from my garbage collection which was good enough to enable me to castle on move 20 winning the exchange. Richard, Tony and then Martin all manged to equalise helped in some cases by the opposition using copious amounts of time. Jim's opponent was down to 10 minutes for 20 moves not long after leaving theory, but Jim then took over 45 minutes on one move and lost in the ensuing time scramble. Ian always looked a bit better against a Chigorin and was also helped by his opponent getting in serious time trouble.

3 - 2 at the time control then produced a lengthy stand-off. Dave's game, having been a bit worse, was by now completely drawn, but his opponent wouldn't agree a draw until Board 8 finished. Selina was a pawn up and was therefore forced to play on and win, which she did most impressively.

This removes the threat of relegation for another season. Promotion is a possibility, but not guaranteed even in the unlikely event that we win our last 3 matches.

Saturday 3 March

1 w Headlong, Timothy 2211 1 - 0 Tunks, Dominic 2115
2 b Richmond, Peter A 2238 1 - 0 Clark, Ian C 2123
3 w Girdlestone, Paul (def) 2225 0 - 1 Rutter, Nicholas 2189
4 b Haydon, Richard 2203 0 - 1 Pleasants, Allan J 2075
5 w Rabbitt, Michael 2165 0 - 1 Jenks, Bruce 2099
6 b Hall, Daniel J 2082 0 - 1 Pym, Thomas W 2053
7 w Bourne, Johnathan 2086 0 - 1 Gregory, Keith D 2077
8 b Thomas, Nicola D (F) 1910 0 - 1 Norman, Dinah (F) 2003
        2 - 6    

Ian Clark reports:

The match against Brown Jack was expected to be very difficult as we were outgraded on 7 boards. The match started well for us in that they defaulted on board 3 ( I thought there was going to be another default as Dominic arrived hour late ). I had a exciting game against Peter Richmond and looked to be winning but was at best equal and missed a queen retreat that would have left things even and went for sacrificial attack that lost quickly. Dominic finished just before me when missing a piece exchange that left another piece en-prise. I then went to go through my game thinking we were doing well in other games and when I came back found that Bruce, Tom and Keith had all won. This left us 4-2 up. Dinah’s position always looked good and she finished off her opponent very well leaving Allan against Richard Haydon. He had got to a Q & 5P versus Q & 3P with a big passed pawn. Allan finished off his strong opponent in fine style. This gave us probably our best ever win and which could well prove vital for both match points and board points at the end of the season.

Sunday 4 March

1 w Tunks, Dominic 2115 0 - 1 Lyell, Mark 2212
2 b Clark, Ian C 2123 0 - 1 Hulmes, David I 2212
3 w Rutter, Nicholas 2189 - Mulligan, Stephen 2178
4 b Pleasants, Allan J 2075 1 - 0 Redmond, John * 2226
5 w Jenks, Bruce 2099 0 - 1 Hughes, Howard R 2208
6 b Pym, Thomas W 2053 - Spence, David 2166
7 w Marsh, Roger 2094 - Savory, Richard 2119
8 b Norman, Dinah (F) 2003 0 - 1 Milligan, Helen (F) 2041

Captain Ian:

The match against North West Eagles 2 was even more difficult with their board 5 being over 2200. The match did not start too well with Bruce and I losing very quickly and Dominic and Dinah followed on shortly. Roger came in for Sunday and obtained a draw. Nick playing his first game of weekend was offered a draw after only 15 moves which he turned down but it soon became clear that there was no way forward and he agreed a draw. Tom also held on well to get a draw.

Our only success was Allan who had another good win managing to finish off his bishop + 3 pawns v opposite colour bishop and 1 pawn. This meant a loss of 5.5 to 2.5 but overall a good weekend.

Last modified: March 13, 2007

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