Archive for May 4th, 2013
The 5 teams in Devon’s 1st Division, play each other once, giving a total of 4 matches. Both Exeter and Exmouth have been a little slow off the mark this season, for one reason or another, and this was the third match for each, with Exeter having won their 1st two matches, while Exmouth had won one and drawn one. So there was everything to play for.
Luck played a part in the team selection for both sides. Exmouth were lucky in that former player, Ken Derrick, had decided to play a more active part in Devon chess, playing both for the county and his old club of Exmouth. This, combined with Dr. Underwood’s recent return from a two year stint in Connecticut, enabled the home team to be at full strength. On the other hand, one Exeter player found himself in another country and had to be substituted at short notice.
The first game to finish was on Bd. 4 where Kevin Hurst gained the upper hand against Simon Waters in a Petroff Defence, and it was all over in 21 moves. This was balanced by a win for Dr. Paulden who broke through Dr. Underwood’s king’s position, utilising long open lines for his pieces, queen, rook and bishops. Then Exeter took the lead as Andy Boyne got a knight established on the 6th rank, and kept all his other pieces working harmoniously. At this point, 2-1 down, and two players a pawn down, for little obvious compensation, even a drawn match looked optimistic.
It was, in fact, like a match of two halves, with the first 3 games finishing in 21, 28 and 32 moves respectively, while the other three all went right down to the wire; in 59, 63 & 64 moves. The 6 free players and non-playing captain all looked on nervously as the games went into extra time and fortunes gradually swung around.
Mark Abbott had looked the only one with a superior position, but this was gradually whittled away until an ending was reached where he only had 3 pawns against a rook. Fortunately, his king was able to protect them as they shuffled forward, like a shepherd coralling his last 3 sheep. The rook alone could do little as his king was trying to catch up with the action. Abbott finished prettily, underpromoting a pawn to a knight with check, allowing a 2nd pawn to queen.
Now 2-all, and the other two games, in which both Exmouth players had been a pawn down, were gradually turning around. The Stephens/Regis game had been positionally congested with 13 pawns still on the board late on, but Stephens was able to grab an open file for his rook, before invading Black’s position to winning effect. The Pope/Shaw game came down to a N + B each with a scattering of pawns, when Shaw opted to swap his bad bishop for Pope’s good knight, after which he was able to grab a few pawns and ran his h-pawn forward to queen, which Pope was unable to prevent.
So it finished 4 – 2, which sounds a healthy margin, but the result was in doubt to the very end. It was unusual at this level to have all six games ending decisively, with no draws, indicative of how all 12 players were committed to the cause.
|1||K. W. Derrick||207||0||1||A. Boyne||195|
|2||J. K. F. Stephens||192||1||0||D. Regis||179|
|3||J. Underwood||177||0||1||T. Paulden||177|
|4||K. J. Hurst||176||1||0||S. R. Waters||168|
|5||M. Shaw||166||1||0||S. Pope||158|
|6||M. V. Abbott||167||1||0||P. Dobber||142|
The snow-delayed match between Somerset and Gloucestershire was finally played at Cheltenham last weekend, resulting in a win for the visitors by 11-5. Somerset thereby won the 1st Division of the WECU Inter-county competition (the Harold Meek Cup) and now go forward to the National Stage Quarter-Finals to meet Lancashire at Bloxwich in a fortnight.
Somerset’s winners were Jack Rudd, Peter Chaplin, Andrew Footner, Chris Purry, Gerry Jepps, Chris McKinlay, Adrian Champion and team captain, Roger Knight. Gloucestershire’s two winners were Matthew Claypole and Pat Baker.
This was Somerset’s win from Bd. 5.
White: P. J. Meade (168). Black: A. F. Footner (186).
Chigorin Defence [D02].
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bf4 Bg4 4.e3 f6 Usual here is an immediate 4…e6 but the text prepares the more assertive …e5. 5.Be2 e5 6.dxe5 Bxf3 7.Bxf3 fxe5 8.Bg3 e4 This advance gives Black a grip on the centre. 9.Be2 An interesting, if unpredictable alternative, was 9.Bh5+ g6 10.Nc3 and now if 10…gxh5 11.Qxh5+ Kd7 12.Nxd5 Bd6 13.Bxd6 cxd6 14.Qg4+ Ke8 15.Qg7 Qa5+ 16.Nc3 Qe5 17.Qxb7 Nge7 18.Qxa8+ Kf7 19.Qb7 Rb8 20.Qa6 Rxb2 21.Qa3 Rb4 22.0–0 leaving White the exchange and 2 pawns up. 9…Bd6 10.c4 Bxg3 11.hxg3 dxc4 12.Nc3 Nf6 13.Bxc4 Qe7 14.Qa4 14.0–0 would have prevented Black from castling on either side in the short term. 14…0–0–0 Preventing White from also castling long. 15.Bb5 Rd6 16.Bxc6 Rxc6 17.Rd1 a6 18.0–0 Qe5 19.Qd4 White would like to exchange pieces, but Black can see the weakness of the h-file. 19…Qh5 20.Nxe4 Ng4 21.Rfe1 Also not good enough is 21.Qd7+ Kb8 22.Rfe1 Rh6 23.Kf1 Rf8 24.Ke2 (24.Qxg7 Nxe3+ 25.Rxe3 Qxd1+ 26.Re1 Rh1#) 24…Nxf2+. 21…Rh6 0–1. White resigned. Play might have continued 22.Kf1 Nh2+ 23.Kg1 Nf3+ 24.Kf1 Nxe1 25.Qd7+ Kb8 26.Kxe1 Qg6 27.Rd4 Rh2.
Somerset resident Mickey Adams is currently playing in the Alekhine Memorial Tournament and after 5 rounds was lying 2nd jointly with Boris Gelfand, Lev Aronian and Laurent Fressinet a half point behind Vachier-Lagrave.
In last week’s position, Evans played 1.Bc6! offering his queen, but if taken he had 2.RxB mate, and Black can’t take the rook because his queen is pinned.
Here is an Adams finish from 1998. How did Black (to move) force resignation with a 2-move combination?