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Dave Rumens 1939-2017 (22.07.2017.) 943

The British Championships at Llandudno start next Saturday, with a total entry in the 21 different sections standing at 923. Most interest will naturally fall on the top section, the overall British Championship, with an entry of 100. There’s no sign of the current Champion, Michael Adams, or Nigel Short entering the lists, but with 3 other members of England’s Olympiad team, David Howell, Gawain Jones and Luke McShane as top seeds, there should be plenty to maintain the chess public’s interest throughout the 9 rounds.

The death of Dave Rumens at the age of 77 was announced earlier this month.

He was selected to represent England in the Glorney Cup U-18 international tournament in Glasgow 1957, in company with Michael Mcdonald-Ross and John Lawrence. Consequently, when, in the wake of the Fischer-Spassky match of 1972, a tidal wave of new weekend congresses swept the country as every town and city in the UK wanted to harness the enthusiasm this generated, and Rumens, being in his prime, was ideally placed to benefit as he won 1st prizes time after time throughout the ‘70s.

As White. he loved playing f4 in the opening, as in the Bird’s Opening, and he was particularly ruthless against the Sicilian Defence, when he ventured an early f4, which gained him many wins and became known as the Grand Prix Attack.

In later years he could be seen at British Championships, hanging about waiting for one or more of his child protégés to finish, before he helped them with post-game analysis.

Here is a typical game of his from Hastings in 1975.

White: David E. Rumens. Black:  Glenn Lambert.

Bird’s Opening [A02]

1.f4 Named after Henry Bird, (1830 – 1908) a lover of eccentric openings. 1…g6 2.Nf3 Bg7 3.e3 c5 4.Be2 Nc6 5.0–0 Nf6 6.Qe1 The usual way to get the queen active. 6…0–0 7.d3 d5 8.Nbd2 Qc7 9.Qh4 b6 10.e4 Early pressure in the centre is the key. 10…dxe4 11.dxe4 Bb7 12.e5 Nd5 13.Ne4 Nd4 14.Bd1 Ba6 15.Re1 Rad8 16.c3 Nxf3+ 17.Bxf3 Bd3 18.e6! f5 If 18…fxe6 19.Ng5 Threatening to mate and fork 4 major pieces. 19.Ng5 is played anyway. 19…Nf6 20.Be3 Ba6 21.Nf7 Rb8 22.Bf2 Bd3 23.Re3 Be4 24.Rd1 Qc6 25.Bxe4 fxe4 26.Qh3 Qa4 Black’s queen finds some counterplay, but all his other pieces are still at home. 27.Ra1 Qc2 28.Rf1 Qxb2 29.f5 Qxa2 30.fxg6 Rxf7 31.exf7+ Kf8 32.Bg3 Rd8 33.Bc7 Black’s rook must stay on the back rank and there is only one available square. 33…Ra8 and finally a sacrificial coup de grace 34.Rxf6 Bxf6 35.Qxh7 Black has a bravado check but mate on g8 is unavoidable. 1–0

In last week’s position, White could ignore the mating threat as he had 1.RXB+ KxR 2.Qd8+ forcing Kf7 and 3.Bd4 is mate.

In this position from a game in 1972, how did White benefit from his superior development?

White to move

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