Devon’s team Blitz competition was held at the Newton Abbot club on Sunday with twelve teams of 4 taking part, continuing the growing interest in this tournament. In addition to the main trophy, the cup originally donated by A. R. B. Thomas, a teacher at Blundell’s School, Tiverton, a new prize for the lower-graded teams was introduced, in order to give them something to play for. After six hard-fought rounds, the winners of the Thomas Cup by a wide margin were Tiverton ‘A’ with 19½/24 points, followed by Exeter (16½) and Newton Abbot ‘A’ (16). The new Graded trophy was won by Exmouth ‘C’ on 10 points followed by Torquay Boys’ G.S. ‘B’ (9½). Full details and pictures may be found on keverelchess.com.
With games played at the rate of 12 minutes per player there was no time for anyone to write down their moves, so here is a game played by Thomas in the West of England Championship in 1974, notes from the event bulletin by Dr. Jim Aitken, former Scottish and WECU Champion.
White: A. R. B. Thomas. Black: Leon Burnett.
Pirc Defence [B08]
1.e4 g6 2.d4 Bg7 3.Nf3 c6 4.Be2 d6 5.0–0 Nf6 6.Nc3 0–0 7.h3 Qc7 8.Be3 h6 9.Qd2 Kh7 10.Nh2 d5 Black has played the opening in restrained vein – possibly too much so. He now feels the need for a central strongpoint as a counter to White’s intentions of a King-side pawn advance. 11.exd5 Nxd5 12.Nxd5 cxd5 13.Ng4 Bxg4 This has the drawback of opening the h-file of which White makes excellent use, but it is doubtful if there is anything better. 14.hxg4 Nd7 15.g3 Nf6 16.Bf3 Rac8 17.c3 Qd7 18.g5 hxg5 19.Bxg5 Rh8 20.Kg2 Kg8 21.Rh1 Qf5 22.Rxh8+ Bxh8 23.Re1 Qd7 24.Qf4 Rd8 25.Qh4 Bg7 26.Rh1 Qf5 27.g4 Qc2 28.Bh6 Bh8? White has developed a mating attack remarkably quickly and after this move Black is lost. g5 gave a last chance of escape at the cost of a pawn. 29.Bf8 Kxf8 30.Qxh8+ Ng8 31.Rh7 1-0 Rg7 cannot be avoided. A neat conclusion by Thomas.
The 12th Seniors Congress in Exmouth starts in just over three weeks and entries are starting to come in more quickly, so those intending to enter should ensure they get a place before the cut-off by sending in their entry form as soon as possible. There’s a “junior” section for the 50-somethings, while the 60+s are the true seniors.
The solution to last week’s problem by John Brown of Bridport was 1.Ne6! and if 1…Kxg6 2. Be4# or 1…Nd8 2.Rxg5# or 1…Bxg6 2.Ng6#.
This week’s position is taken from a game between two lady players earlier this year. What was White’s killing move?