In November 1688, William of Orange and his army of 30,000 men and horse set sail from the Dutch port of Hellevoetsluis bound for the northeast coast of England. However, autumnal gales blew the fleet westward and they landed unexpectedly at Brixham, from where the invited invaders marched on London to depose the highly-unpopular James II. That geographical connection was further cemented in 1988 when Torbay twinned with Hellevoetsluis, and one of the strongest links since then has involved the Hellevoetsluis Chess Club whose members regularly visit Torbay and play various clubs in the area. The latest visit was last weekend when their team of 4 played Exmouth on Saturday (lost 4-0), then came 3rd in a six team rapidplay tournament at Newton Abbot and on Monday played a match against Teignmouth (drawn 2-2) at Forde House, the same building where the future King William III spent his 2nd night on English soil.
There have been a number of Scottish winners of the British Championship, including Robert Combe and Jonathan Rowson. On the other hand, the number of English players who have won the Scottish Championship is rather less, because of the eligibility rules. However, the Cornishman, Andrew Greet, overcame this as he has been living and working in Glasgow for the past two years, and in coming 1st in their 117th Championship last weekend, he is the new Scottish Champion. The key game came in the last round when he was paired against the confusingly-named Andrew Green, a game that Greet won.
Here is a miniature from the Saturday match.
White: Bonne Faber. Black: Brian Hewson.
Scandinavian Defence [B01]
1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Qxd5 3.Nc3 Qd6 4.d4 a6 5.Be3 Nf6 6.Nf3 b5 7.Bd3 Bb7 8.Qd2 e6 9.0–0–0 it was brave to castle long where Black’s pawns are already advanced. 9…Nbd7 10.h3 Rd8 11.Rhg1 Be7 Black is not tempted to exchange bishop for knight as it would open lines to Black’s kingside. 12.Be2 0–0 13.Bf4?! Qb6 14.g4 each side is poised to attack, but Black’s is the more potent. 14…b4 15.Na4 Qa5 16.b3 Bc6 resigned, in view of 17.Nb2 (or 17.Nc5 Nxc5 and White cannot re-take without losing his queen). 17…Qxa2 18.c4 bxc3 19.Qxc3 Ba3 20.Ng5 Rb8 and Black’s threats cannot all be met.
The solution to last week’s problem by Sam Loyd was 1Qa5!, a waiting move that threatens nothing in itself, but whichever rook or bishop moves a mating move will arise.
This 2-mover of 1914 was by Godfrey Heathcote (1870-1952), one of Britain’s finest composers.