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Inter-County Q-Final Results

Saturday was the day for several Quarter-Finals to be played involving westcountry teams.

Here is the first report to hand, with Somerset snatching victory from the jaws of defeat with just seconds of the playing time left. Report kindly sent in by Jack Rudd.

Somerset managed to beat Yorkshire in a thrilling match yesterday; it all came down to a final game where the Yorkshire player, needing only a draw with K+N+2P v K+N, managed to lose on time just a couple of moves before he could deliver checkmate. This led to the match’s finishing 8-8 and Somerset going through on board-count; our opponents in the semi-final will be Middlesex.

I don’t yet have access to the full scoresheet, but wins for the team were achieved by David Buckley, Rhys Cumming, Dave Littlejohns (the aforementioned crazy game), Peter Chaplin and Nikita Ayvazyan, and draws by Matthew Turner, Jack Rudd, James Sherwin, Nils Grotnes, Terry Stuttard and Mike Richardt.

Meanwhile, Devon, who had entered the Under-180 section of the National Finals, were playing Surrey at Stratford-sub-Castle, near Salisbury. The castle in question is the prehistoric hill fort of Old Sarum, which was abandoned in mediaeval times as Salisbury became the main town of the area, though its brooding presence still dominates  the area.

Like Somerset’s match, this one was also a close encounter, though a losing one. Brian Hewson’s report explains …

Despite outgrading Surrey by 5 points per board and at one stage 5-1 up, Devon lost 7½-8½ in the U180 Qtr Final. This defeat was partly self-inflicted as, at the delayed start (by 10 minutes), we still had 7 players missing. This has a negative impact on morale for those who are there on time and in particular affects my game, as I am in and out phoning players rather than concentrating on my own game. 

Mark Abbott turned up 15 minutes in. John Stephens thought it was a 2.30 pm start despite my letter saying “please be there by 1.15pm” and was 40 mins late. The other 5 were in a people carrier driven by Steve Homer – they got delayed as Dave Regis had to drive from Exeter to Exmouth to pick up Meyrick Shaw whose car did not start, but they still stopped for lunch and turned up 40 minutes late! Clearly this had a big impact as John Stephens, Dave Regis, Charles Keen and Meyrick Shaw all lost from decent positions as time pressure took hold. 

Despite all this disruption David Toms (one of the 5) started proceedings well by mating his opponent in 8 moves! Then Brian Gosling won well, Mike Stinton-Brownbridge had a fortunate win, draws from myself and Trefor Thynne and later a good win from Mark Abbott gave us a great start. Alan Brusey drew later, although John Wheeler lost after being over-ambitious in the opening, perhaps affected by his bad back. Paul Brooks and Andrew Kinder (last to finish) lost from reasonable positions. Steve Homer won a very well played game despite starting late. Bill Ingham (second last to finish) won on time but was winning the ending. So the fact is just a couple of draws out of the 7 losses and we would have won. 

I had 20 players decline the invitation to play in this match but we still put out a good team.

Bd Devon U-180 Grd     Surrey U-180 Grd
1 Steve Homer 179 1 0 Philip Stimpson 175
2 Brian Hewson 178 ½ ½ Geoff Marchant 174
3 John Wheeler 173 0 1 Alan Punnett 179
4 John Stephens 173 0 1 Julien Shepley 177
5 Dr. Dave Regis 175 0 1 Angus French 177
6 Mark Abbott 170 1 0 Owen Phillips 170
7 Alan Brusey 174 ½ ½ Angus James 164
8 Trefor Thynne 171 ½ ½ Nicholas Grey 164
9 Meyrick Shaw u/g 0 1 David Sedgwick 168
10 Bill Ingham 166 1 0 Francis Fields 158
11 Andrew Kinder 162 0 1 Albert Yiamakis 155
12 Paul Brooks 160 0 1 Chris Clegg 155
13 Charles Keen 155 0 1 Peter Horlock 150
14 Brian Gosling 150 1 0 Ian Deswarte 144
15 Dr. David Toms 153 1 0 Marek Turowski 141
16 Mike Stinton 150 1 0 David Charters 121

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