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Philidor’s Sad Demise – (21.10.2017.) 956

The greatest player of the 18th Century was Francois-André Danican Philidor (1726-1795). A child prodigy in both music composition and chess, he became a familiar figure in court circles, which after the French Revolution did him no favours, and after one of his annual visits to London to play matches against wealthy patrons, in 1793 it was felt too dangerous for him to return to his wife and children, as his name was on a hit-list of dangerous “émigrés”. So he was left marooned in London, taking residence at 10, Ryder Street, Piccadilly. Parted from his family he was physically and emotionally broken. He fell ill and died there, and was buried on 3rd September 1795 in one of the new cemeteries on the edge of the city, adjacent to where the first Euston Station would be built in 1837.

His contemporaries found his skills at simultaneous and blindfold play quite incredible, and his book, L’Analyze des Échecs went into 100+ editions worldwide and influenced chess theory for generations, not being fully appreciated until the 20th century.

If his lonely end was not sad enough, more was to come, when in 1849, Euston station was extended with platforms 9 & 10 added by taking over part of Philidor’s cemetery. Some of the headstones were laid out as paving stones but what happened to the disinterred coffins, including Philidor’s, is not known.

Members of the Staunton Society, Chairman Barry Martin and Ray Keene, having got Howard Staunton’s neglected grave renovated in Kensall Green cemetery and a blue plaque erected, lobbied English Heritage to get a plaque for Philidor placed in Ryder Street. They declined saying that “he was not famous enough”.

Here is a game of his, played at odds in London in 1789 against one of his regular opponents, J. Wilson. Philidor is White and is without his QN, while Wilson gives up his f7 pawn.

1.e4 Nh6 2.d4 Nf7 Philidor follows his normal plan of occupying the centre with pawns and developing pieces in support. 3.f4 e6 4.Bd3 c5 5.c3 cxd4 6.cxd4 Nc6 7.Nf3 Bb4+ Annoying, as White is without his knight to block the check 8.Ke2 Qc7 9.a3 Be7 10.Be3 d6 11.b4 Bd7 12.Rc1 Qd8 Black is already finding it difficult to find good squares for his pieces. 13.h3 Rc8 14.g4 Nb8 15.Qd2 Rxc1 16.Rxc1 d5 17.e5 a6 18.f5 h6 19.fxe6 Bxe6 20.Bf5 Bxf5 21.gxf5 Bg5 22.e6 Bxe3 23.exf7+ Kxf7 24.Qxe3 Re8 25.Ne5+ Kg8 26.Qf4 Qf6 27.Kf3 Rf8? 28.Ng6! Re8 29.Qe5! Qxe5? 30.dxe5 The exchange of queens works in White’s favour as it unites his forward pawns. Nc6 31.Kf4 Kf7 32.Rd1 d4 33.h4 Rd8 34.Ke4 b5 35.h5 a5 Desperation – he has little else to do. 36.Rc1 d3 This brings us to this week’s diagrammed position. Black has a freely advancing pawn backed by a rook, so will our hero have time to take the undefended knight? What will he do?

In last week’s position, White could play 1.Qe1! which threatens to both capture the knight and to “skewer” Black’s queen and rook.

Can Philidor afford to risk taking Black's knight?

Current Entries In the Royal Beacon Seniors Congress 20.10.17.

Announcement:

Robert Everson has been one of our most regular competitiors in the Seniors Congress from the start, one of significant contingent coming each year from Kent.

This year, he was, as usual, one of the 1st entries in, but then I was told he was ill, and a little later, that he would be too ill to play. Now I’m told he has been diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour, and has been hospitalised.

I’m sure all our thoughts go to him and his family & friends.

I don’t know if he’s able to receive messages or e-mails, but his address is bobeversonq@gmail.com.

Beacon Seniors’ Congress 2017

Royal Beacon Hotel – Exmouth

Mon. 6th – Fri. 10th Nov.

Entries so far

Date: 20th Oct.

17 days to go

Seniors 65+

1 202 Stephen Berry Wimbledon
2 194 Ken Norman Wokingham
3 181 Ivan Myall Chelmsford
4 180 Norman Hutchinson Cambridge
5 172 Robert Everson    ill Dartford
6 169 Adrian Pickersgill Hastings
7 163 Bill Ingham Teignmouth
8 162 Ian McAllan Sidcup
9 161 Brian Valentine Leighton B.
10 159 Brian Gosling E. Budleigh
11 154 Andrew Price Leamington
12 153 Raymond Gamble Derby
13 152 David Openshaw Cavendish
14 152 Arthur Hibbitt Banbury
15 150 Martin Page Insurance
16 147 Mike Wiltshire Kent
17 142 Ivor Annetts Tiverton
18 138 Paul Foster Medway
19 136 Malcolm Roberts Holmes Chapel
20 133 Dinah Norman Wokingham
21 132 Ray Kearsley Wimbledon
22 131 Michael Cresswell Barking
23 131 Gerald Naldrett Gerrards Cross
24 130 Peter Lucas Sussex
25 130 Robert Hurn Caerphilly
26 129 Alan Sherriff Bexley
27 129 Stan Lovell BCA
28 128 William Harris Sidmouth
29 128 Robert Jones Exmouth
30 123 Paul Errington Bournemouth
31 123 Ray Hunt Seaton
32 119 Roger Waters BCA
33 119 Philip Gordon BCA
34 119 Malcolm Belt Exmouth
35 117 Omer Namouk Hastings
36 112 David Burt Bournemouth
37 102 Sid Jones Dorchester
38 96 Peter Carrick Bath
39 93 Hazel Welch Seaton
40 91 Marian Cox Southampton
41 81 Reg Cox Southampton

“Juniors”  50 – 64

1 197 Graham Bolt Exeter
2 191 Mike Waddington Dorchester
3 188 Steve Dilleigh Bristol
4 188 Jonathan Wells Norwich
5 185 Ian Heppell Wimbledon
6 173 Alan Brown Northampton
7 169 Tim Spanton Hastings
8 167 Ronnie Burton Weymouth
9 163 Robert Stern Pimlico
10 161 Steve Dean Seaton
11 157 Phil Kennedy Cornwall
12 155 Colin Sellwood Camborne
13 152 Nigel Livesey Manchester
14 146 Jamie Morgan Cornwall
15 132 Ian Blencowe Gloucester
16 130 Paul Jackson Bournemouth
17 120 Susan Selley Exmouth
18 116 Graham Hillman Wimbourne
19 96 William Taplin Keynsham

Name in Yellow

= Most recent entry

Success For Torquay Schoolboys (14.10.2017.) 955

Last weekend saw an International Schools Team Tournament at Millfield School, Somerset, in which the Devon representative was Torquay Boys’ Grammar School. The format involved all schools playing 2 preliminary rounds, on the basis of which teams were allocated to the Championship or Major Section for the 5 subsequent rounds.

Having lost their older and more experienced players to tertiary education, Torquay had a younger team than usual and just failed to qualify for the top section, but were well-placed in the Major. Their team comprised the following players, with their final scores out of 7.

Bd. 1: Vignesh Ramesh (3). 2. Ben Sturt (3½). 3. Jakub Kubiac (3½). 4. Ben Sanders-Watt (3½). 5. Luke Glasson (6½). 6. Isaac Kennedy-Bruyneels (6). 7. Toby O’Donoghue (3½). 8.Oliver Mortimer (2½). 9. Evan McMullan (5½). 10 Kiernan Raine (6). 11. James Gibbs (4½) & 12. Surinder Virdee (5½).

Luke, Isaac, Evan, Kieran and Surinder all won prizes for the Best Board performance.

The final school positions in the Major were as follows: 1st TBGS. 2nd Chepstow School. 3rd St. Benildus College, Dublin. 4th St. Andrews College, Dublin. 5th Colaiste Eanna (Dublin ‘A’). 6th Colaiste Eanna (Dublin) ‘B’.

The Championship Section finished as follows: 1st Gonzaga College (Dublin) ‘A’. 2nd Royal GS. Guildford. 3rd Millfield. 4th Winchester. 5th Q.E. School, Barnet & Gonzaga College ‘B’.

The very strong Isle of Man tournament ended a few days ago, with a victory for World Champion, Carlsen. The draw for Rd. 1 was done randomly, which was lucky for some, like Carlsen and Adams who were drawn against much weaker opponents, while the much closer seeds, Caruana and Kramnik were paired together. Here is Adams’ first game.

White: M. Adams (2738). Black:  V. Bianco (2086).

Caro-Kann – Arkell-Khenkin Variation [B12]

1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.e5 c5 The Arkell-Khenkin Variation, pioneered by our local player and Russian ex-pat Igor Khenkin. Although a 2nd move by the same piece in the opening would seem to be bad, both had successes with it and pioneered its use. 4.Nf3 cxd4 5.Nxd4 Nc6 6.Nxc6 bxc6 7.Bd3 Ba6 8.e6 fxe6 9.0–0 Bxd3 10.cxd3 g6 11.Bf4 Bg7 12.Qe2 Nf6 13.Nd2 Nh5 14.Be5 0–0 15.Nf3 Bxe5 16.Nxe5 An excellent outpost for the knight. 16…c5 17.g3 Qd6 18.Rac1 Rac8 19.Rfe1 Ng7 20.h4 Rf5 21.b4 Rc7 22.bxc5 Rxc5 23.d4 Rc7 24.Qd2 Rf8 25.Rxc7 Qxc7 26.Rc1 Qb7 27.g4 Ne8 28.Qe3 Nc7 29.h5 Kg7 30.hxg6 hxg6 31.Nd7 Rc8 Completing the desertion of their king by Black’s pieces. 32.Qg5 Threatening e5 and e7. 0–1 Analysis shows that 1…Rf8, although losing the rook is the only move to avoid a quicker forced mate. 1–0

In last week’s position played out in Manchester in 1929, after 1.RxB QxR there followed 2.Ng5 threatening both the queen and Rxh7 mate, so 2…Qg6 is forced, but White continues with 3.RxP+ QxR and 4.Nf7+ is what is called a smothered mate – probably the move that Black overlooked when he originally accepted the “gift”.

In this position White has a move that wins significant material.

White to play

S. Devon Chess Festival Details (07.10.2017.) 954

The South Devon Chess Festival starts in exactly one month’s time when the 18th Royal Beacon Seniors Congress starts on Monday 6th November at Exmouth. This will consist of a game a day throughout the week, finishing on Friday afternoon and giving everyone who wishes to partake in both just enough time to get down to the Livermore House Hotel, Torquay, where the 51st Torbay Congress will start at 7 p.m. that evening. This will provide players with 10 games in 7 days. For more details about the Seniors event, contact the Organiser by e-mail at jones_r53@sky.com, and for the Torbay Congress contact Phil McConnell on secretary@torbaycongress.com. Downloadable entry forms for both events may be found on several local websites including chessdevon.org.

In last year’s Seniors event, Andrew Footner mistook the start time of Rd. 1 and was defaulted, which meant he had to pull out all the stops in his remaining games, which he did winning all 4 and coming 2nd=.

White: M. Dow. Black: A. F. Footner.

Scandinavian Defence [B01]

1.e4 d5 Signature move of the Scandinavian Defence, immediately asking a question of White. 2.exd5 the most usual answer. Black now has to choose whether to retake immediately, the Main Line, in which case his queen will be attacked, or to leave it for the time being and build up an attack against it.  2…Nf6 3.d4 Bg4 4.Be2 Bxe2 5.Qxe2 Qxd5 6.Nf3 Nc6 7.c3 0–0–0 8.Be3 e5 9.dxe5 Nxe5 10.0–0 Bd6 11.Nbd2 Rhe8 12.Rfd1 Nd3 13.Nf1 Bf8 14.Qc2 a6 15.Bd4 c5 16.Bxf6 gxf6 17.Ne3 Qe4 18.Rd2 Bh6 19.Ne1 Nxf2! Black wins a pawn as Whte’s knight is triple attacked. 20.Rxd8+ Rxd8 21.Qxe4 Nxe4 22.Nf5 Bf4 23.Nf3 Ng5 24.N5h4 Rd6 25.Re1 Re6 Black is trying very hard to get his f-pawns undoubled. 26.Kf1 Kc7 27.Re2 Rxe2 28.Kxe2 Kd6 Black’s king now sets off on an 11 move odyssey. 29.c4 Ke6 30.Kd3 h5 31.b3 Nxf3 32.Nxf3 Kf5 33.h3 Be5 34.Ng1 Bb2 35.Nf3 Kf4 36.Ke2 Kg3 37.Kf1 f5 38.Ng1 Be5 39.Ne2+ Kh2 40.Kf2 f4 41.Kf3 h4 42.Nc1 Kg1 43.Nd3 Bd6 44.Nc1 If White tried to win a pawn with 44.Nxf4 there follows 44…Bxf4 45.Kxf4 Kxg2 46.Kg4 f5+ 47.Kxf5 Kxh3 and the h-pawn will queen, so the knight is reduced to impassivity. 44…Kf1 45.Nd3 f6 46.Nc1 Ke1 47.Nd3+ Kd2 48.Nb2 Kc2 49.Na4 b5 50.cxb5 axb5 51.Nb6 Kb2 0–1 White resigned, fearing his pawns would be gobbled up, but the position was perhaps less clear than that. e.g. 52.a4 Kxb3 53.axb5 c4 threatening to break away. 54.Nxc4 Kxc4 55.Kg4 Kd5 As the bishop covers the b8 queening square, the king needs to come across asap. 56.Kxh4 Ke5 57.b6 Kf5 58.Kh5 Ke4 59.Kh4 and it’s still unclear.

In last week’s position, Mrs. Hogg played 1.f7+ forcing 1…Rxf7 and allowing 2.Rh8 mate.

In this position from a game c. 100 years ago, in an attempt to break through Black’s well set up defences, White offered the sacrifice of the exchange with 1.RxB, an offer Black considered and then accepted. Was he wise to do so?

Paignton Pics #1

Here are some scenes from the last day of the Congress…

Final Rd: Keith Arkell in action against Ashley Stewart, with David Gostelow taking Black against Steve Dilleigh next to them.

Final Rd: John Fraser vs Mike Waddington & Bates vs Goater. At one stage Fraser seemed to have his opponent completely tied up with all 3 kingside pieces unable to move, but Waddington eventually broke free and had 2 vs 2 pawns in which his proved the greater menace.

In the Challengers, Roger Hutchings failed to show up for his Bd. 1 game, so lost the chance to add another £300 to that won the day before in the Morning event. Here Chris Lowe plays Paul Jackson. and Trefor Thynne can be seen in action against Rossiter, while next to him is Bill Ingham playing Robert Stern.

Paignton Congress 2017 – Complete Prizelist

Here is the final prizelist of this year’s event, which totals nearly £4,500. The 0/2 prize is also called the Slow Starter prize, which was introduced to encourage those who have started the event disastrously, and to whom the prospect of an early return home might be coming increasingly attractive. It gives them something still to play for, instead of messing up the draw by withdrawing.

Arkell’s short Rd. 3 draw against his nearest rival, Richard Bates was, perhaps, predictable, but to be be fair he’d made 172 moves in his previous 2 games and, in any case, he was feeling (and looking) quite tired after a long series of back-to-back tournaments, taking in Dundee, Cardiff and Qatar, to name but three. And who wouldn’t.

Congratulations to all these winners.

Paignton  Congress  –  3rd – 9th September 2017
PRIZELIST
Premier
1st= Keith Arkell 2415 Halesowen £350
Richard Bates 2387 Hackney £350
3rd Mike Waddington 2080 Dorchester £200
4th= David Anderton 2093 Walsall Kipping 4 £33
Kevin Goater 2102 Weymouth 4 £33
Ashley Stewart 2127 Royston 4 £33
GP John Fraser 1870 Exeter University 4 £50
0/2 Ivan Myall 2000 Chelmsford 3 £20
Challengers (U-180)
1st Kevin Simpson 152 Mansfield 6 £300
2nd= Chris Lowe 176 Exeter 5 £75
Robert Stern 163 Albany 5 £75
Paul Jackson 162 Coulsdon 5 £75
Alex Rossiter 161 Bristol Cabot 5 £75
GP Yasser Tello 162 Wimbledon 4 £20
U-163 Colin Sellwood 155 Camborne 4 £20
U-154 Martin Page 152 Insurance £20
Jim Robertson 129 East Kilbride £20
0/2 Tim Spanton 169 Hastings £20
Intermediate (U-150)
1st Ivor Annetts 144 Tiverton £300
2nd= Terry Greenaway 141 Torquay 5 £150
Geoff Harrison 133 Gosforth 5 £150
GP Paul Doherty 126 Bolton 4 £10
U-132 Jeremy Brooks 121 Hampstead 4 £10
Gerald Parfett 119 Athenaeum 4 £10
0/2 Mark Stone 121 Pettswood 3 £20
Minor (U-120)
1st= Tim Allen 112 Battersea £250
Paul Errington 119 Bournemouth £250
3rd= Alan Davies 92 South Hams 5 £50
Tim Crouch 116 King’s Head 5 £50
GP Caroline Robson 105 Barnet 4 £30
GP George Phillips 96 B.C.A. 4 £15
U-98 Peter Carrick 96 Mid-Norton 4 £15
0/2 Reg Cox 84 Southampton 3 £10
Philip Gordon 119 B.C.A. 3 £10
5 Rd. Morning Sections
Boniface (U-180)
1st Roger Hutchings 174 Woodpushers £300
2nd= Richard Webster 175 Calderdale 4 £75
Clive Walley 164 Bath 4 £75
Alex Rossiter 161 Bristol Cabot 4 £75
Brian Gosling 154 East Budleigh 4 £75
GP Russell Goodfellow 159 Tunbridge Wells 3 £7.50
U-162 Alan Brusey 158 Newton Abbot 3 £7.50
Raymond Gamble 153 Derby 3 £7.50
Martin Keeve 161 Dresden 3 £7.50
U-146 John Shaddick 136 Basingstoke 3 £30
Thynne (U-135)
1st Paul Doherty 126 Bolton £300
2nd Tim Crouch 116 Kings Head 4 £200
3rd= David McGeeney 134 Bristol Cabot £33
Joseph Farrell 130 Metropolitan £33
Norbert Simmon 132 München £33
GP Stevo Ilic 101 Cowley £6
U-119 Clifford Peach 106 S. Hams £6
Barry Miles 115 Coulsdon £6
Graham Mill-Wilson 104 Plymouth £6
Susan Fraser 111 Darlington £6
0/2 Ken Ashby 97 S. Hams 2 £20
Richard Nash Blitz
1st John Fraser 5 £25
2nd Keith Arkell 4 £15
3rd= John Mercy 3 £2.50
David Costelow 3 £2.50
Kevin Goater 3 £2.50
Nigel Dennis 3 £2.50
Total prize money £4,458

Paignton Congress Rds. 3 & 4

Norman Tidy makes a move against Congress Organiser for many years, Alan Crickmore.

Rd. 4: Hazel Welch and Christine Constable both in deep thought.

Roger Waters (W) takes on Tony Tatam, who's enjoying the opportunity to swap the role of arbiter for that of player for a change.

Paignton Congress Hits The Road Again (06.09.2017.)

The venerable Paignton Congress got off to another start, but this time amid foul weather; a howling gale sweeping in from over Tor Bay bringing drenching rain – not your typical start to Paignton, it has to be said. It’s usually a fine week weatherwise, with the hotel gounds full of players soaking up the last rays of summer sun,  earnestly analysing or just chatting with friends. There won’t be much of that this week, but fortunately the hotel has room and facilities enough to cope with that.

The entry lists have a familiar look about them; players know what they like and come back year after year, but with a liberal enough sprinkling of  newcomers to maintain interest. Keith Arkell’s here, of course, defending his impressive 25 year record; familiar ground for him as he only lives down the road, and quite a change from his having just become the World’s Bughouse Chess Champion in Dubai, with his Bughouse partner and fellow Devonian, Jack Rudd. That must be some kind of record. If you don’t know what Bughouse Chess is, don’t ask – I’ll come back to it later.

Keith has Richard Bates as his nearest rival, who may be taking heart from the struggles Arkell has had in his early games. In round 1 his game lasted 102 moves and nearly filled 2 complete scoresheets, while his next game took a mere 70 moves to wear down Graham Bolt. On the other hand, these marathons seem to be meat & drink to him; he’s content to sit at the board, motionless and fully focussed for hour after hour, and that’s an important quality in a top player – they all have it. No fidgets, fussing, watching other games – just the occasional break to get a breath of fresh air to clear his head, then back to the board.

DCCA President, Paul Brooks, welcomes everyone before Rd. 1 begins.

Arkell & Daniel Rosen get their 102 move marathon under way. Next to Arkell is David Anderton, making a rare appearance at the event.

Rd. 2 and another mini-marathon ensues, this time involving Graham Bolt.

Arthur Hibbert vs former Paigntonian Chris Lowe on top board of the Challengers.

General view of the playing area #1

General view from a different angle at the same moment.

What Is It About Carnon Downs? (02.09.2017.) 949

Carnon Downs (pop. 1300) is a small but growing community situated on the A39 between Truro and Falmouth. Its recent development has included the construction of a fine village hall in which a number of societies meet, including a chess club. One might assume that this would be a somewhat parochial affair, attracting just a few villagers, but in fact, the club is named Carrick, after Carrick Roads, the name given to the estuary of the River Fal, which reaches from Falmouth up to Truro, and was formed 2 years ago from members of the old Falmouth and Truro clubs which were both ailing and have since closed down. It’s proved an inspired move, as last season they became Cornwall’s club champions by winning the County Cup, in which their 1st team, Carrick ‘A’, beat their 5 opponents home and away, Newquay, Liskeard, Camborne, Penwith and Carrick ‘B’. Even their 2nd team won most of their home matches and finished in a respectable position.

Carrick have strength in depth, with a pool of 7 players comprising Jeremy Menadue (191); Mark Hassall (168); Robin Kneebone (164); Richard Stephens (160); Adam Hussain (145); Marcus Pilling (145) and Mick Hill (139). These grades are the most recent published and 11 yr old Hussain’s meteoric rise through the lists bodes well for the club’s prospects this season.

Much information about Carrick and all Cornish clubs and competitions may be found on Ian George’s excellent website, cornwallchess.org.uk.

Here is a game from last year’s WECU Jamboree, won by a Carrick player.

White: M. Hassall. Black: Steve Homer

Sicilian Defence – Najdorf Variation.

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Bg5 Nbd7 7.f4 In keeping with White’s thematic plan against the Sicilian of an early kingside attack. 7…e5 8.Nf3 Qa5 To counter White’s Plan A, Black generally seeks to counter on the opposite wing. 9.Qd2 h6 10.Bxf6 Nxf6 11.Bc4 Be7 If 11…Qb4? there follows 12.fxe5 Qxc4 13.exf6 gxf6 14.Nd5 and if 14…Qxe4+ 15.Kd1 and with no other developed pieces, Black has to try and counter the threats of Re1 winning the queen & Nc7+ winning a rook. If 15…Qc4 16.Nb6 wins the rook anyway. 12.0–0–0 0–0 13.Kb1 a sensible precaution before launching into anything rash. 13…Qc5 From now on, tempo is everything. 14.Bb3 b5? 15.Nd5 Bd8 16.Rhe1 exf4 17.Qxf4 Nd7 18.Nd4 Bg5 19.Qg3 Ne5 20.h4 Bd8 21.Nf5 Bxf5 22.exf5 Kh7 23.Rf1 Ra7 24.f6 g6 25.h5 Rg8 26.Qh3 g5 27.Qf5+ Kh8 28.c3 opening the white diagonal to press home the attack. 28…a5 29.Bc2 Ng6 30.hxg6 Rxg6 31.Qh3 1-0. Black must lose a second piece.

In last week’s 2-mover 1.RxQ+ looked attractive, but after 1…PxR there was no mate, so it fails the test. The more subtle 1.Bb2 is the key, for any Black move is answered by 2.Nc6 mate.

This week’s position looks fairly innocuous, with level material and chances seemingly about even, yet GM John Nunn (W) found a killer move that won immediately.

White to move and win.

Jones Regains Title (12.08.2017.) 946

At the start of the final round of the British Championship on Sunday, there were no less than 7 players with a chance of reaching the 7 points that could involve them in the almost inevitable play-off. In the event 4 players managed it, namely Gawain Jones, Luke McShane, John Emms & Craig Hanley, which made the play-off easier to organise. In the semi-final Jones beat Howell and MacShane beat Hanley. In the subsequent final, played using the controversial Armageddon tie-break rules, it was Jones that kept his nerve and wits to wear down McShane and take the title for the first time since 2012.

Jovanka Houska became British Ladies Champion for the 6th time. Other prizewinners were as follows: U-21 1st= Ravia Haria (Wood Green) & Andrew Horton (3Cs). 50+: 1st John Emms (Wood Green).

Some of the winners from the other sections were as follows: Seniors 50+: 1st John Nunn. 65+: 1st= Stephen Berry (Wimbledon) & Roger Emerson (Guildford). U-180: 1st O. Chinguun. U-160: 1st= G. Brown & O. Chinguun. U-140: R. Clegg (Huddersfield). U-120: 1st C. Fraser W. Bridgford). U-100: 1st Y. Kumar (Bath. U-16: 1st= K. Kalavannan (Surbiton). U-14: 1st V. Stoyanov (Sandhurst). U-12: 1st C. Tombolis (Richmond). U-11: Y. Han. U-10: A. Chung. U-9: 1st= J. Birks & G. Clarkson. U-8: 1st= S. Verma & S. Lohia.

Here is the new champion’s game from Rd. 3.

White: IM Richard Palliser (2408). Black: GM Gawain Jones (2660).

Ruy Lopez -  Steinitz Defence [C75]

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 One of the more conventional openings from the 450+ played in the Championship. Players of this strength should know it well. 3…a6 4.Ba4 d6 The Steinitz Defence Deferred, the theme of which is for Black to wait to see how White deploys his pieces before deciding on his own plan.  5.c3 5…Bd7 6.0–0 g6 7.d4 Bg7 8.Bg5 f6 9.Be3 Nh6 10.dxe5 dxe5 The opened d-file becomes a big factor later in the game. 11.Qd5 Qe7 12.Na3 0–0–0 13.Qd2 Ng4 Bringing the knight into play, attacking a bishop that doesn’t have a move on the board. 14.Qe2 Nxe3 15.Qxe3 f5 16.exf5 gxf5 Generally, pawns should take towards the centre, and this has the additional advantage of opening lines to White’s king. 17.Rad1 Kb8 18.Rd5 e4 19.Bxc6 Bxc6 20.Rxf5 Rd3 21.Qg5 Qd7 22.Nd4 Bxd4 23.cxd4 Rxd4 24.Rc5? Surely it was time to bring the knight in from the cold with 24.Nc2. 24…e3 Offering a pawn in order to open up further lines to White’s king. 25.Qxe3 Rg8 grabbing more space on the k-side. 26.g3 Rd1 27.f3 Re8 28.Re5 Rxf1+ 29.Kxf1 Qd1+ 30.Kg2 Rxe5! setting up a neat combination. 31.Qxe5 Qxf3+ 32.Kh3 Bd7+ 33.Kh4 Qg4# 0–1

In last week’s position, it was White’s bishops that do the damage. 1.QxP+! forces 1…PXQ then 2.Bg6 mate.

Here is a championship-level 2-mover by Comins Mansfield that first appeared in this paper 80 years ago.

White to play & mate in 2