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Devon vs Gloucestershire – The Result. (27.01.2018.)

The West of England Chess Union covers an area from Penzance c. 230 miles east to Portsmouth and c. 230 miles north-east to Tewkesbury, and because of the return mileages involved in an inter-county match it takes a good captain to get out a maximum strength team. For example, in their recent match against Cornwall held near Exeter, Gloucestershire arrived 4 players short for a 16 board match and lost 12-4.

On Saturday they were 2 players short for their match against Devon at Chedzoy Village Hall near Bridgwater, and although their top 8 boards did score 5-3, this was offset by losing 1-7 in the lower half, giving Devon a 10-6 win.

Devon names 1st in each pairing:-

1.D. Mackle (198) 0-1 J. Stewart (199). 2.J. Underwood (192) 1-0 M. Ashworth (192). 3.J. Stephens (189) 1-0 C. Mattos (190). 4.P. O’Neill (188) 0-1 J. Jenkins (185). 5.J. Wheeler (185) 0-1 P. Meade (178. 6.B. Hewson (184) ½-½ P. Kirby (177). 7.L. Hartmann 0-1 P. Masters (175). 8.T. Paulden ½-½ N. Bond (175). 9.M. Abbott (183) 1-0 R. Ashworth (161). 10.S. Homer (181) 1-0 M. Taylor (160). 11.P. Hampton (172) 1-0 A. Richards (133). 12.C. Lowe (176) 0-1 I. Blencowe (131). 13.J. Haynes (171) 1-0 P. Bending (112). 14.T. Thynne (170) 1-0 D. Walton (109). 15.S. Martin (186) 1-0 d/f. 16.D. Regis (166) 1-0 d/f.

Here is one of Devon’s wins.

White: Robert Ashworth. Black: Mark Abbott.

Sicilian Defence – Maroczy Bind [B36]

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 g6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nc6 5.c4 The Hungarian’s plan to deter Black from playing the freeing d5, but here it’s White who becomes positionally tied up. Nf6 6.Nc3 d6 7.Be2 Nxd4 8.Qxd4 Bg7 9.f3 0–0 10.Qd3 Be6 11.Be3 Qa5 12.Rc1 Rfc8 13.b3 Nd7 14.0–0 a6 15.Bd4 Bxd4+ 16.Qxd4 Rc7 17.f4 Qb6 18.Rcd1 Qxd4+ 19.Rxd4 f6 20.Rf3 Rac8 21.Nd5 Bxd5 22.exd5 a5 23.Re3 Kf8 24.Bg4 f5 25.Bf3 Nf6 26.h3 h5 27.Kf2 h4 28.Re6 Kf7 29.Ke3 White’s rooks are disconnected, he’s running out of time and has already twice offered a draw, but Black, having denied White any opportunities for a quick king-side attack, is now set on exercising Black’s theme in the Sicilian of attacking the queenside. 29…a4 30.Kd2 b5 31.Kd3 Nd7 32.Re3 b4 33.Bd1 Nc5+ 34.Ke2 Ne4 Compare and contrast the roles of the bishop and knight. 35.Kf3 Nc3 36.Rd2 Ra8 37.Red3 Ne4 38.Rb2 Kf6 39.Rd4 Nc3 40.Bc2 a3 41.Rb1 Taking the rook may be superficially tempting but the text is better as it opens up the a-file, and in any case the knight is stronger than the rook. 41…Nxa2 42.Rd2 Nc3 43.Ra1 Rc5 44.Rd3 Rca5 45.Re3 a2 White is hamstrung. 46.Re6+ Kf7 47.Re3 Rc8 48.Re6 Nxd5 49.Bxf5 gxf5 50.cxd5 Rxd5 51.Rh6 Rd2 52.Rxh4 Rc3# 0–1

In last week’s position, Black played 1…Bd8! both attacking the queen and opening up the e-file with the threat of 2…Qe4+ 3.Kb1 and RxB mate. White can avoid this but would have to give up a rook in the process.

In this position from a recent tournament, it’s Black to play and he discovered a piece-winning move. Can you see what that was?

WECU Jamboree Results (23.09.2017.)

The West of England Jamboree took place on Sunday at the Kenn Centre, next to the A38. Five teams of 12 players took part, in a format that guarantees each team has 6 whites and 3 of their players will face one of the other 4 teams. Cornwall, Somerset and Gloucestershire entered teams, while Devon, being the home side and currently possessing plenty of chess talent, entered a 1st & 2nd team.

Most pairings were closely enough matched in strength to make their games long and well-contested.

It was, perhaps, no great surprise that Devon A came 1st with 9½/12 points, followed by Somerset (7 pts); Cornwall (5); Devon B (4½) and Gloucestershire (4). The complex results chart and some photographs may be found on keverelchess.com while games may be found on chessdevon.org.

The event was organised by Mark Hassall of the Carrick Club, and his game bore a striking resemblance to the one he played at last year’s jamboree, and printed here at the time.

White: M. Hassall (168). Black: P. O’Neill (188).

Sicilian Defence – Najdorf Var. [B99]

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Bg5 e6 7.f4 Last year his opponent played 7…e5 in order to free up his white square bishop, an idea that didn’t work. 7…Be7 Subsequent moves will vary in detail from a year ago but are very much following the same plans. 8.Qf3 Qc7 9.0–0–0 Nbd7 10.g4 b5 11.Bxf6 gxf6 12.f5 Nc5 13.a3 Rb8 14.Bh3 b4 15.axb4 Rxb4 16.g5 Qa5? A loss of tempo, in view of 17.Nc6 Qb6 If Black had pressed ahead with 17…Qa1+ there would follow 18.Kd2 Qxb2 19.Rb1 Nb3+ 20.Ke1 Qxc2 21.Nxb4 winning the queen. 18.Nxb4 Qxb4 19.fxe6 Nxe6 20.gxf6 Bf8 21.Rhg1 Qc5 22.e5 dxe5 23.Qa8 h5 24.Bxe6 fxe6 25.Ne4 Qc7 26.Nd6+ Bxd6 27.Rxd6! Qc4 1-0 and Black resigned as White has several lines ending in mate, the most direct being  28.Rc6 hitting queen and bishop.

Here is an instructive miniature from the same tournament.

White: C. J. Scott (160). Black: A. Champion (147).

Alekhine’s Defence [B03]

1.e4 Nf6 Alekhine’s Defence, in which Black tries to lure Black’s pawns forward to a point where they become unstable and can be more easily attacked, as White will by then have neglected his piece development. 2.e5 Nd5 3.d4 d6 4.f4 dxe5 5.fxe5 Nc6 6.c4 Nb6 7.Be3 Bf5 8.Nf3 e6 9.Nc3 Qd7 10.Be2 0–0–0 11.Qd2 Be7 12.0–0–0 Nb4 13.a3 Nc2 Black has succeeded in getting in behind White’s front lines 14.c5 But the White pawns press ahead anyway. 14…Nxe3 15.cxb6 Nxd1?? Black sees only the chance of going a whole rook up, but completely overlooks his defences. 16.bxa7 c5 17.a8Q+ Kc7 18.Qa5+ 1–0.

In last week’s position White won simply with 1. QxR+. If 1…KxQ 2.Rh3# or 1…Kg8 2,RxP+ etc.

Here we have a bit of Tal magic from 35 years ago, as fresh today as the day it was created. He is looking for a quick finish before White can start to exploit his

vulnerable back rank. Any ideas?

Black to play and win quickly

WECU Chess Jamboree (17.09.2017.)

The West of England Chess Union’s annual Jamboree was held on Sunday 17th September, at a new venue, called the Kenn Centre, adjacent to the A38 near the foot of Haldon Hill in Devon. This was designed to make it a little easier for the Cornish players to get there, although it’s still a good distance from Truro.

This year there was no Graded Section, but Devon used their more numerous troops to form a 1st team from the best 12 avaialble players, and a 2nd team from the next best dozen. This latter team used up some of the players who would in earlier years have formed the basis of a grade-limited team.

The Centre proved to be an excellent venue for the event, being modern in construction, with large playing hall, analysis room, kitchen facilities and ample parking. It will be surely used again at some point for chess events.

The Organiser, Mark Hassall, (standing centre) having enjoyed a quick win, takes time to monitor the progress of his Cornish team-mates. The nearest game involves clubmates Brian Gosling (B) vs Oliver Wensley (partly obscured) Brian Gosling

The outcome can be best shown in these 2 tables.

KEY
Teams Pos Pts
D1 = Devon 1st team Bd. 1 1st
S2 = Somerset Bd. 2 2nd 7
C3 = Cornwall  Bd. 3 3rd 5
D2nd 4 = Devon 2nd team Bd. 4 4th
G5 = Gloucestershire  Bd. 5 5th 4
Bd Team White Grd Black Grd Team
1 C1 J. Menadue 191 ½ ½ N. Crickmore 214 D1
2 D2nd 1 J. Haynes 171 0 1 J. Rudd 215 S1
3 D2 W. Braun 203 1 0 M. Ashworth 192 G1
4 S2 F. Fernando 182 1 0 J. Hooker 178 C2
5 G2 J. Jenkins 185 1 0 T. Thynne 170 D2nd 2
6 C3 L. Retallick 174 ½ ½ P. Brooks 170 D2nd 3
7 S3 A. Footner 181 1 0 P. Meade 178 G3
8 D2nd 4 M. Shaw 169 0 1 G. Bolt 196 D3
9 G4 P. Kirby 177 ½ ½ D. Saqui 169 C4
10 D4 J. Underwood 192 ½ ½ A. Bedialauneta 159 S4
11 C5 M. Hassall 168 1 0 P. O’Neill 188 D5
12 G5 P. Masters 175 ½ ½ D. Freeman 156 S5
13 D2nd 5 D. Regis 166 0 1 R. Kneebone 164 C6
14 D6 S. Martin 186 1 0 R. Ashworth 161 G6
15 S6 R. Knight 156 ½ ½ V. Ramesh 164 D2nd 6
16 C7 T. Manton 163 0 1 M. Taylor 144 G7
17 D2nd 7 W. Ingham 163 0 1 J. Wheeler 185 D7
18 D8 B. Hewson 184 1 0 N. Senior 150 S7
19 S8 T. Woodward 150 ½ ½ R. Stephens 160 C8
20 G8 A. Gibson 139 0 1 M. Wilson 161 D2nd 8
21 C9 C. Sellwood 155 0 1 T. Paulden 183 D9
22 D2nd 9 C. Scott 160 1 0 A. Champion 147 S9
23 D10 C. Lowe 176 ½ ½ A. Richards 133 G9
24 S10 C. Purry 147 1 0 R. Smith 153 C10
25 G10 I. Blencowe 131 ½ ½ G. Body 157 D2nd 10
26 C11 G. Trudeau 148 1 0 P. Bending 122 G11
27 S11 T. Wallis 144 0 1 P. Hampton 172 D11
28 D2nd 11 T. Lundin 156 1 0 J. Morgan 146 C12
29 G12 D. Walton 109 0 1 N. Mills 133 S12
30 D12 O. Wensley 172 1 0 B. Gosling 154 D2nd 12

Gloucestershire’s Varying Fortunes (24.12.2016.)

Last month, Gloucestershire beat a Somerset side, weakened by defaults, by 9½-6½ points, the details being as follows:- (Glos. names 1st in each pairing). 1.P. Townsend (200) 0-1 J. Rudd (213). 2.J. Stewart (191) 1-0 P. Krzyzanowski (183). 3.N. Hosken (187) 0-1 M. Stanforth (179). 4.M. Ashworth (186) 1-0 A. F. Footner (175). 5.J. Jenkins (181) ½ -½ M. French (170). 6. P. Masters (179) 1-0 Default. 7.J. Jones (176) ½ -½ D. Freeman (163). 8.C. Mattos (174) 1-0 G. N. Jepps (159). 9.P. Kirby (171) 0-1 A. A. Champion (153). 10.P. J. Meade (163) 1-0 R. Knight (150). 11.J. Fowler (158) ½ -½ C. Purry (149). 12.R. Dixon (155) ½ -½  J. E. Fewkes (142). 13.R. Ashworth (153) ½ -½ T. Wallis (142). 14.P. Baker (146) 0-1 C. Strong (133). 15. A. Killey (138) 1-0 Default. 16.I. Blencowe (129) 1-0 d/f.

It was a different story when they subsequently met a strong Devon side. The top half of the match was competitive with Gloucestershire sharing the points 5 – 3, but from board 9 down Devon were able to field a raft of 170+ players, too strong for their opponents to cope with. The details as follows:- (Glos. names first). 1.N. Hosken (187) 0-1 D. Mackle (208). 2.M. Ashworth (186) ½-½ J. K. Stephens (192). 3.J. Jenkins (181) 1-0 Dr. T. J. Paulden (187). 4.P. Masters (179) 0-1 P. O’Neill (185). 5.C. Mattos (174) ½-½ S. Homer (190). 6.D. Dugdale (172) 0-1 Dr. J. Underwood (183). 7.P. Kirby ½-½ B. W. R. Hewson (182). 8.P. J. Meade (163) ½-½ S. Martin (182). 9.J. Fowler (158) 1-0 Dr. D. Regis (175). 10.R. Ashworth (153) ½-½  P. Sivrev (175). 11. P. Baker (146) 0-1 C. Lowe (175). 12.A. Papier (143) 0-1 J.  F. Wheeler (174). 13.A. Killey (136) ½-½ T. F. Thynne (170). 14.I. Blencowe (129) 0-1 P. Hampton (161). 15.A. Richards (123) ½-½  O. E. Wensley (168). 16.P. Bending (115) 0-1 M. O. Marshall (166).

This was the complex game from Bd. 4 in which both players became very short of time.

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.Nf3 d6 5.Bg5 0–0 6.e3 Nbd7 7.Be2 c5 8.d5 a6 9.0–0 Rb8 10.Qc2 Qa5 11.a4 Re8 12.h3 Nf8 13.Rfd1 Bd7 14.Bf4 Qb4 15.Ne1 Qb6 16.Ra3 Rbd8 17.a5 Qc7 18.Bf3 Bc8 19.Qd2 N8d7 20.Nd3 b6 21.axb6 Nxb6 22.b3 Nfd7 23.Ne4 Bb7 24.Ra2 h6 25.g4 e5 26.dxe6 26.Bh2 Might have been better in the longer term. 26…Rxe6 27.Nxd6 Bxf3 28.Nxf7 attacking queen & rook. 28…Ne5 Better might have been 28…Qc8 29.Nxd8 Qxd8 30.Rc1 29.Nxd8 Rd6 Not 29…Qxd8? 30.Nxe5 Qxd2 31.Rdxd2 leaving Black the exchange & 2 pawns down. 30.Nxe5 Bxd1? Better would be 30…Rxd2 31.Rdxd2 Bxe5 31.Nd3 Bxb3 An alternative continuation might be 31…Qxd8 32.Bxd6 Bxb3 33.Nxc5 Bxa2 34.Ne6 leaving Black with a bishop for 2 pawns. 32.Ne6! Qc6 33.Bxd6 Bxa2 Black also had 33…Nxc4 34.Qe2 Qxd6 35.Nexc5 Bxa2 but White has threats after 36.Qxa2. 34.Ndxc5 Bxc4 35.Nxg7 Kxg7 35…Nc8 36.Be5 Qxc5 37.Qd8+ Qf8 38.Ne8. 36.Qd4+ Kh7 37.Bf4? 37.Qf6 would have threatened mate after 38.Qe7+ K moves, 39.Qe8. 37…Qd5? 38.Qxd5? 38.Qf6 followed by 39.Be5 would threaten mate. 38…Nxd5 39.Bd6 Kg7 40.e4 Nc3?? 41.Be5+ Kf7 42.Bxc3 1–0

Last week’s problem was solved by 1.Qe4!

This new 3-mover is a little more difficult than usual, so you might need to find a quiet spot somewhere after the Christmas dinner.

White to play and mate in 3

East Devon Congress Approaches.

County captains are having to beef up their teams these days if they are to keep up with their opponents, and that means getting their very best players out at weekends. In the Somerset vs Gloucestershire match earlier in the season, this was the game from Board 1.

White: GM Matthew Turner (238) – Black: Joey Stewart (200).

Semi-Slav Defence [D46]

1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.e3 e6 5.Nbd2 Nbd7 6.Bd3 Bd6 7.0–0 0–0 8.e4 dxe4 9.Nxe4 Nxe4 10.Bxe4 Nf6 11.Bc2 Re8 12.b3 Bf8 13.Ne5 h6 14.Qd3 g6 15.Re1 Qe7 16.Qh3 Nd7 17.Bxh6 Nxe5 18.Rxe5 Bxh6 Black’s queen has some scope to probe the queenside, but mustn’t neglect queenside development e.g. 18…Qa3 19.Rae1 Rd8 20.Bxf8 Qxf8 21.Rd1. 19.Qxh6 Bd7 20.Rg5 From now on, White conducts a relentless kingside attack. 20…Qf8 21.Qh5 Re7 22.Qf3 How carefully did White check out the possibilities after 22.Bxg6 fxg6 23.Rxg6+ Rg7 24.Rh6 threatening 25.Rh8 mate 24…Re7 25.Rh8+ Kg7 26.Rxf8 Rxf8 27.Qg5+ and Black has R+B for the queen, though they are both somewhat hemmed in and Black will find it hard to shake off the shackles. 27…Kf7 28.Re1 Rg8 29.Qf4+. Clearly he decided not to risk it. 22…Qg7 23.h4 Be8 24.h5 f6 25.Rg3 g5 26.h6 Qxh6 27.Rh3 Qf8 28.g4 Rg7 29.Rh6 Rd8 30.Rxf6 Rf7 31.Qe4 Qe7 If 31…Rxf6?? 32.Qh7 mate. 32.Rxe6 Qd7 33.Re1 Rf8 34.Re7 threatening 35.Qh7 mate 34…Qxe7 35.Qxe7 Rd7 36.Bh7+ 1-0. There would follow 36…Kh8 37.Qxf8+ Kxh7 38.Rxe8 etc.

The 41st East Devon Congress starts 4 weeks on Friday at the Exeter Corn Exchange. The new January grades were published last week, so potential entrants can now be sure of which sections they are eligible for, and need not delay their entries further. These should go to the Entry Secretary, Tim Paulden (e-mail  timpaulden@gmail.com). If needed, entry forms are downloadable from the chessdevon website. The available sections are the Open; the Major for under-155 grades and the Minor for under-125 grades.

Here is a game from last year’s congress by one of the joint winners.

White: Dominic Mackle (208). Black: Stephen Dilleigh (185)

Queen’s Gambit [D30]

1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.c4 e6 4.e3 Be7 5.Nbd2 0–0 6.Bd3 b6 7.0–0 Bb7 8.b3 Nbd7 9.Bb2 Ne4 10.Qc2 Black is now faced with either losing a key central pawn or weakening his pawn structure in order to defend his knight. 10…f5 11.Rad1 Rc8 12.a3 Ndf6 13.Ne5 Nxd2 14.Qxd2 Nd7 15.f4 Nxe5 16.fxe5 Bg5 17.Qe2 Qe7 18.Ra1 a5 19.a4 dxc4 20.bxc4 Qd7 21.Kh1 c5 22.Rad1 Qxa4 23.d5 Qe8 24.e4 The weakness of Black’s pawns now becomes apparent as White’s queen cuts loose. 24…fxe4 25.Rxf8+ Qxf8 26.Qxe4 g6 27.Qg4 Qh6 28.Qxe6+ Kh8 29.Qxb6 Ba8 30.Rf1 Rf8 31.Qxc5 Rxf1+ 32.Bxf1 Bf4 33.Qc8+ winning the bishop. 1–0

Taken from a recent game, this position is materially level, but Black has a knockout blow available. Can you see it?

Black to play and win by force.

Gloucestershire beat Devon & The London Chess Classic (12.12.2015.)

Gloucestershire beat Devon recently for the first time in years, probably due to a combination of Devon missing several of their top players for this match and the fact that Gloucestershire is starting to draw more on players from the north Bristol League area. Details as follows:- (Devon names 2nd in each pairing).

1.M. Townsend (203) ½-½ J. Stephens (196) 2.J. Stewart (200) 1-0 J. Underwood (186). 3.I. Robson (199) 1-0 L. Hartmann (190). 4.M. Ashworth (190) ½-½ T. Paulden (185). 5.J. Jenkins (185) ½-½ S. Martin (184). 6.N. Hosken (184) 1-0 D. Regis (180). 7.P. Masters (182) ½-½ C. (179). 8.P. Kirby (181) ½-½ B. Hewson (176). 9.C. Jones (180) ½-½ J. F. Wheeler (177). 10.P. Meade (169) ½-½ P. Sivrev (172). 11.P. Dodwell (14 9) ½-½ O. Wensley (170). 12.R. Ashworth (145) ½-½ T. Thynne (167). 13.P. Baker (141) ½-½ G. Body (163) 14.C. Haynes (138) ½-½ W. Ingham             (158). 15.B. Whitelaw(137) ½-½ P. Brooks (158). 16.A. Richards (125) 0-1 N. Butland (155).

Another feature of the match was the high percentage of draws (75%).

This is also the case in the London Chess Classic, with only 3 wins from the first 20 games. They are using a different scoring system, sometimes referred to as “Bilbao Rules”, players earning 3 points for a win, 1 for a draw and none for a loss. “Sofia Rules” also apply, whereby players cannot agree a draw without the arbiter’s permission, and then only granted when there is deemed to be no purposeful play left in the position. There is also the added incentive of best game prizes.

Yet the preponderance of draws continues. Most of the games have been well-contested, but almost inevitably, when the world’s top players are involved, things will gravitate towards a draw as irresistible attack meets immovable defence. Striving too hard for wins will certainly invite the danger of losses, handing 3 pts to an opponent. Early on, sharp attacking openings like the Sicilian Defence have been largely absent, in favour of the more solid and safer, Ruy Lopez. The event finishes today.

Here’s a rare win from the early stages.

White: V. Topalov. Black: A. Giri.

Grünfeld Defence [D71]

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.g3 c6 4.Bg2 d5 5.Qa4 Nfd7 6.cxd5 Nb6 7.Qd1 cxd5 8.Nc3 Nc6 9.e3 Bg7 10.Nge2 0–0 11.0-0 Re8 12.b3 e5 13.dxe5 Nxe5 14.h3 Bf5 15.Nd4 Bd3 16.Re1 Ba6 17.Qd2 Nd3 18.Rd1 Bxd4 19.exd4 Qf6 20.a4!? Qxd4!? 21.a5 Nd7 22.Ra4 Qe5 23.Nxd5 Nxc1?! 24.Rxc1 Nf6 25.Nc7 Rad8 26.Qf4 g5 27.Qb4 Qb2 28.Raa1 Re2 29.Qc5 h6 30.Nxa6 bxa6 31.Rab1 Qd2 32.Bf3 Ne4! 33.Qxa7?? Nxf2! 34.Bxe2 Nxh3+ 35.Kf1 Qd5! 36.Bh5 Qh1+ 37.Ke2 Qg2+ 38.Ke1 Re8+ 39.Kd1 Nf2+ 40.Kc2 Ne4+ 0-1 After 41.Kd3 Qd2+ 42.Kc4 Rc8+ it’s mate next move.

In last week’s position, Anand lost to the queen sacrifice 1.QxP+! forcing 1…RxQ 2.Ng6+ Kg8 3.Rh8 mate. Here’s a Topolov loss from some years ago. White to play and win.

White to play & beat Topolov

Glos. vs Devon Results (18.10.2014.)

Gloucestershire met Devon on Saturday at West Buckland in Rd. 1 of the 2014 – ‘15 Inter-County competition. It was a well-contested contest, although in the end Devon forced a comfortable enough 12-4 win, mainly due to their greater strength in the bottom half of the team.

This was also the debut for former presenter of TV science programmes, Adam Hart-Davis, who is now a regular at the Plymouth Chess Club.

Here are the details, with Gloucestershire names first in each pairing and grades in brackets.

1.J. Stewart (207) 0-1 D. Mackle (203). 2. P. J. Meade (182) 0-1 J. K. Stephens (194). 3. N. K. Hosken (181) ½- ½ S. J. Homer (188). 4. M. J. Ashworth (181) ½- ½ P. Sivrev (187). 5. J. Jenkins (176) 1-0 J. Wheeler (181). 6. P. J. Kirby (173) ½- ½ J. Underwood (179). 7. P. Dodwell (163) 0-1 D. Regis (176). 8. B. Whitelaw (159) 0-1 A. W. Brusey (176). 9. R. M. Ashworth (151) 0-1 B. W. Hewson (174). 10. A. Richards (136) ½- ½ W. Ingham (176). 11. A. N. Walker (134) ½- ½ M. Shaw (170) 12. P. Baker (132) 0-1 G. Body (169). 13 K. Bendall (131) ½- ½ M. Stinton-Brownbridge (164). 14. J. Caterer (128) 0-1 I. S. Annetts (162) 15. P. Bending (122) 0-1 A. Hart-Davis (161). 16. J. B. Harris (115) 0-1 C. J. Scott (157).

Here is a game with notes based on those kindly supplied by the winner.

White: Jim Caterer (128). Black: Ivor Annetts (162).

Caro-Kann – Exchange Variation [B13]

1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 cxd5 4.Bd3 Nc6 5.c3 Qc7 6.Ne2 If 6.Nf3 then 6…Bg4 is a little more problematic. 6…Bg4 7.f3 Bd7 8.Bf4 e5 9.dxe5 Nxe5 So far, but no further, all was known to Black from the 2002 game Gonzalez v Sasikiran. 10.Bc2 Bd6 11.0–0 Ne7 12.Nd4 h5 13.Ba4 0–0–0 Now the race is on to start a telling attack against the enemy king. White starts well in this respect. 14.Bxd7+ Rxd7 15.b4 Kb8 16.a4 N7g6 17.Bg3 h4 18.Nb5 Qc6 19.Qd4 b6 If 19…hxg3 20.Qxa7+ Kc8 21.Qa8+ Bb8 22.Na7+ That’s as far as Black got with his analysis. It seems to win the Black queen but White’s own queen can become trapped in the corner – or worse e.g. 24…Ba7+ 25.Kh1 Rxh2 mate. 24…Ba7+ 25.Qxa7 Nxa7 and Black is a piece for a pawn to the good! 20.Bf2 h3 21.Nxd6 hxg2 22.Kxg2 Rxh2+ 23.Kg3 If 23.Kxh2 Nxf3+ 24.Kg2 Nxd4 25.Bg3 Black was mildly worried about this move but all lines are good for him. 23…Rh4 24.Qxh4 Nxh4 25.Kxh4 Qxd6 Black was thinking his opponent would not pin the knight with Bg3 because it would be mate. And yet…. 26.Bg3?? Qh6# 0–1

Last week’s position was ended after 1.Qxa7+! RxQ 2.RxR+ Kb4 3.Ra4 mate.

Here is another hitherto unpublished 2-mover by Dave Howard.

White to mate in 2

Glos v Hants & Bristol Winter Congress Results (01.02.2014.)

Hampshire proved too strong for Gloucestershire when they met at Urchfont (Wilts) recently, making amends for their earlier draw against Cornwall. Glos. names 1st: 1.N. Hosken 0-1 I. Thompson. 2.D, Lambourne 0-1 D. Tunks. 3.J. Jenkins 0-1 C. Bellers. 4.M. Ashworth ½-½ P. Cooper. 5.P. Meade 0-1 F. Mcleod. 6.P. Dodwell ½-½ T. Davis. 7.P. Denison 0-1 D. Fowler. 8.G. Taylor 0-1 S. Smith. 9. C. Haynes 0-1 C. Priest. 10.K. Bendall 0-1 Miss G. Moore. 11.B. Whitelaw ½-½ M. Roberts. 12. P. Baker 0-1 J. Chilton. 13.J. Caterer 0-1 D. Culliford. 14.R. Ashworth 1-0 J. Barnett. 15.P. Bending 1-0 S. Murphy. 16.D. Morse 0-1 T. Cutter.

The Bristol League held another successful Winter Congress at the Holiday Inn last weekend. The prizewinners included the following:

Open: 1st C. Beaumont (Clifton). 2nd= D. Buckley (Bath); M. Harris (Horfield); G. Morris (Clifton); M. Payne & D. Graham (both Worthing). Grading prizes: U-188: S. Piper (Salisbury). U-178: J. Turner (Cwmbran). U-167: M. Jiminez (Clifton).

Major: 1st G. Harvey (S. Bristol). 2nd= R. Lowery (Patchway) & R. Harron (Bristol). Grading prizes: U-148: A. Rossiter (Cabot). U-141: N. Derrick (Cabot). U-130: P. Chatterjee (Clifton).

Minor: 1st D. Rowan. 2nd= R. Porter & J. Walpole (both University); P. Jackson. Grading prizes: U-120: D. McGeeney (Cabot). U-114: A. Fraser. U-104: A. Telang (Clifton). U-91: H. Aubin-Parvu.

This was the Open winner’s 1st game.

White: C. Beaumont (221). Black: M. Kascak (c. 180).

Queen’s Indian Defence [E18]

1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.g3 b6 4.Bg2 Bb7 5.0–0 Be7 6.Nc3 c5 7.d4 d6 8.d5 Immediately staking a claim to the centre. 8…exd5 9.cxd5 0–0 10.e4 Re8 11.e5 Ng4 12.Bf4 dxe5 13.Nxe5 Nxe5 Having got the passed pawn, the stronger player is happy to keep making equal exchanges in order to keep it simple… 14.Bxe5 Bd6 15.Bxd6 Qxd6 16.Qa4 Qd7 … up to a point. 17.Qh4 Na6 18.Rad1 Nb4 19.a3 Na6 20.Qf4 Nc7 21.h4 Rad8 22.Kh2 The trap is set. 22…Nb5 23.Bh3 1-0 Winning a piece by forcing the queen away from the defence of her knight.

In last week’s position Flear finished neatly with 1.Rxc8 Qxc8 2.Rd8 Qc7 3.Rxe8! and Black resigned because QxN mate is inevitable.

In his book, Tactimania, Flear doesn’t only give his wins. He loses this one against his fellow GM from Leicester, Mark Hebden. Flear threatens to win the exchange and a pawn, so how did White deal with that and force a win in the space of 6 moves?

White to play and win

Devon Vs Glos Result (30.11.2013.)

Devon beat Gloucestershire in their match in West Buckland at the weekend, but not by the margin that their overall superior strength might have suggested, the score being 9½-6½. Here are the details – Devon names first.

1.D. Mackle 0-1 J. Stewart.

2.K. W. Derrick 0-1 N. Hosken.

3.A. Boyne 1-0 D. Lambourne.

4.J. K. Stephens 0-1 J. Jenkins.

5.S. J. Homer 1-0 M. Ashworth.

6.D. Regis 0-1 P. J. Meade.

7.A. W. Brusey ½-½ P. Dodwell.

8.J. Underwood 1-0 G. Taylor.

9.M. Shaw ½-½ A. Walker.

10.B. W. R. Hewson ½-½ B. Whitelaw.

11. T. F. Thynne 1-0 P. Baker.

12.P. Brooks 1-0 J. Carterer.

13.G. Body ½-½ A. Richards.

14.W. Ingham 1-0 R. Ashworth.

15.N. Rahimili ½-½ I. Blencowe

16.S. Martin 1-0 P. Bending.

Former Gloucestershire Captain and Bristol League President, Ken Derrick, plays for Devon these days, but provided a bright spot for his former county.

White: N. Hosken (191). Black: K. W.   Derrick (206).

Dutch Defence – Leningrad System.

Notes by Ken Derrick.

1.d4 d6 2.Nf3 g6 3.c4 Bg7 4.g3 f5 5.Bg2 Nf6 6.b3 0–0 7.Bb2 c6 8.0–0 Re8 9.Qc2 Nbd7 10.Nbd2 e5 11.dxe5 dxe5 12.e4 Challenging Black’s “Dutch” f5 pawn. 12…Nc5 12…fxe4 13.Nxe4 Nxe4 14.Qxe4 Nc5 seems to be a playable alternative. 13.Rad1 Qc7 14.Nh4 Nfxe4 15.Nxe4 Nxe4 16.Bxe4 fxe4 17.Qxe4 Bh3 18.Rfe1 Rad8 19.Nf3 Bf5 20.Qe3 Rxd1 21.Rxd1 Bg4 22.Re1 e4 Black had planned 22…Bxf3 23.Qxf3 Qa5 with good counterplay, but couldn’t bring himself to swap off his good bishop. The text accepts the loss of the e-pawn in the hope of benefitting from the weak white squares around the king. 23.Bxg7 Qxg7 24.Nd2 Bf5 25.f3 Bringing further pressure against the isolated pawn. 25…Qb2 26.a4? 26.Nxe4 was better. 26…Rd8? Too hasty – missing the chance to justify his 22nd move. If 26…Bh3! the e4 pawn cannot be taken. 27.Nxe4 Bxe4 28.Qxe4 Rf8 Black could not regain his pawn with 28…Qxb3 because he would lose his rook to 29.Qe6+ Kf8 (Or 29…Kh8 30.Qf6+) 30.Qe7+; 28…Rd2?? hands White a forced mate. 29.Qe3 Qf6 30.Kg2 Kg7 31.Qe5 Rf7 32.f4 Rd7 33.Kf3 Rd3+ 34.Re3 Rxe3+?? 35. Kxe3 1-0 Lack of time caused this oversight. The resulting K+P ending is an easy win for White.

Last week’s 2-mover was solved by 1.Ba7! threatening 2.RxR mate, and if 1…RxR then 2. PxR=Q mate.

In this position, White is 2 pieces down, but at least his forces are active. Can he force the issue before Black completes his piece development?

White to play and win quickly

Ron Powis (1926 – 2013)

Ron Powis of Stroud, Gloucestershire, died peacefully on 11th June, aged 87.

In 1988 he was granted the President’s Award for Services to Chess, in only its fifth year of existence of existence, alongside another two luminaries, P. E. Morrish and P. E. Gibbs. His citation is a good summary of his activities up to that time, although that was a quarter of a century ago, and several of the the records quoted there were subsequently to be greatly exceeded.

It reads thus:- “Ron Powis has served chess at local, County, Union and National level for any years. Most players will know him as a Controller and organiser of Congress chess and he is a Senior Arbiter of the Federation. Events at which he has controlled include the B.C.F. Annual Congress ten times, from 1973 to 1983; the West of England Congress eight times and organised and controlled the Cotswold Congress since 1969″ (2013 was the 1st year he had not officiated at this event)

“At Union level he has been Congress Secretary since 1983 and President of WECU in 1984 – 86, besides representing his county numerous occasions at their meetings. However, it is for the benefit of his county that Ron Powis has also used his adminstrative skill. He has been Secretary of the Gloucestershire County Chess Association since 1956 and the North Gloucestershire League Secretary since 1980. In addition, he has held various other posts on the County Executive, including President, and Correspondence Chess Secretary. He is a member and match captain of the Stroud Club and for 5 years has been President of the North Gloucestershire Primary Schools Association.

Ron Powis is also the chess correspondent for the Gloucester Citizen and has written nearly 1,2000 columns over the past 23 years.

As a player, Ron Powis has been County Champion twice and North Gloucestershire Champion nine times. and his best win was in a local league match against the late C. H. O’D Alexander. In the last 32 years he has only missed one game for his county team, a truly remakable record, which only emphasises his loyalty to his county.

Through his contribution as Arbiter and Administrator Ron Powis has enabled many to enjoy playing chess and this award is in recogntion of his efforts”.

His son, Mike, adds that he had been Secretary of the North  Gloucestershire Chess Association up to 1991, making 35 years in all. He had also arbited at many other events, such as the Stroud RapidPlay, Bristol Manor Tyres, Yeovil, Weymouth, Hereford.

1958: WECU Congress at Newquay. Ron is standing immediately in fron of the man in the back row smoking a pipe (I. T. Sifton). He was playing in the Championship, coming 9th= with 2.5 pts.

 

Detail of above