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Posts Tagged ‘Somerset chess’

Somerset vs Hants Details (29.03.2014.)

As reported last week, Somerset won the WECU Championship by beating Hampshire 8½-6½ in a close match at Mere. The details were as follows (Hants names first in each pairing). 1. I. Thompson (217) 1-0 D. Buckley (212). 2. J. Tambini (198) 0-1 J. Rudd (211). 3. D. Tunks (188) ½-½ P. Krzyzanowski (199). C. Bellers (186) 1-0 B. Edgell (198). 5. P. Cooper (182) 1-0 M. Payne (193). 6. D. Fowler (181) 0-1 P. Chaplin (189). 7. S. Knox (167) 0-1 A. Footner (183). 8. D. F. Thompson (160) ½-½ D. Littlejohns (182). 9. T. Davis (159) ½-½ B. Morris (174). 10. C. Priest (158) ½-½ G. Jepps (158). 11. G. Jones (158) ½-½ C. Purry (165). 12. Miss G. Moore (147) 0-1 J. Byrne (161). 13. R. Davenport (140) 0-1 D. Peters (158). 14. J. Chilton (139) ½-½ W. Taylor (157). 15. R. Ashmore (137) ½-½ J. Fewkes (152).  Somerset also won an U-160 match by 3½-2½ the details of which are:- 1. T. Chapman (135) ½-½ A. Champion (154). 2. D. Culliford (131) ½-½ D.  Freeman (148). 3. M. Pope (119) ½-½ U. Effiong (142). 4. S. Murphy (113) 0-1 P. Wojcik (141). 5. J. Barnett (111) 1-0 T. West (137). 6. T. Cutter (109) 0-1 S. Pickard (111).

The next big event is the Bristol Spring Congress on the weekend of 11th – 13th April. Details from G. Mill-Wilson on 0779 0167415 or e-mail tugmw@blueyonder.co.uk. This is followed by the WECU Championship and congress in Exmouth. Details from Meyrick Shaw on 01395-275494 or e-mail: meyrick.shaw@hotmail.co.uk.

In this game from last year’s event, a former WECU Champion loses out in a lively game.

White: Paul Helbig (180). Black: John Stephens (191).

Closed Sicilian Defence [B26]

1.e4 c5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.g3 g6 4.Bg2 Bg7 5.d3 d6 6.Be3 Rb8 7.Qd2 b5 8.Nge2 Nd4 9.0–0 e6 10.Nc1 b4 White usually tries to get in a quick kingside attack, with Black countering later on the queenside, but here it is the other way round. 11.Nd1 Qa5 12.c3 bxc3 13.bxc3 Nc6 14.f4 Now White’s attack gets under way.Nge7 15.Ne2 Ba6 16.f5 exf5 17.exf5 gxf5 18.Bh6 Be5 19.Ne3 Nd4 20.Rab1 Kd7 21.Nf4 Bxf4 22.Bxf4 Qxc3! Black cleverly wins another pawn.  23.Qxc3 Ne2+ 24.Kh1 Nxc3 25.Rxb8 Rxb8 26.Nc4 Bxc4 27.dxc4 Rb2 28.Bg5 Rxa2 29.Bf3 Rb2 30.g4 a5 31.gxf5 Nc6 32.Bf6 Ne5 33.Bxe5 dxe5 34.f6 Rb1 35.Rxb1 Nxb1 36.Bg4+ Kd6 37.Bf5 Nc3 38.Bxh7 a4 0–1.

Last week’s 3-mover was solved by 1.Bb1 threatening 2.Qxa2 mate, so Black must play 1…Nb4 and then 2.Kb7 leaving Black the option of either taking the bishop or moving the defending knight.

In this position, White last played h5 to which Black played the natural-looking counter Re4. What did White now play to earn a double !! and the full point?

White to play a "Magic Move".

Cornwall’s Inspirational Leadership (07.12.2013.)

Somerset have been in all-conquering form of recent years but on Saturday they were unable to overcome Cornwall, having to be satisfied with an 8-8 draw. The Cornish lost on the top 4 boards by 3-1 and the same on the bottom 4 boards, but remarkably  scored 6 of the 8 points available on boards 5 – 12, to level things up. The details were: (Somerset names first).

1. J. Rudd 1-0 M. Hassall.

2. P. Chaplin ½-½ J. Menadue.

3. D. Littlejohns 1-0 M. Csuri.

4. M. Richardt ½-½ S. Bartlett.

5. B. Morris 0-1 D. Saqui.

6. C. Purry ½-½ L. Retallick.

7. A. F. Footner 0-1 G. Healey.

8. D. Painter-Ko 0-1 T. Slade.

9. J. E. Fewkes 1-0 C. Sellwood.

10. G. N. Jepps 0-1 G. Trudeau.

11.A. Champion ½-½ J. Nicholas.

12.M. Baker 0-1 J. Wilman.

13.D. Freeman 1-0 R. Smith.

14.N. N. Senior ½-½ D. J. Jenkins.

15.R. Knight 1-0 M. Richards.

16.C. Strong ½-½ D. R. Jenkins.

Cornwall’s previous match, against Hampshire, resembled a comedy of errors. A combination of illness and misunderstandings led to them arriving without any chess clocks, and their opponents turned up so late they would have been defaulted had there been any clocks. Eventually, some clocks were acquired locally and after lengthy negotiations between the two captains a match was played over 12 boards, which Cornwall won 7-5. However, it took several weeks of protracted discussion between interested parties before the result was finally agreed.

The details were as follows (Cornwall names first):-

1. M. Hassall v D. Tunks (did not play).

2. J. Menadue 1-0 T. Davis.

3. R. Kneebone 0-1 D. Fowler.

4. S. Bartlett ½-½ G. Jones.

5. D. Saqui 1-0 C. Priest.

6. L. Retallick ½-½ A. Manning.

7. T. Slade ½-½ Miss G. Moore.

8. G. Healey 1-0 B. Kocan.

9. C. Sellwood ½-½ S. Le Fevre.

10.G. Trudeau 0-1 J. Young.

11. J. Nicholas 1-0 R. Ashmore.

12. R. Smith 1-0 J. Barnett.

13. D. Lucas 0-1 S. Murphy.

Cornwall’s website has been recently upgraded (cornwallchess.org.uk), and on it one can read, amongst other things, a fuller report on the match by their new match captain, Professor David Jenkins, together with his amusing and erudite Cornish chess adaptation of Henry V’s call to arms at the Battle of Agincourt, as imagined by Shakespeare. As Cornwall are doing so well lately, it must be working. Devon had better beware when they meet at Saltash in January.

In last week’s ending, White wins by force: i.e. 1.Rf8+ KxR. 2.Qf7 mate.

Here is a new 2-mover by David Howard of East Harptree.

White to mate in 2 moves

Somerset Beat Devon – Again (19.10.13.)

In spite of several key absentees, Somerset managed to inflict a heavy defeat over rivals Devon last Saturday, by 10½ – 5½.

Devon names first: 1. D. Mackle 0-1 P. Krzyzanowski. 2. A. Boyne 0-1 P. Chaplain. 3. J. Stephens 0-1 D. LIttlejohns. 4. S. Homer 0-1 M. Payne. 5. T. Paulden 0-1 A. Wong. 6. P. Medina 1-0 C. Purry. 7. K. Hurst 0-1 A. Footner. 8. D. Regis 1-0 J. Fewkes. 9. A. Brusey 0-1 G. Crockart. 10. J. Underwood 0-1 P. Cusick. 11. B. Hewson 0-1 G. Jepps. 12. J. Fraser 1-0 D. Peters. 13. T. Thynne 1-0 A. Champion. 14. P. Brooks 0-1 M. Baker. 15. G. Body 1-0 D. Freeman. 16. S. Martin ½-½ N. Senior.

Devon fared better in the 2nd team match, winning 8-4. 1. J. Gorodi 1-0 C. McKinley. 2. M. Stinton-Brownbridge 1-0 R. Knight. 3. A. Kinder 0-1 C. Strong. 4. I. Annetts ½-½ T. West. 5. B. Gosling ½-½ U. Effiong. 6. J. Duckham 1-0 G. Daniel. 7. S. Murray ½-½ R. Challoner. 8. K. Atkins 0-1 C. Fewtrell. 9. R. Wilby 1-0 J. Wilkinson. 10. N. Mills ½-½ S. Pickard. 11. P. Dobber 1-0 N. Mills. 12. W. Taylor 1-0 R. Fenton.     

This win by a Bath University student was an impressive start to his Westcountry chess career.

White: S. J. Homer (188). Black: M. J.   Payne (184).

French Defence – Guimard Var. [C04]

1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nd2 Nc6 4.Ngf3 Nf6 5.e5 Nd7 6.Bd3 f6 7.Ng5 “Beware Greeks bearing gifts” – Black would be in terrible trouble if he took the knight e.g. 7…fxg5 8.Qh5+ g6 9.Bxg6+ Ke7 10.Qxg5+ forcing 10…Nf6 11.Qxf6+ Kd7 12.Qxh8 etc. 7…Ndxe5 Black can afford to ease the pressure by taking on e5, and also releasing d7 for his king, if required. 8.dxe5 fxg5 9.Qh5+ g6 10.Bxg6+ Kd7 11.Bd3 Nxe5 12.Nf3 Nxf3+ 13.Qxf3 h6 14.0–0 Bd6 15.Bd2 Qf8 White is much better developed at this point, but now helps Black’s cause. 16.Qg4 Kd8 17.f4 e5 18.f5 Qf6 19.h4 e4 20.hxg5 Qd4+ 21.Rf2 Bc5 22.Raf1 exd3 23.Qh5 dxc2 24.Bc1 Bxf5 Black’s bishops proceed to work well from the centre of the board.  25.g6 Qg4 26.g7 Rg8 27.Qf7 Be6 28.Qf6+ Kd7 29.Bxh6 Bd4 White must now exchange his queen and lose a rook.  0–1

Probably the shortest ever game in the history of the championship was this one. White: D. Freeman (151). Black: G. Body (160). 1.e4 e5 2.Bc4 Nf6 3.d3 c6 4.Nf3 Be7 5.Nxe5?? Qa5+ winning the knight 0-1.

In last week’s position, White can win immediately with 1.Kc3 when 2.Qb2 mate cannot be avoided.

This week’s position is a hitherto unpublished 2-mover by reader David Howard of East Harptree.

White to Mate in 2.

Devon vs Somerset

In their annual match in the WECU Inter-County Championship, Somerset were weakened by the absence of their top player, Jack Rudd and team Captain, Ben Edgell, both attending a crucial ECF meeting. Any pre-match hopes that Devon might have nurtured about the possibility of a rare win were stoked by the fact that they outgraded their opponents on every single one of the 28 boards. Added to that, Somerset gifted their opponents an early point after a few minutes, when Darren Freeman blundered a piece on move 5 and resigned immediately, creating what must surely be the shortest game in the history of the competition. What an opportunity!

However, it was all downhill for Devon from then onwards as they contrived to lose game after game using a variety of methods; weak opening moves, blunders losing a piece or overstepping the time control. Somerset won 9 of the top 11 games, a remarkable sequence. The concession of 3 losses on the lower boards did little to lighten the gloom for Devon. There was an impressive performance by a Somerset newcomer, Matthew J. Payne, recently enrolled at Bath University and formerly of Worthing and a product of the Sussex Juniors chess machine. His grade of 184 is 12 points up from his January grade, indicating he’s on a steep upward trajectory, backed up by his 195 rapidplay grade. He’s one to watch.

Devon’s  U-160 team fared much better, losing only 2 of their 12 games, and running out 8 – 4 winners.

  Devon 1 Grd     Somerset  1 Grd
1 D. Mackle 204 0 1 P. Krzyzanowski 197
2 A. K. Boyne 197 0 1 P. E. Chaplin 190
3 J. K. Stephens 190 0 1 D. P. Littlejohns 186
4 S. J. Homer 188 0 1 M. J. Payne 184
5 Dr. T. Paulden 186 0 1 A. V. Wong 181
6 P. Medina 180 1 0 C. S. Purry 177
7 K. J. Hurst 184 0 1 A. F. Footner 176
8 Dr. D. Regis 176 1 0 J. E. Fewkes 163
9 A. W. Brusey 181 0 1 G. N. Crockart 162
10 Dr. J. Underwood 172 0 1 P. W. Cusick 159
11 B. W. R. Hewson 165 0 1 G. N. Jepps 156
12 J. Fraser 163 1 0 D. Peters 156
13 T. F. Thynne 165 1 0 A. W. Champion 156
14 P. Brooks 167 0 1 M. R. Baker 152
15 G. Body 160 1 0 D. Freeman 151
16 S. Martin 162 ½ ½ N. N. Senior 149
  Totals   10½    
             
  Devon U-160       Somerset U-160  
1 J. G. Gorodi 159 1 0 C. J. S. McKinley 148
2 M. Stinton-Brown. 158 1 0 R. D. Knight 148
3 A. S. Kinder 150 0 1 C. M. Strong 144
4 I. S. Annetts 152 ½ ½ T. West 138
5 B. G. E. Gosling 151 ½ ½ U. Effiong 137
6 J. Duckham 146 1 0 G. Daniel 137
7 J. S. Murray 148 ½ ½ R. Challoner 136
8 K. P. Atkins 142 0 1 C. Fewtrell 130
9 R. G. Wilby 141 1 0 J. I. Wilkinson 125
10 N. Mills 140 ½ ½ S. Pickard 122
11 P. Dobber 136 1 0 N. Mills 124
12 W. R. P. Taylor 136 1 0 R. Fenton 121
  Totals   8 4    

 

Krzyzanowski vs Mackle in foreground.

Steve Homer (W) heading for a tough time against newcomer Matthew Payne.

George Crockart (W) made light of his 19 point grading deficit against Alan Brusey.

British U-150 Champion, John Gorodi, is currently on fire.

 

N. Mills (back to camera) was switched to avoid playing N. Mills (behind him)

 

Steve Murray vs Robin Challoner. Jon Duckham, next to him, finished his game in style.

British Championshipships Looming (01.06.2013.)

The arrival of June brings the British Championships that bit closer, as they return to the Westcountry next month, starting at the Riviera Centre, Torquay, on 28th July. The fact that this will be the 100th championship makes it that bit more special, and extra events have been organised to help mark the occasion, several of them quite unusual. For example, Gary Lane and Keith Arkell, past and present Paignton residents, will try to set a record for the greatest number of games played in 1 hour. The rate of moves is 1 minute per player per game, called “bullet chess”. Then 9 players will take part in an all-play-all simultaneous match, using 36 boards and there will be a prize for the player gaining the highest points total in all the tournaments he/she plays in, which, in theory, could be considerable.

Peter Chaplin of Weston-Super-Mare was Somerset’s only winner in their recent match against Lancashire.

White: P. Chaplin (187). Black: P. Almond (180).

Sicilian Defence – Close Variation [B50]

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.Nc3 a6 4.g3 Nf6 5.Bg2 Nc6 6.0–0 Bg4 7.h3 Bh5 8.d3 e6 9.Re1 Be7 10.Be3 0–0 11.Qd2 Qc7 12.g4 Bg6 13.Nh2 Rad8 14.f4 d5 15.exd5 If 15.f5 d4 16.Bf4 dxc3 17.bxc3 e5 18.Bg3. 15…exd5 16.Bf2 d4 17.Ne2 h6 18.f5 This lock-out of the bishop is a major factor in the eventual win. 18…Bh7 19.Bg3 Bd6 20.Bxd6 Qxd6 21.Qf4 Qd7 22.Ng3 Nb4 23.Re2 Nbd5 24.Qf3 g6 25.Re5 Rfe8 26.Rae1 Rxe5 27.Rxe5 Qd6 28.Re1 Ne3 29.Nhf1 Nxc2 30.Re2 Ne3 31.Nxe3 dxe3 32.Ne4 Nxe4 33.dxe4 Qd1+ 34.Bf1 Rd2 After the next skirmish, the weakness of Black’s bishop becomes more apparent.  35.Qxe3 Rxe2 36.Qxe2 Qxe2 37.Bxe2 gxf5 38.exf5 f6 39.Kf2 Kf8 40.Bc4 Ke7. If 40…b5 41.Be6 Ke7 and Black’s bishop is blocked out of the game.  42.Kf3 Kd6 43.Ke4. 41.Ke3 h5 42.Be6 hxg4 43.hxg4 b5 44.b3 a5 45.Bd5 If 45.a4 bxa4 46.bxa4 Kd6 47.Kf4 and Black hasn’t got a positive move on the board. 45…Kd6 46.Ke4 Kc7 47.Bf7 Kd6 48.Be8 Bg8 Finally the bishop is out, but still powerless. 49.Bxb5 Bd5+ 50.Kf4 Bg2 51.Bc4 Bc6 52.g5 fxg5+ 53.Kxg5 Ke7 54.f6+ Kf8 Bishop and pawn combine to keep the Black king on the back foot.  55.Kf4 a4 56.Ke5 axb3 57.axb3 1–0 Black resigns as his last pawn must fall.

Dave Howard’s problem last week was solved by 1.Be8! after which Black has 3 moves, all answered by a rook mate viz.  1…Kb5 2.Rd5#; 1…f4 2.Rh5# and 1…b5 2.Rc2#.

This 2-mover won 1st prize in the Uzbekistan Sport Committee Tourney 1947.

White to mate in 2.

Devon & Somerset Both Lose (25.05.2013.)

Saturday was scheduled as the quarter-final round of the National Stages of the Inter-counties tournament, with several West of England teams featuring in the various sections. Devon were drawn against Middlesex in the U-180 section and they met under the shadow of Old Sarum, near Salisbury. Devon players were hampered by the County Show traffic, causing a delayed start and one player misunderstanding the start time, all of which contributed to their 6–10 loss. However, the match was closer than the score suggested and several games could have gone either way. Devon’s three winners were Kevin Hurst, Mark Abbott and John Fraser. Here is the win on Board 4, with notes based on those kindly supplied by the winner.

White: K. J. Hurst (176). Black: A. Fulton (178).

Caro-Kann – by transposition. [B15]

1.e4 g6 2.d4 Bg7 3.Nf3 c6 4.Nc3 d5 5.e5 Bg4 6.h3 Bxf3 7.Qxf3 e6 8.Be3 Qa5 If 8…Qb6 9.0–0–0 still with advantage to White in space and development. 9.Be2 Nd7 10.0–0 a6 11.a3 c5 12.b4 cxb4 13.axb4 Qd8 14.b5 White toyed with the sacrifice 14.Nxd5 exd5 15.Qxd5 after which might have followed 15…Qc7 16.Bf3 Rb8 17.e6 fxe6 18.Qxe6+ and Black’s king is stuck in the centre and struggling. e.g. If 18…Ne7 19.Bg5 Nb6 20.Rfe1 Nbc8. 14…a5 15.b6 White offers a pawn in order to open up lines on the queenside. 15…Ne7 16.Nb5 0–0 17.Rfb1 Nc6 18.c3 White takes care to consolidate his centre before continuing with his attack 18…Nxb6 19.Qg3 h6 20.Bd3 Ne7 21.Nd6 Qc7 22.Bd2 Rfb8 23.Qh4! Having tied up most of Black’s piece-power on the queenside, White exploits his flexibility by switching quickly to the other wing. 23…Nf5 24.Bxf5 exf5 25.Bxh6 Bxh6 26.Qxh6 Nc8?? A blunder that loses immediately. Ne8 threatening both the queen and mate. 1–0. Black’s best chance was 26…Nc4! but it would still be a struggle after 27.Nxc4 Qxc4 28.Rb6 Ra6 29.Rab1 Rxb6 30.Rxb6 with a breakthrough planned on e6.

In the Open Section Somerset lost 5½-10½ to Lancashire, Mike Richardt and Peter Chaplin being their only winners. In the Minor Counties section, Gloucestershire lost by the same score to Lincolnshire, with Daniel Lambourne and Matthew Claypole being their only winners.

(NB: Please note that since going to press, it was ascertained that Richardt did lose his game, but his opponent was subsequently found to be ineligible. So, for the purposes of the match, the result of that game was reversed and Lancashire penalised an additional point. However, for grading purposes, Richardt’s loss will stand.)

Hants had a walkover against Warwickshire in the U-140s.

In last week’s position, World Champion Anand had no choices in losing to 1.Qxf7+ RxQ 2.Ng6+ Kg8 3.Rh8 mate.

Here is reader Dave Howard’s latest composition, hitherto unpublished. There are several mates in 3, but can you spot the only 2 move mate?

White to mate in 2

Somerset vs Glos Result (04.05.2013.)

The snow-delayed match between Somerset and Gloucestershire was finally played at Cheltenham last weekend, resulting in a win for the visitors by 11-5. Somerset thereby won the 1st Division of the WECU Inter-county competition (the Harold Meek Cup) and now go forward to the National Stage Quarter-Finals to meet Lancashire at Bloxwich in a fortnight.

Somerset’s winners were Jack Rudd, Peter Chaplin, Andrew Footner, Chris Purry, Gerry Jepps, Chris McKinlay, Adrian Champion and team captain, Roger Knight. Gloucestershire’s two winners were Matthew Claypole and Pat Baker.

This was Somerset’s win from Bd. 5.

White: P. J. Meade (168). Black: A. F.  Footner (186).

Chigorin Defence [D02].

1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bf4 Bg4 4.e3 f6 Usual here is an immediate 4…e6 but the text prepares the more assertive …e5. 5.Be2 e5 6.dxe5 Bxf3 7.Bxf3 fxe5 8.Bg3 e4 This advance gives Black a grip on the centre. 9.Be2 An interesting, if unpredictable alternative, was 9.Bh5+ g6 10.Nc3 and now if 10…gxh5 11.Qxh5+ Kd7 12.Nxd5 Bd6 13.Bxd6 cxd6 14.Qg4+ Ke8 15.Qg7 Qa5+ 16.Nc3 Qe5 17.Qxb7 Nge7 18.Qxa8+ Kf7 19.Qb7 Rb8 20.Qa6 Rxb2 21.Qa3 Rb4 22.0–0 leaving White the exchange and 2 pawns up. 9…Bd6 10.c4 Bxg3 11.hxg3 dxc4 12.Nc3 Nf6 13.Bxc4 Qe7 14.Qa4 14.0–0 would have prevented Black from castling on either side in the short term. 14…0–0–0 Preventing White from also castling long. 15.Bb5 Rd6 16.Bxc6 Rxc6 17.Rd1 a6 18.0–0 Qe5 19.Qd4 White would like to exchange pieces, but Black can see the weakness of the h-file. 19…Qh5 20.Nxe4 Ng4 21.Rfe1 Also not good enough is 21.Qd7+ Kb8 22.Rfe1 Rh6 23.Kf1 Rf8 24.Ke2 (24.Qxg7 Nxe3+ 25.Rxe3 Qxd1+ 26.Re1 Rh1#) 24…Nxf2+. 21…Rh6 0–1. White resigned. Play might have continued 22.Kf1 Nh2+ 23.Kg1 Nf3+ 24.Kf1 Nxe1 25.Qd7+ Kb8 26.Kxe1 Qg6 27.Rd4 Rh2.

Somerset resident Mickey Adams is currently playing in the Alekhine Memorial Tournament and after 5 rounds was lying 2nd jointly with Boris Gelfand, Lev Aronian and Laurent Fressinet a half point behind Vachier-Lagrave.

In last week’s position, Evans played 1.Bc6! offering his queen, but if taken he had 2.RxB mate, and Black can’t take the rook because his queen is pinned.

Here is an Adams finish from 1998. How did Black (to move) force resignation with a 2-move combination?

Black to move and win.

Devon vs Glos & Cornwall vs Somerset (16.03.2013.)

The final scheduled round of the Inter-County competition was held on Saturday. Devon managed to get out a strong side and cruised past Gloucestershire at West Buckland, winning 11½-4½. The details were as follows (Devon names first):-

1. D. Mackle 0-1 J. Stewart; 2. J. K. Stephens 1-0 D.Lambourne; 3. S. J. Homer 1-0 J. Waterfield; 4. D. Regis 1-0 J. Jenkins; 5. P. Medina 1-0 P. J. Meade; 6. J. Leung ½-½ P. Dodwell; 7. K. J. Hurst 1-0 P. Denison; 8. A. W. Brusey ½-½ A. N. Walker; 9. B.W. Hewson ½-½ M. J. Ashworth; 10. J. Underwood 1-0 B. Whitelaw; 11. M. V. Abbott 0-1 G. A. Brown; 12. O. Wensley 1-0 R. J. Dixon; 13. A. S. Kinder 1- 0 M. Claypole; 14. M. Shaw 1-0 A. Richards; 15. W. H. Ingham 0-1 P. Baker; 16. B. G. Gosling 1-0 P. R. Bending.

Meanwhile, knowing their opponents are capable of unexpected wins against any team that under-estimates them, Somerset took no chances against Cornwall and fielded a strong side at Exminster, eventually winning 9-3 over a 12 board match. The details were as follows (Cornish players 1st):- 1. J. F. Menadue 0-1 J. Rudd. 2. M. I. Hassal 1-0 P. Krzyzanowski. 3. R. Kneebone ½-½ D. LIttlejohns. 4. S. Bartlett ½-½ A. V. Wong. 5. J. Wilman 0-1 P. Chaplin. 6. G. Trudeau 0-1 A. Footner. 7. C. Sellwood 0-1 D. Painter. 8. 8. D. J. Jenkins ½-½ C. Purry. 9. M. Hill 0-1 J. E. Fewkes. 10. D. R. Jenkins ½-½ N. Senior. 11. C. Long 0-1 G. N. Jepps. 12. P. Spargo ½-½ D. Peters.

Apparently, the Hants vs Dorset match was not played due to a misunderstanding over the start time – another disruption to this season’s carefully planned programme of matches.

(Since going to press, it’s emerged that the Dorset team turned up at the venue for a 1 p.m. start, as defined in an e-mail, by the Dorset captain. As no Hants players had shown by 2 p.m. Dorset left for home. 5 minutes later, Hants players started arriving for a 2.30 start. Sodd’s Law, once again demonstrating that if a thing can go wrong, it probably will.) 

The West of England Congress at Exmouth starts a week on Friday and the entry limit is almost reached. Enquiries about late entries to Alan Crickmore on 01752-768206 or e-mail plymouthchess@btinternet.com.

Last week’s problem was solved by under-promoting the pawn to a bishop, forcing Black’s king to d8 and then Rd4 is mate.

The British Solving Championship was held recently at Eton College, and was won by Colin McNab ahead of the usual winners, Nunn and Mestel. Paignton’s Jon Lawrence came a respectable 13th out of 35 competitors. This one, by Charles Kemp, was one of the three 2-movers in the competition, worth 5 points each. It was first published in Plymouth’s Western Daily Mercury in 1919.

White to mate in 2.

Somerset v Devon Result (16.02.2013.)

In last Saturday’s round of the Inter-County Championship, Cornwall lost to Hampshire 3½ – 12½ at Gittisham, while at Norton Fitzwarren, in a closer match Somerset beat Devon by 9-7. The home team’s winners were Messrs Rudd, Buckley, Edgell, Krzyzanowski, Footner, Fewkes and Senior, while Devon’s victors were Messrs Sivrev, Medina, Brusey, Underwood and Kinder.

In contrast, Devon’s 2nd team ran out comfortable winners by 7½ – 4½, with wins by Messrs Thynne, Ingham, Body and Stinton-Brownbridge.

This game from Board 8 showed White seeking to exploit his speed of piece development.

White: A. F. Footner (174). Black: B. W. Hewson (174).

Caro-Kann – Spielmann Var. [B11]

1.e4 c6 2.Nc3 d5 3.Qf3 e6 4.d4 dxe4 5.Nxe4 Qxd4 6.Ne2 Qb6 7.N2c3 Nd7 8.Be2 Ngf6 9.Bf4 Nxe4 10.Nxe4 e5 11.Bd2 Nc5 12.Bc3 Qc7 13.0–0–0 Be6 14.Rhe1 Bd5 White is looking for something spectacular as he is fully developed while Black is not. 15.Nf6+!? He could also have tried 15.Rxd5 cxd5 16.Bb5+ Nd7 17.Ng5 threatening f7 and e5 17…0–0–0 18.Nxf7 d4 19.Bxd7+ Rxd7 20.Nxh8 Bd6 21.Bd2 and White is a piece up. 15…gxf6 16.Qxf6 Ne4 17.Qxh8 Nxc3 18.Bg4 Preventing castling and threatening e5. 18…Ne4 If 18…Nxd1 19.Rxe5+ Be6 20.Bxe6 Qd6 21.Bg4+ Kd8 22.Rf5 Ke7 23.Kb1 the threat is …Bh6+ winning the queen. 19.f4 Qe7 19…Nf2?? looking for the fork is answered by 20.Rxe5+. 20.Bf3 Qf6 21.Qxf6 Nxf6 22.Rxe5+ Kd7 Black now has 2 minor pieces for a rook, so White needs a move. 22…Be7 23.Rde1 Ng8 24.Bxd5 cxd5 25.Rxd5 23.c4 Bd6 24.cxd5 Bxe5 25.dxc6+ Kc7 26.fxe5 Ng8 27.cxb7 Re8 Black gets his rook out, but it must stay on the back rank to guard against the b7 pawn. 28.Rd4 Ne7 29.Rf4 White probes and Black must respond immediately as his time has almost gone. 29…Rf8 30.e6 f6 31.Rh4 Rh8 32.Rh6 Ng6 33.e7 Nxe7 34.Rxf6 h6 1-0 and Black’s flag fell, but he is lost anyway, being 3 pawns down. Play might have continued – 34…h6 35.Rf7 Re8 36.Rh7 Kd6 37.Rxh6+ Kc7 etc.

In an earlier game ending from Prague 1938, (given on 26th Jan.) White pulled off a near-miraculous win after 1.Rc8+ Kh7 2.Rh8+ KxR 3.Qh6+ Kg8 (the pawn was pinned) 4.Qxg7 mate.

Last week’s game ended with White powerless against this combination: 1…Qh2+ 2.Kf1 Qh1+ 3.Ng1 Nd2+ 4.RxN QxN+ 5.KxQ Re1 mate.

This week’s 2-mover is another world premier by Dave Howard.

White to mate in 2

Dorset vs Somerset II Results (29.12.2012.)

Dorset played Somerset II at Bradford Abbas earlier this month, in the 2nd division of the West of England Inter-county tournament. There was a grade ceiling of 160, but even so, Somerset won fairly comfortably by 10½-5½ as they had the greater strength in depth. The details were as follows (Dorset names first).

1.P. Aston (151) ½-½ D. Freeman (156). 2.W. Legg (149) 0-1 P. Humphreys (154). 3.S. Blake (145) 1-0 C. McKinley (152). 4.M. Fielding (140) 0-1 A. Bellingham (147). 5.P. Errington ½-½ A. Champion (147). 6.C. Winch ½-½ L. Cutting. 7.P. Brackner ½-½ S. Wojcik (143). 8.P. Jackson ½-½ T. Wallis (142). 9.J. Kelly ½-½ R. Knight (139). 10.P. Bland (128) 0-1 T. West (u/g). 11.F. Fallon (124) 0-1 C. Strong (136). 12.N. Mackie (117) 0-1 M. Baker (133). 13.K. Spooner (113) ½-½ I. Stringer (131). 14.J. George (108) 0-1 R. Fenton (127). 15. S. Jones (106) 1-0 M. Cooper (126). 16. M. Kaye (95) 0-1 N. Mills (125).

2013 is but a few days away, bringing with it the return of the British Championships to the Riviera Centre, Torquay, 27th July – 10th August, for the 4th time in 15 years. Even in a “normal” year Torquay attracts around 1,000 entries, but as it will be the 100th championship, there are bound to be a few added extra activities attracting even more players, so it will be important for westcountry players not to leave entering until the last minute. Although entry forms are not yet out, it is likely that many of the top players will not be passing up the chance of becoming the 100 British Champion, providing it doesn’t clash with tournaments abroad. Among them, Taunton’s Michael Adams would have to be favourite.

This, too, will be an opportunity for qualifiers from the local congresses to rub shoulders with the GMs. The next opportunity to win a qualifying place will be at the WECU Junior event in Swindon in February; then the WECU Congress in Exmouth over the Easter weekend, followed by Frome in May.

In last week’s ending from the London Chess Classic, Mickey Adams played Bh3+! And whether White takes it or not, Black will mate on h1.

This is another original composition from reader Dave Howard for you to puzzle over this holiday period, should you manage to get a few quiet minutes to yourself. It’s a 3-mover this time, but he tells me it’s not too difficult. White to move and mate in 3.

White to move & mate in 3.