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Posts Tagged ‘Surrey’

Somerset Beat Yorkshire etc. (26.05.2012.)

Last weekend saw the Quarter-Finals of the National Stages of the Inter-County tournament, and Somerset was drawn against Yorkshire. It featured a breathtaking ending where, as the last game to finish reached its final few seconds, the northcountry player needed only a draw to win the match, but lost on time, making the result 8-8, and Somerset going through on the tie-break rules.

Meanwhile, Devon had entered the Under-180 section and was drawn against Surrey. This was also a close encounter, but Devon eventually went down 7½-8½.

I shall give a game from each match next week.

This Rd. 1 game from the recent Frome Congress put paid to the top seed’s chances of 1st prize.

White: Patryk Krzyzanowski (184). Black: Bruce Jenks (206).

Benko Gambit [A57]

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 b5 The Benko Gambit, in which Black gives up a pawn, hoping to undermine White’s pawn centre, while opening up the queenside for his own pieces.  4.cxb5 a6 5.b6 White does not wish to fall in with Black’s plans. 5…d6 6.Nc3 g6 7.e4 Bg7 8.Qb3 Bb7 9.a4 a5 10.Nb5 Qxb6? 11.Nxd6+ Qxd6 12.Qxb7 0–0 13.Qxa8 Nxe4 14.Nf3 c4 White may be a rook up but his king is still vulnerable, stuck in the centre. 15.Qxa5 c3 16.Rb1 Nc6 17.Qb5 Not 17.dxc6?? because of 17…c2 threatening the rook and mate on d1. 17…cxb2 18.Bxb2 Rb8 It’s probably best to give up his queen, a luxury he can afford by virtue of still being a rook up. 19.Bxg7! If, for example, 19.Qxc6 Qb4+ 20.Ke2 Nc3+ 21.Qxc3 Bxc3 22.Bxc3 Qe4+ 23.Kd2 Rxb1 24.Bd3 Qf4+ and White will have great difficulty in the face of Black’s two active pieces. 19…Rxb5 20.Bxb5 Nb4 21.Be5 Nc2+ 22.Kd1 Qc5 23.Bd3 Nxf2+ 24.Kd2 f6 25.Bxc2 fxe5 26.Rhe1 Ng4 27.h3 Nf6 28.Nxe5 Qxd5+ 29.Kc1 Qxg2 30.Rb8+ Kg7 31.Rb3 Nd5 32.Ng4 h5 33.Be4 Qa2 34.Bxd5 hxg4? Necessary was 34…Qa1+ to escape the potential attack on the queen. 35.Rxe7+ Kh6 Which brings us to this week’s position. White is materially ahead, but the Black queen could prove dangerous if permitted, and it is important to finish the game off quickly before that happens. In fact, White did just that – his next move, as unexpected as it was effective, prompted resignation. Can you spot it?

White to play and win quickly.


Dave Howard’s 2-mover last week was solved by 1.Rh6! with a threat of mate on d4 that Black cannot escape.

Devon Beat Surrey Pt. II (05.06.2010)

Devon’s three wins in their recent match against Surrey was enough to take them through to the semi-finals. This was Robert Thompson’s game which featured an interestingly asymmetric balance of forces.

White: A. French (173). Black: R. Thompson (170).

Sicilian Defence – Alapin Variation. [B22]

1.e4 c5 2.c3 g6 3.d4 cxd4 4.cxd4 d5 5.e5 Nc6 6.Nc3 Bg7 7.h3 Nh6 8.g4 0–0 9.f4 White is being very bold in advancing all his kingside pawns so early without a prepared hiding place for his king. 9…f6 10.Bg2 fxe5 11.fxe5 e6 12.Nf3 Qb6 13.0–0 Black now sacrifices a rook for knight and pawn. 13…Rxf3 14.Bxf3 Qxd4+ 15.Qxd4 Nxd4 16.Bf4 Nf7 17.Rae1 Nc6 18.Nxd5 exd5 19.e6 Nh6 20.e7 Bd7 21.Bxd5+ Kh8 Black now has 2 knights for rook and pawn. 22.Bd6 Ng8 23.Rf8 Ncxe7 24.Rxa8 Nxd5 Now there is an even more interesting balance of forces with Black’s 3 minor pieces against 2 rooks. 25.Be5 a6 26.Kf2 Nb4 27.Bxg7+ Kxg7 There now follows a period of manoeuvring for positional advantage. 28.Rd1 Bc6 29.a3 Nd5 30.Rd4 Ngf6 31.Rc4 Bb5 32.Rd4 Nc7 33.Ra7 Bc6 One rook is now locked away while the other has to fend off attacks from the minor pieces. 34.Rc4 Nfd5 35.a4 Kf6 36.b4 Ke5 37.Kg3 Kd6 38.Rd4 Ne6 39.Rd2 Ng5 40.Rd1 Ne4+ 41.Kh4 h5 42.Ra1 Ke5 43.b5 axb5 44.axb5 Bxb5 (If 44…Ndf6 forces 45.g5) 45.Re1 Nf4 threatening g5 mate, so forcing… 46.Rxe4+ Kxe4 47.gxh5 gxh5 48.Kg5 Nxh3+ 49.Kxh5 Nf4+ 50.Kg5 Nd5 51.Ra5? The b-pawn is Black’s only hope of a win and yet White ignores it. 51…Bc6 52.Ra1 Nc3 53.Re1+ Kd5 54.Kf4 Kc4 55.Ke5 b5 56.Kd6 Be4 57.Ke5 b4 58.Rg1 b3 59.Rg8 Bc2 60.Rg4+ Ne4 61.Rg1 b2 62.Re1 Nc3 63.Rh1 Be4 64.Rg1 Kd3 65.Re1 Kc2 66.Kd4 Bd3 67.Rg1?? (A blunder, but the game is lost anyway, for if 67.Rh1 Kd2 68.Ke5 Nd1 69.Rh2+ Be2 and the b-pawn can queen safely). 67…Ne2+ White resigned as the knight will now come to c1 to protect the queening square of b1.

In the semi-final Devon are now due to meet Warwickshire who beat Lancashire 10-6.

The noted Cornish problemist, Dr. Maurice Jago was most prolific during the war when he was a lieutenant in the Royal Army Medical Corps. He became increasingly interested in the more flamboyant and unusual kinds of positions and problems. This 2-mover is taken from an article entitled Horse Play that he got published in the British Chess Magazine in 1943, and is typical of his work at that time.

White to mate in 2

Devon Beat Surrey (29.05.2010.)

On Saturday, Devon squeezed past Surrey in the national stages of the inter-county championship, on tie break after an 8-all draw. The two teams were very closely matched for playing strength, and no less than 10 games were drawn. Devon’s 3 wins, by Messrs Homer, Thompson and Ingham, were in the top half of the order, while Surrey’s were in the lower half, greater weighting being placed on the former. Devon now go on to the Semi-Final in June.

John Allen was drafted in as a last minute reserve and was Devon’s most out-graded player but had no trouble securing an early draw.

White: J. E. Allen (143). Black: S. Wrigley (158).

French Defence [C12]

1.d4 Nf6 2.Nc3 e6 3.e4 d5 4.Bg5 Bb4 5.e5 The opening has transposed into a classical French Defence. 5…h6 6.Bd2 Bxc3 7.bxc3 Ne4 8.Qg4 Kf8 (Black would have preferred to castle, but after 8…0–0 9.Bxh6) 9.Bd3 Nxd2 10.Kxd2 Qg5+ 11.Qxg5 hxg5 12.g4 b6 13.h3 c5 14.Nf3 c4 15.Be2 f6 16.h4 gxh4 17.Nxh4 Kf7 18.Nf3 Rxh1 19.Rxh1 Nd7 20.Rh8 Bb7 21.Rxa8 Bxa8 22.exf6 gxf6 and the position is very cramped with neither bishop being able to manoeuvre. 23.Nh4 Nf8 24.f4 Ng6 25.Ng2 Nf8 26.Ne3 Bc6 27.Bf3 b5 28.f5 Nh7 29.fxe6+ Kxe6 ½–½

In last week’s position, Michael Adams had to be content with a draw after Black spotted that if he played 1…Rg1 the rook could not be taken as it would leave him in stalemate, and after 2.Rf3 Rf1 the white rook can neither move away nor take its counterpart without leaving a stalemate.

This week’s 2-mover is the starter problem for the 2011 British Solving Championship. Work out White’s only move (the key) that leaves Black unable to avoid mate next move. Send the solution to Paul Valois, 14, Newton Park Drive, Leeds, LS7 4HH, together with a cheque or postal order for £3.00, made payable to British Chess Problem Society. Please provide an e-mail address if you have one. All entries should be postmarked no later than 31st July 2010. Don’t forget to mention that you saw the position in the WMN. After the closing date, all competitors will receive the solution and a free copy of The Problemist. Those who got the correct solution will also receive the Postal Round, comprising 8 positions of slightly greater solutions and variety. In due course, the best competitors from the postal round will be invited to the Final at Oakham School in February at which the prize fund will be about £1,000. Find out more about the competition at

White to mate in 2