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Posts Tagged ‘West of England Championship’

Devon Reach National U-180 Final (13.06.2015.)

On Sunday, Devon met Lancashire at Worcester in the semi-final of the Inter-County Championship U-180 grade section. It was a close match that finished 8-8, with 4 wins to each team and 8 drawn games. As replays are not possible a tie-break rule called board count is invoked. Under this system the score of the bottom game is discounted, until a clear winner emerges. As Lancs won the game on Bd. 16, that win was eliminated, leaving Devon the winners, going through to the Final in Warwick on July 4th.  The details were: (Devon names 2nd in each pairing) 1. J. Cooper ½-½ Dr. J. Underwood. 2. S. Riley 1-0 Dr. D. Regis. 3. R. Newton 0-1 A. Brusey. 4. M. Whitehead ½-½ B. W. R. Hewson. 5. M. Parker 0-1 S. Martin. 6. P. Jackson 0-1 M. Abbott. 7. R. Ashcroft  ½-½ M. Shaw. 8. J. Lyth ½-½ W. Ingham. 9. A. Clarkson 1-0 M. Stinton-Brownbridge. 10. C. Rutlidge ½-½ K. P. Atkins. 11. P. Taylor 0-1 Dr. D.Toms. 12. R.Collins ½-½ O. E. Wensley. 13. D. Owen ½-½ C. J. Scott. 14. C. Fisher ½-½ P. Brooks. 15. W. O’Rourke 1-0 A. Kinder. 16. N. Jayawarna 1-0 V. Ramesh.

The ending to last week’s game was 1…Rxc3+ smashing open the White king’s position. If 2.b2xc3 then Ba3 is mate.

The Hungarian Laszlo Polgar was an assiduous collector of chess material that he used in the early tuition of his 3 daughters, Susan, Sofia and Judith. He later published this material in two large tomes, one on problem-like mates and another on winning middlegame combinations, the latter consisting of 4,158 positions in its 1,015 pages. From it, this position caught my eye, marked up only as “Aitken – Keffler: Newquai 1951”. This sparked a hunt for the actual game score from which the diagram was taken. I guessed it probably referred to a West of England Championship, held at the Penolver Hotel, Newquay at Easter 1951, but the problem was that neither Aitken nor Keffler played in that event. However, the Championship did return there 3 years later, and Aitken became joint champion with A. R. B. Thomas. Thomas was unbeaten but Aitken did lose one game – in Rd. 4 to Peter Yvon Keffler, then of Somerset. Polgar simply got the year wrong. The full game score, taken from the souvenir bulletin, was as follows:

White: J. M. Aitken. Black: P. Y. Keffler.

Sicilian Defence – Dragon Var. [B70]

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 d6 6.g3 g6 7.Bg2 Bg7 8.Nxc6 bxc6 9.e5 Nd7 10.Bxc6 Rb8 11.exd6 0–0 12.0–0 Ne5 13.dxe7 Qxe7 14.Bg2 Bg4 15.Qe1 Rfe8 16.Qe3 Qd7 17.Qf4 Bh3 18.Rd1 (see diagram). White is 2 pawns up and this seems a natural enough move as it (a) unpins the fianchetto bishop (b) develops the rook and (c) attacks Black’s queen. But it’s not quite as good as it looks, as Keffler now demonstated. Peter Keffler now lives in Suffolk, aged 92, and plays for the Braille Chess Association.

Black to play and win by force

Plus ca Change… (02.05.2015.)

During the recent West of England Championship I celebrated my Golden Wedding and was able to reassemble the whole wedding party, bridesmaids, Best Man and ushers, which set me thinking on the lines of how some things have changed and some haven’t. The French have a phrase – “Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose” – the more things change, the more they stay the same.

The same applies to the WECU Championship of half a century ago. It was held in Weymouth that year and attracted 94 players, divided into 10 smaller sections, including sections for ladies, girls, juniors, reserves A & B etc. Today, all entries are consolidated into just 3 sections, Open, Major and Minor, based on grade alone.

Many of those players involved at Weymouth have since moved on to the great chequerboard in the sky, of course, but a significant number are still very involved in the game, both as players and organisers. Trefor Thynne, Ivor Annetts, Brian Gosling, John Wheeler, Phil Meade and Leon Burnett, for example, all did well that year and have been very active in westcountry chess ever since. Scillonian David Ellis went on to become Champion the following year before emigrating to Perth, Australia, where he still conducts a chess column in his local paper. Burnett became Champion in 1966 and was still playing strongly in the recent Bristol Congress.

The winner of this game was awarded the Brigadier Morris Trophy for the best game by a junior in 1965. Today, David Shire is a noted problem composer – but what happened to the trophy is a mystery.

White: D. J. Shire. Black: B. G. Gosling. Sicilian Defence – Najdorf Variation.

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Bg5 e6 7.f4 Be7 8.Qf3 Qc7 9.0–0–0 Nbd7 10.g4 Rb8 11.Bxf6 Nxf6 12.g5 Nd7 13.Rg1 b5 14.a3 b4 15.axb4 Rxb4 16.Bh3 Nc5 17.f5 All moves so far are identical to the Hindle-Gligoric game at the 1965 Hastings Christmas Congress; the boys really knew the latest opening theory. 17…Qb7 Attacks b2 and prevents e5. For example, Gligoric played 17…Bd7 18.e5! opening up attacking possibilities, and the game went on… 18…d5 19.fxe6 fxe6 20.Nxe6 Bxe6 21.Bxe6 Nxe6 22.Nxd5 and Hindle won, something of a sensation at the time. 18.f6 Bf8 19.b3 Rg8 20.Rde1 gxf6 21.Nd5! Threatening a knight fork on f6. 21…exd5 22.exd5+ And now White proceeds to wreak havoc. 22…Kd8 23.Qxf6+ Kc7 24.Qxf7+ Kb6 25.Qxg8 Bxh3 26.Qxf8 Qc7 27.Nc6! Threatening Re7 1–0.

Last week’s Morphy game ended with a combination that is well-known because of its ingenuity but one that rarely occurs in practice. 1.Qa3+ Kg8 (if Ke8 then Qe8 mate) 2.Ne7+ Kf8 3.Ng6+ Kg8 4.Qf8+ Rxf8 5.Ke7 mate, known as a smothered mate, as the king is hemmed in by its own pieces, in this case the rooks.

Having indicated how rare it is in actual play, here is another example, incredibly also by Morphy – in the same year. Just repeat the drill.

White to play and win in 5

WECU Championship 2012 – Day 1 – Rds. 1 & 2

Under cloudless skies, and with the air like a refreshing cold white wine, the 67th West of England Championship and Congress got under way at 10 a.m. at the Royal Beacon Hotel, Exmouth. Inevitably there were a few minor hiccups just before the start but these were easily resolved and a hush of concentration quickly descended.   

What the Open may have lacked in quantity it made up in quality, the more so after GM Keith Arkell entered the day before, heading a number of quality players in the 180 – 200 range.

Bd. Open (Rd. 1)      
  White     Black
1 G. Bolt 0 1 K. C. Arkell
2 S. Berry 1 0 P. Helbig
3 A. Brusey ½ ½ R. McMichael
4 A. Therrien ½ ½ R. de Coverley
5 S. Greely 1 0 A. Richardson
6 B. W. Hewson 1 0 G. Taylor
7 S. Bartlett 0 1 P. Krzyzanowski
8 R. Thompson ½ ½ M. Shaw
        Byes:   Dilleigh
                  Littlejohns
  WECU Open Grd Club 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Tot.
1 K. C. Arkell 225 4NCL 1              
2 S. Bartlett 165 Newquay 0              
3 S. Berry 217 Wimbledon 1              
4 G. Bolt 182 Exeter 0              
5 A. W. Brusey 176 Teignmouth ½              
6 R. de Coverley 175 Bourne End ½              
7 S. Dilleigh 183 Horfield 1              
8 S. Greeley 170 Downend 1              
9 P. Helbig 179 Bath 0              
10 B. W. Hewson 186 Tiverton 1              
11 P. Krzyzanowski 185 Yeovil 1              
12 D. Littlejohns 174 Taunton ½              
13 R. McMichael 198 King’s Head ½              
14 A. Richardson 192 Newcastle/Lyne 0              
15 M. Shaw 150e Exmouth ½              
16 G. Taylor 166 Gloucester 0              
17 A. Therrien 196 Worthing ½              
18 R. Thompson 185 N. Abbot ½              
                       
Bd Major (Rd. 1)      
  White     Black
1 R. Bryant 1 0 I. Annetts
2 B. Gosling 0 1 A. Clarke
3 M. Abbott 1 0 M. Wilson
4 T. Chapman 1 W. Ingham
5 A. Billings 1 0 M. Worrall
6 G. Body 0 1 O. Wensley
7 M. Harris 1 0 J. Morgan
8 K. Atkins ½ ½ N. Dicker
9 R. Gamble ½ ½ S. Stone
10 A. Richards 1 0 A. Price
11 S. K. Dean ½ ½ C. Sellwood
12 D. Lawrence 0 1 A. Hibbitt
13 J. Nyman 1 0 G. Parfett
14        
15        
  WECU Major Grd Club 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Tot.
1 M. V. Abbott 170 Exmouth 1              
2 K. P. Atkins 146 Tiverton ½              
3 I. S. Annetts 152 Tiverton 0              
4 A. Billings 165 N. Abbot 1              
5 G. Body 147 Exeter 0              
6 R. Bryant 171 Telepost 1              
7 T. Chapman 149 Southampton ½              
8 A. Clarke 170 Torquay 1              
9 S. K. Dean 157 Seaton ½              
10 N. Dicker 160 Glastonbury ½              
11 R. Gamble 160 Derby ½              
12 B. G. Gosling 150 Exmouth 0              
13 M. Harris 162 Newcastle/Lyme 1              
14 A. Hibbitt 156 Grendel 1              
15 W. Ingham 166 Teignmouth 1              
16 D. Lawrence 134 King’s Head 0              
17 J. Morgan 147   0              
18 R. Morgan 152 Glastonbury ½              
19 J. Nyman 156 King’s Head 1              
20 G. Parfett 120 Athenaeum 0              
21 A. Price 139 Leamington 0              
22 C. Reeves 146 Truro ½              
23 A. Richards 142 Cheltenham 1              
24 M. Roberts 145 Holmes Chapel ½              
25 E. Sandercock 147   ½              
26 C. Sellwood 139 Camborne ½              
27 S. Stone 144 Sidmouth ½              
28 O. E. Wensley 165 Exmouth 1              
29 M. Wilson 149 Wigston 0              
30 M. Worrall 148 Taunton 0              
Bd Minor (Rd. 1)      
  White     Black
1 H. Welch 1 0 K. Alexander
2 J. Morrison 1 0 A. Fraser
3 R. Waters 0 1 D. R. Rogers
4 D. Woodruff 1 0 M. French
5 R. Hood ½ ½ A. Wiggins
6 N. Mills bye 1 S. Billett
7 J. O’Grady 1 0 N. Tidy
8 T. Crouch ½ ½ M. Cox
9 C. Gardiner 0 1 J. Carr
10 G. Patching 0 1 M. Huba
11 M. Kaye 0 1 P. Foster
12 H. Herschmann 0 1 P. Errington
13 G. Andrews 1 0 T. Dengler
14 R. Cox 0 1 I. Blencowe
15 D. Burt 1 0 R. Whittington
  WECU Minor Grd Club 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Tot.
1 K. Alexander 137 Tiverton 0              
2 G. Andrews 127 Railways 1              
3 S. Billett 108 Portsmouth 1              
4 I. Blencowe 125 Gloucester 1              
5 D. Burt 121 Poole 1              
6 J. Carr  99 Portsmouth 1              
7 M. Cox 105 Southampton ½              
8 R. Cox  89 Southampton 0              
9 T. Crouch 129 King’s Head ½              
10 T. Dengler  93 Truro 0              
11 P. Errington 129 Bournemouth 1              
12 P. Foster 128 Medway 1              
13 A. Fraser 113 Beckenham 0              
14 M. French 112 Millfield 0              
15 C. Gardiner 129 Newmarket 0              
16 H. Herschemann 105   0              
17 R. Hood 112 Isca ½              
18 M. Huba 115 King’s Head 1              
19 M. Kaye  96 Weymouth 0              
20 N. Mills 132 Yeovil ½              
21 J. O’Grady 107 N. Abbot 1              
22 G. Patching  55 BCA 0              
23 D. Rogers 136 Exmouth 1              
24 Dr. R. Ryan  99 Seaton ½              
25 N. Tidy 130 Teigmouth 0              
26 A. Wang 106 Cardiff ½              
27 R. Waters 113 Taunton 0              
28 H. Welch 115 Seaton 1              
29 R. Whittington  85 Exeter Jun. 0              
30 A. Wiggins 134 Redditch ½              
31 T. Woodward 137 Trowbridge ½              
32 J. Morrison 136 Tiverton 1              
33 Woodruff 124 Keynsham 1              

   Rd. 1 Open games here: http://www.chessdevon.co.uk/HTML/games/current/wecu121/base.htm 

   

The opening moments

Blinded by the light: late entry GM Keith Arkell faces Graham Bolt.

Berry vs Helbig on Bd. 2.

Former Exeter Junior, Alex Therrien, facing Roger de Coverley.

Hewson v Taylor & Bartlett v Kryzyzanowski.

"Newcomer" Meyrick Shaw (Exmouth) moves against Robert Thompson.

The draw for Rd. 2 was as follows, and finished thus.

Bd. Open (Rd. 2)      
  White     Black
1 K. C. Arkell 1 0 S. Greely
2 P. Krzyzanowski 0 1 S. Berry
3 S. Dilleigh ½ ½ B. W. Hewson
4 R. McMichael ½ ½ D. Littlejohns
5 M. Shaw 0 1 A. Therrien
6 R. de Coverley 1 0 R. Thompson
7 A. Richardson 1 0 A. W. Brusey
8 G. Taylor 0 1 G. Bolt
9 P. Helbig ½ ½ S. Bartlett

   

Arkell sacrificed a piece in order to break open the enemy king’s position, after which the task was relatively simple. Second seed Berry, on the other hand, had a more difficult ending where he had rook, bishop and pawn for his opponent’s queen; a complicated position in which his opponent eventually ran out of time.  

Rd. 2 Open games here http://www.chessdevon.co.uk/HTML/games/current/wecu122/base.htm

In the Major, only 3 were left on 2/2 at the end of Day 1, namely Wensley, Harris & Bill Ingham. The scores were as follows:-

Bd Major (Rd. 2)      
  White     Black
1 O. Wensley 1 0 R. Bryant
2 M. Harris 1 0 M. Abbott
3 A. Clarke ½ ½ J. Nyman
4 W. Ingham 1 0 A. Richards
5 A. Hibbitt ½ ½ A. Billings
6 N. Dicker 1 0 C. Reeves
7 M. Roberts ½ ½ R. Gamble
8 S. Stone ½ ½ S. K. Dean
9 R. Morgan 0 1 K. Atkins
10 T. Chapman 1 0 C. Sellwood
11 A. Price ½ ½ E. Sandercock
12 I. Annetts 0 1 G. Body
13 J. Morgan 0 1 B. Gosling
14 M. Wilson 1 0 D. Lawrence
15 M. Worrall 1 0 G. Parfett

 In the Minor, the leaders going in to Rd. 3 were Dave Rogers, Garth Andrews and Pauls Errington and Foster.

Bd Minor (Rd. 2)      
  White     Black
1 M. Huba ½ ½ J. Morrison
2 D. R. Rogers 1 0 D. Burt
3 P. Errington 1 0 H. Welch
4 P. Foster 1 0 S. Billett
5 J. Carr 0 1 G. Andrews
6 I. Blencowe ½ ½ J. O’Grady
7 T. Crouch ½ ½ D. Woodruff
8 T. Woodward 1 0 R. Hood
9 A. Wiggins 1 0 R. Ryan
10 A. Fraser 1 0 G. Patching
11 M. Cox 1 0 N. Mills
12 M. French ½ ½ A. Wang
13 K. Alexander 1 0 M. Kaye
14 N. Tidy 1 0 R. Cox
15 T. Dengler 0 1 C. Gardiner
16 R. Whittington 1 0 R. Waters

   

The Major Section along one side of the hall.

...and the Minor Section on the other side

Keith Arkell seems happy with his prospects.

Top 3 boards in Rd. 2 of the Major .

Meyrick Shaw starts against Alex Therrien.