It was an epic battle last night in the crunch relegation dogfight against the only team in Division 1 who we have a realistic chance of beating. It didn't start well for us though.
I was the first to finish. I'd had the better of the opening and was in creative mode until I over egged it and it backfired badly losing a piece. Tudor also started well, so much so that his opponent felt he had to execute a desperate piece sacrifice. Unfortunately a few moves later this seemed inspired when Tudor succumbed to a deadly counter attack.
Meanwhile Geoff was a pawn up but his position looked awkward and was relieved when his opponent agreed a draw. So, at the halfway stage we needed to win all of the remaining 3 games to bring home the bacon. At this point that looked unlikely and even a draw might be pushing it.
Steve had an advantage in material, first a pawn then an exchange but then the position became very open with attacking chances on both sides. Steve handled it well though and put together a decisive Q and N attack that finished things off. John's game looked pretty even to the untrained eye (like mine!) with his opponent having double R's on the open c file and an active Q but John had it all worked out and after a series of piece swapping he emerged 2 pawns up in a winning K and R ending.
This all meant that the match result was now all hanging on David's game. By this time both players were very low on time but with David a pawn up and a minute better on the clock. A draw offer came in which David may normally have been tempted to accept but in the interests of the team he soldiered on. And in a very tense finish he played it well under pressure to force a resignation. Well done David!
So we ended up winning a very exciting match and this rockets us off the bottom of the league. Survival in Division 1 (if we want it!) is now pretty much in our own hands.
1 - 0 John v James Heppell (160)
1 - 0 Steve v John Paul Taylor (156)
1/2 Geoff v Phil Cattermole (151)
1 - 0 David T v Geoff Laurence (149)
0 - 1 Tudor v Phil Colville (140)
0 - 1 Paul v Joachim Trier (136)
3.5 - 2.5