Last night ECA played Holmes Chapel at home in the semi finals of the Charnley Cup. As expected we were heavily out graded but we went down fighting, losing 4-2 in the end.
1. Graham Ball 0-1 P Bennett (190)
Graham was gradually ground down as he took on Patrick's Pirc defence. In a typical Pirc game Graham set up a big pawn centre and Patrick systematically dismantled it.
2. Phil Ramsey 0-1 J Turner (182)
The problem with the Sicilian defence is that you often come up against someone's pet anti-Sicilian system which they have been playing for twenty years! So it was last night as John played an obscure system I had not encountered before and I fell into an opening trap which left me virtually lost after ten moves or so. Back to the books for me.
In the unlikely event that anyone is interested in this trap a similar game can be found here. I unwittingly followed it for 13 moves before playing the inferior 14. ... b5 and doing even worse than the Black player in that game.
3. Dave Newall 0.5-0.5 M Hancock (181)
Playing against another Pirc Defence Dave played solidly and had his draw offer accepted in the middle game.
4. Dave Broadbent 0-1 I Bates (170)
Ian played the Tarrasch against Dave's French Defence and a wild game ensued where Dave had an extra pawn but had his King stuck in the centre. Ian played accurately in the end to finish Dave off.
5. David Taylor 0.5 - 0.5 A Raeburn (157)
Playing his favourite Reti David played solidly, swapped off the pieces and got the draw.
6. Keven Holton 1-0 M Roberts (139)
Keven gave the Sicilian a try and it seemed to work - leaving him three pawns up in the middlegame. Keven duly converted the full point.
So as expected we struggled on the top boards and did better at the bottom. Sadly even if Dave B had won we would have lost the match due to their wins being on higher boards but still it was a good performance.
Now who fancies a trip to Altrincham next week?