On Wednesday night ECA had their chance to avenge their defeat from the week before. This time we had Dave N back in our ranks so we were at least the rating favourites.
1. Phil 1- 0 Keven
Keven tried to lure me into accepting his Morra gambit but I declined and we ended up with a typical open Sicilian position where Keven had more space and I had the extra central pawn. Things were pretty even until Keven decided to sacrifice his Knight in return for some nasty threats to my King. However I successfully repulsed his attack and Keven resigned rather than let me start having some fun!
2. John 1 - 0 Dave B
Dave bravely allowed John to play his favourite Queen's Gambit Declined Exchange Variation but regretted it when he fell into a trap on move 8 that cost him two pawns. John didn't give Dave a look-in from that point.
3. Dave N 1 - 0 Nick
Playing against Dave's Dutch Defence Nick decided to go for all out attack and castle Queenside. This allowed Dave to break up the pawn structure around Nick's King and pick up a couple of pawns. It was all downhill from there for Nick.
4. Tudor 1 - 0 David T
The return of the swindler! Tudor was outplayed in the opening and David had nice pressure against Tudor's Kingside and Centre. David won a couple of pawns but drifted into time trouble and snatched one pawn too many, allowing a discovered check and mate.
Here is Tudor's version of what happened:
"Just to explain what happened in extra time last night. Score was ECA 3 ECB 2 . I was losing rather easily to David [Taylor]. David had outplayed me in the opening [I failed to work out over the board what to do against his Queen's Indian [I think]. I was forced into a speculative pawn sacrifice that seemed to give some complications. David continued to grind me down until I was forced to start making more speculative offers of pawns.
The stadium had emptied as we slugged out extra time, and David in time trouble decided to save time by helping himself to a third freebie pawn. It was my last futile swindle attempt but it led to a discovered check and undeserved mate. But I can't replicate this masterpiece as we sort of didn't write the score down in the time scramble.
Learning: never resign a lost game!"
5. Edwin 0 - 1 Paul B
Edwin struggled to cope with the activity of Paul's pieces and eventually lost the exchange to a nasty Knight fork. Edwin battled on gamely but couldn't save the endgame.
6. Andy B 0 - 1 Keith
Andy played his normal swashbuckling chess and rapidly won a couple of pawns. However he managed to lose the exchange and then ended up with a Bishop against 3 connected pawns. The pawns prevailed!
Next up Wilmslow away on Monday.