Sunday, 7 December 2014

ECA 2 Holmes Chapel 4

Considering that we lost 5.5 - 0.5 to Holmes Chapel a few weeks ago and John was away we did not hope for many points this time. However the games were all close and we were only one win from a draw in the end.

1. Steve 0 - 1 J Blackburn (190)

Steve used the Dutch defence again but this time there was no quick win. His opponent created pressure on the Queenside and won a pawn. Steve created pressure on the Kingside but his opponent played carefully and Steve eventually gave up a Rook for two Bishops and couldn't hold the endgame.

2. Phil 1 - 0 J Turner (181)

My first win of the season! We played a symmetrical English which stayed symmetrical for about 12 moves! I gave up a Knight for a Bishop with the plan of a pawn break in the centre but then decided against opening the board for his Bishops so was just left slightly worse. However the endgame was complicated and in the end my opponent lost on time in a drawn position.
3. Dave N 0 - 1 P Bennett (173)

Dave achieved a promising Benoni type position but in the end get crushed by his opponents advancing pawns.

4. Tudor 1 - 0 M Hancock (178)

Here are Tudor's comments on this game:

How a loss became a win

I lost the opening, played at speed. Sort of Q pawn with Bishop fianchetto on b7. Black hoovered  up my Queenside, winning a pawn and strong position. If I had found reasonable moves I would have near three hours of grind before losing. 

I found a move that gives chances. If necessary, risk worsening your position to get chances. One line created chances, including a win of an exchange by me, through dodgy pawn advances in centre, which even then gave black more positional and material advantage, three pawns for exchange, with passed pawns if the game reached the endgame.  My Q, Kn, R vs Q, B and Kn plus three extra pawns. Black hadn't seen the loss of exchange, but I suspect Fritz would have, and would have encouraged black to accept the loss of exchange.

But my R had penetrated the black defences and was trapped on the 8th rank. A black central pawn was advancing, but there were a few ways of setting up many checks, some of which lost because of a rook capture of Kn winning Queen only supported by the Kn.

First time I tried this, Black saw and avoided trap. Next time the check seemed desperation by me, as it left the black central pawn threatening to Queen, and Q threatening back rank checkmate.  

One 'trick' I wanted to make was to invite  the Q move to stop the checks and make the move look as attractive as possible. Also, if he didn't play it, I would have picked off the advanced pawn with some drawing chances. He did. So in one move, a Black win changed to a loss of Queen and Knight for Rook, and with my Queen I was able to stop the pawn Queening.


5. David T 0 - 1 I Bates (160)

David used his "Fort Knox" French Defence once again to good effect and achieved a solid middlegame. However he was eventually ground down in the endgame.

6. Alan 0 - 1 B Scattergood (156)

Alan used his solid London System to get a playable middlegame. However he lost the exchange in the last middlegame and this was enough to lose the game.

So a solid performance we should take encouragement from. We are fighting well at this level and not being outclassed.

Thursday, 27 November 2014

ECB 1.5 Marple B 4.5 (Wed 26th Nov)

Here we go, first time blog for ECB so hopefully this will work.

We knew Marple B had been whitewashed 6-0 by Denton B last week and we outgraded them on every board, so surely this was match was going to be a stroll?  Unfortunately, there was a turn up on virtually every board.....

1.  Tudor 0 - 1 Andy Jenkins (130)

This was a real see-saw of a game.  Tudor made a quiet start against a Colle but then went up an exchange and was on a charge.  Andy then some how managed to gain the initiative and even missed a mate but then went on to win a close end game when he was just able to promote a pawn first.

2.  David 1/2 - 1/2 Chris Baker (129)

It looked like David's English opening was doing well as he was a piece for 2 pawns up and had the possibilities for winning on time (for a change!).  The game then became quite tactical in time trouble with Chris finding a fork to win a queen and then David finding a pin to win back the queen but losing a piece in the process.  He held on though and a draw was agreed.

3.  Keven 0 - 1 Terry Cowling (127)

Kev set up a solid system against the Catalan but then overlooked a move which gave Terry the initiative and he went on to finish it off well.

4.  Alan 0 - 1 David Preen (125)

Alan had a reasonable middle game position but allowed his opponent to swap off queens and then unleash an unstoppable queen side pawn storm.

5.  Bill 0 - 1 Jeff Barlow (124)

Bill didn't get much play from his normally reliable Caro Kann and eventually succumbed after putting up a good fight.

6.  Paul 1 - 0 Trefor Thomas (100)

In terrible form (not won for the B team for 2 years and lost my last match after being 22.7 pawns up according to Fritz !)I managed to get a bit more activity against a Petrov defence and won a rook ending with an extra 2 pawns.

So, all in all, that was a result that not even Mystic Meg could have predicted.  But we'll bounce back from this and I'm sure we'll have a strong second half to the season.  See you next year!

Thursday, 20 November 2014

East Cheshire A 2 Stockport A 4

Another tough game for ECA at home to Stockport A but we sure made a fight of it. Here is how it went:

1. Steve 1 - 0 P Siddal (191)

A 9 move win as Black for Steve. What? Here are Steve's notes:

1. d4 e6
2. c4 f5
3. Nc3 Nf6
4. Qc2?! (Ok I am out of the book, no idea why he played this.)
4. ... Be7
5. e4 (so, that's why! Has he got some patzer trap for me?)
5. ... f x e (what else?)
6. f3 (OK the penny has dropped, shall I play e3 to confound his plan? No need because if I castle fxe looks poor as I can play Ng4, with maybe e5 first) so   
6. ... O-O
7. Be3 (looks a bit iffy as the B is not protected but he was stuck for a good move. I need to avoid exf as he will retake with the g pawn)  so I develop ... 
7. ... Nc6
8. O-O-O (he wants a fight but his pieces can't develop easily and I can consolidate my pawn advantage), so ...
8. ... d5 (also preventing his d5 break and he is a pawn down and of course he can't play his next move!)
9.fxe?? Ng4 0-1

If he defends the B with his Q, I take with the N and then pin the Q to the K with Bg5; if he moves the B my N wins a R via Nf2; he cannot defend the B with his R as it leaves his B on f1 en prise after NxB, RxNch followed by Bg5, pinning the R.

I think he was a bit demoralised so elected to resign. Strange game!

2. John 0.5 - 0.5 A Reeve (186)

John had Andy on the defensive for most of the game but Andy defended well and after a certain amount of suffering got the draw.

Here are John's comments:
f5 speculative but if it works, gives up e5 but splits black forces, best prob Bxf5 then Ng5. After that I am doing well but he keeps on finding saving moves. He makes a mistake with Qf6 and I miss the lovely 23 Qh4!! Winning. After that it peters out.

3. Phil 0 - 1 P Cawley (185)

This game was similar to my previous one. I failed to equalise out of the opening, lost the exchange and then finally in the endgame got some pressure against his advanced pawns. My opponent elected to give back the exchange to win a pawn and I missed a simple perpetual check, going down in the Queen endgame. The moral is: stay alert, in most games an opportunity will present itself at some point.

4. Dave N 0 - 1 M Taylor (171)

Here are Dave's thoughts: "Played a difficult opening and early middle game pretty accurately as my opponent had lots of threats which I successfully countered. Then just as I had opened the position to my advantage I fell for a one move cheapo which lost the exchange but worse my position fell to pieces."

5. Tudor 0 - 1 D Toole (171)

Tudor ended up with an undeveloped Queenside on the Black side of a King's Indian and David seized the open e File and won with a Kingside attack.

6. Jim 0.5 - 0.5 M Tunstall (159)

A solid start for Jim on his first appearance for the A team. Despite ending up with a passive position he kept plugging away and did enough for a draw.

So, as expected, life in the A division is proving to be tough but we a battling hard and hopefully learning. I might even end my losing streak soon!

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Holmes Chapel 5.5 ECA 0.5

Ouch! After a fantastic start to the season with a win against Chorlton, ECA were brought back down to earth with a bump against a very strong Holmes Chapel team. Boxing with the big guys ain't easy.

1. J Blackburn (UG) 1 - 0 John

In John's words: "Depressed. Completely outplayed J Blackburn. Gave up a pawn for huge position. Won back the pawn with won game. Missed a cheapo as time got short. Also clock was misbehaving."

2. J Turner (181) 1 - 0 Phil

Despite losing another game I did actually enjoy the latter stages of this one. My opponent had a slight pull out of the opening and I ended up giving up a pawn to get a playable position. However I managed to activate my pieces and ended up in a Bishop ending where my Bishop was more active. However I was still a pawn down and moved rather too quickly in the mutual time trouble, missing a simple draw.

3. P Bennett (173) 0.5 - 0.5 Tudor

Tudor seemed to be under pressure against the King's Indian but has lots of experience in these types of positions and managed to hold the draw.

4. M Hancock (178) 1 - 0 David T

David seemed to survive the opening with a solid French Defence but eventually succumbed to the persistent pressure.

5. A Raeburn (160) 1 - 0 Alan

Alan's solid London System achieved a playable middlegame but eventually his opponent's strength told.

6. I Bates (160) 1 - 0 Bill

Here is Bill's report:

"I lost in severe time pressure which is as fair a way as any, having used so much of my time defending.

As Black I used the Caro-Kann defence and my opponent allowed the exchange variation bringing his Queen out very early on to f3 which I hadn't encountered before. This allowed him a strong attack from the outset; however I successfully defended this (using up most of my time) and then counter attacked surprisingly strongly in the middle game. He attacked my KNP on my Kingside where my King was as I simultaneously attacked his QBP on his Queenside where his King was. Mine proved stronger and he abandoned his attack - temporarily!

This changed the game and led to exchanges from where a draw seemed likely. Being much more adventurous now I saw an opportunity to surprise him by exchanging my Bishop for 4 of his Pawns.

This left an end/middle game of 2 Rooks each with 6 Pawns to me v Knight + 2 Pawns to White. Unfortunately my Pawns were only on the 2nd or 3rd rank which wasn't an immediate help, however they were all linked.

He renewed his attack on my KNP which I thought was going to fall and didn't defend it well enough the 2nd time.

Without losing any material I was down to 1 min and in perpetual check. I still naively was thinking of victory when with 10sec on my clock I moved my King out of check deliberately onto a square - which then allowed an immediate checkmate. I didn't even see it when he moved!

Well done to my opponent how persevered with his own attack without offering me a draw.

Had I stayed in perpetual check I think he would have accepted that.

Moral: Fischer time doesn't allow thinking time - it only allows a continuous rapidplay."

So a tough match out of the way. There will be slightly easier matches ahead (hopefully!)

Saturday, 15 November 2014

Sale 2.5 ECC 2.5 (Mon 10th November)

A well-contested draw with some interesting individual games in Monday’s away game to Sale.

On board 3, Geoff seemed to be in decent shape, but then his opponent managed to swing round for a kingside attack, and with queen and knight suddenly bearing down on h2, Geoff was forced to resign.

On board 4, with the game moving towards a bishop-and-pawn endgame, Ian considered pushing on for a win for the good of the team, but without enough of an edge, a draw was agreed soon after.

Debuting for ECC on board 2, Kieran played a deceptively quiet opening as black before striking out with g5. Soon Kieran had a dangerous-looking pawn pushing on on both sides of the board, and even with some minor pieces still on the board, it was too many plates to keep spinning for his opponent, who resigned. Great stuff Kieran.

I was playing a previously strong but currently rusty opponent on board 1, who allowed me to win a pawn and the initiative a little cheaply in a QGA. I was able to build an attack on the f7 square with my knights active and so win further material, and though his suddenly well-coordinated pieces found a bit of worrying counterplay, I was able to swap off and force home my extra pawns in the end.

With the draw secured, this left Keith’s game still to finish. But his opponent had built a small advantage carefully and well throughout the game despite some obstinate defence from Keith, and in a Q+N v R+B+N position, with no easy way of getting some crucial piece co-ordination, his opponent’s queen starting mopping up pawns and advancing his own and Keith reluctantly resigned.

Well played all!

ECC 1 Altrincham 4 (Weds 5th November)

No shame last week in a reverse to an Altrincham team who played well and seem strong candidates to win the division this year (though I reserve the right to reuse that line for our next loss!)

On Board 4, Edwin seemed to be sliding gently towards a draw, but with no Hamlet moment materialising this time alas, a blunder at a critical point was terminal for him. In Ian’s game, without much apparent counterplay and two pawns down in a late middlegame, Ian made what seemed a slightly cheeky draw offer. His opponent refused, but Ian made serious inroads in the endgame, and his opponent breathed a huge sigh of relief as Ian finally had to resign.

In Keith’s game:

"An early swap off of queens forced by my opponent weakened my development and defences immediately and put me on the back foot. By this time I was one pawn down and struggling to develop my remaining pieces. His development of his two rooks and knight caused me all sorts of problems resulting in my knight being trapped alongside my king for which I had no answer with a potential mate looming. No choice but to resign. A good strong player which belied his current grading."

As ever, mine and Bill’s slightly more measured/plodding playing pace meant our games were last to finish.

My game ebbed and flowed, with an early queen swap off allowing me to gang up on and win a doubled pawn, from which point he got the better of the middle and endgame, and in the end, short on time and with his extra pawn on the 6th rank, I was glad to put the handbrake on with a well-placed bishop and slink off with a draw.

Bill's opponent played a strong opening, and Bill chose to cede a pawn with a view to freeing up his slightly tangled position. His opponent won a piece but couldn't hang onto it, and with his opponent still in the ascendancy, Bill wriggled very nicely to come away with a draw.

Friday, 7 November 2014

ECA 4 Chorlton 2

ECA had their first match of the season on Wednesday night. Chorlton are one of the teams we might be able to score points against. Would we be able to get our season off to a flying start?

1. Phil 0-1 P Olbison (181)

As Black I achieved a comfortable position out of the opening but then dithered about trying to find a concrete plan. Should I try to create some counterplay on the Queenside or try to exploit the holes on the Kingside? In the end I achieved neither as my opponent managed to open the f file, triple his heavy pieces on it and win material. I am settling well into my new role as cannon fodder.

2. John 0.5-0.5 C Vassiliou (176)

John once again encountered a Dutch and didn't seem to get any advantage out of the opening. When his opponent offered a draw there was no reason not to accept it.

3. Dave N 1-0 R Doney (182)

Possibly Dave's best game for a while. In Dave's words "I won a piece for 2 pawns in the opening then as you saw I voluntarily gave up my fianchettoed bishop to leave him with tripled pawns on an open file. He attacked my King but later in the game I gave up a Rook for his well placed Knight nullifying all his attacking chances and leaving my pieces all active and his totally disconnected. A few moves later he was either getting mated or giving up more material and he chose to let me mate him."

4. Tudor 1-0 D Owen (163)

A fantastic positional masterpiece from Tudor. In a sort of Queen's Gambit Declined Exchange Variation Tudor executed a perfect minority attack, creating pawn weaknesses on the Queenside and steadily pressurising them. His opponent tried to create Kingside counterplay but in the end Tudor had a central passed pawn and a Kingside attack of his own. His opponent lost on time while trying to work out the complications.

5. David T 1-0 A Beresford (156)

David wheeled out his trusted French Defence and achieved a solid position out of the opening. His opponent then allowed David to win a Rook. In David's words: "I missed the opportunity to take another piece.  I got very anxious about the amount of time I had left, so I played very conservatively and concentrated on not making a blunder (just missed stalemate when I queened that pawn!).  Fritz found several other blunders of course....." David duly forced checkmate with several minutes still on his clock.

6. Alan 0.5-0.5 K Khockar (121)

Alan didn't seem to achieve anything out of the opening and eventually accepted a draw offer in an inferior position.

So 4 - 2 to ECA! Apart from the captain ECA seem to be firing on all cylinders. Holmes Chapel will provide a stern test next week but we will not go down without a fight.

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Stockport 4 East Cheshire 2

East Cheshire A kicked off their season on Tuesday night with a tricky Charnley Cup tie against Stockport. With six of their seven strongest players in the team this was not going to be an easy night. However, we had a decent team as well. Could we create an upset?

1. A Smith (204) 0.5-0.5 John

John was relieved to get his favoured White pieces, possibly less so to see a Dutch on the board. However, careful play allowed him to reach an endgame only a doubled pawn down and with time running low for both sides a draw was agreed.

2. P Cawley (185) 0.5-0.5 Steve

This transposed into a sort of Classical Dutch. Steve was under pressure in the middlegame but defended carefully and in the end achieved a well earned draw.

P Siddall (191) 1-0 Phil

This was a typical game against a stronger opponent. I was outplayed strategically in the middlegame, ending up with a collapsing position and my time running out. I decided to do the noble thing and resign although the post mortem unveiled a way I could have complicated things for a while. 

A Reeve (186) 1-0 Tudor

Playing against an English system that his opponent knew inside out Tudor fought bravely but in the end the complications went against him.

D Toole (171) 0-1 Alan

Alan "nerves of steel" Stokes ended up in a passive position against Dave's favoured King's Indian. However Dave spent too much time trying to press home his advantage and Alan calmly continued making good moves while Dave ran out of time. Well done Alan!

M Taylor (171) 1-0 Paul

Mike seemed to have a good system against Paul's Benko Gambit. Paul managed to create some activity on the Kingside but Mike's passed A pawn won the day before Paul could create enough threats.

So Stockport win 4-1. A respectable result from a very tough match.

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Club News Item

Social evening on Wed 1st October

This will follow the usual format of a rapidplay tournament with an interval for drinks and light food.  Free for all East Cheshire club members!  Non-members by invitation only (cost £5).
Club re-opening

The Club will re-open for the 2014-2015 season on Wednesday 3rd September

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

ECA 6 Denton B 0

We needed a big win last night to give us a chance of winning the league and thanks to a weakened Denton B team and a bit of luck we got the perfect result. Now it is down to Denton B to score some game points against Marple next week and we could just stay top.

1. John 1-0 D Boulden (152)

John played his normal Bg5 system against the Nimzo-Indian and a strange position ensued where both players castled Queenside. John's opponent blundered a pawn and then the exchange and then ended up a Rook down but with some nasty threats. John gave up his Queen to stave off the attack but had two Rooks and a Bishop to compensate. After a few shaky moments John finished things off with a mating attack.

2. Phil 1-0 D Holt (136)

I played a decent opening and ended up with a French Defence type position. I created some pressure on the Queenside but then completely missed a move which should have won a piece for Dave. While I was trying to squirm out of my predicament Dave seem to panic a bit at the thought of winning and let me off the hook. I then ground out the endgame.

3. Steve 1-0 P Boyd (128)

This was a very smooth grind for Steve, winning a pawn out of the opening and then gradually increasing his advantage for the rest of the game.

4. Dave N 1-0 I Urwin (121)

Dave opponent played a sort of Wing Gambit against the Sicilian but Dave kept hold of the extra pawn and then won tactically in the middle game.

5. Keven 1-0 E Lesnik (108)

Keven won a pawn early on and smoothly ground out the endgame.

6. Tudor 1-0 D Cook (107)

Tudor achieved one of his favourite positions with a Queenside pawn storm against his opponent's King. He managed to open lines against the King forcing resignation.

So a successful season for ECA, finishing either 1st or 2nd depending on Marple C's result next week. Thanks to the addition of Steve we have a decent front line and should not be fearful of the A division. Gulp.

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

ECA 3.5 Altrincham 2.5

ECA beat a strong Altrincham team last night.

Here is the scorecard:

1. Y Kolodiy (168) 0.5 - 0.5 John
2. R Clucas (158) 0 - 1 Phil
3. K Lockett (155) 0 - 1 Steve
4. M Whalley (149) 1 - 0 Keven
5. N Lowe (135) 0 - 1 Dave N
6. B McCartney (130) 1 - 0 Tudor

Tudor's game finished first. Tudor lost a piece but had some vague attacking changes. However his opponent defended carefully and Tudor ran out of attacking material.

Keven had a cramped game with a backward e pawn and ultimately had to resign.

Dave had a nice win when his opponent wasted a lot of moves in the opening and left his King in the centre. In Dave's words: "My opponent resigned on move 20 having played very passively against the Colle and his king was stuck in the middle with his kings bishop and rook still not having moved and unable to move without losing more material."

John drew a sharp game where he gambited a pawn for a promising position but then misplayed it and had to fight for a draw.

This left the match at 2.5 - 1.5 to Altrincham. Dave takes over the commentary from here:

"This being my only home match of the season (I live 5 mins from Altrincham) I had decided to stay and watch until all the games had finished. With 2 games to go it did not look good! Alti were 2.5 to 1.5 up with Phil and Steve still playing on boards 2 and 3 respectively.

Steve's was the easier game to assess as he was in a rook and pawn ending, a pawn down, and short of time. Some drawing chances but no prospect of a win. Phil's game was more difficult to come to a conclusion about (unclear!!!). Both players were short of time in a sharp position. Phils opponent seemed to be applying most of the pressure but Phil was countering accurately.

Steve's opponent then contrived to voluntarily swap off the rooks in a position where he was losing his extra pawn and leaving Steve with the more active king. John Reed left at this stage and we were agreed that with best play it was now a drawn game. How wrong we were! Steve applied pressure and his opponent crumbled allowing Steve's king to mop up pawns and a pawn race ensued with Steve queening and then then playing very accurately to prevent his opponent queening.

Over to Phil's game with both players having about 3 mins left on their clocks. Major pieces were exchanged and Phil's opponent offered a draw which was quickly refused as now it was Phil applying pressure. Thinking for 30 seconds over a move when you have only 3 min left is not a good idea (trust me I know!) and down went white's flag leaving East Cheshire winners 3.5 to 2.5. A fantastic result and such an exciting finish that I had to get a bottle of wine to take home to celebrate."

Thursday, 27 February 2014

ECA 3.5 Altrincham 2.5

After a couple of tough games against Marple teams we were hoping for a slightly easier match against Altrincham. However they fielded their strongest players on the top four boards making for a close match despite them defaulting on board 6.

1. Phil 0.5 - 0.5 Y Kolodiy (168)

In about four games against Yaroslav I have managed one draw so I was not looking forward to this one.

I played an obscure system against the Four Pawns Attack in the King's Indian and ended up with a cramped but solid position. I managed to exchange off most of the pieces but still was a bit cramped when Yaroslav allowed me to activate my Queen and assume the initiative. However, short of time as normal, I couldn't find a win and so took the draw that the team needed to tie the match.

2. Steve 0.5 - 0.5 R Clucas (158)

Steve played the Grand Prix Attack against the Sicilian and surprised all of us with an early f5 to open the Kingside. However his opponent defended carefully and ended up a clear pawn up with a dominating position. Steve managed to cause some problems though and did enough to get the draw as his opponent was short on time.

3. Tudor 0 - 1 K Lockett (155)

Tudor allowed his opponent an ideal English set up with pressure down the b file and Karl eventually won the b pawn and then the endgame.

4. Dave N 1 - 0 M Whalley (149)

Dave's opponent had the temerity to play the Dutch against our leading expert in it. In Dave's words:

My opponent played the Dutch so I played a prepared line in the Staunton Gambit. it was all pretty much over in 10 moves as black position was already horrible and he had to give up a piece after 15 moves. He then defended heroically and at one point I had the horrible feeling I was going to be left with king, knight and bishop v king but in the end I was queening a pawn and with a whole minute left on my clock he resigned.

5. Keven 0.5 - 0.5 D Hughes (124)

Keven played a Modern Defence / Sicilian hybrid and never seemed to be in any trouble but didn't find any winning chances.

6. A N Other 1 - 0 Default

Monday, 17 February 2014

Marple 3.5 East Cheshire 2.5

East Cheshire met Marple last night in the Charnley Cup semi-finals. With Marple having the strongest squad in the league and us having a couple of players missing this was never going to be easy! Here is what happened.

1. A Longson (216) 1-0 Phil

I avoided theory by playing an obscure type of Modern defence. Alex didn't punish my strange moves and I emerged from the opening with a decent fighting position. Alex gave up a pawn to increase the pressure and I started to go astray as I got low on time. Alex got his pawn back and then won a pawn and ground me down in the endgame.

2. J Bentley (205) 0.5 - 0.5 John

John had to face the Benko gambit but played solidly to achieve a good position. His opponent gave up an exchange to complicate things and in the end John settled for a draw by repetition.

3. A Walton (199) 0.5 - 0.5 Dave N

Dave seemed to have the better of a Dutch Defence, having the Bishop pair in exchange for some shattered pawns.

4. N Livesey (147) 0.5 - 0.5 Keven

Keven played the solid French Exchange and seemed to achieve a draw without too much difficulty.

5. S Hewitt (166) 0-1 Paul

Sean used a closed system against Paul's Sicilian. He seemed to get some pressure on the Kingside but Paul defended carefully and eventually won the exchange and then the game.

6. A Jenkins (127) 1-0 Nick

Nick wasn't sure how best to meet the Old Indian Defence and rapidly ended up in an inferior position. He gave up a pawn for some play but was always struggling in the one.

So an amazing result against a very strong team. Especially well done to the middle four boards who all scored against stronger opponents.

Next up is a slightly easier match - home to Altrincham next week.

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Marple 3 ECA 3

I think we were all expecting a tough match on Monday and we were not disappointed.

Here is what happened:

1. John 0.5 - 0.5 S Hegarty (182)

Sarah allowed the dangerous Marshall Gambit and John built up a dominating position with a sequence of accurate moves. However Sarah defended carefully and with time getting low and mental energy running out John offered a draw which was gratefully accepted.

2. Phil 0.5 - 0.5 N Livesey (147)

My opponent played some unusual moves on the White side of a King's Indian and ended up with a Knight on b6 that was either annoying or stuck out of play. Sadly it seemed to be more annoying and I gave up a pawn to get a bit of freedom. My opponent then created a passed pawn on the Queenside and as I had only a minute on the clock things looked grim. However I finally got going and created enough counterplay to win my pawn back and exchange the rest of the pawns resulting in a draw.

3. Steve 0.5 - 0.5 G Trueman (159)

Steve played an unusual 2. b3 system against the French Defence and got a promising attack but was unable to break down his opponent's resilient defence.

4. Tudor 0 - 1 P Kirby (158)

Tudor had a promising King's Indian when I looked. I missed how this one ended.

5. Dave N 0.5 - 0.5 T Kay (141)

Dave played his new Colle system and ultimately ended up with K + P vs K. Unfortunately he had no time to think and threw away a won ending.

6. Dave B 1 - 0 C Baker (126)

When I looked at this game Dave was a Rook down but had some pawns to compensate. As both players only had 3 minutes left on their clocks anything could happen. As I expected Dave moved faster than his opponent, unfortunately missed a chance to quickly end the game but was about to win on time when Chris was advised to stop the clock and claim the draw as Dave apparently was not trying to win.

After some controversy Chris agreed to concede the game which meant the match was drawn.

Tuesday, 4 February 2014

Wilmslow 1 ECA 5

Wilmslow currently only have one point from 6 matches so ECA were strong favourites going into this match. An easy game for everyone then? Let's see...

1. C Mills (155) 0-1 John

John's opponent played the Queen's Gambit Accepted and broke all the rules, moving his Queen early to keep hold of pawns. John recovered all his pawns and got a huge advantage that his opponent could not squirm out of.

2. K Moran (142) 1-0 Phil

Do I have to remember this game? In a Sicilian Dragon where neither of us knew a lot of theory my opponent achieved a Knight on d5 that absolutely killed me. After defending carefully for some time I cracked and allowed a mate in one. Oops.

3. C Guffogg (134) 0-1 Tudor

In a Queen's Gambit Tudor's opponent managed to advance some Queenside pawns quite menacingly but managed to get his Queen trapped.

4. R Warhurst (115) 0-1 Dave N

Dave played a kind of King's Indian against Robin's solid setup and eventually managed to create complications and outplay his opponent.

5. A Flynn (95) 0-1 Keven

Keven created a weird position in a Trompovsky Attack. Despite Keven's King being on the Queenside both players seemed determined to attack on the Kingside. Eventually Keven confused his opponent into throwing away a lot of material.

6. M Garvin (87) 0-1 Paul

Paul's trusty Modern Defence gave him a solid position where he gradually advanced and outplayed his opponent.

So 5-1 to ECA! We have a rather sterner challenge next week in the shape of Marple C.