League leaders held to tough draw at Bath (03/01/18)

The away fixture in Bath is always a challenging one, and on this occasion particularly so with the Bath team being strengthened by the addition of Roy Phillips’ return from Mauritius.

The match started badly for us with Harvey’s Dragon quickly put to the sword on board 6. Alex and Roy’s game on board 2 was apparently all theory, and was relatively quickly drawn as was Phil’s game on board 5. Steve however had made good progress against Adam on board 3 and was exerting significant positional pressure. The board 1 game looked relatively balanced, as was mine on 4 as I attempted to manoeuvre against my opponent’s double fianchetto opening.

Steve managed to convert his positional advantage very smoothly, turning down the opportunity to win a piece (but leaving a murky position) in favour of something much clearer. Aaron however went wrong against David and wasn’t allowed any opportunities back into the game.

This just left my game, in which things had deteriorated badly when I misjudged the consequence of some central pawn exchanges. The resulting position was lost, but at least very tactical, and in mutual time pressure I was lucky enough to pull off a full point swindle, leaving the match drawn. For the team it felt very much like a point gained from than a point lost!

(1) D. Buckley 1 – 0 A. Guthrie

(2) R. Phillips 0.5 – 0.5 A. Easton

(3) A. Musson 0 – 1 S. Dilleigh

(4) A. Gregory 0 – 1 D. Pugh

(5) C. Walley 0.5 – 0.5 P. Nendick

(6) C. Brown 1 – 0 H. Atkinson

BATH 3 – 3 HORFIELD A

NB: Horfield were black on boards 2, 4 and 6

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