Match Reports: A and C teams in action

It was very cold on Monday on the hillside above Clevedon, coats, gloves, visible breathing, so in an impressive display of hardiness 12 brave chess-players battled out a drawn match in division 1.

Callum on Board 1 and Steve on board 4 started proceedings with draws. Steve had the advantage of the bishop pair into the middle game but David defended accurately to secure the half point avoiding the traps Steve was trying to lay. With the first results in the bag it seemed we were well placed in most of the remaining games however it didn’t turn out quite that well with Matias losing to Hugo on board 2. On board 3 Derek had given up a pawn to expose Matthew’s king and create good attacking chances. Black was playing very quickly and Derek taking time searching for the knock-out blow. On board 5 Peter and Paul had played for nearly an hour and a half without any pawns or pieces leaving the board. There was a locked pawn structure with white having a slight advantage with more space. On board 6 Andy was comfortable out of the opening with David somewhat passive in his play.

The game on board 5 opened temporarily, Peter missed a complicated tactic but kept a slight advantage then after pieces were exchanged white had a good knight vs bad bishop endgame that was probably winning with best play, but a mistake in time trouble allowed black to equalise with a temporary pawn sacrifice allowing his king to penetrate and a draw followed. Andy levelled the match by winning on board six by obtaining pressure on the f-file and against the isolated pawn on d4, which eventually resulted in a blunder from David and his resignation.

So the match all square with just board 3 in play. By the time Derek won Matthew’s queen for rook and knight white was down to 2 minutes with black still having 35 minutes left on the clock. Being a good sport Matthew noticed and then pointed out that the clock had been set to 10 second delay rather than 10 second increment otherwise it could have been even more edge of seat. As it turned out a draw was agreed in a position something like the diagram below. Steve did some work on this after the match and found according to the endgame tablebase it is a win in 61 moves! 61 moves playing on the increment in freezing Clevedon hardly seems a reasonable prospect.

So 3-3 on the night, a match we would have expected to win but with Downend A losing on Wednesday we are still in the title race.

1Max Walker (2077).5Callum Brewer (2221).5
2Hugo Fowler (2001)1Matias Candelario (2151)0
3Matthew Wilson (1925).5Derek Pugh (2134).5
4David Painter-Kooiman (1955).5Steve Dilleigh (2072).5
5Paul Spiller (1921).5Peter Kirby (2048).5
6David Peters (1773)0Andy Hill (1931)1
 Clevedon A3Horfield A3

On Tuesday the C team hosted North Bristol. The visitors had struggled to put a team together and managed four players in the end. Board 2 was first to finish, Luke has created pressure out of the opening and won a pawn. From there Tom struggled to find a plan and attempts at counter play resulted in the loss of a piece for black and with it white eased to victory. Board 1 followed shortly afterwards. James had been under pressure against Richard’s pet system and struggled to find good square for his pieces, especially his (very) bad white bishop. The positional advantage allowed white to move pieces to the kingside and when black misjudged the threats around the king a swift mate was delivered with queen and bishops. So 3-1 up with two games to go.

Next to finish was board 4. Lionel had never been in any danger of losing and in the late middlegame had won material to reach an endgame where Mike had a couple more pawns but Lionel had queen for rook. Pawns were picked off and black accepted the inevitable, Lionel had his first win of the season and the match was secured at 4-1. Finally on board 3 Piotr had a pawn advantage but was very short on time and with opposite coloured bishops it felt the result could be anything. Piotr managed to speed up and Mitch gave up a second pawn and once rooks came off white showed better technique mobilising his king to force through his queenside majority.

5-1 the final result. The C team haven’t won many matches this season so nice to start the second half of the season with a win.

1James Facey (1731)0Richard Millener (1711)1
2Luke Millard (1720)1Tom Merchant (1354)0
3Piotr Zielinski (1611)1Mitch Clarke (1289)0
4Lionel Germaine (1605)1Mike Stinchcomb (1394)0
5James Kirk (1519)1Default0
6Mike Jennings (1513)1Default0
 Horfield C5North Bristol B1

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