I'm pleased to report that Marple beat Stockport last night and have won the South East Lancs Summer League Cup to add to our burgeoning cabinet of trophies. Well actually we don't have a cabinet and I'm not sure that the trophy exists, but you get my meaning!
Alan Smith 0.5 0.5 Daniel Fernandez
Andy Reeve 0 1 Alex Longson
Paul Cawley 0.5 0.5 Michael Fernandez
Phil Siddall 0 1 Sarah Hegarty
Mike Tunstall 0.5 0.5 Paul Kirby
Jill Barber 0 1 Ioannis Lentzos
Stockport had white on odd boards.
Ioannis was first to finish. I think it was a 2.Qe2 French. Opposite side castling ensued, Ioannis built up a promising Kingside attack and won a piece and shortly the game. A convincing crush.
Pauls game finished in a draw after a complex struggle. I think Paul will be the first to admit he was completely lost out of the opening (a 2.c3 Sicilian) but managed to find counterplay.
Daniel finished next. The game was a four knights where Daniel accepted an inferior pawn structure in exchange for the bishop pair. I thought white was slightly better but Alan transposed into a simplified ending a pawn down but Daniel's extra pawn was doubled and isolated. It looked very hard to win - he tried for many moves but in the end accepted a draw when low on time.
The last 3 games finished in quick succession. I think Michael finished first. The game was I guess a Double London system. It seemed quite balanced but Michael sought complications and ended up in difficulties I thought - I didn't see the finish as I was involved in a blitz finish.
Sarah played a good game against Phil Siddall in a 5...Ba5 French Winawer. The pawn ending she reached (White King on g4 and pawns on g2 and h2. Black king on g6, pawn on h6) was interesting to analyse afterwards in the bar, in the end I think we found a win. I think this a derivative of "Capablanca's" ending, a position he studied. Black went wrong immediately with ...h5+ and resigned before awaiting Sarah's reply (Kf4).
So I was last to finish. The game had been fairly balanced but at a key moment in the endgame Andy went passive and I established a clear plus. The 'good' knight vs 'bad' bishop ending was very unpleasant for black (possibly lost) and I was able to win in the blitz finish.
Question for the club officers; could this be the youngest Marple lineup ever? (Average age 20 years old).