Google Calendar

Saturday, 31 January 2015

Unbeaten Manchester League Record lost in Snowstorm

Played at the Navigation on Thursday -

Marple 1             V        Denton 1      : Mcr Lge Div One   : 29/01/15

1 M Fernandez    0.5/0.5  P Lopez
2 I Lentzos            0-1       L Antal
3 I Craft                 0-1      D Soares
4 J Reed                0-1       T  Hilton 
5 G Trueman         0.5/0.5  J Ryan
6  P Kirby              1-0       D Holt
7 A Jenkins            1-0       D Fault


The weather on Thursday was very poor with heavy snow. I spent ninety minutes in the morning trying to get on the M60 before giving up. As I knew some of our players would be unable to reach the Navi and also if I am being honest being influenced by the fact that I was suffering from the virus from hell, around lunchtime I asked Tim Hilton if he thought the match should be postponed. Tim was very much of the opinion that the fixture should go ahead. In view of the fact there wasn't a single match free Thursday  available until the 28th of May I decided to go along with this.
Somehow by 7.30 we had been able to assemble a full team. The first twist was in a way amusing as I discovered Denton would have to default board 7 as George Kolbusz had been unable to get out of Mottram.I felt sorry for Andy though who had trudged through the snow at very short notice to find he had no opponent.
I'm afraid I cannot provide my usual board by board commentary. I realise this may look like news management of Murdochian proportions but John was keeping me very occupied and I simply felt too ill to keep getting up and looking at the the other games.
I managed to get some advantage against John and eventually won a pawn.My opponent defended very tenaciously though and aided I suspect by some poor technique by me we eventually reached  a R+3 V R+2  ending with pawns all on the Kingside. It was clear that I would have to win if we were to get anything from the match so I ploughed on but I could tell John knew exactly how to hold the position. I finally agreed to a match losing draw with thirteen seconds left on my clock.
So we lost the match but I would like to say a big thank you to all the players and drivers who turned out in such difficult conditions.  


Friday, 16 January 2015

Initial success for A team in Stockport League

Played at the Navigation last evening -

Marple A                V     Holmes Chapel    Stockport Lge Div 1 15/01/2015

1 M Fernandez  0.5/0.5 JLB Blackburn
2 J Bentley           0-1    JM Turner
3 I Craft                1-0   M Hancock
4 S Hegarty          1-0    B Scattergood
5 P Kirby           0.5/0.5  AL Raeburn
6 G Trueman       1-0      MA Roberts


Although we were heavily outnumbered in terms of initials on the match scorecard (11-6) Marple managed to win last nights chess match against perennially strong opposition in Holmes Chapel.

My game was the first to finish. I felt sorry for Malcolm my opponent. He had gone to the Conservative Club by mistake. I'm pleased to report that they directed him to the Navigation  and as the match was slightly late starting he wasn't even behind on the clock. However I feel things like this are unsettling and I would always advise players in such circumstances to play their opening moves very slowly. Here Malcolm blitzed out the first 10 moves and allowed me to build up a massive Kingside attack. When I've played Malcolm before I've found him a very resilient adversary but here my position was so overwhelming I was able to mate him on move 26.  1-0.

Michael faced very strong opposition who launched a g4 anti -Slav system against him. It always looked to me that Michaels position was sound and  draw was agreed after about two hours play. 1.5/ 0.5.

Paul was on the Black side of  a very dangerous Grand Prix attack. Although he "won" the exchange it was clear that Andrews (Raeburn) Knight was a very good piece indeed. Paul found a way to countersacrifice one of his remaining Rooks for the steed and the players agreed a draw in a position where Andrew could have forced an interesting pawn ending. I'm not sure what correct play would have led to but Michael and Paul analysed this line in some detail afterwards. 2-1.

Sarah then won a nice game against rising star Ben Scattergood. Ben is something of a French Defence expert and his game against Alan Beresford  on the Holmes Chapel blog is well worth playing through. Here in a Classical variation Black almost equalised ..but not quite.. and a passed c pawn ultimately proved decisive  in the endgame. 3-1.

Isaac faced a Kings Gambit from Mike Hancock and bravely played what is arguably the best but most hair raising defence with the ...g5 line. I'd be lying if I said I had any grasp of who was better but it seemed to me Mikes King position was the most important feature of the position. Ultimately Isaac secured the upper hand and with Q+B+N V Q+R found a very nice sac on g3 which forced resignation. We had won. 4-1.

The last game to finish was the battle of the Johns. Our John played a very interesting line where he sacrificed first one then two pawns for a positional advantage. Think QGA meets the Catalan for the type of position. John B then sacrificed a piece and  after the game regretted  winning it back immediately. He could he said have reached a position where he was a lot of material down but John (T)s Rook would have been completely out of the game. In the line chosen White retained some prospects and the deficit was reduced to one pawn with drawing chances when a missed Knight fork ended things. 4-2.

So another good win. Many thanks to all who played and special congratulations to Isaac on his first victory for Marple Chess Club.

Thursday, 15 January 2015

Match result: Marple B vs Macclesfield A: 11th January 2015

1.      Sarah Hegarty       0-1                Rob Shaw
2.      Paul Kirby             1-0                Geoff Laurence
3.      Nigel Livesey     0.5-0.5             Colin Davison
4.      Andy Jenkins     0.5-0.5             Tony Soames
5.      Jeff Barlow        0.5-0.5             Denzil Lobo
6.      Neil Dainty           0-1                Phil Cattermole

Total                            2.5-3.5

Marple B suffered a narrow defeat by a very strong Macclesfield side. This was the same score as the reverse fixture.  It was a good team effort against a very strong team.

I was disappointed with my game in that I got a comfortable plus out of the opening and feel I should have been able to win it from there but after making an error weakening the dark squares around my king and having to give up my dark squared bishop (or so I thought) at the end I was hanging on for a draw.

(210) Lobo,Denzil - Barlow,Jeff [C02]

 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.e5 c5 4.c3 Nc6 5.Nf3 Bd7 6.Nbd2 cxd4 7.cxd4 Bb4 8.Bb5 Nxe5 9.Bxd7+ Nxd7 10.a3 Bd6 11.Nb3 Ngf6 12.Bg5 Rc8 13.0–0 0–0 14.Re1 Qb6 15.Bd2 Qc7 16.Rc1 Qb8 17.Na5 Rxc1 18.Bxc1 Rc8 19.b4 Nb6 20.Ne5 Rc7 21.Nb3 Qc8 22.f3 Nfd7 23.Nd3 Nc4 24.Nbc5 b6 25.Nxd7 Qxd7 26.f4 Qc8 27.g3 Qa6 28.Qb3 Be7 29.f5 exf5 30.Bf4 Rd7 31.b5 Qc8 32.Rc1 Bf6 33.Ne5 Bxe5 34.dxe5 Qc5+ 35.Kh1 Rd8 36.a4 g6 37.Bg5 Re8 38.Bf6 Qd4 39.Qc3 Qe4+ 40.Kg1

At this point, I wanted to play 40. ....Nxe5, but thought I could not in view of 41. Re1 with the need to guard my own back rank.  I failed to spot that Re1 is answered by 41 ....Qxe1+ followed by Nf3+!.  I also worried about 41. Qc8 threatening my vulnerable back rank, but Nf3+ leads to a very neat mate in two (there are two of these depending on white's response.


After failing to spot the best continuation, my position went steadily downhill, dark squared weaknesses coming home to roost.

......Ne3 41.Qd2 Nc4 42.Qh6 Qe3+ 43.Qxe3 Nxe3 44.Rc7 Ng4 45.Rd7 Nxf6 46.exf6 h6 47.Rxd5 Re4 48.Rd7 g5 49.Rxa7 .................. moves not recorded            ½–½

The ending was a classic K+R+P vs my K+R in which I was able to draw courtesy of the 10 second incremental move allowance.  Probably not with best play, though Alex pointed out afterwards that the defending side can draw this if the pawn is on the rook's or knight's file (as in my case) by occupying the queening square with the king and placing the rook on the same rank as the king. Thanks, Alex.

 PS Can anyone do decent diagram on this blog? I managed it once