Summer Monthly Matches v Wellington #4

Last night we saw our series of Summer friendly matches against Wellington come to an end. Here is the report that will appear in the Wellington Newspaper:

Wellington hosted Taunton for the fourth and final match in their series of summer friendly matches between the club’s. The final match was meant to be the decider with each club having achieved one win, one loss and one draw and they still finished level overall after a close fought final match. Wellington gave a debut to Gregor Fotheringham from Tiverton who will be able to play at Wellington on a fairly regular basis when his commitments to Tiverton allow.

Wellington also gave a debut to Patryk Adamiec, younger brother of Adrian who is now a seasoned match player. Debutant’s nerves got the better of Patryk who played well until a blunder put him in difficulties against Taunton’s Nathanael Tretheway from which he could not recover. Wellington soon fought back and Alan Brinkley levelled the match with a quick win.

Chris Greenaway

Taunton’s Chris Greenaway against Gregor Fotheringham

Wellington fell behind when Robert Harris made a big blunder in his match against Vic McAndrew who then maintained his advantage and never put a foot wrong as he wrapped up an easy win. Wellington pulled level with a win from Gregor Fotheringham on top board against Chris Greenaway, the British Champion in the under 120 grading class. Gregor played a thoughtful game using up much more of the time on his clock than his opponent to come out on top.

Wellington then took a good lead with two excellent wins. First, John Jeremiah beat Taunton’s Arnold Acibar who had notched up a series of Wellington scalps in the past. This was a tremendous effort by John whose attacking game put his opponent on the back foot and secured a win for Wellington. This was followed by a win for Ollie Sells against Taunton’s Michael Ward, an experienced and difficult opponent. Ollie played patiently and got on top in the endgame to run out a well deserved winner.

Leading 4-2 Wellington needed a draw from either Adrian Adamiec or Rupert Sells to win the overall match and, with it, the series. Rupert was a rook for a bishop down against Mike Watson but the board was open and both players had attacking chances. It was the Taunton man who made the most of his chances to win by checkmate. Adrian was three pawns down against Steven Smith but missed a chance to win a piece after which he was unable to stop his opponent promoting one of his pawns to clinch the match.

This meant that the match was tied 4-4 but both clubs benefited from being able to give their lower graded players and juniors match experience which is likely to be repeated next year.

Summer Monthly Matches v Wellington #3

Last night was the third of our series of matches against Wellington.  Here is the report that will appear in the Wellington Newspaper:

Wellington chess club hosted Taunton for the third of their summer friendly matches last Wednesday. These matches have been arranged to enable the players graded under 100 to have an opportunity to play competitive matches for their club as players graded under 100 are playing less frequently in league matches as standards rise.

Taunton arrived with a team of seven players and Wellington tried to match them with a team of similarly graded players. Taunton included a junior player in Nathanael Tretheway and Wellington gave Jeremiah Pickard his club debut. Opposite him on board 7. Nathanael showed his greater experience of match play and ran out the winner in the first game to finish.

Taunton went 2-0 ahead when Robert Harris lost against the Arnold Acibar, the highest graded player in the match, despite trying hard to match his opponent who was just too good for him. Things got worse for Wellington when Jon Kerr lost from a good position. Jon was three pawns up but failed to stop his opponent, Mike Ward,  promoting a pawn to a queen which proved to be a decisive advantage for the Taunton man.Taunton clinched the match when Vic McAndrew put them 4-0 ahead with a hard fought win against Adrian Adamiec.

With the match lost  Wellington started to salvage some pride with Alan Stonebridge getting a hard fought victory against Martyn Maber after winning a rook for a bishop to give him an advantage which he built upon until his opponent resigned. Kim Sanders (pictured) then gained his second consecutive win in this series of friendlies. Kym looked well placed throughout and wrapped up his game with a neat checkmate.

In the final game Wellington’s Neil Butler held a slight advantage against Ian Hardy but was short on time. With the match already in the bag for Taunton the players agreed a draw. So Taunton ran out comfortable winners by 4.5-2.5 but once again all those involved who rarely play for their clubs gained some valuable and enjoyable competitive experience.

The final match takes place in late August with each club up to now having won, drawn and lost one.

Summer Monthly Matches v Wellington #2

Another report about the Summer Wellington match number 2 that will appear in the Wellington Newspaper:

Wellington chess club hosted local friendly rivals Taunton in the second of this summer’s series of friendly matches largely intended to give an opportunity to players graded under 100 who can’t command a place in their clubs’ league teams to gain the experience of representing their clubs in a competitive environment.

Taunton arrived with a team of seven players including one player graded over 100 and one junior. The presence of a junior player, Nathanael Tretheway, in the Taunton side provided an ideal opportunity for Wellington’s junior champion, Ethan Denslow-King (pictured) to play a representative match for the club. Ethan should have lost but courageously salvaged a draw from a lost position.

Taunton’s lowest graded players, Mike Watson, Ian Hardy and Vic McAndrew played much better than their grades would suggest and gained wins against Rupert Sells, Alan Brinkley and David Smith. These results were a setback for Wellington but wins on the top three boards would tie the match on the night.

The first of these wins came when Kym Sanders, returning to the home club after a brief absence gained a fine win against the experienced Mike Ward. Wellington narrowed the gap further when Wellington’s promising teenager, Adrian Adamiec,  defeated Steven Smith with a good mature performance. This left just one game undecided where Wellington’s John Jeremiah, unflappable as ever, was again matched against Taunton’s Chris Greenaway.

John needed to repeat his win of a month ago to tie the match and he did just that with his unorthodox but effective style of play against a talented opponent. This meant that the match was tied at 3.5-3.5, but more importantly a lot of good hard fought competitive chess was played by players who do not usually get the chance to represent their clubs.

Somerset Junior Chess Grand Prix & Finals


Last Sunday was the last in the series of tournaments for the Somerset Junior Chess Grand Prix.  It was a little mix of emotions this year having missed one tournament due to sickness and snow cancelling another.  Nathanael knew this tournament was a tight competition amongst the stronger players.

This time it was held in Twerton, Bath where there are a lot of additional players that join the tournament from the chess hub of Bath!  Competition was strong with some long games.  Nathanael came out with 2 wins out of the 6 which meant he came 5th overall in the tournament for the year.

Unfortunately he missed out on gaining one of the top places to gain a place in the final……or did he?

It turns out one of the top four could not make the final so Nathanael has now been invited to take part in the finals on the 30th June 2019 at Millfield.  He plays 3 games against the top player first then depending on the result will play the loser or winner of the other game.

Congratulations Nathanael on making it the final again this year.

Alex Conway Challenge at Wellington

Tonight some of our players were involved in the 4th Simultaneous Challenge held at the Wellington Chess Club, it was a fun night. Here is Wellington’s club newspaper report that went into the Wellington Weekly Newspaper.

Wellington chess club held their fourth annual simultaneous challenge where the club’s top player, Alex Conway takes on all comers in separate games at the same time. Alex always wins a fair number of these games and this year was no exception. Alex had fifteen opponents ranged against him including a contingent from the Taunton club.

With Wellington’s Division 1 players giving the challenge a miss the highest graded opponent was Taunton’s Jerry Kilby who was expected to provide a tough challenge.
Six juniors were included amongst Alex’s opposition, making the most of an opportunity to get experience against a top class player.

Alex played at a remarkably fast pace playing over 200 moves in the first half an hour.
He played his usual positive game and was gaining the upper hand in most games although some were giving him a hard time. The first game was a win for Alex against one of the juniors, Isaac Pickard in 25 minutes but it was almost an hour before he notched his second win beating Ethan Denslow-King, Wellington’s junior champion.

Two more juniors fell, Malachi Pickard and Eric Wall before Alex suffered a setback losing to John Jeremiah who met Alex’s forceful play with his own attacking style. John won a piece then sacrificed it to enable him to mount an unstoppable attack on Alex’s king. Despite this setback Alex then saw off Jeremiah Pickard and agreed a draw with Robert Harris who avoided defeat against Alex in this format for the first time.

Play continued for a while before Wellington’s Jon Kerr and two of Taunton’s players Steven Smith and Vic McAndrew fell in quick succession. Then Alan Stonebridge became the second winner on the night. Alan had won two pawns and this was enough to ensure victory in the endgame. Two more wins followed for Alex one against Alan Brinkley and the other against the last surviving junior, Nathanael Tretheway from Taunton, who had been the first to fall last year. Nathanael put up a fine show this time and pushed Alex all the way.

Taunton’s Jerry Kilby had given Alex all sorts of trouble keeping the game very tight and complex. He won a piece but Alex had good chances for counterplay and a draw was agreed after some good attacking play from both players.The final match went Alex’s way where he eventually overcame David Smith who had looked to be fighting a losing battle before he eventually conceded.
wellington alex conway challenge 2019
This was a fine display by Alex who finished with 11 wins, 2 draws and 2 losses against probably the toughest field ever lined up against him. Alex is pictured standing studying his game with Alan Stonebridge. The others next to Alan from the right being David Smith, Jon Kerr and Vic McAndrew.




Summer Monthly Matches v Wellington #1

Tonight we had our first of 4 monthly matches against Wellington over the summer period. Here is the report that went into the Wellington Weekly Newspaper.

Wellington and Taunton chess clubs held the first of four friendly matches to be played throughout the summer at Chelston Chapel last week. Both clubs have several players graded under 100 who rarely get an opportunity to play in Somerset League matches as the competition from other teams is so strong.

Unlike Wellington, Taunton do not have the use of their home venue during the summer and this year so it was decided to invite Taunton to  play a series of friendly matches involving the lower graded players. Wellington’s Division 3 captain in the West Somerset League came up with the idea that it would be in the interest of both clubs to get some good hard fought games played to give both clubs some welcome practice. Taunton arrived with four players under 100 and three additional higher graded players. Wellington did their best to find opponents of similar grades but found themselves outgraded on the top three boards but with the higher grades on the bottom four boards.

The end result was a win for Wellington but five of the seven games ended in draws, illustrating just how close the games were. Wellington won the other two games to end up 4.5-2.5 ahead. One of these wins came for Rupert Sells ( pictured) on board 7 against Taunton’s promising junior, Nathan Tretheway. Rupert did not make a single Somerset League appearance in the season just ended and this match gave him the chance to play an opponent from another club for a change.

Taunton’s players graded under 100 on boards 4, 5, and 6 acquitted themselves very well as they all achieved draws against Wellington’s higher graded David Smith, Alan Brinkley and Neil Butler who is another who missed out on selection for the West Somerset League last season.

The top 3 boards featured fine performances from Wellington’s team. There was a win for John Jeremiah who continued his excellent league form and excellent battling draws for Alan Stonebridge on board 1 and Robert Harris.

The evening was most successful, not so much for the final score but because everyone involved had a good workout and Taunton will no doubt be difficult opponents again in late June.

Wellington Club Summer Invitation

Wednesday, 22nd May 2019 (and every 4th Wednesday of the month) will be the start of our Summer monthly matches against Wellington.  Please speak to Steve Smith if you want to be included.

Also remember Wellington Chess Club have given us an open invitation to join them throughout the summer months if you want a game during our break.