On Wednesday the 2nd May Mike Wards Division 2 team travelled to Yeovil. The Team Stan board 1 White, Martyn board 2 Black, Matthew board 3 White, David board 4 Black. We felt at a slight disadvantage when we seen our opponents Grades, 188.8.131.52, totalling 583 to 424. As I have been told many times ‘play the board not the grade’.
Matthew opened with his favourite opening c4 the English. Fairly quickly his opponent gained control of the centre with advanced pawns and a well placed troublesome Knight. This proved to strong a position and Matthew graciously resigned.1-0
Martyn played the Sicillian Najdorf against his opponents e4. His opponent made some inaccurate moves and gave Black the advantage. With two very strong Bishops forcing Whites King into the corner on h1. White under developed was under severe pressure. Black appeared to lose the advantage when the Queens were exchanged, but still looked good for a draw. Until move 22 Nb6 giving opponent a pin on Blacks Rook and Knight. Black Rook Knight v Two Rooks this proved decisive. 2-0. (see game)
David board 4 again out graded and playing his second Div.2 game in three days having beaten Theo Kirby in his previous match got off to a good start. Developing a strong Kingside attack with a well advanced Pawn with supporting Queen and Rook. Opponent defended well and created strong counter play. This resulted in White having passed Pawns which advanced up the board with supporting King. 3-0.
Stan played an exceptional game frustrating Black with excellent defensive play. Gaining momentum had Black losing positional space which White took advantage of. White was now in the driving seat and Black was 30 minutes behind on clock. White was playing very strong moves keeping Black on the back foot. Black had a very strong Knight which defensively stopped him being defeated. With White unable to find a way through and not able to use his King to support the attack, as it was defending his pawn structure Black now playing Blitz chess to avoid losing on time was offered a draw with 10 seconds left on his clock, duly accepted. An excellent result Stan and well done on offering the draw thus avoiding your opponent losing on time.
3 1/2 – 1/2. Well played Taunton score does not reflect how close the match was.
On Monday 30th April Steve Smith, Stan Wojcik, Martyn Maber and David Graham went to Glastonbury. Arriving on time we found that we were each outgraded by 20 or 30 points. Hey-ho. Anyway we got the digital clocks going (Stan needed a lot of help to push the right button to start the clock!) and the match started.
Steve succumbed quickly having made a small error on move 4, Martyn was doing well and advancing his king well up the board and Stan made an unwise sacrifice which his opponent managed to capitalise on. David managed to get a 2 pawn advantage and just as he was threatening to win a 3rd pawn his opponent resigned. Click here for the game. Match lost 1-3.
We were not down hearted though and eventually managed to find the right road out of the car-park.
Click here to see Somerset League Division 2 West results so far.
|19/9/17||Tu||Taunton||-||Wellington||3 – 1 (Review)|
|17/10/17||Tu||Taunton||-||Yeovil||2 – 2|
|2/11/17||Th||Chard/Ilminster||-||Taunton||2 – 2|
|14/11/17||Tu||Taunton||-||Glastonbury||3½ – ½|
|12/12/17||Tu||Taunton||-||Wells||1 – 3|
|17/1/18||W||Wellington||-||Taunton||2 – 3|
|30/1/18||Tu||Taunton||-||Weston||3½ – ½|
|27/3/18||Tu||Taunton||-||Sedgemoor||½ – 3½|
|2/4/18||M||Sedgemoor||-||Taunton||4 – 0 (Match defaulted)|
|11/4/18||W||Wells||-||Taunton||4 – 0 (Match defaulted)|
|24/4/18||Tu||Taunton||-||Chard/Ilminster||2 – 1 (3 boards played)|
|30/4/18||M||Glastonbury||-||Taunton||3 – 1 (Review)|
|2/5/18||W||Yeovil||-||Taunton||3½ – ½ (Review)|
|10/5/18||Th||Weston||-||Taunton||(Postponed from 5/10)|
Yes, whilst pawnstar’s fingers are resting from pushing wood and tapping plastic, Martin has been busy and provided us with the following match report –
Taunton Chess Club – Match Reports – Division two
Yeovil vs Taunton 18th December 2013
Has there ever been a normal chess match where there are no unexpected results, no quirks with the venue or players, no controversial incidents or issues, just 12 blokes sitting down and pushing bits of plastic towards each other for 3 hours. What could go wrong with that?
Almost every match seems to be notable for some reason! A stand-out match worthy of mention in an end of year review. And so it was with our away fixture against Yeovil. Our previous fixture, away at Weston was postponed due to only one Taunton non-driving player being available. (Surely a record, worthy of note and a mention in an end of year review)
Yeovil are a strong team and I suspected we would struggle against them as we lost twice to them last season. So far this season Taunton have played three and won three, so we could take one loss along the way. Being so close to Christmas and being an away fixture I knew it would be more difficult than usual to get a team. I couldn’t get a strong over 170 player to play but Alex is a good reserve and we went with a team of five, sadly dropping a board to start with. Five became four when I got a call whilst on the road at 7.05 from Matthew Haines who was making his own way there. Due to the terrible weather and intense rainfall he became trapped at home in a local flash flood. He could have possibly made it but getting back was too risky so had to pull out.
The biblical/Noah style rainfall made driving very difficult and we were stuck in slow or stopped traffic for a while and arrived late and flustered to the venue. Not in the right frame of mind to play chess I lost a shocker of a game (worthy of note for the wrong reasons!) and Robin and Stan drew theirs. Alex’s game was a great fight against A Footner with interesting edge-of-the-seat tactics all over the board (ask to see it if you see him at the club). He lost in the end but it was a great game to be involved in. So we lost 3-1 on the day and 5-1 overall. Thanks to everyone for coming out on a horrible night so close to Christmas. At least it was another away match ticked off.
Chard and Ilminster vs Taunton 9th January 2014
After the 5-1 loss at Yeovil we needed a 5-1 victory to put us back on track. Chard/Ill have a strong team too and on paper they matched us uncannily closely.
Arturo Wong 181 v M Richardt 181 P Chapman 144 v S Wojcik 144
TA Lawrence 133 v Robin Challoner 136 P Brown 129 v M Worrall 132
A Copley Smith E107 v M Ward 90 F Burridge 86 v M Haines 85
Only Mike Wards game was more than 3 point difference. This would suggest over six games a 3-3 draw would be the fair result or perhaps a 3.5-2.5 win for one side.
Mike Ward, playing with white, finished first with a win after a blunder lost black a piece, (if I remember the bits of the game I saw.) Stan and Matthew both drew with the black pieces and Robin played a solid piece sacrifice to force black to resign. 3-1 to Taunton. I played a risky trappy line with black against a c3 Sicilian. If white can navigate the tricky first 10 moves then he usually has very good space and development advantage but my opponent missed the out-of-book-not-easy-to-see best moves and I soon won the exchange and two pawns. White played on as I had a couple of pieces trapped on the back rank but after a few exchanges and as soon as I freed them up he resigned.
Mike R and Arturo Wong usually play 18 moves of theory and call it a draw. But this time their game was last to finish. In what initially looked like a drawn endgame Mike, playing with white, had less than 2 minutes on the clock and Arturo over 15. Mike seemed to be taking longer than his 2 mins left and Arturo moved quickly to press Mike on time. Of course moving quickly without studying the position can lead to mistakes and this is what happened. Arturo missed a drawing move. In a beautifully played endgame by Mike he played very precise moves- including using his king as an attacking piece- to get black in Zugzwang a few times with still 20 pieces on the board! Arturo resigned making the score 5-1 to Taunton. A game and overall result worthy of note and a mention in an end of year review!
Who would have thought a 5-1 win when looking at the grade match ups? At least it makes up for the 5-1 loss to Yeovil. Thank you everyone for playing, especially Mike Ward for driving as well after Alex had to withdraw the night before.
Next match is the Thursday 23rd Jan with another away match against Sedgemoor who are ahead of us and top of the division by two points, but we have a match in hand. This is a real crunch game and could go some way to deciding the title. We must put out a strong team for this one…..
Division 2 captain
Yes, Taunton won their first Div2 match last night v Sedgemoor by 4 – 2
A full report may follow, but it is fair to say Taunton got lucky, and Sedgemoor let us off the hook.
Nick was particularly lucky in winning his game as Will Taylor slipped in time pressure (albeit in a very double-edged position) and should have otherwise won. Credit due however to our bottom two boards, with both Matthew Haines and Mike Ward having wins, particularly so to Mike as he was significantly out-graded. Mike has suppiied the game here –
Alex had a very boring draw and Jerry had an exciting draw, although had Martin seen the game, it was yet a further example of being a rook down yet drawsih..!
Meanwhile, Stan over pressed an attack and sadly lost.