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.