On this day in 1975 we played our last LL1 match of the year, against Lewisham. A disappointing defeat, not helped by the unwelcome appearance of DE Fault on board 7, meant that we didn’t have a very merry Christmas. You’d be correct in guessing from the series title that we would, however, have a Happy New Year.
|19 December 1975||University of London Union|
|Richmond & Twickenham 1||Lewisham 1|
|1||AP Law 225||½:½||ML Fuller 216|
|2||DSC Goodman 200||½:½||KJ Wicker 206|
|3||GH James 211||0:1||PV Byway 203|
|4||MJ Franklin 192||0:1||JG Nicholson 203|
|5||KI Norman 191||½:½||LM Pickett 178|
|6||MJ Lightfoot 183||0:1||S Macdonald-Ross 179|
|7||Default||0:1||NR Oliver 187|
|8||DM Andrew 182||½:½||MR Major 178|
|9||P Gillham 184||1:0||MJ Pitt 170|
|10||CD Carr 178||1:0||MM Robertson 166|
|11||HO Herbst 171||½:½||G Botley –|
|12||R James 174||½:½||TP Baldwin 146|
Lewisham’s board 10, Mark Robertson, still plays for the same club in the London League: in the past 43 years his grade has improved by 21 points, to 187.
These days, league chess shuts down for three weeks or so over Christmas. Back in 1975 there was no such respite. We played Thames Valley League matches on the 22nd and 23rd December (our A team travelled to Maidenhead, where I lost to Nigel Dennis), there were two matches on 29th December, including another A team match, this time against Chertsey, and our C team had little time to recover from their New Year celebrations before visiting Acton on 2 January (a Friday) where our opponents had a certain Nevil Chan on top board.