Staines v Richmond TVKO 09-12-19

Our first round match (otherwise known as the quarter-final) in the Thames Valley League Cup pitted us against struggling second division outfit Staines.

Mike Healey reports:

The match (and ratings) belie a worryingly close match.

Gavin got into a typically fiddly and messy position where his opponent perhaps missed a chance to open up scary lines of attack. A very good performance from their board one.

I came up against my personal kryptonite (a <160 rated player), and worse was two pawns up after nine moves. Seduced by the prospect of mating my opponent in the middle of the board, I had to pull out one of my usual cheap tricks for the win.

Chris had possibly the most entertaining game – an utter mess, where white doubled rooks behind an h3 pawn (?!) with most of the pieces on in an open position..

Bertie did well to convert a knight, rook and pawns v rook and more pawns endgame.

Sampson was under a little pressure earlier on, but decided to chop in a probably drawn position.

Adrian overcame his temptation to offer a draw to his young opponent, and converted with some lovely bishops.

With train strikes and a late withdrawal I was quite expecting less than six players for this match – amazingly we had seven! Well done to everyone who made it out to Egham, especially Adrian for very kindly driving some of us back, and to our cheerleader Ian!

Fingers crossed our most difficult match of the season (logistically) done! (Depending on who we get next in the cup..)

Mike

Staines Richmond
1 Derek McGovern 165 0:1 Gavin Wall 224
2 Jack Sheard 153 0:1 Mike Healey 217
3 Shahannah Schmid 148 0:1 Chris White 180
4 Paul Seymour 130 0:1 Bertie Barlow 167
5 Andrew Wilson 117 ½:½ Sampson Low 155
6 Ianto Naef Schmid – 0:1 Adrian Waldock 146
½:5½

I notice that B3 matched up probably the two strongest chess players living in Englefield Green. I wonder if they knew each other before the match.

Thanks and congratulations to all who played.