A visit to Hammersmith, currently the strongest club in the league, at their new venue, the London Mind Sports Centre, was always going to be a tough ask, but, for the most part, we resisted well before succumbing by 4 games to 2.
(Ratings in this and other results are usually taken from the league websites so are not always up to date.)
- Marco Gallana (2318) 1:0 Gavin Wall (2284)
- Ali Hill (2261) 0:1 Mike Healey (2267)
- Thomas Bonn (2180) 1:0 Bertie Barlow (2006)
- Carsten Pedersen (2203) 1:0 Maxim Dunn (1900)
- Chris Skulte (2136) 1:0 Ian McLeod (1908)
- Jim Stevenson (2114) 0:1 Maks Gajowniczek (1750)
Ian opened up the position with his king still in the centre and swiftly paid the ultimate penalty. Maxim was outplayed in the middle game by Carsten’s favourite Closed Sicilian. I didn’t see much of Gavin’s game but he ended up a piece behind in the ending.
Maks went from zero (in the last match) to hero with the performance of the night. His three connected passed pawns proved too strong for his Scottish International opponent’s extra minor piece. Jim had to return the piece for two of the pawns and Maks had no problem converting in the ensuing rook ending. Bertie quickly reached an ending where his opponent’s more active king proved the decisive factor. Finally, Mike’s game was, as usual, totally chaotic, and, with pieces flying all over the board in the time scramble, he delivered a snap checkmate.
Thanks to all for playing and congratulations to Mike and Maks.
Our next match sees us in calmer waters, at home to Ealing A on Tuesday 15 February. Please make a note of the date.