Results Roundup 2223/16 3 February 2023

A busy week, with four matches to report. Good news, as well. One predictable defeat but no less than three important wins.

Our Surrey Centenary Trophy team were first in action on Monday, visiting Epsom 3.

  1. Chris Marshall (1791) ½:½ Maks Gajowniczek (1800)
  2. James Pooler (1725) ½:½ Simon Illsley (1786)
  3. Alex Ferrario (-) 0:1 Pablo Soriano (1790)
  4. Lucy Buckley (1547) 0:1 David Heaton (1542)
  5. Louis De Cicco (1512) ½:½ Peter Kasprowicz (-)
  6. Mervan Ozcan (1567) 0:1 Mike Robinson-Chui (1442)

A very solid performance with no defeats against our previously unbeaten opponents. Well played everyone: great wins from Pablo, David and Mike. Here we are, sitting proudly on top of the table, with a two point lead over our nearest rivals.

On Tuesday our TVB team, in Division 1 this season, were, as expected, up against it: even though Surbiton A weren’t at full strength their top boards were still too strong for us.

  1. Jon Eckert (1854) 0:1 David Scott (2096)
  2. Andrii Boiechko (1815) 0:1 Altaf Chaudhry (2060)
  3. Pablo Soriano (1780) 0:1 Liam Bayly (1966)
  4. Simon Illsley (1791) Adj Angus James (1995)
  5. Sampson Low (1829) ½:½ Graham Alcock (1789)
  6. Victor Bluett (1711) ½:½ David Cole (1761)

Board 4 has been adjourned: I’ll provide an update when available.

Well done Sampson (captain and last minute sub) and Victor for sharing the points.

On Wednesday it was our London League team’s turn, with a match against Kings Head. Our once mighty opponents have been struggling to raise teams recently, and this was the case here, where they were unfortunately three players short, so we were able to score a comfortable victory, while Martin, Sampson and Maks weren’t required to play.

  1. David Okike (2242) ½:½ Callum Kilpatrick (2465)
  2. Conor O’Shaughnessy (2081) 0:1 Iain Gourlay (2353)
  3. Colin Mackenzie (2015) 1:0 David Maycock (2336)
  4. David Whitehead (1986) 0:1 Gavin Wall (2311)
  5. Alex Bourke (1889) 0:1 Caspar Bates (2133)
  6. Default 0:1 Walkover
  7. Default 0:1 Walkover
  8. Default 0:1 Walkover

Well played Iain, Gavin and Caspar. I guess it’s pretty good (by the standards of most clubs) to have an IM on Board 4.

Here’s the league table, showing us in second place behind perpetual champions Wood Green. However, the three teams below us have matches in hand and could pass us on goal difference.

Finally, on Thursday our TVC team made the rather tiresome journey to Harrow. In a topsy-turvy match they soon took a lead, 1½-½, before losing two games, but then, with Ron turning his position round, ran out winners in an exciting and unexpected conclusion.

  1. John Clenshaw (1728) 0:1 Simon Illsley (1791)
  2. Mary Helen Deans (1665) 1:0 George Milligan (1554)
  3. Patrick Sartain (1505) 1:0 David Heaton (1550)
  4. David Stott (1461) 0:1 Peter Kasprovicz (-)
  5. Jennifer Goldsmith (1397) ½:½ Mike Robinson-Chui (1434)
  6. Phil Humphry (1405) 0:1 Ron Bilkhu (1340)

Excellent wins from Simon, Peter, and, especially, Ron. Great captaincy too from Mike, to get two teams out to relatively distant venues in the same week, and to come away with two vital wins.

Here’s the current league table. Again, we’re top of the division, but the teams below us have matches in hand.

Thanks to all who played in this week’s matches, especially Simon with three appearances, and best wishes for the rest of the season.

Chess Puzzle of the Week (220): Solution

On Monday I gave you this bishop ending (Belyavsky/Mikhalchisin 1992), with White to move. I took it from 300 Most Instructive Chess Exercises by Thomas Engqvist: you can read my review here. If you enjoyed this puzzle you should read the book.

The answer, in brief, is that the pawn ending after Bc5, which looks winning, is actually drawn. The win comes from playing 1. g5! hxg5 2. Bxf6+!

Click on any move to play it through on a pop-up board.

There are some important lessons here on bishop endings, pawn endings, sacrificial breakthroughs and the opposition!

Chess Puzzle of the Week (220)

An instructive endgame for you this week.

White to play and win.

Do let me know how you think White should go about exploiting the extra pawn in this position.

Results Roundup 2223/15 27 January 2023

Unfortunately our D team had to concede their match away to Maidenhead B last Monday. I understand two of their regular players are unwell at the moment and wish them a speedy recovery.

I only have one result to report this week, then, and this time there’s good news, with an important win for Richmond C against promotion rivals Ealing C, avenging a heavy defeat earlier in the season.

  1. Victor Bluett (1711) ½:½ Martin Loat (1627)
  2. Andreas Maroulis (1493) 0:1 Alastair Johnstone (1613)
  3. Josh Wolrich (-) 1:0 Trevor Bates (1548)
  4. Peter Kasprowicz (-) 1:0 Subas Subbaraj (1515)
  5. Mike Robinson-Chui (1434) 1:0 David Websdale (1464)
  6. Ron Bilkhu (1340) 0:1 Gabriele Palmer (1406)

Josh, making his Thames Valley League debut, was last in and first out. Peter, making his Richmond debut, and Mike also scored excellent wins. Ron looked likely to join them, but sadly blundered and found himself in a lost pawn ending. Andreas was outplayed by a dangerous and experienced opponent, so we needed a draw from Victor to win the match. In a time scramble he was down to a lone king, but, luckily for him and for us, his opponent’s flag fell as he was just about to deliver checkmate, so the game was drawn.

Congratulations to Peter and Josh on what I’m sure will be the first of many wins for Richmond in the Thames Valley League, and also to Mike on winning his game and captaining the team successfully. They have another vital match away to Harrow next week.

Chess Puzzle of the Week (219): Solution

I was idly watching the games from the Tata Steel Challengers the other day when I noticed that the game L’Ami – Beerdsen, which had been winning for Black, was now equal.

In this position Black continued Qh2+, a few moves later sacrificing for a familiar perpetual check.

But he had a win here:

41… Bd6 42. Qxd6 Qh2+ 43. Rg2 Rxf3+ 44. Nxf3 Qxd6 45. Rxg7+ Kf8 with a winning material advantage, although I suppose there might be some technical difficulties to be overcome.

You can see the game here.

Did you rise to the challenge by finding the win Thomas Beerdsen missed in this position?

The Masters and Challengers sections are both building up to an exciting climax, with the final rounds this weekend. I’m sure you’ll be watching them – and perhaps learning as well.

Chess Puzzle of the Week (219)

A quick and, perhaps, relatively easy question for you this week.

Black to move. How would you continue here?

Do let me know if you think you’ve found the answer – and, as usual, I need more than the first move for full marks.

Chess Puzzle of the Week (218): Solution

On Monday I left you with an endgame study composed by André Chéron in 1955.

I hope you managed to find the solution. If you’d like to play it through, click on any move and a pop-up board will magically appear!

Being able to play pawn ending like this correctly is an increasingly important skill.

Many of the world’s best chess teachers now agree that solving endgame studies like this should be part of every ambitious chess player’s study programme.

Results Roundup 2223/15 20 January 2023

Some excellent news from the London League where our star team scored an important 5-3 victory over perviously unbeaten Hackney.

Here’s what happened.

  1. Conor Murphy (2537) 1:0 Richard Bates (2427)
  2. David Maycock (2336) 1:0 Dave Ledger (2256)
  3. Gavin Wall (2311) 0:1 Richard Britton (2182)
  4. Iain Gourlay (2353) 1:0 Bob Eames (2215)
  5. Andreas Wetscherek (2095) 1:0 Diana Serbanescu (2112)
  6. Caspar Bates (2133) 0:1 Lukasz Domanski (2046)
  7. Martin Benjamin (2043) ½:½ Adam Robinson (1929)
  8. Sampson Low (1827) ½:½ Paul Conway (1834)

According to Hackney captain Bob Eames: “much piece blundering in the top half, with some epic games to decide the match!”.

Congratulations to Conor, David, Iain and Andreas. Thanks to Gavin for captaining the team and to all for playing.

We’re now on 4/5 in Division 1 of the London League and looking forward to continuing our successes in the second half of the season.

Results Roundup 2223/14 18 January 2023

I have three losses, a postponement, and, finally, a win to report today.

On 9 January our TVC team made the long journey to face a strong Maidenhead B team.

  1. Simon Foster (1949) 1:0 George Milligan (1554)
  2. Steve Piercey (1882) 1:0 Roger Scowen (1710)
  3. John Snead (1725) 1:0 Andreas Maroulis (1493)
  4. Stephen Briggs (1690) 1:0 Ron Bilkhu (1340)
  5. William Castaneda (1714) ½:½ Viorel Scobioala (-)
  6. Yuri Krylov (1518) ½:½ Ollie Taylor (1404)

Welcome to Viorel on his first match for Richmond and congratulations to both Viorel and Ollie on their draws.

On 10 January our Fred Manning Trophy team welcomed Chessington B to the Adelaide.

  1. Steve Payne (1569) 1:0 Graham Legg (1535)
  2. Mike Robinson-Chui (1442) 0:1 Kevin Martin (1437)
  3. Ron Bilkhu (1404) 0:1 Edward Jenes (1429)
  4. Julian Bedale (1117) 0:1 Henry Cramer-Todd (-)

Well done to Steve, whose win prevented a whitewash.

The TVX match scheduled for 10 January between Surbiton D and Richmond E was postponed. I’ll add the date to the Fixtures Page when I have it.

On 16 January our Ellery Williams Trophy team visited Wimbledon, who outgraded and outplayed us.

  1. Craig Fothergill (1841) 1:0 Steve Payne (1569)
  2. John Polanyk (1706) 1:0 George Milligan (1539)
  3. Omar Selim (1422) ½:½ Mike Robinson-Chui (1442)
  4. Paul Lickman (1481) 1:0 Ollie Taylor (-)

This time it was Captain Mike’s job to prevent the whitewash.

Finally, some good news!

On 17 January Richmond D scored a big win against Ealing D in Division 3 of the Thames Valley League.

  1. Alex Shard (1752) 1:0 Subas Subbaraj (1515)
  2. Barry Sutton (1614) 1:0 Lewis Crook (1475)
  3. Dan Donohoe (1490) ½:½ David Websdale (1464)
  4. George Dokic (1369) 1:0 David Hasen (1292)
  5. Laurie Catling (1362) ½:½ Neville Rowden (1247)
  6. Julian Bedale (1125) 1:0 Jason Neish (1236)

Congratulations to everyone on a great result!

Thanks to all players who took part in these matches, and, especially, to the match captains, for organising the teams and transport!

Chess Puzzle of the Week (218)

I’ve just reviewed 300 Most Important Chess Exercises by Thomas Engqvist (Batsford).

Here’s an Important Chess Exercise from the book. This pawn ending was composed by André Chéron in 1955.

It’s White to play and win.

Let me know if you think you’ve found the solution.