Match Results Update 25-05-22

Our last Surrey match of the season, an Ellery Williams (rapidplay) fixture at home to a strong Wimbledon team, resulted in an excellent 3-1 victory.

  1. Otto Weidner (-) 1:0 Mike Williams (1788s)
  2. Mike Robinson-Chui (-) 0:1 Gordon Rennie (1728s)
  3. Kabir Jeirath (-) 1:0 Pavel Slonczuk (1668s)
  4. Amrit Jeirath (-) 1:0 Martin Lake (1465s)

It was great to be able to give Amrit and Kabir a game before their return to India, and they both won their games against experienced opposition. We hope to see them back again at some point in the future.

Our last Thames Valley match saw our C team entertain Surbiton C. A close match resulted in a draw: a big improvement on our heavy defeat against the same opponents a few weeks ago.

  1. Otto Weidner (-) 0:1 David Cole (1653)
  2. Christos Venetis (-) 1:0 Robin Browne (1728)
  3. George Milligan (-) ½:½ Alexey Markov (1600)
  4. Mike Robinson-Chui (-) 0:1 Oleksiy Podolyan (1578)
  5. Levente Lencses (1525) 1:0 David Morant (1450)
  6. Lewis Low (1435) ½:½ Paul McCauley (1403)

Congratulations to the winners in both matches and thanks to all for their support throughout the season.

A summary of the season will appear here at some point over the next couple of weeks.

Chess Puzzle of the Week (184)

Gelbmann – Gyimesi
Siofok 1996
White to play

This position is taken from Unbeatable!: The Art of Defense by Jan Werle: my review will be published on British Chess News shortly.

Black has sacrificed a piece for an attack. How should White defend against the threat of mate on g2? I need a variation or two for a complete solution, not just the next move.

Chess Puzzle of the Week (183): Solution

Bowmer – Spanton
Chessable English Senior Championship 65+ 2022
White to play

In last week’s puzzle White can win by playing for a position with KQ v KQ in which he can force mate.

41.c4! Rxe3 (if Black doesn’t trade the rook ending is won) 42.Kxe3 Kxg3 43.c5 h4 44.c6 h3 45.c7 h2 46.c8Q h1Q 47.Qg8+ Kh3 48.Qh7+ Kg2 49.Qg6+ Kh3 50.Qh5+ Kg2 51.Qg4+ Kh2 52.Kf2 and mates.

This idea is worth remembering: it’s very easy to assume the position is drawn when both players promote.

The game actually continued 41. Rd3? Rb3 42. Re3 Ra3? 43. c4! and White, realising that opportunity had knocked a second time, soon won. Black’s only drawing options on move 42 were Rb8! and Rb1!. It’s worth your while looking at why 42… Rb8! is a draw but 42… Rb7? is a loss.

Chess Puzzle of the Week (183)

Bowmer – Spanton
Chessable English Senior Championship 65+ 2022
White to play

I was looking for interesting positions from the recent English Senior Championship and noticed how many games were decided in the ending. Here’s a particularly instructive example.

White to play: how would you expect the game to continue?

Chess Puzzle of the Week (182): Solution

Edward Bagehot Schwann
The English Mechanic and World of Science 1891

Last week’s puzzle, a mate in 2 composed by Richmond Chess Club’s Edward Bagehot Schwann, solves as follows:

1. Ne6!

If 1… a4, 2.R×c5#

If 1… Ka4, 2. Nc3#

If 1… K×c4, 2. Be2#

If 1… Kc6, 2. Nd4#

Nothing profound or difficult, but a flight-giving key, three-quarter star flights and two pin mates.

A good introduction to the chess problem art, I think.

Match Results Update 12-05-22

In this week’s matches our inexperienced players found life difficult against strong opposition from Hounslow A and Surbiton C.

Here’s our TVB team result, a 2-4 defeat.

  1. Andrew Hebron (2020) 0:1 Seshagiri Vaddadi (2065)
  2. Julien Shepley (1971) ½:½ Mat Dydak (2088)
  3. Ieuan Fenton (-) ½:½ Leon Fincham (1900)
  4. Pablo Soriano (-) 1:0 Frank Zurstiege (1690)
  5. Serhat Abay (-) 0:1 JJ Padam (1765)
  6. Christos Venetis (-) 0:1 Eugene Gregorio (1698)

A great win from Pablo and solid draws from Julien (very quickly) and Ieuan. Well played!

And our TVC result, five defeats and only one win.

  1. David Cole (1653) 1:0 Otto Weidner (-)
  2. Robin Browne (1728) 0:1 Adam Spiers (-)
  3. Alexey Markov (1600) 1:0 George Milligan (-)
  4. Oleksiy Podolyan (1578) 1:0 Levente Lencses (1525)
  5. David Morant (1450) 1:0 Mike Robinson-Chui (-)
  6. Paul McCauley (1403) 1:0 Huw Williams (1435)

Another fantastic result from Adam who maintains his 100% record! We’ll be hearing a lot more from him in future!

We have two more matches to conclude the season, both at home. On Tuesday 17 May we have a rapidplay match against Wimbledon in the Ellery Williams Trophy, and on Tuesday 24 May our TVC team play their return encounter against Surbiton C, hoping for better luck next time.

Playing slowplay over the board is very different from playing online blitz. It takes time to adjust to the much slower time limit, not to mention having to record your moves and press your clock. Our newer members will benefit a lot from playing regularly in league matches against tough opposition.

It’s great that we’re attracting so many new members who are keen to try out league chess, and that we have enough teams to give them the opportunity for regular competition.

By the way, if you haven’t already done so, don’t forget to complete our latest survey here.

Survey May 2022

We’re currently looking at planning activities for the summer and looking forward to next season.

We’d be grateful if you could complete a short survey to help us in this respect.

We’d be grateful if all members/prospective members could complete this survey which will enable us to plan our summer activities and work towards next season.

If you have any other comments or suggestions please feel free to contact us at any time.

We’re also planning to upgrade our website with some new features over the next few weeks, so watch this space for further information.

Chess Puzzle of the Week (182)

Edward Bagehot Schwann
The English Mechanic and World of Science 1891

I’ve just published an article about Edward Bagehot Schwann, a member of both Twickenham/Thames Valley and Richmond Chess Clubs, but better known as an authority on and composer of chess problems.

You’ll find some of his games and problems in the article.

Here’s a relatively simple mate in 2 for you to solve, composed when he was still in his teens. White to play and force checkmate in two moves against any defence.

Solving problems like this is a great way to improve your calculation skills. Even if you’ve never tried this sort of thing before, do give it a go and let me know if you’ve found the solution.

Chess Puzzle of the Week (181): Solution

Illingworth-Beeh, Ford Memorial 2002
White to play

Last week I asked you to analyse this pawn ending.

It might look at first as if White, with a passed pawn in the centre of the board, is pressing for a win, but in fact it’s Black who has more chances, although White can hold with careful play.

At some point in the near future Black will play f5, the f-pawn will be traded for White’s d-pawn, the black king will head for the queenside while the white king will head for the kingside. If both players promote, Black will be left with an extra pawn, which will win a pawn ending but only draw a queen ending. Races like this are common in pawn endings and have to be calculated accurately.

Stockfish 15 tells me White has three drawing moves, Ke4 (the simplest), a4 and h4, while all other moves, including the natural b4 which White, a very young junior at the time, chose in the game.

A couple of sample variations: you’ll see that Ke4! gives White an extra tempo to promote first, while after b4? Black will promote first and force a queen exchange.

1. Ke4! b5 2. h4 f5+ 3. gxf5 gxf5+ 4. Kxf5 Kxd5 5. Kg5 Kc4 6. Kh6 Kb3 7. Kxh7 Kxb2 8. h5 Kxa3 9. h6 b4 10. Kg6 b3 11. h7 b2 12. h8=Q b1=Q+ 13. Kg5 which is a tablebase draw.

1. b4? f5! 2. gxf5 gxf5 3. b5 f4 4. Ke4 f3 5. Kxf3 Kxd5 6. Kg4 Kc5 7. Kh5 Kxb5 8. Kh6 Ka4 9. Kxh7 Kxa3 10. h4 b5 11. h5 b4 12. h6 b3 13. Kg7 (or 13. Kg8 b2 14. h7 b1=Q 15. h8=Q Qb8+) 13… b2 14. h7
b1=Q 15. h8=Q Qa1+, trading queens and promoting the a-pawn.

Chess is hard. Pawn endings are hard, especially as you’ll probably have very little time on the clock when they appear on the board. It’s well worth your time looking at other possible variations in this fascinating endgame position.

Richmond C v Hounslow B 03-05-22

Fielding an inexperienced team, we went down to a 2-4 defeat against Hounslow B.

  1. Victor Bluett (-) 0:1 Calum Kinloch (1720)
  2. Adam Spiers (-) 1:0 JJ Padam (1765)
  3. Paul Evans (1563) 0:1 Eugene Gregorio (1698)
  4. Levente Lencses (1525) 0:1 Vibhush Pusapadi (1278)
  5. Mike Robinson-Chui (-) 1:0 Barry Fraser (1443)
  6. Yann Sydow (-) 0:1 Shion Fernandes (-)

A fantastic win for Adam against a strong and experiences opponent in his first competitive game: he looks like a young player with a bright future. Another excellent win for Mike, who is quickly getting used to playing over the board. Congratulations to both: we’re looking forward to great things from you next season! Thanks to all for playing – we still have two more C team matches to come, both against Surbiton C, away on 10 May and home on 24 May.