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Legal & General

Rapidplay Match

Played 20th September 2008 at The Carpenters Arms

Insurance

R1

R2

Legal & General

Ian Hunnable (B, W)

0-1

0-1

Marcus Osborne (W, B)

David Sedgwick

˝-˝

1-0

Mark Daniels

David Malcolm

˝-˝

0-1

Geoff Marchant

James Aldred

˝-˝

˝-˝

Simon Wrigley

Geoff Naldrett

1-0

0-1

Michael Chang

Brian Atkinson

1-0

0-1

Steve Johnson

Alf Bullock

˝-˝

˝-˝

Matt Sparkes

Ray Hamilton

0-1

˝-˝

Laurence Draper

TOTAL 6˝

4-4

2˝-5˝

9˝ TOTAL

Format: Two rounds Rapidplay, 30 mins per clock per game.

Report by Ian Calvert:

ICC lost a close match against Legal & General 9˝-6˝. The Rapidplay match was played at 30 minutes per player per game. Each player played the same opponent with White and Black. ICC drew the first round (R1) 4-4 but lost the second (R2) 5˝-2˝.

Due to flu, Mark Rich was unable to play. He was replaced, at short notice, by David Sedgwick who scored 1˝ out of 2 on Board 2.

On Board 1, Ian Hunnable had the toughest games against an opponent rated (slow-play) nearly 20 points higher. His insightful description of the games, illustrating the increased importance of clock time in Rapidplay  games, follows.

“My first game was a Q Indian Petrosian variation. I lost a pawn to an obscure combination, after what turned out to be an injudicious ...f6, and lost on time just before reaching a R&P ending which my opponent was not convinced that he was winning, even though he would then be (according to our postmortem) two pawns up.

"I had a better game in R2, reaching the Maroczy Bind. I came out of the late middlegame with an extra pawn only to be hit by ...Qc8 apparently winning a piece. I could find no defence and a few moves later lost on time then two pieces down (as the result of trying to bluff my way out of the apparently losing position). My opponent then told me of a resource I had missed which would leave me with an objectively winning position, although the time situation would make it difficult for me to realise the full point over the board.

This was the critical position ...

"A sequence of exchanges produced this position where I picked up the extra pawn with 1 Bxc4 only then to realise that 1...Qc8 appears to win a piece. Black indeed played this move. I could find nothing better than 2 Ne4 Bxe4. I can't remember what happened then, but my flag fell shortly afterwards. My opponent then pointed out that I had 2 Be6!! (since 2...fxe6 3 Qxe6+ picks off the knight). We looked at 2...Qxc3 3 Bxd7 Qd4 4 Qf2 Qd3 5 Re1 Nd1 6 Qe2 leaving White clearly winning. I think he then suggested 3...Nxf2 4 Qxg2 (4 Kxg2 Qxf3+) 4...Qd3. However, I had only two minutes when he played ...Qc8, he had about four, and even had I found Be6, there is enough complexity in the apparently simple resulting position, that I would have done well not to have lost on time anyway. I would have needed to find 2 Be6 in his thinking time before 1...Qc8, and played it immediately; had I found it only at the end of my thinking time after 1...Qc8 there is no way I could have beaten the clock. (Strangely enough, I think if there had been a pawn on e6, I would have found Bxe6. It's more obvious as a capture. [The pawn that I captured on c4 was originally the black e-pawn!])

"At least my much stronger opponent did not outplay me. He just played more accurately, causing me to use more time than he, and I made more mistakes.”

On Board 2, David’s games were typically sharp. He was unlucky not to win 2-0 since he ran out of time with his opponent having a lone king in R1.

David Malcolm, in what was sadly to be his last match for Insurance, pressed for a win in R1 after a French Advance variation but his opponent defended well enough to achieve a draw. In R2 his opponent played a surprising Bxh2 sacrifice after playing the Petroff.

James played very solidly, drew in both rounds and never looked like losing.

Boards 5 and 6 were more eventful. Geoff and Brian provided our wins in R1. Brian saved a seemingly lost game. Geoff won on time after a complex game. In R2 however they both lost.

Alf like James drew both games.  Symmetrical flank openings led to appropriately quick agreed draws. The R2 game in particular was grandmasterly!

On Board 8, Ray was unlucky. In R1, he was left with a significant pawn weakness after an e-file pin trap didn’t quite work. In R2 he played a dangerous exchange sacrifice which his opponent adequately countered with a quick return of the material

IC

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Oxford University

Played 25th October 2008, at Exeter College, Oxford

Oxford University

v

Insurance

Chris Bicknell 178 (B)

1-0

Ian Hunnable 172 (W)

Steffen Schaper 173

˝-˝

Ian Calvert 162

Keith (?) Anderson -

˝-˝

Martin Page 151

Murray David 163

˝-˝

Tony Paish 145

Yi Ming Lai 117

1-0

Bob Collins 135

 

3˝-1˝

 

We lost again this year, rather easily, to a well-prepared Oxford side at Exeter College. The match was over five boards following the untimely death of David Malcolm, who would have taken board 3.

The most exciting game was probably Tony Paish’s. He reports below:

“My opponent, as White, sprang on me an innovation on the 4th move of the Four Knights Opening, causing me to think a long time, and then make a cautious response, because I saw that the obvious aggressive reply was open to an immediate counter. (It was only after lengthy analysis at home after the match that I was able to satisfy myself that with best play this counter should have been good enough only for equality.) This allowed White to get a positional pull, and I found myself with less space and having to defend very carefully. However, on Move 17, by oversight, White recaptured a pawn the wrong way, allowing me to win the exchange for a pawn, after which the chances became roughly equal. On move 24, while initiating a Kingside attack, White overlooked an apparently defensive move by Black which contained a hidden sting that apparently allowed him to win two pieces for a rook. After long thought White found the only saving resource which not only averted the immediate material loss but regained the exchange, at the cost of exchanging off nearly all the pieces into an opposite coloured bishops ending. Moreover, I was then immediately able to regain the pawn which I had lost earlier (as I had foreseen), leaving a dead drawn ending.”

Likewise my game on Board 2 resulted in an early  bishops’ ending (but same colour) at move 23. However, this equal position had followed  the uneventful opening and draw of A. Wilson v Calvert, Hastings 2006/7. My opponent then outplayed me but I managed to find an adequate defence always just staying within the margin of a draw.

On Board 1, Ian Hunnable, playing the White side of a Maroczy Bind against a Divinity student, left his queen exposed to a discovery that cost him a pawn and a losing position. Ian's attempts to salvage something through "muddying the waters" were easily dealt with.

Martin Page perhaps came the closest to winning. His game was the last to finish after his opponent saved an apparently difficult endgame.

Bob Collins lost to the OUCC captain, who kindly played at a faster rate following Bob’s late arrival, which was due to train problems. Bob reports: “My opponent played the Dutch defence, which I had not played for some time.  After simplifying the position, I found my queenside pawns to be weak, which my opponent exploited to obtain a winning passed pawn.”

IC

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Combined Services

Played 6th December 2008, at The Carpenters Arms

Insurance

v

Combined Services

Martin Page 151 (W)

˝-˝

Peter Doye 158 (B)

James Aldred 144

˝-˝

Danny O'Byrne 140

John Philpott 142

1-0

Karl Emmins 128

Bob Collins 135

1-0

Wayne Barkworth 120

Geoff Naldrett 125

1-0

Steve LeFevre 119

Alf Bullock 107

1-0

Phil Hales -

5-1

Report by Ian Calvert:

The match began at 1400.  Just half an hour later, although ICC had the higher average rating, it was very far from clear that ICC would win: not least because Geoff had been greatly delayed at the Arena (Millennium Dome). By 1700, ICC had secured a 'not-as-easy-as-the-score-suggests' 5-1 victory, Geoff completing an epic win after his opponent had been reduced to inactivity as Geoff’s pawns advanced.

In the early stages, the Board 1 and Board 2 games, although hard-fought, never looked better than draws. John Philpott and Bob Collins had not yet begun to really outplay their opponents although Bob’s opponent seemed to really struggle against his Najdorf. Geoff looked in a little trouble with White in a c3 Sicilian. Alf's Hippopotamus was not carrying him further than the third rank although he was never in trouble. A story of each game follows.

On Board 1, Martin was soon playing a Grunfeld-Exchange-variation-like ending. In the early stages his opponent had the two bishops against bishop and knight with each side also having queen, rook and six pawns each. Peter Doye exchanged his fianchettoed kingside bishop for the knight leaving opposite coloured bishops and a slight Kingside weakness. Eventually with queen and rook exchanges a drawn bishop of opposite colour ending with an equal number of pawns each resulted. Martin then cleverly sacrificed a pawn to practically force a draw offer from Peter.

James misplayed the opening, and was soon a pawn down with no real compensation. His opponent missed opportunities in the middlegame to open lines against James' castled King with probable decisive effect, and then advanced his queenside pawn majority prematurely, allowing James to regain the pawn. Relieved to have survived, James was glad to accept the draw offer that soon followed, although a brief post-mortem established that the tables had turned in his favour in the final position.

John played a solid, closed English with very few exchanges, his opponent playing an early h5. Eventually his opponent opposite castled on the queenside. John advanced his queenside pawns and also set a cunning kingside trap into which his opponent fell.

Bob probably had the most convincing win. His opponent spent a lot of time on the opening. Bob won a pawn and had a positional advantage then won another pawn.

Geoff played a slow variation of the c3 Sicilian, offered an early queen exchange and nearly got a bishop trapped to a pawn avalanche on the kingside. Somehow he survived. He then played an inspired exchange sacrifice which soon had his opponent in a really dire ending: without hope but not resignable. Geoff assures me the sacrifice was sound! His opponent LeFevre seemed to do all that was possible to defend a hopeless position.

Alf played a Hippopotamus Defence against his young opponent. Eventually he created a weakness, doubled isolated d-pawns, which he attacked. He won one of the pawns as his opponent tried in vain to create a kingside attack. His opponent then blundered a rook in a hopeless position.

IC

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Cambridge University

Played 24th January 2009, at Christ's College Cambridge

Cambridge University

v

Insurance

Li Wu 212 (W)

1-0

Laurence Ball 175 (B)

Peter Roberson 194

1-0

Martin Page 151

Mykhaylo Tyomkin 146

1-0

Bob Collins 135

Richard Lee 147

1-0

Geoff Naldrett 125

Tariq Oozeerally 170

1-0

Brian Atkinson 121

Stephen Cairns 143

1-0

Alf Bullock 107

 

6-0

 

Report by Ian Calvert:

This year, in spite of  some heroic defence and many interesting and enjoyable games, ICC lost on all boards against a much stronger Cambridge side.

On Board 1, Laurence Ball in his first game for the club played the Dutch defence against a player rated 212. Laurence faced 2. Nc3 and an early Bxf6. Although he eventually had two bishops versus two knights, he had significant pawn weaknesses which his opponent cleverly exploited.

Martin’s comments on his game follow: “In my game with Mr. Roberson I played the Tarrasch line against his French defence. He chose an unusual defence. I mishandled it and he soon won a pawn. I then had some play but it was never remotely enough. My opponent finished elegantly, with a drastic refutation of a tactic I had employed to try and save the loss of a second pawn.”

Bob Collins played his usual Sicilian. Both sides castled on the kingside. Black seemed to be ok with a pawn on e5 as he gained control of the open d-file although his opponent had pawns on f5 and e4. However his opponent used those pawns as part of a winning pawn avalanche on the kingside.

Geoff fought tenaciously with a slightly passive position after being White in a Queen’s Indian opening. His opponent gradually increased the pressure finishing with a nice unavoidable sacrifice after some deeply calculated play. This was the last game to finish.

Brian lost after he blundered a piece in a complex opening where he seemed fine. He appropriately resigned immediately.

Similarly Alf lost after being equal at move 14 in a non-routine complex Closed Sicilian in which nothing had been exchanged.

IC

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Hastings

Played 4th April,  2009, at 2 Cornwallis Terrace, Hastings

Hastings

v

Insurance

Richard Almond 175 (W)

˝-˝

Ian Hunnable 172 (B)

Paul Kelly 158

0-1

Ian Calvert 162

Chris Hann 150

1-0

Martin Page 151

Ray Brooks 147

˝-˝

Paul Barclay 146

Void

Void

Void

Eric Houghton 97

1-0

Alf Bullock 107

 

3-2

 

Report by Ian Calvert:

We lost a close match against Hastings this year although we slightly outgraded them.

On Board 1, Ian played a tough heavyweight draw against Richard Almond. It eventually centred on an isolated passed pawn: after Ian's d5 ...break-out. His game report follows.

“My game was a Nimzo-Indian Classical variation (4 Qc2) in which I gave a first outing to the main line 4...c5 (I have hitherto employed Botvinnik's move 4...d5). I failed to find the most energetic continuation and White was able to build a large centre unmolested. However, I retained a sound position with room to manoeuvre (Fritz rates the position from the opening as equal). I was subsequently able to organise a break-out with ...d5, the consequent exchanges leaving White with an isolated pawn at c5. This pawn was advanced enough that I had to keep it blockaded, but also weak enough that White had to keep it defended. The position remained balanced and tense through a mutual time scramble for the first time control. During the quickplay finish I felt at that White had missed a win, but subsequent analysis reveals a Black defence (would I have found it over the board?). With only six minutes left in the game and with no resolution in sight, the players agreed a draw.” Link to game: Almond-Hunnable

By contrast, my win was more like Bart v Homer Simpson : 1.b3 b5.... In the middle game, after playing a sharp rather than the safe move, I played with insufficient energy and lost a pawn. However I made life difficult for Paul in what was often probably a lost Queen and Knight ending a pawn down. Eventually he won a poisoned second pawn but fell into a mating net.

Martin's report on his game against Chris Hann follows.

“In my game, Chris Hann managed to produce an attack on my King, and won queen and pawn for rook and knight. As sometimes happens, there was then a reaction in my favour (though material down I had four pieces against three) but I never had quite enough and, in a very double-edged position, Chris found a really smart finish forcing either mate or a ruinous win of material.”

Paul's game was much less eventful as his report records.

“My opponent just played for a draw which I found very difficult to avoid so no real comments on the game, mind you it lasted longer than my previous encounter ..."

Alf played an English opening. It soon became a reversed Sicilian. Then Alf tried to create a reversed Hippopotamus which was a little too passive. His opponent's active play produced a dire position for Alf. Unfortunately stout defence was not enough to save the game.

IC

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16th Roy Wagstaff Memorial Match v Wanstead & Woodford CC

Played 9th May, 2009 at Wanstead

Wanstead & Woodford

v

Insurance

Larry Marden 160 (W)

1-0

Ian Hunnable 172 (B)

David Spearman 160

1-0

Martin Page 151

Mark Murrell 139

0-1

Tony Paish 145

Peter Nickals -

1-0

Jerry Dowlen -

Sid Burns 85

˝-˝

Alf Bullock 107

 

3˝-1˝

 

Report by the Webmaster based on notes by Paul Barclay

First to finish was Board 3. Mark Murrell, after getting an edge in the opening, lost two pawns and resigned. Next to finish was Martin Page. He seemed to have a good game which came down to major pieces, but his attack was resisted and Q-side pawn weaknesses told against him.

Jerry Dowlen has not played much in the past year and was perhaps a little rusty. He was up against an opponent who did well in the recent Southend Easter Congress and was able to build on that and garner another point for the home team.

I took a wrong turn in the opening as early as move 8 in a main line Nimzo-Indian (4 e3), when I played
8 ...c5? instead of 8 ...d5, allowing White the advantageous advance e4-e5. Although the game got a little exciting when the QPF arrived, I never really recovered from the opening error.

Alf Bullock achieved a material advantage but was short of time on the colck and was glad to accept Sid Burns' proposal of a draw.

IDH

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These team stats are those that count towards the Tooke, i.e. standard play games, and therefore do not include the Legal & General match, above, which was a rapidplay match.

Friendly Fixtures

PAGE DATE: 18-May-2009

Opponents

Result

Score

Player

P

W

D

L

Pts

%

Perf.

Oxford University

Lost

1˝-3˝

DI Calvert 162

2

1

1

0

75.00

-

Combined Services

Won

5-1

AGC Paish 145

2

1

1

0

75.00

-

Cambridge U.

Lost

0-6

AC Bullock 107

4

1

1

2

37.50

98

Hastings

Lost

2-3

JA Philpott 142

1

1

0

0

1

100.00

-

Wanstead & Wdfd.

Lost

1˝-3˝

GW Naldrett 125

2

1

0

1

1

50.00

-

 

 

 

RF Collins 135

3

1

0

2

1

33.33

111

 

 

 

MC Page 151

5

0

2

3

1

20.00

135

 

 

 

JH Aldred 144

1

0

1

0

˝

50.00

-

 

 

 

PR Barclay 146

1

0

1

0

˝

50.00

-

 

 

 

ID Hunnable 172

3

0

1

2

˝

16.66

138

 

 

 

BW Atkinson 121

1

0

0

1

0

0.00

-

 

 

 

L Ball 175

1

0

0

1

0

0.00

-

 

 

 

J Dowlen 100

1

0

0

1

0

0.00

-

P:5 W:1 D:0 L:4

13 Players