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Bulletin No 14

Tynedale Chess Club: e-bulletin no. 14 (30.1.08)

This month’s lead story is a close-run thing, with Peter Crichton performing so well on the rapidplay circuit, but in the end I have opted to highlight the unprecedented success of the Tans, so for once the Reivers will have to wait their turn!

Northumberland League Division 2

Tynedale Tans vs Tynemouth Warriors at Tynemouth, 15.1.08

1. Gedon Cohen 1-0 Peter Crichton
2. Phil Jackson 0-1 David Wrigley
3. Richard Oxnard 0-1 Bruce Reed
4. Bryan Ritson 1-0 Phil Taylor
5. Malcolm Robson 0-1 Steve Larkin
  Totals 2-3  

Phil Taylor writes: Bruce won quickly after he’d set a nice trap for his opponent winning Queen and Rook for Queen and getting an immediate resignation. After a fairly equal game with Bryan Ritson I fell to my usual lack of concentration as he forked my King & Rook in an endgame. Next to win was Steve Larkin with the advanced pawn causing his opponent all sorts of problems – I think he had a forced mate when Robson resigned.

(Honesty obliges me to point out that this was in fact the luckiest of wins, after I had deservedly gone a piece down. My pawn on h7 led to my opponent’s rook sacrifice, which in turn led to a forced mate for white. Barely had I begun to congratulate myself on a fine finish when Bruce Reed pointed out that black had a perfectly sound answer involving no rook sacrifice at all. Both my opponent and I had missed this. Ah well, the moment of glory, even if excessively brief, was enjoyable! Ed.)
At 2-1 up there was a long wait until David Wrigley came in with the required 3rd point. He had played an interesting game with the experienced Phil Jackson swapping off Queens and going a pawn up. But Phil’s advanced d-pawn was used to good effect and David went the exchange down (rook for bishop). After much struggle on both sides Phil made the mistake of putting rook & king on the same diagonal and David took full advantage leaving him back to level major pieces but now two pawns up.
There was still much to do to convert the pawn advantage into a win against an opponent who has plenty of tricks up his sleeve but David managed to see the game through to the win and the match result.
Peter had a close game against a player who had been graded in the 160s a few years ago. Peter was eventually worn down even though with his clock going slow he had more like 2 hours.
A good result which should help us avoid relegation.
This was indeed an excellent result against a side with a better track record than ours.  The next result, against Forest Hall on January 29th was even better! Our opponents by and large outgraded us and as a team occupied third place in the division, just behind the leaders.

  Tynedale Tans vs Forest Hall
1. Peter Crichton 0 1 Mike Smith
2. David Wrigley 1 0 Martin Seeber
3. Matthew Taylor 1 0 Jeff Bentham
4. Bruce Reed 1 0 Keith Brooks
5. Steve Larkin ½ ½ John Wall
  Totals 3½ 1½  

Phil Taylor’s comment was:

I’ll have to drop myself more often – well played everyone (including Peter who was robbed!).

David was first to finish, chalking up a fine victory against Martin Seeber in just 16 moves or thereabouts. Later in the evening, but with plenty of time still to play, Matthew made it 2-0 to the Tans. The last three games went pretty much to the wire, Bruce sealing the match for the Tans when the prospect of an unstoppable pawn advance caused his opponent to resign. It was fortunate for all concerned that the result of the match did not hang on the outcome of the game on board 5.  Your editor has had more than his normal share of luck in league matches of late, but this one really took the biscuit! With no more than a few seconds on his clock and just his king and one blocked pawn to his opponent’s king, queen and three pawns, he rushed into the thick of his opponent’s position and found himself stalemated! What a let-off! Peter was last to finish and once more had to concede eventually to a higher graded player (Mike Smith, grade 134). That has tended to be the story of his life in league matches this season, but he has always given his opponents a real run for their money and looks poised to break into the big time in the not too distant future (see also the miscellanea below). So with two wins out of two this month, the Tans now find themselves, temporarily at least, in fourth place in division 2 and fears of relegation look to be a thing of the past.

Northumberland League Division 1

The Reivers have played just one match since the last e-bulletin, away to Jesmond on Jan 11th. It turned out as follows:

JF Turnock 1 0 DJ Weldon
PR Bielby 1 0 C F S Davison
J Lai 0 1 ML Nicholson
E Dodds 1 0 Mark Taylor
D Walshaw ½ ½ TJ Wrigley
  3½ 1½  

Mike Nicholson writes:
Another result as expected – no lucky break to ease our relegation fight.

The match started well – in theory. Edward Dodds and Jonathan Lai both arrived 15 minutes late. The effect however mirrored our Morpeth experience. There, Dave had lost quickly to a late-comer, and now it was Mark’s turn. ‘I had a rush of blood’, was his report. Colin followed, though only after first going a pawn up against Paul Bielby, then a pawn down, and then having to face the impossible task of neutralising the impact of a knight on g5 combining with a queen to hit both f7 and h7. 0-2. Jesmond were minus their top board, Jonathan Mutton, so the preparation I had done expecting a Scotch against Bielby looked to be wasted – but wasn’t, as Lai obliged. That, combined perhaps with late arrival and an A- level earlier in the day, allowed me to keep the initiative and bring us back to 1-2. Dave was looking good against John Turnock, and although Tim was a pawn down, we felt reasonably confident of getting something from him. As someone observed, you don’t see Tim with big advantages, but he ain’t arf good at coming from behind! Colin and I visited the Reprobates-Kings A match in the room next to ours, only to meet Turnock in the corridor on our return with a beaming face and gesturing he had got out of jail against Dave. That left Tim determinedly trying to convert a sizeable clock advantage, seemingly with a rock solid central king and knight and all but one of his pawns on the opposite colour to Dave Walshaw’s bishop. But could he convert? Or could he find enough alternative plans to keep the game going till Walshaw’s flag fell? Walshaw offered the draw, and with nothing hanging on the result, Tim accepted what, chess-wise, was almost certainly the correct result. 3½-1½, and now for Morpeth B, without exam-bound Mark. Both teams below us, Morpeth B and Gateshead Libraries, lost 2-3 in this round, so little has changed in the table.

Many thanks for that report, Mike. Since he wrote that, the Morpeth B match has been rescheduled and so Mark should be available after all. Fingers crossed that wintry weather will not affect Colin’s availability. We all sincerely hope that the Reivers will once again be able to stave off relegation. And who knows, the Tans might even join them in division one!
South Tyne League

There is just one match to report here. On Jan 15th Tynedale played Monarchs, with the following outcome, as reported by Derek Blair.

Thanks for everyone participating in this ‘ in-house do’, featuring some fine games and performances and some not so fine! The full results are below for the record:

Tynedale H/c Res Monarchs H/c Res
Bd 1 M Nicholson 2 2 C Davison 1 2
Bd 2 Mat’w Taylor 4 4 D Blair 3 0
Bd 3 D Foster 8(7) 0 M Reid 4 4
Bd 4 W Wills 9 0 I Emmerson 9 4
Total Score 22 6 (28)   17 10 (27)

Watch out! Monarchs are creeping close to their first win!

So Tynedale continue in their winning ways while Monarchs do the noble thing and prop up the table.

The Club Championship

January has been quite a busy month here, with some interesting developments. Derek, who has been having a fairly wretched time in league matches, continues to carry all before him here, having dropped just half a point from eight games. In consequence, Jack slips one place and now has Mike breathing down his neck. Further down the board, Bruce moves up into fifth place and David W makes a massive leap forward from twelfth to eighth. All those below him risk not making the cut, but there are still two months to go before this phase of the championship draws to a close.

Derek Blair 7.5/8
Jack Bradshaw 6/10
Mike Nicholson 5.5/7
Peter Crichton 5/8
Bruce Reed 4/8
Steve Larkin 3.5/5
Phil Taylor 3/8
David Wrigley 2.5/3
Dave Foster 2/7
Mark Taylor 1.5/3
Matthew Taylor 1.5/6
Malcolm Reid 1/6
Will Higgs 0/7


Peter Crichton  has sent me the following report:

The latest round in the North East Rapidplay took place on Saturday 12th January at the Gosforth club. It was in three sections: Minor [under 101], Major [under 151] and Open. I entered the Major which was played over 5 rounds although I took advantage of the bye offered for the pre-lunch first round. In fact the Major had only 6 entrants so it was effectively an all play all format. I started with a draw but was able to win the remaining three games leaving me with 4/5 [including the half point for the bye] and in joint first place in that section. You may remember that I reported after the previous round [played at the Chillingham Arms] that there had been some disquiet when the Minor section had been won easily by an ungraded gentlemen from Eastern Europe [Paul Janiak] – he turned out again at Gosforth and this time won the Open section!!

I come away from these outings believing that our club members are, for whatever reason, undergraded since I have no doubt that in a similar format with our own members I would score far worse!

Well done, Peter. It’s good to see you making your mark on the rapidplay circuit, even if Life in the League is a bit tough at present!


Mike has sent the following about things on the postal chess front:

On the postal front, are David W and myself the only representatives playing in Northumberland matches this year? Anyone not playing and interested in doing so next year might like to get in touch with Geoff Harrison, NCA Postal Organiser, at 12 Manor Avenue, Benton, Newcastle upon Tyne NE7 7XJ (0191-266 1990). I’m on board 1 in the Ward-Higgs (the first division of the counties championship) and have an unusual and promising position against Senior IM Paul Timson of Lancashire.

My world championship semi-final, in which I’m striving to clinch my own SM title, is going well. I currently stand on 3.1/2 out of 6, have good winning prospects in two of the six unfinished games, the advantage in three of the rest, and look to be likely to save a worrying prospective loss in the last one. I need 7.1/2 total for my SM norm, but 8 for the title. See the cross-table at http://www.iccf- webchess.com/EventCrossTable.aspx?id=11208&order=p , which is up- dated immediately a new result is declared.At the end of January I begin a new competition, an Argentinian invitation event with opponents from Argentina (5), Brazil, Israel, Russia, Romania, Spain, Norway and Canada – an interesting and unusual mix. Also unusual is that it will be a spectator event, if you can conceive of such a thing! All the moves of all the games will be available for viewing by competitors and the public alike, though with a five move delay to avoid interference. I’ll give more information about this later.

         Thanks for that, Mike. The mind boggles trying to take in all your activities on the postal front and the high quality involved. Some of us lesser mortals find ourselves wondering how you manage to fit it all into a day of just 24 hours.

         And now from the sublime to the ridiculous. In the Newcastle championship, your editor continues to shoot himself in the foot and now boasts the inglorious total of half a point from four games. Given that the tournament is arranged on a Swiss system, he is seriously concerned that he will fall so far behind all the other competitors that he will simply drop off the scoreboard into a chess black hole reserved for the utterly incompetent!

         And finally, a date for your diaries. The Whitby weekend Stars Barred chess congress is being held on Sept 12-14th 2008. It has just two sections, Major for grades 121-175 and Minor for 0-120. Details from Noel Boustred on 07903913786.

Steve Larkin

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