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Archive for the ‘Monarchs’ Category

Monarchs v HB

Posted by dwhump3yahoocouk on March 27, 2018

Played on Thursday 22 Mar-18, we saw the Monarchs taking on the league leaders Haydon Bridge at home. Due to lack of players in the Tynedale club, we had to recruit some outside help. Ian Mackay, captain of the Haydon Bridge club, was kind enough to loan us Damian Rudge. As things turned out, possibly not one of his better decisions!

Having lost to the Austins on the 20th Mar , the Monarchs were thirsting for blood ( AB negative goes down particularly well…..with a nice bottle of chianti!!)

The line-up for the monarchs was as follows:-

Board 1- Pete Chrichton (h/c 3)

Board 2- Derek Blair (h/c 5)

Board 2- Dave Humphreys (h/c 7)

Board 4- Damian Rudge (h/c 9)

Club and team stalwart Pete, with black,  faced off against long term sparring partner, Ian Mackay. These two are very evenly matched, and have done battle many times before. Ian opened with a classic left hook, 1.c4, the English Opening. A flank opening, it it the fourth most popular opening in modern master play. White stakes his claim to the center by grabbing control of the d5 square from the wing [ almost like a Sicilian with colours reversed]. Although the opening can go off into strictly English byways, it is most often used as a trans-positional device that can lead to the Queens Gambit, Nimzo-Indian or Grunfeld, giving the opening a high degree of flexibility.(Ref:-Wikipedia)

Keeping his cards very close to his chest, Pete’s report of the game was  brief and to the point. He sacked a pawn early on, getting some good compensation. Improving his position, he was able to regain the pawn,and, through a clever tactical manoeuvre, won a further pawn. At this stage, there was much reduced material, and, due to some stubborn defense from Ian, Pete was unable to convert his material plus to a win. A draw was therefore agreed.

Derek, with white, banged heads with Phil Walters. Play opened 1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nc6, this looked like a Chigorin variation without the 3.c4 thrust. Both sides developed their queen bishops to active squares; Derek to f4 and Phil to g4. Derek played actively in the center, while Phil grabbed the b2 pawn with his queen on move 12. All this resulted in Derek’s pawn structure being severely compromised, with doubled e-pawns and isolated pawns on a2 and c3. Derek, in his usual aggressive style, decided to sack a knight for two pawns, in order to get control of the, now, fully open b-file. By move 28, after an attempted king-side pawn storm by Derek, the pawn structure had changed dramatically. The pawn count at this point was 4-6 in black’s favour, but, black’s extra pawns were now doubled, and isolated on c4 and c5. In addition, black had doubled f-pawns on f5 and f7 which were on the half-open f-file. A queen/knight combination can be deadly. Black started to manoeuvre his queen and knight to more active squares, and by move 34, had succeeded in netting white’s e5-pawn. The queens came off by move 40, leaving Phil with a very active knight on c3, and rook on f8, versus Derek’s bad bishop on f2, hemmed in by pawns on g3 and f3, neither of which could advance due to Phil’s pawn on f5, and inactive rook. At move 42, Derek tried a desperate sack of his rook for one of Phil’s c-pawns, which had started to inch their way ominously down the board. Alas, it was to no avail. Phil advanced his leading c-pawn to the 2nd rank and managed to pull off a knight fork of Derek’s king and bishop. Moving the king to cover the bishop would have allowed the c-pawn to queen, so Derek was forced to resign at move 42.

Playing on board 3, I crossed swords with Tom Bradford for the second time this season. Having lost my away game to him last December, with the white pieces, I was determined to do better with the black. Tom also went for the English opening. I assayed the Kings Indian Defence set-up. White transposed into the classical KID arrangement with his knight on f3 and pawns on e4, d4, and c4, and his king bishop on e2. White will try to gain space in the center and black tries to hit back with either the …e5 or …c5 counter strike. After exchanges on d5, I established a pawn on e5. This shortened the range of my fianchettoed bishop on g7 but gave me the excellent d6 square for my knight, which was free of any pawn attack. Tom forced open the f-file and gained control of it with his rook. However, I had control of all possible access squares making it impossible for him to invade my position. Meanwhile, play shifted to the queenside where I had established a 3-2 pawn majority. Move 23 saw Tom invade on my weak a7 square with his queen, forking my rook, on b8, and my a6-pawn, but she was a lone raider without support. I defended my rook, he took the pawn, but this allowed me to force the exchange of queens. My feeling was that, if I could drive away his c3 knight, I could get back the pawn by attacking his a and b pawns down the now, half open a-file. Sadly for Tom, when I attacked his knight, he played it to the undefended a4-square, right in the firing line of my queen bishop. Having been in this situation before, when a stronger player leaves a piece en-prise, you have to ask is it a brilliant sacrifice or blunder? On this occasion……………..it was a blunder!! My game plan from then on was simple; exchange down to a winning endgame. This I was able to do, and, when I got my passed e-pawn to the 3rd rank to support both my bishop and rook, and Tom’s king was trapped on the first rank, he was unable to avert the further loss of material, and sportingly conceded the game on move 40.

Our guest team member Damian, with white, did battle against clubmate Christine Moorcroft. He opened with 1.e4 and Christine responded with the Sicilian defence 1…c5. With 2.d4, it looked like Damian might be going for the Smith-Morra gambit, where, after 2…cxd4, white plays 3.c3 offering a pawn in exchange for rapid development. However, Damian went for 3.Qxd4. This allows black to gain and important tempo with 3…Nc6, which Christine played. Although not very fashionable, I have 88 master games in my database where this line has been played. However, white only scored 29% wins. In dragon-esque style, Christine fianchettoed her king bishop and opted for short castling. Play continued with both sides manoeuvring for central control. The d file was opened, and Christine doubled her rooks there. Damian, after establishing a 3-2 queenside pawn majority, decided to play on the queeside with a push to c4. At move 30, I think that Christine must have missed the pawn fork that hit her queen and rook when Damian pushed on to c5. At move 34, Damian decided to give back a little material by sacking the exchange. I’m not sure what he had in mind here. Eventually, by move 50, Damian had rook, knight and 5 pawns against Christine’s rook and 5 pawns, all on the king side, although she had doubled e-pawns on e5 and e6. She managed to win Damian’s a-pawn, but, with his active rook behind her own pawns, she could not avoid the loss of more material and resigned at move 56.

This win must have been a sweet one for Damian as he was giving away the maximum of 3 handicap points to Christine, and I had no hesitation in naming him the man of the match! This also concluded the Monarchs games for this season. It was also my first season as joint captain, along with Bruce Reed, and, on a personal note, I would like to thank all members of the Monarchs, both regulars and guests, for their support, and it was great to finish the season on such a high note. Long may it continue into next season. Have a great summer everyone!!

Dave Humphreys

 

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Austins v Monarchs

Posted by dwhump3yahoocouk on March 23, 2018

AUSTINS V MONARCHS

The line-up for the postponed Austins v Monarchs match was as follows:-

Board 1-Pete Chrichton (h/c 3)

Board 2-Derek Blair (h/c 5)

Board 3-Dave Humphreys (h/c 7)

Board 4-Damian Rudge (h/c 9)

Sadly, due to a mis-communication, Damian was a no show, so the remaining three made their way to Hayton and the Stone Inn to take on the Austins.

Pete, with white, was up against George Glover (rated 143). Opening with 1.e4, George responded with the Caro Kann. The opening is named after the English player Horatio Caro and the Austrian Marcus Kann who analysed it in 1886. It is considered to be a ‘semi-open’ system like the Sicillian and the French, although it is thought to be more solid and somewhat less dynamic than either of them. It can often lead to a better endgame for black due to his better pawn structure. Pete reports that some tactical opportunities were missed on both sides and a draw was agreed, which both players felt, was a fair result.( Ref:- Wikipedia)

Derek, with black, faced Bill Burgess (rated 114). Bill opened with 1.e4 and Derek replied with 1…c5, the Sicilian, the most popular and successful reply. However, Derek chose an atypical central pawn configuration resembling a Stonewall-like setup, with pawns on c5, d6, and e5. The middle game revolved around competing, kingside attacks. However, Derek made too many weakening pawn moves, and, when he castled short, Bill was the first to take advantage, forcing the win of a knight on move 22. The queens came off at move 24. Following a common idea, Bill sort to make the most of his material advantage with further exchanges and steered the game into a rook+bishop+6 pawns against black’s rook+3 pawns endgame. Move 45 saw Bill weave a mating net with rook and bishop, forcing Derek’s resignation.

I played white against an old sparring partner, John Lydon (rated 107). I’ve been studying the Colle System this season, but, I have to say that my results with it have not exactly been spectacular! The system was introduced by the Belgian master Edgard Colle in the 1920’s, and further developed by George Koltanowski. However, I thought I’d stick with it in the hope that my understanding of if would improve. The Colle is more or less the Slav system with colours reversed. White creates a triangle of pawns on c3, d4, and e3, castles short, and he must try and prepare the important pawn break e4, to free his queen bishop. Sadly, there are a number of ways that black can get control over e4 and completely prevent white’s idea! The game then tends to turn down Queens Gambit declined lines. Such was the case here. Black managed to occupy e4 with his knight on move 6. Black opted for a Stonewall formation and the position transposed into a sort of Dutch Defence set-up. I pushed through the center, trying to take advantage of black’s king, which, by move 13, still had not castled. Bill brought his queen out to c6, on the same diagonal as his king!! I saw the chance to force the gain of material. With the duel threat of pinning his queen and forking two minor pieces, Bill sacked his bishop for my h2-pawn. This weakened my kingside as now, both the f and h-files were open and he still had the battery of queen and bishop on the a8-h1 diagonal plus a 3-1 pawn majority. He was able to get good compensation for his piece and managed to generate a winning kingside attack, that led to him forking my king and knight as my clock ran out!! (Ref:-Wikipedia)

With one game defaulted, the final result was and Austins win, 27-17 on handicap.

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Angels v Monarchs 04 Jan 2018

Posted by dwhump3yahoocouk on January 5, 2018

The Angels v Monarchs South Tyne league game was played at the Tynedale Chess club on the 4Jan18. The Monarchs were the clear underdogs, but came through as worthy winners 15-19 on handicap.

The line-up saw Tim Wrigley(b) (h/c 2) taking on Pete Crichton(w) (h/c 3) on board 1. These two have played each other many hundreds of times in the past and know each other’s styles intimately. Pete opened with 1.d4 and Tim replied with a Schmid Benoni. Play goes 1.d4 e6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 exd5 4. cxd5 d6. White gains space in the center and black tries to push his queenside majority. However, Tim admitted that he made an error with the move order and elected instead for a kingside attack. The early middlegame saw Pete managing to force the exchange of black’s central pawns, and capturing black’s c5 pawn with a fork on Q and R, winning the exchange. However, the effort left Pete’s pieces somewhat uncoordinated, allowing Tim to make a double attack on knight, with a pawn and rook with his queen, allowing him to quickly regain the lost material. This was pretty much the pattern for the game. It was tit-for-tat until the resulting queen+rook+pawn endgame was sportingly agreed drawn.

This is the position after Tim (black) played e4

PC v TW after 31 ...e4

On board 2, Derek Harris(w)(h/c 3) faced off against one of the doyens of the Monarchs team, Derek Blair(b) (h/c 5). We saw DH open with another 1.d4 and DB responded with the flexible 1…Nf6. Play can go down a variety of channels from here; Queens gambit; Nimzo indian; Benoni; or Kings Indian Defense to name but a few. Black chose a Kings’s Indian setup with white opting to fianchetto his king bishop. By move 9, both queens had been exchanged on b6, a rarely seen line in master play, giving DB a half-open a-file at the expense of a slight weakening of his queenside pawns. With his central pawns giving him more space however, DH was able to force open the long white diagonal and eventually invade the black position through the center, with rook, bishop and knight coordinating nicely to attack the weakened, black pawns, which eventually forced black’s resignation.

On board 3, club chairman Steve Larkin(b)(h/c 4) took on his old sparring partner Bruce Reed(w) (h/c 5). Play started with 1.c4 the so called English opening. According to Wikipedia, the English is the fourth most popular opening in master play. In hypermodern style, white stakes a claim in the center from the queens wing. The opening is often used to transpose into a number of other lines. Steve opted for the sharp response 1…e5, going into a reversed Sicilian setup. Both players castled kingside. The c-file was opened, and Steve built up some strong pressure with his queen and both rooks along that highway. However, in his efforts to gain space on the kingside, Steve had left his king somewhat exposed. Although he went on to  generate some lethal looking pressure along the a7-g1 diagonal, Bruce, maintaining his Buddah-like serenity, dodged and ducked the blows, took advantage of a slight lapse in concentration by black, and was able to penetrate the black position with his queen, supported by his well posted bishop on b3. Trapped in the middle of the board, with vital escape squares cut off by his own pieces, black’s king became ensnared in a fine mating net, forcing his resignation.

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Friars v Monarchs

Posted by dwhump3yahoocouk on November 8, 2017

The match was played at the Stone Inn in Hayton on 7th November.  The Friars started out with a 4 point handicap deficit of 20-24. So they had to win 3 out of the 4 games to win the match. It was an overwhelming win for the Friars, 34-26 on handicap which translates to 3.5 to 0.5.
The line-up for the Monarchs was:-
1) Pete Crichton.
2) Derek Blair.
3) Dave Humphreys.
4) Damian Rudge.

Pete (w)(143) was up against Alan Hiatt (b) (126). The opening chosen was the Old Indian Defense.This opening is distinguished from the King’s Indian Defense by Black developing his king’s bishop on e7 rather than the fianchetto at g7. Although considered sound, the bishop on e7 tends to be less active than on the long diagonal (Ref:- Wikipedia).
The game quickly turned down a tactical labyrinth. Pete and Alan wrestled for possession of Ariadne’s thread! Sadly for Pete, Alan got there first and was able to navigate his way through the maze with greater precision, forcing Pete’s resignation.

Derek (b)(112) faced Mike Byrne (w) (123). From what little I saw of the game, it turned into a drawish looking rook + bishop + pawn endgame. Then, with both players desperately short of time, there was a flurry of exchanges that simplified the game down to a king + pawns v king + pawns. White had a pawn on h6, blocked by a black pawn on h7. There were 3 vs 3 pawns on the king-side, but Derek’s were more advanced. With Derek’s king on d4, blocked by Mike’s on f5, the dying seconds of the game became a race to see who could get the first queen. Mike won by 2 moves, at which point Derek had connected, passed pawns on b7 and a6. After a few, desperate check’s to gain time, the game was agreed drawn as the flags fell! Our thanks go to Derek for preventing a total whitewash!

Dave(w) (82) took on Drew Millar (b) (102). Dave faced, for the first time, what amounted to a reversed Scandinavian Defense when his 1.d4 was met with 1…e5. If black gambits a pawn, it is generally good practice to accept it. The trick is not to try to hold on to it! After 2. dxe5 Nc6 3.Nf6 Qe7 4.Bf4?…Dave walked right into 4…Qb4+, which leads to the forced loss of material as early as move 9! In order to make the score sheet slightly less embarrassing, he hung on for as long as he could, blundering 2 further pawns along the way, and resigned on move 24.

Damian (b)(51) battled it out with Mike Hodgkinson (w)(85). Damian’s game looked fairly even in the king+rook+bishop+pawns endgame. However, with a forced sequence of exchanges, Mike was able to invade Damian’s position on the king-side to wipe out his pawns, giving him a pair of connected passed pawns on the f and g files. Damian, ever the stalwart battler, refused to give in as first one, then the other of Mike’s pawns both achieved royal status. Desperately hoping for a stalemate, as the flags on the clocks began their inevitable rise along the hour hand, alas, it was not to be, and Damian was mated in short order.

Lets hope that the Monarchs can rise to the occasion on their next meeting with the Friars.

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Monarchs v Austins

Posted by dwhump3yahoocouk on November 4, 2017

The Monarchs were struggling to find a 4-man team this time around. So, it was agreed to field two, 3-man teams. The Monarchs line up, for the match played on the 2nd Nov, was as follows:-

Board 1 – Pete Crichton (143) v George Glover (143)
Board 2 -Derek Blair (112) v Bill Burgess (114)
Board 3 – Dave Humphreys (82) v John Lydon (107)

After three, hard fought games, the Monarchs emerged victorious, winning 23-17 on handicap.
Pete, after reaching a drawn bishop+knight+pawn against bishop+knight+pawn endgame, sadly lost a pawn and, after the bishops came off, was unable to hold the resulting position. A lesson for the rest of us to study our engames!

Derek went in for an unorthadox queen-pawn opening. Both sides castled queenside. Bill gave up two minor pieces for rook and pawn, creating an interesting imbalance of material in the position. But, after a very tactical game, Derek overcame his opponent in fine style.

Dave, who was giving away two handicap points, assayed the Kings Indian defense for the first time in serious play. Playing for a kingside attack, all was going well until a mixture of tunnel vision and hallucination resulted in him blundering his queen away on move 26. He was able to get knight and rook for the queen, and, as his remaining pieces were far more active, managed to snare his opponent in a mating net, forcing his resignation on move 37.

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Two Matches in Corbridge

Posted by Tim W on April 7, 2017

Two matches played in Corbridge last night, both were drawn 2-2, but lost on handicap.

Played at Corbridge Thu 6 Apr 2017
Angels h/c res res h/c Austins
Tim Wrigley 2 2 2 2 George Glover
Alex Ashworth 3 2 2 5 Bill Burgess
Steve Larkin 4 4 0 5 Bill Hardwick
Peter Booker 6 0 4 6 John Lydon
15 8 8 18
23 26

 

Played at Corbridge Thu 6 Apr 2017
Monarchs h/c res res h/c Friars
Gary Murphy 1 4 0 4 Alan Hiatt
Derek Blair 4 0 4 4 Camus Millar
Malcolm Reid 5 0 4 6 Drew Millar
Bruce Reed 5 4 0 8 Mike Hodgkinson
15 8 8 22
23 30

 

 

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Friars v Monarchs

Posted by Tim W on March 29, 2017

 

Played at The Stone Inn, Hayton Tue 28 Mar 2017
Friars H/c res res H/c Monarchs
Alan Hiatt 4 0 4 3 Peter Crichton
Mike Byrne 4 4 0 4 Derek Blair
Drew Millar 6 4 0 5 Bruce Reed
Mike Hodgkinson 8 4 0 8 Dave Humphreys
22 12 4 20
34 24

 

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Angels v Monarchs

Posted by Tim W on March 10, 2017

 

Corbridge Parish Hall – Thu 9 Mar 2017
Angels H/c Res Res H/c Monarchs
Tim Wrigley 2 4 0 3 Peter Crichton
Alex Ashworth 3 4 0 4 Derek Blair
Steve Larkin 4 2 2 5 Bruce Reed
Peter Booker 6 0 4 8 Dave Humphreys
15 10 6 20
25 26

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Monarchs v Austins

Posted by Tim W on February 21, 2017

 

Played at Corbridge Parish Hall Thu 16 Feb 2017
Monarchs H/c res Res H/c Austins
Gary Murphy 1 4 0 5(4) Bill Hardwick
Derek Blair 4 0 4 5 Bill Burgess
Bruce Reed 5 2 2 6 John Lydon
Dave Humphreys 8 4 0 9 Alan Little
18 10 6 24
28 30

 

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Monarchs v Haydon Bridge

Posted by northman on January 14, 2017

Monarchs lost a closely fought match on Thursday. The results were:

Peter Crichton v Ian Mackay 1/2

Derek Blair v Tom Bradford 0/1

Malcolm Reid v Christine Moorcroft 1/2

Dave Humphreys v Damian Rudge 1/0

Even over the board, Haydon Bridge won 30/28 after application of the handicaps

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