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European Club Cup
Round 1 update

There were no surprise results in the first round of the menís competition. Barbican 4NCL had anticipated playing Paris NAO, but after some withdrawals (there is now a total of 45 competitors) they instead found themselves just inside the top half of the field and played the Irish team Phibsboro. They ran out 5.5 - 0.5 winners, with the Irish draw coming from FM Sam Brady on top board against Jonathan Parker.

Their reward is a second round pairing with the all GM side Beer Sheva. This is the Israeli team with whom we managed a heroic draw last year, and it will be fascinating to see how both sides visit this rematch. The Barbican 4NCL side is substantially stronger than it was last year, though it is still clearly outrated by the Israelis.

Nidum Liberals and Cardiff were among the vast majority of lower ranked teams who took a bad beating on the first day, but again Charles Cobb gave Cardiff something to cheer about. The player who beat Jorg Hickl in the first round last year started his campaign this year by beating another German GM, A Naiditsch.

Gary Kasparov perhaps surprised a few by playing in the very first round. He was not risking his rating though: his victim, Chuchelov, is rated over 2600 even though his Belgian team mates are all below 2300! Perhaps Rochade Eupen should have started a diplomatic incident by dropping Chuchelov (either as match tactics or just to see the expression on Kasparov`s face), but they played their best team and lost 6-0 in any event.

Jonathan Rogers
President of Barbican 4NCL Chess Club

Barbican 4NCL's participation in this competition is supported by the Friends of Chess.

Division 1

Pride and Prejudice
Barbican 4NCL 1
White Rose 1
Guildford-A&DC 1
Cambridge Univ. 1
The ADs
Barbican 4NCL 2
Oxford 1
Pandora's Box Grantham
S. Wales Dragons
Guildford-A&DC 2
Poisoned Pawns 1
Jutes of Kent

Division 2

Sambuca Sharks
Warwickshire Select 1
e2e4.org.uk 1
Barbican 4NCL Youth
AMCA Dragons
Kings Head
Poisoned Pawns 2
Anglian Avengers
Wessex 1
Celtic Tigers 1
Bristol 1
White Rose 2
Brown Jack
Guildford-A&DC 3
FCA Solutions 1

Division 3

Rhyfelwyr Essyllwg
Sambuca Black Sheep
Cambridge Univ. 2
Wessex 2
Warwickshire Select 2
KJCA Kings
FCA Solutions 2
The Full Ponty
Sussex Smart Ctls.
e2e4.org.uk 2
Nottinghamshire 1
Nottinghamshire 2
Oxford 2
AMCA Rhinos
Braille Chess Assoc.
AMCA Hippos
Glos. Gambits
Bristol 2
KJCA Knights
Guernsey Mates
Bristol 3
e2e4.org.uk 3
Beauty and the Beasts
Celtic Tigers 2
Oxford 3
Guildford-A&DC 4
AMCA Cheetahs