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Daily Telegraph

Daily Telegraph

Malcolm Pein's daily chess column is available at the Telegraph's web site. You need to register, which is free. The daily chess column can be found by clicking the "Chess Club" link in the Arts section.

This article is used on the 4NCL web site with permission.

The 4NCL Division one table has an unfamiliar look as Guildford ADC are not at the head of it. The defending champions and hot favourites were held to a draw in the third round by Cambridge University and this allowed Betsson.com to take the lead.

Stung into action, Guildford ADC took it out on Northwest Eagles the following day with a 7.5-0.5 win but Betsson stayed ahead by defeating the ADs.

Betsson.Com - 8
Guildford-ADC 1 - 7
Barbican 4NCL 1 - 7
Guildford-ADC 2 - 6
The ADs - 4
Hilsmark Kingfisher 1 - 4
Barbican 4NCL 2 - 4
Wood Green - 3
Cambridge University 1 - 3
Richmond - 1
North West Eagles 1 - 1
Slough Sharks 1 - 0

The next round of matches will be held at Wokefield Park over the weekend of the 12th and 13th of January but a change in the standings is unlikely. The real battle will probably take place over the May Bank Holiday when Betsson take on Guildford’s second and first teams in successive rounds.

The star performer for Betsson was Polish WGM Iweta Rajlich who defeated GM Mark Hebden and then on the Sunday, GM Matthew Turner.

I Rajlich - M Hebden
4NCL Division 1 Birmingham (3.1)
Cambridge University – Guildford ADC
King’s Indian Petrosian

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.Nf3 0–0 6.h3 e5 7.d5 a5 8.Bg5 (The favourite line of the legendary world champion Tigran Petrosian. The aim of White's setup is to keep Black's counterplay under control) 8...Na6 9.Be2 Nc5 10.Nd2 Bd7 11.Nb3!? Na4 (11...b6 is another standard response. Black has no reason to fear an exchange on c5 as he gets the b file for counterplay.) 12.Nxa4 Bxa4 13.Bd3 Qe8 14.g4 Nd7 (Black begins his standard King's Indian counter with f7-f5) 15.Bc2 f5 16.Be3 (A surprise, one would have expected 16.gxf5 gxf5 17.Rg1) 16...fxe4 17.Nd2 Bxc2 18.Qxc2 (White's idea is leave Black with a passively placed dark squared bishop while her knight dominates on e4) 18...c6 19.dxc6 bxc6 20.Nxe4 Nf6?! (Hebden decides to sacrifice a pawn as White does not have a totally safe haven for her king but the position is a little deceptive for example if 20...Qe6 21.Rd1 d5 22.cxd5 cxd5 23.Qb3 Nf6 24.Nxf6+ Qxf6 25.Qxd5+ Kh8 26.0–0 Qh4 27.Kg2 and Black is 'fishing' for compensation) 21.Nxd6 Qb8 22.0–0–0! (Although c5 also looks good) 22...a4 23.Ne4 Rf7 (23...a3 24.b3 Nxe4 25.Qxe4 Qb4 26.Kb1 Qc3 27.Qc2 is quite safe) 24.Rd2 Qb4 25.a3 Qa5 (Black's compensation is clearly inadequate so White starts to attack) 26.g5 Nd5! 27.Rhd1! (27.cxd5 cxd5 28.Nc5 d4 is good for Black) 27...Nf4 28.h4 Ne6 29.Rd6 Nd4 30.Bxd4 exd4 31.c5 Qa6 (Black's only hope is to play d4-d3 to open the diagonal for the bishop but he never gets the time) 32.h5 gxh5 33.Nf6+ Bxf6 34.gxf6 Raf8 35.R6xd4 Rxf6 36.Rg1+ Kh8 37.Rd7 1–0




Final position after 37.Rd7 checkmate is forced as 37…Rf7 is met by 38.Rxf7 Rxf7 39.Qc3+

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