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Daily Telegraph

Daily Telegraph

Malcolm Pein writes a daily chess column in the Daily Telegraph. This article is used on the 4NCL web site with permission.

The unthinkable happened in the eighth round of the 4Nations Chess League Division 1 as the Championship Pool and Relegation Pool matches began and the leaders and defending champions Guildford A&DC 1 were well beaten by their own second team. Although the second team were outrated by over 100 points a board they scored two wins and suffered no defeats to win the 8 board match 5-3.

Mohammed Tissir of Morocco upset David Howell and John Shaw of Scotland beat Mark Hebden. Team sponsor IM Nigel Povah held GM Danny King to a draw.

Wood Green Hilsmark Kingfisher also has two teams in the top division and there were no upsets in that match as the first team defeated the second team 7-1. The other results in the Championship Pool were: White Rose 1 4-4 Pride and Prejudice; Barbican 4NCL 1 5-3 The Gambit ADs;

In the Relegation Pool Northwest Eagles clearly do not fancy the drop as they destroyed South Wales Dragons 7.5-0.5 even thought the teams were almost identically matched in rating terms. Other results: Bristol 1 2-6 Cambridge University 1; Barbican 4NCL 2 5.5-2.5 Richmond; Betsson.com 5.5-2.5 Sambuca Sharks.

S Fowler - A Martin
4NCL Div 1 (8) Hinckley
Pirc Defence
1.e4 g6 2.d4 Bg7 3.Nc3 d6 4.Nge2 Nf6 5.g3 0-0 6.Bg2 e5 7.h3 Nc6 8.Be3 Bd7 9.Qd2 exd4 10.Nxd4 Re8 (In this type of position White usually castles short and plays to increase his advantage in space but Fowler plays more aggressively) 11.0-0-0!? a6 (Black hastens to create counterplay with b7-b5, 11...Nxd4 12.Bxd4 Bc6 13.Rhe1 is also possible) 12.f4 Na5 13.Qd3 (If 13.b3 c5 14.Nde2 Bc6 and the weakness of d6 is compensated for by the weakness of e4) 13...Rb8 14.Rhe1 (14.g4 b5 15.g5 Nh5 was a sharper try for White but he has a dangerous tactic in mind) 14...b5 15.e5!? dxe5 16.fxe5 Rxe5 17.b4




Position after 17.b4

17...Qe7 (An excellent piece sacrifice but it wasn’t forced. Retreating the knight allows Nc6 but 17...c5! was strong here) 18.bxa5 b4 19.Nb1 c5 20.Nc6 (20.Nf3 Rxe3 21.Qxe3 Qxe3+ 22.Rxe3 Bh6 23.Rde1 Re8 24.Kd2 Nd5 wins for Black) 20...Bxc6 21.Bxc6 Rc8 22.Qxa6 (22.Bf3 c4 23.Qd4 b3) 22...Rxc6! 23.Qxc6 Rxe3 (Without his dark squared bishop, White's king will never be safe) 24.Rf1 Bh6! 25.Nd2 Re6 26.Qc8+ Kg7 27.Kb1 Nd5 (27...Bxd2 28.Rxd2 Re1+ 29.Rd1 Rxf1 30.Rxf1 Ne4 31.a6 Nd2+ 32.Kb2 Qe5+ 33.Kc1 Nxf1 wins) 28.a6 (28.Ne4 Rxe4 29.Rxd5 Re1+ 30.Rxe1 Qxe1+ 31.Kb2 c4 32.Qxc4 Qc1+ 33.Kb3 Qa3# but 30.Rd1 may survive) 28...Nc3+ 29.Kb2 Nxd1+ 30.Rxd1 Qf6+ 31.Kb3 Qc3+ 32.Ka4 Qxc2+ 0-1




Final position after 32...Qxc2+

B Tiller - R McFarland
4NCL (8) Hinckley
1.e4 g6 2.d4 d6 3.c4 Bg7 4.Nc3 Nf6 5.f3 0-0 6.Bg5 c5 7.d5 h6 8.Be3 e6 9.Qd2 exd5 10.cxd5 Kh7 (Natural but imprecise. There are more active moves; 10...Re8 11.Bxh6 Nxe4 12.Nxe4 Qh4+; also 10...h5 anticipates Ng1-e2-g3 and enables Black to seek counterplay with Nf6-h7 and f7-f5 which is probably the best plan) 11.Nge2 Nbd7 12.Ng3 a6 13.a4 Qa5 (b7-b5 is harder to organise after the reply) 14.Ra3! Rb8 (14...b5 15.axb5 hits the queen) 15.Be2 Qd8 16.0-0 Ne8 17.f4 b6 18.Bd3 Nc7 19.e5 (The typical pawn break which releases the potential of the white pieces) 19...c4 20.Bxc4 dxe5 21.f5! b5 22.axb5 axb5 23.d6 bxc4 24.dxc7 Qxc7 25.Nd5 Qd8 26.Ne4 gxf5 27.Rxf5 Bb7 (The computer thinks 27...Nc5! might survive ) 28.Bxh6!




Position after 28.Bxh6!

White wins as all his pieces participate in the attack 28...Bxd5 29.Rh3 f6 (29...Bxe4 30.Bxg7+ Kxg7 31.Qh6+ Kg8 32.Qh8#) 30.Bxg7+ Kg6 (30...Kxg7 31.Rg3+ Kf7 32.Qxd5+ mates) 31.Qxd5 Rb3 32.Rxb3 cxb3 33.Bxf8 Kxf5 34.Nd6+ 1-0

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