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2002/03 season - Weekend 4
Rounds 7 and 8 of the 4NCL took place at the Telford Moat House over the weekend of April 12th and 13th. Hard-fought matches in all four divisions leave all still to play for in the final three rounds next month.
In Division 1, Wood Green 1 continued to sweep all before them – this time chalking up wins against The ADs 1 and Slough 1. Now installed as 20-1 on (!) favourites for the title, they still face a critical final round game against second placed Guildford-ADC 1. At the other end of the table, 8 out of the 12 teams could still go down, but South Wales Dragons 1, Bristol 1 and Perceptron Youth will be feeling most of the heat.
Three teams share the lead in Division 2: North West Eagles 1, Numerica 3Cs 1 and Warwickshire Select, with the first-named holding a slim three-point lead on match points. There are three promotion places to next season's top division.
Division 3 could hardly be closer, with Wessex 2 holding a narrow edge over Numerica 3Cs 2 and North West Eagles 2. With these three teams still to play each other, fourth-placed Milton Keynes may fancy their chances in the final sprint to the finish.
Division 4 has now split into two groups for the final rounds. There is a three-horse race for the title, with Metropolitan holding a single point lead over Hilsmark Kingfisher and Wood Green 3. Hilsmark showed their determination to take the title by becoming the first Division 4 side to field a grandmaster in their ranks. This helped them to a convincing win over Wood Green 3, though GM Aaron Summerscale was unable to overcome WG’s Ron Watson.
The final rounds of the season will take place at West Bromwich on the May Bank holidays. Divisions 1 and 2 are on 3rd/4th/5th May, Division 3 on 24th/25th/26th May and Division 4 on 24th/25th May.
Richard Pert vs. Mark Hebden
Betsson.com vs. Guildford-ADC 1, board 3
Division 1, round 7
1. d4 Nf6 2. Bg5 d5 3. e3 c5 4. Bxf6 gxf6 5. dxc5 Qa5+ 6. Nc3 e6 7. Qh5 Bd7 8. O-O-O Bxc5 9. Qh6 Be7 10. Qg7 Rf8 11. Qxh7 Nc6 12. Nge2 Rc8 13. e4 d4 14. Nxd4 Nxd4 15. Rxd4
15... Rxc3 16. bxc3 Qxc3 17. Rd3 Ba3+ 18. Kd1 Qa1+ 19. Ke2 Bb5 20. Qh5 a6 21. g4 Ke7 22. Kf3 Bxd3 23. cxd3 Rc8 24. Bg2 Qd4 25. Re1 Rc2 26. Re3 Bc1 27. Qh4 Bxe3 28. fxe3 and White resigns.
Richard Bates vs. James Cobb
Richmond vs. South Wales Dragons 1, board 1
Division 1, round 7
1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3 e6 3. c4 d5 4. g3 c5 5. cxd5 exd5 6. Nc3 Nc6 7. Bg2 Be7 8. O-O O-O 9. Bg5 cxd4 10. Nxd4 h6 11. Be3 Re8 12. Qb3 Na5 13. Qc2 Bg4 14. Rfd1 Rc8 15. h3 Bh5 16. Nf5 Bb4 17. g4 Bxc3 18. bxc3 Bg6 19. Bd4 Nc6 20. Qb2 Bxf5 21. gxf5 Nxd4 22. Rxd4 Ne4
23. Rd3 Qf6 24. Bxe4 dxe4 25. Re3 b6 26. Qb5 Re5 27. Qd7 Rd8 28. Qxa7 Rxf5 29. Rxe4 Qxc3 30. Rf1 Qxh3 and White resigns.
Graham Burgess vs. Lorin D'Costa
Bristol 1 vs. Barbican-4NCL 2, board 3
Division 1, round 7
1. d4 d5 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 c6 4. Nc3 Nf6 5. Bg5 h6 6. Bh4 Nbd7 7. e3 Be7 8. Bd3 O-O 9. O-O b6 10. cxd5 exd5 11. Ne5 Nxe5 12. dxe5 Ng4 13. Bg3 Bh4 14. Bf4 Qe8 15. Qa4
15... g5 16. g3 gxf4 17. exf4 Bd8 18. h3 b5 19. Qd1 Nxe5 20. fxe5 Qxe5 21. Re1 Qf6 22. Re3 Qg7 23. Ne2 Bb6 24. Rf3 Bxh3 25. g4 Bxg4 26. Rg3 f5 27. Qd2 f4 28. Nxf4 Qg5 and White resigns.
Dale James vs. John Trevelyan
Numerica 3Cs 1 vs. South Wales Dragons 2,
Division 2, round 7
1. e4 d6 2. d4 e5 3. c3 Be7 4. f4 exf4 5. Bxf4 Bg5 6. Bd2 Bxd2+ 7. Nxd2 Qg5 8. Qe2 Nh6 9. Ngf3 Qg4 10. Qf2 O-O 11. Bd3 Nc6 12. O-O Bd7 13. Rae1 Ne7 14. e5 Nd5 15. h3 Qh5 16. Qg3 f5
17. exd6 f4 18. Qg5 Qxg5 19. Nxg5 Ne3 20. Rf2 cxd6 21. Nxh7 Rfe8 22. Rxf4 Nf7 23. Bg6 Nf5 24. Rxe8+ Rxe8 25. Bxf5 Bxf5 26. Rxf5 Nh6 27. Nf6+ and Black resigns.
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Pride and Prejudice
Barbican 4NCL 1
White Rose 1
Cambridge Univ. 1
Barbican 4NCL 2
Pandora's Box Grantham
S. Wales Dragons
Poisoned Pawns 1
Jutes of Kent
Warwickshire Select 1
Barbican 4NCL Youth
Poisoned Pawns 2
Celtic Tigers 1
White Rose 2
FCA Solutions 1
Sambuca Black Sheep
Cambridge Univ. 2
Warwickshire Select 2
FCA Solutions 2
The Full Ponty
Sussex Smart Ctls.
Braille Chess Assoc.
Beauty and the Beasts
Celtic Tigers 2