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Press Release

2002/03 season
Final Weekend
Divisions 1 and 2

The final 3 rounds of the top 2 divisions were played at the West Bromwich Moat House over the weekend of May 3rd to 5th. The championship, promotion and relegation issues are now all decided.

In Division 1, red-hot favourites Wood Green 1 duly clinched the title with a round to spare. With an emphatic 8-0 defeat of Perceptron Youth, they left no way back for their nearest challengers, Guildford-ADC 1. However Wood Green were not able to maintain their 100% record as they could only draw their final round match with Guildford. Barbican 4NCL 1 pipped long-time front runners Betsson.com for third place.

At the wrong end of the table, there was a nerve-wracking conclusion. Perceptron Youth narrowly failed to secure their division 1 spot for next year. Despite beating South Wales Dragons 1 in the final round, they failed to catch Barbican 4NCL 2 by a single game point. So after a single season in the top flight, Perceptron join the Dragons and Bristol 1 in relegation to division 2.

Division 2 proved to be even closer! For much of the season, the 3 front runners were North West Eagles 1, Numerica 3Cs 1 and Warwickshire Select, and in the end these three sides could only be separated by game points. Going into the last round, the 3Cs held the lead but were up against the tough challenge of Guildford-ADC 2. With the 3Cs narrowly losing the match, the Eagles came up on the rails to take the title. Despite a big win in the last round, Warwickshire Select couldn’t make up their game point deficit and came in third. Still all three teams are deservedly promoted to next year’s top division.

At the bottom, Athenaeum must be cursing their luck. They could only draw with already relegated ADs 2 in the last round and so finished level on both match points and game points with Kings Head. A quick trawl through the league rules showed that such ties are split by the result of the individual match between the teams – and Kings Head had won the round 1 clash. So Athenaeum are down and join the ADs 2 and South Wales Dragons 2 in the drop.

It was a record-breaking season for the 4NCL. For the first time we had 4 Divisions, with about 350 players regularly competing. 6 players managed to chalk up 100 appearances in the league – Simon Ansell (Bristol), Chris Beaumont (Bristol), Paul Littlewood (Wood Green), Gary Quillan (North West Eagles), Gavin Wall (Richmond) and Richard Webb (Wessex). There were an unprecedented number of norms achieved, with Charles Cobb (Bristol) and Adam Hunt (Betsson) reaching the Grandmaster mark, and Stewart Haslinger (Perceptron Youth), Steve Dishman (Barbican), Desmond Tan (Wood Green), Lawrence Trent (Barbican), Lawrence Webb (Richmond) all making an IM result. Congratulations to all!

Selected games

Nigel Short vs. Simon Williams
Wood Green 1 vs. Betsson.com, board 2
Division 1, round 9

1. e4 c5 2. Nc3 Nc6 3. g3 g6 4. Bg2 Bg7 5. d3 d6 6. Nh3 h5 7. O-O Nf6 8. Nd5 Ne5 9. f3 h4 10. g4 Be6 11. Ndf4 Bd7 12. c3 Nc6 13. Rb1 e5 14. Nd5 Nxd5 15. exd5 Ne7 16. f4 Qc8 17. Nf2 f5 18. fxe5 dxe5 19. d6 Nc6

Short vs. Williams

20. Qb3 Be6 21. Qb5 O-O 22. Bg5 e4 23. Qxc5 b6 24. Qe3 Ne5 25. Bxh4 Qd7 26. Bg3 Qxd6 27. gxf5 gxf5 28. dxe4 and Black resigns.

Peter Roberson vs. Jana Bellin
Slough 1 vs. The ADs 1, board 8
Division 1, round 9

1. e4 c5 2. c3 e6 3. d4 d5 4. exd5 exd5 5. Nf3 Nc6 6. Be2 Nf6 7. Bg5 Be6 8. O-O Bd6 9. dxc5 Bxc5 10. Nbd2 h6 11. Bh4 g5 12. Bg3 g4 13. Ne5 h5 14. Nb3 Bb6 15. Bb5 Rc8 16. Nd4 Bxd4 17. Qxd4 h4 18. Nxc6 bxc6

Roberson vs. Bellin

19. Be5 Rh6 20. Ba6 Rb8 21. Qf4 Nd7 22. Qxh6 Nxe5 23. Qh8+ and Black resigns.

James Poulton vs. Keith Arkell
Wessex 1 vs. Numerica 3Cs 1, board 2
Division 2, round 9

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 Bb4+ 4. Nbd2 d5 5. a3 Be7 6. e3 b6 7. Qa4+ c6 8. cxd5 exd5 9. b4 a5 10. b5 c5 11. dxc5 bxc5 12. Ne5 O-O 13. Bb2 Bd6 14. Nc6 Nxc6 15. bxc6 Rb8 16. Bc3 Bc7 17. Be2

Poulton vs. Arkell

17... d4 18. exd4 Nd5 19. Rc1 Re8 20. Kd1 Qg5 21. Bf3 Bg4 22. Bxa5 Ra8 23. Rxc5 Bxa5 24. Qc2 Bxf3+ 25. gxf3 Qg2 and White resigns.

Craig Hanley vs. Anthony Hynes
North West Eagles 1 vs. Warwickshire Select,
board 2
Division 2, round 9

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 f5 4. Nc3 fxe4 5. Nxe4 d5 6. Nxe5 dxe4 7. Nxc6 Qg5 8. Qe2 Nf6 9. f4 Qh4+ 10. g3 Qh3 11. d3 a6 12. dxe4 axb5 13. Qxb5 bxc6 14. Qxc6+ Kf7 15. e5 Bd7 16. Qxc7 Qg2

Hanley vs. Hynes

White resigns.

Click here to go back to index of press information.

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