On Wednesday October 17th the Reivers faced a Morpeth B side weakened by two absentees. The Reivers were strengthened by the inclusion of Jeremy Handley, drafted in given that up to ten of the Reivers’ squad were unavailable! The line-up was
1. Les Whittle (148) v Jeremy Handley ((151)
2. James Chadwick (135) v Phil Taylor (126)
3. Dennis Patterson (126) v Alex Ashworth (113)
4. Harry Robinson (116) v Malcolm Reid (110)
5. Dave Watson (107) v Steve Larkin (107)
A close match was in prospect and so it proved. Phil was one of the first to finish and chalked up an impressive win. His match report appears elsewhere on the site. 0-1 Alex was involved in an advance variation of the French which ended up with an endgame involving a lot of pawns on both sides locking each other out. 0.5-1.5. Malcolm screamed out of the blocks and soon had a 3 pawn advantage. A win looked assured until … he blundered his queen! 1.5-1.5. Steve likewise cruised to an early advantage of two pawns, but then played much too passively, getting himself into awful difficulties on the kingside before being completely outplayed in the enggame. 2.5-1.5. Jeremy’s game went to the wire. He had the initiative for much of the game but Les was resourceful in defence. With Jeremy pressing and very little time left on either clock, Les offered a draw which Jeremy accepted. Subsequent analysis suggested that Jeremy might have had a mate in two! 3-2. This was a match the Reivers could and should have won, but then we don’t really want promotion, do we?