Summer KO 2015

Having been knocked out of the major KO competition in the first round, Tynedale were duly entered into the Plate competition. They eased their way into the quarter-finals when their opponents from Tynemouth defaulted the match. So on July 6th 2015 they faced a Gosforth IV team at Gosforth. The line-up was as follows:
1. Joe Chan (121) v Jeremy Handley (144)
2. Gary Clarke (108) v Derek Blair (135)
3. Dave Turner (107) v Alex Ashworth (124)
4. Tony Neville (106) v Steve Larkin (107)
Gosforth’s grading total of 442 made them a Minor team while our total of 510 made us an Intermediate team, meaning that we ceded 1.5 points to Gosforth. So to win the match we had to score 3 out of 4. 2.5 would mean that the teams tied on points and Gosforth would go through, given their lower grading total.
All the games were quite protracted affairs, with Jeremy first to finish. With most of the pieces off the board, a race to queen a pawn ensued. Alas, Jeremy had miscalculated, Joe queened first and the game was over. 1-0
Derek and Alex finished pretty much together. Derek got much better initial development than his opponent, went the exchange up and by the endgame was a full rook up and coasted to victory. 1-1
Alex likewise went the exchange up and converted this advantage into a win. 1-2
So the outcome of the match hinged on board 4, which went to the wire. Steve emerged from the middle game a pawn up and proceeded to push his central pawns, but they had a long way to go and Tony’s rook and bishop were very active. Eventually Steve got two linked passed pawns on Tony’s third rank, supported by a rook. A queen and victory looked inevitable but in blithely advancing a pawn Steve left his rook en prise to Tony’s king. That would have turned victory into defeat, both on this board and in the match. Mercifully, Tony didn’t spot this any more than Steve had and a couple of moves later it was mate – phew!! 1-3
So the match was won by the narrowest of margins (3-2.5) and Tynedale find themselves in the semi-finals – and it all hinged on a double oversight!

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Club championship 2014-15

The final of this event will be between last year’s defeated finalist, Tim Wrigley, and Peter Crichton, who has won the title on three previous occasions. It should be a great game!

South Lakes chess congress 2015

Two Tynedale club members took part in this event at Grange over Sands on June 12-14. Both entered the Minor 2 section for players graded 110 and below. There were 33 entries in this section, with Steve Larkin being ranked 8th and Stephen Rowley (who had been given an estimated grade of 95 which was clearly much too high) ranked 16th. Both took half-point byes on the Friday night.

On Saturday morning, Steve L had a fairly straightforward win over Jo Woollard (81) of Sheffield Nomads, though it took him 2 hours and 35 minutes to finish the job.Stephen played Robert Smialek (80) of Aigburgh and was still going strong after 2 and a half hours, with material even and Stephen enjoying a slight spatial advantage. The outcome, a loss for Stephen, was only decided in a time scramble in the last few minutes.

On Saturday afternoon, Steve L had a long game (c3 hours and 20) with Stuart Wood (97) of Kynock. Steve developed a strong attack and was pressing for two-thirds of the game but Stuart, though he dropped a couple of pawns, defended well and took full advantage of weaknesses in Steve’s defensive set-up. In the last 20 minutes, Steve made a series of errors, culminating in the loss of a knight. When Stuart offered a draw, in the belief that that reflected the overall run of play, Steve accepted gratefully, for by then the game was clearly lost. Stephen found himself up against Bill Burgess (107) of Austins, a really tough assignment for him. Blundering his queen early on ensured another loss.

On Sunday morning, Steve L faced Nick Holmes (92) of Teleport Shrewsbury. At one point Nick had 3 pieces en prise simultaneously and Steve felt sure a decisive advantage was coming his way, but a check by Nick transformed the situation into a series of exchanges and the game petered out into a draw after 90 minutes’ play. Meanwhile, Stephen was playing Jo Woollard (81), Steve’s opponent the previous day. Stephen mounted a strong kingside attack but Jo defended stoutly, picked up some loose pieces and went on to win. Even so, Stephen enjoyed the experience.

In the final round, Steve L played Dave Broderick (104) from Newport. Steve sacrificed a bishop for a potential mating attack early on, and Dave had to play very carefully for half a dozen moves and had to sacrifice a knight to see off the attack. Though only 20 moves had been played, over 2 hours had elapsed, at which point Dave offered a draw which Steve accepted, as the fatigue factor was kicking in yet again. So he finished on 3/5 and to his great surprise won a grading prize! Stephen was paired with Raphael Romaya (estimated grade 50), who by this point had played and lost 4 games. After 2 and a quarter hours Stephen was a pawn up and was taking the game to his opponent, but the latter was playing extremely slowly and when I left the venue the outcome was far from clear. What is certain is that Stephen will have leaned a lot from his first ever congress.

Also competing in the Minor 2 section was Tom Bradford of Haydon Bridge. He recorded an impressive 4/5 to share second place. Former Tynedale player Colin Davison competed in the Major event for players graded 170 and below and picked up a grading prize.

Summer KO Tynedale v Forest Hall A

Not a very auspicious start to the Summer KO. We outgraded Forest Hall marginally, so nedeed 2½ out of 4 to win. We failed to trouble the scorer, lost 0-4, and must now defend our plate trophy. Personally, I made two stupid mistakes, first I set the board up the wrong way round, so I played white and Martin played black. By the time we realised the error it was too late to change, but somewhat flustered I played an illegal move, pawn on g4 takes pawn on e5, and was forced by the touch a piece move it rule to actually play g4 to g5. This cost me a good opppurtunity, and Martin outplayed me in a tight ending.

Tynedale                                                            Forest Hall A
Board Colour Name Grade Score Colour Name Grade Score
1 B Tim Wrigley 147 0 W Martin Seeber 157 1
2 W Jeremy Handley 144 0 B Mike Smith 157 1
3 B Derek Blair 135 0 W Sophie Seeber 125 1
4 W Alex Ashworth 124 0 B Josh Grueso 100 1
Total Grade 550 Total Grade 539
Handicap Points       Handicap Points
Total Score   0   Total Score 4