Poole A vs Poole B (The Empire Strikes Back?)
Well this has caused some confusion hasn’t it? Who should do the match reports for local derbys? Perhaps a report from each captain? I don’t know, but I have been asked to make a few comments.
Prior to these matches there has been much debate (mostly at Eric’s excellent New Year Party) as to the relative strengths of the A and B Teams. My own personal opinion is that, if I were an opposing captain, I would not like to be facing either team at present and, as many have said, this goes to the heart of the strength in depth these days at Poole Chess Club. Blimey, makes me proud!
So on to the match…
B4: Dragi v Toby (w). Now I have to tell you a little story here by way of introduction. When I was young (I never needed anyone… and making love was just for fun… STOP THAT) I played only to avoid losing. I played Giuoco Ultrapianissimo, never considered moves like h4… for goodness sake I played the Colle System! So when I turned up at Poole CC after a thirty year hiatus, I was looking for more excitement (although not too much, at my age, of course). And then I saw Toby play e4 (Fischer: ‘Best by Test’) and roll out an Evans Gambit. Next game a Wing Gambit against a Sicilian. This is what it is all about I thought ! I want to play like that (well, perhaps not the Wing Gambit, we all have limits, and Toby had shown me how to bust it from the Black side). End of Side Story. And so it was great to see (speaking as a neutral) Toby play a cracking game saccing Bxh7 and then Rxf7 with the crafty rook lift Rh3 helping to finish off. Bad luck Dragi, but as we said afterwards, when playing the Open Sicilian on the Black side, getting mated that way is an occupational hazard.
B1: Oscar (w) v Chip. Well this game went as expected with Chip’s usual obdurate d6 g6 etc setup, until g4 appeared about move six. Well Chip doesn’t look a gift pawn in the mouth and off it went (looked risky to me). Opposite side castling ensued and White seemed to have a good initiative, which seemed to remain the case until the first time control. More later.
B2: Mike v Serg (w). A Leningrad Dutch met d4 and Black seemed to have an edge (I didn’t see much of this game so I may well be wrong). Dont forget that we welcome all constructive criticism on all match reports, so please send your comments to email@example.com. More later.
B3: Myself (w) v John. Well I needed revenge (in the nicest sense of course) for the appalling miscarriage of justice in the previous match. John is very well prepared these days, which isn’t surprising as his middle name is Kimovich (It’s true! Ask him!), and so he cleverly avoided my pet GPA Bb5 lines with an early a6. In fact he played a lot of early moves, the first six of which were: c5/e6/d5/a6/b5/b4 so he had a lot of space on the Queenside. After the game we felt that Black looked good for quite a while, although Fritz analysis suggests White was never worse. The bad thing about putting games through a computer is that is shows you the winning lines that you missed over the board… like the one clear winning line that I missed over the board (to be fair we were both short of time), well, I did see the line but also saw ‘ghost’ perpetuals for Black. Despite my best attempts, I couldnt find a way to convert a tricky (winning I think) Queen and pawns ending in the last fifteen minutes against good defensive play by John. A draw was hastily agreed when Black found a perpetual with 12 seconds each left on the clocks.
Well, you can see that my attention had been on my tough game and so I only had fleeting glances of developments on the top two boards. It seems that Oscar had pushed very hard, but in the time scramble, Chip had R+2p vs R+1p, at which point Oscar’s ‘flag fell’. I am not sure if I was imagining it but Mike seemed to be a piece down in a time scramble ending which concluded with a draw agreed. The top three boards all finished within a minute of each other and with seconds left.
When the dust had settled, 3-1 to Poole B. Well done guys. Looking forward to a League 1-2!!! But who on top?
And so to the bar for a multi-team debrief.
PS. I haven’t even mentioned the excitement of the Club Championship draw immediately prior to the match. Chip turned up with all the correct paraphernalier, very impressive. Bournemouth Echo declined at the last minute. I was jostling the balls, but then Eric said I had to draw the first piece of paper from the hat. So exciting. It was like the FA Cup third round draw, but without celebrities and smug Italian Managers.
January 8, 2018