Bacchus League – Highcliffe Castles 0 V 4 Poole Bishops

So the Poole Bishops ventured east towards the Highcliffe castles sharing top billing with 7 pts together with Southbourne so all to play for.

The lads were keyed up knowing it was an important match and we managed to recruit Kyzrzstoff to supplement the team very handily. I arrived with Leo and the big K to meet Zander and Harry whom were champing at the task ahead.

After Zander’s grading was increased to 1709 (live rating) he moved to top board with K followed by Leo and Harry, team tactics in place, score sheets ready at the off and biros in hand. Here we go……

I was invited by Richard to have a game (a rare occurance) so I missed the openings and we were into the middle game by the time I turned round to to see how the team was doing. On Bd 1 Zander as cool as you like, full concentration and looking like a seasoned campaigner had 4 options of winning on his next move! Unfortunately for Roger Howell he only had 3 answers – Q A6 did it all and after a very brief reply, the K was toppled and the Bishops went one up. This is the 2nd game running that Zander has sacked (no pun intended) his Q to win a league game – excellent. He is just 12 years old!

On Bd 4 Harry turned round and was gleaming and as I looked at the board he had a winning position with at least an exchange up and extra pawns, but you have to follow through and find all the correct moves. He kept cool, concentration and not without a good fight from Dan he managed to win through, very well done and deserved.  His game is showing real improvement and great to see his determination to win in this type of position when sometimes it is not easy. He’s just 10 years old!

So on Bd 3 Leo was looking comfortable against Andy Hopwood and was a piece up in and end game – R+Kn vs R with a pawn advantage – again you have to keep cool, find the right moves and and finish off. Andy set as many traps as possible and looked determined to fight to the end (credit) but Leo always found the answer in all moves to finish off his opponent, well done. He’s 9 years old and 10th  birthday coming up in March!

So 3-0, and I mentioned to Krzrzstoff the match had already ben won, he had a fairly drawn position against Ron Salinger giving his all for the team. But the Big K, stoic, solid, unfazed, wanting to win, found a way in a tight end game to finish the game and overall match in style to collect his well deserved point.

He will be missed when we returns to Gadansk, Poland in the summer and is pleasure to have at the club.

Its most important to mention the gracious way all the Highcliffe players accepted defeat from these young guns, and also great to see Richard Ursall and Bruce Jenks playing games with them afterwards.

The result is rewarding however the big win on the night is to see the progress of the kids and least also most important is the overall feeling of seeing chess played in the right spirit and enjoyment, win or lose.

The picture below was taken at the recent Hampshire Championships in December when Both Zander and Leo became Hampshire Champions.


Eric Sachs – 23/2/22

February 23, 2022