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Long March for B Team

posted 17 Mar 2012, 04:58 by knight moves
It's been a long March for Stafford B, as they have so far suffered a heavy loss in the North Staffs League U130 cup, as well as two disappointing losses in the Wolverhampton League, leaving them second to the bottom of the Wolverhampton League Division 3, with relegation looming. 

The problems started at Stourbridge on March 5th, when we were only able to field a team of 4 players for a 5 board match.  James Topp, playing black lost on board 4 in a game when he unable to prevent white gaining a massive spatial advantage and a passed central pawn.   David Barker on board 5 was able to gain a draw after going out of the book against his opponent’s Sicilian Defence.   Peter Evans drew on board two with the black pieces, trying the Grunfeld defence.  After middle game complications he gained a passed c pawn, and his opponent was forced to sacrifice a piece to remove the pawn.   Carelessness then allowed Stourbridge to recover the piece and a draw resulted.

Ray Hyde, playing White, used his pet line against the King's Indian.  He soon reached a very favourable position in which he won a pawn and gained a lot of space, but sadly missed an obvious way to finish the game on move 25.  His higher-graded opponent managed to unravel his pieces and went into a 4 bishop ending a pawn down but with a superior position.  Ray completely lost the thread in the time scramble and resigned with less than a minute left on the clock. 

Well played to Stourbridge, especially as they had their minds on a Birmingham League cup final to be played later that week.   Final result : Stourbridge B 4 - Stafford B 1


On March 7th, Stafford B met Newcastle in the NS&DCL U130 (Intermediate) Cup.   This was rather a hammering, with a 4½ to ½ loss.  Our only points were gained by Tony Meakin from Rugeley who kindly agreed to help us out in this match.  Thanks to Tony who gained a draw in a game where each tactical complexity was neutralised.

As for the rest of the Stafford team, David Barker lost a piece in the opening and although he fought to the bitter end the loss was inevitable.  Boris Ondrejkovic felt that he lost because he was too concerned with dominating space and allowed his opponent tactical advantage.  Peter Evans began well and had an even position but a premature advance of his C pawn failed, and he lost a pawn.  This permitted his opponent to infiltrate his position with Queen and Rook leading to a mate.  Denis Nesbitt appeared to be doing well on board one, until he lost his queen for a rook.  Well played to Newcastle who will meet Holmes Chapel in the final.


Back in the Wolverhampton League on March 14th, Stafford B had a better game against Wolverhampton B, but still lost to a stronger Wolverhampton team.

Kasik Wozniak won on board one when he took full advantage of an unsound sacrifice by the Wolverhampton skipper.  Peter Evans lost on board 3 in a game where he never was able to develop his pieces properly.  He survived queenside attacks, but was forced to resign as his opponent switched his attention to a kingside pawn advance.  James Topp, with the white pieces played well and had a good combination attack against black’s king, but black successfully defended this and won a pawn and rook endgame.   Andrew Leadbetter also lost an endgame; this was bishop and pawn and Andrew was forced to resign against the weight of connected passed pawns.   Boris Ondrejkovic achieved a win when his opponent failed to read a queen check.  Boris was able to win his opponent’s queen, and with only minutes left on his clock he secured victory with a checkmate.

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