Last week we had two great matches between the Bishops vs Buccaneers and Bandits vs Bulldogs
Buccaneers vs Bishops
Another excellent set of decisive games. The first game to finish was Alex vs Azhar. Alex won a piece and then rapidly liquidated the board to comfortably win. Another game that seemed to liquidate was the game between James and Paul, Paul offered the draw, but James fought on and turned a drawn looking end game into a winning pawn endgame with the 'chicken coop' technique. Chris and Tony's game was the next to finish after a very long game with each players blundering pieces to one another in what was a see-saw game. Chris was worse for a while with him simply holding on and delay tactics until a blunder from Tony swung the game his way. That makes two wins in a row for Chris so that should be a confidence boost for him. The final game between Paolo and myself lasted 70 moves and 3 hours. It was a very very sharp position with both kings exposed on the kingside and me going from +12 on the computer to 0 in one move. Tony has asked for more positions to be shown so here you go: black to play and win. Don’t scroll down as I will spoil it there.
I spent too long on this move and got lost in the calculation. Bh3 is the winning idea with the idea of checking the king on g2 – I saw this and then played another move as I didn’t realise the full strength of the move. To make this work if someone blocks this idea with Rf2 for example is using both bishops with dark square bishop coming to h4 and the queen following up by following the bishop and coming to g5. This was apparently an unstoppable attack. Paolo punished the missed win with a slow methodical conversion of a winning endgame despite frantic defence. Paolo got the win but ultimately in vain as Buccaneers win 3-1.
Bandits vs Bulldogs
An excellent tight match between the bandits and the bulldogs. Steve used his initiative well with the white pieces against Thorsten and was completely winning, however he thought (wrongly) that he was about to run into a mating net and so missed his chance to win the game. In the end it fizzled to an agreed draw. On board 2 there was a very crowded closed game between Adem and Paul. Adem fought very well and got an excellent result drawing against Paul Jackson. On the bottom two boards we had two decisive results. The match between Kieron and Stefan quickly dissolve to a pawn only endgame with 6 or 7 pawns still on the table, I have no idea how that happens! Stefan showed good technique to turn this into a win against a very strong opponent. Stefan is having an excellent tournament. Finally Brian managed to bounce back from last week getting the win against Peter. The final result of the match was 2-2, well done to both teams.