4NCL 2013/14 Weekend 1 – Division 3 North

4NCL 2013/14 Weekend 1 – Division 3



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Round 1

Div 3 North: Bradford DCA Knights B 3½ - 2½ Manchester Manticores 2

Bradford DCA Knights B 3½ – 2½ Manchester Manticores 2
James Bowler (2090) ½ – ½ Peter Mulleady (1895)
Roger Jennings (2058) ½ – ½ Tim Hilton (1858)
Daniel Sullivan (2050) 1 – 0 David Pardoe (1882)
Richard Allis (2042) 0 – 1 Matthew Pollard (1818)
Tony Slinger (1944) ½ – ½ Richard Fox (1746)
David Patrick (1938) 1 – 0 Neil Jerzynek (1642)

Div 3 North: Bradford DCA Knights C 2 - 4 Jorvik

Bradford DCA Knights C 2 – 4 Jorvik
Miles Edwards-Wright (1954) 0 – 1 Mark White (2081)
Robert Dean (1930) 0 – 1 Martin Carpenter (2018)
Chris Dossett (1936) ½ – ½ Martina Flint (1922)
Mike Bramson (1803) 0 – 1 Richard Cowan (1946)
Nicholas Mahoney (1802) 1 – 0 Paul Anderson (1786)
Christopher Bak (1706) 0 – 1 Norman Andrews (1650)

Div 3 South: Surbiton 2½ - 3½ Leeds University Old Boys

Surbiton 2½ – 3½ Leeds University Old Boys
CM Chris Briscoe (2214) ½ – ½ FM John Hall (2269)
Paul Shepherd (2186) 0 – 1 FM Hubert Mossong (2121)
Ian Henderson (2059) ½ – ½ Mark Taylor (2097)
Alan Crombleholme (2090) ½ – ½ CM Paul Wojciechowski (2060)
Angus James (1942) ½ – ½ Iain Bourne (1918)
Koby Kalavannan (1812) ½ – ½ John Harvey (1850)


Redworth Hall, Darlington

After quite a bit of last minute panic we had managed to put together two full teams and arrived at Redworth Hall to find the Surtees Suite pleasingly full with Division 3 North now up to 14 teams.

Top seeds are Spirit of Atticus A and North East England 1, both sides will clearly have a great chance of making a run at getting back to Division 2, and both won in Round One. Spirit of Atticus were particularly impressive in seeing off the strong Ferry Cross the Maroczy 1 squad 4.5-1.5.

Cheddleton 2 will surely also be a force to be reckoned with, but they were held by North East England’s second team which also topped the 2000 average rating mark.

Manchester Manticores 1 got off to the best start of all with a 6-0 win over bottom seeds, Ferry Cross the Maroczy 2, and Holmes Chapel were also convincing, beating Cheddleton 3, 5-1.

So to the games featuring the Yorkshire teams. Bradford DCA B looked to be strong favourites over Manchester Manticores 2 on paper but it turned out to be anything but easy.

Tony Slinger appeared to stand well from a Trompowsky and was a pawn up going into an ending, but had to agree a draw with his remaining pieces tied down to stopping Richard Fox’s passed C pawn which had reached the seventh. Daniel Sullivan too seemed to be doing nicely but his edge seemed to be slipping away a little with a previously impressive pawn centre having been broken up. His opponent David Pardoe decided this was an opportune moment to offer a draw but happily for Daniel the move accompanying the draw offer blundered a whole rook.

Tony Slinger

Tony Slinger

Meanwhile Dave Patrick’s opponent had sacrificed a couple of pawns to try to open lines against the king, but Dave defended carefully and forced a queen exchange after which the material advantage was too much.

So far so good, but Richard Allis had gone wrong somewhere in the opening in a Ruy Lopez sideline and had lost an exchange with little compensation, and when this was duly converted by Matthew Pollard the match was in the balance. Roger Jennings went for everything sacrificing a knight on g2 to open up Tim Hilton’s king, but he couldn’t find a killer blow to follow it up and after some manoeuvring a draw by repetition had to be agreed.

This left us 3- 2 up with just board one still playing. James Bowler and Peter Mulleady were still playing an hour and half later with most of the rest of the Bradford squad already settling down to a fine evening meal at the Bay Horse, just down the road in Heighington. It was a rook and scattered pawns v rook and scattered pawns ending and I don’t what the “correct” outcome should have been, but right at the end it came down to Peter having the sole remaining pawn with James’ king not in position to stop it advancing. I suspect Peter was winning at that stage but one slip let James off the hook and my computer at least is giving 0.00 in the final position. Result: 3.5-2.5 and much celebrating when we arrived at the pub.

Chris Dossett

Chris Dossett

This leaves the all Yorkshire clash between Jorvik and Bradford DCA C. At first things were looking good for Bradford as Chris Dossett appeared to get an an overwhelming advantage right out of the opening – a Lisitsin gambit. But Martina Flint defended stubbornly and well, keeping the damage down to just an exchange. She then gradually managed to activate her pieces and eventually won back the exchange, forcing a draw.

Chris Bak used a neat tactic to win an important pawn and break up Norman Andrew’s kingside into the bargain, and was able to follow up with a winning kingside attack.

Nick Mahoney and Paul Anderson’s game looked pretty even throughout but by the time they agreed a draw my position was already looking pretty hopeless as Richard Cowan easily beat off my attempt to break in the centre which turned out to be giving up a pawn for less than nothing.

This meant that the match would be decided on the top 2 boards. On 2 Martin Carpenter and Robert Dean were debating a Winawer French upon which I am in no way qualified to comment but I suspect it was probably always under control for Martin and in due course his h pawn made it all the way to h8, with decisive effect.

On top board Miles Edwards-Wright and Mark White had exchanged queens early and a long grind ensued. Mark secured an outside passed pawn and then tied Miles’ pieces down to defending the queening square before switching targets to force a second pawn home. Final result: a deserved win for Jorvik, 4-2.

Round 2

Div 3 North: Jorvik 2½ - 3½ North East England 1

Jorvik 2½ – 3½ North East England 1
Jos Woolley (2116) 0 – 1 FM David Walker (2259)
Mark White (2081) 0 – 1 CM Paul Dargan (2169)
Richard Mounce (2044) ½ – ½ Roger Coathup (2129)
Martin Carpenter (2018) 0 – 1 Julian Allinson (2123)
Anastasios Nezis (1938) ½ – ½ David Wise (2117)
Neville Pearce (1634) ½ – ½ Norman Solomon (2135)

Div 3 North: Cheddleton 2 4 - 2 Bradford DCA Knights B

Cheddleton 2 4 – 2 Bradford DCA Knights B
Paul Wallace (2145) ½ – ½ James Bowler (2090)
Alex Richardson (2111) ½ – ½ Roger Jennings (2058)
Malcolm Armstrong (2116) 1 – 0 Daniel Sullivan (2050)
David Gothard (2178) 0 – 1 Richard Allis (2042)
Zheming Zhang (2050) 1 – 0 Tony Slinger (1944)
Colin Davison (2072) 1 – 0 Robert Dean (1930)

Div 3 North: Spirit of Atticus B 4 - 2 Bradford DCA Knights C

Spirit of Atticus B 4 – 2 Bradford DCA Knights C
David Robertson (2908) 0 – 1 Damian McCarthy (2002)
David Latham (2130) 1 – 0 David Patrick (1938)
Peter Ackley (2138) 1 – 0 Miles Edwards-Wright (1954)
Andrew Mort (2006) 0 – 1 Mike Bramson (1803)
Stephen Connor (2004) 1 – 0 Nicholas Mahoney (1802)
David Stuttard (1874) 1 – 0 Christopher Bak (1706)

Div 3 South: Leeds University Old Boys 4½ - 1½ Warwickshire Select 2

Leeds University Old Boys 4½ – 1½ Warwickshire Select 2
FM John Hall (2269) ½ – ½ Nick Roberts (2074)
FM Hubert Mossong (2121) 0 – 1 Keith Ingram (2022)
Mark Taylor (2097) ½ – ½ Mark Page (2100)
>CM Paul Wojciechowski (2060) ½ – ½ Nicholas Fallowfield (2006)
Simon Deighton (1986) ½ – ½ Golam Ali (1930)
Iain Bourne (1918) ½ – ½ Rajen Parekh (1738)

Unusually for Bradford it was a stress free Sunday morning with all present and correct in plenty of time for the 11am start.

Bradford DCA C had a tough match in prospect against Spirit of Atticus 2, but things were looking good early as Damian McCarthy caught Dave Robertson in an opening trap and went on to convert the extra material quite quickly. I then added a second point with what former Alwoodley player Mike Evans (who now lives in these parts and had come along to spectate) characterised as “a typical Bramson hack.” Guilty as charged – I just wish they all ended in the same result!

Mike Bramson

Mike Bramson

Meanwhile on board 6 Chris Bak was a pawn up out of the opening in a Petroff and it looked like an upset was possible. Gradually though, things turned against us as our experienced opponents fought back. Dave Patrick thought that David Latham’s queenside play was getting too strong and bravely tried a tactical solution. Unfortunately the tactics were flawed and too much material had gone.

Chris Bak had retained his extra pawn but at the cost of a very rapid passed a pawn which David Studdard proceeded to advance forcing terminal loss of material. Miles Edwards-Wright seemed to be doing fine for most of his game but after all the major pieces had been exchanged Peter Ackley had a slight space advantage and then found a nice tactic to win a pawn, after which there was no way back. Finally there was a very exciting game on board 5 where Nick Mahoney and Stephen Connor were swapping tactical threats move after move. At the end Stephen had won some material but at the expense of allowing some scary looking checks. Nick then succumbed to a rather unusual killer move – Kd2, which came with a discovered check, forcing immediate resignation. Final score 4-2 to Spirit of Atticus B.

With all the C team games finished there was still drama aplenty left to unfold as Bradford DCA B took on Cheddleton 2.

As my car load prepared to hit the A1 south, only 2 games of the match had finished. Tony Slinger had appeared to have a slight edge out of a Guioco Piano, having disrupted his young opponent’s pawn structure, but this was rectified when the queens were exchanged, leaving a queenside majority for Zheming Zhang to work with. He handled this very impressively and Tony was forced to resign when his remaining knight could no longer cover the threats on both sides of the board.


Roger Jennings

On top board James Bowler’s opponent, Paul Wallace, had sacrificed an exchange for 2 connected passed pawns with an unopposed dark squared bishop. It looked tricky to defend but James managed to eliminate one of the passed pawns. In the final position it looked very difficult for either side to make progress and a hard fought draw was agreed.

So as we left, it was 1 up to Cheddleton, but we were by no means pessimistic of the outcome. Richard Allis had won a pawn with a trick in the opening and had already gathered a second and we were confident he would convert. The remaining 3 games had a long way to go.

The way things turned out was a serious case of what might have been. On board 2 Roger Jennings was also an exchange for a pawn up against Alex Richardson but with the same difficulties that James had faced earlier with an unopposed bishop threatening a slightly open king. In the end he opted to return the exchange to secure a drawn rook and pawn ending.

Once Richard had converted his material advantage the match was all square. On board three it was a hard fought game throughout, with Daniel Sullivan defending a Slav tenaciously despite Malcolm Armstrong’s space advantage which seemed to offer good prospects. Eventually Malcolm decided on an exchange sacrifice – this was clearly Cheddleton’s theme for the day – and this at first looked to have worked out well as it seemed very tricky to defend threats to the king and fend off a mass of central pawns. Daniel managed it very well generating counter threats and an open file for his rook, and after an inaccuracy from Malcolm he was on the verge of converting for the win. A forcing sequence starting with Ra2+ would have been conclusive but unfortunately Daniel put the rook down on a1, not check, leaving mate in one on for Malcolm. An extremely unfortunate end to a well played game.

Board 6 was equally epic, stretching all the way out to move 82. It came down to a minor pieces and pawns ending which must have been extremely difficult for both players to calculate with all kinds of forks, checks and even mating nets to take into account on every move and competing passed pawns on opposite sides. In the end the Robert Dean’s passer made it to promotion but Colin Davison’s followed it immediately with check and unstoppable mate threats. Final score: 4-2 to Cheddleton 2.


Jorvik vs NE England 1

Despite the disappointing outcome this was a great start to the new season and I think greatly enjoyed by all 13 of our players with every game hard fought.

The new incremental time control seemed to be well received by all and we were all complimented by Lara Barnes at the start of round 2 on the legibility of our scoresheets. I don’t recall this being high on anyone’s list of reasons for changing the time control, but as unintended consequences go it’s a pretty good one – anything to help out our tireless arbiters is to be welcomed!

The expanded Division 3 North is going to offer a great variety of opposition and we’re looking forward to the next weekend at the new venue Shrigley Hall, where the hotel will have a lot to live up to.

Report by Mike Bramson

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9 Responses to “4NCL 2013/14 Weekend 1 – Division 3 North”

  1. Martin Carpenter

    Nov 20. 2013

    I haven’t checked with our silicon overlords but suspect I was in some sort of vague control on Saturday after he went Ng8 after Qh8+. Very thankful for the extra thinking time on offer though!

    You can how silly the position was by the sequence of white moves from 11 onwards: Qxh7, Nf3, Bxc3, h4, Qh8+, Qh5, Bd2, Kf1, Qh8, h5, h6, Nxd4, Rd1, h7, Qxd8+, h8=Q+, Qh4. That really shouldn’t represent sane middle game play :)

    Impressed/happy with how solid DCA3 (and Manchester/NE 2) were.

    Our cunning ‘swap 4/6th’s’ of the team policy against NE1 was purely rotation based rather than an attempt to confuse, but clearly nearly worked in round 2 ;)

    Actually I don’t think we were ever that close. Mark had something of an accident in the opening and was always suffering quite badly and Jos unfortunately blundered.

    Some very commendable draws elsewhere but we never really looked like getting the wins needed to balance the top boards.

    I was maybe slightly worse for ~20 moves before a mildly random chance to whip some quite effective tactics turned up, just when Julian was getting a bit short of time. Not half as convincing as the rather nice way he shredded me with white in the Cleveland league last season.

    NE1 will stay very strong through the season – they’ve got two more very strong players to come in who couldn’t play this round.

    We’ll have to see how the various 2nd/third teams hold up. Hopefully well.

    Reply to this comment
    • Andy Bak

      Nov 21. 2013

      Your game on Saturday is certainly quite bizarre – particularly Qh7-h8-h5-h8-d8 and then getting another queen on h8! Although this sort of idea is fairly typical in the Poisoned Pawn Winawer.

      I hope North East can keep two teams up for all the weekends, particularly the final two weekends at Daventry as it is a long trek for them.

      Reply to this comment
  2. Martin Carpenter

    Nov 20. 2013

    ps – the Surtees suite is a suitable name for a place to play chess :)

    A very obvious derivation from the river name/French of course. There’s a few bits with the name round here.

    Reply to this comment
    • Chris Dossett

      Nov 21. 2013

      Surtees Suite was very appropriate for me as he is the highest rated player I have beaten, the year I became (almost certainly) the weakest player ever to win the Northern Counties championship :-)

      Reply to this comment
      • Andy Bak

        Nov 22. 2013

        It’s a bit of a shame that Mike doesn’t play in the 4NCL – he’d be a great addition!

        Reply to this comment
        • Martin Carpenter

          Nov 22. 2013

          True :) Part of a bigger theme to some extent mind.

          The current NE/Liverpool teams are I think roughly as strong as can be realistically expected. Maybe enough room to squeeze another decent team out of Yorkshire somehow, but not that many given everything else.

          Manchester is still, I think, a potentially non trivial growth area. Ok,
          I think they’d struggle a little bit to challenge NE1/Spirit without any of the 3C’s players but they could fairly easily (on paper) field a team above the current MM1.

          Still, they’re building quite well from the first year with all those defaults!

          Reply to this comment


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