Scarborough Fair! It's easy to see why the Scarborough Congress has become one of the most popular in the calendar. Last Saturday morning provided a clear and sunny sky and a bracing walk to the venue for round 2.

Travail Pursuit #68: The Scarborough Express

Last weekend the North Yorkshire resort of Scarborough became a chess mecca with over 300 chess players descending on the Spa Centre in the town’s South Bay area. Of course the majority ... Continue Reading →
Back into the labyrinth with 9.Nf4 in the French Tarrasch

Travail Pursuit #65: Back into the labyrinth

Before I get into today’s post I should explain the reason for my extraordinarily lengthy hiatus. To begin with, in August and early September I was spending all my ‘chess ... Continue Reading →
The smell of concentration!
If this website had built in 'smelly vision' then right now you'd be able to smell concentration!

Travail Pursuit #64: The Rise and Fall of the Lucky Sweatshirt

In my last post I recounted the saga of my lucky black sweatshirt which, I felt, was giving me an unseen helping hand at the chess board in the period up to Christmas. I promised a ... Continue Reading →
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County Championship (U160): Yorkshire vs. Greater Manchester

Last Sunday Yorkshire took on Greater Manchester in an Under 160 County Championship Quarter Final which was hosted by Halifax Chess Club at their home venue the Lee Mount Club. Yorkshire ... Continue Reading →
The smell of concentration!
If this website had built in 'smelly vision' then right now you'd be able to smell concentration!

Travail Pursuit #63: Son of ‘Lucky Sweatshirt’

“The true sweetness of chess, if it can ever be called sweet, is to see victory snatched, by some happy impertinence out of the shadows of apparently irrevocable disaster.” – ... Continue Reading →
A festive season without chess can feel a bit like cold turkey

Travail Pursuit #62 : Cold Turkey?

  During the festive season (already a distant memory), culinary experts try to find ever more creative ways to serve up the remains of the Christmas turkey. Meanwhile for chess ... Continue Reading →
As the sun sets on our adventure into the French Defence I invite you to take one final plunge with me into the murkiest depths of opening theory. This image is used under Creative Commons terms and sourced from the NOAA Flickr photostream

Travail Pursuit #61: Into the deep

Here it is then, the final part of my mini-series on this very particular line of the French Defence, Tarrasch Variation.Time to ditch your snorkel and flippers, pop the hatch on your ... Continue Reading →
Preparing to take the plunge and advance. This image is used under Creative Commons terms and sourced from cdm's Flickr photostream

Travail Pursuit #60: On the precipice

In this, the shortest of my four post series on the 9.Nf4 line in the French Tarrasch, there are just three games to look at. But don’t let the lack of material here fool you, this ... Continue Reading →
The presence of opposite coloured bishops in endings usually leads to drawn positions. But, as today's examples show, the route to a draw is not always straight forward. This image is used under Creative Commons terms and sourced from Jim Rafferty's Flickr photostream

Travail Pursuit #59: Opposites attract… draws

And now for something completely different! In today’s post I’m going to write about a subject I’ve never covered before (indeed I’m not sure that this website has ever done ... Continue Reading →
This image is used under Creative Commons terms and sourced from Remo Cassella's Flickr photostream

Travail Pursuit #58: Disturbing the peace

Today I bring you part two of my four part series on the 9.Nf4 variation of the French Tarrasch, Closed Variation. In the first part published in June I looked at early deviations ... Continue Reading →