Broadstairs  3     Woodnesborough A  1 

1 Reg Pidduck (107) 0-1    Steve Garrett (e79)
2 Andy Flood (106) 1-0    Oli Garrett (e53)
3 Bob Cronin (104) 1-0    George Allen (36)
4 Michael Doyle (81) 1-0    Sarah Garrett (e25)

Reg Pidduck writes:

BOARD 4. OUR RED HOT CAPTAIN. Sarah Garrett,  playing her first game, was unlucky to come up against our red hot captain Michael Doyle and lost after eight moves with a Queen and Bishop mate. 1-0 up

BOARD 3. RELIABLE BOB. Young George also  had an early bath with Bob finishing by 8 o’ clock.  2-0 up

BOARD 2. STAR OF THE NIGHT.  What a fight young eight-year-old Oli put up against Andy. Although Andy had gone a knight up early on, Oli did not allow him to make any mistakes as Andy had to slowly find the right moves to avoid the young star coming back at him, Andy finally winning. 3-0 up

BOARD 1. WELL PREPARED STEVE. Steve and I had already drawn in our previous encounter. So we were both up for a return match. Steve had anticipated my playing a Dutch against his 1.d4 and had planned his game. For the first 24 moves I felt I was okay but needed to press and made a bad move on my 25th which Steve pounced on and from then on pounded my King all the way from f7 over to a7  finishing with a mate. Well played, Steve.

We have now played four, won three and lost one in our quest for the Walker Shield.


                                               Broadstairs  2         Folkestone   5 

1 David Faldon (174) ½-½   Jim Bayford (178 )
2 Nick McBride (173) 0-1    Martin Cutford (173)
3 Bob Page (135) 0-1    David Shire (168)
4 Paul Carfrae (133) 0-1   Kevin Smyth (163)
5 Richard Clement (e130) 0-1    John Atherton (163)
6 Andy Flood (106) ½-½    Tayfun Demirbilek (155)
7 Michael Doyle (81) 1-0    Robert Twigg (70)

David Faldon writes:

The match got off to a cold start, not surprising for early January, but after an hour or so hats and gloves could be discarded and the pieces started to fly. Nick’s game on board 2 was especially violent with sacrifices on both sides and the pieces seemingly randomly scattered in the far corners of the board – but unfortunately for Nick his opponent had played much of it before and this proved decisive in the long run. The games on boards 4 and 7 were more one-sided with white doing all the pressing. Paul (black on board 4) defended hard but in vain while Michael (white on board 7) calmly brought home the point. Andy (black on board 6) then took a draw by perpetual check against his highly-rated opponent. That left us 1½-2½ down, but at that stage we still had a real hope of getting something positive from the match. David (board 1) had a very good position and both Bob on board 3 and Richard on board 5 (playing his first game for the club) were holding on tenaciously in difficult endings. In the end, though, none of the results went our way and we lost the match 2-5. Still, not an awful result against a Folkestone team packed with strong players on the middle boards. Many thanks to everyone who played, and especially to Bob and Paul for driving. Congratulations to Folkestone on their victory. They made us feel very welcome and even provided tea!

“I’ve got a new opening,” Nick said ahead of our club championship match the other night. After a few moves I realised I’d seen it before. “Oh, it’s a Réti,” I said. “Is it?”, he replied, “I thought I’d made it up!” Some years ago I experimented with the Réti until I came to the conclusion that either (a) it wasn’t very good, (b) I wasn’t very good or (c) both. Rather like W.G.Grace’s view on batting, at the time I considered all other openings then settled on 1. e4 and I have been yoked to the King’s pawn for good or ill ever since. Of course, it is also possible that I just didn’t know the Réti very well and here it is many years later returning to bite me on the bottom. Well, not so because as it turns out, Nick didn’t know it very well either….In the final position White resigned before the inevitable 33….Bb2.

White:   Nick McBride (173)     Black:   Robert Page  (135)

Goodall Cup

Alas, our young friend Wei Yi is not playing at Hastings although he is appearing at the slightly grander Tata Steel Masters at Wijk Aan Zee starting next week of which more anon. As a warm-up to the event, he has been competing in the Hengda Cup, a 4-game classical match against the Czech number one David Navara in Yancheng, China. The winner gets $20,000, the loser $10,000 (not bad for a four-game two-horse race – the winner at Hastings gets £2000!). After the four classical games, the scores were level 2-2 so they then played two 5+3 playoff games resulting in one win each and so here we are again….it’s Armageddon time! The players play one game where White has six minutes to Black’s five but Black only needs to draw the game to win the match. The game was level for most of the time and Black may well have got the draw he needed but watch out for our hero’s 37th move which may look strange at first until we realise that Black can force a draw! Therefore, with one move Wei Yi was $10,000 richer.

White:   GM David Navara  (2740)     Black:   GM Wei Yi (2743)

Hengda Cup 2017 – Armageddon game

In the world of chess Christmas and the New Year, of course, means the Hastings Congress and, as I write, Round 6  out of the nine rounds in the Masters is under way with Jakhongir  Vakhidov of Uzbekistan the leader on 4½ with four others on 4 including Keith Arkell and Danny Gormally. There are 86 entries in the Masters which seems pretty good to me although I notice that last year there were 99. The official title of the tournament is ‘The Tradewise 93rd Hastings International Chess Congress’ and it is fortunate that the congress has managed to secure funding from Tradewise as its future seemed under threat a few years ago. It was said that Hastings Borough Council would be withdrawing its support although that has certainly not happened yet. Hastings truly is an international congress – of the 86 players listed in the Masters, I counted 24 different nationalities which can’t be bad for business at an English seaside resort in winter. Top seed is the Indian GM Deep Sengupta and, as last year’s winner, the probable favourite. However, he came a cropper at the first hurdle.

White:   FM Adam C. Taylor  (2242)     Black:   GM Deep Sengupta  (2586)

Hastings International Chess Congress (Round 1)

For anyone who has never been to the Hastings Congress, there is plenty going on. Apart from the Masters, there have been up to six separate Christmas tournaments and the New Year equivalent is now under way. There were also two blitz tournaments played over the New Year, one of which was a pairs blitz which sounds fun, even awarding a prize to the team with the best name which went to ‘Lord Voldemort Plays Chess’. This may not seem too catchy at first until you learn that the two players were Tom Thorpe and Alan Riddle so I think there is a Harry Potter joke here more apparent to some than others. Personally, I liked ‘Glaring Howlers’ (Chris and Oliver Howell). Eventually, there were four joint winners including ‘The Gorm’s Bollocks’ – can’t believe I have just typed that on a family-friendly website – consisting of Danny Gormally and Lee Bullock. I hope I am not being too unfair in suggesting that most of the credit here should go to Danny as I have beaten Lee yet I would not come within a gnat’s crotchet of beating ‘The Gorm’ even if it were a blindfold simultaneous and I was given queen odds.  The congress ends on Sunday and there is still time to enter the weekend tournament, five rounds starting on Saturday morning. Failing that, pop down to watch the games and listen to the commentary. Not sure if it is the usual Chris Ward but if it is, he’s very entertaining.