Broadstairs   1      Bridge  3                       

1 Bob Page (133) 0-1 Richard Eales (192)
2 Paul Carfrae (131) 1-0 Peter Blundell (115)
3 Andy Flood (115) 0-1 Gary Hilleard (107)
4 John Couzens  (108) 0-1 Graeme Boxall (86)

Paul Carfrae writes:

On a cold Bonfire Night the Broadstairs Steele Cup team ventured to Bridge. Like Mr Fawkes, I was plotting a cunning plan to overthrow our esteemed hosts.I knew that Bridge put a very strong player on Board 1 so my plan was to outgun our opponents on the other three boards. As history has told us, most cunning plans and plots fail as did this one!

As the games got under way, I thought nothing would happen early on so did not take much notice and concentrated on my opening. How wrong I was – the fireworks had already started on Board 4! Within no time at all, John’s opponent, Graeme Boxall, had won a knight for nothing. As you know with John, he does not give up lightly and battled on. Unfortunately, by John’s own admission, a few too many wrong move choices cost him the game: 1-0 to Bridge.

I was the next to finish. Peter Blundell played a cagey opening so to force a breakthrough I gave up a pawn to open up the c-file that I could then control with my rooks.  With the pawn advantage, Peter decided to swap off as many pieces as possible to get to the endgame. He had  a bishop and six pawns to my knight and five. However, his miscalculation enabled me to swap my knight for his bishop and a pawn. With my king in the centre of the board protecting my pawn structure, I was able to force through a passed pawn. Peter duly resigned:1-1.

Next up was Bob on Board 1. Anything that Bob could get from this game would be a bonus as his opponent was Richard Eales, graded at 192. Bob fought a gallant battle but eventually succumbed to Richard’s pressure tactics and resigned: 2-1 to Bridge.

All hopes to rescue a draw fell on Andy who was playing ex-Broadstairs player, Gary Hilleard. Andy, playing his normal attacking game, had built up pressure on Black’s kingside and Gary was forced to weaken his pawn structure by doubling his pawns in front of the king. However, he managed to control the position and Andy could not capitalise on the weakness. Eventually, Gary got the upper hand and had numerous threats that Andy had to defend against. In the final position, Black’s rooks were too much for Andy and he had to resign: 3-1 to Bridge.

Well done, Bridge. Thanks for the hospitality and a big thank you to Andy for taking the Broadstairs contingent.


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