Bd

NOTTS

Gd

Score

ESSEX

Gd

1

A. Morrey

120

1 - 0

W. Petchey

123

2

D. Keeley

107

½-½

D. Bird

122

3

M. Jackson

118

0 - 1

M. Ashkettle

122

4

T. Severn

118

1 - 0

N. Hopgood

120

5

R. Sayer

117

1 - 0

R. Joyce

120

6

P. Davies

111

½-½

J. Figgins

118

7

D. Wilson

115

1 - 0

B. Sheppard

115

8

P. Herring

107

1 - 0

T. Allen

115

9

G. Elliott

116

1 - 0

P. Flint

115

10

W. Fedorio

110

0 - 1

M. Kingsley

114

11

A. Smith

108

0 - 1

G. Benger

110

12

M. Clark

104

1 - 0

E. Lodge

110

13

M. Roper

107

1 - 0

E. Walker

106

14

P. Prole

100

½-½

R. Giddens

99

15

N. Manley

95

0 - 1

P. Pattison

95

16

C. Parrish

80

0 - 1

G. Walker

100

9½ - 6½

The Quarter-final of the National u-125 Championships, played in Bedford recently, proved to be a huge disappointment for the Essex team. Essex outgraded Nottinghamshire by about 5 points per board and a place in the semi-final was there for the taking, but some lacklustre performances by several players cost Essex the match.

Only two of the five winners on the Essex side succeeded in taking an early advantage and keeping it throughout. Malcolm Kingsley played well on the white side of a Sicilian defence and Graham Walker won a piece in the opening, swapped queens and won the ending. Other than these two, the Essex wins were somewhat against the run of play.

Peter Pattison defended well in a Sicilian defence, but his youthful opponent appeared to have the upper hand when Peter spotted a combination which won white's queen for two pieces. Mark Ashkettle was also under some pressure when he played a move which attacked a rook and threatened mate. His opponent saw that his rook needed to be moved, but missed the important part! Graham Benger played the Winawer French, and white captured the g and h pawns. Graham seemed to have little of the counterplay which is usually associated with this line when he suddenly appeared with an extra rook. Even then, white had four pawns for it, and with danger on both sides of the board Graham had to play especially carefully. Eventually white's attack fizzled out and in two or three moves it was all over: the queens were off, white's last rook was exchanged and the pawns were ready to be hoovered up.

Apart form these games there was little joy for Essex, although Robert Giddens played solidly on the white side of a Benoni. Neither side seemed willing to continue a position in which any attempt to force the issue could have resulted in defeat. Ellen Walker achieved a large advantage from the opening, winning a pawn and wrecking white's king side. However, she paid the penalty for not developing her pieces, losing a bishop to a knight fork. After this setback she missed a couple of promising chances to get back in and was eventually ground down. Richard Joyce and Peter Flint both suffered similar fates: they both fianchettoed on the king-side but then fell victim to pretty checkmates involving bishops. Tom Allen sacrificed a knight on f7 but black was too well defended for the attack to break through. Walley Petchey's king was murdered in its bed by white's knight, bishop and queen and Neil Hopgood, playing white against the Petroff defence, had a ghastly position: both his bishops were buried behind a blocked pawn centre while black placed a monstrous pair of knights in Neil's half of the board. With the freedom to do what he liked, the Nottinghamshire board 4 simply brought his queen and rooks to the king-side and delivered checkmate. The only surprise was that it took him nearly four hour to achieve this. The final disappointment of the afternoon was for Barry Sheppard. He had played very well indeed to reach a king & pawns ending in which he could have created an outside passed pawn. Sadly, he led with the g-pawn when he should have pushed the h-pawn. His opponent blocked up that avenue and it was white's king which invaded to mop up the queen-side. The other two draws were both agreed after the match had been won by Nottinghamshire.

Season's performance, Essex under-125 1995-96

Grade

Score

David Cannan

124

6/6

Carlton Barrett

124

½/4

Walley Petchey

123

4½/8

David Bird

122

6/9

Mark Ashkettle

122

2½/6

Neil Hopgood

120

3/8

Richard Joyce

120

2½/5

John Figgins

118

3½/9

Robert Hayley

117

2/3

Barry Sheppard

115

3½/9

Tom Allen

115

7/9

Peter Flint

115

1/3

Malcolm Kingsley

114

5/9

Graham Benger

110

5/9

Edward Lodge

110

3½/9

Ellen Walker

106

1½/3

Peter Sheehan

101

½/2

Graham Walker

100

3/4

Robert Giddens

99

6/7

Peter Pattison

96

5½/8

Peter Kemp

96

0/2

Caius Turner

91

1/2

Dominic Allen

70

2/3

XABCDEFGHY

8-tr-+-vl-mk(

7+-+-+-zpp'

6R+-+-+-+&

5+-zp-zpQsN-%

4-+-zp-+-+$

3+P+-+P+-#

2-+-+-zP-wq"

1+-+-+K+-!

xabcdefghy

White to play and win.

Forsyth: 1r3b1k/6pp/R7/2p1pQN1/3p4/1P3P2/5P1q/5K2

Last week's solution: 1 Qxc8+ Nxc8 2 Rxc8+ Kh7 3 Rh8+ Kxg6 4 Rxh6+ 1 - 0

Speelman,J - Kortschnoj,V

Reykjavik World Cup, 1988

1.Nf3 c5 2.c4 Nc6 3.Nc3 g6 4.e3 Nf6 5.d4 cxd4 6.exd4 d5 7.Bg5 Be6 8.Bxf6 exf6 9.Be2 Bg7 10.0-0 0-0 11.Qd2 dxc4 12.d5 Ne5 13.Nxe5 fxe5 14.Bxc4 Bf5 15.d6 Qh4 16.Bb3 Rad8 17.Rad1 e4 18.Qd5 Rd7 19.Rfe1 Re8 20.g3 Qg4 21.h3 Qxh3 22.Nxe4 Bxe4 23.Rxe4 Rxe4 24.Qxe4 Bf6 25.Rc1 Kg7 26.Rc7 h5 27.Be6 1-0