Essex

Kent

1

Andrew Lewis

0.5 0.5

Neil MacDonald

2

Karl Mah

0.5 0.5

Danny Gormally

3

Mike Twyble

0.5 0.5

Philip Morris

4

Jon Manley

0.5 0.5

I.R. Watson

5

David Sands

0.5 0.5

S. Giddins

6

Eddie Dearing

0.5 0.5

S.D. Brown

7

Graham Moore

0 1

Chris Cooley

8

Gary Kenworthy

1 0

R.G. Eales

9

Jim Burnett

0.5 0.5

A.Mack

10

Jeff Goldberg

0 1

David Moskowic

11

Paul Barclay

0.5 0.5

Alan Hanreck

12

Ivan Myall

0 1

N.F. Dickenson

13

John Moore

0 1

A. Harakis

14

Bill Saunders

0.5 0.5

R.M.R. O'Kelly

15

Russell White

0 1

P.P. Taylor

16

Robert Parker

0.5 0.5

John Sugden

6 10

While the under-175 team was busy celebrating, the Essex team playing in the Open Final was licking its wounds, mauled by a Kent team which did not present such problems in the Southern Counties' Championship earlier in the season. A winning margin of four points was perhaps a little flattering to Kent, as their higher boards were entrenched in defensive positions for much of the match. Andrew Lewis played the Sicilian Defence against his Grandmaster opponent and his counter-attack was a match for the Kent top board. A position was reached in which neither side could make an attempt at progress without precipitating his own downfall. Karl Mah won a pawn against Danny Gormally, but his chances of converting this in an opposite coloured bishops' ending were slim indeed. Gary Kenworthy was the side's sole winner, from a wild, unbalanced position in which both kings were exposed. Paul Barclay deserved better than a draw against Alan Hanreck. Paul stepped in as a late replacement for the absent Andrew Dunn, and although 50 minutes down on the clock and 40 points down on grade he won a pawn. In the time available he was unable to find a way of forcing the win in a rook ending, and a draw was agreed.

This was a sad end to an otherwise excellent season for the Essex first team, who have been splendidly led by John Cooke. Apart from Kent, it is hard to envisage any other County defeating a full-strength Essex team.

Essex u100

Nottinghamshire u100

1

Ron Prickett

0 1

G. Gibson

2

B. Mehanjedad

0 1

A. Flint

3

C. Wiggins

0 1

A. Clark

4

Ezra Lutton

1 0

D. Eggleston

5

Alex O'Neill

0 1

E. Middleton

6

Caius Turner

1 0

A. Freeman

7

Dominic Allen

0 1

S. Turner

8

Alan Trent

0 1

O. Graham

9

John Sneesby

0.5 0.5

D. Blampied

10

Stewart Trent

1 0

R. Dawson

11

Josiah Lutton

1 0

T. England

12

Heather Walker

1 0

A. Kowalkowski

5.5 6.5

After this match had been in progress only a short while, a complete disaster appeared to be overtaking the Essex team, already depleted by the absence of Lawrence Trent and Bobby Payne, on England under-11 duty. Dominic Allen had a nightmare game in which his opponent quickly won a rook and, with the queens off, Dominic had no chance to turn the game round. Alan Trent sacrificed a bishop, and this ploy did not work. Alex O'Neill had a promising position, but an error cost him material. At one stage, the only game in which Essex definitely had an advantage was Ezra Lutton's, as his Grand Prix attack won him a couple of pawns. Following the trusted plan of Take the Lead, Swap the Bits, Win the Ending, it was not many moves before the queens were off, so were the knights and bishops and one pair of rooks. The Nottinghamshire board 4 had a miserable afternoon.

Ezra's younger brother Josiah appeared to be in all kinds of trouble as he dropped the exchange and the queens were removed. However, a gleam of a chance appeared on the king-side and suddenly Josiah had checkmated his opponent very neatly with rook and bishop. His opponent was absolutely dumb-struck and sat for at least 10 minutes with his head in his hands as he glumly observed the wreckage of what had once been a fine position. This brought the scores to 5.5 - 2.5 in favour of Nottinghamshire, and a trouncing still seemed likely.

However, the Midland Counties' Champions were made to wait right to the end before they were home and dry. Stewart Trent had worked very hard at a tough position, but suddenly his toils were rewarded and his opponent's position collapsed. Heather Walker's opponent made the dubious decision of castling king-side when the h-file was half-open, but careful defensive play allowed him to level the position. This appeared to be heading for a draw when, after some 3.5 hours' play, Heather found a temporary rook sacrifice which should have led her into a marginally favourable queen ending in which she had four pawns to her opponent's three. However, the Nottinghamshire player decided that he wanted to keep the rooks on, overlooking the fact that he left mate in 1. Heather, whose season has been marred by too often allowing completely won positions to slip away, played particularly carefully on this occasion and the Essex onlookers, many of whom had already finished their games in the other finals, waited with bated breath to see whether she would see the mate. She did.

Suddenly we had a match on our hands. The Nottinghamshire lead had been cut to one point and Caius Turner had been winning for ages, without being able to land a knockout blow. Chris Wiggins also appeared to have turned his position round, and levelled the material after having been the exchange down.

This hope was short-lived. Chris found his king-side invaded by a queen and rook, and a snap checkmate finally extinguished the Essex hopes. Now that the match had been decided, the crowd that had gathered quickly dispersed, and there were few onlookers left to witness Caius Turner deliver the coup de grace on his Nottinghamshire opponent.

U100 Final, Essex v Notts

White Lutton, Ezra

Eggleston, D.

1. e4 c5 2. Nc3 Nc6 3. f4 d6 4. Nf3 e6 5. Bc4 Nf6 6. d3 Be7 7. O-O O-O 8. Qe1

Na5 9. Qg3 Nxc4 10. dxc4 g6 11. Qh3 Nh5 12. a3 e5 13. f5 a6 14. Nd5 f6 15. Qh4

Ng7 16. fxg6 hxg6 17. Qh6 Bg4 18. Nh4 Bh5 19. Nxg6 Bxg6 20. Qxg6 Qe8 21. Qh6

Bd8 22. Nxf6+ Bxf6 23. Rxf6 Rxf6 24. Qxf6 Qf8 25. Qg6 Re8 26. Bh6 Re6 27. Bxg7

Rxg6 28. Bxf8 Kxf8 29. Rf1+ Kg7 30. h3 Kh6 31. Rf7 Kg5 32. Kh2 b5 33. cxb5 axb5

34. Rf5+ Kh6 35. g4 Kg7 36. Kg3 Kh6 37. Rf7 Re6 38. Rb7 Rf6 39. Rxb5 Rf4 40.

Rb6 1-0