|The KCC Massive! - left to right Mike J, Matt, Dave, Mike D, Bernard R, Tony, Chris, Bernard C and Algis|
Most boards were contested over 1 x 60 minutes game, but a few intrepid souls (Attention Deficit Disorder?) preferred to play 2 x 30 minutes, though for match score purposes each board still counted as one point per winner.
We ended up as convincing winners by the score of 8-3, with even our loanees from Stratford doing us proud by contributing 1.5 points. I missed much of the action, but there were quick wins from Bernard R and Bernard C - in fact two quick wins from the latter, whose creative juices are clearly in full flow ahead of his forthcoming art show at Rugby!
|An away win!|
The points continued to flow but not necessarily where they deserved to. Mike J blundered a queen away in a winning position, to only draw his 2 game match, while Chris contrived to lose on time when a piece up. But to balance that, Matt somehow turned a lost position into a win. After losing the exchange, he found himself with rook and bishop against two rooks, with a two pawn deficit to boot. I came back a few minutes later and while Matt still had a bishop, the other three rooks (and a couple of black pawns) had disappeared. A remarkable turn-around!
Algis contributed a nice win and Dave won his mini-match by winning game two from a very dubious position after a game one draw, and suddenly the only game remaining was the board one match up. This was a very wild affair with Mike D being material up, but under strong pressure from Richard McNally. Calm defence and consolidation eventually led to a counter attack by Mike where he had two pieces and several pawns against a rook. Mike pushed his queen side pawns against the rather exposed Black king, and with both clocks ticking down Mike kept his calm and wove a beautiful mating net with his minor pieces. The coup de grace was the move Bc8 mate - not something you get to play too often!
|Mike D setting up his mating net in the Board 1 encounter|
So a good time was had by all, and many thanks to Stratford for the invitation and their excellent hospitality - the buffet was much appreciated! We might even consider arranging such an event ourselves in future? But right now, I'm just hoping that we haven't used up too much of our good luck before the season has even started!