Gary Kasparov wrote that in the 1980s Anatoly Karpov promised his then girlfriend (and now ex-wife) that he would marry her, just as soon as he had regained the world title from Kasparov. In the end Karpov got tired of waiting and married her anyway. Something he presumably regretted in the end (see above.)
So what has all this got to do with Kenilworth Chess Club you may well ask?? The truth is I had hoped to defer my next blog to a point at which I could share news of a thumping individual win and a return to form, but it's not to be and I can't wait any longer. More to the point, the team had a great night last night against Nuneaton B which should be celebrated.
We were outgraded and Mike had clearly eaten his shredded wheat as he destroyed Dave Kearny in 17 moves, wrapping up his evening before 8.30. A Modern Defense in which Mike kept the centre open allowing exchanges on d4 and allowed Mike to liberate his pieces and offer the g pawn in exchange for a rapid attack. Dave declined the pawn and continued developing before Mike found a really clever way to completely overload Dave's queen which netted him two pieces in quick succession and an excellent point.
I didn't see much of Carl's game. but he also went through the gears very smoothly against Tony Green and seemed to win quite comfortably.
Which left me and Dave to finish much, much later. Dave was passive out of the opening and felt Mike Meher missed an opportunity to pick up material, preferring instead to consolidate. Mike then ran very short of time and a draw was agreed, which took us over the line. Another great effort.
My own game really summed up my season to date. Mr Briggs started poorly and I won a pawn out of the opening and was nicely placed. I then got caught in two minds as to how to play the position, ran short of time, lost the thread and had to give the pawn back. We ended up in a wildly complicated ending, which Phil very cheerfully told me afterwards he thought I stood better in. Unfortunately, playing on vapors, his Bishop proved superior to my Knight and we eventually ended up with King and 2 v King and 1. (No prizes for guessing which of us had the one by this stage.) Finally, with Phil down to about two minutes I lost on time in a lost position where my only legal move was to Queen my pawn, which would have allowed Phil's King and Queen to deliver mate in 1. It's a well known motif, but I fear I will dream about if for a while. On the one hand, it was a very good game from a combat perspective, on the other my dreadful run continues. I guess we've all been there.
The good thing is, just as Karpov (and indeed Kasparov) discovered that there is always another wife if you want one (I don't - just for the record!) there is always also another game. What's gone is gone and you have to look forward.
Right now we do so from the top of the Group A Divisional Cup table - and that's what really counts!