Tuesday, 20 March 2018

Short but not Sweet

We lost 3-1 at home to runaway leaders (and already Champions) Olton A last night. Andrew P had a good draw with Phil Holt on Board 1, though for most of the evening it looked like he was going to go a pawn down for nothing. Mike drew against Richard Smith on Board 4 in a crazily exciting game which featured a wide range of material imbalances at different moments. I thought he was winning, but it was not quite to be. Carl then played like a man who has a 7.15 plane to catch the next day, as he saw the chance of a piece sac and went for it. It looked totally unsound to me, and I think he knew it, too! Inevitably Mark Cundy reeled in the full point.

And then there was me on Board 2, needing to win against my perennial nemesis, Alan Lloyd, to save the match. I thought I was better in a R&B ending, but I just couldn't find a way to round up a passed c pawn which Alan was tied down to defending. I forced the rooks off (maybe wrongly) and then without thinking offered a bishop exchange thinking the K&P ending was won for me. But it was a massive hallucination, as in the rook exchange his king had come a square closer to the passed pawn, and instead of me winning it, the pawn won the game. Drats. So instead of a 2-1 draw, it was 3-1 and Olton moved to 12 wins from 12 matches.

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