Monday, 5 November 2018

High Apple Pie In The Sky Hopes

Like Frank Sinatra I had high hopes for this one with Bernard on top board. But also like Frank, they turned out to be apple pie in the sky hopes.
First to finish was Jude. I did not see the opening but early on Jude established a powerful attack on Mike [Two-Clubs] Johnson's King position, winning  a pawn. Jude missed some possible middle game chances. In the endgame he felt Mike Two-Clubs was threatening to win the pawn back in a four v five pawn endgame and offered a draw which was duly accepted by Two-Clubs.
Next finish was me. Lazy thinking on my part - once again - resulted in me playing like a lemon mixing up two King's Indian Systems. My opponent, Nigel, played his usual mechanical opening stuff and completely annihilated me. Our pie was now in desperate need of some cream to pour over our troubled waters! I do love a mixed metaphor.
Could this be poured on by Matt? No. In his own words " I played a Scandinavian as Black and received a lot of early pressure on the e6 pawn. Avoiding the threat of a scary looking sacrifice around and uncastled King cast me my favourite pawn and White more than maintained the advantage through the middle game, with my rooks unable to move to the second rank. There was still some hope going into the endgame but then I lost'. In fact the last move was a simple king/rook fork, costing Matt the rook at which point he resigned after what looked to me a well-fought game.
With all hope of a victory now revealed for the pie in the sky it perhaps always had been all pressure was off Bernard who in any case had slightly the better of it on board one at this stage - better pawn structure and the opponent King slightly exposed. I only saw the final, exciting, stages of the game in which Bernard's opponent made a - not obviously - unsound sacrifice. Bernard, as is his custom 'saw all' and won a knight. To be fair if Black had not gone for the sac he would probably have been ground down in the endgame anyway. I understand this was Bernard's first competitive win since 2011.

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