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Final 4NCL Report - did we get promoted?!!

The answer is.... yes! More on that later. The final 4NCL took place over the May Bank holiday weekend in Hinckley Island (in the middle of England basically). 3 Divisions (and a Divison 3 North at a seperate venue), 70+ teams, and about 500 players all in the same venue to decide the Championships, promotions and relegations for another year.

As you can see from my last blog post going into the final weekend in Division one Wood Green were favourites to take the title and they wrapped it up with a round to spare with a comfortable win over Cheddleton in round 10. Here's the board 1 clash from the encounter:

A nice game from the English number 1!

Elsewhere Guildford 1 won 2/3 matches to take 2nd but the stars of the weekend were White Rose 1 who won all 3 of their matches, including against Guildford, to take 3rd place! They beat a team comprising of 7GMs! Match card below:

White Rose 1 2357   Guildford 1 2531
141 w Jones, Gawain CB g 2635 0 - 1 Short, Nigel D g 2697
142 b Wells, Peter K g 2499 0 - 1 Edouard, Romain g 2607
143 w Palliser, Richard JD m 2452 1 - 0 Stefanova, Antoaneta g 2531
144 b McNab, Colin A g 2438 1 - 0 Smerdon, David g 2512
145 w Gourlay, Iain f 2351 1 - 0 Conquest, Stuart C g 2509
146 b Townsend, M Paul   2255 ½ - ½ Kosten, Anthony C g 2492
147 w Weller, Jean-Luc   2282 j 1 - 0 Plaskett, H James g 2480
148 b Flint, Martina w 1946 c 0 - 1 Camacho Collados, Marcos   2422
             
  4½ - 3½  

Now to Division 2: The division was won comfortably by AMCA Dragons but the fight for the other 3 promotion spots was fierce! We had to win all 3 of our matches to be sure of promotion and that's exactly what we did. I scored 2.5/3 (which I was pleased with) and I may do another update on my own games at a later date but for this weekend I played on board 2 below a wildcard addition to the team, a junior from the Netherlands - GM Robin Van Kempen. In round nine he finished off his game with a nice tactic. See if you can solve the puzzle:

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