Away v Banbury A
Tonight we faced Banbury A in division 1 of the Leamington League. Another tough match as we were without Andy Foulds, our board one for this season.
Considering we were outgraded by a good margin on all boards, I think we acquitted ourselves well. No early baths and all the games went to endings.
Kevin was probably unlucky not to get the full point on top board after a very nicely played exchange sacrifice that allowed him to net some extra pawns as well. His opponent, the talented George Vikanis managed to generate checkmating threats and in the end a draw was agreed as Kevin had a perpetual check. Nicely done!
On board two I faced off against Gary Jackson. The last time we met was in the Leamington Rapidplay, when I managed to win a pawn in the opening. Thinking that Gary probably wouldn't fall for this line again in the Scandanavian, I changed tack and went for a Philidor's defense instead. This rapidly turned into the Mestel variation and I had a comfortable position. I should have kept the tension in the game as Gary was using plenty of time over his moves but me being me, I wasn't very well composed and ended up playing cat and mouse in a rook and minor piece ending. Although slightly better, the position was pretty level so we agreed a draw.
On board three, Alan was up against Nathan Manley and had a level position for a long time. Unforutnately, Nathan's pressure and space advantage gradually pressed home and poor Alan couldn't untangle himself from the position. He paid the price for playing too passively and was forced to resign.
On board 4, Abbie was playing Francesco Poderico. Unforutnately, I didn't see too much of this game as I had my back to both of them but when I did look over, Francesco had managed to win a pawn and had a good position in a rook and minor piece ending. He eventually made his material advantage count but not without a bit of a fight!
So, a 3-1 loss but for my money, this was an improvement on the poor display against Solihull the other week and we can take heart from this. It's still a learning curve!
Here is the full scorecard:
|Banbury A||Daventry A|
|1||Vikanis, Georgs (184)||0.5||-||0.5||Bowman, Kevin (144)|
|2||Jackson, Gary C (171)||0.5||-||0.5||Lawson, Timothy (144)|
|3||Manley, Nathan J (156)||1||-||0||Eley, Alan (127)|
|4||Poderico, Francesco (137)||1||-||0||Stevens, Abbie (125)|
And lastly, here is my game. No notes with this one as it's late and there were no obvious blunders, just a gradual wittling away of my advantage from the opening! Even so, sit back and admire the might Philidor's Defense in action!