European Team Championship: England Round 5 Report

European Team Championship: England Round 5 Report

| 1 | Chess Event Coverage

  In round 5 England were playing against 7th seeds Spain. They fought hard and came away with a well earned 2-2 draw.

 Top board was an all 2700+ clash between Michael Adams and Alexei Shirov. Micky gained a slight edge in a Ruy Lopez and some pressure with the two Bishops. Shirov played accurately and swapped off into a rook+pawn ending where he was minutely worse. He held with ease.

 On an individual front Mark Hebden is on 4/5 and has a 2701 performance. Michael Adams has 2.5/4 and is performing at 2733.

 For the women Ingrid Lauterbach has 2/5 and is performing at 2225, 100 points above her current rating.

 On board 2 Gawain Jones had Black against Vallejo Pons,F (2660). Gawain played the solid Accelerated Dragon and Vallejo gained a slight edge. Vallejo slowly gained control and started to attack the weak d6 pawn. Gawain was never able to get much counterplay and Vallejo won on move 39.

 Board 3 saw something unprecedented in this tournament. Mark Hebden had the White pieces! After scoring 3/4 with Black, Mark was rewarded with the advantage of the 1st move, an advantage he never gave up. He sacked a pawn against Miguel Illecas Cordoba (2598) and I shall analyse his attacking win in my next update.

 Stuart Conquest held a quick draw on the Black side of a Sicilian against Marc Narciso Dublan (2546).

 The women lost a close match against higher seeded Romania by 2.5-1.5.

 Jovanka Houska looked to have gained some advantage in a Sicilian against Corina-Isabela Peptan (2405) but an inaccuracy allowed Peptan to equalise. The players decided to repeat moves and the game finished a draw on 31 moves.

 Dagne Ciuksyte scored her first victory of the event as Black in a complicated Sicilian against Carmen Volcu (2333). I will analyse this, as well as Mark's game, in a double game special update on Sunday evening!

 Board 3 and 4 were always going to be tough with Ingrid Lauterbach and Meri Grigoryan-Lyell both facing much higher opponents. They both put up strong fights and can count themselves unlucky not to come away with something fromt the games. They went down in 52 and 68 moves respecively.

 A solid day for both teams, though the women will feel they deserved a draw.

 The Men have now won 2, drawn 2 and lost 1. They have 12.5/20 game points.

 The Women have won 2 and lost 3. They have 7/20 game points.

 After 5 rounds Russia lead the 'Unrestricted' section with 5/5 match wins and 15 game points ahead of surprise package Slovenia in 2nd. England are 12th (they're 16th seeds).

 In the Women's section Poland lead a tight section ahead of Georgia and Russia. England are in 22nd (they're 20th seeds).

 Mark Hebden is the leading England scorer with 4/5 and a 2701 rating performance.

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