Another close match. Neither side was at full strength, and maybe Tynedale were marginally stronger.
First to finish was Tim, who offered a draw after a torrid opening petered out. Maybe I should have persevered, but I was just glad to to get anything. Mariana seemed to have an awkward position with Chris’s Queen well placed on d6, and seemingly in control, but Chris couldn’t find a way through, and a draw was agreed. Peter was on the difficult end of a Bishop and 6(?) pawn endings, Liam had chances but a draw was agreed when he ran short of time. Gary once again carried the team, another fine win, and I believe a Rook sacrifice. David enjoyed his game, and gave John plenty to think about after a difficult opening. Sadly for the Tans, his loss meant the match was drawn.
Even though the Tans have 8 points from 9 matches, they are still not safe. The table shows 8 of the 11 teams all bunched together, with the title still up for grabs, and relegation undecided.
|Tans v Jesmond Knights
|Played at Corbridge Thu 23 Mar 2017
Steve played 9 won 5 drew 2 lost 2 66% average board 3.4
Derek B ” 6 ” 3 ” 1 ” 2 55% ” ” 3.0
Peter C ” 5 ” 2 ” 2 ” 1 60% ” ” 1.0
Dave H ” 5 ” 3 ” 0 ” 2 60% ” ” 5.0
Bruce ” 4 ” 4 ” 0 ” 0 100% ” ” 4.3
Ian ” 3 ” 2 ” 1 ” 0 c85% ” ” 1.7
Alex ” 3 ” 1 ” 0 ” 2 33% ” ” 2.3
David Wr ” 2 ” 1 ” 0 ” 1 50% ” ” 1.0
Gary, Tim, Malcolm and Peter B all played and won one game.
Derek Harris played and drew one game.
Dave Foster jr played and lost one game.
In all, 14 members played for the Reivers.
This match was played at Corbridge on Thursday March 16th, with the following line-up:
- Derek Harris (u) v Noel Boustred (134)
- Alex Ashworth (131) v Tony Neville (92)
- Derek Blair (119) v Dave Turner (107)
- Steve Larkin (120) v Brian Ord (88)
- Bruce Reed (107) v Default
On the face of it, this looked likely to be a comfortable win for the Reivers, the more so when Gosforth’s boards 2 and 3 only arrived after their clocks had been ticking for some twenty minutes (Gosforth had already defaulted on board 5 before the match). But in chess, as we all know, nothing is certain and, sure enough, Derek B and Alex both lost their games in quick succession: I saw nothing of their games and so cannot comment. 1-2
The two remaining games were much longer affairs. Steve’s game involved fierce kingside attacks by both sides, but though Brian fired the first shot, Steve’s response ensured that both queens came off, thereby neutralising Brian’s attack, while also winning rook for pawn. Brian fought a long rearguard action but, once a forced swap of rooks occurred, the writing was on the wall. 2-2
Derek Harris made a welcome return to the club and, though a pawn down in the endgame, managed to hold the drawn position – no mean feat in his first over-the-board game for many months. 2.5-2.5
And so the Reivers completed their season undefeated, with 7 wins and 2 draws from 9 matches, leaving clear water between them and the second-placed side in the division. Congratulations to all involved – a splendid team effort!
The first division is very unpredictable, we have lost some matches we hoped to win, and this was one that on paper we might expect to lose. Three of our opponents are graded above 200, Szymon on board 4 is 179 and Robin is 155. So a glorious result for the Tans, and pride of place goes to Mariana, Gary & Peter.
|Durham v Tynedale Tans
|Played in Durham Tue 8 Mar 2017