Ludlow Chess Club

Ludlow v Telepost (H) 4 November

Ludlow made a few steps towards holding their in the First Division: a 2-3 loss. Richard and David lost on boards 1 and 2. However, Bob and John both drew their games on boards 3 and 4, and Paul recorded the first individual win of the season for the Club on board 5.

My game on board 1 against Nigel Ferrington reached the following position:
This is a good illustration of what a player rated 38 point above me is seeing that I am not. I looked at the only two moves for black. Bf7 and gf. I did not look at gf properly. I saw …gf, ef Bd5. I had some general notions about not liking the weak white squares around my king after the Bishops are exchanged. My opponent had seen much further: instead of ef he intended to play Nc3 preventing Bishop d5 and temporarily sacrificing a pawn which he would almost certainly win back. I should have been able to see this but did not. gf was probably the best move. I know that if I want to improve, I must be more thorough. In fact, I played Bf7 and after fg Bxg6, I hoped that my Knight would be strong on b4. I caused some minor irritation but I soon ran out of plans. My opponent launched a king side attack and after a few weak moves, I lost the game.

Ludlow v Wellington (A) 21 October

Ludlow once again found themselves heavily out-graded, losing the match 0.5 - 4.5. In my game, after a dubious opening in which I moved my Queen no less than 9 times in my first 19 moves, I decided to accept Toby Neal’s offer of a pawn and try to hang on. We reached this position:
It was my opponent (Black) to move. I found it very difficult to analyse the two Knight sacs: on f3 and h3. I could not see through any of the complications. It was more a case not wanting to find desperate defensive measures that I might not need. It is quite possible that neither of the sacs are any good. Anyhow, to my great relief, my opponent played 21…Qc8. The game continued 22 f3 Bd7 23 Nf2 Ne6 24 Bc1 Nf4 25 Bxf4 ef 26 Nd2 a4 27 Ng4. At this point, a pawn up, I offered a draw as I had only 15 minutes left on my clock to my opponent’s 25, and the result of the match was already decided.

Jack on board five was doing very well. His opponent had sacrifice two pieces for a rook. Unfortunately, with only 10 minutes left, Jack (who is an ungraded junior) made a couple of blunders under pressure. I wonder how good he could he could be with some serious study and a few more tournament games under his belt.

Ludlow v Owestry (H) 7 October 2014

If Ludlow Chess Club does not shine this season, I think that we can boast that we have the best venue in the League. The Feathers Hotel provides us with a quiet, well-lit room with free coffee. There is a lovely bar for opposition teams to enjoy after, or preferably, before matches.

Richard (170) 0.5 - 0.5 R Bryant (178)
John (131) 0.5 - 0.5 B Whtye (176)
Bob (130) 0 - 1 D Bennion (158)
Paul (111) 0.5 - 0.5 G Ives (133)
Keith (105) 0 - 1 K Grice (121)

A 1.5 - 3.5 is not a bad result given that we were out-graded on every board. My game against Richard Bryant was interesting. I played e6 and d5 against his Grand Prix Attack. The centre became closed. It looked as if he could generate a dangerous attack by pushing the pawns in front of his king. I had a couple of tactical resources that enabled me to organise my defence and at one point I think I stood slightly better. I lost this initiative and, if anything, my opponent had the upper hand when he accepted my draw offer.

Congratulations to John for holding a play graded 45 points more than himself to a draw.

In Paul’s game, he had control of the long diagonal with his white bishop and queen. His opponent pushed his pawn up to attack the bishop and force it of the diagonal. Paul decided not to retreat. He sacrificed the Bishop for the pawn on g6. His opponent took with his pawn on f7 and Paul followed up with knight takes g6 forking rook and bishop hoping for the reply with h takes knight (a second piece sacked) when his Queen would have followed up by taking the pawn on g6 calling check and allowing a forced draw with perpetual check! However, his opponent refused the knight just moving his rook to f7 leaving Paul with two pawns for the bishop. He had to exchange the knight for his black bishop. All this left his opponent with an open King side and an isolated h pawn. From then on Paul was on the defensive as his opponent had the extra piece but as the position simplified with the exchange of most of the major pieces Paul was left with a three pawn advantage with rook against rook and Knight with only three pawns left. Also Paul was about to win another pawn so at that stage he probably had a stronger position but was getting short of time. Paul’s opponent then accepted a draw offered earlier when the position was much less clear and they shook hands.

Ludlow Club Championship 9 September 2014

Total Position
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
1 Richard x 1 1 1 1 1 1 6 1
2 Joe 0 x 1 1 1 1 1 5 2
3 Bob 0 0 x 1 1 0 1 3 3
4 John 0 0 0 x 1 1 0 2 4=
5 Paul 0 0 0 0 x 0 1 1 7
6 Alan 0 0 1 0 1 x 0 2 4=
7 Keith 0 0 0 1 0 1 x 2 4=


Ludlow Chess Club Results: Ludlow are Division Two Champions!

For details of results, visit Shropshire Chess Association