The club is closed for the Christmas break until 8th January, when the Tom Fuller Cup side have a home match against Petts Wood.
From 1st January Hurst Community Centre is under new management. The company contracted by the council to run the Centre have not yet contacted their customers and there is nothing yet about the takeover on the Hurst Community Centre website. I understand that someone from the company will be talking to us in January.
Sidcup players have been busy representing Kent at various levels this season.
Ian McAllan was in the Kent U-180 team that beat Middlesex at Willesden last month. Gary Sharp has been engaged for both the Under-160 and Under-140 teams, scoring 50 per cent in his two games at the higher level, while winning and drawing in the lower tier. He’s been joined in the Under 140 matches by David Gilbert who has won his only game. Lee Brockwell has been the draw specialist this season, drawing all three of his games for the Under-120s. Chris Cheeseman is playing top board for the Under-100s and is doing well with a commendable win and a draw so far.
At the halfway point the world is looking pretty good for the Kent teams. The Under-180s have won their only match; the Under-160s have a win and a loss; as do the Under-140s; the Under-120s have two wins and one loss; and the Under-100s have won their two matches. All have realistic expectations of making it to the national stages.
Some news from the recent English Chess Federation Annual General Meeting where it was decided by narrow margin, 89 votes to 88, to retain the national stages of the Under-100 County Championship. That must be good news for all the County’s Under-100s.
The Harvey Cup team played Lewisham in the last match of 2013. Four players were unavailable for the match and Lewisham’s 5th board had a higher grade than our 3rd board, but there was an amazing series of blunders and Sidcup won 5 – 1.
The opponents of Ian McAllan and Chris Cheeseman both blundered away their queen and Don Chapman’s good play was helped by the donation of the exchange. There was a reverse when Keith Thompson blundered away a piece, but Gary Sharp’s opponent failed to make his last move before the time control in a level position giving us the match. This was the first time that Gary had ever won on time. Lee Brockwell’s game was the exception to the Christmas generosity. Lee won a pawn, reached a good endgame and then his opponent saw an opportunity to win a piece, took it and found that he had a lost game.
This means that the En Passant Cup and Harvey Cup sides have finished the first half of the season with 100% records.
On Wednesday 4th December the Intro Cup team played Beckenham & Bromley winning 3 – 1. Lee Brockwell unfortunately blundered a piece but even more fortunately mated his opponent. Ken Smith drew and then Phil Broughton, recently returned, played a good game and also mated his opponent. Finally Chris Cheeseman sacrificed for an attack which did not quite get through, but his opponent could only draw through running out of time.
The clubs 1st team played it’s 2nd match last week at home against Gravesend.
After 4 completed games, we led 2.5 to 1.5, after wins from Ken Smith and David Gilbert, and a draw from Ian on top board. This left Gary and David Helps still battling away. Fortunately both managed to achieve a draw, and clinch the points for Sidcup.
So this now makes it 2 from 2 with 4 games to go. We currently share top spot with Lewisham and Petts Wood who also have 2 from 2. So still plenty to do from here, but a good start.