Stevenson – 22.3.2017

Sidcup hosted Lewisham on 22/03/2017 in the Stevenson, and after getting a draw against leaders Sevenoaks the week before needed to win to qualify for the knockout stages.

Rob Pezet started poorly and found himself in a lot of trouble very early on, however as is often the case with Rob he found another Houdini type escape and went on to register our first win. Tony Packham then converted a tricky rook and pawn end game in which he was a pawn up.
David Gilbert and Ian McAllan then registered hard fought draws taking the score to 3 -1. This left 2 games remaining, and leaving Sidcup needing one draw to win.

Gary Sharp always had a tough ask, being out-graded by 20 points, and although he fought hard he eventually lost. This left David Helps being materially level, but with a slightly inferior position, to get the draw. Which to everybody’s relief he did when his opponent accepted a draw was the best he could achieve, and agreed the draw.

As a result, Sidcup now look forward to the semi-finals and discovering who our opponents will be.

Congratulation to the team on achieving this

Lee Brockwell

Stevenson – Sidcup V Gravesend

Sidcup’s 1st team continued their strong run with a 4th straight win in the Stevenson league against Gravesend away.

Wins from Ian McAllan, Tony Packham, Rob Pezet, and David Helps resulted in a 4 – 2 score line to Sidcup.

This leaves us in equal 2nd place, with 2 games to play.

Up next we host the leaders Sevenoaks, and then we finish with Lewisham, the team we are tied with.

So an exciting finish beckons and playing the competing teams leaves our progress entirely in our own hands.

Lee Brockwell

Stevenson Update

When entering a team in the Stevenson Kent league we always knew it would be a tall order. As even with our strongest available side we would be giving 10 grading points. So, when we were unable to field full strength teams it was no surprise we lost our first 2 games. However, they were narrow losses, which was encouraging.

Since then we have been fortunate to gain Greg Edwards to strengthen the team on board 1, in addition to everybody being available since then.
As a result, we had a good win against Lewisham in our next game. Then faced Dartford at home.

This was a very tight affair in which after 5 draws, this left Tony Packham with the fate of the team in his hands. Fortunately, Tony managed to find a way to win and provide our second victory.

Finally, last Wednesday we hosted Gravesend. After an early draw on board 1 for Greg, we went 1 down after David Helps lost on board 6. This was followed by another loss when Rob Pezet lost on board 4 in a very sharp French defence game, which had everyone guessing who was winning for long periods. This left us 2 down with 3 still playing. However, this was soon put to rights when Gary Sharp won an endgame which looked tricky to win, and Ian McAllan converted a winning position with time tight for both players. So once again we were all level and Tony Packham was left contesting the final game. As usual he didn’t disappoint winning an end game in which material was even, but his active pieces eventually managed to dominate after he showed just the right level of patient play.

This has given us 3 wins in a row and a current standing of Won 3 lost 2.
Next game is Gravesend away.

Lee Brockwell Match Captain

21.10.16 – En Passant

Sidcup went to Dartford on Thursday 20th Oct to play their first En Passant of the season against last year’s champions.

Fortunately everybody was available and we were able to field our strongest team against what is always a very strong Dartford team.

Whilst the match ebbed and flowed during the evening, fine winning performances by Ian McAllan, Gary Sharp, David Gilbert, and a draw by Robert Pezet, resulted in a 3.5 – 2.5 win for Sidcup.

After a first rate start our campaign continues with a tricky away match at Gravesend on Monday the 24th.

Lee Brockwell – En Passant Captain

Tom Fuller – Sidcup V Beckenham

The 3rd team played their final Tom Fuller league fixture against league leaders Beckenham, knowing a win was essential to guarantee progression to the semi-final stage.

The teams were evenly matched and grades suggested we should win the top 2 boards, and lose the bottom 2.

However junior David Dallakyan bucked the grading and produced his debut win for the club on board 3, against the experienced Alan Fraser.

David Helps then provided a 2nd win on board 1 after his opponent left his queen en prise.

The final 2 games were quite even until Don Chapman blundered a piece and eventually lost.

This left everything depending on Bob Mitchell, who’s opponent was in time trouble in a very locked up position. They played on for some time keeping the crowd on tender hooks, but eventually the position become completely locked and they agreed a draw.

Result Sidcup 2.5 – Beckenham 1.5

Lee Brockwell

Sidcup V Beckenham – En Passant – 13.1.16

Sidcup’s first team hosted Beckenham for their 3rd En Passant league match of the season on Wednesday. Having so far won 1 and lost 1.

So this was a must win if we were to have any chance of qualifying for the knock out stages.

David Gilbert was the first to finish, agreeing a draw on board 3. Rob Pezet then managed a fine win on board 2 against an opponent graded 13 points above him at 155. Bob Mitchell followed this with an agreed draw in a queen and rook end game which was going around in circles on board 5. I then managed to win a game in which positional advantage seemed to ebb and flow considerably. At one point I though the position lost, yet was surprised to find after that Fritz maintained I was never behind.

This left us 3 – 1 up with 2 games still active. Ian on board 1 and David on board 5. David Helps clinched the win with a fine display, which ended with a combination trapping his opponent’s queen.

Ian eventually lost an end game in which he was well behind on material.

So a great result for the club – Sidcup 4 Beckenham 2.

The below is an interesting position I found myself in towards the end of my game. With little time left and possibly quite a lot of play, I was looking for a quick mate or way to win quickly. Fortunately my opponent blundered and saved the possibility of me losing on time.

However I never found the mate. When I went over the game later I found there was a mate in 3 for white which I missed.

See if you can find it.

Position
Position

Lee Brockwell

Sidcup v Charlton – Tom Fuller – 6.1.16

Sidcup hosted Charlton in their 3rd Tom Fuller league match on Wednesday the 6th January, in their first 2016 fixture.

Bob Mitchell led from the front on board 1 and recorded an early win, after his opponent played an debatable knight sacrifice, when underdeveloped. Bob took advantage of this and delivered a convincing attack to win early.

Lee Brockwell, on board 2, was offered a draw shortly after.

At this point board 3 was even and board 4 was looking like a win. Masud was a piece in front and had a strong attack building. Having refused a couple recently in similar situations and going on to lose tricky end games, I was determined to put the team first this time and took the draw.
However one can never be sure at this level, and shortly after, Masud gave back his piece advantage and lost the initiative. There was a noticeable change in body language, with Masud looking like he had given up for a couple of moves, when he lost another pawn. However he regrouped and made it difficult for his opponent, who eventually blundered a piece after leaving a knight defended by a pawn which was pinned and couldn’t be used to take back without losing his queen when the pin was removed. Surprisingly not only did he miss the loss of his knight, he touched the pawn and knight before realising, but was forced to take and lose his queen.

A resignation followed immediately which clinched the match. Sarah played her usual solid game and eventually agreed a draw in a very tight, well matched game.

Final result Sidcup 3 Charlton 1.
League situation: Played 3 Won 2 drawn 1.

Lee Brockwell

Sidcup V Petts Wood – Tom Fuller – 30.10.15

Sidcup travelled to Petts Wood for their first Tom Fuller fixture on Friday with a team of David Helps, Lee Brockwell, Chris Cheeseman, and Masud Hoque.

Following his confidence building win at Lewisham earlier in the week, David made fairly short work of this test, after his opponent blundered a rook early on.

Masud then managed to win a very sharp game against an improving junior.

Chris then offered his opponent a draw despite having the better position following his usual sacrifice, to try and secure the team win and it was accepted, guaranteeing the team win.

I finally managed to win my game after winning the exchange in the middle game.

Final result Sidcup 3.5 Petts Wood 0.5

Lee Brockwell

Lewisham V Sidcup – En Passant – 28.10.15

The first team went to Lewisham on the 28th Oct for their second fixture in the En Passant league, with a slightly different team to the first match.

Lewisham fielded quite a weak team based on grading, for some reason, so we were heavy favourites on paper. However 3 of their team were estimate grades, and these tend to under estimate the opponent. Anyway despite things not looking at all clear for a long way into the match we came away with a convincing 5.5 to 0.5 win.

Ken Smith got in front on material early on, but then conceded the advantage. However he eventually won convincingly.

David Gilbert and David Helps played solid games and eventually ground out a good wins.
This left Robert, Ian, and Gary.

Robert’s game was very interesting, in that he deliberately allowed his queen to be trapped, but was convinced he’d picked up enough material on the way to that to be in front. I can’t say I agreed with that view and nor did others, however surprisingly Fritz does agree with his view, although the handling of his position from that point had to be played very accurately. Which he did.

However I was convinced that he could have saved his Queen by giving up a piece, and Fritz also agrees with this, and he could have won the game far easier than he did. I’ve attached the game and my analysis comments below. It’s worth a look if only to become familiar with Blacks very odd opening, which despite 3 pawn sacrifices, would have been in front if he’d played the correct move following Robert’s unorthodox QF3.

Ian’s game caused great controversy after his flag fell at the first time check, and neither player had recorded the last moves to know if 35 had been reached. There was also a further dispute about whether the clock was faulty, and the flag had fallen early. In the end Ian refused the offer of a draw and the game was replayed and the missing moves recorded to work out if 35 moves had indeed been played. It turned out that 35 moves had been played and Ian was safe. He then went on to win the game, playing the end game accurately, and making a very late night of it.

Gary eventually agreed a draw to a game which was very locked up by pawns. He had the better position, but unfortunately any way to open things up just played into his opponents hands and equalised the game.

So we now stand as  – played 2, won 1, Lost 1.

Lee Brockwell

Sidcup v Dartford – 26.2.15

Sidcup went to league leaders Dartford on Thursday, needing a win to give them any chance of qualifying for the knockout stages.

Prior to this game we had achieved a 50% record with 2 wins, 2 loses, and a draw.

It was always going to be a tough ask, especially with 2 regular first team players away, but it turned out to be a close fought match.

Ken Smith was disappointed with his performance succumbing to an early loss on board 4. Keith Thompson then followed this with a draw on board 6, despite being out-graded by nearly 30 points, and playing his first game for the first team. Lee Brockwell on Board 5 then followed with another draw.

The remaining 3 games all went to the wire, with the clock playing a massive part. Ian McAllan on board 1 saw his opponent withstand a strong king side attack, which then left Ian in time trouble. Despite coming through the time control with his position intact, Ian was unaware that the time control had been reached and played the next 2 moves instantly, believing he still had moves to make. Those moves were critical and turned a potential winning position into a position which was eventually played to a draw. David Gilbert on board 3 then delivered a fine win, in a finely edged position, where his better time management probably made all the difference. This left everything hinging on board 2 and Gary Sharp. Time once again was key here, and Gary was always behind on that score. Unfortunately it was the type of end game which needed a large number of moves to see completion. This played into his opponent’s hands, who played solid moves, knowing Gary’s clock would run out eventually. This it duly did, giving Dartford a well-earned 3.5 to 2.5 win.

So far our experiment of playing in the stronger En Passant league, has been positive and we have acquitted ourselves well. It’s also giving the better players more games which can only be beneficial.

Lee Brockwell