Robert won a rook for a knight early on, but then had to trade a rook for a bishop to prevent his queen being trapped, leaving Robert just one pawn up. After some manoeuvring a draw was agreed in this position, with white to move.
Later, Harry Feather checked this position with an online chess engine, which confirmed it was a draw.
Les and his opponent both castled kingside, then traded off queens and minor pieces, leaving Les five pawns down in a rook endgame so he resigned.
Jo and her opponent began by trading knights. Further exchanges followed, leaving them in a deadlocked position. Eric’s game also quickly deadlocked, giving another draw.
Sam and his opponent both castled kingside. After trading off the minor pieces Sam emerged into the endgame with a queen and four pawns against two rooks and six pawns, a small material advantage, but enough for Joel to force a win.
Eric and his opponent both castled kingside, swapping off pieces in an open position, but neither was able to gain any advantage. Eric described the final result as a hard-fought draw.
Robert Nield and his opponent also both castled kingside. After the initial exchanges Robert was left with a knight and four pawns against a bishop and five pawns, a slight material disadvantage, but his opponent’s bishop was badly placed so he resigned.
Gordon and Mick both advanced a rook pawn before move 9, on opposite sides of the board. Then Gordon lost material, going two bishops down, and resigned in the face of a mate threat.
Robert Shaw was the last to finish. He opened quite aggressively, but failed to make any headway. After some manoeuvring he swapped off queens, then minor pieces, ending up with three pawns and a dark squared bishop against four pawns and a light squared bishop. Unable to see any way for either player to get anywhere Robert offered a draw which was soon accepted.
The consensus on the night was that Lindsay had a slight advantage when he agreed the draw, but not sufficient to force mate. Robert might well have found defending the position challenging, but overall a draw was considered reasonable.
We found Sasca’s new venue easily enough, but ran into our first snag when we got out of the car to be met with a locked door. It turned out we’d gone to the wrong entrance, not exactly the best start to the evening.
Unfortunately, I didn’t get a good look at Ashley’s game, but he described it as a thrilling tactical battle, ending in his mate.
Sam pushed a pawn to the seventh rank, but then his opponent mated him on h8, with bishops of b2 and f7. Jo also succumbed to a similar mating pattern, attacked in the corner down the long diagonal.
Early on, Robert manoeuvred his opponent into doubling his pawns, leaving his king open. The game was looking promising, but then Robert blundered away a rook, placing himself at a decisive material disadvantage, and was unable to recover.
Robert Nield castled kingside, establishing a solid defensive position, then swapped down to knight, bishop and six pawns against two knights and four pawns, a slight material advantage, but sufficient to force mate.
Robert Shaw lost material to a fork early on, but then won a rook with a knight fork, leaving him slightly ahead. Once it became clear he couldn’t be prevented from swapping down to a won endgame, his opponent resigned.
Jo and her opponent began by swapping off the light-squared bishops. Exchanges of knights and queens soon followed. After much manoeuvring the game deadlocked. Eric also began with an early queen exchange. With neither player able to gain a clear material advantage this game too deadlocked.
Les castled queenside. In a complicated position he missed a pin, and was mated. Afterwards, he said he’d just been outplayed.
John emerged from the middle game with a rook and three pawns against a rook and four pawns, a slight disadvantage, but not enough to force a win. Instead, a draw was agreed.
Unfortunately, I didn’t get a good look at Pete’s game but Eric’s opponent opened aggressively, pushing a pawn to his seventh rank by move 13. After Eric rebuffed this attack, gaining a queen and rook, his opponent resigned.
Dave ended up with a queen, rook, and three pawns against a queen, bishop and six pawns, not a decisive material advantage for either player, so a draw was agreed. Meanwhile Jo gained a rook for a bishop, but ended up in a king and pawns endgame, so also agreed a draw.
Robert put his opponent under some pressure early on, but after they swapped down to opposite coloured bishops Robert slipped up in the resulting battle of manoeuvre, losing material without compensation. He played on for a bit, looking for a way back, but then his flag fell. Ashley also had a solid opening which fizzled out.
Nomads won the toss, and chose white on odd boards.
Robert emerged from the opening with a bishop and five pawns against a bishop and four pawns. After much manoeuvring, he miscalculated, ending up in this position:
Seeing no way to prevent his opponent forcing promotion, Robert resigned.
Eric’s game began well, but eventually deadlocked, ending in an agreed draw. Duncan went a pawn down, and never quite recovered. Francesca also lost material early on, and eventually resigned.
Jo maintained material parity, ending up with a queen, two rooks, and seven pawns against a queen, two rooks, a knight, and four pawns. However, he defended well, holding Jo at bay until her flag fell.
Meanwhile, Les emerged into a bishop and pawns endgame two pawns up, with a clear time advantage. Before long, his opponent resigned.
Eric castled kingside, with good early development, swapping down to two rooks each, with a pawn advantage. After the rooks went too, both players promoted simultaneously, but then Eric forced a second promotion, and his opponent resigned.
Robert sacrificed a knight on f7 for positional advantage, and came out of the resulting exchanges a minor piece up, eventually ending up with a knight and pawns against a bare king, then sacrificed the knight to allow a quick pawn promotion. His opponent resigned soon after.
Jo won material early on, having a two rook advantage at one point, and delivered mate on move 37, with her queen on her opponent’s first rank, behind his king.
Dave also won material early on, capturing his opponents queen on move 23. Mate quickly followed.
After some initial gains Ashley agreed a draw in a deeply unclear position.