Ravenfield Bishops vs Nomads 400

Ravenfield Bishops 2 1/2 3 1/2 Nomads 400
Tim Gollens (w) 0 1 Peter Morton
David Tate 1 0 Keith Wicks
Andrew Shaw 1/2 1/2 Eric McKenna
Brian England 0 1 Robert Nield
Barry Shaw 0 1 Jo Woollard
D Hill 1 0 Robert Shaw

Robert Shaw got his bishop trapped early on, so was a piece down for most of his game. When his opponent forced a mate in 2, Robert resigned.

Peter and Tim both castled kingside. Peter gained a pawn. After further manoeuvring left Peter a s rook up, Tim resigned. Robert Nield gained a knight, then mated Brian.

Jo and Barry traded off the light-squared bishops, castling king-side. After further exchanges left Jo with a queen, rook and single pawn against a knight, rook and five pawn Barry resigned while Eric’s game deadlocked.

Keith ended up with two rooks and two bishops against two rooks, a bishop and knight, but resigned once David forced promotion.

Stannington vs Nomads 400

Stannington 3 1/2 1/2 Nomads 400
James Allen (b) 1 0 Eric McKenna
Paul Cheshire 1/2 1/2 Jo Woollard
Francis L Kay 1 0 Robert Shaw
Glen Marvin 1 0 Gordon Shaw

Nomads won the toss, and chose white on odd boards.

Playing against the French Defence, Robert lost two rooks in quick succession to knight forks, ending up with a decisive material disadvantage, and resigned. Gordon and Glen both castled king-side, exchanging minor pieces, but after Glen’s queen captured Gordon’s a8 rook he too was faced with a decisive material disadvantage, and resigned.

Eric and his opponent traded off pieces. After 33 moves each, Eric was left with a rook, bishop and three pawns against a rook, knight and five pawns. Recognising his opponent’s pawn majority would be decisive he also resigned.

Meanwhile, Jo and Paul maintained approximate material parity. Jo had a well placed knight, and Paul had doubled pawns, but this did not prove to be quite enough for a win. After both players’ attacks fizzled out they agreed a draw, saving Nomads from a complete whitewash.

Ecclesall vs Nomads 400

Ecclesall 2 2 Nomads 400
John Speck (w) 1/2 1/2 Eric McKenna
Ivan Basarab-Horwath 1 0 Jo Woollard
Mike Howarth 1/2 1/2 Dave Kesteven
Alex Parker 1 0 Robert Shaw

Eric traded minor pieces with his opponent, maintaining material parity, but eventually deadlocked. While one of them might have had a theoretical advantage, they’d have probably run afoul of the fifty move rule trying to exploit it, so a draw was agreed.

Dave’s opponent castled first, kingside. After some tense manoeuvring they ended up with a rook and four pawns each, then quickly agreed a draw.

Robert made some questionable moves early on, but won a knight with a fork, and kept this material advantage throughout the game, ending up with a rook, bishop and two pawns against just a rook and two pawns. He also had an extra fifteen minutes on the clock. A draw might still have been achievable for Alex, but then he lost his rook and resigned.

R Shaw vs A Parker

Darnall & Handsworth B vs Nomads D

Darnall 3 1/2 2 1/2 Nomads D
Danny Dawson 1 0 Les Day (w)
Craig Chatterton 1/2 1/2 Eric McKenna
Robert Black 1/2 1/2 Jo Woollard
Harry Feather 1/2 1/2 Robert Shaw
Bob Lindsay 0 1 Gordon Shaw
Joel Fair 1 0 Sam Humphrey

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.

Nomads 400 vs Stannington

Nomads 400 1/2 3 1/2 Stannington
Eric McKenna(b) 0 1 Kevin Keenan
Jo Woollard 1/2 1/2 James Allen
Robert Shaw 0 1 Francis Kay
Gordon Shaw 0 1 Glen Marvin

Eric swapped knight for bishop, then both players castled kingside. After a few more exchanges they were each left with a queen, rook, knight and four pawns, but while they had material parity Eric was coming under time pressure. When his opponent threatened promotion Eric lost a rook for a knight, then resigned.

Robert’s opponent played the English opening. Robert was quickly outmanoeuvred, and resigned on move 22, facing a mate in 2.

Gordon avoided any early exchanges, but eventually went a knight and pawn down, then his opponent won a rook with a knight fork. Faced with a decisive material loss Gordon resigned.

Jo was the last to finish. After a quiet opening she went into the endgame with a rook, bishop and five pawns against a rook, knight and five pawns, then won pawns with a discovered check, but her opponent regained one of the lost pawns. After 39 moves each, they ended up in this position, with Jo to move:

Here Jo and her opponent agreed a draw, thus preventing a complete whitewash of Nomads.

Ravenfield vs Nomads 400

Ravenfield 2 2 Nomads 400
David Hill 0 1 Eric McKenna (b)
Michael Hoyes 0 1 Jo Woollard
Andrew Rangecroft 1 0 Robert Shaw
John Beasley 1 0 Sam Humphrey

Eric and his opponent both castled kingside, then traded off minor pieces, leaving Eric with two rooks, a bishop and seven pawns against two rooks, a knight and six pawns, then Eric won a rook for a bishop, which proved decisive.

Jo won a queen with a bishop fork fairly early on, ending up with a rook and seven pawns against just four pawns, after which her opponent resigned.

Robert won a rook for a knight early on, but at the cost of positional weakness. His opponent soon won the lost material back, then forced mate.

Sam had good early development, tried a sacrifice which worked well enough, then attempted a second sacrifice which didn’t go so well, and resigned in the face of inevitable mate.

Nomads D vs Ravenfield

Nomads D 3 1/2 2 1/2 Ravenfield Bishops
John Woollard (w) 1/2 1/2 Tom Gollens
Les Day 0 1 Andrew Shaw
Eric McKenna 1/2 1/2 Brian England
Jo Woollard 1/2 1/2 Barry Shaw
Robert Shaw 1 0 Roy Evans
Robert Nield 1 0 Martin Wilkes

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.

Worksop C vs Nomads D

Worksop C 3 3 Nomads D
Andrew Smith (b) 0 1 Pete Morton (w)
Ian Barker 0 1 Eric McKenna
H Osbourne 0.5 0.5 Dave Kesteven
Alan Story 1 0 Robert Shaw
Cliff Briggs 0.5 0.5 Jo Woollard
David Bedwall 1 0 Ashley Rogers

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 400 vs Ecclesall

Nomads 400 1.5 2.5 Ecclesall
Eric Mckenna 0.5 0.5 John Speck
Robert Shaw 0 1 Ivan Basarab-Horwath
Reggie Kush 1 0 John Eddershaw
Jo Woollard 0 1 Alex Parker

Robert won a rook for a knight, but then lost a rook to an attack on the long diagonal. Unable to recover, he eventually resigned. Eric and John exchanged bishops early on, producing an open position which soon deadlocked, leading to an agreed draw.

Reggie, in his first game for the club, smoothly won a queen, ending up with a queen, rook, and pawns against just a rook and pawns. Before long, his opponent resigned.

Jo was the last to finish. She’d castled king-side while Alex had castled queen-side. After her opponent won a rook with clever manoeuvring, Jo was left with a queen, rook and six pawns against a queen, rook, bishop and three pawns – nominal material parity, but an inferior position. Running short on time, and faced with some strong mate threats, Jo resigned.

Overall, a disappointing result, but an excellent performance from Reggie in his first match for us.

Nomads D vs Ravenfield

Nomads D 1.5 4.5 Ravenfield
Duncan Chambers (w) 0 1 Tim Gollens
Les Day 1 0 Andrew Shaw
Eric Mckenna 0.5 0.5 Roy Evans
Robert Shaw 0 1 Barry Shaw
Jo Woollard 0 1 D Hill
Francesca Biggio 0 1 M Wilkes

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.

Nomads 400 vs Barnsley

Nomads 400 2 2 Barnsley
Eric Mckenna (b) 0 1 A Steele
Robert Shaw 0 1 A Taylor
Jo Woollard 1 0 M Charlton
Ashley Rogers 1 0 M Anderson

Robert opened poorly, and was mated on move 14. Eric had a promising start, but was eventually outplayed. Unfortunately, I didn’t get a good look at Ashley’s game, but he seemed to win without major problems.

Jo reached the end game with two rooks, the bishop pair, and six pawns against a knight, bishop, and five pawns, a clear advantage. She marched her b pawn up the board, but her opponent resigned just as she was about to queen it.

Nomads 400 vs Ravenfield 11-10-16

Nomads 400 2 2 Ravenfield Bishops
Eric Mckenna (b) 1 0 B England
Robert Shaw 0 1 D Hill
Jo Woollard 0 1 M Wilkes
Gordon Shaw 1 0 P Sherman

Robert and his opponent lost their queens in quick succession. Eventually, his opponent forced material gain with a promotion threat. Robert played on for a while, but eventually resigned.

Eric castled kingside while his opponent developed his queen early. Eric gained material, then exchanged queens, leaving him with two rooks, a bishop, a knight, and six pawns against two rook and five pawns, a decisive material advantage. Mate soon follow.

Gordon soon gained a knight, then swapped down, ending with a queen, two rooks and three pawns against a queen, single rook, and three pawns. Faced with the forced capture of his queen Gordon’s opponent resigned.

Jo and her opponent both castled kingside, swapping off minor pieces and reaching this position on move 36.


The game was looking drawish, but Jo had a few minutes less on the clock so eventually ran out of time.

Sasca E vs Nomads D Oct 3rd, 2016

Sasca E Nomads D
D Evans (w) 0 1 Eric McKenna (b)
A Wilson 0 1 Robert Shaw
M Atkinson 0 1 Jo Woollard
J Sexton 0 1 Dave Kesteven
W Peck Ashley Rogers

Sasca won the toss, and chose white on odds.

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.

Nomads 400 vs Barnsley

Nomads 3 1 Barnsley
Eric McKenna (b) 0.5 0.5 Russell Roe
Robert Shaw 1 0 Anthony Steele
Jo Woollard 0.5 0.5 Alan Taylor
Gordon Shaw 1 0 Michael Charlton

Against Eric, Russell played the English Opening, 1 c4. Eric established a solid defensive position, exchanging off knights then bishops, leading to a quiet game which eventually deadlocked. Robert opened with the Italian Game, producing an even-looking position. When Robert managed to gain a queen, Anthony resigned.

Jo felt on the back foot for most of her game, but managed to maintain material parity. After swapping off most of the pieces, she went into the endgame with a rook and five pawns against a rook and six pawns, but extra ten minutes on the clock. Neither player had any clear way to force promotion, so a draw was agreed.

Gordon won a rook for a bishop early on, then gained a bishop before winning the queen, ending up with a queen, two rooks and six pawns, one on the seventh rank, against a single rook and just four pawns, none of them past their fourth rank. Facing mate, his opponent resigned.

Worksop C vs Nomads D

Worksop C Nomads D
Andrew Smith (w) 1/2 1/2 Eric McKenna (b)
Ian Barker 0 1 Robert Shaw
H Osbourne 0 1 Jo Woollard
Alan Story 1 0 Dave Kesteven
A Proctor 1 0 Gordon Shaw
Ross Phillips 0 1 Sam Humphrey

Eric gained a pawn early on, then castled king-side, exchanging queens on move 12, then bishops. Soon after, the position deadlocked, and a draw was agreed.

Robert won a bishop, completely missed a chance to capture Ian’s queen, but still managed to find a checkmate.

Jo and her opponent exchanged off both bishops, then she castled king-side and won the queen, leaving her with a queen, a rook, two knights, and six pawns, against a rook, two knights, and six pawns. Once she developed a strong mating threat Osbourne resigned.

The early exchanges left Dave with a queen, rook, bishop, and six pawns against a queen, rook, bishop, and five pawns. Dave then lost a bishop for a pawn, but delivered mate with his queen and rook.

Gordon won a bishop early on, then swapped one of the rooks off. Soon after, Gordon’s king came under attack. To block the mate threat he would have needed to sacrifice material, and still been left facing connected passed pawns, so he decided to resign rather than play on in an unviable position.

Sam offered Ross his knight on move 9, in an attempt to break open Ross’s pawns, but Ross declined this gambit. However, Sam still got his queen to g6, checking Ross’s castled king, then brought his bishop to h6, before putting his queen on h5, setting up a potential discovered check. Once he drove Ross’s queen off the seventh rank, mate quickly followed, Sam’s first victory for our club.

Nomads D vs Woodseats B

Nomads D Woodseats B
Keith Wicks (b) 0.5 0.5 Steve Moon
Eric McKenna 0.5 0.5 Brendan Ashmore
Robert Shaw 0 1 Dave Cook
Jo Woollard 1 0 Michael Mullin
Sam Humphrey 0 1 David Margenson
Ashley Rogers 0 1 Martyn Edwards

Keith was the first to finish. When Steve accidentally touched his own queen, forcing him to lose it, Keith sportingly offered him a draw instead. Eric played the English Opening, leading a deadlocked position, and a second draw.

After much manoeuvring, Ashley was checkmated while Sam’s opponent forced promotion. However, Jo had a strong queenside attack which culminated in mate, with her queen on f7, supported by a pawn.

Early on, Robert traded his queen for a rook and knight rather than losing an whole piece, but blundered away his own knight. Fortunately, he somehow managed to regain a rook, leaving him level on material. After swapping down to a pawn-only endgame, both players promoted on move 40. Robert had a pawn advantage, and a few more minutes on the clock, but didn’t feel this was enough to win, so a draw was agreed.

Sasca E vs Nomads D

Sasca E Nomads D
M Hemmingway 1 0 Eric McKenna (b)
B Hemmingway 1 0 Robert Shaw
C Deery 0 1 Jo Woollard
D Evans 1/2 1/2 Gordon Shaw

Sasca won the toss, and chose white on odds.

Jo exchanged a bishop and knight early, then castled kingside while her opponent castled queenside. She made good use of her rooks, squeezing her opponent until he resigned.

Robert got his queen trapped in the midgame, trading it for a knight and bishop. He played on for a while, looking for tactical resources, but when he was reduced to rook and pawns against queen and pawns, he resigned,

Gordon’s opponent captured his rook on a1 fairly early, leaving him down on material and under strong pressure, but during the following exchanges Gordon gained three pawns,  and pinned his opponents rook against their queen, winning a rook for a bishop, thus restoring approximate material parity. After some manoeuvring, a draw was agreed.

Eric was the last to finish. Early on, he castled kingside, getting a solid position with decent development, then won a bishop for a pawn, giving him a clear material advantage.  By move 22,  he was also comfortably ahead on time, with 15 minutes left on the clock to his opponents five.

However, this small advantage proved insufficient. After much manoeuvring,  Eric resigned, faced with decisive material loss and probable mate.

 

 

Nomads D vs Ravenfield Bishops

Ravenfield Bishops 1.5 4.5 Nomads D
David Tate (b) 0 1 Keith Wicks
Rob Beevers 0 1 Eric McKenna
David Hill 1 0 Dave Kesteven
Steve Eyre 0.5 0.5 Robert Shaw
Martin Wilkes 0 1 Jo Woollard
Graham Peacock 0 1 Gordon Shaw

Jo won the toss.

Robert pinned Steve’s knight against his queen, trying to set up a pin on the queen itself, but when the exchanges were resolved both players were left with a rook and four pawns., so a draw was soon agreed.

After some early exchanges, Gordon gained a queen, then traded his queen for a mate.

Dave and David both castled king-side, swapping off minor pieces. Dave  generated promising mating threats, but David manoeuvred through them to mate him.

Eric went a bishop up early on, trading off both knights for a clear material advantage.  After some manoeuvring,  he mated Robert’s exposed king  with his queen, supported by a distant bishop.

Keith swapped down to queen, rook and 7 pawns against a queen, rook and just five pawns, then forced promotion. Once he had two queens, mate quickly followed.

Jo and Martin both castled king-side.  Jo established a strong defensive position, then won both rooks, gaining a pawn in the process.  Once the minor pieces were swapped off, she advanced a pawn to the sixth rank, forced a queen exchange, then promoted, leaving her with a queen, two rooks, and six pawns against just three pawns. There was still a chance of stalemate traps, but Jo avoided those and forced mate.

 

 

Nomads D vs Woodseats B

Nomads D 1 4 Woodseats B
Keith Wicks 0 1 Steve Moon (b)
Eric McKenna 1/2 1/2 Dave Cook
Robert Shaw 1/2 1/2 Brendan Ashmore
Jo Woollard 0 1 Martyn Edwards
Ashley Rogers 0 1 Michael Mullin

Robert was the first to finish. Early on, he traded a knight and bishop for a rook and two pawns, which is theoretically a material advantage but leaves less scope for manoeuvre.  He tried to build an attack, but could not see a clear way to break through, so played for a draw.

Eric and Dave both castled kingside, swapping off minor pieces. Eric came under pressure on g7, but defended strongly, deadlocking the position.

Keith’s midgame pawn structure looked pretty open, with his king exposed on g3.  Soon, he was left with rook, knight, and three pawns against a rook, five pawns, and a bishop. He traded his knight for a bishop and pawn, then won a pawn with a rook fork, leaving a rook and three pawns against a rook and four pawns. After much manoeuvring, Steve forced promotion, winning the game.

Ashley, our newest player, put up a spirited fight, but eventually lost. Afterwards, he said his first competitive match had been fun.

Jo and her opponent both castled kingside, then swapped off bishop and knight. After further exchanges, Jo ended up with a rook, knight and four pawns against a rook, knight and six pawns, and short on time. She defended well, but the material disadvantage eventually proved insurmountable.

 

 

 

Nomads E vs Rotherham B

Nomads E 1 3 Rotherham B
Simon Nicholson 0 1 Chris Willey (b)
Eric McKenna 1 0 Default
Dave Kesteven 0 1 Philip Sharpe
Robert Shaw 0 1 Michael Snowdon

Rotherham defaulted on board two, due to a family emergency.

Dave and Philip both castled king-side, swapping off minor pieces, then Philip doubled his rooks on the d file, generating a strong attack.  After losing significant material, Dave resigned.

Simon played an obscure variant of the Caro-Kann  defence. Early on, he forced Chris to retreat his knight back to g8, but Chris soon recovered. Just as the game was starting to look like a draw, Simon’s flag fell, before move 30.

Robert gained a rook early on with a knight fork, but eventually blundered it away, leaving him with a lone knight against three pawns. While he was struggling to find a way to prevent promotion, his flag too fell.

Barnsley D vs Nomads E

Barnsley D Nomads E
Anthony Steel 1/2 1/2 Eric McKenna (b)
Russell Roe 1 0 Robert Shaw
Max Littlewood 0 1 Dave Kesteven
Alan Taylor 1 0 Jo Woollard

Robert sacrificed a knight for positional advantage, leaving  Russell with doubled e & g pawns, and an exposed king, but fumbled while attempting to exploit this, losing a rook to a skewer, after which he resigned.

Dave attacked strongly with his queen early on, gaining a rook, then swapped down, emerging into the end game with queen, rook and five pawns against just a rook and fice pawns. Dave then forced a queen exchange. Faced with inevitable promotion Max resigned.

After swapping off minor pieces Jo and Alan both castled king-side. Further exchanges left Jo with a queen, rook, and pawns against a queen, rook, knight and pawns, a slight disadvantage which proved decisive.

Eric was the last to finish. He too had opened by swapping off minor pieces and castling king-side, but he maintained material parity, manoeuvring  to a rook and pawn endgame, with a one pawn advantage. After exchanging rooks, Eric marched his h pawn to promotion, but Anthony also had an unstoppable pawn, so Eric agreed a draw.

Ecclesall E vs Nomads E

Ecclesall E Nomads E
Mike Howarth 1/2 1/2 Eric McKenna (w)
Elliot Spencer 0 1 Peter Morton
John Speck 1 0 Dave Kesteven
Ken Scott 1 0 Robert Shaw
Peter Mitchell 0 1 Jo Woollard

Nomads won the toss, and chose white on odds.

Dave soon went a knight down. He lured Speck’s king to f7, where it looked pretty vulnerable, but this didn’t prove to be enough. Robert  also lost a piece early on, following a miscalculation in a promising position. He was able to generate some pressure with promotion threat on the a file, but eventually resigned.

Eric maintained material parity throughout his game, both players ending up with six pawns, a knight, and a bishop, on opposite colours. Once it was clear neither player could break through, a draw was agreed.

Peter and Elliot swapped off queens early, then Peter lost the exchange, going a knight for a rook down. He did have an extra pawn in compensation, but three of how pawns were trebled on the e file. However, Peter eventually recovered material in a tangled position, and then his opponents flag fell, before move 30.

Jo and Peter both castled kingside, with an open pawn structure on the queenside. After swapping bishops off, Jo went an exchange up: queen, two rooks and six pawns against queen, rook, knight, and six pawns. She tehn pressed this slight advantage home, until Peter resigned.

 

Sasca E vs Nomads E

Sasca E 1/2 Nomads E
D Evans (w) 1/2 1/2 Eric McKenna
C Wilson 0 1 Robert Shaw
O Walker 0 1 Jo Woollard
N Roberts 0 1 Gordon Shaw

Sasca won the toss, and chose white on odds.

Eric’s opponent opened with a strong attack, but Eric mounted a solid defence, eventually swapping down to a queen, rook and pawn endgame, with a  one pawn advantage for Eric. He tried to press this home, but his opponent manoeuvred him into perpetual check.

Playing against the French defence, Gordon quickly gained a pawn.  After his opponent retreated his bishop to e7, they both castled kingside, then Gordon swapped a bishop and knight for two bishops, giving him the slight theoretical advantage of the bishop pair. Exploiting this, he squeezed his opponent, swapping off queens on move 19 and.ending up with a rook and two pawns against just three pawns. This was enough to force promotion, after which mate swiftly followed.

Jo also opened with an exchange of minor pieces. Further exchanges followed, with Jo steadily gaining positional advantage, until her opponent was mated.

Robert was the last to finish. He and his opponent had exchanged queens on move 19. leaving Robert a pawn down, but with a stronger pawn structure. The next exchanges left Robert with a knight for four pawns, a marginal disadvantage, but after a wobbly middle-game he pulled back, gaining material, so towards the end of the game Robert had a  rook, knight and pawn against just a rook.  Once his opponent’s rook was disposed of, mate soon followed.

Robert’s mate:

Clay Cross vs Nomads E

Clay Cross 3 1 Nomads E
Jerome Redhead 1 0 Duncan Chambers (w)
Neil Cameron 1/2 1/2 Eric McKenna
Keith Myhill 1 0 Robert Shaw
Brian Redhead 1/2 1/2 Jo Woollard

Nomads won the toss, and chose white on odds.

Robert miscalculated an early exchange, trading a bishop for two pawns. He was able to generate a promotion threat with his kingside pawn majority, getting one pawn to the seventh rank, but Keith eventually blocked him. Once it was clear he could force promotion, Robert resigned.

Eric castled first in a solid defensive opening, exchanging first minor pieces then queens. When the dust settled Eric and his opponent had two knights and seven pawns each. Once it was clear neither player could make progress a draw was agreed.

After swapping off bishops Duncan positioned his queen threateningly on g6, then exchanged knights. More exchanges followed, leaving Duncan two pawns down with a single rook, bishop, and queen, then Jerome outmanoeuvred Duncan, winning his bishop outright. Facing a clear material disadvantage, Duncan resigned.

Against Jo, Brian opened aggressively, his queen penetrating to a4, but Jo repulsed this attack., going two pawns up. Going into the endgame, she had a rook and six pawns, including connected passed pawns on g6 and f7, against a rook, bishop and just two pawns. After some manoeuvring, Jo won the bishop with a promotion threat, leaving her with a rook and five pawns against a rook and a single pawn, but she was running short on time.

With just  50 seconds left on the clock, Jo succumbed to a stalemate trap, and the match was over.

Considering we were outgraded on every board, this was a respectable result.