|Posted on March 5, 2013 at 6:00 PM|
A full report on the impressive victory against Halesowen B that gives us a chance of staying up follows below but first here is the matchcard:
Board 1: Jon A Asbury (130) ½ - ½ Paul Guest (104)
Board 2: Peter S Banks (125) 1-0 Stephen Micklewright (103)
Board 3: Windsor WA Peck (122) 0-1 David Buckley (100)
Board 4: Paul J Evans (122) 0-1 Andrew Davies (99)
Board 5: Richard Woolley (121) ½ - ½ David Blower (95)
Just when it looked as though the Brewood B team this season were down and out, along they came with an unexpected victory at Halesowen B to keep them in with a chance of staying up this season.
It was an impressive victory not only because it keeps us in contention to stay in the Wolverhampton Chess League division 3 this season, but also because the team were heavily outgraded, on every board. Infact Halesowen B's bottom board outgraded Brewood B's top board, and every player from Brewood B was outgraded by at least 20 points.
It must be disappointing for Halesowen B. Having beaten the Brewood A team and got back into the promotion race, they have then lost their next 2 matches against relegation candidates Walsall Kipping B and Brewood B, leaving them with the possibility of going down with 1 match to play. In truth they should get at least 1 board point against Rushall C in their final match of the season though.
In the car on the way up it was decided that the Brewood B team would go strictly in grade order according to the January 2013 ECF Grading lists. In truth with only 9 points between all 5 of us going to Halesowen B it really wouldn't make much difference which one of the players was on which board. What would be more important was how each player played on the night anyway.
Board 1 was Jon Asbury ½ - ½ Paul Guest. Paul Guest on the top board faced an opponent graded 26 points higher than him. This was the last match to finish, the score at the time was Halesowen B 1½ - 2½ Brewood B. This meant that Paul had to get at least a draw, otherwise if he had lost, the game would have been drawn, and the club would have been relegated. No pressure than Paul!
I don't know if he was directly told this by anyone at the game, but with the background chatter between the other 4 of us he must have been aware of this. As usual the other players gathered round to watch the last match finish. Under pressure Paul played quite sensibly and a draw was agreed.
Board 2 was Peter Banks 1-0 Stephen Micklewright. This game in terms of grading between the players had only 22 points between them! It also produced Brewood B's only defeat of the night. This was the 4th match to finish putting the pressure onto Paul Guest on the top board. A close game had being decided by one error from Stephen Micklewright.
Reaction from Stephen Micklewright: "I blundered my rook. In the endgame I decided to make use of my king, but in doing so just moved it completely to the wrong square. This allowed a discovered check and then my rook was gone. As soon as I moved the king I said: "Oh no" but my opponent would have found the move even without me saying "oh no." He was never going to miss that."
Board 3 was Windsor Peck 0-1 David Buckley. 22 points were between the players on this one, but David Buckley produced an upset. This was the 3rd match to finish for us to go 2½ - ½ up. David Buckley's reaction after the game: "My opponent resigned and we shook hands. We then played the moves out after the game had finished of what we were thinking, and it turns out he would have won!"
Board 4 was Paul Evans 0-1 Andrew Davies. There were 23 points between the players on this board, but Andrew took advantage of a blunder by his opponent who didn't notice his rook was hanging and gave it away. Andrew took the rook immediately and then managed to get an easy victory with his advantage from it. "We've all done it," said Andrew after the match. This was the first match to finish.
Board 5 was Richard Woolley ½ - ½ David Blower. This board had 26 points between the players, at least I didn't find this out until after the match. With David having white the opening was B30: Sicilian Defense: Old Sicilian. It turned out to be a very slow game.
Early on I thought Richard made a mistake so that I could win Richard's central d pawn, after a series of exchanges. It turned out I couldn't and I realised this during the series of exchanges. Still equal on material but a lot of pieces had been exchanged, and it didn't do much for myself. Infact some Halesowen players I spoke to after the game suggested Richard had an advantage.
It was a knight v bishop game, with myself having the knight. Richard had a dark squared bishop. Richard then moved his pawns onto dark squares. If ever there is a google image of "bad bishop" it is probably the final position in which both of us agreed a draw.
As it was it was easy enough to get all of my pawns onto white squares, and then to maneuver the knight onto a white square, defended by pawns also on white squares. In short no way through for Richard.
With both players either unwilling or unable to make progress for the risk of losing material a draw was agreed after only 24 moves each. Whilst agreeing a draw after so few moves is unusual, there was an attempt from both players to win the match. Andrew Davies having already finished his match watched us replay and discuss the match with each other, and also agreed that this was a fair draw.
So overall a good result for the Brewood B team especially as we were heavily outgraded on every board. It also moves us up into 5th place in the league above both Halesowen B and Walsall Kipping B. Brewood B have a final record of Played 10, Won 2, Drew 3, Lost 5, Points 7, Board Count 22. That isn't a bad record to be honest.
Halesowen B and Walsall Kipping B now both have one game left. They are both level on points with us on 7 points each but Halesowen B already have a board count of 21½. Even a 4-1 defeat at Rushall C will be enough to keep them up.
However the pressure is now on Walsall Kipping B. They also have 7 points but have a board count of only 16½. They now need a draw against Wolverhampton B to stay up. If they do lose, Brewood B will stay up. The match between Walsall Kipping B and Wolverhampton B is at Wolverhampton Chess Club on Thursday 14th March.
This website will be updated with the result once its known, to confirm what league the Brewood B team will be in next season. At least we won this match to put the pressure on Walsall Kipping B.