|Posted on September 15, 2015 at 5:55 AM|
A remarkable match at Rushall, saw the Brewood team get through to the semi finals of the Humphrey's Trophy despite being a player short for the match and being outgraded on every board. The full details of a night of drama follow, but first to be boring here is the match card:
Board 1: Alexander Jarvis (127) 0-1 Mike Jarocki (122)
Board 2: Keith Butler (117) 0-1 David Blower (105)
Board 3: David Jarvis (115) 1-0 Peter Crozet (96)
Board 4: Shane Cooksey (114) 1-0 Default
Total: Rushall 2-2 Brewood
Board Count Tiebreaker: Rushall 7-3 Brewood
Brewood through to semi finals by having the lower board count.
Mike Jarocki and I arrived at the home of the Pics [Rushall Olympic Football Club, where Rushall Chess Club is based] half an hour before the chess match was about to start. The journey there had being pleasent with very little traffic. Having left early because of the early 7:15pm start at Rushall, we arrived so early we decided to chat in the car to each other for a little bit.
Soon afterwards Peter Crozet pulled up, comfortably still before 7:00pm. Mike Jarocki and I noticed Peter was on his own. John Fenby was not in the car.
David Blower: "Perhaps John is driving here himself." However, Peter explained that John was ill, and therefore would not be coming, there was only 3 of us. Peter did try and phone up various members of the club to ask if they could fill in for John, so that we could have a full quota of players, but with such a last minute replacement needed, it proved impossible to arrange.
Clearly we did not set out to travel to Rushall with only three players, and until I was on the car park at Rushall, I was unaware we would only have three players.
Brewood would like to apologize to Rushall and to Shane Cooksey because we do not usually default boards, and never default any matches. I know that any player who plays chess, would rather play, than win by default. However they were understanding that sometimes these things happen at the last minute, and there was nothing anyone could really do about it.
Obviously we hope that John Fenby gets better soon as well.
To the match itself, and apart from being mildly disappointed we had not provided a full set of players for Rushall, it now made the match more difficult as we were already 1-0 down. Added to the fact that we then saw the Rushall team sheet and realised that we were outgraded on every board.
In the Humphrey's Trophy teams toss for colour to decide who is white on the odd boards. "Tails," I [David Blower] called out having being made the stand in captain for the night. It was heads. This meant that Rushall were automatically white on the odd boards.
David Blower: "Oh well, at least I get to be white on board 2," said to a bit of laugther from those nearby.
The clocks at Rushall are started at 7:15pm prompt because Rushall have to be cleared up and out by a strict deadline of 10:30pm. Therefore they have no option but to start the clocks at 7:15pm. Strangly enough despite there being only three Brewood players present, no Rushall players were present, although they did arrive shortly afterwards and it did not affect the match.
Here are the detailed technical chess board match reports for the boards 1-3 that did take place, board by board, starting with the top board:
Alexander Jarvis 0-1 Mike Jarocki. Mike Jarocki was the last to finish his match, so he knew he had to win to send Brewood through to the semi finals. If he had drew, Rushall would have gone through to the semi finals. The opening in this game was B90: Sicilian Defence: Najdorf Variation, English Attack.
Mike Jarocki commented: "I knew this opening. It was a classic Sicilian Defence situation, my opponent had a good kingside attack going on, I went for a counter attack on the queenside, and also counter attacked in the centre which was important. Eventually my opponents attack came to nothing, and I went a piece up, which became two pieces up at the very end."
Mike Jarocki has had his fair shair of disappointments at Rushall over the years so also commented: "I am pleased to win here, because I had never done so before." It proved to be a win that would eventually take Brewood into the semi finals of the competition.
Keith Butler 0-1 David Blower. I was the first player to finish and it is fair to say that I was really pleased with my own victory. The opening in this match was: B30: Sicilian Defence: Old Sicilian. The game started off with my central d and e pawns, being exchanged off for Keith's original b and c pawns, meaning after 12 moves he had pawns on d5 and e5.
My pair of bishops initially were defensive pieces, to stop the central pawn attack. Meanwhile I had castled, and had moved the rook to a central area of the board. Keith moved his pawns to attack but he had no pieces to help them, and he still had an uncastled king, meaning one of the pawns was pinned. Eventually my pair of bishops could be moved to form the basis of my attack.
The same principles that are used in the two bishops and king v lone king checkmate were in evidence here, as both the bishops controlled important adjacent diagonals from long range. Combined with the fact that I had also used my queen and rook to attack Keith's still uncastled queen meant that by move 21 the loss of Keith's queen was forced, and he resigned immediately.
David Blower: "That has being the best I have played all season," said to some laugther with Mike Jarocki, as that statement was quite obvious.
David Blower gave this further reaction as Mike Jarocki was giving him a lift home: "I think remaining patient during his pawn attack was the key." Quiet moves like castling and Re1 to get the rook into a central position, which did not have any obvious tactical benefits for me at the time I did the moves were important in this win. To say I was pleased would be an understatement.
David Jarvis 1-0 Peter Crozet. There was not much in this game and the game was only decided at the end.
Peter Crozet commented: "I offered a draw, but perhaps on reflection I should have offered a draw a bit earlier." After I had finished my game first, I walked back into the chess match room at Rushall, to check on the progress of the two remaining games.
Both Peter and David had 5 pawns and their own king each with no other pieces on the board. However all of Peter's own pawns could not be moved, either because they were blocked, or because they were backward pawns, meaning Peter would lose any pawn, if he moved it. The deciding factor was that David had a protected passed pawn.
David's protected passed pawn really killed Peter off, as Peter had to use his king, to stop the protected passed pawn, meaning David had free reign to put his king where he wanted on the board. He got the opposition on Peter and eventually started munching up Peter's other pawns, thereby gaining a queen.
It had not being easy for David, but better king placement and pawn structure in the endgame had decided the match.
With all three matches finishing relatively quickly we had left by 9:30pm. We await with interest the draw for the semi finals. I guess one extra fixture to add into the season, will not be a problem, particularly as it has come from our success in this match. This season could not have got off to a better start. Fixture congestion because of a semi final. Yes please!