|Posted on March 29, 2017 at 10:35 PM|
Apologies for the awful headline. The Brewood A team played away against Rugeley in their penultimate match of the season in the Wolverhampton Chess League 2016-2017 Division 2 season on Tuesday 28th March 2017. The match report follows but first here is the match card:
Board 1: William Hulley (150) ½ - ½ Derek Laight (155)
Board 2: Matthew Carr 128 0-1 Mark Keady (142)
Board 3: Patrick Waller (125) ½ - ½ Paul Wright (143)
Board 4: Robert Fell (131) 1-0 Mike Jarocki (132)
Board 5: Catherine Hiley 128 1-0 Roger Grainger (129)
Board 6: Robert J Edgar (120) 1-0 Andrew Lenz (123)
Total: Rugeley 4-2 Brewood A
With the strongest side available to us we came into the match knowing that a win for us against Rugeley would lift us out of the relegation zone and put Lichfield C into it. Rugeley knew they needed a draw to be mathematically safe from relegation. There would have also been various possibilities of different playoff combinations as well had we got the result we wanted.
We came out of the match knowing two things for certain 1) Rugeley would stay up, and 2) there will not be any need for a relegation playoff this season to decide relegation in the Wolverhampton Chess League Division 2 because despite out grading Rugeley on every single board Rugeley won to ensure that they will stay up in division 2. Congratulations to them.
The Brewood A team captain Roger Grainger gave this reaction: "Cannot believe it. We have lost. Derek Laight and Paul Wright drew on boards one and three; Mark Keady was still playing on board two (maybe drawn.) [Mark Keady eventually won.] But myself, Mike Jarocki and Andy Lenz all three of us - lost! I am still in shock!"
This now means that the final match of the season next week on Tuesday 4th April 2017 at home against Lichfield C is a winner-takes-all match. Effectively the final match of the league season will be a virtual playoff match.
We had known for a long time that the match could end up being important but now it really is vital that we win. Draw or lose we get relegated, win and we stay up and our opponents Lichfield C will be relegated. Despite the disappointment against Rugeley both the Brewood A team captain Roger Grainger and club chairman David Blower believe that we can get the win we need.
Looking ahead to the Lichfield C match next week Roger Grainger thought it was a match that the team would be capable of winning as we would likely out grade Lichfield C: "Therefore we must now beat Lichfield C on Tuesday. We should beat them on grading... Onto Tuesday."
Club chairman David Blower decided not to dwell on the Rugeley defeat but instead gave this reaction ahead of the Lichfield C match next week. "At least we have one final chance in a winner-takes-all match. And we owe Lichfield one. I have a sneaky feeling we have got one performance left in us to get that win we need and it will come when we most need it next week against Lichfield C."
The tension will be high next week but everyone at the club still feels that the team is capable of staying up so we will just have to prove it next week.