Clay Cross Chess Club

Newsletter 31st August 2016

Thanks to Phil for the idea of a pre-season friendly match with his main club, Ashfield. We duly met at Bateman's Mill on Wed, 31st August and had a truly friendly and enjoyable match. I discovered I was sitting opposite 4 players whom I had known for a combination of about 150 years! :

31st August 2016
Friendly Match
     ECF Clay Cross CC     2     3   Ashfield CC  ECF    
135 Neil Cameron
W ½
Phil Morgan

124 Kieran Redhead
W 1 0 Stan Cranmer

124 Brian Lever
W ½ ½ Janos Wagenbach

95 Frank Pearson
W 0 1 Trevor Lewis

5    YCA 83 Dudley Thorpe
W 0 1 George Heath

Phil and I met as young(ish) teachers at Shirebrook School c1977; I remember playing Janos at a Nottingham Congress soon after that; Trevor reminded me that he played in the May-day congresses our club organised at the Winding Wheel circa Miners' Strike days; and I'm sure George came to Clay Cross CC for a brief period around the same time.    
Although Phil had planned to bring a team to "match" our grades he had to replace an originally-selected player with Stan Cranmer, strengthening Ashfield to the extent that CX were outgraded on every board, by an average of 10 points. In the absence of an available coin he very slightly redressed the discrepancy by conceding the white pieces on 3 of the 5 boards!
Given the difference in nominal strength Clay X did extremely well. Dudley and Frank had very good games, only overpowered late on after many moves.
Phil conceded that Neil had outplayed him and "should have" won easily with an extra pawn and superior structure. Kieran played an excellent tactical game to win in the dying minutes.
When I had made about 10 moves in 30 or more minutes, Janos had used only about 2 minutes of his time! After the game he told me to look on the internet for his very own "Wagenbach Defence" to the King's Gambit. Indeed it is referred to in many places, Wikipedia included.
This example is particularly interesting for me: Ruggeri Laderchi G. (2534) v Janos Wagenbach , including the comment "White has to know what he/she is doing - in particular, some of White's best lines against it involve sacrificing a piece for two pawns, and White has to time the sacrifice accurately".

How White is supposed to know what he is doing against such a rare (rare? Neil had of course heard of it!) response like this is an interesting question, but I certainly thought it necessary to pursue the spirit of the opening by sacrificing as suggested. 
Phil's report on the Ashfield CC web site.

The Board 3 game
Remember - clicking e7 lets you see the game from Black's point of view.
(You can run the variations by clicking in them in the text, and
you can scroll down to hidden text with your mouse wheel.)

Community Web Kit provided free by BT