Horsham 2's season so far

As the new captain of Horsham 2 I hadn't realised how to put a report on the website until recently so this is an update about how Horsham 2 have been getting on this season. Full results are available on the new League Management System: https://ecflms.org.uk/lms/node/45436/tfixtures

Our first match of the season was against Horsham 1 and as expected we lost to our own first team. For a full report please see James' excellent report at the beginning of the season.

Our second match of the season was against Hastings 2 a team we wanted to beat who would probably end up mid-table with us. Unfortunately we were missing 3 of our top players so this was always going to be a tough match. Phil had a nerveless draw on board 1 in a claustraphobic position. Peter was held to a draw on board 2 in a game that see-sawed both ways throughout. Ian's game on board 4 was equal out of the opening but his opponent played well to create a lot of pressure and bring home the point for them. Bob's game on board 5 was tense with opposite side castling but his opponent managed to navigate their way out of the attack and hold a draw in a worse endgame. This left my game on board 3 as the last game going with the team down by one. My opponent had outplayed me in the opening to create a strong centre and leave me hanging on. In mutual time trouble I fought back to get a winning position, only then to miss an under-promotion tactic that lost the game. This left Hastings 2 with a 3.5 - 1.5 win.

Our third match of the season was away to Worthing 1. Worthing 1 are one of the top teams so this was going to be a difficult match, and so it proved with Anthony, Matt, and Peter losing on the odd boards, and Phil and Lucy drawing on the even boards. Worthing 1 4-1 Horsham 2

Our fourth match of the season was home to Haywards Heath 1. They were another team who should end up mid-table so we were looking for our first win to get our season back on track. On board 1 Phil had a challenging game against Feliks who proved too strong for him. On boards 4 and 5 Lucy and Peter outclassed their lower rated opponents to win their games. Matt played a game that descended into tactical chaos which Matt managed to stay on top of to bring home the win. With the match already decided Dix on board 2 game had to go to adjournment in a tricky rook endgame and it was decided that Dix had found the right way to hold the draw. Horsham 2 3.5-1.5 Haywards Heath 1.

After the Christmas break our fifth match was against Lewes 1. Lewes are currently bottom of the table, but have deserved a bit more than they have achieved with more game points than the two teams above them. Our away match to them was a close call with Phil and Dix losing on the top boards but Matt, Lucy, and Peter winning on the bottom boards to narrowly bring home a win. Lewes 1 2-3 Horsham 2.

Our sixth match of the season was home to Hastings 1. Hastings 1 are one of the top teams in the league so this was going to be a rigorous challenge. On board 1 Phil was up against Bogdan who showed his pedigree with a quick win. On boards 3 and 4 Matt and Lucy held their higher rated opponents to draws. On board 5 Peter got beaten in an endgame. Again the team had lost but Dix was left playing. In a tricky endgame with a rook and queen each Dix carefully won a couple of pawns before his opponent’s desperate attack let Dix calmly checkmate him. Horsham 2 2-3 Hastings 1.

It was at this point in the season that Phil’s thought that 6 points should be enough to stay up came back to me. With 2 wins in the first 6 games by Phil’s reckoning we would need one more win to stay in division 1. Looking at the remaining fixture list I reckoned we would be able to get a win in one of our last 3 games and probably not the next game against Brighton 1, who are challenging to win the league. In the match Matt, Phil, Dix, and Nick Ashby all played superbly to hold their higher rated opponents to draws. This left Peter as acting captain still going on board 5, his opponent desperate to win for their team pushed too hard and Peter took advantage to bring home a win for himself and the team. Brighton 1 2-3 Horsham 2.


Anthony Higgs's picture

Thanks for the update Alex, and in particular a big well done for the result against Brighton 1 which is always a very tough fixture. Reminds me of the time Horsham 2 defeated Worthing 1 (also away) without conceding a board in 2009 - we have form in this regard!

Ian Comley's picture

Horsham 2 are doing very well in such a strong division The result against Worthing 1 was outstanding!