Gritty and determined - Update 19 January

Update (19 January) - Uckfield 1 have now conceded Board 1 securing a win for Matthew and a drawn match for us....

.... So a cold, wet and dark Wednesday evening saw the Horsham 5 tour bus arrive in Uckfield for our first MSL game in Division 3 following the Christmas break. We were confident and determined to bounce back from our defeat at the hands of Eastbourne at the beginning of December. We were also quite relaxed - well I was anyway which I put down to the ongoing effects of jet lag having just flown back from Australia a few days earlier.

Unfortunately we didn't have the best start as we unexpectedly had to default on Board 5 because of a non-show (no names, no pack drill!!). Things looked even more bleak when Brian (Howard) succumbed on Board 4 about 90 minutes in. Richard (Barrowclough) on Board 2 was involved in a very tight and tense game illustrated by the occasional sighs and groans emanating from both players! Nevertheless, through his usual grit and determination Richard secured a drawn ending when although he had a knight and 2 pawns (on the 6th rank) his opponent's rook was able to continually check his king. Which left Matthew and I on Board's 1 and 3 respectively.

My game was a wacky QGD transposing into a Dutch when completely against character I went for the jugular in a drawn but dynamic position allowing me to get my f and h pawns on the 6th rank and trapping my opponent's bishop on h8 - so much so that on move 51 he resigned as he couldn't stop one of them queening. I need to be jet lagged more often!

So it was now down to the traditional cliffhanger from Matthew (playing Toby Harris) on Board 1. The game has been adjourned at the moment in a complex middle game position with all the major pieces still on. However Matthew has an extra bishop and it looks to me he has forced win (indeed perhaps a forced mate). So fingers crossed it appears we may have secured a hard fought draw in the match.

Thank to Brian, Richard and Matthew for turning out on such a horrible night.

Next victim East Grinstead at home on 3 February.



Anthony Higgs's picture

A draw would be an excellent result considering the distance travelled and board defaulted - well done all.