Horsham 5

Articles relating to the Horsham fifth team.

Out-classed, But Not Humiliated

Horsham 5 came up against East Grinstead 1 last night. We were out-graded by an average of 17 points across boards 1 - 4, whilst their 5th board player was on his first MSCL outing after a long absence from competitive chess. He was last graded 167 in 2000. It could be argued he should have been higher up the playing order, but I recognise East Grinstead would have had little evidence on which to judge his current strength and will no doubt take account of his first few results.

A Poor Night for Horsham 5

Unfortunately, Horsham 5 only fielded 3 players against Hastings & St Leonards 4 on Tuesday. We were caught out by an ineligibility that had been overlooked - not something that was expected to catch us out this early in the season, but between agreeing to play and the actual event Roger notched up a 4th match for higher teams. The other default was an unexplained no-show. I succumbed quite quickly on board 1, putting the match beyond contention, but Richard Barrowclough and Peter Helliwell both drew, ensuring at least some honour for the team.

Horsham 5 Victorious

Horsham 4 were humbled last night in the opening MSL match of the season against Horsham 5. The match had been brought forward by one week to assist Horsham 4 with player availability!

First blood went to a joyful Oliver, defeating the 4th team captain. I managed to make it 2 up for the 5th team with a victory over John Marshall. Mick Harris restored some standing for the 4th team, but with Richard B beating Richard M, the victory was assured. Finally, with only personal honour at stake, Nick managed to make the bottom line look not too bad for the "stronger" team.

“Sometimes I lie awake at night …

and I ask, “Where did I go wrong?” Then a voice says to me, 'This is going to take more than one night.”

Last Tuesday saw Horsham 5 put a tentative toe into the shark-infested waters of MSL Division 3 to play our first game of the season against the early leaders Uckfield 1.

Our squad, although relatively small this season (in number not height), looks potent as we have been joined by the “2 Johns” (Marshall and Cannon) and our grade spread is not particularly wide so we have strength in depth …well in theory we do!

Lies, Damn Lies and Statistics

Now that Horsham 5’s 2014/15 season has finished I thought it would be useful to provide a (light-hearted!?) end of term report in advance of Ian’s wider presentation to the AGM in September.


We played 7 matches of which we won 3, lost 3 and drew 1.


We used 10 players who played a total of 34 games (excluding 1 default). Of these we won 13, lost 11 (including 1 default) and drew 11 – giving us a win percentage of 37.14%.

If you are in a space ship…

…. travelling at the speed of light and you turn on the headlights, does anything happen?

It is amazing what things crowded into my mind during yesterday evening's 3 hour round trip to Hastings to play our last match in Division 3 this season against their fourth team.

“It's a dangerous business, Frodo …

…. going out of your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to”.

So the next stop on Horsham 5’s MSL Division 3 world tour… Haywards Heath on a very cold February night.

Matthew, on top board, having eaten three shredded wheat, decided to finish his game a little earlier than normal. He did - around 9:00pm – but with an identical result. A win for him and for us on top board. We were on our way.

A Captain’s innings …. Or was it!?

But more of that later…..

So yesterday evening (3 February) brought Horsham 5 “to the turn and heading for home” and to the first of our three remaining MSL fixtures in Division 3 - all of which must be completed by the end of the month. I can now see why Mourinho complains about fixture congestion at this time of the season.

So first up a home game against East Grinstead 1. Although strong opponents across all boards we were calm and focused, buoyed up by the fact that we had all (slightly) improved our grades in January.

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.


Earlier this week saw Horsham 5’s next sortie into the maelstrom know as MSL Division 3 – a home game against Worthing 3. On paper it was a very evenly matched contest. Could Horsham 5 bounce back from their close run defeat by Horsham 4 in their opening fixture?

First up was a crushing win by Brian on Board 4 so quick that he was able to get home to watch the second half of the Scotland v England football friendly! This was closely followed by a solid draw by Tony on Board 1.


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