Monday our F team played against Meir B.
Les was the first to fall in super quick time and was checkmated in only 16 moves!
Board 3 was next to fall, then Captain Dave P secured our teams first win of the night. All eyes on board 2 Simon, the game could have easily fallen in favour of Meir but Simon fought on and his win meant a 2-2 draw.
Wednesday was another busy night at the mal’s with the B team playing against Kidsgrove and our C team against Fenton C. It was great results for both teams the B team had a convincing win 3-1. The C team went one better and won 4-0
For those of you waiting for the January grades they are now out
Well done to all the players who’s grades have improved
Rick Renegade now has an official ECF grade of 135 and Philip Wright ECF grade of 69
Especially well done to our young players
Amy has jumped from 83 – 118
Harry Gardiner moved from 31-76
See player list for all grade changes.
There were 3 matches to report on for last week, with the B team travelling to play Fenton B on Monday, the “A” team hosting Holmes Chapel Rooks and a division 4 derby between our C & D teams.
Martin Gill’s B team was missing his top two regulars at Fenton, so was pleased to come away from Fenton with a share of the match. Doug Barnett and Martin picked up draws on boards 2 & 3 as Chris Rhodes superb run continued with another win to extend his record to 14 unbeaten matches in the NSDCA this season. The B team lead division 3 by the slender margin of 1 pt and face Kidsgrove this coming week.
The “A” team had quite a big grading advantage over the Rooks and were favourites to win. Wins came for David Hulme and Karl Lockett with a draw for Olawale Titiloye. The highlight for the team was giving an A-team debut to promising youngster Amy Lovatt. Although Amy was slightly outgraded she played with great maturity to win her game when lesser players might have grabbed the material on offer she managed to deliver a mating attack. This win leaves the team 3rd in the table but some way behind the top two.
The D team managed to overturn the C team thanks to wins from Neville Layhe and Dylan Sayers with a draw for Martin Gill. The C team’s only winner was junior Harry Gardiner again beating an opponent graded over 50 pts higher. Dylan’s win keeps up his 100% record for the season so far, despite his limited opportunity to play matches. The D team face Cheddleton F in their next match, where a win would put the team in the title mix.
Wednesday night saw another two matches at the AMAL, with the “A” team taking on Cheddleton C in division 2, and top of division 5 “E” team hosting Meir B.
The “E” team were hot favourites to keep up their 100% record and duly did the business. Junior Amy Lovatt continued her perfect record for the team and set the wheels in motion with a win on bd 2 before Steve Ballantyne made it 2-0 to retain his unbeaten record. Chris Rhodes then followed in Steve’s shoes to make it 3-0 before skipper Nigel Gardner earned a draw. All four players are currently unbeaten for the “E” team this season who have a healthy 5 point lead at the top of the table. They have a crucial run of three matches in 8 days starting on 31st January against their title contenders.
The “A” team returned to winning ways as Rick Renegade, David Hulme and Karl Lockett all gained victories as Ola Titiloye did all the hard work on top board holding out for a draw against his 178 grade opponent. The team is fighting to stay in the top half of the division 2 table with a record of 8pts from 7 matches.
Friday night saw our C team travel to take on Cheddleton F in a division 4 match with the opposition holding a 100% record. Amy Lovatt completed another win to give us hope of toppling the league leaders, but the team narrowly failed by 2.5-1.5 as only Dave Price could add to our score with a draw.
Next week should see another full house at the AMAL with the “A” team hosting Holmes Chapel Rooks and the C team playing the D in a division 4 derby where hopefully there will be some extra games played for grading purposes.
The new year started with two matches at the AMAL last night. In division 2 the “A” team hosted league leaders Cheddleton “B”, while the “E” and “F” teams fought out a division 5 derby.
The top of the table “E” team were out-graded on paper due to the vagaries of estimated grades and F-grades employed under league rules and were set for a tough challenge. The first game to finish was the junior battle on board 4 where Harry Gardiner comfortably defeated his opponent to put the “E” team in the lead. Next to finish was the E’s other junior as Amy Lovatt won the bd 2 game against Les Hall. Amy kept up her 100% record for the team and has now scored 10/12 in all games since the South Cheshire Shield started. Both Harry and Amy are improving rapidly and it is expected both players grades should jump when the new grades are released around the end of January. The remaining games were close affairs before Chris Rhodes capitalised on errors in the bd 1 game to make it 3-0. The final game to finish saw Phil Wright hold Nigel Gardner to a draw. This result leaves the E team four points clear at the top of the table (with a maximum 12 pts from 6 matches), although lower down Meir C are the closest challengers (with 5 pts from just 4 matches). The “E” team are at home to Meir B next week.
The “A” team put up a good fight against runaway leaders Cheddleton B, with David Hulme (bd 4) and Rick Renegade (bd 5) winning, while there were losses incurred on boards 1 and 3 to leave the match delicately poised at 2-2 with Karl Lockett playing Bill Armstrong on bd 2. These two have met a number of times in the last couple of seasons and usually their games “go the distance” and last night was no exception. This was a hum-dinger of a game as advantage went too and fro with both players deep into increment time. One moment it looked like Karl had the upper hand with approx 5 minutes left against Bill’s 2 minutes around the 40 move mark. As the players thrashed out a further 30 moves or so Bill’s experience allowed him to gain a secure winning advantage to leave Karl forced into resignation. So for the second consecutive match, Cheddleton B beat Crewe A to effectively eliminate the “A” team from the title race. The “A” team are at home to Cheddleton C next week.