There have been 3 further matches this week since the Wirral match. Wednesday night saw another busy night at The Mals Club with the E team hosting Cheddleton F and our own “F” team at home to Newcastle F. A separate report from captain Nigel Gardner covers both of these matches. For the E team it was a win by 3.5-0.5 to add to their narrow lead at the top of the table. However nearest competitors Cheddleton H have closed the gap with a 4-0 default win tonight to go level on match points and trail our E team by just one half of a board point. What a finish to the season we have here.
Thursday night saw a weakened “A” team make the short trip to Holmes Chapel Rooks. Lady luck was much on our side as we managed a 3-2 win to take us 2 pts clear at the top of the division 2 table, with a board count 4 greater than 2nd placed Macclesfield who have one match left against 3rd placed Cheddleton B. The outcome of that match will determine the division 2 champions.
The Rooks started the match well with a superb win by junior Ellen Scattergood on board 4 with a crushing King side attack, before the score was levelled thanks to a default. Amy Lovatt always seemed in control on board 2 after an early pawn fork won a minor piece for a pawn. Amy duly made the score 2-1 with the two remaining boards looking good for us with a one pawn advantage on top board and an exchange advantage on bd 3. The Rooks although massively outgraded fought to the end as Colin Mills on board 1 held Karl Lockett to a draw. In the meantime captain David Hulme had blown his advantage against Paul Clifford (with over 50 grading points) and was staring down the barrel at defeat. A hopeful offer of a draw, with Paul down to under 2 minutes on the clock, was gleefully accepted and allowed David to escape with a draw and scrape a 3-2 win for the team.
To add to the Board Count Matters headline, the C team go to Newcastle this week in the knowledge they need to win 4-0 to share the division 3 title with our own B team. The odds on the C team winning at all are no more than 50%, and the odds of a 4-0 win are extremely remote.