A Mixed Bag

We’ve had another busy week, with two online League matches, three teams playing in the NSDCA and a few more internal games in our three Winter Competitions.

Tuesday night saw the final round (No 7) of the 4NCL online Season 4, with our A team playing Bradford Knights in division 3 and the B team playing Ashton in division 4. The AOL team concluded the campaign with a narrow 2.5-1.5 win against an experienced team, thanks to a draw on top board by David Lambton, and wins from captain David Hulme, and player of the season Simon Layhe. The team finished 5th in the group of 8, which is the AOL team’s highest ever finish in the 4NCL online league. The BOL team had a night to forget, with a rare blank. Thanks to a good start to the season they also finished 5th in their group, having been serious promotion contenders until the final two rounds.

Wednesday night was a busy night at The Mals again, as our A team hosted Alsager and the E team hosted the C team. The “A” team were too strong for Alsager and won comfortably 3.5-1.5 much in line with a big grade advantage on the lower boards. Skipper Martin Burns had a draw on top board, after earlier wins from Lee Tilton, Kobus Nienaber and Phil Wright.

The E  vs C clash was expected to be a tight match with slight grade advantage to the E team. However the C team managed to emerge as clear winners with a 4-1 scoreline due to successes by Karl Lockett, Doug Barnett, Dave Price and Pawel Stanny. The E team’s point was gained by George Bulbeck who was promoted from board 5 to 4, and is in a rich vain of form with seven successive wins in league and club competition.

The internal tournaments saw David Lambton join the lead with 4 pts in division 1, while Nigel Gardner extended his lead in division 2 with a draw to take him to 6/7, and stretch his run to an unbeaten 9 games this season including league and club competition.

Next week we have a 17-board Rapidplay challenge match at Northwich on Monday which promises to be great fun, while Wednesday’s club night is a match free zone so should be full of internal competition games.