Lions edge thriller at Hackney!

Tuesday 12 March, 2013

In a tough away fixture at Hackney, the Hendon Lions consolidated their position at the top of Division 1 of the Middlesex League. After this 4.5-3.5 victory, the Lions now have 10.5/11 match points going into the biggest match of the season, against Kings Head 1 on Monday.

Hackney 1 Hackney 1 Hendon 1 Hendon 1
Ansell, Simon T
226 ½ - ½
Meszaros, Gyula
Walker, Nicholas P
207 0 - 1
Moskovic, David M
Adelaja, Abimbola
205 1 - 0
Poobalasingam, Peter S
Chin, Francis CW
192 0 - 1
Mures, Cristian
Shaw, Dashiell L
181 ½ - ½
Eden, Tomer
Jones, Emyr
176 1 - 0
Willmoth, Robert F
Peschiera, Jaime
170 0 - 1
Ellis, Daniel
Hughes, Charles
168 ½ - ½
Du Buf, Paul
3½ - 4½

Match Report by Michael Bennett

On Tuesday, the Hendon Lions journeyed to Stoke Newington for a big match against Hackney 1, hoping to consolidate our position at the top of Division 1.

Hendon got off to a poor start with a rare loss by Peter, when his queen got trapped early in the game (0-1). However, Daniel Ellis equalized the score about 30 mins later, with a typically belligerent attacking game against the dangerous Jaime Peschiera (1-1).

All the other games lasted the distance.

Tomer Eden outplayed his young opponent in fine positional style and reached a good knight v bad bishop ending, but was unable to break through (1.5-1.5) Next Cristian brought his score to an unbeaten 13/15 (!) for the season by patient defence including a brave king march, followed by a counter-attack as his opponent ran short of time (2.5-1.5). Then Rob (who had suffered a neck injury earlier in the day and was in some pain, but to his credit decided to play anyway) unfortunately missed a win in mutual time-trouble, and eventually lost too much material (2.5-2.5). Tense.

Going into the last 5 minutes of the match, Paul’s game on bottom board had now reached a drawish rook ending, but he was behind on time in the QP finish, with his opponent pressing. On top board Julian was 2 pawns down in a rook ending and clearly losing. So David on board 2 knew he had to press for a win to draw the match, despite the associated risks.

And then – out of the blue – Julian’s opponent fell into a classic mid-board stalemate trap! Very easy to miss in time trouble. (3-3)

To seal the victory David then won his game, and Paul showed great tenacity to hold the draw. (4.5-3.5)

Congratulations to the whole team on a very gritty performance!

The Lions now have 10.5/11 match points, going into the biggest match of the season, against Kings Head 1 on Monday.