In the eighth round of the London Online Chess League, the Hendon teams were undefeated once again, and came very close to a clean sweep!
|SchachAttack||SchachAttack||Hendon Hurricanes||Hendon Hurricanes|
|1||IM Dhulipalla Bala Chandra Prasad||2470||1 - 0||Gary Senior||2215|
|2||Muhammad Ismayilov||2275||0 - 1||CM Rob Willmoth||2200|
|3||Mike Healey||2260||1 - 0||Alex Leslie||2088|
|4||Michael Handley||2080||0 - 1||Kennan Kesterson||1983|
|2 - 2|
In the Queens Division, the Hurricanes faced SchachAttack, whom we last faced in the last round of season 2. They were a tough side then, and they were even tougher tonight!
On Board 1, we were delighted to see our long-time member Gary Senior making his online debut for the club! Unfortunately, he was facing a warm welcome to the competition in the form of an International Master, Dhulipalla Bala Chandra Prasad! Gary unfortunately came under a strong attack in the Dutch Defence, losing a critical pawn, as well as the two bishops, and his opponent confidently converted the ending.
There was better news on Board 2, where Rob avenged his defeat against the same opponent in season 2 in some style, in a game which justifiably made an appearance on the live commentary!
Kennan also completed a fantastic attack against his strong opponent to put us on the verge of victory!
That left the outcome of the match dependent on Alex Leslie’s game on Board 3. Alex came out of the opening with a great position, having strong pressure down the d-file. There were some mutual mistakes in the following complications, with Alex’s opponent sacrificing the exchange and Alex sacrificing it back, but the ultimate outcome was a winning queen-and-rook ending, with Alex having six pawns against five.
Unfortunately, Alex had much less time than his opponent, and this proved to be a decisive factor, with the major pieces rampant, neither king very safe, and the position tricky to play. It was very difficult to muster the accuracy required with so little time, and Alex sadly fell into a snap checkmate.
Nonetheless, a drawn match against such a strong side is a great result, so congratulations to the team!
The round 8 games in the Queens Division are currently available here.
|Wimbledon A||Wimbledon A||Hendon Spitfires||Hendon Spitfires|
|1||Peter Hasson||2073||½ - ½||David Amior||1900|
|2||Nick Keene||2073||½ - ½||Chris Rogal||1803|
|3||Mike Williams||1788||0 - 1||Anton Drel||1800|
|4||DEFAULT||0 - 1||James Baxter||1700|
|1 - 3|
In the Rooks Division, the Spitfires started with a free win against Wimbledon A due to a default.
David got a solid draw on Board 1. I thought he was slightly worse for a while as his opponent had the two bishops, but the game eventually simplified to a major piece ending where his opponent decided not to press matters, with his pieces tied down to the defence of an advanced pawn.
On Board 2, I thought Chris was very fortunate to survive a position where his opponent had two bishops for a rook and pawn, and Chris’s knight was stuck on h4. There were some mutual missed tactics, but in the end Chris broke out and pushed his b-pawn, leaving his opponent with no option but to force perpetual check.
On Board 3, Anton reached a complex middlegame. Initially it looked like his opponent might be able to open the kingside to his advantage, but he didn’t play in the most incisive way, and eventually weakened his own king position with 32.h4. After that his position fell apart surprisingly quickly as Anton’s pieces flooded in.
A good win, as Wimbledon are a strong side, even given the default. Well done Spitfires!
The round 8 games in the Rooks Division are currently available here.
|Hendon Harriers||Hendon Harriers||Battersea Too||Battersea Too|
|1||Gul Kapur||1533||1 - 0||Bill Drennan||1833|
|2||Matty Berenblut||1450||0 - 1||Malcolm Dancy||1780|
|3||Marcel Berenblut||1450||1 - 0||Ed Clark||1488|
|4||Stanley Jacobs||1390||1 - 0||Marco Flaccavento||1023|
|3 - 1|
In the Bishops Division, the Harriers faced a Battersea side that outgraded us on three of four boards. However, the Harriers weren’t daunted, and ran out winners!
On Board 1, Gul was a bit lucky not to fall into an opening trap in the Nimzo-Indian, but later managed to get a much better position in a major piece ending (lots of those today!), and showed good technique to finish off his higher-rated opponent once he won a crucial pawn.
On Board 2, Matty Berenblut was also facing a higher-rated opponent, but he got a great position, a pawn up in a rook-and-bishop ending. After some mutual missed tactics, that became two pawns, and I had high hopes Matty would win. Unfortunately, he lost control of the position, and ended up moving his king into a mating net. A very good try from which Matty can take a lot of positives!
On Board 3, Berenblut Senior had a more straightforward time than his son, getting a great position after his opponent played a dodgy line of the Sicilian, later winning the exchange plus two pawns and converting comfortably.
Last but not least, on Board 4, Stanley won a piece in the opening, and carried it into the ending, but ultimately didn’t need it, as he mated his opponent nicely in the corner of the board!
Congratulations to the Harriers on an excellent win!
The round 8 games in the Bishops Division are currently available here.
Many thanks to everyone who played this week!
You can find a list of all stories about season 3 of the London Online Chess League here.