Our first team took an important step towards avoiding relegation from Middlesex League Division 1 on Thursday with a crushing win over bottom side Metropolitan.
The Lions had suffered a shock defeat away against the same opponents three weeks earlier, despite having an equal or better rating on five out of six boards. Thankfully, for this home fixture we were able to get a very strong team out, which cruised home, conceding just a single half-point.
|Hendon 1||Hendon 1||Metropolitan 1||Metropolitan 1|
|1||D'Costa, Lorin||2439||1 - 0||Calvert, D Ian||2002|
|2||Richardson, John||2374||1 - 0||Law, Jeremy||1977|
|3||Willmoth, Rob||2243||1 - 0||Squibbs, A||1971|
|4||Senior, Gary||2148||1 - 0||Vachtfeidl, Petr||1937|
|5||Thatte, Nishchal||2105||1 - 0||Lepetun, Jan||1859|
|6||Sanitt, Ethan||2098||½ - ½||Kitchen, John F||1733|
|5½ - ½|
The problem is this is only Hendon 1’s second win of the season. The team is fourth out of seven in the league, but has played two or three matches more than Ealing and Kings Head above and below, and is fifth on match points dropped.
We have four crucial matches remaining against other mid-table sides, facing Ealing at home, Hackney away, and Kings Head twice, from which we need to pick up some points.
It’s going to be a close run thing, and we may yet rue dropping 1½ match points away against fellow strugglers Metropolitan and Hammersmith. Success or failure will likely hinge on our ability to get our strongest possible teams out, especially for the home fixtures. If we can win both of those, we should be fine, but it won’t be easy.
A week earlier, Hendon 2 beat Harrow 1 at home, aided by a default.
|Hendon 2||Hendon 2||Harrow 1||Harrow 1|
|1||Robinson, James||1903||½ - ½||Walkusz, Miroslaw||2084|
|2||Amior, David||1896||½ - ½||Alldritt, Nigel||2017|
|3||Karas, Eugenia||1865||0 - 1||Dhemrait, Jagdeep||1986|
|4||Kent, Anthony||1809||1 - 0||Heidrich, Clive||1746|
|5||WALKOVER||1 - 0||DEFAULT|
|6||Pepe, Salvatore||1690||1 - 0||Dhemrait, Surjit S||1614|
|4 - 2|
The Tigers are now in third place in Division 2, just half a match point behind leaders Kings Head 2 and Albany, though both those two sides have a match in hand. Nonetheless the Tigers are having a good season, with five wins already, and have an outside chance of promotion, which would save Hendon 1 from relegation even if they did finish in the bottom two.
Many thanks to all who played in these two matches, and to Chris Rogal for acting as captain in my absence!