Saturday, 21 September 2013
Final Round of CCs (Open and Major)
The Grinder Reports:
Ricky Vaja exacted revenge for his defeat by me in round 4. I lost both of the quickplay games in the playoff so Ricky takes the Major title.
Apologies to Ray, who turned up to offer moral support but witnessed an inept performance by me!
The main event was much more interesting. Andy Morley vs. Graham Sharpe and Martin Burrows vs. Alan Byron to decide the county championship. Andy held a half point lead from the others.
Alan beat Martin in a queen vs. rooks ending. So Graham needed to win to force a playoff against Alan. A draw would see Andy vs. Alan in a playoff, and a win for Andy would give him the title outright.
It was a great game. Andy had a pawn wedge on e5, open lines and appeared to have prospects for a kingside attack. Graham held a solid defensive position and exchanges took place which led to a bishop v knight ending with 6 pawns each.
It was a superb endgame. Graham's knight seemed better than the bishop. His pawns were all on the opposite colour squares, king holding the centre and threatening the pawn at e5. Andy's h3 pawn also came under attack by the knight, but it could not be taken due to the threat of being paralysed by the bishop. It was complicated, and Andy came under great time pressure. He offered the draw. Graham, knowing a draw was no use to him, played on, and with his own time ebbing away, lost whilst trying to get the win he needed.