The good news is we won the semi-final but not as easy as the scorecard may suggest.
Andrew Dovey lost a piece but fought back for a brilliant draw, the first game to finish. The second game to end was Anthony Barnett’s. With only 10 minutes left against his opponent’s hour, Anthony achieved a remarkable two-move forced mate position on the board which prompted a resignation.
This still left work to do as with a 2-2 result, a board count tie-break would have eliminated Anthony’s Board 4 win.
My own position was doubtful. Relief was fairly speedy however as Ian Mills on the next board produced one of his best games to win the match. The computer tells him he had just one inaccuracy!
This left me playing with the match won (again), my sacrifice of two pawns for the attack never ultimately tested as my opponent offered a draw, hurriedly accepted.
We progress to the Kent Finals Day in June to play a team from Maidstone or Lewisham who meet in the other semi-final.
Grateful thanks, by the way, to Alan Hanreck, a FIDE Master from Charlton, who oversaw the match for us for no personal reward. What a nice act of kindness!
This Wednesday 11th we’ll have Beckenham and Bromley 5, captained by Martin Newman and the only team to make the Kent League semi-finals this season, playing Medway for a place in the Tom Fuller Cup final.
The match should start at 7:45pm, come along to root for our team if you can!
Last night we played a very strong Coulsdon team (heavily outgraded on boards 2-4) and managed a draw.
Thank you Ian for playing and securing your win; didn’t see much of the game up in the rafters! But I assume you turned the screws on him from the point I saw to. He also had time to prep for the game as it was obvious to them you were going to be playing from the request we made, so you were playing with a potential handicap of sorts. Well done.
Jon and Roy: great performances against higher grades players and getting the draws. Really tough opponents: their board two current grade is 2025 to give some context.
Me: played possibly the highest graded player I have ever played in a league game and gave a good account of myself, but wasn’t to be, unfortunately, just losing out in endgame position from a passed pawn that I should have dealt with earlier.
Beckenham and Bromley 5 got a 2-2 draw at Lewisham on 23rd March in their fifth match. Ian Mills had a straightforward win and Andrew Dovey and Martin Newman recorded draws.
On 30th March, Lewisham 5 visited Sidcup, winning 4-0 against a slightly weaker than the normal-looking team.
This leaves us needing to win our sixth match to ensure progression to the semi-final stage. We play at home to Sidcup next week. In fact, four teams are in contention (including Beckenham and Bromley 6 ) for the two places. At present, Beckenham and Bromley 5 are in second place with a game in hand over the leaders Petts Wood and Orpington.
Travelling to the farthest club in the Kent Metropolitan division – Gravesend – our 3rd team managed to draw the match last night. Pascal and Steve drew their games and all the other ones were taken by the Black pieces, with Rudy and Adrian scoring full points for our team.
With one match left in this division, our team doesn’t have the chance to qualify for the semifinals and will fight for fourth place.