SNCL 2023 - Rounds 5 and 6

Crawford Macnab
19 March 2023

Another strong showing for both teams in the SNCL rounds 5 and 6.

CSBOS 1 - Dumfries & District

In the morning CSBOS1 beat Dumfries by 3 - 2.

Dumfries & District Dumfries & District CSBOS 1 CSBOS 1
Michael Green
1995 1 - 0
Mike Chisholm
Stavros Karampatos
1832 0 - 1
Chris James
Stuart Marchbank
1666 0 - 1
Jamie Mollison
Jonathan Bell
1 - 0
Hugh Lamarque
Alex Mcdonald
1085 0 - 1
Crawford Macnab
2 - 3

Top versus bottom teams does not always go the way of the higher placed teams, and this was a tough one that we scraped through in the end.

Chris had a nice win with queen and bishop mating threats on the white squares strong enough to simply ignore a threat against his rook.

Hugh had a tricky game where he looked to be some pawns ahead but with a slightly exposed king. Eventually he had a king and rook and some passed pawns against king rook and bishop plus fewer pawns. There were certainly drawing chances but unfortunately he swapped off rooks that resulted in a winning ending for his opponent.

My opponent played solidly if a little passively against my Pirc formation. With more space I pushed my kingside pawns to open my queen and rook along the open g file. This allowed mating threats on g2 and h2, and led to my opponent protecting h2 only to allow a mate on g2.

Jamie was a pawn up but had to be patient to challenge whites control of the open e file. His opponent sacrificed a knight, possibly expecting to reclaim Jamies knight a few moves later but this proved unsound. The game concluded with a knight fork on king and queen.

Mike played a line with black that invested a pawn but failed to follow up actively enough and was then just a pawn down. His opponent then created a stong attack against Mike’s king.

A tough one but a win in the end!

CSBOS 2 - Oban

In the morning CSBOS2 drew with Oban.

Oban Oban CSBOS 2 CSBOS 2
Duncan Campbell
1837 ½ - ½
Richard Scott
Lukasz Nowak
1736 1 - 0
Euan McDiarmid
Alistair Campbell
1663 ½ - ½
Stuart Ballantyne
Steven David Harvey
1650 ½ - ½
João Reis
Dimitris Giannokopoulas
0 - 1
Nick West
2½ - 2½

As expected, Oban outgraded us on all boards so this was going to be challenging.

Stuart felt he was better out of the opening going a pawn up but his opponent managed to get a kingside attack going that was tricky to repel.

A solid debut for João with a steady draw.

Did not see the other games but important win for Nick on bottom board.

Richard was behind on time which might have proved decisive but in the end a draw was agreed.

CSBOS 1 - East Kilbride

In the afternoon CSBOS1 beat East Kilbride by 4½ - ½.

CSBOS 1 CSBOS 1 East Kilbride East Kilbride
Mike Chisholm
1958 1 - 0
Sanjith Madhaven
Chris James
1853 1 - 0
Alan Jelfs
Jamie Mollison
1839 ½ - ½
Frankie Murray
Hugh Lamarque
1816 1 - 0
Tushar Roul
Crawford Macnab
1760 1 - 0
Jim Robertson
4½ - ½

Hugh played a Sicilian defence with his opponent going for a grand prix attack. White rushed ahead with his Qg3 and Bh6 plan against black’s g7. Black played Bf8 to defend and then pushed pawn to b4 kicking out the Nc3 defender which won the e4 pawn. A few moves later a simple Kh8 won the bishop on h6 with no compensation.

Chris had another steady win with strong major piece pressure down the queenside winning a few pawns and the game.

Mike’s game looked a bit messy with his opponent appearing to have more active pieces in an endgame with isolated pawns. Not seeing the details but later Mike centralised his king and a stong passed central pawn was decisive.

Jamie’s game had some blockaded pawn formations and his opponent got his queen behind the pawn chain winiining back a few pawns. Possibly with the match result already decided a draw was offered which Jamie accepted.

I played a quiet side line against the caro kann where my opponent responded with a slow d6 Nd7 Qe7 plan. With more space I pushed f4 and centralised my rooks. Unfortunately I managed to convince myself that I did not need to defend my loose knight on d4 only to be hit by a classic Nxh2 tactic that was going to win the exchange as a minimum. My opponent for some reason felt he could not take the exchange which allowed me to play some tactics against his Qe7 and uncastled king on e8. After that the tables turned although my king was a bit exposed.

A great result against the 3rd place team.

CSBOS 2 - Forth Valley B

In the afternoon CSBOS2 beat Forth Valley B by 3 - 2.

CSBOS 2 CSBOS 2 Forth Valley B Forth Valley B
Richard Scott
1677 ½ - ½
Alan C Petrie
Euan McDiarmid
1519 1 - 0
Stephen H Smith
Stuart Ballantyne
1442 1 - 0
David A Hewitt
João Reis
½ - ½
Nathaniel Loch
Nick West
1356 0 - 1
William M Cook
3 - 2

João had another solid draw on board 4.

Stuart had an impressive win against Dave Hewitt on board 3.

The opening looked to go horribly wrong for Euan with his opponent getting his knights into strong forward squares. When the smoke cleared Euan had made the most of it with a knight against three passed king side pawns! In the end the rook and knight managed to win all the kingside pawns reaching a winning ending. An unexpected result after the opening but most welcome!

Richard reached a complicated ending with rook and bishop against a lone queen. Both had some pawns. Eventually Richard reached a position where his rook was protected by his bishop which made it difficult for the lone queen to make progress. His opponent decided to win the unprotected a pawn when his only chance was to win the h pawn creating a passed pawn. Instead Richard won the h pawn and a draw was agreed.

With only round 7 to play, the 2nd team play Corstorphine - a draw will ensure promotion, a win will clinch the league title!

The 1st team play Forth Valley A - promotion is already achieved. A win will clinch the league title. Getting 1½ game points should also be enough!

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