Monday, 29 December 2014

Georges Koltanowski

Georges Koltanowski was a Belgian (later American) chess player who was one of the top European players in the 1930s.

He was a regular in the top tournaments and had many big-name scalps. Below is a game from the 1936/37 Hastings tournament where he drew with (and probably should have beaten) the eventual winner, former (and future) world champion, Alexander Alekhine.

So why is there a game from Georges Koltanowski on a website about Colchester Chess Club?

While Koltanowski (often called Kolty) was a very strong player, he was most famous for his incredible feats of blindfold chess. Georges Koltanowski set a world record on 20th September 1937, in a 34-game simultaneous match in Edinburgh, when playing blindfolded he won 24 games and lost 10, over a period of 13 hours. This remained the world record until November 2011. He also set another blindfold record in 1960 when be played 56 consecutive blindfolded 10-second per move games - winning 50 of them.

As part of a tour of the UK, Kolty visited Colchester Chess Club On the 24th March 1937 and gave a blindfold simultaneous display. He played 6 games - winning five (against Dr L S Penrose, Dr R C Turnbull, Councillor A H Cross, Mr R Garside and Mr E Dowsett) and drawing one (against Mr B Grey). After the simultaneous display he gave a short lecture containing anecdotes about his career and chess problems. The write-up about the event mentions that he showed himself to be an expert in the Colle system - he later wrote a book about this opening which he often used against amateur opponents (but rarely against strong players).

Kolty returned to give a second blindfold simultaneous display at Colchester Chess Club on the 29th January 1938. This time he played eight games - seven wins (against Cross, Turnbull, Stanley & Grey, Penrose & Krumpach, Hucklesby, Simmons, Garside & Sainsbury) and one loss (Rossiter & Spurge - playing together). After the simultaneous match he gave a short lecture about the Colle system - perhaps a specific request following his previous visit.

The signed picture of Kolty, above, was dedicated to Lionel Penrose (the match secretary at the club at that time).

Many of Kolty's relatives died in the holocaust, but Kolty survived as at the start of the 2nd World War he was touring South America. The American consul in Havana saw him giving a chess exhibition and decided to give him a US visa. He stayed in America where he wrote over 19,000 chess columns for the San Francisco Chronicle over a period of 52 years, he also became president of the United States Chess Federation. Unusually for a non-world class player, he made his living from chess - giving exhibitions and writing numerous books. He died in 2000 aged 96.

Further details about Kolty's visits to Colchester can be found in the scanned historical archives on the About the Club page.


[Event "Hastings 3637"] [Site "Hastings"] [Date "1936.??.??"] [Round "9"] [White "Koltanowski, George"] [Black "Alekhine, Alexander"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [ECO "A48"] [Annotator "Barnes, Nathan"] [PlyCount "88"] [EventDate "1936.12.??"] [EventType "tourn"] [EventRounds "9"] [EventCountry "ENG"] [Source "ChessBase"] [SourceDate "1999.07.01"] 1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3 b6 3. e3 Bb7 4. Nbd2 c5 5. c3 g6 6. Bd3 Bg7 7. e4 d6 8. O-O O-O 9. Qe2 cxd4 10. cxd4 {A better choice than Nxd4 as it maintains a strong presence in the centre.} Nc6 11. a3 Nd7 {The discovered attack from the g7 bishop threatens to win the d4 pawn.} 12. Nb3 a5 13. a4 {Preventing Black from playing a4 to push the knight away so that he can win the pawn on d4. The simple 13.Be3 was a bit better though.} Nb4 {the disadvantage of playing a4 - the Black knight occupies the hole on b4.} 14. Bb5 Nf6 15. d5 e6 {trying to reopen the a8-h1 diagonal} 16. dxe6 Nxe4 $2 (16... fxe6 17. Ng5 (17. Bg5 $2 { loses a pawn} Bxe4) 17... Qe7 18. Nd4 e5 $1 {and Black is okay} (18... Bc8 $2 { loses material} 19. Bc4)) 17. Ng5 $1 {neither the pawn on e6 or the knight on g5 can be safely captured} Bd5 (17... fxe6 $2 18. Nxe4 {wins a piece}) (17... Nxg5 $4 18. e7 {forking the queen and rook}) 18. exf7+ Kh8 {forced} (18... Bxf7 $2 {loses a piece} 19. Nxf7 Rxf7 20. Qxe4) (18... Rxf7 19. Nxf7 Bxf7 (19... Kxf7 {is about the same}) 20. Qxe4 Bxb3 {and Black has not got sufficient compensation for the exchange}) 19. Nxe4 Bxb3 20. Bg5 {developing with tempo} Qc7 21. Rac1 Qxf7 22. Nxd6 {White has come out a pawn up} Qe6 23. Qxe6 Bxe6 24. Bc4 Bxc4 25. Nxc4 Nd3 26. Rc2 (26. Nxb6 $2 Nxc1 27. Bxc1 {and Black is slightly better} (27. Nxa8 $2 Ne2+ $1 {Moving with check - meaning White gains a winning material advantage} 28. Kh1 Rxa8)) 26... Rac8 27. b3 {Necessary, otherwise Black wins back the material} (27. -- Nxb2 28. Rfc1 (28. Rxb2 Rxc4 29. Ra2) 28... Nxa4) 27... Rf5 28. Be3 b5 29. axb5 Rxb5 30. Rd2 Rxb3 31. Nxa5 Ra3 32. Rfd1 Rcc3 33. Nc4 Rxc4 34. Rxd3 Rxd3 35. Rxd3 h6 36. g3 { preventing any back-rank mates} Kh7 37. h4 h5 38. Kg2 Rc7 39. Ra3 Kg8 40. Ra7 Rxa7 41. Bxa7 Kf7 42. Kf3 Ke6 43. Ke4 Bh6 44. f3 Bf8 {White has an extra pawn but will not be able to force a win} 1/2-1/2

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

History of Colchester Chess Club 1

Colchester Chess Club has been around for a very long time (the exact date is not known but the club has existed formally since 1888) and a large amount of historical material about the club has been preserved.

The club archive contains material going as far back as 1905 and all of this is in the process of being scanned in and will be made available online. The archive contains match reports, minutes of meetings, newspaper cuttings and much more. Included with the archive was a pamphlet from Colchester Library (circa 1938 - exact date not known) listing the chess books they had in stock. The list was written by an unknown member of the Colchester Chess Club and also includes brief descriptions of some of the books listed.

The introductory text is reproduced below:


Books can improve your game if you are willing to give them serious consideration. Chess masters have their own methods of play: their writings can be of service to you. The following list of books does not, unfortunately, contain the early classics - Ruy Lopez, Polerio, Philidor, Ponziani, Koch or Horwitz - but copies of their works together with those of many modern masters will be borrowed for you by the Public Library on request.


As well as the list of books there are comments about books written by Capablanca, Euwe, Greig, Harley, Murray, Spielmann and Tartakower.

A pdf of the pamphlet can be viewed/downloaded here.

Monday, 22 December 2014


Here is the game played on Board 1 in the recent Colchester A v Wethersfield match. An interesting (though, according to the computer, dubious) sacrifice by Black on move 19 leads to a complicated game that White fails to find the right path through. Annotations by the winner.

[Event "NECL Plate 2014/15"] [Site "?"] [Date "2014.12.??"] [Round "?"] [White "Van Poucke, Stefaan"] [Black "Stemp, Matt"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "D02"] [Annotator "Stemp, Matt"] [PlyCount "120"] [WhiteTeam "Colchester A"] [BlackTeam "Wethersfield"] {Here’s an interesting game I played in the recent match between Colchester A and Wethersfield. I’m playing black; watch out for a couple of unnecessary mistakes I make in the middle!} 1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3 d5 3. b3 {An unusual move that leads to easy equality for Black, who can now treat the game as a reversed Queen’s Gambit Declined.} Bf5 4. e3 e6 5. Be2 c5 6. O-O Nc6 7. a3 {Unnecessarily losing time, as Nb4 is not a threat. White should really seek to play c4 at the first opportunity to make sense of b3.} Bd6 8. Bb2 cxd4 9. exd4 {This exchange provides an edge for Black due to the misplaced bishop on b2.} O-O 10. Nh4 Be4 11. Nd2 Qc7 12. h3 Rac8 13. Rc1 {This was the last opportunity for White to play c4, as the pawns on the queenside are now becoming a liability.} Qe7 14. b4 {Ra1 was better, maintaining a more flexible pawn structure, though understandably White does not want to concede that Rc1 was inaccurate.} Bf4 15. Nhf3 Bg6 16. g3 Bh6 17. Ra1 Rfd8 18. Nh4 {After some piece-shuffling Black has emerged from the opening with a decent advantage. However, Black now attempts to force the issue…} Bxc2 $6 {A tempting move given the positions of Black’s rook on c8 and knight on c6, together with White’s awkwardly placed minor pieces on the 2nd rank and weak queenside. But Black has miscalculated…} 19. Qxc2 Nxd4 20. Qd1 {20. Qd3 is equivalent} Nxe2+ $2 (20... Rc2 {is better, after which Black can claim compensation after} 21. Bxd4 Rxd2 22. Bxf6 Qxf6 23. Qe1 Rc8 {However, 20...Nxe2 was based on a poor evaluation of the next move.}) 21. Qxe2 Rc2 $4 ({Instead, Black does better to bail out with} 21... Bxd2 22. Qxd2 Ne4 {and attempt to draw. Fortunately, White misses the winning move.}) 22. Bxf6 $2 (22. Nf5 {forking the queen and bishop is simply winning for White, though easy to miss because of the pinned e6 pawn.}) 22... Qxf6 23. Rad1 Qb2 24. Nhf3 {Black has (somehow) come out well, tying up White’s pieces with better piece activity. However, rather than the simple Qxa3 with three pawns for the piece, Black wants more… } e5 $2 25. Qxe5 $2 {Black once again relies upon White missing the key move. 25. Qd3! is significantly better for White, if not winning, as e4 is simply met by 26. Nxe4, due to the loose rook on d8.} Qxe5 26. Nxe5 Bxd2 {Black enters the endgame a pawn up with strong winning chances.} 27. Nd3 g6 28. Nc5 b6 29. Nb3 Bc3 30. Rd3 Bb2 31. a4 {Nd4 offered better chances to hold, forcing – at some point – a trade of knight for bishop. Now White’s pawns are weak, and with the passed d-pawn Black should be able to grind out a victory.} Rc4 32. Rb1 Bf6 33. Nd2 Rc3 34. Rb3 Rxd3 35. Rxd3 Kf8 36. Kf1 Ke7 37. Ke2 Ke6 38. Re3+ Kd6 39. Rd3 Re8+ 40. Kd1 d4 {Black could have advanced this pawn much earlier (e.g. move 27)} 41. f3 $2 {A move that significantly weakens White’s position, making Black’s job much easier; Rf3 offered more hope.} Kd5 42. Kc2 Be5 {Re1 is also strong, if not stronger.} 43. Nb3 Rc8+ 44. Kd2 Rc4 45. f4 Bg7 {Bd6 is perhaps better, but Black wants to keep constant control of d4.} 46. a5 Rxb4 47. axb6 axb6 48. Ke2 f5 49. Kd2 Ra4 {A simple manoeuvre that further activates the rook.} 50. Nc1 Kc4 51. Kc2 Ra1 {White’s pieces are now completely tied up.} 52. Rd1 d3+ $1 {A nice move to secure the win. Neither piece can take the pawn because of the overloaded king.} 53. Nxd3 Rxd1 {Note that the bishop covers the b2 square against the knight.} 54. Ne5+ Bxe5 55. Kxd1 Bd4 56. Kc2 b5 57. g4 b4 58. gxf5 b3+ 59. Kb1 gxf5 60. h4 h5 {Overall, not a bad game. After a well-played opening, the Bxc2 sacrifice, while objectively not great, offered some serious initiative that led to a winning endgame. However, patience is key! Sometimes the simpler move is the wiser move, maintaining advantages rather than seeking for more than the position offers. While flashy moves can feel good to play, putting your opponent in the hot seat and often providing good practical chances, they are rarely the best moves on the board. In the middlegame especially, it is normally a better strategy to calmly improve your position and wait for better opportunities to capitalise. But then, who can refuse playing a sacrifice!} 0-1

Saturday, 13 December 2014

Matches against CRGS and Wethersfield

This week the A team beat Wethersfield (4-0) in the 3rd round of the plate competition. Matt Stemp won as a result of strong play following his speculative piece sacrifice that resulted in a dangerous position (for both players). Wethersfield defaulted on board 2. Aleksander Orava and Mike Wagstaff had fairly comfortable matches on boards 3 and 4. The semi-final of the plate competition will be in early January.

Date: Dec-2014
NECL Knockout - Plate
1 b Matt Stemp (e165) 1 0 Stefaan Van Poucke (148) w
2 w Nathan Barnes (146) 1 0 Default b
3 b Aleksander Orava (e155) 1 0 Ron Vallance (83) w
4 w Mike Wagstaff (147) 1 0 Sid McDonald (79) b
(avg=153) 4 0 (avg=103)

The D team remain top of Division 3 despite being beaten for the first time this season. On board 4, Shazia Jaufarally came the closest to winning - Ed and Mark were also involved in close matches - but eventually the grammar school won the match 4-0.

Date: Dec-2014
NECL Division 3
1 b Mohammud Jaufarally (e100) 0 1 Gorak Rajesh (163) w
2 w Ed Goodman (71) 0 1 Shivan Harani (102) b
3 b Mark Johnson (69) 0 1 Peter Harris (69) w
4 w Shazia Jaufarally (e55) 0 1 Lakindu Peries (80) b
(avg=73) 0 4 (avg=103)

Saturday, 29 November 2014

November summary

The current top ten players in the club grand prix are:

1stNathan Barnes7.5
2ndMohammud Jaufarally5
3rdSvein Kjenner4.5
4th=Clive Bellinger3
Mike Wagstaff3
6thEd Goodman3
7thMartin Harris3
8thAleksander Orava2.5
9thMark Johnson2
10thIan Gooding2

Games played in the club championship, Tony Locke rapidplay and the NECL league/knockout count for points in the grand prix. Where points are equal percentage score and then number of games played are used as tie-breakers. This month the top two have swapped places and Svein is the month's big gainer - moving up to 3rd.

Only one game has been played in the seeding round of the club championship (a draw between Dave Chatfield and Brian Remmer). In the Tony Locke Rapidplay Nathan Barnes is the only player on 3/3 - though Svein Kjenner is on 2/2 and there are a number of players who have won their first game but not yet played their second and third games yet.

In the NECL, two players have 100% records in league matches and have played more than one game - Nathan Barnes (3 games for the A team, 1 game for the B team) and Mohammud Jaufarally (2 games for the D team, 1 game for the C team). Two players are on 2.5 out of 3 - Aleksander Orava (2 games for the A team, 1 game for the B team) and Svein Kjenner (2 games for the A team, 1 game for the B team).

It is still early in the NECL season with some teams having only played one or two matches so far. In Division 2, Colchester A are in 1st place having won their first three matches and drawn their fourth. Colchester B are in 5th place having only played two games (losing to the A team and beating Dunmow). In Division 3, Colchester D are in 1st place after winning their first three matches; Colchester C are in 5th place winning one match and losing one (to the D team).

This week the B team beat Dunmow (3.5-0.5). Svein Kjenner won a pawn in the opening and was always in control on board 4 to continue his good start in his first NECL season. Mike Wagstaff also won a pawn early on and held onto his advantage throughout. Nathan Barnes probably should have lost but instead maintained his 100% record in the league - winning a queen and pawn endgame after surviving middlegame pressure. Aleksander Orava agreed a draw, after a fairly quiet Sicilian opening, when the team win was in the bag after the wins on boards 3 and 4.

Date: Nov-2014
NECL Division 2
1 w Derek Jones (128) ½ ½ Aleksander Orava (e155) b
2 b John Bradley (120) 0 1 Nathan Barnes (146) w
3 w Bill Atwood (111) 0 1 Mike Wagstaff (147) b
4 b John Fletcher (e100) 0 1 Svein Kjenner (e139) w
(avg=114) 0.5 3.5 (avg=146)


There are only two matches in December - Colchester D play CRGS in Division 3 and Colchester A play Wethersfield for the second time this season (in the 2nd round of the plate competition).

The position below is taken from the game Barnes, N - Burrows, J (Bury St Edmunds Chess Congress). White has an extra piece but Black has two additional pawns. Should White play 34.Qd8+ to force the exchange of queens? Answer in the comments.

Saturday, 22 November 2014

Match against Maldon

The A team drew their match against Maldon B - with draws on all four boards. The result keeps Colchester A at the top of Division 2 having played 4 matches (three wins and a draw). Maldon B came top of Division 2 last season.

Date: Nov-2014
NECL Division 2
1 b Dave Pearse (156) ½ ½ Ian Gooding (185) w
2 w Tom Winter (146) ½ ½ Mike Wagstaff (147) b
3 b Keith Cook (139) ½ ½ Svein Kjenner (e139) w
4 w Doug Mothershaw (114) ½ ½ Clive Bellinger (139) b
(avg=138) 2 2 (avg=152)


The D team were due to have a match against Braintree C but this has been postponed to later in the season.

Below is another Smith-Morra Gambit from Martin's games at the Paignton Congress in September.

Smith-Morra at Paignton
[Event "Paignton"] [Site "Paignton"] [Date "2014.09.02"] [Round "?"] [White "Harris, M."] [Black "Robson, C."] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B21"] [Annotator "Harris, M"] [PlyCount "57"] 1. e4 c5 2. d4 cxd4 3. c3 dxc3 4. Nxc3 {I thought I'd include this game to complete the comment I made in one of my other games about people shunning dynamic play in the Morra. This lady decided to accept the gambit but she didn't really know what to do after that and was basically lost after move 6. Which I suppose is why people do prefer the quieter lines.} d6 5. Nf3 a6 6. Bc4 Nf6 {e6 was better.} 7. e5 $1 b5 (7... dxe5 $2 8. Bxf7+ $3 Kxf7 9. Qxd8) 8. Bxf7+ Kxf7 9. exf6 Be6 $2 {A horrible blunder. Which often happens when you are on the back foot, as my opponent obviously was here.} (9... Qd7 10. Qd5+ Qe6+ {was an adequate defence against losing the rook if that was what my opponent was concerned about, but then Qd5+ was unnecessary and I would have played 10. Ng5 anyway and I still held the upper hand.}) 10. Ng5+ Ke8 (10... Kxf6 11. h4 h5 12. Nd5+ Bxd5 13. Qxd5 g6 14. Qe6+ Kg7 15. Qf7+ Kh6 16. Ne6+ g5 17. hxg5# {I didn't work all this out over the board but it was obvious that if Black's king went into the open it would be checkmated somehow.}) 11. Nxe6 Qd7 12. Nxg7+ Bxg7 13. Qh5+ Kd8 14. fxg7 Qe6+ 15. Be3 Re8 16. O-O Nd7 17. Rfe1 Qg8 18. Qd5 Qxd5 {Nd5 was better but I thought after the forced exchange of queens that Black would resign due to lack of counterplay. I was wrong but Black was still very much a lost cause.} 19. Nxd5 Rg8 20. Bh6 Ne5 21. Nxe7 Kxe7 22. f4 Ke6 23. fxe5 dxe5 24. Rac1 Rad8 25. Rc6+ Kf5 26. Rf1+ Ke4 27. Rf8 Rd1+ 28. Kf2 Rd2+ 29. Bxd2 {Anyone for the Morra?} 1-0

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

New website for junior club

The newly-formed Colchester Junior Chess Club continues to grow - it has well over 20 members now. They also have a new website with news about the club, training hints and much more.

Saturday, 8 November 2014

Colchester D win again

The D team won their 3rd match of the season - maintaining their 100% start. Simon Denney won his first game as a Colchester player, Ed Goodman won his second game in a row and on board 4 Mark Johnson drew against a higher-graded opponent.

Date: Nov-2014
NECL Division 3
1 w Trevor Dickerson (115) 1 0 Pete Smith (123) b
2 b Peter Saunders (112) 0 1 Simon Denney (115) w
3 w Mario Cassar (78) 0 1 Ed Goodman (71) b
4 b Scott Shelley (91) ½ ½ Mark Johnson (69) w
(avg=99) 1.5 2.5 (avg=94)


The D team's next match is on the 19th November against Braintree C.

Sunday, 2 November 2014

Bury St Edmunds Chess Congress

Six Colchester players took part in the annual Bury St Edmunds Chess Congress.

In the 50-player Minor (U120) Section, John Duff-Cole scored 2.5/5 to finish in 29th place. Shazia Jaufarally's 2/5 included a win over John. Also on 2/5 were Mark Johnson (whose results included a win over former Colchester player Dave Wood) and 10-year-old Nadia Jaufarally who lost her first three matches but finished strongly.

Playing up a section in the Intermediate (U145), Mohammud Jaufarally finished on 0.5/5.

In the Major (U170), Nathan Barnes finished in 15th place with a score of 2.5/5 - all five games were against higher-graded opponents. Two annotated games are given below - a win from round 2 against one of the players who finished in joint 3rd and one of Nathan's two defeats (the two players who beat Nathan finished in joint 1st).




[Event "Bury St Edmunds Congress 2014: Major"] [Site "Bury St Edmunds"] [Date "2014.10.25"] [Round "2"] [White "Barnes, Nathan"] [Black "Kirkham, Ed"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "A22"] [Annotator "Barnes, Nathan"] [PlyCount "65"] [EventDate "2014.10.25"] {Board: 4 White ECF: 146 Black ECF: 155} 1. c4 d6 2. g3 e5 3. Bg2 Nf6 4. Nc3 Be7 5. d3 Nbd7 6. e4 {White has the Botvinnik system setup with pawns on c4, d3 and e4.} c6 7. Nge2 Nc5 8. O-O Bg4 9. f3 Bh5 {e6 or d7 would be better squares for the bishop as it would help to support advances in the centre.} 10. Be3 Ne6 11. d4 exd4 {Slightly inaccurate - this allows White to get a strong knight on d4.} 12. Nxd4 O-O 13. Nf5 {Winning the bishop pair} Bg6 14. Nxe7+ Qxe7 15. b4 Nd7 (15... a5 $5 {effectively neutralises White's advance on the queenside.}) 16. b5 (16. f4 $142 f5 17. exf5 Rxf5) 16... Nec5 17. bxc6 bxc6 18. Re1 (18. -- f5 {I thought this would be good for Black and so decided to play a move that prevents this.}) 18... f6 (18... f5 $4 19. exf5 {and White wins a piece} Qf6 (19... Bxf5 20. Bxc5 Qf6 21. Bd4) 20. fxg6) 19. Qd2 Ne5 20. Bxc5 dxc5 21. f4 $5 {Forcing the knight away from its strong position in the centre. Black wins a pawn - but this is likely to be only temporary as Black's doubled c pawns form an easy target. A well-timed push of the e pawn will release the bishop on g2 and could cause Black some problems.} Nxc4 22. Qe2 Bf7 23. e5 $1 { every other move means Black keeps his one pawn advantage} fxe5 (23... -- 24. e6 $1 {wins a piece} Bxe6 (24... Bg6 25. Qxc4) 25. Qxe6+ Qxe6 26. Rxe6) 24. Bxc6 Rad8 25. Rad1 Nb6 (25... -- 26. Nd5 $1 {is White's threat - gaining a substantial material advantage.} Qe6 (26... Bxd5 27. Bxd5+ Kh8 28. Bxc4) 27. Qxc4 {The bishop is safe as if Black takes it then the white knight can fork Black's king and queen - leading to White winning a rook.}) 26. Rxd8 Rxd8 27. Qxe5 Qd6 $6 28. Rd1 $1 Qf8 29. Rxd8 Qxd8 30. Qxc5 { White is now a pawn ahead} Bxa2 $2 {In severe time pressure Black miscalculates and doesn't see that the white queen can come back to f2.} 31. Nxa2 Qd1+ 32. Kg2 Nc4 $2 (32... Qd2+ 33. Qf2 {is the move that Black missed - leaving White a piece up}) 33. Bd5+ 1-0


[Event "Bury St Edmunds Congress 2014: Major"] [Site "?"] [Date "2014.10.25"] [Round "3"] [White "Daugman, John"] [Black "Barnes, Nathan"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "D18"] [Annotator "Barnes, Nathan"] [PlyCount "95"] [EventDate "25.??.??"] {D18: Slav Defence: 5 a4 Bf5 6 e3} {Board: 2 White ECF: 169 Black ECF: 146} 1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. Nc3 dxc4 5. a4 Bf5 6. e3 e6 7. Bxc4 Bb4 8. Qb3 a5 9. O-O Nbd7 10. Na2 Be7 11. Nh4 (11. Qxb7 {is safe, but leads to a forced draw} Rb8 12. Qxc6 $4 (12. Qa6 Ra8 13. Qxc6 Rc8 14. Qb5 Rb8 {and the only way to avoid losing the queen is to take a draw by repetition}) 12... Rb6 {traps the queen}) 11... Be4 12. Nc3 Bd5 13. Nxd5 (13. Bxd5 Nxd5 14. Nxd5 cxd5 15. Nf3 Qb6 16. Qxb6 Nxb6 17. b3 f6 18. Bd2 Kd7 19. Rfc1 Rhc8 20. Ne1 Rxc1 21. Rxc1 Ba3 22. Rc2 Nc8 23. Nd3 Ne7 24. Nc5+ Bxc5 25. Rxc5 b6 26. Rc2 h5 27. f3 Nc6 28. Kf2 Rb8 29. Ke2 b5 30. axb5 Rxb5 31. Ra2 Rxb3 32. Bxa5 Nxa5 {1/2-1/2 (32) Ivanchuk, V (2781)-Anand,V (2798) Bilbao 2008}) 13... Nxd5 {with a discovered attach on the h4 knight} 14. Nf3 Qb6 15. e4 $146 (15. Qd1 O-O 16. e4 Nb4 17. Qe2 Rad8 18. Be3 c5 19. Bb5 cxd4 20. Bxd4 Bc5 {1-0 (51) Mirzoev,A (2529)-Camarena Gimenez,R (2376) La Roda 2005}) 15... Qxb3 16. Bxb3 Nb4 {The knight occupies a strong position here.} 17. Rd1 Nf6 18. e5 Nfd5 {Black's knights dominate the board - White's minor pieces lack coordination.} 19. Ng5 h6 20. Ne4 O-O 21. g3 Rac8 22. Bd2 Rfd8 {looking to start targeting the weak pawn on d4} 23. Nc3 {Black has come out of the opening better and has comfortably equalised.} c5 $6 {the c5 pawn push is often a vital move in the Slav defense - but the timing is not quite right here.} 24. Nxd5 exd5 {Nxd5 was the better choice - but I hadn't yet realised how I had weakened my position with c5.} 25. dxc5 d4 $5 {the best chance for counterplay} (25... -- 26. Bxb4 axb4 27. Rxd5 {wins a pawn for White }) 26. Bxb4 axb4 27. e6 d3 28. exf7+ Kf8 29. Rd2 (29. -- d2 {and Black has no problems}) 29... Rd4 30. Be6 Rxc5 31. b3 Rc2 32. Rad1 {White had to move one of his rooks to d1 to prevent Black from winning} (32. Rxc2 $4 dxc2 33. Bg4 Rxg4 34. Rc1 Rc4 35. bxc4 b3 {and White can't prevent a pawn from queening}) 32... Re4 33. Bf5 Re2 $2 {Missing the chance to equalise with Re1+ - I forgot to check all checks} (33... Re1+ 34. Rxe1 Rxd2 35. Bg6 Rb2 36. Rc1 Rc2 37. Rxc2 dxc2 38. Bxc2 Kxf7 {and Black will easily hold the opposite-coloured bishop endgame}) 34. Rxd3 Rxf2 35. Rd8+ $1 {and White went on to win} 1-0


Photos are from the pool of photos taken by tournament organiser Bob Jones. Further photos from the event can be found here and the full tournament cross-tables are available for the Minor, Intermediate, Major and Open sections.

On the same weekend, Martin Harris scored 2/5 in the Foundation (U121) Section of the Scarborough Chess Congress.

Saturday, 1 November 2014

October summary - including two more NECL wins

The current top ten players in the club grand prix are:

1stMohammud Jaufarally5
2ndNathan Barnes4.5
3rdMartin Harris2.5
4th=Clive Bellinger2
Aleksander Orava2
6thEd Goodman2
7thIan Gooding1.5
8thMike Wagstaff1.5
9th=Dave Chatfield1
Svein Kjenner1
Mark Johnson1

Games played in the club championship, Tony Locke rapidplay and the NECL league/knockout count for points in the grand prix. Where points are equal percentage score and number of games played are used as tie-breakers. The top two in the grand prix are due to play each other in both the club championship and the Tony Locke rapidplay - giving the chance for either one of them to extend their lead at the top or to allow the chasing pack to catch-up.

No games have been played in the club championship yet. In the Tony Locke Rapidplay Mohammud Jaufarally is the only player on 2/2 - thought there are a number of players who have won their first game but not yet played their second game.

In the NECL, three players have 100% records in league matches and have played more than one game - Nathan Barnes (3 games for the A team), Mohammud Jaufarally (2 games for the D team, 1 game for the C team) and Aleksander Orava (2 games for the A team).

It is very early in the NECL season with some teams not even having played their first match yet. In Division 2, Colchester A are in 1st place having won their first three matches. Colchester B have only played one game (losing to the A team). In Division 3, Colchester D are in 1st place after winning their first two matches; Colchester C are in 2nd place winning one match and losing one (to the D team).

This week the A team beat Wethersfield (3.5-0.5). Matt Stemp got his first win for the team on board 2. Aleksander Orava and Nathan Barnes won matches with stronger endgame play - Aleksander's better king activity being enough to win in a pawn and same-colour bishop endgame and Nathan's better rook activity enabling him to win a pawn and rook endgame despite being a pawn down. Ian forced a three-fold repetition with time running out.

Date: Oct-2014
NECL Division 2
1 b Ian Gooding (185) ½ ½ Stefaan Van Poucke (148) w
2 w Matt Stemp (e165) 1 0 Bill Norman (131) b
3 b Aleksander Orava (e155) 1 0 Steven Marshall (115) w
4 w Nathan Barnes (146) 1 0 Sid McDonald (79) b
(avg=162) 3.5 0.5 (avg=118)

The D team won their second match of the season. Simon Denney made his debut for the club - playing on board 1. Birthday-boy John Duff-Cole drew his match against a higher-graded opponent. Mohammud Jaufarally continued his 100% record so far this season with a win on board 4 and Ed Goodman was the star - winning the decisive point with a well-played game on board 3.

Date: Oct-2014
NECL Division 3
1 b Doug Mothershaw (114) 1 0 Simon Denney (115) w
2 w Frank Sealey (99) ½ ½ John Duff-Cole (90) b
3 b Toby Pugh (75) 0 1 Ed Goodman (71) w
4 w William Pugh (70) 0 1 Mohammud Jaufarally (e70) b
(avg=89) 1.5 2.5 (avg=86)


Next week the D team have an away match against Chelmsford C.

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Tony Locke Rapidplay - Round 3 Pairings

The draw for round three has been made (first named player has white):

Mohammud Jaufarally (2)v    Nathan Barnes (1)
Clive Bellinger (1)v    Martin Harris (1)
Dave Chatfield (1)v    Svein Kjenner
Phil Daley (0)v    Shazia Jaufarally
John Kingv    John Duff-Cole (0)
Ed Goodman (1)v    Zahra Jaufarally
Mark Johnsonv    Nadia Jaufarally
Alex Welgev    Luke Tatchell (1)
Pete Smith (0) - Bye (or plays against 1st extra player added to draw)

Where first and second round games have not been played both players have been given half a point for the purpose of making the 3rd round draw - when the games have been played both player's scores will be updated. These half-points are not shown in player scores above.

The following games from earlier rounds still need to be played:

Martin Harrisv    Svein Kjenner
Mark Johnsonv    Shazia Jaufarally
Alex Welgev    Nadia Jaufarally
John Kingv    Zahra Jaufarally
Nathan Barnesv    Dave Chatfield
Svein Kjennerv    Clive Bellinger
John Duff-Colev    Phil Daley
Zahra Jaufarallyv    Mark Johnson
Nadia Jaufarallyv    John King
Shazia Jaufarallyv    Alex Welge

So far Mo is the only player to have played and won two matches, there are a number of players who have won one match and not played their second match yet.

Rules: 30 minutes on the clock for each player. These games should be played during November - no set date has been specified due to the number of NECL games due to be played this month - players should fit in games when they can. The draw for the 4th round will be published on the 3rd January.

Sunday, 26 October 2014

Two Clacton matches, two narrow wins

The C team beat Clacton C in their most recent match, by the narrow margin of 2.5-1.5. This was the C team's first win of the season (having lost to the D team earlier in the month). The A team maintained their place at the top of Division 2 by beating Clacton B - by the same scoreline. Matt Stemp made his Colchester debut in the A team match.

Date: Oct-2014
NECL Division 2
1 w Matt Stemp (e165) 0 1 John Lambert (132) b
2 b Aleksander Orava (e155) 1 0 Melvin Steele (123) w
3 w Nathan Barnes (146) 1 0 Mike Coughtrey (120) b
4 b Mike Wagstaff (147) ½ ½ Nigel Lake (87) w
(avg=153) 2.5 1.5 (avg=115)


Date: Oct-2014
NECL Division 3
1 w Andrew Todd (116) ½ ½ Pete Smith (123) b
2 b Nigel Lake (87) 0 1 Martin Harris (120) w
3 w Alan Story (72) 0 1 Mohammud Jaufarally (e70) b
4 b Warwick Eastlea (80) 1 0 Shazia Jaufarally (e55) w
(avg=88) 1.5 2.5 (avg=92)


Next week the A team have a match against Wethersfield and the D team are playing Maldon C.

Sunday, 19 October 2014

NECL Knockout Round 1

In the first round of the knockout Colchester played their 3rd match against a Division 1 team in the last two seasons. The result was a draw (again), but this time Colchester were eliminated on board count and go into the plate competition. Mike Wagstaff won in his first match of the season; Nathan and Martin both drew against higher-graded players. Martin stepped in to play at the last minute following a player dropping out ill, allowing Colchester to avoid defaulting on one board.

Date: Oct-2014
NECL Knockout: Round 1
1 w Eddie Banks (149) 1 0 Ian Gooding (185) b
2 b Peter Byford (148) ½ ½ Nathan Barnes (146) w
3 w Adrian Billingsley (140) 0 1 Mike Wagstaff (147) b
4 b Kenn Butcher (139) ½ ½ Martin Harris (120) w
(avg=144) 2 2 (avg=149)


The first match in the plate competition will be in the week beginning 10th November.

Sunday, 12 October 2014

Junior club news

Colchester Junior Chess Club has had a successful start - healthy numbers of juniors attended in week one, and this increased by 50% in week two. In the first week England U16 international Adam Taylor (just back from the World Youth Chess Championship in South Africa) gave some lessons and a demonstration of blindfold chess.

The club meets on Thursdays, 16:30-18:30. Anyone interested in joining should check out the Facebook page ‘Colchester Junior Chess Club’ or text your interest to 07786 326 927.

D team beat C team

In the second Colchester match of the NECL season an upset saw the D team beat the C team. Mohammud Jaufarally and Shazia Jaufarally both beat higher-graded opponents on their debuts for the club, Mark Johnson won a neat endgame against Martin Harris and Ed Goodman defended well against Clive Bellinger but Clive won material in the endgame and was able to convert - getting the C team on the scoreboard.

Date: Oct-2014
NECL League: Division 3
1 w Clive Bellinger (139) 1 0 Ed Goodman (71) b
2 b Pete Smith (123) 0 1 Mohammud Jaufarally (e70) w
3 w Martin Harris (120) 0 1 Mark Johnson (69) b
4 b Brian Remmer (110) 0 1 Shazia Jaufarally (e55) w
(avg=123) 1 3 (avg=66)


The next match is the first round of the knockout competition - Colchester A will be aiming to beat a division 1 team for the second season in a row.

Saturday, 4 October 2014

First NECL match of season

The NECL season has started with a win, and a loss, for Colchester teams - the newly-promoted B team had a match against the A team. The A team won 4-0, though the individual matches were mostly closer than the overall score line suggests. Svein Kjenner made his competitive debut for the club, with a win against Brian Remmer.

Date: 01-Oct-2014
NECL League: Division 2
1 w Ian Gooding (185) 1 0 Pete Smith (123) b
2 b Nathan Barnes (146) 1 0 Martin Harris (120) w
3 w Svein Kjenner (e139) 1 0 Brian Remmer (110) b
4 b Phil Daley (123) 1 0 John Duff-Cole (90) w
(avg=148) 4 0 (avg=110)


Not all the fixtures for the season are set yet, but the next match will see Colchester C play the newly-formed Colchester D team.

Sunday, 28 September 2014

Colchester Junior Chess Club

A new Colchester Junior Chess Club is starting up. The first session will be on Thursday 2/10/2014 between 4.30 and 6.30pm. All welcome!

The club's main aim is to promote chess among 5 to 18 years old in Colchester, members can learn and play chess in a friendly atmosphere.

It's at the Kingswode Hoe School, Sussex Road, CO3 3QJ.

Parents are welcome to wait or help out and there are free teas, coffees, biscuits, WiFi and parking available.

It's a Not For Profit Club and there is a small fee to cover the running expenses and ongoing developments. Donations are also welcome. The club already has a Facebook page.

Tony Locke Rapidplay - Round 2 Draw

The draw for round two has been made (first named player has white):

Nathan Barnes (1)v    Dave Chatfield (1)
Svein Kjennerv    Clive Bellinger (1)
Pete Smith (0)v    Martin Harris
John Duff-Cole (0)v    Phil Daley (0)
Mohammud Jaufarally (1)v    Ed Goodman (1)
Zahra Jaufarallyv    Mark Johnson
Nadia Jaufarallyv    John King
Shazia Jaufarallyv    Alex Welge
Luke Tatchell (0) - Bye (or plays against 1st extra player added to draw)

Where first round games have not been played both players have been given half a point for the purpose of making the 2nd round draw - when the game has been played both player's scores will be updated. These half-points are not shown in player scores above.

The following first round games still need to be played:

Martin Harrisv    Svein Kjenner
Mark Johnsonv    Shazia Jaufarally
Alex Welgev    Nadia Jaufarally
John Kingv    Zahra Jaufarally

So far the first round has seen wins for Nathan, Clive, Dave and Mo.

Rules: 30 minutes on the clock for each player. These games should be played during October - no set date has been specified due to the number of NECL games due to be played this month - players should fit in games when they can. The draw for the 3rd round will be published on the 1st November.

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Essex U135 rapidplay

Three Colchester players entered the Essex U135 rapidplay - and all did well. Mark Johnson, in his first chess tournament, finished in joint 2nd with a score of 4 out of 6. Mohammud Jaufarally came joint 5th with a score of 3.5 out of 6. Nadia Jaufarally, one of the lowest graded and youngest players, finished on a score of 2 out of 6.

Sunday, 14 September 2014

Martin Harris at Paignton

Martin Harris had strong results in two tournaments at the Paignton Chess Congress. He came joint 2nd in the U-130 morning competition and 4th in the U-130 afternoon competition (picking up the grading prize). Below he has annotated three of his wins from these competitions.

Martin at Paignton
[Event "Paignton 2014"] [Site "?"] [Date "2014.09.04"] [Round "?"] [White "Harris, M"] [Black "Carnie, E"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "C53"] [PlyCount "31"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 {I'd played a lot of slow strategic games at the tournament so far. Even the previous 4 games with white and I played the Smith Morra, three of my opponents played the slow d3 on move 3, avoiding all the juicy traps and complications. I still won all those three (and the other one) - 3 d3 is after all a bad move. But I was tired of the long games so I wanted something a little more fiery to revive my interest. I thought of the Halloween Gambit but felt it was too risky so I decided to just freelance with moves that I have never played or practised before.} exd4 4. c3 Bc5 {Obviously my opponent was out of his depth as well. But this was just a bad move by any strategic consideration as it gives me a strong centre with initiative.} 5. cxd4 Bb4+ 6. Nc3 {Bd2 was arguably better but I was willing to consign the queen knight to history so as to get a strong dark square bishop into play. It was also unlikely that my opponent would swap the piece any time soon as it was too early to tell if it was a worthwhile sacifice.} d6 {I was happy with this move as my opponent's dark bishop would remain away from the king. d5 was probably the best in the position to make best use of the pin on my knight while it was still possible.} 7. Bc4 {I wasn't interested in positional moves like Bd2 or d5. I wanted 19th century style play to cheer me up.} Nge7 $2 {My opponent certainly gave me what I wanted! I thought for 45 minutes working out all sorts of gory sacrifices that didn't quite work before settling on my next move. And pretty much all my following moves were adjudged the best in the position by the tactical Fritz12 afterwards so I was quite pleased with myself.} 8. Ng5 d5 9. exd5 Bxc3+ 10. bxc3 Nxd5 11. O-O O-O 12. Qh5 Bf5 (12... Nf6 13. Bxf7+ Kh8 14. Qh4 h6 15. Ba3) 13. Qf3 Nce7 14. Ba3 c6 $2 {A blunder. But working out all the other possibilities was obviously telling on my opponent. Bg6 was probably the only move that gave any kind of stability to Black's position.} 15. Bxd5 cxd5 (15...Qxd5 (15... Nxd5 16. Qxf5) 16. Bxe7) 16. Bxe7 Qxe7 17. Qxf5 {Black decided to hand in the towel. He said that not taking on c3 was his mistake but it was really Bc5 giving me a tempo and strong centre and his weak defensive move Ne7 that did it.} 1-0 [Event "Paignton 2014"] [Site "?"] [Date "2014.09.01"] [Round "?"] [White "Harris, M"] [Black "Jones, R"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B21"] [PlyCount "79"] 1. e4 c5 2. d4 cxd4 3. c3 d3 {One of the three where this was played. I've had it often before at the level I play at. People just don't like the early complications and fine strategic play of the Smith Morra. So they go for stodge instead. However, what they get is a Maroczy Bind. Esserman says in this kind of position try to avoid swapping pieces and just keep cramping the opponent until he lashes out wildly and then you kill him. I won't make too many comments on the game. Just so you can see how it cooks.} 4. Bxd3 Nc6 5. c4 d6 6. Nc3 Nf6 7. Nf3 g6 8. O-O Bg7 9. h3 {This move is necessary before playing Be3 to stop the opponents knight wreaking havoc.} O-O 10. Be3 b6 11. Rc1 Bb7 12. Bb1 Rc8 13. Qe2 Nd7 14. Rfd1 Nce5 15. Nxe5 Nxe5 16. b3 Nc6 17. Nd5 Nb8 18. Nc3 a6 19. f4 Qc7 20. Nd5 Bxd5 21. exd5 {Better than cxd as it opens up the line for my bishop. Blacks heavy pieces are beginning to concentrate on his queen side, which suggests an attack on the king eventually. It happens slowly without any fireworks or fuss.} Nd7 22. Qf2 a5 23. Re1 Nc5 24. Qh4 Rfe8 25. f5 Bf6 26. Qg3 Kg7 27. h4 h5 $2 28. Qf4 Rh8 29. Bd4 Bxd4+ 30. Qxd4+ Kh7 $2 31. Rc3 Rhg8 32. Rce3 {That was sneaky of me wasn't it! I kept my eyes on the king side all that while and then attacked a centre weakness instead of pursuing the attack.} Rce8 $2 33. Qf4 Rg7 $2 34. Qg5 $6 (34. fxg6+ fxg6 35. Bxg6+ Kg8 (35... Kxg6 36. Qg5+ Kf7 37. Qxh5+ Kg8 (37... Kf8 38. Qh8+ Kf7 39. Rf1+ Kg6 40. Rg3#) 38. Qxe8+) 36. Bxe8) 34... f6 $2 35. fxg6+ Kg8 36. Qxh5 Nd7 37. Bf5 Nf8 38. Qg4 Qc5 39. h5 e6 40. dxe6 {The time control gave black his cue to go no further. The h pawn cannot now be stopped and the rook is trapped.} 1-0 [Event "Paignton 2014"] [Site "?"] [Date "2014.09.05"] [Round "?"] [White "Farrell, J"] [Black "Harris, M"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "A01"] [PlyCount "58"] 1. b3 c5 2. Bb2 Nc6 3. e3 e5 {I had played black against my opponent (grade 126) only a couple of days before in the morning tournament and we played out a draw after both making mistakes in a slow positional game. Not my style. Also as this was the penultimate round of the minor proper, I needed the points. I already knew of the opening from Igor Smirnov so I did some research in Fritz12 to see how I could avoid the slow death by draw permutation.By the way, I hope you don't mind me being verbose here. When else do I get the chance?} 4. Bb5 Nf6 5. Bxc6 dxc6 6. Bxe5 {What turned out what nothing like I imagined, however, I felt good being a pawn down in an open position where I was obviously going to have a game with a bishop against a knight and two good rooks in the centre. The computer seems to agree. It only gives a .3 disadvantage to black here so it seems quite a dynamic position. My plan was the old simple idea to put pressure on until the complications get the better of him.} Qd5 7. Nf3 Ng4 8. Nc3 Qe6 9. Bg3 Bd6 10. Bxd6 Qxd6 11. h3 Qh6 {Not ideal but I was not interested in positional play and I wanted to keep surprising him so as to unnerve him.} 12. Ne4 b6 13. Ke2 {His first mistake. Probably he was petrified of castling, with the possibility of being subjected to a strong attack. But castling was better. With the king in the open, my rooks are just itching to get moving.} Nf6 14. Nxf6+ Qxf6 15. d3 Bf5 {I thought ages over this. I was trying to draw him out with an overstretching pawn advance. I had to get castled queen side even though the computer wanted to go the other direction and Be6 would only block the rooks.} 16. Re1 O-O-O 17. Kf1 {You can run but you can't hide.I've got some nice possibilities with pins on both queen and king here. It's not the action but the threat that wins, as they say.} Rhe8 18. Qc1 {Bingo! Got him.Worried about his queen, he misses the obvious. Now my pawn is won back and I have all the benefits of the position as well.} Bxh3 19. Ng1 Bg4 20. a4 {At this point I had to justify my positional advantages tactically so I spent a long time concocting a plan and analysing where his weaknesses really were. In the meantime, he seemed oblivious of any danger looming as I massed my pieces for a hopefully glorious sacrifical attack.} Rd5 21. f3 Rde5 {The threat is to win the a rook after a swap on e3. Again, I probably wouldn't have followed through with that because winning an extra pawn didn't seem to do much with queens still on board. But I did this anyway to lure his pawns further.} 22. e4 Bd7 {I really did this for psychological reasons. I thought I probably couldn't maintain the bishop there so I put it where it wouldn't be noticed, giving my king some comfort. But I knew in the long plan I was working on that it would play a big role later. My opponent afterwards said that it was his mistake to forget about the bishop. So my psychology worked!} 23. Qe3 Rh5 24. Qd2 {He must have changed his mind. He wanted to get his own counterplay. But he totally misunderstood how strong my attack was.} Rh1 25. c3 Re5 26. b4 $2 Rg5 27. bxc5 $4 {I'm losing a lot of pawns here for the sake of an idea. Great fun!} Bh3 $1 28. Re2 {If the bishop is taken, the queen will be lost.} Qxf3+ {But now, it's the king that will be lost.} 29. Rf2 Bxg2+ 0-1

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Tony Locke Rapidplay Draw

This year, the Tony Locke Rapidplay will be a 7-round accelerated swiss competition with one round taking place each month between September and April (except December). The draw for round one is below, additional players may be added to this draw over the next few weeks (eg new members, student members). First named player has the white pieces.

Phil Daleyv    Nathan Barnes
Clive Bellingerv    Pete Smith
Martin Harrisv    Svein Kjenner
Dave Chatfieldv    John Duff-Cole
Luke Tatchellv    Mohammud Jaufarally
Mark Johnsonv    Shazia Jaufarally
Alex Welgev    Nadia Jaufarally
John Kingv    Zahra Jaufarally
Ed Goodman - Bye (or plays against 1st extra player added to draw)

30 minutes on the clock for each player. The club night on the 17th September is allocated for these games - though players may agree to play the match on an alternative night if preferred. The draw for the 2nd round will be published on the 1st October.

Club Championship 2014/15

The format for this year's club championship has changed slightly - though there will still be a group phase followed by a knockout format. Players have been divided into groups (randomly from seeded pots). The winners of each group will get byes for the first and second rounds of the knockout; those who finish in 2nd place in their group will get a bye for the first round of the knockout. The draw for the knockout rounds will be determined by grade performance in the group stages. Where additional byes need to be given out (due to numbers) the eligible player with the best grading performance will be given it.

SeedGroup 1Group 2Group 3Group 4Group 5
1Nathan BarnesClive BellingerSvein KjennerDave ChatfieldPhil Daley
2Ed GoodmanJohn Duff-ColePete SmithBrian RemmerMartin Harris
3Mohammud JaufarallyNadia JaufarallyJohn KingShazia JaufarallyMark Johnson

Colours for the matches are as follows: Player 1 has white against Player 3, Player 2 has white against Player 1, Player 3 has white against Player 2.

Once dates for NECL fixtures are known, dates will be published for the club championship games - however, matches can be started before then if the two players agree a date. All matches in the group stages must be finished by Wednesday 3rd December.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

A game from the past

Below is a game played in 1957 - a match between Colchester and Ipswich from the Border League. Dr Kellerman, representing Colchester, has the white pieces.

A game from the past
[Event "Colchester v Ipswich, Border League"] [Site "Colchester"] [Date "1957.11.25"] [Round "?"] [White "Kellerman, Dr"] [Black "Smith, M. C."] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "E24"] {E24: Nimzo-Indian: Sämisch: Unusual Black 5th moves and 5...c5 sidelines} 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. a3 Bxc3+ 5. bxc3 d6 6. Bg5 Nbd7 7. f3 {Controls e4 and g4} O-O 8. e4 e5 9. Bd3 c6 10. Ne2 h6 11. Bd2 Re8 12. O-O Nf8 13. Qc2 Ne6 14. d5 Nc5 15. f4 $2 {White has two bishops pointing at the kingside and so is looking to open up the position - but the timing of this move is wrong.} exf4 $17 16. Rxf4 (16. Bxf4 Nfxe4 17. Bxe4 Nxe4 $17) 16... Nxd3 (16... Ng4 { looks better} 17. Raf1 g5 18. R4f3 Ne5 {and Black is winning material}) 17. Qxd3 g5 18. Rff1 Nxe4 19. Qf3 (19. Ng3 Nxg3 20. Qxg3 cxd5 21. cxd5 b5 $11) 19... f5 (19... Nxd2 $4 {Black should leave the bishop alone} 20. Qxf7+ Kh8 21. Rf6 Qxf6 22. Qxf6+ Kg8 23. Qg6+ Kf8 24. Qxh6+ Kf7 25. Nd4 $18 ) 20. Be3 c5 21. Qh5 (21. Ng3 $142 Nxg3 22. Qxg3 $17) 21... Nf6 $2 {gives the opponent counterplay} (21... Re7 $142 $19 {Black clearly has the better chances }) 22. Qg6+ {Fine, but Qxh6 is slightly better} Kf8 $4 {Should be the losing blunder} (22... Kh8 23. Rf3 Nh7 $14 {keeps Black in the game}) 23. Qxh6+ $2 { White has a clear advantage, but this does not take full advantage of Black's blunder} (23. Ng3 $142 {and White wins} Qe7 24. Nxf5 Bxf5 25. Rxf5 $18) 23... Kf7 $16 24. Qxg5 Rg8 $2 (24... Qe7 $142 $5 25. Rf3 Rg8 $14) 25. Qf4 $16 Rg4 26. Qf2 {White hasn't taken advantage of Black's error - Black's king is exposed but White is also vunerable.} Ne4 $14 27. Qf3 Ng5 $4 {Diagram [#] Black gives White another chance to win} 28. Qxg4 $18 {Black resigns} 1-0

Friday, 25 July 2014

New ECF grades

The July 2014 ECF Grading List has been published. The grades for active Colchester players are:

140673FBarnes, Nathan146D
250046CBellinger, Clive139D139D
155695CDaley, Philip123C124D
227455DDuff-Cole, John90B90B
292991AGlenn, Samuel121E121E
139627EGooding, Ian185C176C
256466LGoodman, Ed71C77D
150405JHarris, Martin120A139D89E
283272AHarris, Peter1669E57E52E
297586FJaufarally, Nadia1080D
297619FJaufarally, Shazia1371E
293018DJohnson, Mark69D49E
286563EKing, John26E26D
292992CKolomvas, Dimitrios158E158E
295637JLachinov, Eldar198D
117812LRemmer, Brian110D109E
213710ASmith, Pete123C122B113E113E
120924DWagstaff, Michael147D145D
295877GWelge, Alex1134D
290797FWood, David19A21A43A38A

There are also a number of other Colchester players - like Javier Ruano Marco, Aleksandr Orava, Mohammud Jaufarally, Rob Smith, Jake Stones and Luke Tatchell - who have played some graded games in the last season (but not enough to have a grade yet).

Several players appear on the list for the first time: Eldar Lachinov, Nadia Jaufarally, Shazia Jaufarally and Alex Welge.

A number of players have increased their grades - with Mark Johnson (+20) and Ian Gooding (+9) both improving their grade by a large margin. Ian scored 4/6 in NECL matches this year and 6.5/9 in the 4NCL (Four Nations Chess League) where he plays for Cambridge University. Below is a minature won by Ian in the 4NCL earlier this year.

Saturday, 19 July 2014

Recent tournament results

Some of the club's junior members have been taking part in a few competitions in the last month and achieved good results.

  • 7th Nadia Jaufarally 4/6 - Saffron Walden Junior U11 Section
  • 10th Shazia Jaufarally 2/6 - Saffron Walden Junior U18 Minor Section
  • 5th Nadia Jaufarally 4.5/6 - Delancey UK Schools Chess Challenge – Southern Gigafinal U10 Girls
  • 9th Shazia Jaufarally 3/6 - Delancey UK Schools Chess Challenge – Southern Gigafinal U13 Girls
  • 30th Tor Leijon 2/6 - Delancey UK Schools Chess Challenge – Southern Gigafinal U8 Boys "B"
  • Nadia Jaufarally 3.5/5 - UKI Girls Chess Championship U10 (1/2 a point behind the winner)
  • Shazia Jaufarally 2.5/5 - UKI Girls Chess Championship U13

If I have missed anyone out please let me know!

Colchester Junior Chess Tournament

Several Colchester Chess Club members took part in this tournament, part of the Essex Junior Grand Prix.

In the Under 18 Minor event Shazia Jaufarally won the grading prize for the best performance by an ungraded player with a score of 3/6, finishing in 6th place. Luke Tatchell came 16th in this event - he was one of the youngest competitors in this section.

In the Under 11 section, Alex Welge scored 3 out of 6 to finish in 15th and Nadia Jaufarally scored 4 out of 6 to finish in 6th. Nadia won the prize for best newcomer (for a player in their first Essex Junior Grand Prix event).

Sunday, 6 July 2014

Club Grand Prix

22 players took park in the Colchester Chess Club Grand Prix - points are awarded for results in the club championship, Tony Locke Rapidplay and NECL matches. The top ten players this season were:

1stEldar Lachinov (ungraded)21.5
2ndNathan Barnes (ungraded)18.5
3rdMartin Harris (139)12
4thPeter Smith (122)11
5thBrian Remmer (109)10.5
6thMark Johnson (49)9.5
7th=Phil Daley (124)9
 John Duff-Cole (90)9
9thMike Wagstaff (145)8.5
10thClive Bellinger (139)6.5

Saturday, 21 June 2014

Club Championship - part 3

The final of the club championship was between two players taking part in the event for the first time - Eldar and Nathan. During the game both players held the advantage at different stages but Eldar managed to win - maintaining his unbeaten season.

In the game (shown below) Black obtained a strong, probably winning, advantage in the opening but White slowly equalised as the game went on. Two inaccurate moves by Black let White go into a won endgame. Black made winning the endgame tricky but accurate play from White avoided any chance of Black snatching the draw.

The top 8 in the club championship were (19 players took part):

1stEldar Lachinov (ungraded)
2ndNathan Barnes (ungraded)
3rdMark Johnson (49)
4thBrian Remmer (109)
5thMartin Harris (139)
6th=Phil Daley (124)
6th=Pete Smith (122)
8thJohn Duff-Cole (90)

Friday, 20 June 2014

Club Championship - part 2

The 3rd place play-off was also the decider for the Club Shield (awarded to the under-120 graded player with the best result in the club championship). In the game, Mark showed that he knew how to handle Brian's Grob Attack and a well-timed attack by the central pawns led to a decisive material advantage.

The top 3 in the club shield were:

1stMark Johnson (49)
2ndBrian Remmer (109)
3rdJohn Duff-Cole (90)

Sunday, 15 June 2014

Club championship - part 1

Overall, 19 players entered the club championship this year - this is significantly higher than in recent years. The play-offs for places 5-8 in the club championship have been completed and the results are shown below.

5thMartin Harris (139)
6th=Phil Daley (124)
6th=Pete Smith (122)
8thJohn Duff-Cole (90)

Phil and Pete proved impossible to split - below is the first of the draws in the games between them. The advantage keeps switching back and forward after a speculative sacrifice from Black.

The top four in the plate competition were:

1st=Clive Bellinger (139)
1st=Dave Chatfield (ungraded)
3rdEd Goodman (72)
4thJohn King (26)

Saturday, 14 June 2014


The Colchester Chess Club Annual General Meeting will be on Wednesday 25th June at 19:30. If you are interested in taking on one of the roles in the club committee, or want to find out more about what the roles entail, please speak to Clive. The committee positions are:

  • President
  • Secretary
  • Treasurer
  • Match Secretary
  • A Team Captain
  • B Team Captain
  • C Team Captain
  • Tournament Secretary

Presentations will also be made to the winners of the 2013/14 season club competitions.

Saturday, 17 May 2014

Final NECL matches of the season

The A and C teams have had their final matches of the season - both postponed from the end of April. The C team drew 2-2 with CRGS, finishing 3rd in their division. The A team completed their 4th 4-0 whitewash in a row against Baddow B; the A team also finished 3rd in their division.

Date: 14-May-2014
NECL League: Division 2
1 b Ian Gooding (176) 1 0 Richard Parker (148) w
2 w Eldar Lachinov (e155) 1 0 Michael Spurr (151) b
3 b Nathan Barnes (e145) 1 0 Tony Rawlins (88) w
4 w Phil Daley (124) 1 0 David Gold (76) b
(avg=150) 4 0 (avg=115)


Date: 14-May-2014
NECL League: Division 3
1 b Martin Harris (139) ½ ½ Gorak Rajesh (161) w
2 w Brian Remmer (109) 0 1 Jeremy Hadcock (140) b
3 b John Duff-Cole (90) 1 0 Peter Harris (57) w
4 w Mark Johnson (49) ½ ½ Lakdinu Peries (68) b
(avg=96) 2 2 (avg=106)


Here is Eldar's game from the match against Baddow. A kingside pawn-storm leads to a well-calculated finish in the endgame.