North Circular Chess League Division B
Wanstead House, 8th December 2016
Result: WANSTEAD 3 2-3 ILFORD
146 KEITH JONES ½ NEVILLE TWITCHELL 173 w
134 CHARTON SIDDO 0-1 ANTHONY KENT 153 b
130 JOHN KEEHNER 1-0 SYD KALINSKY 148
105 JOHN JESTICO ½ JEF PAGE 130
95 NIGEL WHITE 0-1 HOWARD BERLIN 127
Not our greatest victory, given our grading advantage on all boards. However, this pleasing win against our local rivals puts us into 2nd place chasing the leaders, Chingford, whom we face in a week’s time. We have done the ‘double’ over Wanstead having beaten them by the same score just a month ago. Admittedly, on this occasion they were playing another match on the same night, which probably ruled out one or two of their stronger eligible players.
Howard Berlin outplayed Nigel White in the opening. He quickly won a knight and easily cleaned up the endgame. This gave us an early advantage which we never let go, but from here on it was much harder. Keith Jones defended really well to stay level in the endgame and secure his half against Neville’s favourite sharp opening (too secret to reveal here). Jef set up an attack against John Jestico’s kingside, but did not follow it up sufficiently and Jestico levelled. Syd Kalinsky got little joy against John Keehner’s Sicilian, so the match result hinged on Anthony Kent’s game. We may be heading out of Europe through ‘Brexit’, but a multi Euro-wide opening was featured as he translated a Polish opening into a Leningrad Dutch defence. He aggressively established a strong, advanced pawn chain (See seasonal Christmas Tree formation below), picked off an under-protected Bishop, with a Queen checkmate to eventually follow.
Last match before Christmas, 19th December: Chingford v Ilford. This match effectively determines who will lead the division at the end of the year.