Victory over Hertford! 9th March 1998
Report by T.Gavriel
I start to write this report a couple of hours after witnessing one of Barnet's best victories of the season in the Hertfordshire Chess League!
Historically, there has always seemed to be one dominant league team which Barnet would have to face consistent punishment from. Several years ago it was the very powerful Wood Green Chess club. Despite Barnet chess club have the likes of IM Neil Bradbury, Jeremy Sharp, Chris Jones, Howard Tebbs, Hugh Murphy, and Paul Georghiou, Barnet was still consistently toppled by Wood Green in the North Circular League. Wood Green had a team comprising of several IMs- if they wanted to beat us, they could put Andrew Martin, Paul Littlewood, Peter Sowray, Graham Lee, David Friedgood, Malcolm Pein. This was several years ago now, but I remember my club having very powerful players.
The modern dominant League team in the Hertordshire League is undoubtedly Hertord who have won the league for three consecutive seasons. Tonight Hertford have lost to Barnet 4-1. I cannot put into words the sense of elation and pride that I feel at this moment of writing. I have been a member of Barnet chess club for several years now, and it is with great pride that the following games are illustrated:-
White: Paul Georghiou (197)
Black: Hanreck (201)
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 Bb4+ 4.Bd2 Qe7 5.g3 Nc6 6.Nc3 0-0 7.Bg2 Bxc3 8.Bxc3 Ne4 9.Rc1 d6 10.d5 Nxc3 11.Rxc3 Nb8 12.dxe6 fxe6 13.0-0 a5 14.Nd4 Na6 15.f4 Nc5 16.Re3 Bd7 17.Nb3 draw agreed
Natasha Regan scored a fine revenge victory over S.Swanson after having been beaten by him the preceding Monday at their home ground in a cup game :-
White: Natasha Regan
Black: Steve Swanson
1.f4 g6 2.Nf3 Bg7 3.g3 Nf6 4.Bg2 0-0 5.0-0 d5 6.Qe1 c6 7.h3 Nbd7 8.g4 a5 9.Nc3 a4 10.Qh4 a3 11.bxa3 e6 12.Rb1 Nc5 13.Bb2 Nfe4 14.Nxe4 dxe4 15.Ng5 h6
On a casual observation of this position, I couldn't see what White was doing about the pin on g5. I completely missed Natasha's cunning resource which was coming up!
16.Bxg7 Kxg7 17.Qf2!
Qd5 18.c4 Qxd2 19.Qxc5 hxg5 20.Rbd1 Qc3 21.fxg5 Rxa3 22.Qe7 Ra5 23.Rd8 Qa3
Here I was really excited as I saw Natasha has Qxf7+! winning. However she did not play it -either here or later instead of Rfd1 !! A slower route to Rome was taken instead ! (Thank you John Saunders for pointing out this report comment was a move too early before- the queen hanged!!)
25.Rfd1 Bd7 26.R1xd7 Ra8 27.Rxf7
Post-game analysis picture
Natasha analyses with Steve Swanson. Paul looks on.
White: Paul Byway (196)
Black: Costas Karyianis (187)
The following was a very solid performance by Costas against his higher rated opponent.
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 g6 3.Bf4 Bg7 4.e3 0-0 5.h3 d6 6.c4 h6 7.Nc3 Nc6 8.d5 Nb8 9.e4 a5 10.Bd3 Na6 11.0-0 Nc5 12.Re1 e5 13.dxe6 Bxe6 14.Bf1 Re8 15.e5 dxe5 16.Bxe5 Nfd7 17.Bxg7 Kxg7 18.Nd4 Nb6 19.Nxe6+ Nxe6 20.Nd5 c6!
This critical move gets rid of White's annoying central knight. Kostas remarked to me that, although this looked like a mistake, it was not. The variation I believe he had in mind was Rxe6 Rxe6 Qd4+ when it looks as though white is picking up the knight on b6. However if Rxe6 Rxe6 Qd4+ f6, the white knight is now pinned, and if Qxb6, black simply plays cxd5.
21.Ne3 Qxd1 22.Rexd1 Red8 23.b3 Nd7 24.a3 Ne5 25.b4 Rxd1 26.Rxd1 axb4 27.axb4 Rd8 28.Rxd8 Nxd8 29.f4 Nd7 30.g3 b6 31.Bg2 f5 32.Kf2 Kf6 33.b5 cxb5 34.cxb5 Ke7 35.g4 fxg4 36.hxg4 Nf6 37.g5 hxg5 38.fxg5 Nh7 39.Nc4 Nxg5 40.Nxb6 Kd6 41.Nc8+ Kc7 42.Ne7 Kb6 43.Bf1 Ne4+ 44.Ke3 Nd6 1/2-1/2
White: Eddie Holland
Black: Barry Cheal
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.e5 Bf5 4.Nf3 e6 5.Be2 Nd7 6.0-0 Be7 7.b3 h5 8.c4 Nh6 9.Nc3 g5?!
Perhaps overly agressive play by Black. Barry told me after the game that his captain had wanted him to play for the attack! The weaknesses created as it turned out by events in the game, particularly the dark square weaknesses, are highlighted by white later.
10.Ne1 g4 11.cxd5 cxd5 12.a4 a6 13.Ba3!
With this exchange of bishops, the dark squares in blacks position, become slightly weaker.
Bxa3 14.Rxa3 Qe7 15.Ra1 Rc8 16.Na2 0-0 17.Qd2 Kg7 18.Nd3 Bg6 19.f3!
A powerful move, opening up the f file around blacks king.
gxf3 20.Rxf3 Nf5 21.Nf4 Rh8 22.Bd3?
This is a tactical blunder according to Fritz. Black could have simply taken on d4 here. eg: Rg3 Nxb3 Nxg6 Qc5+ Qf2 Qxf2+ Kxf2 Nxa1 Ne7 Kh6
Nh4 23.Rg3 Nf8 24.Nb4 Rh6 25.Rf1 Kh7
26.Nbxd5! exd5 27.Nxd5 Qe6 28.Nf6+ Kg7 29.Qg5
White has tremendous pressure and overwhelming compensation for the temporary knight sacrifice. Blacks knight on h4 is in immediate trouble.
Rc3 30.Bc4 Rxc4 31.bxc4 Nf5 32.Qxf5 Qxf5 33.Rxf5 h4 34.Rg4 Kh8 35.Rff4 h3 1-0
White: D.Fewell (178)
Black: Alex Ethelontis (178)
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 exd5
The most boring chess opening known to man. Otherwise known as the exchange french variation. Paul Georghiou claims he has never lost to his variation- in fact he has won anytime his opponents have played this against him. Alex is an experienced French player and could not have been too worried facing this variation.
4.Nd2 Bd6 5.Bd3 Nc6 6.c3 Nge7 7.Qc2 Bg4 8.Ndf3 Qd7 9.Bd2 Bf5 10.0-0-0 0-0-0
Both players are playing wildly!... They are castling queenside. Also there is not total symetry because there is no corresponding pawn on c6 to white's pawn on c3 :-)
11.Nh4 Bxd3 12.Qxd3 h6 13.Ne2 g5 14.Nf3 Ng6 15.h3 Nce7 16.g4 Rhf8 17.h4 f5!
An energetic thrust by Alex!
18.hxg5 fxg4 19.Nh4 Nxh4 20.Rxh4 hxg5 21.Bxg5 Rxf2 22.Rh7 Qe6 23.Ng3 Rf3 24.Qe2 Qg6 25.Bxe7 Re8
Sharp tactics by black. Despite being a piece down, many of white's pieces are simultaneously enprise.
26.Qc2 Qxc2+ 27.Kxc2 Rxe7 28.Rxe7 Bxe7 29.Rd3 Rf2+ 30.Rd2 Rf3 31.Rd3 Rf7 32.Kd1 Rf2 33.Rd2 Rf3 34.Rg2 Bd6 35.Ne2 g3 36.Ke1 Kd7 37.Ng1 Rf6 38.Ne2 Rg6 39.Kd2 Ke6 40.Ke3 Kf5 41.Kf3 Rg4
A surprising simplification. Perhaps white had had enough. This leads to a lost king and pawn ending for white.
Bxg3 43.Rxg3 Rxg3+ 44.Kxg3 Ke4 45.Kg4 c6 0-1
An aesthetic final position.
So there ends the tale of Hertford, the league leaders of the Hertfordshire League, losing 4-1 to Barnet. This will be a night to remember in the history of Barnet chess club and its successes in Division 1 of the Hertfordshire League.
In true Barnetonian chess club style, the victory was celebrated in the Moon Under The Water pub across the road in Barnet High street.