Double completed over Letchworth

3 matches on the Road in January, but at least the near 50 mile round trip to Letchworth brought back the spoils – 2 more valuable points.

Boards 1 and 5 both saw the Dutch defence from Black. Terry built up a nice centre, but agreed a draw in the middle game. Adam on top board faced a Classical Dutch. He gained more space and eventually won the exchange (see earlyish position on a historic club prize board below). Kevin had decent Queen side counterplay playing the Kings Indian, and a draw was agreed in the endgame.Adjudication on Board 4, with Malcolm gaining a pawn from a nice combination, and reaching position below as white.  Anthony debuted the Black Lion, which purred rather than roared. Black took a chance opening up the kingside while delaying castling. A small plus built up in position shown below, but time was pressing for both players, and White went 23. Na4? which lost out to b5 forking Knight and Queen. So, black eventually won.

Herts CA : Herts League – Division 3    Monday 23-January-2017
Letchworth & Hitchin 2                      Borehamwood
Board  1 : Ball, Anthony J                   164   0-1   Raoof, Adam N                  192
Board  2 : Mutton, Ian                        155   0-1     Kent, Anthony R              153
Board  3 : Burrows, Anthony G        153   A-A   Gesthuysen, Malcolm    132
Board  4 : Coates, Tom                       123   1/2      Sear, Kevin                        132
Board  5 : Collis, Leon                        66   1/2        O’Sullivan, Terry J           121
Match Score :                                           1 – 3

4 wins, 3 draws and 1 defeat last week see us with 11 points after 8 matches. Enough to sit top of the league, but played more matches than everyone else.

The promised pictures: Dutch on board 1, Board 4 close of play, Board 2 before Na4




Joy along the A414 to Hertford

The run continues. Half-way  into a 12 match season, and we remain undefeated. No chicken counting or Asti Spumante Martinis, but ahead of modest pre-season expectations. So on the first working day of 2017, we went up the A1, and across on the A414 to Hertford. Easily found parking spaces on a mild quiet evening, and battle commenced.

Terry got us of to good start with a Queens Gambit declined, winning a pawn early on and never looking back. Malcolm also had a useful Queens Gambit declined, and offered a Greek gift on black’s castled king-side which was wisely declined. Black countered on the queen-side, won material, and soon it was one apiece.

An interesting encounter on top board started 1. d4 h6  . Adam with White built up a stonewall set-up, and castled king-side. Black opted to pawn storm the white fortress together with diagonal threats from queen and bishop. Lots of mating threats by black, but each time white to move could thwart black’s threats. Eventually central pressure on White’s uncastled king told, and white took the point.

Anthony played a Dragadorf Sicilian with Black, developing the queen-side before castling. After 19…d5 (see below), white went 20. fxe. White should have responded ..Nxe4 rather than ..Qxe for a decent advantage. After a few more thrills and spills and some less than accurate moves on both sides, a draw was agreed as time was short.


Kevin drew on board 4, thwarting white’s efforts to queen a pawn, so we won 2 – 3.

Hertfordshire Chess League: Division 3.  03-January-2016

Hertford 2
Simon  Morris
Adam Raoof
Andrew Du Boulay
Anthony Kent
Nick Wooster
Malcolm Gesthuysen
Corinne Mountford
Kevin Sear
Alan Hutton
Terry O’Sullivan

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