Who needs Black, anyway?

21st February 2017 - Downend D vs Cabot A

After our last outing, at Keynsham, when we won all the even boards with Black, we thought we would have a change of tack last night and try to win the even boards with White.

First to accomplish this goal was Nigel, whose pieces were soon swarming all over the place. All the other games were balanced, although it looked like Alex, by some distance the strongest player in the division, was looking to exact revenge for the half point that James had the temerity to take off him in our previous match with Cabot.

Next to finish were the middle boards, which I didn't see too much of before they were all over. A win and a draw for, respectively, Dave and Neil. Although material was level in Dave's game, his rooks were looking threatening and his pieces were generally better placed. At the risk of applying the commentator's curse, that puts him on 86%, just a whisker behind the club leader.

So, with 2½ points in the bag I was happy enough to convert a promising attacking position against the castled King to clinch the match. James finally succumbed but not before giving Alex a real struggle for the whole point. Oli reached a position where he claimed a draw under the two minute rule and we shall have to wait and see how that turns out but it won't affect the match result.

So the cunning even board plan worked again and we find ourselves in a strong position for promotion, by my reckoning six points ahead of the third placed team with a game in hand. Who needs Black, anyway!

Ian Pickup