4NCL 2023-24 Rounds 7-8: Division 3B, 4 results

A lot of Oxford teams (2, 3, 4 to be exact) headed into Warwick to tackle several matches. We recorded these results:

  • Oxford 2 drew both matches 3-3 against SPTW Lionesses & Brown Jack;
  • Oxford 3 beat CSC/Kingston 3 3½-2½ then drew with Coventry;
  • Oxford 4 lost ½-5 to Apprentice Woodpushers then defeated SPTW Stars B 4-2.

Top marks to Richard, Alessandro and (ahem) skip all of whom recorded 2/2 over the weekend; Arthur, David W, Alex and Ian won their single games. Debutants Sebastian & Thomas both scored wins on board 1 of Oxford 2 (and lost on board 3).

The seconds are in mid-table of Div 3B on 7 points, not in any danger of being relegated for only two teams go down (from each Pool) and the bottom two teams are six points behind.

The thirds, after their shaky start to the season, are now in ninth place. The tricky thing at this stage is that the top teams are now looking towards teams as low as seventh or below as opponents for rounds 9-11. For this reason it could be a good thing that we “only” drew with Coventry in Round 8. Skip felt Phil had a zugzwang in his bishop endgame for the match-winning half-point, but he did well to miss it!

There was good endgame technique on view from Alex & Alessandro on Saturday, both exploiting different advantages. Alex‘s bishop totally dominated Black’s knight, while Alessandro‘s king became a super piece on d5 as Black’s king dozed on h7. With his Sunday game featuring a positional queen sac for domination and a later tactical finish, Alessandro was clearly Oxford’s “player of the weekend”.