4NCL-O Round 6: results

All, these were our results from Round 6 just concluded. For the first time this season we achieved a clean sweep of wins. Our games have been gathered in here for your enjoyment, in board order as usual from top to bottom. 

Ox1‘s win puts daylight between us in 6th and Shropshire / Atticus A in 7th/8th of Group B, but we’re still 2 match points behind 5th-placed Gonzaga. Next up are Anglian Avengers 1 for whom Messrs Talsma & Lewis have a perfect record, 5/5 each.

Ox2 were flattered somewhat by the 3-1 scoreline. Andrejs scored an impressive win on top board but Sussex were pushing on all of the other boards. Chris & Sean put up the shutters successfully on 3 & 4 (skip thought Chris might have played a3 after move 38 in his K+P endgame purely for aesthetic reasons, not because it’s any good), while Edgar was the beneficiary of a huge time-trouble blunder by his oppo.

Ox3‘s win puts them well into the top-of-the-group-D mix on 7, joint-second with Downend 2 and (probably) Harrow 3 as I write.  It came down to Dimitrios’s game and his speculative “all-in” piece sac caused his opponent to go wrong.

“Normal” service was resumed in Ox4 as we posted our third 4-0 scoreline in four – this is good for our goal difference. Sam set the ball rolling super-quickly before your skip had settled in to viewing mode: “an example of what not to do in this opening on the Black side”, he says. Tashika won a strange endgame: at one point her K+B were stuck in the corner while all White’s pieces were active, but later White contrived to clump all his pieces in the corner as the bishop woke up in time to support her passed h-pawn.

4NCL-O Round 5: results

All, these were our results from Round 5 just concluded:

It was a good night for the first team and a very good night for the thirds. The fourth team wangled a draw after  we suffered a no-show on one of the boards: the extra game-point penalty means that match finishes all-square, Wigston 2’s FOURTH draw of the season.

Our games have been gathered in here, in board order as usual from top to bottom. Some highlights / comments:

  • Arya & Kenneth’s wins demonstrated in different ways the power of doubled rooks on the seventh.
  • Arya’s seen the final position in K’s game earlier this season.
  • Dimitrios won a worse K+P endgame (move 30) – skip thinks. Black seemed to be ahead in most races. Skip could be wrong, he hasn’t applied the engine to it. Did Black choose the wrong race? 
  • Well done to Andrejs who survived a pre-game power cut to score a lengthy draw on a small screen in the dark.
  • We’ll forgive Edgar missing mate in one late on, his position was sooo good and he was probably enjoying himself.

Talking of enjoyment, somewhere in deepest Yorkshire IM James Adair was likely disappointed that his game tonight ended at move 21 in a position with level material.

4NCL Online: Round 4 results

All, these were our results from tonight’s festivities:

All Oxford games have been gathered in. It wasn’t the best of evenings for the firsts, who almost lost by the maximum before K saved the whitewash with a stalemate trick. The thirds registered our third 2-2 draw in four matches, but would not have been flattered at all by a 3-1 victory. Our fourth team are putting everyone else to shame, having yet to drop even half a game point as we charge up the table.

4NCL Online Round 3 results

All, these are our results from the third round of 4NCL Online.  

Skip was kept busier than usual tonight, in part with a couple of faulty game-starts, in part with an Ox3 faux pas (see next para) and in part doing Division 1 PGN. While doing that he noticed a coincidence: Arya’s game in Div 2 finished in a near-identical position to Cooper v Houska with reverse colours. It was a good win by Arya in a losing cause, and Nakul managed a draw on his debut in Ox1 against an Icelandic FM. Oxford 3 lost for the first time this season but Oxford 4 announced their arrival in Division 5 with a bang, winning by the maximum.

Games Skip has gathered 15 of our games at https://lichess.org/study/E8H5UiF1. There’s one missing, the Ox3 board 2 game: unfortunately a Lichess alarm bell went off on that game and our man was defaulted. Ho hum. I hear from the arbiters that something similar happened to someone else tonight in another part of the country.

4NCL Online Round 2 results

All, these are our results from the second round just completed.

Skip has taken up K’s lichess study tip and created one containing all twelve games, all showing colour-wise from the Oxford perspective. Our three teams provided plenty of entertainment (well, they did for your skip – bear in mind he hasn’t switched on the engine):

  • Ben‘s opponent produced a bishop sacrifice that looked like a quick mate. Ben did brilliantly to wriggle out of it before eventually succumbing to a king+queen fork that happened to trap the king as well. 
  • Arya grabbed a couple of rather hot Q-side pawns in a super-complicated 30-move draw with IM Littlewood.
  • Tim‘s game finished before team-mate Graham had reached move nine. Early opening carnage saw him pick off a rook at move 13 and the players galloped to move 40 thereafter, finishing around 8pm.
  • There were swindles galore in our lower teams. Graham’s opponent appeared to have a fortress at move 42 to secure the match, but perhaps he didn’t realise he’d engineered one. All he had to do was sit there and wait. No, he got active and Graham pinched a win to square the match at 2-2.
  • It was even more dramatic in Ox3, where we found ourselves 0-2 down late in the day with no prospect of wins on boards 1 & 4: Dimitrios and Sam were both a pawn down in the endgame and skip was mentally chalking up 0-4. Both miraculously turned around their endgames, Sam playing moves 31-88(!) on the increment, and somehow Ox3 have drawn 2-2. Very exciting to watch, gentlemen.