Thursday, 26 February 2015

Another default for A team

Another week, another 5-0 result for the A team. Once again we have had a match defaulted against us and clock up two match points without pushing a pawn. Priorslee Lions B were only able to find one player for this week's match apparently and conceded the match.

It's not really how we want to win but we can't do much about it if there is no opposing team. And a further result this week with Shrewsbury B losing to Telford B means that we only need one game point from three games to assure promotion. We face Shrewsbury B next so that's the chance to clinch it.

Sunday, 22 February 2015

B team promoted

Church Stretton B have clinched promotion from division 3 with another resounding win. A 3-1 victory against Priorslee Lions C puts them on 18 points and out of reach of all but second-placed Newport B. The race for the title is still on though and I imagine that is what is in Tom's mind now.

Church Stretton B 3 Priorslee Lions C 1
G Shepherd 1, M Reynolds 0; 
E Elwell 0.5, S O'Dell 0.5; 
T Williamson 1, A Brannen 0; 

C Pimm-Jones 0.5, T Gilmour 0.5

The B team's promotion puts added pressure on the A team to do the same as we don't want two teams in the second division next season. An emphatic 5-0 win at Shrewsbury B didn't do us any harm though.

The match was a bit more balanced than the scoreline suggests however and the result flatters us a little. Karl was first to win, against the run of play, as he ended up worse from the opening. His opponent admitted afterwards to psyching himself out and not playing more positively because of the perceived difference in playing strength. A good lesson to play the position on the board and not worry about who your opponent is.

Michael was next to win with an approach that was a bit like a tiger waiting to pounce in a position that was reasonably balanced; as soon as his opponent strayed he was in for the kill. David followed and clinched the match putting us 3-up, having been dominant most of the game and patient enough not to squander any advantage.

The top two boards took quite a time to come to a conclusion. Steve was a bit lucky on board two as his opponent didn't manage to get anything decisive from a space advantage and started dropping pawns in the latter stages. Trevor's game went down to the wire with a frantic race to win finally ending up with KRP v KR. His opponent missed a check during the scramble and as it was an illegal move he pointed out that Trevor should have an extra two minutes. No-one jumped in to offer to re-set the clock quickly however and Trevor said 'play on'. Fortunately he won on time, but with less than a minute on his own clock, so didn't regret his gesture.

So the A team are two points clear at the top of Div 2, but there are still a couple of crucial games to go, including a return with Shrewsbury B.

Shrewsbury B 0 Church Stretton A 5
M Smith 0, T Brotherton 1; 
N O'Connor 0, S Rooney 1; 
A Lewis 0, M Bukojemski 1; 
I Davies 0, K Wakefield 1; 
A Purser 0, D Hodge 1.

Monday, 16 February 2015

B team out in front

The B team, captained by Tom Williamson is still riding high in division three and poised for promotion. Tom has been a non-playing captain for much of the season but has certainly excelled on team selection having won seven and drawn two from nine matches.

Since Christmas, the B team has chalked up wins against Oswestry and Newport C and held its closest rivals, second-placed Newport B to a 2-2 draw.

The match this week against Priorslee Lions C could be a promotion clincher - hope I haven't spoken too soon!

Church Stretton B 4 Oswestry B 0
Graham Shepherd     1   S Tulett        0
David Hodge.               1.  K Bacon.     0
Francis Rooney            1.  A Evans.      0
John Westhead.            1. J Molyneux. 0
                                      4.                      0
Newport C 1 Church Stretton B 3
J Eadon                        0. Graham Shepherd      1
P Broderick.                1/2 David Hodge.              1/2
M Price.                         0. John Westhead            1
M Moore.                     1/2 Tom Williamson           1/2
                                      1.                                       3
Church Stretton B 2 Newport B 2
Graham Shepherd       0. A Mehmood.                 1
John Westhead              1. S Rose.                         0
Eric Elwell.                    1/2 D Griffith                     1/2
John Caswell.               1/2 C Paul.                        1/2
                                       2.                                       2

A team still in the hunt

The A team has had a good start to the second half of the season, having started off lagging behind the leaders in division two due to the fact that we had played fewer games before Christmas. A win against Telepost B on 15 January went to plan. Then the next match against Telford C was called off at the last minute and has resulted in a 5-0 default to us.

A further 5-0 result, although this time we actually won all the games was against Wellington B. Four of the games finished quite quickly with Trevor, Steve, Karl and Eric chalking up wins and then David finally managed to squeeze something out of his game with some intriguing zugzwang-like outcomes in the complex queen and bishop ending leaving his opponent with only losing moves to choose from.

That leaves us currently on top of division two on game points, although we still have a game in hand on second-placed Telford B. Next couple of matches could prove vital with away fixture against Shrewsbury B and home against Priorslee B.

Church Stretton A 3.5  Telepost B 1.5
T Brotherton 0.5, K Tabner 0.5; 
S Rooney 1, A Benjamin 0; 
K Wakefield 1, S Kempsell 0; 
M Bukojemski 1, J Westhead 0; 
F Rooney 0,J Casewell 1.

Church Stretton A 5 Wellington B 0
N Sampson 0, T Brotherton 1; 
J Lenton 0, S Rooney 1; 
D Powell 0, K Wakefield 1; 
M Anandh 0, D Hodge 1; 
M Walsh 0, E Elwell 1.