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NIGEL SHORT'S first place in the British Championship showed a welcome continuation of his recent good form, and an even more welcome return to British competition of our most successful player ever in the world championship. Short's last British Championship had been in 1987, after which he went off to greater deeds and a new home in Athens.

With the rise of Michael Adams in recent years, however, Short's position as England's number one came under threat and, when the team was announced for the forthcoming Chess Olympics, he dropped to second board for the first time. With Matthew Sadler also rising rapidly up the rating list, even second position did not look secure. Perhaps that explained in part why Short returned to the British Championship this year. For the first time in a decade he had something to prove - and he did it in fine style.

This win against Thipsay was a typically powerful effort. Short established a grip on the game in the opening and never let go. The attack finally broke through with 50.f4, 51.f5 and 52.f6+, and Short won a tricky-looking endgame with no trouble at all.

White: Nigel Short

Black: Praveen Thipsay

1 e4 e5 34 h4 Qf8

2 Nf3 Nc6 35 Qf4 Kh7

3 Bb5 a6 36 Nf6+ Kg7

4 Ba4 Nf6 37 Ng4 h5

5 0-0 Be7 38 Ne3 Rb6

6 Re1 b5 39 a3 Qe7

7 Bb3 0-0 40 Qg3 Kh7

8 c3 d6 41 Rc1 Qd7

9 h3 Na5 42 Qf4 Rc6

10 Bc2 c5 43 Rcd1 Qe7

11 d4 Bb7 44 Nd5 Qf8

12 Nbd2 cxd4 45 Qg5 Qh8

13 cxd4 exd4 46 Nf4 Re5

14 Nxd4 Re8 47 Qg3 Qf6

15 b3 Bf8 48 Nh3 Bc8

16 Bb2 g6 49 Ng5+ Kg7

17 Qf3 Bg7 50 f4 Re8

18 Rad1 Rc8 51 f5 Qe5

19 Bb1 Qe7 52 f6+ Qxf6

20 Qe3 Nc6 53 Rf3 Qe5

21 Nf1 Nxd4 54 Rxf7+ Kg8

22 Bxd4 Qf8 55 Rdf1 Qxg3+

23 f3 Nd5 56 Kxg3 d5

24 Qf2 Nc3 57 exd5 Rc4

25 Bxg7 Kxg7 58 R7f4 Bf5

26 Rd3 Nxb1 59 Rxc4 bxc4

27 Rxb1 Re6 60 Rc1 Bd3

28 Rbd1 Rc6 61 Ne6 Kf7

29 Ne3 Qc8 62 Kf4 Ke7

30 Kh2 Kf8 63 Ke5 Kd7

31 Qg3 Qb8 64 Kd4 Kd6

32 Nd5 Kg7 65 Nc5 resigns

33 b4 h6