Chess: Paisley set the pattern

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The Independent Culture
THE CLUB and county chess scene, organised by the British Chess Federation, has remained largely unchanged for longer than anyone can remember, writes William Hartston. The principal competitions are the National Club Championships (sponsored by Leigh Interests) and the County Championship (not sponsored by anyone at all).

The finals were held last weekend in Birmingham, and brought first-time victories to Leicestershire, who beat Kent 14-6, and Paisley YMCA who took the National Club trophy to Scotland by beating Guildford 4-2.

The following game, played on third board of the National Club final, shows the need to check tactical details even when playing standard ideas. Black's 9 . . . Ne7 is a normal solution to the pinning of the other knight. After 10. Bxf6 gxf6, Black's king will be safe on h8, and he frees his game with f5. Ne7 also prepares Ng6 and h6, forcing the bishop away.

White's 10. Nh4 is a routine reply, preparing Nf5 or Nxg6 in reply to Ng6, but in the current position it is quite wrong. With 10 . . . Ng4] Black gained time by attacking f2. White's next two moves were inaccurate, allowing the neat tactic of 13 . . . Bxd4] winning a pawn. Finally, 23. Rxc6? (Nc3 is better) hastened the end by opening the game for Black's bishop to play a decisive part.

White: B Connell

Black: S Mannion

1 e4 e5

2 Nf3 Nc6

3 Bc4 Bc5

4 c3 Nf6

5 d3 a6

6 0-0 Ba7

7 Re1 0-0

8 Bg5 d6

9 Bb3 Ne7

10 Nh4 Ng4

11 d4 h6

12 Bc1 exd4

13 cxd4 Bxd4

14 Qxd4 Nc6

15 Qd2 Qxh4

16 h3 Nge5

17 f4 Nd3

18 Rf1 Nxc1

19 Rxc1 Be6

20 Bd5 Rae8

21 Bxc6 bxc6

22 f5 Bc8

23 Rxc6 Rxe4

24 Nc3 Re5

25 Rxc7 Bxf5

26 Rf1 Bxh3

27 Qxd6 Bxg2

28 Kxg2 Qg4+

29 Kh1 Qh3+

30 Kg1 Qg3+

White resigns

On Saturday 9 July, the British Chess Magazine is holding a summer sale at the Chess Shop, 69 Masbro Road, London W14 0LS (071-603 2877). Competitions and bargains from 10am to 7pm.