Independent Pursuits: Chess

THE NEW season of the Four Nations Chess League (4NCL) began last weekend with some splendidly blood-curdling chess. The favourites, Slough, put out a massive team headed by Hebden, Miles, Bogdan Lalic and Mikhail Gurevich to defeat North West Eagles 8-0 and Bigwood (a reincarnation of the current champions Midland Monarchs) 51/2 -21/2, and lead the 12- team league with 4 match points and 131/2 game points ahead of Barbican I 4 (10), Richmond 4 (91/2), Bristol I 3 (10) and Wood Green I 3 (91/2)...

There was some serious transfer activity during the closed season, with the most notable being Mark Hebden, who left Midland Monarchs to join Slough while Luke McShane moved from Richmond to Bigwood.

I've also moved, from Invicta Knights (Maidstone) to Wood Green. My new team drew the first match four all against Home House but then beat the BCM by 51/2-21/2. One of the most entertaining games of the weekend was this completely chaotic battle from our first-round match. John Emms is an increasingly strong and very sensible grandmaster, but he was almost totally bamboozled by the the recently resigned England team captain David Norwood's zany play.

In an English Opening Norwood's 3 d4 looks odd, but is quite well based since although he loses time with the queen, White hopes to set up a bind. 8 Nh3 continued the strategy but after 8... Na5 White was under immediate pressure. Perhaps he could have tried 9 c5, since if d6 10 cxd6 Nc4 11 dxe7 Qxe7 is far from clear. But after 10 b3 d5! he was already in trouble.

Having missed that 12 e4 loses to Nxe4!, Norwood decided to jettison his queen for two pieces and a pawn. But 15 Bb2 was very odd - why not castle? Emms missed various wins; one of the cleanest was 26... e5! and if 27 Nxe5 Qxe2+ 28 Kxd4 Qxf2+ etc. But he was still fine until, unsure whether he'd completed 40 moves, he banged out 41... a2?: 41... Kf6 42 Ra6+ Kg5 should win. After 42 d6 White was doing well and he could also have tried 43 Rxe7+. In the final extraordinary position both sides must keep on repeating. Of course, if 48... Qxa7?? 49 Ne6 is mate!

White: David Norwood

Black: John Emms

4NCL 1998 - Home House

vs Wood Green

English Opening

jspeelman@compuserve.com

1 g3 c5

2 c4 g6

3 d4 cxd4

4 Qxd4 Nf6

5 Nc3 Bg7

6 Bg2 Nc6

7 Qd2 0-0

8 Nh3?! Na5

9 Qd3 Qc7

10 b3 d5!

11 cxd5 Bf5

12 Qd2 12 Ne4

13 Nxe4 Bxe4

14 Bxe4 Bc3

15 Bb2 Bxd2+

16 Kxd2 Qb6

17 Bc3 Rac8

18 Rac1 Rfd8

19 Nf4 Nc6

20 Nd3 Nd4

21 Bg2 Rxc3!?

22 Rxc3 Qa5

23 Rhc1 Qxa2+

24 Ke3 Nf5+

25 Kf3 Nd4+

26 Ke3 Nxe2?!

27 Rc8 Rxc8

28 Rxc8+ Kg7

29 Rc7 Ng1

30 Rxb7 a5

31 Be4 f5

32 Bf3 Nxf3

33 Kxf3 Qa3

34 Ke3 Kf6

35 Rb6+ Kg7

36 Rb7 Kf6

37 Rb6+ Kf7

38 Kd4 Qa1+

39 Kc4 a4

40 Ra6 a3

41 Ra7 a2?

42 d6 Ke8

43 d7+ Kd8

44 Nc5 Qf1+

45 Kd5 Qd1+

46 Kc6 Qd6+

47 Kb5 Qb8+

48 Kc6 Qd6+

1/2-1/2

Arts and Entertainment
Smart mover: Peter Bazalgette

film
Arts and Entertainment
'Old Fashioned' will be a different kind of love story to '50 Shades'
film
Arts and Entertainment
Tracey Emin's 'My Bed' is returning to the Tate more than 15 years after it first caused shockwaves at the gallery
artTracey Emin's bed returns to the Tate after record sale
Arts and Entertainment

film
Arts and Entertainment
The Great British Bake Off contestants line-up behind Sue and Mel in the Bake Off tent

TV
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Beast would strip to his underpants and take to the stage with a slogan scrawled on his bare chest whilst fans shouted “you fat bastard” at him

music
Arts and Entertainment
On set of the Secret Cinema's Back to the Future event

film
Arts and Entertainment
Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman

film
Arts and Entertainment
Pedro Pascal gives a weird look at the camera in the blooper reel

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Public vote: Art Everywhere poster in a bus shelter featuring John Hoyland
art
Arts and Entertainment
Peter Griffin holds forth in The Simpsons Family Guy crossover episode

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Judd Apatow’s make-it-up-as-you-go-along approach is ideal for comedies about stoners and slackers slouching towards adulthood
filmWith comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on
Arts and Entertainment
booksForget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Arts and Entertainment
Off set: Bab El Hara
tvTV series are being filmed outside the country, but the influence of the regime is still being felt
Arts and Entertainment
Red Bastard: Where self-realisation is delivered through monstrous clowning and audience interaction
comedy
Arts and Entertainment
O'Shaughnessy pictured at the Unicorn Theatre in London
tvFiona O'Shaughnessy explains where she ends and her strange and wonderful character begins
Arts and Entertainment
The new characters were announced yesterday at San Diego Comic Con

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Rhino Doodle by Jim Carter (Downton Abbey)

TV
Arts and Entertainment
No Devotion's Geoff Rickly and Stuart Richardson
musicReview: No Devotion, O2 Academy Islington, London
Arts and Entertainment
Christian Grey cradles Ana in the Fifty Shades of Grey film

film
Arts and Entertainment
Comedian 'Weird Al' Yankovic

Is the comedy album making a comeback?

comedy
Arts and Entertainment
While many films were released, few managed to match the success of James Bond blockbuster 'Skyfall'
film
Arts and Entertainment
Jamie Dornan as Christian Grey in the first-look Fifty Shades of Grey movie still

film
Arts and Entertainment
Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc, centre, are up for Best Female TV Comic for their presenting quips on The Great British Bake Off

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Martin Freeman as Lester Nygaard in the TV adaptation of 'Fargo'

TV
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

    The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

    The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
    A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

    A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

    Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
    Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

    Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

    How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
    Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

    From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

    He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
    How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

    How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

    Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash
    Shipping container hotels: Pop-up hotels filling a niche

    Pop-up hotels filling a niche

    Spending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but these mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
    Native American headdresses are not fashion accessories

    Feather dust-up

    A Canadian festival has banned Native American headwear. Haven't we been here before?
    Boris Johnson's war on diesel

    Boris Johnson's war on diesel

    11m cars here run on diesel. It's seen as a greener alternative to unleaded petrol. So why is London's mayor on a crusade against the black pump?
    5 best waterproof cameras

    Splash and flash: 5 best waterproof cameras

    Don't let water stop you taking snaps with one of these machines that will take you from the sand to meters deep
    Louis van Gaal interview: Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era

    Louis van Gaal interview

    Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era
    Will Gore: The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series

    Will Gore: Outside Edge

    The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series
    The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

    The air strikes were tragically real

    The children were playing in the street with toy guns
    Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

    Britain as others see us

    Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
    How did our legends really begin?

    How did our legends really begin?

    Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
    Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

    Lambrusco is back on the menu

    Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz