The 4NCL is rapidly developing, but many players like to jet over to Germany, so there were plenty of British troops in action there: Peter Wells for Passau, Hodgson and Conquest for Delmenhorst, Nigel Short - in fine form beating the dangerous Russian, Alexander Morozevich, on Saturday and almost defeating Arthur Yusupov on Sunday - and Dan King for Castrop and Matthew Sadler and myself for Solingen.
The Solingen team is so strong that, even in the absence of Michael Adams, I was playing on the sixth of the eight boards behind Yusupov, Sadler, Nikolic, Hubner and Piket. As we should have, we won both matches, which gives us a perfect four wins out of four going into next weekend's match against the powerful Dresden team, headed by Alexei Shirov. I managed to win both games against reasonably strong international masters. Here is the story of my first win on Saturday.
After some fencing, we transposed to a venerable line of the Nimzo-Indian Defence. If 11..a6 12.Be2, the tiny weakness induced on b6 may be significant later. In the critical diagram position, if 14...Bg4 15.e4 Ne7 16.c4 gives a pleasant edge. 14...Bf5 is also critical when I might well have tried 15.e4!? Bxe4 (if 15...Nxe4!? 16.Nh4!) 16.Rxe4 Nxe4 17.Qe1 Rxd5 18.Qxe4.
If 17...Qe5 18.c7 Rdc8 19.gxf3!. After 20.e4!, the bishops were very powerful in the ending and I cleaned up fairly efficiently.
White: Jon Speelman
Black: Holger Ellers
Bundesliga, 21 November 1998
14.d5 (see diagram) e4
Black resignsReuse content