Chess

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A hundred years ago, the world's first International Chess Tournament for Women was held in London to celebrate the diamond jubilee of the reign of Queen Victoria. "It was a novel and indeed unique sight to see these lady players seated at the different boards," according to a British Chess Magazine report. "Very many people thought that few of the fair combatants would last out the contest with its two rounds a day for 10 days, but in this they were proved wrong."

The winner was Mary Rudge of Clifton, who had "for long enjoyed the reputation of being the strongest lady chess player in the world". She conceded only one draw in her 19 games, though the BCM was unenthusiastic about her style: "She risked nothing, she never indulged in fireworks for the purpose of startling the gallery; if she got a pawn, she kept it and won, if she got a piece she kept it and won, if she got a `grip' she kept it and won, if she got a winning position, she kept it and won."

Last week, the Agency Club in London, celebrated that event with an invitation tournament with five top women and five young males. First place was shared by Ketino Kachiani-Gershinska, Luke McShane and Angus Dunnington, all scoring 6 out of 9.

No one could criticise Susan Lalic for "risking nothing" in the sharp choice of opening that brought her victory here. After 20...Rfd8, Black had excellent compensation for the two pawns sacrificed. White found nothing better than giving up a piece.

White: John Richardson

Black: Susan Lalic

1 d4 Nf6 21 Qxe4 Qxc5

2 c4 e6 22 Ke2 Rxd6

3 Nc3 Bb4 23 Kf1 Rad8

4 Qc2 d5 24 h4 gxh4

5 cxd5 exd5 25 Qxh4+ Qh5

6 Bg5 c5 26 Qxh5+ Kxh5

7 dxc5 h6 27 Rac1 Rd2

8 Bh4 g5 28 Rc5+ Kg6

9 Bg3 Ne4 29 Re2 Kf6

10 e3 Qa5 30 f4 Rd1+

11 Nge2 Bf5 31 Kf2 Nb4

12 Be5 0-0 32 Rb5 Nd3+

13 Nd4 Nxc3 33 Kg3 Rg8+

14 Nxf5 Ne4+ 34 Kh2 b6

15 Kd1 Nc6 35 Rc2 Nc5

16 Bd6 Be1 36 b4 Ne4

17 Nxh6+ Kh7 37 Rc6+ Ke7

18 Bd3 Kxh6 38 Rh5 Rd2

19 Bxe4 dxe4 White resigned

20 Rxe1 Rfd8

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