4NCL Final Round – Critical Game

Crowthorne A’s final round match in the 4NCL Division 3 South against Cambridge University 2 was a potentially critical game for the entire season, given that a number of teams were bunched closely together so that a win would mean second place, and a loss would mean somewhere in mid-table.

Paul’s game, despite a rather quiet beginning, gradually became more and more complex and was the last game to finish, with the match score being on 2.5-2.5

Many thanks to Paul for providing comments to the game.
Click on any move for a popup board to appear.

Notwithstanding Paul’s final comment, his teammates thought that this was a well-played game (by both players) as some inaccuracies can be expected in such complicated positions.

Daniel Shek is victorious at the 4NCL

Talented junior Daniel Shek played a nice game for Crowthorne against a strong opponent at the recent 4NCL. Many thanks to John Upham and British Chess News for the annotations.
(Click on a move in the game to display a board.)

Online 4NCL – Season 4 Roundup

Many thanks to our Online Team Captain, George Green, for providing the latest season’s roundup.

Crowthorne had a squad of 14 players (initially 13, then Ben Coates joined us with 2 rounds to go) for our 2 teams of 4.

Plenty you might think, but, as the season went on, fewer people were available, meaning that in the end we had 62 availabilities for the 56 games, so there were only 6 occasions when someone had to be “rested”.

Crowthorne 1 had been promoted to Division 3. We lost our first 3 matches, but then won the next 4, putting us 4th out of 8 teams in our group. The highlight of the season was possibly our 2½ – 1½ win over local rivals Farnham, who outgraded us by over 100 points on average.

Crowthorne 2 had a harder time of it in Division 5, but the 4NCL does give some of our less experienced members the chance to play longer (45+15) competitive games of chess.

They finished 43rd out of 56 teams, with 2 wins, 1 draw and 4 losses.

The 4NCL currently has plans to run season 5, starting in late January.

I’ll contact the club members nearer the time to see what interest we have in participating in this.

Online 4NCL – Season 4 Round 4

Here are Crowthorne’s results in yesterday’s Round 4 matches in the Online 4NCL. A welcome first win for Crowthorne 1, and Crowthorne 2 did very well against much higher-rated opposition.

Derek played a fine attacking game on the black side of a Benoni Defence:

Online 4NCL – Season 4 Round 2

Here are Crowthorne’s results for the second round of the online 4NCL:

As can be seen, both teams went down to substantially higher rated opposition.

However, there was one highlight, and that was Mark’s sparkling win in his game. In the position shown, White has a forced sequence that leads to a winning attack:

Online 4NCL – Season 4 begins!

Season 4 of the online 4NCL (The Four Nations Chess League) started on Tuesday, and Crowthorne Chess Club has two teams playing – Crowthorne 1 in Division 3 and Crowthorne 2 in Division 5.

Crowthorne 1’s start to the new season was rather inauspicious, as they went down 1.5 – 2.5 despite significantly out-rating their opponents Bristol Cabot Blackbeards.

Crowthorne 2, on the other hand, achieved the reverse result by beating their opponents by the same margin, despite being out-rated by over 300 points on average.

Full results, tables etc can be found on the 4NCL website.

Online 4NCL Season 3 Roundup

Our Online 4NCL Team Captain George Green has provided the following summary of Crowthorne’s season.

The 4NCL season 3 has now finished for Crowthorne. 

Our 1st team didn’t gain automatic qualification to Division3, finishing 3rd in their group. Out 2nd team finished 59th out of 72 teams in Division 5.

We had a squad of 13 players, which comfortably supported 2 teams, with an average availability of 10.5 people for 8 boards. This meant that I had to “rest” one or more players each time, but I shared this around as fairly as I could.

It was good to see one or two of our junior members winning games against higher rated opponents. In fact Dylan won 3 such games with his entertaining play!!

The 45+15 time control is a bit quick for some our older, slower thinking players (me), but offers the juniors a chance to spend more time on their moves, which they’ll need to do as they improve. I’m not sure that they all made the most of this opportunity!

4NCL season 3 starts on August 24th. It is too early to say what the club’s position will be on OTB vs. Online chess, until we see how Covid goes.

Online 4NCL Round 7

Crowthorne’s last matches in Season 3 of the Online 4NCL took place yesterday, with the following results:

Other results in the round meant that if Crowthorne 1 had won their match, they would have achieved automatic promotion, but unfortunately we finished just short of this goal.