Uxbridge D (2) v Ealing C (2) – 15 February 23 – Hillingdon Division 3

In our return away match against Uxbridge D on Wednesday evening we drew 2-2 against the similarly graded Uxbridge team.

On board 1 Alex played a French defence as black. His opponent played the Exchange variation as white, which is notably drawish, and after both played best moves they reached a position where there was no discernable advantage for either white or black. So a draw was agreed. Chess engine analysis afterwards confirmed the draw.

Tony played white in a Sicilian which had ventured into unusual territory by move 3! Black’s early e5 and f5 push looked unsound but was difficult to refute. Tony eventually gained a slight initiative and a key moment arrived at move 15 when he could win a pawn and achieve a strong position. He didn’t stop to calculate long enough, messed up the move order and the opportunity passed. After that it descended into a draw with black having a slightly easier position by the end.

On board 3 David played black against a Centre Game opening 1.d4 d5 2.e4. White allowed black to take the pawn and played c3 offering a further pawn. White developed his bishop to c4 and queen to b3 threatening black’s f7 square. However black was able to defend the threat. White castled queenside and black kingside, and white continued his kingside attack. Black was able to gain material advantage by capturing white’s white squared bishop after checking with his queen. Black could then pursue a mating attack on the queenside whilst defending his king from white’s attack with his centrally placed bishop and queen. White resigned when checkmate by black’s queen couldn’t be stopped.

Michael played white on board 4; he blundered a bishop early, on move 9 in the Smith Morra gambit. His opponent, playing black blundered on move 13 potentially restoring equality, but Michael missed the tactic needed to equalise. So the game continued with white a piece down into the endgame and with black supporting his advancing pawns with the bishop, white resigned.

David Housego, Hillingdon C team captain.