Update at 21st June
Last night an intrepid band of 4 members, Mike D Barrett, Eddie Patten, Mike Barooah and Bob Greaves took part in the M'side team Lightning Tournament at Aigburth. Only MDB had played this type of chess previously but that didn't help nor did an explanation of the rules as in the 1st round he left his queen en pris and two of the others left themselves in check and an immediate loss----0-4. There was an improvement in the 2nd round with MB gaining a draw at which time Dave Welch took pity upon us and gave us a 3rd round bye and a 4-0 benefit. In round 4 there was an actual win for MB but back to normal in round 5 at 0-4. Round 6 produced MDB's only win in a 1-3 loss. Waterloo won the competition with 16.5 game points. I think we all enjoyed the experience overall and we can only get better(can't we ?)
I had a brief chat with Dave Welch who confirmed that the NCCU scheme would not proceed and Mside will operate the ECF new scheme. He and Dave Pearcey are working hard towards this end and should be able to publish the results ready for the start of the 2012-3 season.
Update at 12th June
The draft AGM minutes have now been circulated via e-mail for comment and any adjustment deemed necessary.
During the period up to the President's evening on Tuesday 28th August at Ravenmeols members are invited by Joe to join in chess on Thursday evenings at Woodvale club based at St John Stone Church Hall Sandbrook Rd Ainsdale .
Last weekend saw the 2012 South Lakes Congress and a report is on the Congress page of this website
Update at 23rd May
Members wishing to know the identity of the 2011-12 Club Champion will have to wait a little while longer. Unfortunately Bob Platt has been ill and indeed spent almost two weeks in hospital but is now at home but by no means fully recovered. I have spoken to him and passed on Best Wishes from all club members for a speedy and full recovery.
Joe spent a very beneficial last weekend in Rhyl when he came 2nd in the Minor (Under 125 ) with 4/5 to the winner's 4.5/5. After a bye in the first round Joe had 3 wins and a draw with a grade performance of 136. He won £100!! which brings me nicely on to a reminder for the club's social evening this coming Friday starting at the Cross House pub from 8-00pm and going on to the Balti Indian Restaurant ( opposite Waitrose Car Park entrance ) to eat at approx 9-00 pm. Any one intending to eat but who has not yet informed Paul Sutton-01704 224642- please now do so.
Next Tuesday's planned talk by Pete Brocklebank has had to be deferred and will take place at St Jerome's during the Summer. Specific details will be provided in due course.
I am aware that Rob, Andre and I will be going to the Mside AGM at Aigburth next Wednesday. If anyone else wants to go please tell me so that transport can be provided.
Update at 10th May.
Knotty Ash cup 'AT LAST'
Formby 3 2 Southport
1. w 125 J Dilworth 0--------1 b D Hull 117
2 120 M Barrett 1--------0 C Crane 126
3 114 D Taylor 0--------1 S James 117
4 114 A Eagle 1---------0 L Evans 112
5 113 E Patten 1--------0 J Rothwell ug
grades are from August 2011 per rules
Formby approached this match with their normal confidence in this competition and seemingly correctly when Joe lost in an endgame in which his opponent gave back the exchange to leave a passed pawn about which Joe could do nothing. We then levelled with a win for Andre. He had been about to lose a piece for several moves but his opponent for some reason refused to take it and then lost a rook himself with a bishop fork. Andre doubled his rooks on the open knight's file directly against the king and and this attack prevailed. Mike went rook v bishop and knight down with a combination he didn't see but his opponent didn't see Mike' later reposte when winning a bishop back to avoid mate and resigned when his knight was also trapped. Dave seemed to have a position in which a draw was inevitable and which would have given Formby the match but lost when his opponents king was allowed into Dave's defence to support a passed pawn. Thus Eddie was left to decide the result. fresh from his epic win the previous night (see below) he was level for some time then two pawns up but suddenly three pawns down. However cometh the hour (and a half) or all but the last second of it cometh the man and in a little controversy his opponent's digital clock reached '0' and Eddie claimed the game a second before his reached zero. The previous night had clearly been a good training exercise as all three winners in this final had played then against much higher graded players
The cup comes to Formby for the first time after 20+ years of effort.
The previous night Formby had travelled to Chester for the Wirral Cup Final lacking Dave and Bob on the top two boards (thus surprising Phil on his arrival ) and therefore effectively with neither hope nor expectation. Everyone fought hard including Paul J until he was suckered into a back rank mate but hero of the evening was Eddie who prevented a whitewash and forced his opponent's resignation when about to go two pieces up.
1. b 207 J Carleton 1-----0 w C P Fisher 154
2 179 C Doran 1-----0 P Brocklebank 152
3 182 D Robertson 1-----0 K Howard 141
4 189 S Connor 1-----0 P Jordan 140
5 163 R Valentinas 1-----0 M Barrett 132
6 158 D K Bryan 0-----1 E Patten 108
7 178 R Noonan 1-----0 A Eagle 114
1256 6-----1 941
Update at 3rd May
Subject to a decision on the outstanding 1st team match v Waterloo, the League season has now finished. The 1st team ended with a win away at Wallasey A with highlights being wins on top and bottom boards by Dave and Joe. All other boards drew and the result leaves Formby 1 in mid table, a very creditable position.
Formby 2 escaped relegation from Div 3 when Southport beat Waterloo to gain top spot and leave their opponents in bottom place, one below Formby. Formby 3 also escaped relegation finishing bottom but one whilst the 440 team in its inaugural season finished in second place.
Whilst next season may prove difficult for the 1st team if it cannot be strengthened the lower teams can look forward with confidence as all our new members have made full contributions to the teams and have visibly improved as the season progressed.
There remain two cup finals to be fought. Next Wednesday we shall face a no doubt very confident Southport side in the Knotty Ash final at Aigburth but surely at long last it will be our turn to win it. The previous evening a team of seven will travel to Chester for the Final of the Wirral Cup.
Liverpool F C's rearranged match will mean that we shall be without Dave so Bob P will have to face Wirral Division 1 player of the year John Carleton and one has to say that the rest of the Formby team are likely to be heavily outgraded. The travel should prepare us for next season as Buckley Mold beat Wallasey 3 to stay in Division 1 and send their opponents down to be replaced by Chester 3.
In the Club Challengers' final Andre capitalised on one error by Kevin G to force a very strong king side attack which overcame all defence and enabled Andre to retain the trophy.
The end of the competitive season does not stop us playing social chess or doing chess related things and Ravenmeols is booked for every Tuesday until 5th June inclusive. On that night we shall have our AGM for which I will circulate members separately. The previous Tuesday 29th May Peter Brocklebank has offered to give a talk and demo intended primarily for the lower graded members of the club but to which all are welcome. Can members let me know their intentions for this. Finally I have already circulated members by e-mail re the Mside AGM at Aigburth on Wednesday 30 May and again can members let me know about attendance for this.
Update at 26th April
After last week's frantic activity there has been the disappointment this week of two conceded matches. When the Wirral team went two players down for an away match requiring a return journey of 90 miles it was the knowledge that the club had two other matches in the week that persuaded the skipper very reluctantly to concede with a result that had no influence on the division. The following day he received a call from Littlewoods who were in the same boat re players and with a much smaller pool of choice and with the same decision. Thus Formby are through to the final of the Knotty Ash Cup to play Southport probably at Aigburth on Wednesday 9th May.
The 3rd team finished their season last night at Aigburth 3 with a 1.5- 4.5 defeat. Draws came from Eddie, Patrick and John G.
The Club Championship finalists are now known with Bob Platt beating Phil in their replay and Mike H beating son Gareth in a game that went to the (time)wire.
Following a phone call from his wife Madeleine I was able to visit Mike Fraser recovering in Fazackerly Hospital from a bout of pneumonia. He looked much better than when I had last seen him before Christmas and was hopeful of returning home within the week. He had a number of books on his bed including one re chess and is keen to return to active games for the beginning of next season.
Update at 20th April (as amended)
This has been a busy week with three M'side matches and especially for stalwart Joe Dilworth who played in all three.
On Tuesday Formby 2 received Atticus 5 with the home team strengthened by Pete Brocklebank on top board. He is still feeling his way after his break so an early draw was a good result. Mike had at last a positive result against old friend and rival Liam when for a change it was his opponent who castled into trouble.Almost immediately Dave T went down under very strong pressure and both Duncan and Andre drew leaving the match dependant upon Joe. He had won the exchange but at the expense of a past pawn and he had to give up a piece to remove this. At a time when he had rook v rook,bishop and pawn his opponent's time ran out without him making any claims enabling Joe and the team to win by he narrowest of margins.
On Wednesday Formby 1 went to Aigburth 1 With a slightly weakened team Formby had a not unexpected defeat with only Mike H and Joe getting draws. At the same time and venue Aigburth 2 beat Waterloo but too late to avoid relegation.
On Thursday Formby 2 played their last match at promotion seeking Southport 1. Their earlier win had given them hope and there was a good start with a convincing win by Andre followed by a draw by the skipper back on top board. However John G lost and then Dave T and Joe who, although defending stoutly, were both three pawns down and in inferior positions so that the match was lost before Duncan forced a resignation when about to queen a pawn following a rook and two pawns v bishop and one pawn ending.
With four of their six losses being by 3.5 it is clear that the team has fought long and hard against strong opponents. Their fate is in Waterloo's hands but as that team has to beat both Wallasey and Southport who are vying for the divisional title there is a good chance that Formby 2 will survive in the 3rd Division for next season.
The Club Championship finalists are still to be known following a draw in the semi final game between Bob P and Phil who will have to replay in a 30 minute game.
Update at 13th April
There was little club chess activity this week with the only competitive chess being the Challengers' semi-final in which Kevin G beat Mike Barooah.
Further afield Stewart and Mike Haslinger had entered the Delft congress in Holland.
Stewart, seeded 4th finished equal 2nd and 3rd on countback losing only to the ultimate winner in Group A. Mike finished with 3/6 and equal 25th (33rd on countback) but well above half way and with a grading level of 1800 rather than his current 1728.
This coming week the 2nds play their final two matches so next weeks news will be very specific-good or bad. Waterloo have apparently played both their matches v EEC but with no publication of results a disappointing failure of communication in this high tech era.
Update at 5th April.
Results this week in the M'side league have determined that neither Formby 1 nor 3 will be relegated. Formby 1 received bottom club Aigburth 2 and their 5-3 win meant relegation for the visitors. The first 3 results on the bottom boards were not however helpful with draws by Paul S and Kevin H and defeat for Joe. At this stage your correspondent left a little despondent only to be told by the skipper the following day of wins for himself, Gareth , Dave and especially Mike H who had been two pieces down recovered one and then mated his opponent. Phil lost but the team result was very satisfactory.
On the same night the 440 team also received an Aigburth side who were also clearly treating this division as an experience gaining exercise. There was an early win for Rob Owen who is improving mightily and a very welcome return to form by Kevin G who gained revenge for a recent defeat. Mike Barooah and John Grady also won to give a clean sweep.
In another place Prescot 2 were losing to Hoylake in Div 4 to ensure that Formby 3 will stay up leaving only the 2nds in danger. As said below they have just two matches to go whereas Waterloo 3, immediately below them in bottom place,for some reason still have five matches to
play including three against the promotion challengers. It will be a tough time for the 2nds.
Update at 28th March
The same opening as last week ! The 2nd team received Wallasey C and seemed to be .5-3.5 down after about an hours play. Dave and Duncan lost as did the skipper who seems to have a compulsion to castle right into trouble with the black pieces. Joe and Leon were battling it out
with a small material advantage to Joe whilst Alan could not break thro' his opponent' defences.
A win and draw were agreed to enable the Wallasey players to depart at a reasonable hour with a 4-2 win and their hosts struggling to avoid relegation..The team have 2 more matches with that against Southport 2 postponed from 7th to 19th April
The 3rd team were also at home against a very solid Hoylake 2 team. There were draws by Rob H, Peter and Patrick whilst Eddie went down to a strong yet currently ungraded player. The skipper was extremely courteous in playing an opponent who arrived 45 minutes late but could not capitalise on the time advantage leaving Kevin G who was unsuccessful in his fight for a point against a player with much first team experience.
At the same time Kevin H and Bob Platt settled their club championship contest. After a draw a 30 minute quick play game in which activity neither player is at ease was settled in Bob's favour.
The Knotty Ash semi-final v Littlewoods will now be played at Formby altho' we were drawn away and on Tuesday 24th April.
Update at 23rd March
2 matches and 2 losses this week in the Mside league. The 1st team received Atticus 2 whom they had narrowly beaten away but there was a reverse this time. There was hope when the skipper had an early win and Mike H went a piece up and Kevin H had a 3 pawn advantage. However Mike's position required hom to return the piece and JIm Wiseman got a perpetual against Kevin. With 3 losses on the top 4 boards draws on the bottom 2 were not enough.
On the same night Formby 3 received Aigburth 3 and lost 2-4. Kevin G's bubble has burst and Peter B could only draw on top board. Eddie was the only winner when the result was already settled.
Atticus and Aigburth web sites give some further detail of the matches.
Update at 15th March
A full report of our Blackpool weekend is now on the congress page. Our only success was by Mike H who won shares of the Vets and grading prizes in the Major section. Details of potential prizewinners are on the Blackpool Chess Congress site altho' in the the Minor section in which there were several Formby entrants the list has been pulled whilst apparently further enquiries are made following the 5/5 victory by an ungraded player.
PS several of us appear in the photo gallery on the Blackpool site
The experience away does not seem to have helped players returning to Merseyside league games.
Formby 3 went to Southport 2 on Monday and drew 3-3. Rob and Eddie both lost as did Kevin G on top board and for the first time this season for the 3rds. Fortunately there was a return to form by skipper Paul S and wins for Patrick and John.
Formby 1 were then trounced by Widnes 1 with only skipper Bob Platt getting a draw. In mitigation Formby had to default on bottom board and several games were close with chances with Paul S losing on time and Mike B being made to suffer the consequences of making an illegal move when also in time trouble.
Update at 8th march
The 440 team continue to give our newer players an opportunity for competitive chess and this week received Hoylake. Our only winner was Rob Owens contra'd by Mike Barooahs loss. Skipper Kevin Gilligan and John Grady drew to give a team draw.
The 2nds went to EEC needing a win to ease relegation fears but lost by a narrow margin. Dave Taylor had another early win followed by a draw for Peter B on top board. Joe the lost and Duncan drew. The skipper could see no chance of a personal win and also that Andre was way behind in material and position so that when Andre duly lost a draw was agreed to leave a team loss by 2-5 to 3-5.
Andre had done better earlier in the week when beating Bob Greaves in a very entertaining game to reach the final of the Club Challengers' competition. In the Main section quarter finals Gareth beat Mike Barrett and Rob H got a very satisfactory draw versus Phil so they will need to
have a 30 minute replay.
10 members will be taking part in the various sections of the Blackpool Congress this weekend and we will also meet up with former members, Carl Heald, Graham Neil, and Peter Willoughby who are also playing. I hope to have a full report in by the end of next week
Update at 1st March
There were 2 M'side matches this week. On Tuesday the 3rds received Wallasey D and lost by the narrowest of margins. Eddie had an early draw but losses for Rob and Alan put us behind. Kevin won yet again and Peter's comeback continued with a win against a very experienced player on top board. Unfortunately the skipper when coming from behind pressed for a win and miscalculated to lose a game he might well have have drawn.
The following night the 2nds travelled to Skem. with the skipper finding that not only did he not know how to get there from 100 yards away but neither did some locals. Thus the match started late but Rob Owens and his opponent treated their game as a quick play which Rob won. Alan's week got no better when he lost again but no doubt given the opportunity he'll polish the rust off.
The skipper got a good attacking win after he and his opponent had castled on opposite sides but then Dave succumbed only for Mike Barooah to force resignation when he was about to queen a pawn. This left John playing and whilst he was a piece up he was being pressured in position and time and lost his queen and game for a team draw.
Update at 23rd February
The Wirral team guaranteed their stay in Div 1 with a team draw against Wallasey 1 made up of 5 individual draws. Bob had only just made himself comfortable when his opponent seemingly with other things on his mind and exchanging every piece he could offered a draw and when accepted disappeared into the night. Other draws were more hard fought with Phil the last man standing and happy to accept the skippers advice that a draw was sufficient.
Members and readers expecting to see the 1st team result from last weeks match v Waterloo 1 should know that Waterloo cried off with one days notice as 'can't raise a team' and the consequences are as yet unsettled.
Progress has been made in the club championships. Gareth beat Kevin H to get top spot in Group B and Mike H beat Joe in the Q/F of the main Competition. The draw for the K/O stages is now on site. Bob Greaves and Andre have reached the S/F of the Challengers with wins against
Richard and Eddie respectively.
There has also been movement up and down the Ladder. Andre has reached the top albeit having lost twice with white but is being pursued by Rob Owens who has climbed 8 rungs to 4th. Full details are on the 'Ladder' page and Mike H asks that you check the rules especially re colours before playing.
The annual club outing to Blackpool will soon be upon us so I remind people who still want to participate and haven't yet booked their places to check the Blackpool Chess Congress site as a matter of urgency. A liking of Indian food and British Legion entertainment is desirable but not essential.
Update at 18th February
The 3rd team played bottom of the table Prescot 2 on Tuesday and, having regard to comparative gradings, got a disappointing result of a draw. The high spots were wins by Patrick, and Kevin G who maintained his 100% record for the team.
Mike Barooah has beaten John Grady in the Challengers' Trophy with John miscalculating a sequence of moves to lose a piece rather than win the exchange.
Update at 9th February
It was a busy night at the club on Tuesday with 2 matches and Club C'ship games.
The second team, bottom of Division 3, received Skelmersdale who were bottom but one. Dave Taylor had another early win followed by one for Duncan. Peter Brocklebank making a very welcome appearance on top board seemed to have a great deal of pressure against his opponent but the skipper was in difficulties with his queen trapped and having to be given up for a rook.On board 4 Andre had a material advantage and a strong pin on the opposition king. There then occurred an unfortunate incident when Andre's opponent quite rightly pointed out that Andre had stopped recording the moves with much more than 5 minutes remaining, and he was therefore claiming the game. This situation involved several people including both skippers and took time to sort out (in a way ) before everyone got back to their individual games. The skipper lost but Andre won over the board but in such a confused state that he had done nothing about catching up or continuing to record moves. John Grady then won on time(again !) but with a winning position enabling Peter whose attack had fizzled out somewhat to agree a draw. The team win will stand whatever the final decision on Andre's game and may well move them off the bottom of the table.
PS Skelmersdale have not pursued claim so 4.5-1.5 result stands.
The 440 team match v Prescot 2 was being played at the other end of the room . Prescot did well to win 3-1 with Rob Owens as Formby's only winner and a surprise defeat for Kevin G to add to those of Mike Barooah and Guy Hayton.
The Group C play off also took place and Phil emerged with wins against both Joe and Bob Greaves and Joe beating Bob.
At the previous weekend Stewart had a slightly disappointing appearance on board 6 of 8 for Trier in the Bundeslige losing and drawing in his two games.
Update at 2nd February
Two matches-two defeats, one probably expected but the other very disappointing.
The first team went to Atticus 1 missing Gareth and to face a team whose January grades all seemed to have increased over the previous 9months giving a 228 aggregate advantage.Your correspondent's evening was a disaster with a very early crushing. On top board Dave was also under much pressure with King trapped on H1 and with his opponent having a choice of rooks to capture with a pawn on the 7th rank and he surrendered when about to lose his queen and/or be mated. Joe and Kevin also lost but there were very good individual performances in the draws by Paul J, Bob, Phil with a 39 point deficit and especially Mike H with a 48 point deficit.
The 2nd team match v Waterloo 3 was very much a relegation contest and Formby's loss leaves them bottom of Division 3. Quite early on Formby went 2-0 down with defeats for Alan and Joe. At this stage Mike and Dave both decided attack was the only way forward. Dave succeeded and with John Grady then won in an end game and the score was 2-2. Unfortunately a minute or two earlier in eschewing a defensive move that would probably have forced a draw Mike had left himself open and went down to a very attractive disclosed double check and mate. This left Duncan but he was pawns down, with no chance of a win, and he resigned when his opponent was about to queen a pawn.
The playoffs for Group C finishing order are being played next Tuesday when the 2nds have a chance to redeem themselves against Skelmersdale
Update at 27th January
The one team match of the week all but guaranteed the Wirral team's stay in Div 1 for next season with a win over Wallasey 2 who were slightly under their usual strength. There was over 2 hours play before the first result , a draw for the captain. Other draws followed for Bob and Kevin before Dave's opponent was pressured into losing a rook and resignation. Although then Phil only required a draw when 3 pawns up for a team win his opponent felt obliged to soldier on with his only threat a back row mate. Careful play by Phil made the pawn advantage tell and gave him the win.
The group stages of the Club Championships are now all but concluded.
Bob Platt beat Mike Barrett to win Group 1 with Mike 2nd.
Gareth beat Mike Barooah to finish equal 1st in Group 2 and a play off against Kevin Howard.
Phil and Bob Greaves are equal 1st in Group 3 and may be joined by Joe for a triple play off.
Mike H drew with Rob Haseman to win Group D where Rob and Duncan may have to play off for 2nd place.
P S Joe beat Kevin last night so there is a 3 way tie in Group C
Update at 19th January
There has been only one team match this week with the 1sts receiving Wallasey A. With the departure of Enayet, Formby were slightly outgraded 1201-1281 and with both in the bottom half of the table a win would have been of great benefit. Dave at last played an error free game that pleased him applied steady pressure and won but Kevin lost and after several draws the match went to 3-3. Joe on bottom board played very well going into an exchange sacrifice to open up his opponent's pawn structure to get another win in the 1sts leaving Gareth as the last game to finish. Possibly tired from his 9 game period in Spain he could not get on top and lost to give Wallasey the team draw. With Aigburth 2 losing last night and remaining firmly at the foot of the table this was a satisfactory result for both clubs.
Update at 15th January (after 2 days in Keswick!)
Formby teams shook off the initial new year blues and performed well this week. The 2nds played Atticus 5, division 3 leaders, on Monday. David Taylor arrived 20 minutes late after circumnavigating Liverpool city centre but clearly it did him good as he was the first to finish and with a win. Joe went down to a very seasoned campaigner but Mike and Duncan got draws but with Eddie losing it was down to John Grady on bottom board to keep the team afloat. This he did pressurising his opponent into a loss on time giving a team draw.
The following night our 440 team were at the same venue and came away with a very good win helped by individual wins by Kevin G and Mike Barooah. Altho' Guy lost (see Atticus website for analysis of this game) Rob Owens held his nerve when a piece down to clear pieces and pawns
and force a draw.
Thursday night saw the performance of the week when the Wirral team played Wallasey in the Cup semi-final. Formby's team of 7 missing Bob Platt had an aggregate grade of 898 whilst Wallasey's original total of 1107 was reduced by the non appearance of their top board and and thus a very late replacement to 1054. Kevin H's early loss didn't help but Andre with a grade deficit of 33, and Eddie a deficit of 37, forced draws whilst Mike with a deficit of 38 received a very courteous resignation as his opponent was about to go a knight or possibly a rook down. Dave Williams played very adventurous chess against Martin Hargreaves who was giving him 43 grading points. He went 2 pawns down to initiate an attack; sacrificed a rook to continue it and had his queen en pris for the 3 moves it took to force mate with rook and 2 knights for a very entertaining finish. The time trouble on this occasion was that of John Grady rather than his opponent, possibly because of the differing time standard in the Wirral. This left Phil in an end game with Steve Lee of which he always seemed in control but of course Steve could not accept an earlier draw offer. In the end there was no alternative and indeed Phil may well have had a winning position but the 3.5--3.5 draw gave Formby the tie on countback.
Joe's new chess venture of Woodvale Chess Club with a venue at ST John Stone Catholic Church Club 7 Sandbrook Rd Ainsdale PR8 3RN got off to a good start on Thursday with several Formby players helping out. The Club is aiming to give enthusiastic players especially beginners
social games and practice whilst anyone wanting competitive chess will be made welcome at Formby. Joe's contact no. is 01704 574122
The Haslinger family trip to Seville concluded today. Gareth did play and there were 150 actual participants.
Stewart was graded 9th and finished with 7/9. This gave him equal 2nd place on points but 6th on countback. He won 1 drew 2 and lost 1 against fellow GMs.
Gareth was seeded 41and finished with 5.5/9 equal 35th and 53rd on countback and included a draw against a 2539 GM
Mike was seeded 137 and finished with 4.5/9 equal 95th and 113rd on countback. He started in the deep end with an opening game against a 2445 GM unfortunately lost .
Update at 6th January 2012
There was a very disappointing start to the new year with 2 resounding defeats in the first week.
Aigburth 1 gained ample revenge for the defeat of their 2nd team when they came to Formby and won 6.5-1.5 with no Formby winner and only draws by Gareth, Bob and Kevin.
This match also involved the last appearance of Enayet who is returning to Bangladesh. His connection to Formby chess has been very brief but much appreciated and should he return at some future date he will be made very welcome.
The Wirral team received Chester 1 last night. The Spirit of Atticus past has been reincarnated and gave us as much a shock as Scrooge had had, with a 4-1 defeat. Only Bob (152) with a win against Steve Connor (183) relieved the darkness.
I have already mailed members about Joe's new venture which may result in a new Chess Club in Ainsdale but further details can be obtained from his web site with access thro' this one
Stewart , Mike and possibly Gareth are due to play in Seville this weekend and next week. Stewart is defending his title from last year but is seeded only 9th with 18 GMs among the 200 plus playing. I think access to the site and possibly live games can be made via www.fsajedrez.com.
Update at 21st December
'Hope springs eternal ....'as Formby beat Prescot 4-1 in the Knotty Ash Cup to reach the Semi-final. As possibly one of two Atticus teams await them hope should be accompanied by prayer. On the night there was an early win by Eddie followed by one by Joe whose opponent made an unsound sacrifice and paid for it in the end game. Mike and his opponent were sparring for quite sometime with knights and opposite coloured bishops before a draw was agreed giving Formby the win. Dave then drew when his pressure could not last and John pressurised his opponent into trouble and a loss on time.
In the club championship Bob Greaves surprised yet another player when beating Joe who allowed a king and queen fork by a knight. Gareth and Kevin Howard played a hard fought draw and the competition is now reaching the end of the group stage. All outstanding games should be played by the end of January to avoid Mike H having to make 'sole executive' decisions!
I take this opportunity to wish all club members and any wider readership a very Happy Christmas and a Prosperous (chess playing) New Year. The club will next meet on Tuesday 3rd January 2012 when the 1st team will be at home to Aigburth 1. Matches in early January are scheduled as follows and a full list of matches in the 2012 part of the season will be on the club noticeboard on 3rd Jan.
Tuesday 3rd Jan --1st v Aigburth 1 home
Thursday 5th Jan --Wirral v Chester 1 at Wallasey
Monday 9th Jan -- 2nds v Atticus 5 away
Tuesday 10th Jan--440 v Atticus AWAY
Thursday 12th Jan-- Wirral Cup v Wallasey at Wallasey (home)
Tuesday 17th Jan-- 1st v Wallasey A home
Update at 17th December
Formby suffered defeats in both matches played this week.After whitewashing Littlewoods in the previous round Formby were saved from the same fate against Atticus by a draw by Gareth.
In the Wirral League Formby met a Chester 2 side which in the previous season had been Chester 1 only to be 'usurped' by the influx of a complete ex Atticus team who became Chester 1.
Two of the Chester team had played in the Open at the London Classic and were possibly tired.
Bob was able to draw and Phil won on time. The first match of 2012 will be against Chester 1!
The club will make their perennial challenge for a first Knotty Ash Cup when travelling to Prescot and the last club night of 2011 will be on Tuesday 20th December.
Nine members spent a very convivial evening for the Christmas night out with a meal at Zyka and fortunately this year it did not start snowing.
Update at 8th December
The Wirral team had the only match of the week and drew against Wallasey 3.There were draws on the bottom three boards where no player could exert enough pressure to win. The Wallasey skipper had received my agreement to swap his top two boards suggesting( possibly erroneously as it transpired) that Nick Martin was having a bad run on top board. There were thus 20 point differences each way between the players and the results went accordingly. Bob lost to Nick having had chances earlier on and Dave beat Phil Brine.
There were four club championship games on Tuesday. Mike H exerted pressure on Duncan and had positional advantage before Duncan lost a piece and resigned. Gareth always had the upper hand against Richard whilst Mike Barooah got into a very cramped defensive position against Kevin H and once he went the exchange down lost in the endgame when his king could not get involved.
The win of the evening was that of Joe with black against Phil. Joe was a pawn up when Phil swapped off rooks enabling Joe to connect his pawns and in a classic 5v4 ending was able to force a pawn through.
Update at 1st December
Three team matches were played this week with two possibly expected results and one pleasant surprise.
On Tuesday the 2nds entertained Southport 1 who arrived with a team materially outgrading the hosts and indeed with their bottom board higher than our board one. We started well with a win by Duncan and one by the skipper to counter losses on boards one and four. However we were not able to sustain our pressure and lost on five and six altho' John Grady battled long and hard before conceding.
On the same night the 3rds went to Hoylake where the same disparity also existed in grades and despite yet another win by Kevin Gilligan, who is going great guns, the team lost 1-5.
The following night the 1sts went to play Aigburth 2 who for whatever reason had lost their opening 5 matches and this a team who had won Division 2 in 2010 with a 100%record. Formby were without the Haslingers and Alfie Bowe Howard , but had Peter Brocklebank and the' top' two players from the second team replacing them. Joe (125) proved his worth with an early win against a 144 grade and Peter followed him soon after with a win against veteran Frank Barker.
Phil Fisher soon joined in the victories and Enayet was outplaying Steve Lee in a rook and 2 pawns v rook end game. Before he got his win however there was a strange occurrence on bottom board when Mike Barrett's opponent made a move with his bishop apparently pinning Mikes Queen to his King and promptly resigned before Mike even looked at the position. The Aigburth player seemed not to have noticed the pin and thought Mike's Queen could move immediately towards a mating attack! However analysis then showed that Mike could wriggle out of the pin with a rook sacrifice and carry through to mate. By this time Enayet had won so we were 5-0 up! Paul J then lost but Bob won in another long drawn out game v Dave Pearcey leaving Dave W to succumb to a massive attack and the team to finish 6-2 winners.
The Christmas night out will be on Friday 9th December starting at the Cross House pub between 7-30 and 8-00 and going on to the Zikha Indian (By M&S Formby) restaurant at 9-00 .
pm. Names to Paul Sutton please.
Update at 24th November
There were no team games this week and no surprises in the Club Championship games when Bob P beat Eddie, Kevin H beat Andre and Phil beat Bob G.
There have been two pieces of sad news this week.
Mike Haslinger's father has died and our sympathy is with Mike , Sandy, Gareth , Stewart, Toby, Cathy and Mandy.
The death of John McLardy at the age of 91 has been reported in the Formby Times. I am not sure that the paper will provide any more details of John's life in the village and his shopkeeping activity in Elbow Lane where Karen Parks now is. He was a Life Member of the Chess Club having served it well over many years as First team captain and also as Treasurer. He had played for Waterloo and the county but at Formby he was instrumental in persuading some local top class players including our current first team captain to play for us. He was also a very keen Correspondence chess player in the top rank in the country before computers were involved and he continued to play this form of chess well after he had retired from over the board games. His other passion was Liverpool Football Club where he was a shareholder and held a season ticket. Most weeks until he went into a nursing home 3or 4 years ago he would buttonhole me at his gate in Elbow Lane or in Pete Walton's newsagents shop to demand news of the chess club and discuss the real Reds' exploits, Pete being equally supportive of the Manchester kind. The funeral is at Southport Crem. tomorrow at 2-00 pm where the chess club will be represented.
P S at 25th Duncan and Mike Barrett attended the service at which John's chess playing enthusiasm was stressed.
Update at 18th November
The 2nd team are the only club side still to win after their narrow 2.5--3.5 loss at Wallasey last night. Eddie was beaten by veteran Frank Reynolds but DaveT countered with a win. Neither Mike nor Andre could make headway. Joe's slight advantage was not enough to force a win leaving the match in Duncan's hands. Unfortunately it was not his night and a two pawn deficit told.
Earlier in the week the 1st had all travelled on the train (with 7of the 8 on Old Age passes!) to play Atticus 2. Altho' strengthened by Enayet's presence the team were outgraded and it was going to be a close encounter. So it proved with 4 draws on the bottom boards. Phil thought for a moment that he might have the upper hand but ultimately had to settle for a draw when only the kings were left. Dave W had also drawn but Enayet had recovered from an inferior position to one in which his opponent's major pieces were stuck on the wrong side of the board and Enayet was able to control a mating attack giving us the lead. Mike H had also attacked strongly but been repelled so with a draw giving us the match one was agreed. Every team member should be proud of their contribution.
Club night was a hive of activity with 6 club championship games being played. Mike H gave Paul Sutton too much to think about whilst Gareth won a rook and the game in a classic quiz position when Andre was thinking he'd won a queen. Mike Barrett wore down John Grady and Mike Barooah beat Richard. Duncan and Rob drew but the win of the evening was that of Bob Greaves over Kevin Gilligan. Onlookers were all trying to will Bob into specific winning moves but he ultimately 'did it his way 'with only seconds left on his clock.
Update at 11th November
The John Ripley match was finally played and the large grading advantage added to by a default win was clearly emphasised with a 7-0 whitewash. Individual results are on the specific page.
On the same night the 3rd team beat Southport helped by a welcome return and win by Peter Brocklebank
There was one club championship game in which Andre beat new member Richard Potts.
Members there will have noticed that the Chairman and Booking Secretary of the Centre came to check on the noise level of the Zumba group and its effect in the classroom. Once the fire doors to the outside yard were shut as is required by fire regulations and despite its loudness in the foyer the level in the classroom is considered acceptable. It also stops by 8-30.
Last night the Wirral Team travelled into darkest North Wales to play Buckley and came home successful helped by wins from Mike and Phil and draws by Bob and Kevin. Dave did his bit by driving!
Last weekend Eddie and John Grady played in the Preston congress and some further detail is on the congress page
Update at 2nd November
Unfortunately having changed date and venue Litlewoods could not raise a team for the night so the John Ripley match has been postponed for a week to be played at Formby next Tuesday when there is also a 3rd team match.
3 games were played in the club championship. Mike Barooah I think surprised Andre with his play to win and Mike Barrett contained Eddie's pressure to force his own attack and resignation with mate in one. John Grady fought long and hard against multiple winner Bob Platt and was equal for all but the full 3 hours the game took, succumbing only with a couple of minutes to go. There has been a late entry in the competition with Richard Potts joining group B. Please see the specific page for draw details.
Some members are playing in the Preston congress this weekend and a report will be published next week hopefully with those of the John Ripley, 3rd team and Wirral team matches.
Update at 27th October
The club and 1st team welcomed Freshfield resident Enayet Hossain to its ranks for the match against Widnes 1. Unfortunately his presence did not prevent another 6-2 defeat in which the silver linings were Gareth's win against a seasoned congress player and Joe Dilworth's draw against a higher graded opponent.Joe had clearly been encouraged by his joint 3rd place with 4/5 in his section of the Scarborough congress. He reports that he met and chatted with Peter Willoughby there and Peter does miss the camaraderie of the Formby club.
The 1st team have a John Ripley cup match next Tuesday at home rearranged from the following night. This is against 5th Division side Littlewoods so attacking play is the order as there must be at least a 5.5-0.5 win to cover the handicap deficit and the skipper of course has first offer on the one draw.
The Wirral team match due on 31st October has been postponed at the opposition request.
I remind all entrants that the club Championship group stages should be well under way and games should be played as soon as possible.
Update at 21st October
Of 3 matches due only 2 were played this week. After last week's noise problem at Waterloo this week the 440 team arrived to find the room booked for something else and a communication 'cockup' meant no prior warning.
On Tuesday the 2nds received EEC whose top 3 boards were strong but skipper Mike Barrett thought we stood a chance with our bottom 3. It almost turned out that way. Mike himself played on top board and almost pulled off a surprise in a very exciting game. Unfortunately he chose the wrong attacking option when faced with 3 or 4 alternatives and the time taken cost him the win. Joe and Alan lost also, but Duncan pulled one back . Dave T drew so the match was lost when Andre won in a somewhat disputed time scramble following an illegal move and visitor spectator intervention.
Last night the 3rds went to Wallasey to play an evenly matched team and a draw was the result.Rob's early win was countered by losses from Mike and Paul whilst Alan lost after a hard contest. Eddie and his opponent got caught up in unaccepted draw offers but ultimately with very little time left Eddie got a very good win to draw the match.
In the Unive congress (see 7th October) after 7 rounds Stewart is equal 2nd in the Open with 5.5 and Mike is mid table in Amateur 1 with 3.5
PS at 22nd After both lost in the final found of 9, Stewart ,ranked 7th, finished 9th with 6 from 9 and Mike ranked 39th finished 40th with 4.5 from 9. Malcolm Pein in today's Telegraph was very complimentary in his analysis of two of Stewart's earlier games
Update at 13th October
The club were unbeaten in their 3 matches this week but pride of place goes to the 440 team who beat Prescot 1 3-1. Prescot's aggregate grade was 423 against Formby's 361 including 2 possible generous estimates of 80. Skipper Kevin G led the way with a win on top board followed by Adam on board 3. Mike Barooah then won to give the team win and whilst new member Guy Hayton lost he did not go down without a fight and the experience can only be of benefit.
The previous night the Wirral team had received Pensby in the cup and it was clear that the extra 2 players required presented more difficulty to Pensby than to Formby who were able to welcome back Peter Brocklebank and who gave Formby the first win. Others followed and at the end Formby had achieved a whitewash of 7-0 Including ones by Eddie P and new member John Grady on boards 6 and 7.
Last night Formby 1 travelled to Waterloo with a weaker team than had been envisaged at the beginning of the season. Even with a late substitute on board 4 Waterloo outgraded the visitors and if we think that Zoomba dancing in the next room is noisy try having a rock band at full blast in the room below. However after a draw by the skipper wins by the two Mikes, Barrett and Haslinger gave Formby an early advantage and both could be pleased with the tactical combinations that led to opposition resignations.Whilst Phil drew, losses by Dave, Paul and Joe left us 3-4 down with Gareth to finish against the substitute who altho' fighting hard could not counter Gareth's advancing pawns and had to give way.
One club c'ship game was played this week in which Rob Haseman and Paul Sutton drew.
Update at 7th October
The 3rd team began their league campaign in Div 4 with a home match v Prescot 2 and got a hard earned draw. Losses by Andre and Patrick with draws by Eddie and Rob left the skipper and Kevin Gilligan to decide the team's fate and both did exceptionally well to win. The club still awaits a first victory in the new season.
It has been necessary to amend the club's players' listings with the enforced absences of James and Mike Fraser. All listings in the Merseyside league are now on the designated page.
Stewart and his Dad are playing in Holland from 15th to 22nd October in the Unive congress with a live website at www.univechess.nl
Update at 2nd October
The Wirral team began their campaign with a hard earned draw away at Hoylake. Dave W agreed a early draw v Dave Tebb followed by draws by Bob and Phil. Mike scraped a draw when his opponent concentrated her forces in winning pawns on the queen's side whilst he attacked her king. Whilst his attack could have fizzled out when he lost a knight he got a draw by perpetual as his opponent made an error of judgement. This left the match dependant on Kevin H who held on for a draw despite his opponent having a pawn on the seventh rank.
The 2nd team's match v Skem due to be played on Wed 5th October has been postponed due to Formby's current listed player problems. The 3rds will still play at home on Tuesday.
Update at 21st September
Playing Atticus 1 with our strongest team would have been a struggle but with a weakened side the result was not in doubt when after two hours Formby were 0-3 down. Kevin and Gareth salvaged draws and the silver lining was a win by Paul altho' it has to be said that his opponent missed a mate in two whilst allowing Paul's king to retreat to safety.
The first game in the Club championship produced a not easy win for Eddie against new member John Grady.
There was also a game in the Club Ladder competition with Andre beating Kevin Gilligan. May I remind members that the Ladder gives opportunities for competitive graded games against fellow members whom you might not normally play. Full details are on a separate page and on the noticeboard.
Update at 15th September.
The first match of the season ended in a disappointing draw for Formby 2. The comparative grades suggested we should win despite a necessary player substitution on board 2 after a non arrival. We started well with early wins by Dave T and the skipper who defended well in the unusual opening of his opposite number and was able to hit back when Jim overreached in his attack. Kevin did well to draw but after 2 losses it was left to Paul J on top board to hold on grimly and use his time effectively to negate any threat and force a draw for himself and the team.
John Grady is a new member to the club and Adam Roberts has rejoined so both are now in Club c'ship Group A This group alone has been redrawn and colours may now differ from original. Please see specific page
Update at 8th September.
Unfortunately it has been necessary to postpone 1st team match from 8th Sept. .2nd team start next Tuesday at home v Waterloo 3.
Update at 1st September 2011
The new season has started with The President's 'Cakes and Ale' tournament in which 14 members took part and which was won by Gareth with Rob Owens 2nd and Phil and Dave W equal 3rd. The treasurer was also pleased at the attendance but in September will be seeking subs of members yet to pay. The opportunity was also taken to distribute some of the awards won last season.
The draw for the group stage of the 2011-12 Club Championship has been published.but Mike H will be pleased to receive additional entries if contacted by 30th September at the latest.
Update at 26th August 2011
I have now put the M'side league fixtures for the 4 teams on their individual pages and captains will finalise starrings next Tuesday when we are back at Ravenmeols with a 7-30 kick off. It would seem that all clubs are now up to date with their financial obligations as both EEC and Liverpool are included in the playing schedule. If not the 2nd team will have 2 less matches. We have 5 divisions plus the 2 grade limitation sections.
Waterloo now play on a Wednesday at a new venue and Prescot also have new premises (see their websites). Formby have 3 matches listed for Tuesday 29th November so may have to rearrange one.
Formby are playing Littlewoods in the John Ripley on Wednesday 2nd Nov and have to overcome a 4.5 handicap deficit in a 6 board match. The Knotty Ash team have a bye until mid December.
The Wirral team start on Tuesday 27th September with a match at Hoylake followed by a cup match on Monday 10th October.
The Haslingers are at present in Holland playing in the BDO congress with some live coverage which can be accessed via the International page of the ECF site.
Update at 12th July 2012
"David Williams reports from the MCA Committee that a flurry of late
entrants means that there should be 36 teams next season, one more
than last year. The league structure can therefore remain largely
unaltered, except that Division 4 will increase from six teams to
seven. Formby 1 remain in Division 1, and Formby 2 and 3 receive
their due promotions to Divisions 3 and 4 respectively. Southport
have entered a second junior team, in Division 5, and their first
junior team will play in Division 4. However, they have agreed that
only the Division 5 team will receive the concession of playing only
at home, and with a one hour limit, so it's normal chess for all of
There are eight entries for the new 600 league, and Formby are one of
seven in the 440 league. It was felt that two rounds of matches was a
bit too much, so there will be one round, i.e. six matches for our
All provisional at this stage, in particular as matters with the two
clubs in arrears with subscriptions are not resolved. Some money has
been received, and it appears that the issues are more to do with
agreeing amounts than unwillingness or inability to pay. But if the
arrears are not cleared by the start of the season they will not be
permitted to play."