The Bells Allegro
Saturday the 9th July 2005
The hottest day of the year and Wallace and Burns
have stuck us inside the Polish Club playing Chess.
The idea was to raise some money for new sets and clocks.
Prizes were donations from the players and Sandy Bells.
34 players turned up in what turned out to a very
enjoyable day starting at 1pm. finishing at 8pm.
Some of the players who stuck around for the prize giving.
The tournament produced a 3 way tie.
Keith Ruxton, Neil Berry and Elliot Sloan.
Johnny Marr presented the prizes, bottles of rare wine.
Lindsay McGregor and Bill Faulkner
who won the grading prize.
Mike Wallace, Robert Burns and Polish Club Manager
(who gave up his Saturday afternoon) - Marek Straczynski.
Look who got paired together me & Jannic (a draw).
These two are squaring up to each other
like a couple of Sumo Wrestlers.
Before the start of play downstairs.
Before the start of play upstairs (where the drinkers hung out)
Keith Ruxton v Alan Minnican
I asked prior to the start for any games
so I could upload them to this site.
This request was met with the usual response
and I got none. However I heard one of the
Dragon players saying that Alan Minnican
was full of praise for Keith's play in the following game.
So after the event I asked Keith about the game
and without the aid of a board he wrote down the
score on a piece of paper.
The game in question. Keith is hiding face
in embarrassment after opening 1 Nf3.
Later, that night in Bells, Keith went over the game on my pocket set
(whilst it was still in my pocket - me and Keith are good friends).
So though I only got one game, it's a cracker.
Let us use the game for some tactical instruction.
The following position has these key features.
Hot spots, tender squares, potential loose and
over worked pieces. Can you see them? White to play.
The tender square is g7. The hot spot is g6.
The loose piece is the Bishop on e6 as the
overworked f7 pawn is holding both e6 and g6
Getting any ideas? Yes 17 Bxg7!! hxg6
18 Rxe6 and if 18...fxe6 19 Qxg6+ mate on g7.
What Keith had to see was Black refusing
the Rook sac when Alan played 18...Kh7
Here Keith uncorked his main idea that started
with 17 Bxg7!! he played 19 Rae1. That's
why there are two exclams on move 17. 19 Rae1
had to be seen. Here Keith admits he did not
see how it would go from here but felt he
would have enough for the Rook sac to mate
the Black King.
This is one thing that cannot be broken down into
neat classifications like loose piece, hot spots etc.
It's called Intuition.
It's something all good players have. It's not a gift
it comes after hours of studying and solving
tactical positions like the one above and knowing
that a Queen and Rook can usually kick an exposed
King into a mating net.
The main line goes...
19.Rae1 fxe6 20.Rxe6 Rg8 21.Rxe7+ Kxh6 22.Qc1+ g5 23.Qc2 Rg6 24.Qf5
and Black has to give up the Queen to stop the mate.
Alan's a good player and his intuition judged the White attack
after 19...fxe6 very dangerous. So he sought solace in an ending
and gave back the piece. But the exposed King and Keith's
active pieces proved too much of a handicap. In the final
position there is no perpetual and mate on g7 is unavoidable.
[Click here to replay the game]
Keith Ruxton v Alan Minnican
1.Nf3 c5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 exd5 5.d4 Nc6 6.g3 Nf6 7.Bg2 Be7 8.0-0 c4 9.Ne5 0-0 10.e4 Nxe4 11.Nxc6 bxc6 12.Nxe4 dxe4 13.Bxe4 Qb6 14.Re1 Be6 15.Qc2 g6 16.Bh6 Rfe8 17.Bxg6 hxg6 18.Rxe6 Kh7 19.Rae1 Kxh6 20.Rxe7 Rxe7 21.Rxe7 Qxd4 22.Re4 Qd5 23.Rh4+ Kg7 24.Qc3+ f6 25.Qe3 Rd8 26.Qe7+ Kg8 27.Rh7
And without this lad the whole thing would never got started.
Dave Archibald who controlled the whole event having to run
up the down stairs (the tournament was held in two rooms).
This is Dave at the prize giving - he looks shattered.
The next event to be held at the Polish Club is the
25th year anniversary of the birth of the Dragons.
I'll be there. I was actually the first Club Champion of the Dragons.
Jannic & Donald Heron are working out a date and the details.
I have just been mailed this link from Chris Mckay in San Francisoc
Give it a go - it's weird.