Aberystwyth A and Cardigan A are neck and neck at the top of the Dyfed League at the end of a long season; everything will depend on the last two matches, to be played next week, Aber A against Carmarthen and Cardigan A against Aber B. On a less exalted level, the two clubs’ B teams met at the Emlyn Cafe on 19th May, and it was close here too. Julie van Kemenade tried hard to finish off Tony Haigh with queen for rook and bishop and her clock running down. After one move he gave a groan, and Julie, looking as one does in such positions for a clever fork or mating trick, missed the reason: he had left the bishop en prise. She took a chance to draw soon afterwards. There was no such excitement on Board 2. Players of the French are used to the challenge of trying to make the exchange variation interesting; against Awne Osinga, I tried a system I’ve used with some success on the internet, but the game soon petered out into a draw. Tony Geraghty also got nothing out of his London System and went in for a speculative exchange sacrifice to try to make something happen; unfortunately the thing that happened was a winning attack by Howard Leah. On fourth board Ian Finlay, playing Black in a Sicilian, took advantage of Roland Spencer’s loose position and centrally placed king to launch a successful counterattack. The match was drawn 2-2.

Julie van Kemenade – Tony Haigh ½-½

Awne Osinga – Matthew Francis ½-½

Tony Geraghty – Howard Leah 0-1

Roland Spencer – Ian Finlay 0-1

Two more of the outstanding games in the Club Championship have now been played, resulting in wins for the van Kemenades, though the lower graded players Ian Finlay and Jamie Friel were able to make them work for it.

Ian Finlay – Rudy van Kemenade 0-1

Jamie Friel – Julie van Kemenade 0-1

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