Aberystwyth scored an excellent result in WCU Online League on Thursay 11 November, beating the top-ranked team of Pontyfenni. On top board, Rudy van Kemenade played the little-known Schallopp Defence against John Waterfield’s King’s Gambit (at least, it is little-known by me, and on the evidence of this game looks well worth exploring) and a sharp game was initiated, which ended abruptly when White overlooked Black’s threat of mate in one. A great result for the team but disappointing from a neutral point of view as the game could have been fascinating. Adam Watkin-Jones had a spatial advantage in a blocked position against Ian Jones’s Philidor by transposition; when Black’s king was denuded of pawns White looked to have winning chances, but exchanges brought about a difficult queen ending and Adam settled for the draw in view of the team’s favourable position in the match. Julie van Kemenade had a solid and active position with her King’s Indian against Alan Keene, with chances for both sides, when White, under time pressure, gave away a piece. Sam Holman’s game against Justin Morgans was a typical cut-and-thrus Najdorf Sicilian with the players attacking on opposite wings and both missing opportunities to win before White took control in the queen ending. The match finished as a 3½-½ win to Aber.Aber’s Tom Gunn also had a fine result playing for Steynton against Richard Williams of White Knights. Dominating the board against Black’s Old Indian Defence, Tom gradually focused all his pieces on the king to force a mating attack.

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