Dream Sunday for Europchess in Round 2:
In Round 2, Europchess continued its good performance at home. While E1 and E3 scored together 7,5 / 8, only E2 had to give in with 1,5 – 2,5.
The first team faced with FCH Zottegem 1, a solid team with an ELO average of around 1750. On board four, Joszef Barta played with black an exchange Slav against Eddy de Gendt. He started early piece play on the queenside without castling. The opponent stroke back and opened the centre with e4. Joszef kept cool by playing Ke7, and even took back on 18. Bxf6+ with Kxf6! After a number of exchanges the position looked only slightly worse for White. However, rather than entering a Queen endgame with a pawn down, White resigned with only a few seconds for his last moves before the time control: 1-0 for Europchess 1! Tom Wiley on board one played a calm positional line with White against Frank Roos, arriving at opposite coloured bishops, rooks and queens on the board. While he exercised powerful pressure on the queenside, the opponent sacrificed his remaining bishop on g3 to get some counter-play against White’s King. Tom defended accurately and got a Queen/bishop vs. Queen ending. However, Black had drawing chances, if he could have eliminated the remaining white pawns. Fortunately, Black allowed Tom to advance his last trump-card to g5, where the clever pawn even supported the Queen for a nice mate at h6: 2-0 for Europchess! On board 2, Frank Hoffmeister gained a better position with Black after some tempo-losses of Gunter de Weird in the opening. Shortly before the time control, Frank pocketed in two pawns, which led to an easily won ending with rook/bishop and 3 pawns vs. rook/bishop one pawn. White resigned shortly before move 60. 3-0 for Europchess! Jenö Czuczai played on board 3 with White a closed strategic game against Filiep van Driessche. White dominated the board and got good winning chances when he advanced his king-side pawns, but Black defended cleverly. With both kings being rather vulnerable, the game ended with a draw through perpetual check. Final result: 3,5-0,5, just as in the first round!
With Nivelles 1 the second team had a hard nut to crack with an average of around 1800 ELO. Nicolas Rauta on board one was peacefully minded and granted a grandmaster-draw against Christophe Pauwels after the opening. In return, Jens Frederiksen on board four showed a strong fighting spirit. Unfortunately, Jens overlooked small combination and lost a pawn in the otherwise rather dull opening. His opponent, Philippe Abbeloos then converted his extra-material in the ending, making the other two players playing against the wall. Raymond van Melsen on board two played his Sicilian system with Black against Santiago Vivone. The latter pressed for the most of the game and was a worthless double pawn up. However, Raymond invaded the White position and made a full point out of the ensuing complications: 1,5-1,5. The remaining game between Colin Gilbert and Patrice Marchal on board three saw Colin losing a pawn in the middle game through a pin on the e-file. However, he reached a rook ending, where the active position of his rook and his King vs. a cut of Black king on the 8th rank seemed to secure a draw. However, being under time pressure with less than two minutes for the game to close, a wrong rook retreat allowed Black to queen one of his remaining pawns. In exchange Colin got a rook and the h-pawn. While this might be a draw with enough time on the clock, Colin did not withstand the final pressure and had to resign. A somewhat unfortunate 1,5-2,5 war hence the final result.
The third team played Humbeek 4 with players between 1600-1300 ELO. On board one, Pere Moles Palleja got an early advantage in an English opening and then won a pawn. However, his opponent Jelle Peppermans played actively and a Black rook seized the 2nd rank. Nevertheless Pere’s two bishops remained stronger and he won a piece somehow. The ending was lost for Black who continued some 30 senseless moves before giving up. 1-0 for Europchess 3! On board three, Thomas Brinkmann faced the Tarrasch defence in the Queen’s gambit from Eric Van Nocken. Thomas nicely opened up the centre and a threatening White pawn marched to d6. Moreover, White could use the open e-file against the uncastled Black king, ensuring a convincing win for Thomas: 2-0 for Europchess. Kristian Pade Frederiksen on board 4 tried to seize the advantage in an exchange-French defence with black. Although he blundered a pawn in the early middlegame, Christian was able to organise piece play against the White King. Entering into White’s position with a rook on the Kingside turned the tables and Kristian’s come-back was crowned with a full point: 3-0 for Europchess. Finally, José Maria Ramos Florido played a strong Sicilian with black against Jonas Wouters. José Maria’s impressive pawn machinery with e5, d5 gained space and disorganised White’s pieces. The opponent got more and more into a passive position and was bluntly outplayed. 4-0 for Europchess!
E1 and E 3 are now leading their respective divisions, while E 2 is somewhat behind.
Text: Frank Hoffmeister
Pictures and captions: Milan Pein
At 2:00pm the games have started (click on the running video to see in original size):
Some of our opponents failed to make the time control at move 40 (click on the running video to see in original size):
Later on Tom has faced the following position which amazingly should be a draw, but Tom managed to win that:
The computer evaluation is -4.00 for Black. Resigning was a correct decision:
Jozsef played with the Black pieces. In the following position White should have played e4 and have some edge. Instead he played Ra2?! and later failed to make the time control and lost (see on the video above).
Thomas had a strong passed pawn and won the game in style.