Rugeley Chess Club

Old Club News From 2014

Old News from 2014

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22/12/2014 Sutton Coldfield v Rugeley, Cannock League Division 2

Board 1 - Marek Sozynski 0.5 v 0.5 Tony Meakin

Tony was considerably out graded but put up a valiant effort against a strong opponent. After initially offering after a draw after 16 moves which his opponent declined Tony played on solidly before the spoils were eventually shared. Solid performance.

Board 2 - Noel Brown 0.5 v 0.5 Gordon Attwell

Gordon managed to open the c file and gain an invasion point for his rooks. His capable opponent hid his king on the opposite of the board and with both monarchs safe a draw was agreed. Gordon again showing what a reliable member of Rugeley chess club he is.

Board 3 - Jan Chudzinski 1 v 0 Steve Heath

Steve playing a non English speaking Polish national huffed and puffed but gained no clear advantage. Again, going awry in time trouble he resigned one move before being mated with twenty three seconds left on his clock. A tough struggle but still an enjoyable two hours spent.

Board 4 - Rob Mank 1 v 0 Dave Hadley

Dave playing an opponent with an estimated 40 point grading advantage managed to gain a rook. However his opponent managed to equalise and eventually force a win in a queen and bishop ending. We've all been there and know if Dave persists eventually the tide will turn.

Despite the 3-1 defeat the result could quite easily have been reversed. An enjoyable evening all the same. Thanks to Sutton for their hospitality.

Steve Heath, Cannock League Division 2

17/12/2014 Telford v Rugeley, Wolverhampton League Division 2

After having celebrated the club's Christmas meal the night before, it was time to stop telling cracker jokes and get serious.

Board 3 Christopher Lewis v Rob Fell. After last week's performance, Rob was hoping to continue a good end to this year. His opponent was no pushover, and Rob declined the first offer of a draw thinking he could get a win, but in doing so, nearly lost the game. Rob conceded that a draw was the final outcome.

Board 6 Roger Brown v Mike Page. Mike was at first 10+ minutes ahead on time and had 2 lovely bishops in contrast to his opponents knights, no-one is sure if Mike fell asleep during the game, but unbeknownst to him, his flag fell the move before the time control, Mike really was puzzled that he lost on time.

Board 4 Steve Tarr v Catherine Hiley. The Scotch opening, was played with white suprisingly castling long. Catherine never castled, and proceeded with vigour to push the queen side pawns with great effect against the white King, gaining the exchange in the process. From there on in, it was just a matter of time and Steve resigned.

Board 1 Trevor Brotherton v Dave Amour. This was the only board where Rugeley outgraded their opponent (but only by 5 points). The Ruy Lopez was played, and few errors were played resulting in a tactical draw.

Board 2 Nathaneal Paul v Matt Carr. Matt isn't adverse to a challenge, but the 19 point grading difference was perhaps too much for Matt who unfortunately made a mistake that cost him the game.

Board 5 Richard Thompson v Tony Meakin. Tony felt that he could have won his game. Perhaps he was distracted by Mike jangling his coins in his pocket, (his opponent certainly was). Tony fought to the end but eventually resigned.

A well fought match that could have had a different outcome on another night. Thanks to all who played.

Catherine Hiley, Wolverhampton League Division 2

09/12/2014 Halesowen A v Rugeley, Wolverhampton League Division 2

Rugeley made the long journey to Halesowen, and it has to be said the captain wasn't too optimistic about gaining any points from this team.

Board 2 Malcolm Hunt v Rob Fell. Rob's game was looking like a disaster in the opening, he was materially down quite early on, but Rob fought on and managed to get an unlikely (and ambitious) counter-attack going on, both Rugeley's boards 1 & 3 were now getting very distracted from their own games wondering if there was a mate opportunity with knight, queen, and pawn combo as Malcolm's king was forced out into the open. Rob sensing he was up offered the draw which was duly taken, perhaps there was a forced win?

Board 1 Stewart Fishburne v Dave Amour. Dave was prepared for a tough match, and seemed to have the advantage over his 193 graded opponent, white had the better position. Dave was happy to offer the draw, and Stewart didn't complain in accepting.

Board 3 John Edge v Catherine Hiley. I purposefully went for the Alapin version of the Sicillian, hoping that this line might be a little helpful, unfortunately it's better for black in almost every situation, and this game was no different. I tried a flank attack attempting to weaken his kings defense but it was a futile plan, oh hum, back to the sicilian defence drawing board!!

Board 5 Adrian Priest v Gordon Attwell. I didn't think Gordon was in too much trouble, but being outgraded by 23 points a defeat for the Rugeley player made it a tough game. It looked like Halesowen had the match points from here.

Board 6 Logan Gregory v Steve Heath. I never had the opportunity to speak to Steve about his game, but he looked to be struggling. Steve tried to put up some resistance but it was in vain in the end.

Board 4 Dale Jackson v Tony Meakin. Tony again battled hard but was a having a torrid time of it, seemed to be the situation for all the Rugeley players from board 3-6, he was the last to finish and his lost game made no difference to the overall result.

A very impressive performance from the top two boards prevented the match from being a whitewash. Thanks to all who made the journey.

Catherine Hiley, Wolverhampton League Division 2

25/11/2014 Rugeley v Tamworth, Cannock Division 2

We were heavily outgraded on every board apart from board 4 on this match with Tamworth even fielding a 181 player who actually used to be 213 for many years ( for their top board. Despite this we still came away with a draw which was a fantastic result so well played everyone.

Board 1 - Rob had a very strong opponent and although he looked likeley to lose on paper, unfortunatley he did lose very very quickly after going astray in a very sharp opening. The game can be seen here - Phil Briggs v Robert Fell

Board 2 - Gordon Attwell v Peter Oliver. Again Gordon was outgraded but playing with the white pieces Gordon put his strong opponent under pressure right from the start, only sure defence moves kept Gordon out of the King side attack, following a forced Queen exchange the game went into a fair draw conclusion.

Board 3 - Steve had the black pieces on board 3 which I think was some kind of closed Sicillian defence. A draw was the eventual outcome in this game but with only 3 points diffefrence in grading that seemed a fair and likeley result.

Board 4 - Karl was the star of the match winning on board 4 and neutralising their board 1 win to draw the match, well played Karl! This game can be seen here - Karl Blanks v Chris Harrington

Some photos from the match can also be found here Match Photos

Dave Amour, Cannock Captain November 2014

18/11/2014 Rugeley v Rushall, Cannock Division 2

With some players struggling to make the match due to work commitments (but I suspect that the international football friendly may have played a part!) everyone played a board higher than expected and anticipated a tough night ahead.

Board 4 - Conor Verschoyle v Keith Butler - Conor didn't offer much resistance in this game, perhaps playing a little too quickly. The Rugeley youngster buckled under the pressure of being material down and lost.

Board 3 - David Hadley v Shane Cooksey - David was at a 48 grading point disadvantage, but he didn't let that worry him, he enjoyed the challenge but in the end the Rushall superior play ended all hopes of salvaging the game.

Board 2 - Mike Page v Roger Threlfall - Again Mike was playing an opponent who had a 28 grading point advantage, but Mike is on good form, and played very well to secure an unlikely draw.

Board 1 Tony Meakin v John Grant - Tony was always going to find it a challenge playing an opponent graded 144, and despite being material down Tony battled ferociously to neutralise his opponents advantage, and did very well to draw.

Catherine Hiley, Stand-in Cannock Captain November 2014

18/11/14 Rock Cup/ Club Championship competition,

It was a busy night at the club, most players we're involved in some competitive chess this evening .

Steve played white against Andrew McCumiskey, Steve knew it was going to be a tough gameso he opened with b4, which got him out of the opening relatively unscathed and gave Andrew a really good game. Steve enjoyed the game but eventually the gulf in grades began to show and Steve lost.

Catherine played white against Bill Hulley, it was Bill's first competitive game in a while, and played the Sicilian defence, Catherine seemed to have the advantage but Bill played a cracking counter-game thrusting a pawn which looked like he had won a piece. Catherine lost a lot of time trying to combat this but managed to defend well enough to thwart the attack, but was in so much time pressure as a result that Bill won the game.

Catherine Hiley, November 2014

28/10/2014 Rugeley v Mercia A, Wolverhampton League Division 2

Rugeley welcomed Mercia A, hoping not to miss our regular board 1 Dave too much.

Board 4 Tony Meakin v John Phillips. Tony was still a little 'chessed-out' from the weekend, after 20 or so moves, the game had slumped into a neutral battle ground and they both agreed it had resulted in a draw.

Board 1 Matt Carr v Peter Thompson. Unusually this game had ended rather quickly for Matt, who had a look of bewilderment about how he had just lost. Fritz will hopefully enlighten the situation.

Board 3 Catherine Hiley v Ken Francis. I seemed to have the upperhand throughout the game, however I failed to see an obvious piece advantage. The ensuing swapping off led to a draw.

Board 6 Gordon Attwell v David Webb. I didn't get to see much of this game, but Gordon was happy to accept a draw.

Board 2 Rob Fell v Derek Perks. This was possibly the match of the evening, full of twists and turns, it certainly had tension! Derek seemed to be in control with material superiority, but Rob fought back and tactically seemed to get the end game perfect.

Board 5 Patrick Waller v Barry Smith. Patrick had the advantage in this game piling lots of pressure on Barry's king, at one point Patrick thought it could be drawish after some commendable defending from his opponent, but continued to battle on to get the win for the team.

A good performance from the team who all had to step up a board on the night.

Catherine Hiley, Wolverhampton League Division 2

24 - 26/10/2014 Rugeley go to Scarborough Chess Congress,

Five Rugeley club members took up the opportunity to play in Scarborough's 2014 weekend congress, 5 games over the weekend. It was a grueller of a contest, 356 players concentrating with a beautiful view of the sea at the Spa Centre. Matt scored a very respectable 3/5, and Catherine managed to claw back a few points 2/5 in the intermediate section.

Tony managed 2.5/5 in the Minor section. Mike stormed to 3 successive victories only to crash on the Sunday to stay at 3/5. Conor managed to stay focussed for his final game and pulled off some elaborate moves to checkmate his opponent in style, and came away with 1/5.

It had been an intense but enjoyable weekend of chess, Mike's anecdotes of past adventures kept us entertained throughout the weekend, and Catherine managed to relax with a bottle of vodka. Happy days!

Catherine Hiley, October 2014

14/10/14 Rock Cup competition,

2/3 Rugeley members played their individual Rock Cup competition tonight.

Catherine played a junior from Wolverhampton, Lewis Clarke. To his credit he played a solid game and gave me a tough game, I came out well to draw in the end. I'm hoping for another tensely fought game in the return match.

Steve played Mike Groombridge, and Steve seemed to be on top most of the game having at least a piece advantage, Mike played to the end, but couldn't stop Steve. A good performance, from Steve well done.

Catherine Hiley, October 2014

08/10/2014 Rugeley v Cannock, Cannock Division 2

We fielded a mixture of experienced and new players for our outing against Cannock. Cannock were too good for us though but it was a good opportunity to field test some less experienced players including Craig for whom I think this was his first scored game so well played everyone and thanks for a good effort.

A copy of the scorecard can be found here - Cannock v Rugeley Matchcard

Board 1 - Matt Carr v Tony Meakin - Matt played a tricky Budapest Gambit ( and before too long Matt had a good advantage and Tony was unable to offer too much resistance.

Board 2 - Ray Dolan v Steven Heath - Ray played an English and Steve played a symmetrical variation. The game very quickly became very drawish looking and indeed a draw was soon agreed after 20 moves or so.

Danny Torbica v David Hadley - I believe this was a Bishops opening and Danny managed to beat David eventually.

J Carr v Craig Walker - This was a quiet Bishops opening too and Craig defended well until he made a silly move around move 40 costing him the game.

Dave Amour, Cannock Captain October 2014

17/09/2014 Stourbridge B v Rugeley, Wolverhampton League Division 2

Rugeley set off to Stourbridge with a non-playing captain watching proceedings, after pulling up at the record secretary's house we then arrived at the correct venue!

Board 1 Dave Amour v Steve Jukes. Dave had a slow build up in the opening whilst his opponent was pushing pawns down either flank, Dave stopped Steve from castling, thus hemming him in, it was poetry in motion as black tried to open up. Dave's central dominance was overwhelming and finished first with a win.

Board 2 John Foxall v Matt Carr. A very cagey, slow game, only playing 14 moves in 100 minutes! Matt was feeling a little uncomfortable but then started to settle, at first Matt refused the draw but his opponent negated any opening files that Matt was attempting and eventually the draw was accepted.

Board 4 Paul Sharratt v Tony Meakin. This started off as an unconventional queen's pawn opening, Tony seemed to struggle developing his pieces, but it looked fairly even. Unfortunately an undefended bishop on the side of the board, was Tony's downfall and with material down Tony resigned.

Board 3 Eric Horwill v Rob Fell. Rob was playing a decent game, and although he had double isolated pawns, he was a pawn up most of the game and seemed to maintain the advantage, however his opponent was defending well and Rob couldn't make the extra pawn count, after many many moves a draw was agreed.

Board 5 Dave Scriven v Gordon Attwell. Gordon also had double isolated pawns but he was the exchange up and took control of the game fairly early on. Gordon was able to keep his rook very powerful in the end game, and deservedly won the game. Dave Scriven jokingly commented that he should be dropped from the next match.

Board 6 Jeffrey Humphries v Karl Blanks. This was Karl's debut appearance for Rugeley, you can view his game, which isn't entirely accurate but is roughly how it happened. It was very nearly a huge upset for the Stourbridge player.

A decent performance from Rugeley banking another valuable point, thanks to all who played.

Catherine Hiley, Wolverhampton League Division 2

09/09/2014 Rugeley v Rushall, Wolverhampton League Division 2

Rugeley kicked off their Wolverhampton league campaign with a strong line-up against Rushall.

Board 5 Patrick Waller v Keith Butler. Patrick had a pawn up in the majority of the game but couldn't find the breakthrough he needed and a draw was the final outcome.

Board 3 Rob Fell v Roger Threlfall. Rob seemed to struggle throughout his game, never seeming to gain control, his king ended up being exposed and Rob resigned after seeing an unstoppable winning combination for his opponent.

Board 4 Catherine Hiley v Shane Cooksey. A very cagey start for the Rugeley captain, Shane played a very defensive game and it was hard to gain a significant advantage, struggling to keep her advanced pawn defended it looked like a draw. On reflection (ie Fritz) it was probably a win if Catherine had been more aggressive.

Board 1 Dave Amour v John Grant. The last time John played Rugeley he was on board 5, now on board 1 he feared the worst. However he played solidly against Dave, Dave was a pawn up but it was a doubled pawn and therefore the game dwindled into a draw.

Board 2 Matt Carr v Steve Wilcox. Matt is always up for a challenge, and he was licking his lips at this encounter. His new board 2 status held no fear as Matt centrally attacked with everything he had, and Steve had to concede in the end.

Board 6 Tony Meakin v David Jarvis. Tony stepped in to play at the last minute and had a good game, however there was no distinct advantage and a draw was accepted by Tony to secure Rugeley's first point of the season.

A satisfactory performance, thanks to everyone who played.

Catherine Hiley, Wolverhampton League Division 2

02/09/2014 Rugeley v Lichfield, Cannock Division 2

This was the first match of the season and my first match acting as captain of the Cannock League and was a very interesting encounter.

Rugeley managed to scrape a win by the closest of margins thanks to some careful play by Gordon in a winning but difficult position. The final score was 2.5 to 1.5 with game details as follows.

Board 1 - Patrick Waller (125) v A Fraser (128) - Result: Draw

This was a tarrasch french defence where Patrick's opponent unusually used up about half of his time on the first few moves. He did however at least come out of the opening with a strong attack. Patrick had a very passive position for a while but eventually found some counter play on the f file and avoided a fork losing the exchange to reach an opposite coloured bishops ending. A pawn up, his opponent initially refused the draw but then, a few moves later, by which time material was level and the queens were off, he offered one and Patrick accepted.

Board 2 - Gordon Attwell (124) v J Fryer (110) - Result: Rugeley Win

Gordon's game could be called the great escape, only dogged thoughtful defence clawed back a win. The game was a 52 move 2hour 40 min trudge where Gordon only made two moves in the opponents half. A nervous knight sacrifice turned out to be the losing move for black. Gordon calculated it wasnt going to come off for black and fortunately was right. Time ran out for black in the end and so he resigned giving the match to Rugeley.

Board 3 - Steve Heath (120) v M Lever (105) - Result: Lichfield Win

Steve gained an advantage out of the opening with a really nice bishop move but his opponent played himself out of trouble. Steve declined to exchange Queens which on reflection was maybe a bad decision. Steve unfortunatley lost a piece in time trouble and had to resign. Steve certainly didn't play terribly but struggled under time pressure which led to the piece loss blunder.

Board 4 - Mike Page (111) v A Hall (105) - Result: Rugeley Win

Mike's game was a Phillidor defence where Black quite simply played some very dubious moves ending in a big blunder giving his queen away. The game was over very quickly, I'm sure it was longer but it only seemed about 10 minutes. Well played Mike.

Dave Amour, September 2014

29/07/14 Walsall v Rugeley, Wolverhampton Summer League Division 2

Reluctantly this match had to be defaulted as there were insufficient players available to play the match on Thursday. So Walsall win by default.

Mike Page, July 2014

15/07/2014 Rugeley v Brewood , Wolverhampton Summer League Division 2

Rugeley welcomed Brewood for their final home game of the Summer League tournament, and decided to play a welcome Italian visitor on board 4.

Board 1. Catherine Hiley v Mark Keady. Catherine ended up in all sorts of problems and her opponent was material up but had missed a couple of opportunities to really finish off the game. Trying to force the advantage, he missed Catherine’s sneaky mate. Very fortunate win for board 1.

Board 2. Patrick Waller v John Fenby. Patrick may have had a slight advantage in this game, but John managed to squeeze out a draw.

Board 3. Tony Meakin v Mike Jarocki. Tony seemed to have an advantage that he let slip and then had an interesting end game, where time pressure limited best play. Tony unfortunately lost.

Board 4. Giuliano Rinaldini v Stephen Micklewright. According to Giuliano he played a poor opening, wishing to avoid the French.. however in doing so he gave up the centre of the board with his pawns and struggled to gain control of the game. Our Italian visitor appreciated the match opportunity but was disappointed with his result. E' solo un gioco.

Mike oversaw proceedings, but luck seemed to have been spent with Catherine’s win and the team lost 1.5-2.5.

Mike Page, July 2014

11th July 2014 - Fixtures 2014-15

Rugeley's fixture's for the upcoming season are now uploaded, see fixture tab for details.

Catherine Hiley, 11th July 2014

8th July 2014 Rugeley v Stafford, Wolverhampton Summer League Division 2

Rugeley welcomed their neighbour's Stafford, only to find they were a player short.

Board 1. Patrick Waller v Ken McNulty. Patrick ended up with the exchange up, only to find that all his pieces were valliantly defending on the back rank, after much thought, a draw was agreed.

Board 2. Tony Meakin v Kazik Wozniak. Tony's recent run of form gave him confidence going into this game, he played well, but his opponent played with stealth, and blockaded any real threat, a draw was the outcome.

Board 3. Steve Heath v Andrew Leadbetter. Steve was on the attack, but failed to spot a sneaky but very effective counter-attack, the bishop pinning Steve's queen to his King. Can't win them all!

Board 4. Mike Page v Default. Mike is becoming quite proficient against Default, Default had no game plan and so Mike won.

A satisfactory performance, thanks to all who played.

Mike Page, Wolverhampton Summer League Captain.

2nd July 2014 Bushbury v Rugeley, Wolverhampton Summer League Division 2

Rugeley's captain had a spring in his step as Steve managed to commit to play at the last minute, only to find that Bushbury only had a 3-man team, so Mike sat out his game and watched the mayhem commence.

Board 1. Jeremy Whitehead v Catherine Hiley. Catherine went wild and sacked a rook (in honour of Mike sacrificing a game) it really wasn't a well-calculated plan, and threw everything at Jeremy's isolated king, luckily for Cath her opponent blundered as much as she did resulting in a queen v rook and knight finish. The troubled game ended in a fairish draw with perpetual checks.

Board 2. Simon Jones v Tony Meakin. Simon has faired well against Rugeley in recent years so Tony played the Sicillian, in a hope to open up the game. His plan worked as there was a sneaky knight check exposing Simon's undefended rook, there was no way back and Tony had secured Rugeley's first summer league win.

Board 3. David Buckley v Steve Heath. David played to the bitter end to draw out a very resignable position, Steve was 4 passed pawns up, and with patience and solid play finally beat his opponent.

Board 4. Default v Mike Page. Mike was unaware that Bushbury only had 3 players having phoned them the previous evening.

Much better performance, special thanks to Steve for playing at the last minute.

Mike Page, Wolverhampton Summer League Captain.

23rd June 2014 - Rearranged Fixture WDCL div 2

Walsall agreed to postpone the forthcoming Walsall match to later on in July due to commitments to the fixtures meeting.

Mike Page, 23rd June 2014

16th June 2014 Rushall v Rugeley, Wolverhampton Summer League Division 2

Rugeley were forced to travel to Rushall with only 3 players, so the odds were already stacked against us.

Board 1. Steve Wilcox v Tony Meakin. Tony gave Steve a good game but in the end lost to superior play .

Board 2. John Grant v Mike Page. Mike lost, there's no more to be said.

Board 3. Roger Threlfall v Dave Hadley. Dave managed to go the whole distance in this game, and although he didn't win, he gave it his best shot.

Board 4. v default. .

Another whitewash :(

Mike Page, Wolverhampton Summer League Captain.

10th June 2014 Rugeley v Wolverhampton, Wolverhampton Summer League Division 2

Rugeley faced their first opponents of the Summer.

Board 4. Dave Hadley v Lewis Clarke. Dave looked as though he had a draw on his hands and had played a steady game until the end, a draw looked likely but the Wolverhampton youngster managed to conjure a clear advantage, which gave him a win.

Board 1. Catherine Hiley v Peter Griffith. Catherine played carefree and perhaps too carefree as what appeared at first were open lines ended up being gaping holes in her defence. Peter missed a few golden chances but with calm play he secured another victory.

Board 2. Tony Meakin v Geoff Rosser. Tony played solidly in this game and a draw seemed justified, unfortunately a momentary lapse in concentration and Tony moved his King into a checkmated position.

Board 3. Mike Page v Gordon Sands. Mike played a decent game but miscalculated a piece and was material down, and under time pressure, a bad combination, and despite a hearty attempt at a stalemate, Mike had a resigned look.

A disappointing result!

Mike Page, Wolverhampton Summer League Captain.

22nd May 2014 WDCL AGM

Catherine attended the Wolverhampton AGM in my role as President, and Tony also attended to help with Rugeley's proposal to replace the current time controls with;

'1. The use of clocks shall be compulsory, and the time limits shall be one of the following options:- (1) 30 moves in 65 minutes, followed by a 15 minute quickplay finish. OR (2) if both teams agree before the start of the match, 36 moves in 75 minutes, followed by 28 moves in the next 60 minutes, followed by a 15 minute quickplay finish.

2. In matches played to the time limit in 13.1.(2), both captains may agree to change the first time period from 36 moves in 27 minutes to 42 moves in 90 minutes.' The proposal was ACCEPTED. It was a highly debated issue and was met with a lot of hostility, so we may see another time control proposal in the next AGM.

Telford were welcomed back into the Wolverhampton league, division 2, having had assurances from Richard Thompson that they will honour their fixtures.

Defaulted matches will be heavily penalised after a proposal to deduct 1 league point and another league point if 24 hours notice has not been given in an away match. 2 extra league points deducted for a home game.

Catherine Hiley 23rd May 2014

13th May 2014 Rugeley's AGM

Having had a good season we decided to field a Cannock team in league 2 instead of 3. Subs remain at £22 adults £11 for children and that includes ECF bronze membership. The club unanimously were in favour of the proposal to finish the match on the day and to stop adjournments as the current time default.

Catherine Hiley 13th May 2014

8th May 2014 - Summer League Fixtures WDCL div 2

We have decided to put a team forward for the Wolverhampton Summer League, unfortunately Dave Amour and Rob Fell are inelligible to play, please look at the fixture list for dates. There are only 6 games to play and it's a good way to keep the competitive chess going now the season is over. Mike Page has kindly volunteered to captain the side.

Catherine Hiley, 8th May 2014

6th May 2014 - End of Season Blitz Tournament

After the success of the Christmas tournament we decided to continue with the handicap system, to make the play a little more challenging for the likes of Dave Amour (I'm not convinced he found his 3 mins v 17 mins that difficult!). The games were frantic and lots of fun with definite wins turning into losses (not mentioning anyone inparticular). Perhaps the highlight was when Conor did a somersault around the room when he beat me on time. I may never hear the end of it! The tournament was warmly received and a great success thanks to the tournament organiser Matt Carr. Huge thanks to him for a really entertaining evening. Special congratulations to Mike Page who was rewarded on 1st position with a bottle of bubbly, who only just pipped Dave Amour and Patrick Waller.

Catherine Hiley, 8th May 2014

22nd April 2014 - Club Championship Final Game

The second club championship game was played with Tony having the white pieces. Dave used his old trusted weapon the Grunfeld defense which he has played for over 20 years so it was a comfortable choice. I think Tony mixed up systems - white normally plays Bc4 and Ne2 or Nf3 and Be2 but Tony mixed these up leading to an uncomfortable middle game position in which he exchanged two minor pieces for a rook and pawn which didn't work out well but I can't help feeling that Tony did this out of force rather than choice. After that it was a comfortable game for Dave made easier by Tony completley missing a threat to win his queen.

The game can be seen at Tony Meakin v Dave Amour.

Dave Amour, 28th April 2014

9th April 2014 Bushbury v Rugeley, Cannock League Division 3

In the last game of a good season for Rugeley. The division 3 team went to Bushbury with a chance to win the title. The captain selected the team which had played most of the season.

Board 1. Jeremy Whitehead v Tony Meakin. The grade of both players was closely matched and the game was no different. The Rugeley captain developed well and put pressure on his opponent and in defending pawns did not advance past the 6th rank. After dominating the centre Tony won a pawn and with the match at 1 each and his remaining colleague in a winning position he offered a draw. This was refused. After swapping pieces and still with a pawn advantage he pushed the pawn, then realising he had left his opponent a drawing chance the Bushbury players suddenly resigned.

Board 2. Simon Jones v Steve Heath. A positive start by Simon saw him attack with both Knights. Steve weathered the Storm, doubled this Rooks and attacked the castled King under pressure Simon lost the exchange, so with an exchange and a couple of pawns advantage Steve pushed on. However, in the excitement left a Rook en-pris. The game ended in a draw with Knight verses pawn.

Board 3. Sam Bentham v Mike Page. Youth v Experience. The Bushbury player was very keen and attacked from the start. Mike appeared to be under pressure and a pawn down and was then faced with a pinned Rook. Undeterred and with ‘open lines’ Mike pushed his passed pawn with a check and mate was forced two moves later.

Board 4. David Buckley v Rob Matthews. Rob stated this was “one to forget”. I guess he got his seasons mixed up and, thinking it was Christmas gave David a piece early on and although he tried hard, David is an experienced campaigner and there was no way back.

Match finished Bushbury 1.5 – Rugeley 2.5.

Tony Meakin, Cannock League Division 3

8th April 2014 - Club Championship Games

A trio of club championship games were played tonight with Gordon and Rob Matthews finishing off their games so that now Pool B have completed 100% of their games.

The final also got underway with game 1 of Dave Amour v Tony Meakin which was actually their first long play game together. Dave played an overly agressive reply to Tony's modern/pirc defence in which Tony failed to find equalising chances after which it all became too much. It was a brave stand by Tony though so well played.

Dave Amour, 8th April 2014

25th March 2014 Rugeley v St Georges, Wolverhampton League Division 2

Unfortunately St Georges phoned to default the match, they couldn't get a team together. We therefore win 6-0, and establish third place in the final table.
Many thanks for everyone's contribution this season, the team has deserved 3rd place, we've proved to be worthy competitors in this division.

Catherine Hiley, Wolverhampton League Division 2

27th February 2014 Wolverhampton v Rugeley, Cannock League Division 3

After a number of problems in trying to select a full team which was under the grading limit, the Rugeley captain was faced with a choice to play with only 3 members or rearrange the match to a more suitable date, with alternative dates not being available, Rugeley went to Wolverhampton with just 3 players.

Board 1. Geoff Rosser v Tony Meakin. The game itself was a rematch of a game in the previous season. It was an entertaining game with both players having chances which then resulted in a number of swap-offs. The end of the game saw both players having a passed pawn but neither could force it home and a draw was inevitable.

Board 2. Steve Wilson v Steve Heath. Going on from a successful season so far, Steve took control of the centre quite early and steadily increased the pressure on his opponent's castled King and trapped him in the corner with 3 pieces, and the game was complete.

Board 3. Paul Walters v Mike Page. This was a steady game, both players developed by the book. The game was quite even with no material advantage to either side. Mike maintained that he had a prominent attack but could not make the decisive breakthrough. A draw was offered and after consultation with his captain Mike accepted the draw.

Board 4. Barry Lewis v Default.

The match was drawn 2 all, a good result with 3 players.

Tony Meakin, Cannock League Division 3

18th February 2014 Rugeley v Rushall, Cannock League Division 3

Board 1. Patrick Waller v Manpreet Sangha. Patrick anticipated a tough game as he battled on as black in the Kings Indian, it looked very drawish for a long time. Patrick made it hard for his opponent and as the time limits neared, unfortunately for Patrick, he lost a well-fought game.

Board 2. Tony Meakin v Keith Butler. Tony never really seemed to gain an advantage in this game, fairly evenly matched grade-wise and materially, a draw was agreed .

Board 3. Mike Page v Josh Hennion. Mike had a get out of jail card in this game, Josh ended up with a rook up, and looked very comfortable, but had he done his homework he should have known Mike loves sacking a rook, and he did. Now 2 rooks down Mike happily declares a draw by perpetual check with the queen. Josh must have been upset by the outcome!

Board 4. David Hadley v Peter Greenwood. David was feeling good after his last win, and went for an all out flank attack with his army, his opponent tried to defend but in doing so blundered a rook away, and the ensuing onslaught meant David continued his winning ways.

The match was drawn 2 all, a fair result in the end.

Tony Meakin, Cannock League Division 3

11th February 2014 Rugeley v Cannock, Cannock Chase Cup

Board 1. Rob Fell v Ray Dolan. Rob was playing well in his game and appeared to be on top until he blundered away a piece in the end, wasn't an obvious error but sadly it lost the game for Rob.

Board 2. Catherine Hiley v Matt Carr. This encounter was eagerly anticipated, it's always a frantic scrap of aggressive play and after the 10th move it was over.. for Cath, totally missed an obvious Bishop trapping the queen.

Board 3. Tony Meakin v Craig Horobin. Rugeley's captain is having an unpredictable season so far, but Tony seemed to have a comfortable win as Craig lost a piece early on in the game.

Board 4. Steve Heath v John Carr. Carr senior was hoping for a game like his son Matt, and he was, but in reverse. Steve won his game with speedy efficiency.

The match was drawn 2 all, but as agreed at the start the bottom board is eliminated until there's a positive result, in this case Cannock proceed to the final.

Tony Meakin, Cannock Cup Captain

4th February 2014 Rugeley v Boldmere, Cannock League Division 3

Board 1. Catherine Hiley v Sandy Wilson. Evenly matched on board 1, Catherine played an unconventional Scotch opening which left Sandy pinned back with relatively few options but to swap off. Sandy was in some time trouble at the end, but with good end game play managed to force a draw.

Board 2. Tony Meakin v Arthur Kent. Tony seemed to struggle from the opening onwards in this game, giving away a pawn. Tony tried to hang on but his opponent piled on the pressure and eventually Tony resigned.

Board 3. Steve Heath v Geoff Harman. Steve threw the proverbial kitchen sink at Geoff's central backward pawn, and in the end Steve managed to break through with a good advantage to seal another fine win.

Board 4. David Hadley v Michael Carrington. This game had it all, moments of good chess, moments of pure madness, pen leakage, forgetting clocks, putting just one clock back 20 mins but not the other, stopping the clocks and completely illegal moves. David should have lost, but he decided to win instead, ensuring a team victory.

Tony Meakin, Cannock League Division 3

30th January 2014 Lichfield v Rugeley, Cannock League Division 3

Board 1. John Fryer v Tony Meakin. This was an open game where the Rugeley captain attacked from the beginning and the Lichfield player assisted by opening up the king side in trying to develop a Bishop. However Tony was unable to make the breakthrough. Then with his knight attacked the Lichfield player, picked up the wrong piece and Tony had an advantage a piece for 2 pawns. This was also the advantage at the end but with the evening progressing a draw was agreed and the win secured.

Board 2. Charlie Brown v Steve Heath. In a game involving two experienced campaigners, Steve always seemed to have the edge and when the home snaffled a pawn Steve managed develop his rooks to attack 3 of his opponents pieces in defending this attack and others which followed Charlie had to sacrifice a huge time advantage which proved to be his undoing.

Board 3. Simon Smitton v Gordon Attwell. Didn’t see much of this game, but a steady performance by Gordon. Although initially well matched, as the game went on the pressure increased on the home player until he eventually crumbled.

Board 4. Roy Smith v Rob Matthews. This was a close encounter which both players agree ebbed and flowed. In a fierce encounter the pieces were swapped off at regular intervals, leaving very little left on the board. However, the pawns remained resolute. The Rugeley played seemed to fashion a 5-3 advantage but this could not be sustained and after losing the initiative the game then followed.

Tony Meakin, Cannock League Division 3

28th January 2014 January grades are published

The grades have been updated to the January published list, however, the original grades will still take precedence in the WDCL.

The grades can be found in this website of course or at

Catherine Hiley

27th January 2014 Rushall v Rugeley, Wolverhampton League Division 2

Rugeley played in arctic conditions against a strong Rushall team.

Board 6 Shane Cooksey v Steve Heath. Steve was again first to finish his game his opponent tried to thwart Steve's attack but failed to do so, and Rugeley clock their first win of the match.

Board 4 Roger Threlfall v Tony Meakin. Tony had a real battle on his hands in this game having had a poor opening, the struggle continued and he finally admitted defeat to his opponent who had a 24 grade point advantage.

Board 2 Richard Parker v Rob Fell. Rob was disappointed with his performance, it was a cagey affair, but his opponent enforced the swap off once he was a pawn up, and the end led to an inevitable queening his passed pawn, and Rob resigned.

Board 3 Steve Wilcox v Catherine Hiley. It's always an interesting game with Steve and this match didn't disappoint, click on the game.

Board 1 Manpreet Sangha v Dave Amour It was nice to have Dave back on board 1, it was another solid performance, take a look.

Board 5 John Grant v Matt Carr. This game went down to the very last second, it was a drawish looking match with 10 mins left for both players, it was an entertaining display as Matt had mate threats, but his opponent was materially up. Had Matt had a few more minutes, I think the outcome may have been different, however he sadly lost on time.

A good drawn result, thanks to everyone who played and braved the very cold temperature.

Catherine Hiley, Wolverhampton League Division 2

15th January 2014 Boldmere St Michaels v Rugeley, Wolverhampton League Division 2

Rugeley played their first match of 2014 without their board 1, who had to drop out due to illness.

Board 5 Sandy Wilson v Steve Heath. Steve was first to finish his game with a prompt draw, which was a great result considering an almost 20 pt grade difference.

Board 1 Andrew Lake v Catherine Hiley. I haven't got a good track record against Andrew, and being unexpectedly thrust onto board 1, I was feeling edgy. Lots of pieces were forced off the board and it looked drawish until I foolishly gifted a pawn.. an inevitable victory soon came for my opponent.

Board 2 Leo Tsoi v Patrick Waller. Patrick also stepped up to board 2 and was bitten by the Dragon against the youngster. It was always going to be a tough game, and Patrick suffered his first defeat of the season.

Board 4 Michael Harrington v Matt Carr. Matt was firing on all cylinders tonight, prepared for battle, and sure enough a beautiful passed pawn gained a much needed win for Rugeley.

Board 5 Loxley Bennett v Tony Meakin. My knight in shining armour (well perhaps without the armour) came to my rescue and avoided a likely defaulted board. Tony could do no wrong, and indeed, he did very well and won, his opponent lost on time.

Board 6 Malcolm Phipps v Mike Page. This epic battle went on for a long time, I left before the adjournment was agreed. Despite Mike being 2 pawns down, there seemed little advantage for his opponent who eventually agreed the draw.

A fantastic drawn result, thanks to everyone who made the journey in the downpour, to Patrick for stepping up to board 2, Matt for stepping in as captain, and of course Tony who stepped up to the plate at the last minute.

Catherine Hiley, Wolverhampton League Division 2