B Team Slump to Disappointing Defeat

Shrewsbury B’s league season got off to a bad start with a heavy 4-1 reverse at home to Telepost C.

Despite looking a close match on paper, with board four featuring two players with identical gradings and just one point separating the players on board two, the visitors took control of the match early on and never really looked like relinquishing their grip on the match.

Things started badly for Shrewsbury when new captain Matt Best dropped the exchange and a pawn in a promising position against Charles Micallef, leading to his resignation ten moves or so later when Micallef forced multiple exchanges to leave him with a clearly won position.

Things then started to look up when Andrew Lewis scored a creditable draw against James Kingston on board 5, leaving the match relatively close heading into the final half hour.

However, Dan Lockett succumbed to Peter Crean’s pressure on top board before Mark Smith’s defeat at the hands of Crean the younger (Vinnie) secured the points for Telepost, having dropped an exchange in a similar fashion to Best in a reasonable position.

The final game to finish was on board three, with the wily Norman O’Connor sacrificing a piece in order to get some pressure against John Westhead – it paid off as he was able to get a draw as the clocks ticked down.

Shrewsbury B 1-4 Telepost C

  1. Dan Lockett 0-1 Peter Crean
  2. Mark Smith 0-1 Vinnie Crean
  3. Norman O’Connor 0.5-0.5 John Westhead
  4. Matt Best 0-1 Charles Micallef
  5. Andrew Lewis 0.5-0.5 James Kingston

Changes Ahead of New Season

At last night’s Annual General Meeting, several significant changes were made ahead of the new season.

Firstly, David Everington, having served as A Team captain for a long period of time, had announced last summer that he would like to step down after one final season. Jamie Hopkins agreed to take on the responsibility on the condition that B Team captain Dan Lockett would play this season for the A Team (a player short since early last season) on a full time basis.

That created a vacancy for the B Team captaincy, which Matt Best indicated a willingness to take up. This follows on from Best’s promotion from the C team to the B team earlier this summer, but in turn left a vacancy for a fourth regular player in the C team.

Therefore, club president Fred Harris confirmed that he would be prepared to return to playing regular league chess having taken a two-year break if it were to be of assistance running the full three teams for this new season.

On top of a reshuffle of the teams and captaincy, it has been confirmed that the club will shortly move into new premises (on the same site). Directions will shortly be available, and the club understands the new premises are a touch smarter than the current training suites we are using.

The club has also indicated that it is planning to buy some new equipment ahead of the new season, which will hopefully be available for the first game.

New Fixtures Published

The fixtures for the 2012-2013 season have been published, with both Shrewsbury B and C teams starting the campaign at home.

Shrewsbury C kick off the new season with three consecutive home games, against Wellington B, Telepost D and Newport C in a new-look third Division that, with the addition of two new teams this summer, has gone from the smallest of the divisions to the largest with 9 teams.

The B team kick off their promotion challenge with a home game against Telepost C before a lengthy trip to recently relegated Ludlow in the second match. They will close the season with a tough double header against Priorslee Lions B and Wellington A.

Meanwhile the A team’s title challenge begins on the road, with a trip to Priorslee on the opening day followed up with another trip to Telford against Shifnal and Telford A.

The full league fixtures can be found on the Shropshire Chess website, and the season’s fixtures for solely each of the Shrewsbury teams can be found on their respective pages on this website.

AGM Date Confirmed

Shrewsbury Chess Club has confirmed that its Annual General Meeting will be hosted at the Club’s venue at the Training Suites for the Shelton Hospital on Friday 7th September, starting at around 7:45PM.

If there is sufficient interest, there will be the traditional 5 round lightening tournament after the A.G.M for which people can sign up on the night.

We would like to encourage as many members as possible to attend, and please send their apologies if they are unable to attend.