Dunfermline vs Grangemouth A, 29/10/18
Ian Robertson 2045 ½-½ Uby Archibong 2194
Jamie O'Connor 1664 0-1 Alan Bell 1991
Calum Smith (c) 1612 ½-½ Graham Hamilton 1976
Gonzalo Ferero 1434 1-0 David Wallace (c) 1756
Gordon Greig 1396 ½-½ Duncan Glassey 1720
Dunfermline 2½ - 2½ Grangemouth A
Dunfermline had white on boards 2 and 4.
The late Alan Clark MP's family had an expression for the unpredictability of life: "ACHAB" - anything can happen at backgammon.
ACHAC too, as we have another unexpected draw for Dunfermline against stronger opposition.
On Board 1 Uby as white had pressure on Ian's kingside and e6 pawn in particular. The momentum of his attack then reduced but Uby kept going when consolidation was probably called for. Ian achieved a draw by perpetual check (delivered by Uby) to avoid the loss of the first player's queen.
Jamie as white unfortunately allowed Alan to equalise fairly quickly. He was then outplayed, losing an exchange. A brave attempt.
In my game against Graham - a sort of Evans Gambit Declined - I felt I had good central activity and was going to go one or maybe two pawns up while maintaining that activity. I offered a draw on the 21st move which Graham accepted. A bird in the hand, after all.
Board 4 provided the first win of the night. A classic d4, c4 start for Gonzalo with white. In a very close game black was one pawn up but white managed to recover and thanks to the strong white bishop on c3, and a rook on the 7th rank, took victory as mate was on the way.
Post-match analysis in the pub revealed that Dunfermline's Gordon Greig rode his luck. Against Duncan's Sicilian Defence Gordon became short on time for the first control at 30 moves. An inspired b4 push tried to lure a bishop away which would allow perpetual check using one mobile and one static rook. It didn't work at first, but eventually the bishop was drawn and so was the game.