On Friday 31st Jan, Hammer Hodgson took on Morley College in London League Division 5. Although we managed to retain our *unbeaten* run, our perfect record of wins was ended as we barely escaped with a 2-2 draw.
Reminiscent of those football matches where one team gets a player sent off in the first 5 minutes, we had begun the evening with high hopes and Morley on the back-foot after defaulting their top board due to a late withdrawal of one of their players. 1-0 to the Hammers.
However, straightforward wins were not to be the theme of the night, as Morley staged an improbably comeback in the remaining games.
On Board 2, Rahulan was having a tricky game, under pressure in the opening after an early attack in the Goring Gambit and then reeling after his opponent uncorked 6.Bxf7, disrupting his Kingside castling, regaining his sacrificed piece and building a dangerous initiative. Showing typical hammer grit, Rahulan managed to trade Queens, fight back and equalise, but made a mistake later in the game. 1-1
On Board 4, Javier, playing his French Defence, had a pleasant positional advantage over his opponent for most of the game, but just couldn’t find the decisive hammer-blow to end resistance. In the efforts to press for a win, he somehow managed to allow his opponent to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. This is a story that happens to us all. 2-1 to Morley.
Nick Rutherford on Board 4 played his customary English opening, won a piece with good tactical vision early on, and then never let his opponent back into the game, grinding out a good result. 2-2
It was probably a fair result, as we didn’t fully take our chances, but East Ham have now caught us at the top of the league. Our set of games are likely to be crucial if we want to stand a chance of promotion this year. So, please let me know if you are available in our fixtures across March, April and May.
Our next match is on 19th February against Football Radar. If you haven’t already done so, please let me know if you would like to be considered for those/any fixtures coming up:
- 19 Feb – Football Radar, Citadines 18:45
- 4th Mar – Kings Head, Citadines 18:45
Onwards and upwards!
Other crucial remaining fixtures:
- 7th Apr – Battersea (Cats), Battersea Labour Club 19:30
- 6th May – East Ham, Citadines 18:45
- 27th May – Hackney, Citadines 18:45