The Bodley last night got the club’s 2015/16 season underway with an excellent 3½-1½ win in Bray, who finished last season in 11th place in the BEA.
That said, the game nearly didn’t happen at all after I was blocked in in the school car park, and got the car’s undercarriage and sump stuck on the kerb while taking the only route available – over the grass. Unable to go forward, the only option was to reverse and try again over the pointed apex of the kerb – which fortunately worked, and the season was underway.
The Bodley have a tough start to the season, facing the two sides relegated from the BEA in the first two rounds. Given we only avoided the drop on the last day last season, our aims for those first couple of games were modest! Bray/Greystones’ board 5 out-rated our board 1 – but that wasn’t reflected at all in the match. Des picked up the first point in little more than an hour, his opponent playing Qf6 twice in the first seven moves, and ultimately Des won a knight on the same square which was pinned to the queen and over-attacked.
Shortly after, Liam picked up an exchange and ultimately converted the win – but things weren’t looking great on the other three boards. Cal was a pawn down with doubled, isolated c-pawns, Ben was piece for two pawns down and Luke-Andrew had gone from being a pawn up to a pawn down. But we managed to turn it around – Luke-Andrew’s opponent hung an exchange, which was nicely returned a short time later in return for a mating attack. Ben suffered defeat, but Cal’s opponent agreed to a draw, giving us a 3½-1½ win.
It would be typical if, after five years of trying to get promoted from the Bodley, we managed to do it twice in a row! But though there’s a long way to go yet, next week’s game against Dún Laoghaire will at least tell if there’s a chance of at least a promotion challenge.