A “Bodley” team – with the aid of four subs from the O’Sullivan B – picked up a battling draw in Inchicore last night.
Lorcan was first to finish; playing through a fever, he pushed his g, h pawns to gain space but once his e-pawn fell a blizzard of forks put paid to his chances.
Ben on the other hand fought off an attack to set up a nice knight fork tactic and then was pushing his pawns to victory when his opponent gave up his last piece to another knight fork and resistance ended there.
Danny went from having a big attack, to winning a piece, to playing on the edge as regards back-rank mate. In a Q, B+4 v Q+4 ending, his opponent pinned Danny’s bishop on the back rank which meant he couldn’t prevent a pawn promoting. Strangely his opponent promoted to a rook and immediately exchanged the rook for Danny’s pinned bishop leaving the game level on material but with Danny having an advanced a-pawn. His opponent then played and claimed a threefold repetition ending the game but they played on, Danny escaping the repetition at the cost of his a-pawn. Nonetheless a pawn down Danny played on, winning two pawns around his opponent’s king, and swapping into a 2v1 endgame which he converted with accuracy. But the post-mortem confirmed that the position had repeated and been correctly claimed, and so a draw was the final result. FIDE rule 9.2 notes that the game is drawn upon the correct claim of a third repetition, and even if play continues, the game is over.
While all this was going on, Thomas on 2 had weathered a dubious piece sacrifice and won an exchange to leave him a rook for a couple of pawns up. In attempting to prevent Thomas taking control of the centre of the board, his opponent missed a nice mate in two and we had the lead 2.5-1.5.
Cal had to retake on f3 with his g-pawn and from there was under pressure, and ultimately the only Bodley player on the night wound up losing his game. So we ended up drawing a match which, on another day and with a full squad, we could have targeted a 5-0 win – but a draw wasn’t a bad result for what was effectively the O’Sullivan Bs! And it does put us, for now, top of the table, albeit with a game more played. Next up is one of the promotion favourites, Malahide.
[Thanks to Brendan for the report!]