Friday, September 19, 2014

Near miss

That's just about right, even at this distance.

I thought I was following the theory (and knew about Geller) but in fact the theory, according to John Emms' Tarrasch book from 1998 had 12...O-O? and recommended taking the c4 pawn instead - not, in truth, that that's much better.

I was living in Newcastle at the time and went on the train, via Glasgow. The last stretch is spectacular, winding through the mountains, and the train stopped at at least one station for much longer than normal, as if it was exhausted, with the passengers getting out to stretch their legs and inhale either fresh air or cigarette smoke according to their taste. I remember one guy had his Tartan Army gear on and had obviously been at Wembley two days before when Scotland had come pretty close to hauling back the two goals they were down from the home leg.

I came pretty close myself, though as far as I recall, despite playing on top board in the last round I ended up without a penny to show for it. But that wasn't so important.

I do remember that when I resigned, I looked up and there seemed to be dozens of people clustered around the board. Up to then I'd not noticed a single one of them.

Here's a couple of playthroughs. I can't remember if we even had playthroughs in those days. It was a whole different millennium. I used a different forename. And many things were different then.

The past, if nothing else, is a different country.


Anonymous said...

A footnote really, just to show it isn't just RDK who has columns ghost written.

That shows the move order as being the slightly rare 3. .. a6 variation rather than an a6 move in an otherwise regular c5 Tarrasch.

Steve Mannion had played the line before, in the 1988 Scottish Championships.


Anonymous said...

I'd managed to blank the football from my mind. I don't remember much about the chess either, but Sloop was there so he probably got the details right. The train station may have been Crianlarich, where you often had to await the arrival of the train from Mallaig/Fort William, and transfer the token to enable passage on the single track line.