Let's get the inevitable out of the way first. Wood Green battered our first team in the London League Division 1 on the 4th. Still, facing four GMs, three IMs, and outgraded on most boards by 20 or so points, perhaps the final score of 10-2 was about par. The highlight from our pair of points was a bottom board victory for Barry Morris, who finished off his opponent quickly with a crisp sequence of sacrifices from the diagram position. You can find the full game to play through at the bottom of this article. And alas, it's bad news elsewhere in the London League: our third team losing in Division 4 to London Deaf on Friday 23rd January, 6-1 with one game adjourned.
But at least it's good news from the Stoneleigh Trophy, the Surrey rapid competition for teams of four, where opponents face each other twice per evening. Two weeks ago today we beat Guildford 5-3, and thus won the Trophy. Let's hope the Trophy is still around next year, because only three teams entered this year. Personally I really enjoy this event, although maybe it's hard not to when your score for the season is 3½ from 4.
And there's more good news from the Croydon League, where our A team beat Coulsdon's A team on the 27th of last month. The game that clinched it being an impressive victory for David Varley on the bottom board, where he was outgraded by almost 20 points. "This result leaves us in good shape with 3 points from a possible 4 and two matches left to play," writes captain Richard Tillet. "Following the rescheduling of the home match against Crystal Palace, there are no more matches until April. The next one, away at West Wickham, is on 9 April and could decide the destination of the Croydon Shield"
And that's it for this installment - except of course for the firework display from our sole victory against Wood Green, for you to play through and enjoy: