Barry chess teams manage to avoid defeat

Saturday, 20 January 2018

By Contributed Item
in Other Sports

This week three of the teams from the Barry Chess Club have been in action. In a very unusual situation none of our teams were defeated.

In Division 2 the two Barry teams, the Camelots and the Quarks, were due to play each other.

With their difficulties at the bottom of the division it would have been helpful if the Camelots were able to pick up all five points as the Quarks are effectively relegated anyway.

Both teams were selected from the same pool of players with the first choice selection being made by the Camelots captain.

On paper it should have resulted in the required big victory for the Camelots. Unfortunately we don’t play on paper!

There was a quick draw between Chris Green and Peter Watkins on board 3. This was followed by Mike O’Leary winning on board 2 to give the Quarks the lead in the match.

Returning player Mark Cooke then won his match to level the scores. The remaining matches were particularly long.

Stephen Bonutto eventually eked out a fortunate victory for the Camelots.

The final point was taken by John Stephenson when he could not be prevented from queening the final pawn left on the board.

This meant the match finished with 2.5 points going to each team. As has become the norm in Barry we don’t like to make it easy for ourselves!

The Quarks remain adrift at the bottom of the Second Division.

The Camelots sit at the halfway point in the nine-team division.

However the two teams immediately below us have a game in hand and we are only 2.5 points above the Cardiff Crowns, who are in the last relegation spot.

On the following night the Gambits made the long journey to Treorchy to play the Rhondda B team.

Because this was the second match in consecutive days it proved a little difficult to raise a team.

However three players played for both the Quarks and the Gambits meaning our team was stronger than usual and we hoped for a big victory.

Our nearest rivals in the league had picked up four points the previous evening so anything less than 3.5 points would have dropped us back to the bottom of the table.

We went home with draws from Peter Watkins (again), Ken Curry and Phil Jones (again) but Dave Mahoney on board 5 and John Stephenson (again) earned victories to give us 3.5 points and allow us to remain above the North Cardiff Zebras – but only just.

The Barry Chess Club meets at 7.30pm each Monday at the West End Club, St. Nicholas Road, Barry CF62 6QY.

The club is open to players of all standards; whether you are interested in playing competitive chess or just the occasional friendly games.

New players are very welcome to just turn up on the night but if you contact one of the club members through the website we can explain what is happening on the night you have in mind, and arrange for someone to greet you on your arrival.

For more details visit our website at

Phil Jones

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