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The Comedy of Errors

 

 

 

16.i.2019

 

 

 

Wirral League

 

 

 

Atticus 2

 

Pensby 1

 

1

b

Tom Webb

122

 0

1

David Ashton

136

2

w

Ben Ellington

117

½

½

Brian Crompton

97

3

b

Jim Wiseman

121

1

 0

Allan Clarke

99

4

w

Neil Tabor

87

 0

1

Philip Green

90

5

b

Sanjoy Banerjee

123

1

 0

Ron Sheen

86

 

“Until I know this sure uncertainty, I’ll entertain the offered fallacy…”
 
Pensby, for those who do not know it, is a large village on the Wirral Peninsula whose chief claim to fame might be that a certain William Ralph “Dixie” Dean played football there before he was lured by the bright lights and big city.  The villagers found their transit across the river more arduous on Wednesday night, and as the clock approach 8pm they were still three players short.
 
Since both top boards were present, Tom and Dave Ashton began proceedings while we others waited.  Eventually Tom pressed a little too hard in a drawish position and a sucker punch cost us a valuable half point.
 
Two more souls had by then crossed the threshold and we had a match, though since our board 4 and their board 2 were unable to attend the fixture, and as captains we agreed we would “call it a draw”.
 
Since the Pensby scorecard had already been filled out, I accepted the suggestion that this pseudo-contest to be pencilled in as having taken place on Board 2 instead of relegating both to Board 5.  This meant Jim was unexpected handed the black pieces but a clinical win on his part spared my embarrassment.
 
As we waited for the match to start, we had understood that the other player who had arrived was their bottom board.  Thus, one it was confirmed that both teams had four players, Neil as his opponent began their game on Board 4, with Neil having the white pieces.  In a tight encounter, Neil was unable to translate his fine recent form and left empty handed for his efforts.
 
When it transpired that one of the new arrivals was weaker, it meant either having to ask Neil and his opponent to call a halt after a Ruy Lopez was already on the board or relegate myself to Board 5.
 
I cannot be accused of being over-familiar with the finer points of league rules yet even I appreciate that there is at least an expectation that we are obliged to play the team broadly in line with respective playing strength.  Yet it was Hobson’s choice and stopping a game that had already started in order to re-pair the bottom two boards was even less palatable.
 
Finally, I embarked on my own game which was routine on the board and farcical off it.  Yet a point was secured and the match drawn.
 
Given we out-ranked our opponents by an average of 12 points per board, it is a disappointment we only shared the points, and it means we will now have a real battle on our hands to edge out the two Wallasey teams for promotion.
 
“This this my comfort: when your words are done
My woes end likewise with the evening sun”
 
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