British Championships: Howell inches towards title

8/7/2013 – David Howell won his round eight game with the black pieces against Simon Williams, raising his score to 7.0/8. But his main rival Mark Hebden also won and remains just half a point behind. Six players are in striking position with 6.0/8 points. Expect some exciting action in the last three rounds. In our historical review of past champions we look back at the ten-time winner Jonathan Penrose.

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A record-breaking number of over 1000 players are taking part in the 2013 British Championships, attracted by a combination of the beautiful venue and the fact that it’s the 100th in a series stretching right back to 1904. This year it is taking place in the Riviera International Centre in Torquay. There are 23 different sections at the 2013 British Championships, catering for all ages and abilities, but the main focus of interest is on the Championship itself. There are 106 players taking part, of whom 33 are titled players, including thirteen grandmasters. The Championship runs from 29th July to 10th August 2013.

Top results of round eight

It is a testimony to fighting spirit that the participants of the 100th British Championship are showing that only two of the ten boards finished in draws – and just one with players in contention for the title. David Howell and Mark Hebden both won their games (Howell with black), while last year's winnter Gawain Jones is working his way up the ladder after a poor start.

No. White
Rating
Black
Rating
Result
1 GM Williams, Simon K
2481
GM Howell, David W L
2639
0-1
2 GM Hebden, Mark L
2555
GM Arkell, Keith C
2444
1-0
3 IM Ghasi, Ameet K
2459
IM Zhou, Yang-Fan
2469
½-½
4 Mackle, Dominic
2216
GM Jones, Gawain C B
2643
0-1
5 GM Kosten, Anthony C.
2458
GM Gordon, Stephen J
2521
0-1
6 GM Gormally, Daniel W
2496
GM Ward, Chris G
2432
1-0
7 IM Fernandez, Daniel
2346
GM Lalic, Bogdan
2489
0-1
8 Longson, Alexander
2279
IM Palliser, Richard J D
2453
0-1
9 Weaving, Richard
2196
IM Hawkins, Jonathan
2517
½-½
10 Anderson, John
2189
GM Wells, Peter K
2479
0-1
11 GM Flear, Glenn C
2456
Yeo, Michael J
2170
1-0
12 IM Knott, Simon J B
2318
IM Meszaros, Gyula
2255
0-1
13 FM Carr, Neil L
2290
Hackner, Oskar A
2063
1-0
14 FM Storey, Charles
2214
Haria, Ravi
2133
1-0
15 GM Emms, John M
2469
Graham, David B
2165
1-0
16 Purdon, Colin
2140
IM Bates, Richard A
2375
1-0
17 FM Eggleston, David J
2363
Weller, Jean-Luc
2172
0-1
18 Duff, Rufus
2157
FM Chapman, Terry P D
2308
½-½
19 FM Ledger, Dave J
2305
Foo, William J
2090
0-1
20 IM Kolbus, Dietmar
2288
Batchelor, Peter J
2118
1-0

Top rankings after round eight

In the next round on Tuesday seven players can theoretically catch David Howell (if he loses his game against Danny Gormally) and Hebden can catch him by winning if he draws. Well worth watching.

Rnk Name
Score
Rating
TPR
W-We
1 GM Howell, David W L
7.0
2639
2768
+0.99
2 GM Hebden, Mark L
6.5
2555
2646
+1.02
3 GM Jones, Gawain C B
6.0
2643
2466
-1.21
4 GM Gordon, Stephen J
6.0
2521
2597
+0.90
5 GM Gormally, Daniel W
6.0
2496
2491
+0.08
6 GM Lalic, Bogdan
6.0
2489
2459
-0.16
7 IM Ghasi, Ameet K
6.0
2459
2538
+0.91
8 IM Palliser, Richard J D
6.0
2453
2472
+0.36
9 GM Williams, Simon K
5.5
2481
2494
+0.31
10 GM Wells, Peter K
5.5
2479
2453
-0.07
11 IM Zhou, Yang-Fan
5.5
2469
2442
-0.11
12 GM Flear, Glenn C
5.5
2456
2289
-1.35
13 GM Arkell, Keith C
5.5
2444
2448
+0.21
14 FM Carr, Neil L
5.5
2290
2209
-0.68
15 IM Meszaros, Gyula
5.5
2255
2342
+0.99
16 IM Hawkins, Jonathan
5.0
2517
2396
-1.07
17 GM Emms, John M
5.0
2469
2261
-1.82
18 GM Kosten, Anthony C.
5.0
2458
2425
-0.16
19 GM Ward, Chris G
5.0
2432
2392
-0.29
20 IM Fernandez, Daniel
5.0
2346
2451
+1.16
21 IM Kolbus, Dietmar
5.0
2288
2438
+1.56
22 Mackle, Dominic
5.0
2216
2442
+2.17
23 FM Storey, Charles
5.0
2214
2362
+1.42
24 Weaving, Richard
5.0
2196
2382
+1.83
25 Weller, Jean-Luc
5.0
2172
2305
+1.31
26 Purdon, Colin
5.0
2140
2211
+0.62
27 Foo, William J
5.0
2090
2302
+2.19
28 Tambini, Jasper
5.0
1979
2277
+2.60

Start of the game Simon Williams vs David Howell

Many-times opponents Hebden and Arkell share a joke before the start...

... reigning British Champion Gawain Jones joins in

Selection of games from round eight

Select games from the dropdown menu above the board

Game of the day by Andrew Martin

Rd 8 Game of the Day GB Ch Torquay 2013

Photos provided by Brendan O'Gorman and Keverel Chess


To really appreciate how far the event has come in its 100 years, one needs to take the opportunity to look back at some of the milestones on the way – the great characters, the champions and their games. To do this, IM Andrew Martin is using his computer skills to pick out some key games from the past and run his expert eye over them. Similarly, Bob Jones, local chess history writer, is compiling a set of ten pages, each on a past champion and one of his/her games. These will appear, one at a time, in the daily championship bulletins.

British Champions & Their Games - No. 8

1958 – Leamington Spa

In 1949 at Felixstowe the formula changed from the American to Swiss system, allowing 32 to contest the title, rather than the traditional 12. Not everyone was convinced of the rightness of this, arguing that the eventual winner might not have played several of his rivals, but it has stayed this way ever since.

A 15-year-old schoolboy called Penrose took part and came 18th= on five points. The following year he came 3rd= and really caught the eye of the public, though he did not play during his university years, and didn’t reach for the heights again until he came 2nd= at Plymouth in 1957, behind another dark horse, the 60-year-old Hungarian-born Dr. Fazekas. Penrose had finished with four draws and a win, where Fazekas had finished with four wins and a draw, so Penrose had let it slip. Incidentally, later that year Fazekas returned the trophy in disgust at being left out of the BCF team for the Munich Olympiad.

Next year, Jonathan Penrose (picture above) avoided this slow finish mistake, and ended W;W;W;W; to tie with Barden. He won the five-match play-off, the following being the fourth and decisive game.

[Event "BCF-ch London m"] [Site "London"] [Date "1958.??.??"] [Round "5"] [White "Penrose, Jonathan"] [Black "Barden, Leonard William"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B58"] [Annotator "Peter Clarke in BCM"] [PlyCount "61"] [EventDate "1958.??.??"] [EventType "match"] [EventRounds "5"] [EventCountry "ENG"] [Source "ChessBase"] [SourceDate "1999.07.01"] 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 d6 6. Be2 e5 7. Nxc6 bxc6 8. O-O Be7 9. f4 O-O 10. Kh1 Nd7 11. Bc4 Nb6 12. Bb3 Be6 $2 {It is surprising what a disastrous move this turns out to be. White now forces Black to exchange the bishops on b3, thus opening the a-file and at the same time he prepares a strong king-side attack. It amounts to a tragedy for Black because his position is otherwise satisfactory.} ({He should first have played} 12... a5 13. a4 (13. a3 Be6 14. f5 Bxb3 15. cxb3 {because Black's centre would be too strong.})) 13. f5 $1 Bxb3 14. axb3 d5 ({Since this is innocuous he might have done better to play once} 14... Kh8) 15. Qg4 Kh8 16. Rf3 d4 {This helps White to promote his attack because he no longer has to worry about the position in the centre. He should have waited until White forced him to play it.} ({Better was} 16... Rg8 17. Rh3 g6 {though it is not a very promising position.}) 17. Ne2 Nd7 ({Again} 17... Rg8 {is a little better The text gives up material in the hope of counter-play.}) 18. Rh3 g6 ({If} 18... Nf6 19. Qh4 { and the threat of Bg5 is decisive.}) 19. fxg6 fxg6 20. Qxg6 Rf1+ 21. Ng1 Qg8 22. Qxc6 Nf6 ({The desperate} 22... Rc8 {is easily defeated by} 23. Qxd7 Rxc2 24. Rg3 Qf8 25. Rf3 {etc.}) 23. Rg3 Qc8 24. Qb5 Re1 {He now wins the title with a decisive combination.} 25. Bh6 Rxa1 26. Qxe5 $1 ({He could also win by} 26. Bg7+ Kg8 27. Bxf6+ Kf7 28. Bxe7 {but the text is more decisive.}) 26... Bd8 27. Bg7+ Kg8 28. Bxf6+ Kf7 29. Rg7+ Kf8 30. Qd6+ Ke8 31. Re7+ 1-0

Having made this final breakthrough, Penrose virtually made the trophy his private property through the 1960s, winning it ten times in the twelve years 1958 – 1969. He competed in nine Olympiads between 1952 – 1974, beating many of the world’s top players en route. But after collapsing at the board through nervous tension, he restricted his chess to the more sedate form of postal chess, becoming a GM in 1983 and was the world’s highest rated postal player in 1989.


Links

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