1980: The spear-carriers

Game Hitchcock,RJ - Blewett,P Woolacombe, 10.10.1980

The spear-carriers

This game from the Golden Coast tournament (limited to players under 155) has a cheerful blend of sound with unsound ideas. This mixture characterises club chess in general, but it can pay surprising dividends.  It also demonstrates both players' determination to press on with their own attacks, irrespective of what is happening elsewhere on the board. — RJH

King's Indian Attack

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.g3 g6 4.Bg2 Bg7 5.0–0 Nc6 6.d3 e5

A fashionable move, leading to a formation much favoured by Mrs. Bruce, but it seems suspect here.

7.a4 Nge7 8.Nbd2 0–0 9.c3 Rb8 10.Re1 b5

Hardly the definitive breakthrough for Black. White is not interested, and signals his intentions elsewhere by his twelfth move:

11.axb5 Rxb5 12.h4 h6 13.Nf1 Be6 14.Ne3 Qb8 15.Nh2 Ra5 16.Rxa5 Nxa5 17.Nef1 Qb6 18.Ng4


Tempting Black into the following weakening move.

18...h5 19.Ngh2 Rb8 20.g4 hxg4 21.Nxg4 Kh7 22.Bg5 Bxg4 23.Qxg4 f6

Rather a desperate last-ditch defence, enabling the b2 Pawn to be defended again and weakening g6 into the bargain.

24.Bc1 Nac6 25.Be3 Qa6 26.Qd7 Rb7 27.Qg4 Qa2 28.h5

Launching the final assault, irrespective of the Queen's-side side-show.

28...Qxb2 29.hxg6+ Kg8 30.Qe6+ Kh8 31.Qf7 Na5 32.Bh6 Ng8 33.Bxg7#


[Notes by Richard Hitchcock]

Chess Quotes

The King himself is haughtie care,
Which ouerlooketh all his men,
And when he seeth how they fare,
He steps among them now and then,
Whom when his foe presumes to checke,
His seruants stand, to giue the necke.

The Queene is queint, and quicke conceit,
Which makes her walke which way she list,
Ans rootes them up, that lie in wait,
To worke hir treason ere she wist:
Hir force is such against her foes,
That whom she meets, she ouerthrowes...

— Nicholas BRETON (1542-1626), The Chesse Play.