1981: Early knockout

Steve Owen writes:

I joined Exeter Chess Club at the age of thirteen and remained a member until 1990, when I became a district councillor and found that I had not sufficient time for other interests.  I can remember at 14 watching Denis Gray demolish a strong opponent in a dozen moves or so during a National Club Match played by telephone, when I acted as ‘runner’. My own best years were from 1973, when I returned from university , until about 1985. During that time, I used to play board six (bottom board) for the Bremridge team and top board for the Mamhead. 

I had quite good results for the Bremridge, as my opponents were often older players, perhaps past their best. 

Top board in the Mamhead competition was often more difficult, as I faced young whizz-kids playing twenty or thirty points above their grading. Typically contrasting games were played in the Exeter-Plymouth matches of 1981...

 

Game Owen,SM - Bruce,R, Exeter-Plymouth (Bremridge), 1981

Early knockout

I especially enjoyed playing Rowena Bruce, who had actually been World Girls' Champion in the 'twenties, and British Ladies' Champion several times thereafter. So I can claim to have beaten a world champion! She was much stronger than I positionally, but sometimes crumbled against aggression. — SMO

Centre Counter (Scandinavian)

1. e4 d5 2. exd5 Qxd5 3. Nc3 Qa5 4. d4 Nf6 5. Nf3 Bg4 6. Be2 e6 7. Ne5 Bxe2 8. Qxe2 c6 9. O-O Be7

+-----------------+
|rh.+k+.4|
|0p+.gp0p|
|.+p+ph.+|
|1.+.H.+.|
|.+.).+.+|
|+.H.+.+.|
|P)P+Q)P)|
|$.G.+RI.|
+-----------------+

10. f4 O-O 11. f5 Qb6 12. Rf4 Nd5 13. Nxd5 cxd5 14. c3 Qd6 15. f6 Bxf6 16. Rxf6 gxf6 17. Qg4+ 1-0

[Notes by Steve Owen]

Chess Quotes

"She hung up and I set out the chess board. I filled a pipe, paraded the chessmen and inspected them for French shaves and loose buttons, and played a championship tournament game between Gortchakoff and Meninkin, seventy-two moves to a draw, a prize specimen of the irresistible force meeting the immovable object, a battle without armour, a war without blood, and as elaborate a waste of human intelligence as you could find anywhere outside an advertising agency."
— Raymond CHANDLER, The Long Goodbye, Chapter 24, final sentences.