Ben Harte writes…
France like UK is suffering badly from the pandemic and restrictions on daily life in France’s second lockdown are more stringent than ours here. Our friends at the chess club in Aix-en-Provence (Echiquier du Roi René) challenged us to play a lockdown online event, it being unlikely that they can travel to play at Wanstead for a while -their invitation to do that is very much still standing of course.
Last night 18 players from our Wanstead & Woodford and friends group took on a strong French team of 21 players. It was decided to call the winner on the top seven boards. Aix had the strongest player in the field and we had the second and third. This was a tough battle. After 90 minutes of play at 7 minutes plus 2 seconds increment, we held 6 of the top 7 positions including the top two and, as such, this was a great victory. A note of caution should be added, Aix’s best player won all his/her games and most of our top players managed to dodge him/her. Perhaps that fluke skewed the results more to our favour. In the middle order Aix proved very strong, but one of our juniors, who would consider this slow blitz, acquitted himself very well in the middle order.
It was great night of chess and a famous victory was recorded. You can find all the details here: Aix Battle 13 Nov