John Foley (Surrey) v Colin Mackenzie (Middlesex)

Played at Cheam Parochial Hall on 2 March 2024 on board 2 in the SCCU under-2050 county match between Surrey and Middlesex

Surrey are doing well in the higher echelons of county chess. Its Open team qualified top of the Southern Counties league stage and its under-2050 team also qualified for the national finals by beating Middlesex in this crucial decider. Surrey needed to beat Middlesex to be sure of going through alongside Essex. Graham Alcock, the team manager, brought out his strongest team of the season so far, fortified by six juniors who performed admirably.

Middlesex’s Steven Coles (right) v Surrey’s Sebastian Galer on board 1

For each of the last three years I have played Colin McKenzie in this match. Our last game was rather short. This game was to be rather longer.