All Saints Blitz V

Robin Haldane swoops to win All Saints V

Robin Haldane wins All Saints Blitz V on Wednesday 30 May 2024 

Photograph: One of the most beautiful places to play chess.

We had our strongest line-up yet for the fifth All Saints Blitz with 14 players. School half-term meant that, freed from teaching duties, Robin Haldane (Streatham) and Marcus Gosling (Epsom) joined us for the first time and proved formidable competitors alongside three-time winner Tony Hughes (Wimbledon) and the hardy perennials Peter Roche and David Rowson from Kingston. Other Kingston first-timers were Aziz Sannie and junior Jaden Mistry. Derek Bruce, who volunteers teaching chess at the Tudor Drive library, used to play for Kingston in the 1970s.

Round 2: Aziz Sannie snatched victory from the jaws of defeat against Marcus Gosling

Despite of the numbers being higher, the tournament controller John Foley kept to a leisurely five rounds with a break between rounds 2 and 3 for the players to patronise the café.

Round 3: Robin Haldane v Tony Hughes, with Nick Grey (right) v Aziz Sannie in the background

The two favourites, Robin Haldane and Tony Hughes, were jointly in the lead with 2/2 when they met in round 3 and obtained a draw when Robin went for a perpetual check. They both won in round 4, so it came down to the last round. Robin held his nerve against David Shalom whereas Peter Roche threw a spanner in Tony’s works. Peter found some strong moves in a complex tactical position, thereby kicking Tony’s hopes of a fourth victory into touch.

Robin Haldane receiving his box of chocolates prize from John Foley
(Photo: Marcus Osborne)

The final standings were:

1. Robin Haldane (4½/5)

2. Peter Roche (4/5)

3. Tony Hughes (3½/5)