Philip Doyle – Rathmines Senior Club Champion 2013

I have been taking part in our Club Championship Senior Section for a quarter of a century and for many years harboured some hope I might win it. I was by no means the highest graded player in the Club but there had often been surprise winners so why couldn’t I be one of them. Well, that was all right when my grading was in the 1700’s or higher but in recent times it had been falling eventually to this year’s 1633 which ceded me 13th out of 17 participants (Philip’s rating is now 1733 after this event – Michael). A realistic target then was 50%.

In round 1 and 2 I drew with John Burns and Shahram Nikrow. In round 3 I had a win over Tony Bermingham and the target was getting closer. In round 4 it was attained when I beat Tomasz Skrzypnik. Two games to go and who knows! In round 5 I beat John Aherne. Going into the final round I was sharing first place with Abul Kalam and the top cede Killian Delaney. I was drawn against Abul who blundered a Bishop on move 8. Abul fought on manfully but I gradually got the upper hand and secured my fifth point. Can you imagine my surprise and delight when the Controller, Michael Kennedy, came over to tell me that Killian had only drawn with David Goggins and that I was the outright winner. I think Michael was nearly as pleased as I was as were my Club mates who gathered around to offer their congratulations. It was lucky that Killian had drawn because a rapid playoff would have determined the winner. Killian would undoubtedly have prevailed in the rapid as it is his specialty.

There must be something catching as Tony Duffy won the Phibsboro senior championship after a lapse of over 20 years and his brother Noel won the intermediate.

Thanks to all for your congratulations and kind remarks.

Philip Doyle

(Click below to see 2 of Philip’s games from the tournament.)

Philip Doyle(1633) –  John Aherne(1819)

Rathmines Club Championships 2013 (Round 5)

English Opening, Botvinnik System

(Annotated by Philip Doyle, Michael Kennedy, Fritz 12)

Follow link to replay the game:

1.c4 Nf6 2.Nc3 g6 3.g3 Bg7 4.Bg2 0-0 5.e4 d6 6.Nge2 e5 7.0-0 Nc6 8.h3 Be6 9.d3 Qd7 10.Kh2 Ne8 11.f4


11… Ne7N John’s plan is to force the Pawn to d5.

[I was expecting 11…f5 which makes it difficult for me to find a continuation. This has been played a number of times before, e.g. 12.Be3 Nf6 13.Nd5 Rae8 14.Qd21-0 (42), Ubach Miralda (2410) – Torrecillas Martinez (2405), Catalunya ChT 1999]

12.Be3 c6 13.Qa4 Nc7 [ 13…c5 would have halted my d-Pawn advance and tied up the centre.] 14.d4 b5 15.cxb5 cxb5 16.Qd1


16… exd4

[Fritz 12 prefers 16…exf4 17.Nxf4 Bc4 18.Re1 b4 19.b3 Ba6=]

[or 16…b4 17.d5 bxc3 18.dxe6 Qxe6 19.Nxc3=]

17.Bxd4 Rad8± 18.Bxg7 Kxg7 19.Nd4

[ 19.Qd4+ wins me a Pawn but I preferred to concentrate on the centre and let my opponent worry about his exposed King. 19… f6 A) 20.Qxa7 b4 21.Nd1 Ra8 22.Qd4 Nc6 23.Qd3 Na6² (not 23…Rxa2? 24.Rxa2 Bxa2 25.b3+-traps the bishop); B) 20.f5 Bg8 21.Rac1 Nc6 22.Qd2±]

19…Kg8 20.Rf2 d5 21.e5 Nf5 22.Nxf5 Bxf5 23.Rd2 Be6 24.Ne4+- 


24… dxe4 Black sacrifices the exchange (R+N for Q) in the hope of creating an attack with his Rooks coming to the seventh rank. This was a real worry for me and I had to play very carefully for a few moves.

[ 24…Ne8 stops White’s Ne4 jumping into f6 or d6. The downside is that Black is very passive]

25.Rxd7 Rxd7 26.Qc2 Rfd8 27.Kg1

[ 27.Qxe4? Rd2 28.Qe3 R8d3 gives Black the active play he was looking for with his earlier sacrifice]

27…b4 28.Re1 Nb5 29.Qxe4 a5 Its time to take the bull by the horns. 30.g4 Bxa2 31.f5 Rd2 32.Re2 Rd1+ 33.Kh2 Bb1 34.Qb7 Nd4 As Ernie Earley used to say “The dogs bark but the caravan goes on”. 35.e6 


35… Nxe2 [ 35…fxe6 36.f6 forces Black to give up more material to stave off mate on g7] 36.Qxf7+ Kh8 37.f6 Rg8 38.e7 Rd7 39.Qxg8+ (as 39… Kxg8 40. e8Q#) 1-0

Tomasz  Skrzypnik (1901)Philip Doyle (1633)

Rathmines Club Championships 2013 (Round 4)

French Defence, Exchange Variation

(Annotated by Philip Doyle, Michael Kennedy, Fritz 12)

Follow link to replay the game:

1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 exd5 4.Nf3 I used to yawn when I had to face the Exchange Variation against the French but a few years ago John Burns gave me a new continuation which inevitably leads to an exciting game. The idea is that Black gets his white-squared Bishop to f5 in opposition to White’s normally strong d3 Bishop. It also limits the scope of the other Bishop which no longer has g5 to go to.

4… h6 very rare in this position [Black has plenty of decent options here, some of which have been played in thousands of games, e.g: 4…Bd6] [ 4…Nf6]


5.Bd3 Qf6 6.Ne5 [Fritz 12 prefers 6.Nc3 e.g. Be6 7.Qe2 c6 8.Ne5 Bd6 9.f4 Ne7 10.0-0±] 6…Bf5 7.0-0 Bd6 8.Re1 Ne7 9.Nd2

[a forcing alternative is 9.Ng4 Qg6 ( 9…Bxg4 10.Qxg4when if h5?? attempting to win the d-pawn 11.Qc8#) 10.Bxf5 Qxf5 11.Ne3 Qd7 12.Nxd5 Bxh2+ 13.Kxh2 Qxd5 14.Bf4 Qd7±] 9…Bxd3 10.cxd3 0-0 11.Ndf3 Rd8 12.Qb3 Nbc6!= Black correctly ignores his b-pawn and instead makes threats of his own

Your Generated Chess Board

13.Qxb7?White grabs the poisoned Pawn and nearly gets his Queen trapped.

[ 13.Be3 a5 ( 13…Nxe5?? loses a piece 14.dxe5 Bxe5 15.Nxe5 Qxe5 16.Bc5)]

[ 13.Ng4 Qg6 14.Nge5 Qf6=]

13…Nb4 [ 13…Nxd4 also works 14.Nxd4 Bxe5 15.Nf3 Rdb8-+ trapping the Queen] 14.Qb5 Nc2 15.Rb1 Nxe1 16.Nxe1-+ White rescued his queen for the price of an exchange but still has pieces on the first rank.


16… Bxe5 17.dxe5 Qxe5 18.Nf3 Qe2 [ 18…Qd6] 19.Bf4 Ng6 20.Bxc7??Overlooking the fork.

[ 20.Bg3 would have kept the game alive.]

20…Qc2 21.Re1 Qxc7 22.b3 Qd7 23.Qa5 Re8 24.Rxe8+ Rxe8 25.h4 Qc6 26.Qxa7 Qc1+ 27.Kh2 Qf4+ 28.Kh3 f5 29.Qa5 Qg4+ 30.Kh2 Nf4 31.Ne1 Qxh4+ 32.Kg1 Ne2+ 33.Kf1 Qh1# 0-1

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9 Responses to Philip Doyle – Rathmines Senior Club Champion 2013

  1. shahram says:

    Was this report delayed so long because of the moderator ?

  2. tony s says:

    Well done Philip. You are very modest about your winning the championship, but looking at those games, it had nothing to do with luck. It is quite a strong tournament, so to get 5/6 is a stunning achievement…
    And Shahram, why on earth would the “moderator” or anyone else delay the report? These things take time to prepare.

  3. leon fagan says:

    philip it is nice to see a gentleman such as your good self winning the senior championship.Also you won it by very good play and not by luck and remember you beat some very strong players so you should be proud of yourself.

  4. GM John Burns says:

    Well done Philip. It was an honour to have drawn with the champ!

  5. shahram says:

    @ tony s . 1st comment was meant to be a joke due to delay posting games , what is not a joke but a scam is Fide K factor of 15 applied to most players , you have play a lot of fide rated games to get anywhere , I am surprised there is not a outrage about this .

  6. Killian Delaney says:

    I dont know about a scam! If you have played less than 30 games your K Factor is 30 which isnt too bad. The ICU K factor is practically the same as fide for players with a rating >2100.

  7. shahram says:

    over 2100 is different than some one rated 1500 and k factor of 15 , they have to play hundreds of games and win lots to get anywhere , just a revenue raising scam y fide .

  8. Killian Delaney says:

    Its the exact same for a 2100 player although the majority of 2100 players wont improve significantly in comparison to a 1500 as its much more difficult. Fide ratings initially were only for players rated over 2200 and then about 15(?) years or so ago it was dropped down to 2000 and more recently any rating. Due to the low K factor its nearly better for junior players not to play fide rated tournaments until they can expect to get a rating close to 2000 or so but saying that if they keep playing fide rated games their rating should catch up to what it should be.

    You dont have to worry tho Shahram fide are bringing a new online website for blitz and rapid ratings were you can get official ratings playing from the comfort of your own home.

  9. shahram says:

    yet another Fide scam , many websites give you on line ratings for chess anyway , now fide want to cash in using their name and collecting ROYALTIES from one of the website operators , low K factor is to force serious players to keep playing in fide tournaments coughing up $$$ .

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