When our top-board player Paul Johnson saw the draw for Limewood team in round 1 of the online National Clubs Championships, he was taken aback to find he was pitched against Grand Master John Nunn – just a shade nunn-plussed in fact. This was the Minor section after all!
John Nunn in his top-flight competition days was one of the world top 10 players and 3-times World Champion in chess problem solving. Now retired from professional chess he just plays for fun, which will have been some comfort to our Paul.
Playing under the Nunn-de-plume of Doccy1, John headed up the Bude Surfers team from Cornwall. Also on board were John’s wife Petra, who just happens to be a FIDE Master, and their son Michael. A clear case of Nunn-proliferation.
Our Paul, with his grade of 160, doesn’t often get to play a Grand Master, so this was a challenge to be savoured. He gave it his best, to some effect: he took the GM to 63 moves before resigning in the face of sustained Nunn-aggression.
The game is now enshrined for posterity here on the public pages of our website. You can play through the game here and download the pgn file here.
Meanwhile Mrs Nunn trampled our Paul May into the ground – nunn-invasively, of course – in just under half the moves that hubby took to quell Paul J. Paul M admits that his play was a bit nunn-descript.
But the Nunn family didn’t have it all their own way. Our Philip May nunn-chalantly disposed of son Michael in just 18 moves.
So we lost the round by 4½ to 1½, our other ½ point coming from John Grasham who was held to a draw by Christine Constable. A fair cop, he says.
The existence of a chess club at Bude was noted by the Oxford don William Spooner back in the 19th century. He reported that they called themselves the Bude Roys. He found them rather uncouth.
I won’t be reviewing the other 4 rounds – we didn’t meet any more Grand Masters and the editor says I talk too much nunn-sense.
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