Quality Chess, as you may know, is based in Glasgow, Scotland. So we like to keep an eye on the progress of Scottish chess players. In terms of players gaining higher titles, the last few years have seen slim pickings. But recently two Scots pushed their ratings over 2300, and so will become FIDE Masters. Congratulations to Clément Sreeves and Andy Burnett.
Andy’s elevation comes about a month after we sent some Quality Chess books his way, as a minor way of sponsoring his title-seeking efforts. Sadly we cannot claim any of the credit as Andy has barely had time to read any of the books. Andy’s blog is here but with all the events he has been playing, he has not had time to update it recently.
Clément and Andy join the ranks of Scottish FMs who have realistic chances of becoming IMs. In fact, FMs Graham Morrison and Alan Tate have all the IM norms required, and just need to boost their ratings to 2400 to collect their titles.
And our best candidate for next Scottish GM? IM Andrew Greet.
The following crushing win was played by Andy Burnett in the Czech Republic last year.
A. Burnett – F. Ludvigsen
1 e4 e6 2 d4 d5 3 Nc3 Bb4 4 Qf3
Intriguing, or maybe Andy really played 4.Qd3 and the game was input incorrectly in the database. Emanuel Berg did not cover 4.Qf3 in his French repertoire book, which is fine by me – you cannot cover every crazy move even in a ‘complete’ repertoire.
Rather compliant, regardless of whether the queen is on d3 or f3. 4…Nc6!? looks logical – attack the thing that’s not defended. White may well still be equal.
We are now back in a known theory line, though of course the queen normally gets here via d3.
5…Nf6 6 Qh4 c5 7 dxc5 Bxc5
A little slow. Normal is 7…Bxc3+ 8 bxc3 Qa5.
8 Nf3 Nc6 9 Bb5 Bd7
9…0–0 was simpler.
10 Bg5 Be7 11 Rd1 Qa5?!
More solid was 11…Qc7!?.
Actually the same idea that Andy plays next move was already playable.
12…Rd8 was safer.