Yorkshire Chess Association

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Year Book 2019-20 Contents

Thing of the Day

 

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Accuracy of club information &

Yearbook: further copies

Message from the President

Officers 2019-20

YCA Honorary Life Members

Annual Fees (as revised 2019)

County Match Fees (as revised 2019)

YCA League Fixtures 2019-2020

YCA League Match Venues

Match Correspondents ‑ Woodhouse Cup

Match Correspondents ‑ IM Brown

Match Correspondents ‑ Silver Rook

Secretaries of Competing Clubs

Junior Chess Contacts

Contact Details Index

Chess Clubs/Organisations in Yorkshire

ECF Aug 2019 Grading List Extract

Notes on Grading List Extract

List of Clubs in Yorkshire-based Leagues

League Tables & Match Results 2018-19

County Match Results 2018-2019

Correspondence Chess 2018-19

Yorkshire Junior Activity 2018-19

Recent Winners of YCA Events

YCA Constitution

YCA League Rules (as revised 2019)

Index to Rules

Individual Championship Rules

Event Calendar 2019-20

Yorkshire Individual Championship 2020

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< Thing of the Day Index

15/04/2020

Atkins and Yates in the British Championship

and the Art of Beating Alekhine

 

Fred Dewhirst Yates, the boy from Birstall, and Leicester-born Henry Ernest Atkins who came to Huddersfield in 1909, dominated the British Championship in the first 28 years from its inception in 1904, during which period there were 20 championship events held, with gaps being mainly attributable to the war.

 

Atkins won 9 times, Yates won 6 times, and others won 5 times.  Yates’s performance is the more impressive when 5 second places are taken into account.  (Atkins had only 1 second place to his credit.)

 

Year

Location

British Champion

Second

1904

Hastings

 

 

William Ewart Napier

Atkins after play-off

1905

Southport

Atkins

 

 

 

1906

Shrewsbury

Atkins

 

 

 

1907

London, Crystal Palace

Atkins

 

 

 

1908

Tunbridge Wells

Atkins

 

 

 

1909

Scarborough

Atkins

 

 

 

1910

Oxford

Atkins

 

 

Yates & Blackburne

1911

Glasgow

Atkins

 

 

Yates (play-off)

1912

Richmond

 

 

Richard Griffith

Yates

1913

Cheltenham

 

Yates

 

 

1914

Chester

 

Yates

 

 

1915-1918 (no contest)

(no British Championship)

 

1919

Hastings

(no British Championship)

 

1920

Edinburgh

 

 

Roland Scott

 

1921

Malvern

 

Yates

 

 

1922

London

(no British Championship)

 

1923

Portsmouth/Southsea

 

 

Sir George Alan Thomas

 

1924

Southport

Atkins

 

 

Yates

1925

Stratford-on-Avon

Atkins

 

 

Yates

1926

Edinburgh

 

Yates

 

 

1927

(no contest)

 

 

 

 

1928

Tenby

 

Yates

 

 

1929

Ramsgate

 

 

Mir Sultan Khan

 

1930

Scarborough

(no British Championship)

 

1931

Worcester

 

Yates

 

 

Totals

9

6

 

1 x Atkins

15

5

5 x Yates

 

Atkins was clearly the senior partner of the duo, yet is perhaps the less well-known as he largely confined his competitive chess to home events, rarely playing in events abroad.  Yates on the other hand played abroad extensively.  This meant that Atkins played both Alekhine and Capablanca probably only once, losing to both of them at the London 1922 tournament.  Yates on the other hand, played Alekhine at least 16 times, and Capablanca at least 11 times.  Against the latter he scored 3 draws (2 of those 3 with White) and 8 losses (7 of those 8 with Black).  Against Alekhine he fared better with 2 wins, 3 draws, and 11 losses.

 

Yates’s first win over Alekhine came in round 4 of the 1922 Hastings tournament.

Click here to play through Alekhine v Yates, Hastings 1922.

The second Yates defeat of Alekhine came in round 7 of the 1923 Carlsbad tournament.

Click here to play through Yates v Alekhine, Carlsbad 1923.

 

One of the 3 draws between these players was something of a curiosity in that it featured Alekhine playing his “own” defence.

Click here for Yates v Alekhine playing the Alekhine, Dresden 1926.

 

At the time of these three games Alekhine had yet to become World Champion, Capablanca being the then title-holder.

 

Even Alekhine has capable of the odd blunder – possibly due in part to immoderate alcohol intake – and he made a curious oversight in his game with Keres at the Margate 1937 tournament.  Presenting positions with the caption “White to play and win” can make it easy to spot the winning move, even if the follow-through has not been adequately worked out.  So, perhaps showing the position a move earlier, with the caption “Black to move and blunder” could be a better approach:

 

Alekhine (Black) to move and blunder.

Click here to see how Black blundered.

(Click here to play through the whole game.)

 

Further reading:

(Click here for biographical details of Henry Ernest Atkins.)

(Click here for biographical details of Fred Dewhirst Yates.)