© 1997-2024
John Saunders


BRITBASE - British Chess Game Archive

Tournament: 34th Hastings Premier 1958/59 Go to: Previous YearNext Year • updated February 5, 2023 6:50 PM
Venue: Sun Lounge • Dates: 29 December 1958 - 7 January 1959 • Download PGN (14/45 Premier + 6 part-games + 16 games from subsid. events)

1958/59 Hastings Premier, 29 December 1958 - 7 January 1959, Sun Lounge, Hastings Pier

1958/59 Hastings Premier Nat'y/Resid 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10  Total 
1 Wolfgang Uhlmann East Germany
½ 1 1 1 1 1 ½ 1 1 8
2 Lajos Portisch Hungary ½
1 1 ½ 1 1 ½ 1 ½ 7
3 Ernö Gereben Stateless 0 0
½ 1 ½ 1 1 1 1 6
4 Klaus Darga West Germany 0 0 ½
1 0 1 1 1 1
5 Andreas Dückstein Austria 0 ½ 0 0
1 ½ 1 1 1 5
6 Robert Graham Wade Ilford / NZL 0 0 ½ 1 0
½ ½ ½ 1 4
7 Peter Hugh Clarke Ilford 0 0 0 0 ½ ½
1 1 1 4
8 Géza Füster Canada ½ ½ 0 0 0 ½ 0
1 ½ 3
9 Miroslav Radojcic Yugoslavia 0 0 0 0 0 ½ 0 0
10 Leonard W Barden London 0 ½ 0 0 0 0 0 ½ 0

Pairings and draw: it appears that modern Berger pairings applied

BCM, February 1959, ppn 33-39

The Hastings Congress by H. Golombek

The Thirty-fourth Annual Hastings Christmas Congress was opened at 3.30 in the afternoon of December 29th by the West German Ambassador at the Sun Lounge, St. Leonards. With 140 competitors taking part in the various sections and with quite a numerous crowd of spectators every day this was one of the most popular congresses I have ever attended.

This popularity was a little surprising when one considers that at least two of what by now one must call the usual Hastings stars were missing—a Soviet grandmaster and a British Champion. To explain the latter first—Jonathan Penrose found it impossible to spare the time from his studies to participate and his absence was much regretted and missed. Let us hope that next year he will be able to play and thus greatly strengthen the British contingent.

As regards Soviet participation some faint hopes had been entertained that the World Champion, Botwinnik, might be coming this time. But though at Munich in October I urged upon him the necessity for wiping out the disgrace of his previous Hastings appearance (he came equal fifth at the 1934-5 Hastings), he eventually decided that the demands of his work would be too great to enable him to spare the time. He also informed me that he would be too busy preparing for his match against whoever won the Candidates’ Tournament this year to come to the 1959-60 Congress; but, in the event of his retaining the title he bound himself to come and play at the 1960-1 tournament. So we have at any rate a long-term prospect of seeing a World Champion at Hastings.

This possibility having been denied, the next objective was to get that young genius Michael Tal. Unfortunately, however, the Soviet Championship Tournament was due to start at Tiflis only a couple of days after the end of the Hastings Congress and this meant that neither he nor any of the stronger Soviet players was available. A final disappointment came when the Icelandic grandmaster, Fridrik Olafsson, after first accepting an invitation to play, sent a telegram saying he could not come owing to his participation in the Beverwijk event.

Stony and fraught with disappointment is the path of a chess organizer and Frank Rhoden must have felt bitterly disappointed at all these let-downs. But his is a resilient and cheerful nature and he made the best of what there was; two players, Gereben and Fuster, were promoted from the Major Section of the Premier Reserves (thereby, incidentally, robbing that section of much of its interest) and the result is to be seen in the table.

Thus, at his first attempt the young East German Champion, Wolfgang Uhlmann, achieved a striking success in winning first prize with one of the highest scores ever made in the event. His coming first was not exactly a surprise, since he was reckoned to be first favourite beforehand. But that he would accomplish it with 8 points out of 9, a full point ahead of Portisch, could not have been previously envisaged. And yet he had no luck. His score was strictly in accordance with the merits of his play. Strong though he is in attack—witness his beautiful win over Darga—it is his defensive play that is most impressive. Time and again at Hastings he conducted the defence with wonderful accuracy and went over to the counter-attack at just the right moment. One can confidently predict that at this rate it will not be long before he gains the grandmaster title.

In coming second with 7 points, the twenty-one-year-old Portisch certainly made a successful debut at Hastings. All the same, I don’t think he was playing at his best and he was a little lucky in some of his games. This was not quite the form he displayed at Balatonfured in the summer of 1958.

Quite the reverse impression is given by Gereben’s third place. Promoted from the Premier Reserves at the last moment he fought and worked like a Trojan, with the result that he came at least two places higher than anyone could have imagined.

Darga also had a strange result. Usually a solid player whom it is very difficult to beat, he seemed to have quite other ideas at Hastings, alternating win with loss so that by the time the penultimate round had been reached his score consisted of four wins and three losses. With 1½ out of his last two games he very nearly levered himself into the prize list—but not quite. Apropos of this, one feels it is high time Hastings got into line with other international events and gave half as many prizes as there are competitors—even if this means readjusting the top prizes so as to be able to award another two. Three prizes amongst ten players is an absurdly small number.

Dückstein failed to maintain his reputation as a giant killer here. Considering that in the past year he had defeated both Euwe and Botwinnik one would certainly have anticipated from him a much higher score than a half out of his games against the top four. Still, this talented and amiable master lent lustre to Hastings and will certainly be welcome there again—when he may do better against harder opposition.

Now, alas, we come to the British contingent. Alas, because none of them seemed anywhere near their best form. Peter Clarke’s play, for some reason or another, was pervaded by an unusual and uncharacteristic apathy and he never seemed really to get going. Wade certainly got going—but sometimes it was in the wrong direction. Excellent play was interspersed with some very wrong-headed ideas—contrast the slashing game he won against Barden with his suicidal brevity against Uhlmann.

Fuster was—Fuster, the player who has no regard for his clock or for the feelings of the unfortunate tournament controller whose duty it is to observe whether the players have exceeded the time-limit. He tells me, however, that he is now determined to mend his ways and maintain a decorous pace with his moves, in which case he should indeed be much more successful. Radojcic found the promotion from the Premier Reserves heavy going. He take too many chances to hope to do well against good master opposition. Finally, Barden was completely out of form. Some cynic had observed that the tradition at Hastings was for the British Champion to come a resounding bottom and that in Barden the tournament possess the nearest approach to such a figure, since he had tied for first place at the last British Championship. Consequently Barden was merely maintaining a long standing tradition and could not be blamed for his poor performance. Possibly a real reason for his bad showing lies in an excess of chess; for he spoilt a number of promising positions by a dearth of constructive ideas. From bitter personal experience, however, I can vouch for the difficulty a chess journalist has in avoiding this trap.

To sum up—this was an interesting Hastings in which one player, Uhlmann, played really distinguished chess, but a number of others were rather disappointing.

Round 1, Monday, December 29th
Barden 0-1 Gereben Evans Gambit 40
Fuster 0-1 Darga Queen's Pawn 36
Portisch ½-½ Uhlmann QP Grünfeld Def 45
Clarke ½-½ Dückstein English 31
Radojcic ½-½ Wade Sicilian 41

Barden never really recovered from the shock of finding himself met with a new move in the defence against the Evans (it turned out later not to have been new). Fuster established a clearly drawn position against Darga and then reverted to type by spoiling it all in time-trouble.

The chance of the draw brought the two strongest players together in the first round. But, instead of playing for the conventional grandmaster draw, both Portisch and Uhlmann were animated by a laudable desire to win and the draw was a just and fair result.

Clarke played very nicely against Dückstein and had rather the better position for most of the game, but never enough for winning purposes. The remaining game was a rather wild affair in which the weapons used were rather yataghans than rapiers.

Round 2, Tuesday, December 30th
Uhlmann 1-0 Clarke QP Nimzowitsch Def 65
Dückstein 1-0 Radojcic Ponziani 37
Gereben ½-½ Wade Sicilian 64
Barden ½-½ Fuster QGD Slav 48
Darga 0-1 Portisch Sicilian 26

A short video clip of this round is available online. My thanks to Ulrich Tamm for drawing my attention to this. JS

An important round for differentiating the players: that is, for indicating which were likely to be playing for the top places. Uhlmann gradually wore down Clarke’s resistance in a game that was twice adjourned. Dückstein caught out Radojcic in an obsolete opening with which the Yugoslav proved quite unfamiliar. In consequence he adopted an inferior defence and always looked like losing. Gereben and Wade had a long and evenly-contested struggle [which began 1 e4 c5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bc4 g6 4 0-0 Bg7 though we cannot be sure of the move order - JS]

The Barden-Fuster game, as is inevitable in any game with which Fuster is connected, was dominated by the effect of time-trouble. In the first half of a time-scramble Fuster lost two pawns; in the remaining half Barden returned the two.

Darga dug his own grave in the following efficient manner—[game score]

Round 3, Wednesday, December 31st
Wade 0-1 Dückstein French Def 29
Clarke 0-1 Darga Sicilian 27
Portisch ½-½ Barden QP King's Indian Def 52
Radojcic 0-1 Uhlmann French 44
Fuster 0-1 Gereben QP King's Indian Def 53

This was a black day in the tournament; the reader will pardon me the slight pun, but since this was eradicated from my report by a ruthless sub-editor of a newspaper, I was determined that it should appear somewhere. Anyway, it is rare to see Black scoring 4½ out of 5 points and not all the games went exactly as they should have done.

Wade had prospects of a fine attack against Dückstein, but spoilt them by making an advance that was contrary to the nature of the position.

Clarke let off his opponent in even more striking fashion. |n the diagrammed position, instead of playing simply 18 KtxP when White’s pressure, direct and indirect, on K B 7 should ensure him a won game, he continued: 18 Kt—Q 5, KtxKt; 19 PxKt, P—R3; 20 P—Q 6, Q R—Q 1; 21 BxP, BxB; 22 QxB, P—K5; 23 Kt—Q 4, RxP; 24 Kt—Kt 5, R x R; 25 R x R, P—K 6; 26 P—B 3, QxKtP; 27 QxP, P—K7; White resigns.

The one bright spot of the round from the home point of view was Barden’s excellent play against Portisch. In fact, but for some time-trouble, he might well have won the game.

Radojcic blundered early on against Uhlmann and lost a lot of pawns; whilst Fuster spoilt his position against Gereben through (yes, you have guessed it) acute time-trouble.

Round 4, Thursday, January 1st
Gereben 1-0 Dückstein Queen's Gambit Accepted 42
Uhlmann 1-0 Wade Queen's Gambit Accepted 16
Darga 1-0 Radojcic QP Dutch Defence 26
Barden 0-1 Clarke QP Nimzowitsch Defence 40
Fuster ½-½ Portisch Queen's Gambit Accepted 51

A lively round with something worthy of note happening in each game. Gereben sprung a surprise by beating Dückstein—on this day, at any rate, he was certainly a better player than Duckstein. Wade lost the following catastrophic little game—

Radoicic played much too wildly against Darga and lost a piece. Barden started on a series of losses that was only to end with the tournament. This time he got into a position with absolutely no future—except for Black.

Portisch had established a won game but in the diagrammed position, instead of playing 38...Kt—Q 6 ch, which wins in a few moves, he committed the mistake of 38 . . ., PxP?, which led only to a draw after 39 PxP, Kt—Q6 ch; 40 BxKt ch, KxB; 41 P—Kt 5 (a resource White would not have had if Black had not exchanged pawns), PxP; 42 PxP, K—K5; 43 K—B 2, K—B 4; 44 K—Kt 3, KxP; 45 KxP, K—Kt 5; 46 K—B 5, P—B4; 47 K—Q 4, K—B6; 48 P—R 4, K—Kt 5; 49 K—K 5, P—B 5; 50 P—R 5, P—B 6; 51 P—R 6, drawn.

Round 5, Saturday, January 3rd
Clarke 1-0 Fuster Sicilian 28
Portisch 1-0 Gereben QP King's Indian Def 41
Radojcic 1-0 Barden Sicilian 47
Wade 1-0 Darga English 73
Dückstein 0-1 Uhlmann French 54

Uhlmann now definitely took the lead by winning a most accurately played ending against Dückstein after having to withstand quite a formidable attack in the late middle game. His chief rival, Gereben, after attaining quite a satisfactory position against Portisch, spoilt it all in acute time-trouble. Clarke won with a nice attack against Fuster, who, needless to say, was under great time-pressure for most of the game, Barden went astray in some complications and also under some time-pressure, whilst Wade scored a meritorious victory over the West German master Darga.

Round 6, Sunday, January 4th
Gereben 0-1 Uhlmann QP King's Indian Def 45
Darga 1-0 Dückstein Ruy Lopez 46
Barden 0-1 Wade French 23
Fuster 1-0 Radojcic Queen's Gambit Declined 138
Portisch 1-0 Clarke QP King's Indian Def 52

The very long game between Fuster and Radojcic was actually the last game to finish of he whole congress and was going on during the prize-giving ceremony on the last day, though, of course, it had no effect on the destination of the prizes.

Uhlmann again disposed of one of his nearest rivals in this round and Darga was rather lucky to score a win against Dückstein, who blundered in the second session of play when he seemed to have at least the draw in hand.

Portisch always held the upper hand against Clarke and won neatly in the ending, whilst Wade won the following incisive game against Barden.

Round 7, Monday, January 5th
Clarke 0-1 Gereben QP King's Indian Def 40
Radojcic 0-1 Portisch Sicilian 41
Wade ½-½ Fuster QGD Slav 41
Dückstein 1-0 Barden Sicilian 58
Uhlmann 1-0 Darga QP Nimzowitsch Def 30

This round was distinguished by the best game of the tournament. Uhlmann was in his best form and won a beautiful game full of pleasing touches. Already he seemed pretty safe for first place.

Portisch had an easy enough win over Radojcic, who played much too loosely and lost no less than three pawns. Gereben maintained his third place by a good win over Clarke, in which he sacrificed a piece for two pawns and a strong attack. Wade was quite lost against Fuster until the latter’s besetting sin of time-trouble allowed him a draw by perpetual check. Dückstein won fairly comfortably against Barden, who again suffered from a dearth of ideas.

Round 8, Tuesday, January 6th
Fuster 0-1 Dückstein QP 40
Gereben ½-½ Darga QP King's Indian Def 50
Barden 0-1 Uhlmann French 31
Portisch 1-0 Wade King's Indian Opening 35
Clarke 1-0 Radojcic English 40

After some early uncomfortable moments against Barden, Uhlmann broke through the British player’s defences with a swift counter-attack and this win virtually decided the destination the first prize. He had a lead of 1 point with one round to go and was very unlikely to lose to Fuster in the last round.

Portisch took exemplary advantage of Wade’s unsound pawn formation and looked just as certain to gain second prize as Uhlmann was of first place.

I scored a vicarious triumph in this round, since Clarke adopted my variation of the English against Radojcic and persuaded his opponent to surrender a couple of pawns after the opening (presumably) had done its poisonous work.

Fuster, in addition to his usual time-trouble was outplayed by Dückstein in some middlegame complications and the draw between Gereben and Darga was justified by the level nature of the game.

Round 9, Wednesday, January 7th
Radojcic 0-1 Gereben Ruy Lopez 45
Wade ½-½ Clarke English 60
Dückstein ½-½ Portisch French 41
Uhlmann ½-½ Fuster QGD 16
Darga 1-0 Barden QP King's Indian Def 43

A quick draw by Uhlmann (equalling in length the other shortest game of the tournament which he had won against Wade) made him sure of first prize. Portisch had to struggle considerably harder against Dückstein before he achieved his draw. Wade and Clarke came down to a Rook and pawn ending in which at one time or another both had winning chances—with the natural result of a draw. Radojcic was unable to sustain Gereben's continued pressure and Barden, after doing very well for most of the game against Darga, wantonly weakened his own King’s side to succumb to a mating attack.

1958/59 Hastings Premier Reserves Major

1958/59 Hastings Prem Res Major Nat'y 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10  Total 
1 Hermann Heemsoth Bremen
½ ½ ½ 1 ½ 0 1 1 1 6
2 Wilhelm Rautenberg W Germany ½
1 0 ½ 1 1 ½ ½ 1 6
3 Zdravko Gabrovsek Yugoslavia ½ 0
1 1 ½ ½ ½ 1 ½
4 Kenneth W Lloyd Birmingham ½ 1 0
1 ½ ½ ½ 1 ½
5 Milos Vasiljevic Yugoslavia 0 ½ 0 0
1 1 1 1 1
6 Derek G Horseman Coventry ½ 0 ½ ½ 0
½ ½ ½ 1 4
7 Andrew Rowland B Thomas Tiverton 1 0 ½ ½ 0 ½
½ ½ ½ 4
8 Dennis M Horne Wolverley 0 ½ ½ ½ 0 ½ ½
½ ½
9 Dr Stefan Fazekas Buckhurst Hill 0 ½ 0 0 0 ½ ½ ½
10 Ronald A Fuller Ipswich 0 0 ½ ½ 0 0 ½ ½ ½

Probable draw order for this section: 1. Lloyd, 2. Gabrowsek, 3. Fuller, 4. Rautenberg, 5. Vasiljevic, 6. Horseman, 7. Fazekas, 8. Thomas, 9. Heemsoth, 10. Horne (using standard Berger pairings).

This was a most evenly contested tournament but the quality of the play was low and the standard never recovered from the sudden transference of two of the best players to the Premier. Of the home players, Lloyd made the best fight for a leading place and A. R. B. Thomas, after starting in miserable fashion, played much better chess in the latter half of the event.

1958/59 Hastings Premier Reserves A

1958/59 Hastings Prem Reserves A Nat'y 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10  Total 
1 John Dudley Taylor Wakefield
1 ½ 1 0 1 ½ 1 ½ 1
2 Dr K Reinhard Cherubim W Germany 0
1 1 ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ 1 6
3 Pierre Berlacki France ½ 0
0 1 ½ ½ 1 1 1
4 Allert Kerje Sweden 0 0 1
½ 0 1 1 1 1
5 A A van der Willigen Netherlands 1 ½ 0 ½
0 1 0 1 1 5
6 P Guillaume France 0 ½ ½ 1 1
½ 0 0 1
7 (Derek) George Ellison Bolton ½ 0 ½ 0 0 ½
1 1 ½ 4
8 Dr V Dekker Netherlands 0 ½ 0 0 1 1 0
1 0
9 Percy B Cook Ilford ½ ½ 0 0 0 1 0 0
10 M J Jacobson Netherlands 0 0 0 0 0 0 ½ 1 ½

1958/59 Hastings Premier Reserves B

1958/59 Hastings Prem Reserves B Nat'y 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10  Total 
1 Ronald MacKay Bruce Plymouth
0 1 1 1 1 1 0 ½ 1
2 Heinrich Jühe W Germany 1
0 1 1 0 ½ 1 1 1
3 Harry Gethin Thorp Matchett Birmingham 0 1
1 ½ 0 ½ 1 1 ½
4 Alan Edgar Nield Australia 0 0 0
1 ½ ½ 1 1 1 5
5 James J Walsh Dublin 0 0 ½ 0
1 ½ 1 1 1 5
6 Otto H Hardy Batley 0 1 1 ½ 0
1 0 0 1
7 Robert Hans Pinner Richmond 0 ½ ½ ½ ½ 0
½ ½ ½
8 John R Cooke Walthamstow 1 0 0 0 0 1 ½
0 ½ 3
9 Leopold Franz Lindheimer London ½ 0 0 0 0 1 ½ 1
0 3
10 (Patricia) Anne Sunnucks London 0 0 ½ 0 0 0 ½ ½ 1

Probable draw order for this section: 1. Hardy, 2. Pinner, 3. Walsh, 4. Sunnucks, 5. Cooke, 6. Matchett, 7. Nield, 8. Bruce, 9. Jühe, 10. Lindheimer. However, it seems that some games involving Walsh (and possibly others) were played on different dates to those scheduled.

Premier Reserves C.—1-2 Peter W Hempson, Michael W Wills 7½/9; 3 Norman Henry Stewart Lavers 6; 4-6 Mrs Rowena M Bruce, Philip J Meade, Bernard Landon Wilkinson 4½; 7 Fred Clough 4; 8 J. Johnson 3½; 9 David Ewan MacNab 2; 10 Richard Edward Boxall 1.

Premier Reserves D.—1 J L Warren 6½/9; 2 Harald Keiter 6; 3 David Futter 5½; 4-5 Kenneth George Percy Gunnell, Adrian Picton Rossiter Lewis 5; 6 Percival Arthur Cooke 4½; 4-9 Herbert Francis Gook, C. Nicole, Harold Horace Watts 3½; 10 Percival Charles Hembest 2.

Premier Reserves E.—1 Lawrence Lipking 8½/9; 2 Michael R B Clarke 7½; 3 J Murrell 6; 4 G Tanfield 5½; 5-6 William Leonard Brierley, J Gordon Lloyd 4; 7 Leslie Elliott Fletcher 3½; 8 Edward William Jarah 2½; 9 John Myles Gorton 2; 10 Reginald John Manfield 1½.

Premier Reserves F.—1 M. Jackson 7/9; 2 Richard Charles Winter 6½; 3 P. Merrett 5½; 4 Oscar Serck 4½; 5-7 Miss Lesley Fletcher, Geoffrey George Homan, J. F. Pell 4; 8 Alfred Milner 3½; 9-10 (Edward) Douglas Fawcett, A. K. Henderson 3.

It was in this section that the Congress Treasurer, R. C. Winter, pursued the unorthodox course (for a congress official) of winning a prize; deservedly so, as the following brilliant finish shows.

From the diagrammed position play continued: 1 B—Q B2, QxR ch; 2 BxQ, RxB ch; 3 B—Kt 1, B—B 4; 4 P—R 4, Rx B ch; 5 K—R 2, R—Q 8; 6 Q—B 3, K R—Q 1; 7 RxP, R(Q 1)—Q 6; 8 Q—B5, B—Kt 8 ch; 9 K—R1, B—B7 ch; 10 K—R 2, B—Kt 6 ch; 11 K—R 3, R—R 8 ch; 12 K—Kt 4, RxP mate.

Premier Reserves, Afternoon.—1 Alfred Dempster Whyte 7/8; 2-3 H C Ellis, George A Peck 5; 4-7 Rev. Henry Middleton Blackett, Jack Horrocks, Ronald Ernest Rushbrook, Willington L Wakefield 3½; 8 B Shaw 3; 9 Ernest George Excell 2.

Open A.—1 Anthony G Frish 7/9; 2-4 Michael P Cook, (Edmond) Julien T Leyns, D. C. Morton 6; 5-6 William John Clare Hart Burges, Rupert Aleck Selway 4½; 7 Gregory Owen J Melitus 3½; 8-9 J. H. Brown, H. G. White 3; 10 Miss K. Whyte 1½.

Open B.—1 R. J. Raymont 8/9; 2-4 A. E. Blades, Mrs Jean Marjorie Gunnell (née Hawkins), Albert Edward Oram, M.P. 6½; 5 Harold Edward Druce 5½; 6 Peter Bernard Ginner 4; 7 C. Berry 3½; 8 Sqdn.-Ldr. Wrensch 3; 9 Mrs. Laura Ethel Amelia Start (née Whitehouse) 1; 10 Miss Elsie Grace Coulson ½.

1958/59 Hastings One-Week Open A

1958/59 Hastings One-Week Open A Nat'y 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8  Total 
1 Clifford George Hilton Manchester
1 0 1 ½ 1 1 1
2 Michael E Ventham Southampton 0
½ 1 1 1 1 1
3 Joseph M Soesan Ilford 1 ½
0 1 1 ½ 1 5
4 Alex Montwill Dublin 0 0 1
0 1 1 ½
5 John Todhunter Keable Croydon ½ 0 0 1
½ ½ ½ 3
6 Dr P Chadwick NW London 0 0 0 0 ½
½ 1 2
7 T McKelvie Edinburgh 0 0 ½ 0 ½ ½
½ 2
8 Leslie Valentine Robert Elgy SW London 0 0 0 ½ ½ 0 ½

One Week Open B.—1 William Bainbridge 5½/7; 2 Peter Tillson 5; 3-4 H. B. Howard, Robert H Mellor 4½; 5 T. E. Waits 4; 6 R. Sheppard 2; 7 D. Clandfield 1½; 8 G. Hollis 1.

One Week Open C.—1 M. N. Forster 5½/7; 2-3 Roger L Baker, Patric Kirtlan 4½; 4 David Rowcliffe R Ellis 4; 5 A. R. Palmer 3½; 6-7 Gordon Othon Esher, A. G. Ransley 3; 10 J. Beynon 0.

Practically every congress has its stalemate incident. In this section there occurred a stalemate plus legal (or rather illegal) fracas. In the diagrammed position Black failed to observe that he was in check and played Q—B8 ch. The tournament controller, Mr. Glyde, was called to the board and, since Black could make a legal move with his Queen, he ruled that he must do so.

Play went: 1...Q—K 5; 2 R—Kt 6, Q x Q??; 3 RxPch!, forcing a draw by stalemate. Vaguely we discern a moral here.

One Week Open D: (1) (Frederick) Michael Akeroyd 6½/7; (2) E. Chambers 5½; (3) Lewis James Worsell 5; (4) V. Cheshire 3½; (5-6) Dr. Frederick Bromley Akeroyd, D. Wellman 3; (7) J. Bilsby 1½; (8) P. Vidler 0.

CHESS, Vol.24, no.331-2, 28 January 1959, ppn 110-112

Hastings 1958-9

Opening the congress, the Federal German Ambassador to Britain, Baron Hans von Herwarth, confided that he had played chess for his school until his headmaster had told him that his muscles were developing better than his brain, and transferred him to athletics.

Barden opened with an Evans Gambit against Gereben who set up a defence which, though a rook at QR2 was hemmed in behind pawns at QR3 and QN2, proved unbreachable, and always good value for Barden’s sacrifices. After this, Barden played for the rest of the event as if his defeat at Penrose’s hands in the British Championship play-off had knocked the stuffing out of him.

Wade drew with Radoicic by a resourceful queen sacrifice in a desperate-looking situation.

Uhlmann, in what was to prove his hardest game, adjourned a pawn down against Portisch; a pretty worthless pawn however, and he secured a draw subsequently without much trouble. That was round one.

Fuster ran horribly short of time in his every game. He and Barden made it a mutual affair in round two; for their last seventeen moves prior to the control, Barden left himself about 2½ minutes, Fuster less than a minute. The moves were made and the game eventually drawn.

In round four, Wade hit the headlines by losing horribly to Uhlmann. By the end of this round, no home player had yet beaten a visitor. With the weakest outside opposition for years, this was disappointing. Next round, however, Wade himself led a revival, adjourning against Darga with two rooks each and level pawns but with two of his own pawns united and far advanced; he determinedly nursed his advantage to a win next day. Meanwhile Clarke was taking a point from Fuster; he was ruthless against tail-enders.

Round six brought Uhlmann a hectic struggle. A weak move in the opening allowed Dueckstein to bind up his king’s wing rather horribly; but the Austrian, weakening badly in face of Uhlmann’s stubborn defence, iet slip not only a potential win but then a cast-iron draw.

Possibly the most interesting seventh-round game was that between Clarke and Gereben, who sacrificed a knight for two pawns; the positional compensation seemed nebulous but Gereben’s pawns came down the board in a crushing steam-roller wave.

Wade was lucky, Fuster queening over-hastiiy and, with two helpless queens having to submit to a perpetual check.

The best played game of the tournament, Uhlmann v Darga gains an honoured place among Games elsewhere in this issue.

So the tournament moved on quietly— too quietly for those, especially among the men-in-the-street, who recalled that Alexander v Bronstein furore of not so long ago —to a somewhat foregone conclusion.

Fuster and Radoicic contributed humour to the final stages by concluding a 138-move game (the longest, they say, ever played in an international tournament at Hastings), long after the prizegiving was over. This had originally been a Rd. 5 game; it had been adjourned at one a.m. the same morning, prior to the last session which took it to a total of fifteen hours.

Twenty or more congress players and visitors co-operated in a rather light-hearted T. V. programme which went over very well indeed.

Uhlmann’s strength seems to lie largely in his versatility. He revealed himself as equally accomplished in patient defence (as against Gereben and Portisch), speculative attack (as against Darga) and subtle positional manoeuvering (as against Clarke).
From the Bulgarian Chess Federation, came a plaint that no Bulgarian had ever played at Hastings. The Federation has been offered a place in next year’s Premier for whomsoever they care to nominate.

Another who has already been granted a place in the next Premier is 52-year-old W. A. Winser, twelve times Hastings champion, seven times Sussex champion.

140 competed in all, including seven women.

There were four Hungarian players in this year’s Premier at Hastings; as the worthy Foldeak points out, Dückstein as
well as Portisch, Gereben and Fuster was a Magyar born, before becoming naturalised Austrian. That the official Hungarian champion could compete in a tournament with three emigrés from his country, in perfect harmony, speaks volumes for the relaxation of political tensions in Europe, it is not so long since Russia angrily withdrew her nominees because a Spaniard had been invited.


There can be few events as strong but as poorly publicised as Hastings Reserves tournaments; they are always overshadowed by the Premier, though it has not always been much stronger.

For this year’s best game, Heemsoth’s fantastic win against Horne, we hope to find space later. The Cambridge undergraduate K. W. Lloyd from Birmingham (younger brother of D. E.) again narrowly failed to secure first place and thereby qualify for the 1959-60 Premier. He started poorly but a rather lucky victory over Vasiljevic started him on a run of successes. A round before the last, a pawn up against A. R. B. Thomas, he seemed to have the prize in his grasp; but the West Countryman with a typically stubborn defensive effort, secured a draw.

The scores show clearly how evenly the P. R. Major was contested.

Rautenberg and Heemsoth are to play a match in Germany for the coveted place in next year’s Premier.

File Updated

Date Notes
(some years ago) 13 out of 45 Premier games previously uploaded as part of a collection of Hastings games
2 June 2022 Uploaded in the current format, adding 4 games from subsidiary sections, crosstable, etc.
3 June 2022 Added some more games from the Premier and other events; added crosstables, results and magazine reports. The additional Premier material: (1) complete game Portisch-Clarke (rd 6); (2) 21 opening moves from Barden-Gereben (rd 1); (3) first nine moves of Radojcic-Uhlmann (rd 3); (4) final part of Darga-Dückstein (rd 6); (5) final few moves from Fuster-Portisch (rd 4). My thanks to Ulrich Tamm for most of this new material. EDIT: another game from Reserves B has just arrived: J.Walsh 1-0 O.Hardy (rd 3). Many thanks to Andy Ansel.
4 June 2022 Added 2½ more games played by Jim Walsh in Premier Reserves B: (1) the complete score of his 6th round game v Ron Bruce, replacing the part-game already in place; (2) rd 4 v L.Lindheimer; (3) rd 5 v P.A.Sunnucks. Many thanks to Sean Coffey for submitting these via the English Chess Forum. Running total now 14+4 Premier games, 16 from subsidiary events.
5 June 2022 Two more Premier part-games added: (1) Portisch ½-½ Uhlmann (rd 1 - the last two half-moves of the game); (2) Gereben ½-½ Wade (rd 2 - the first few moves of the game, 1 e4 c5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bc4 g6 4 Nc3 Bg7 5 0-0, can be observed on this video clip of the tournament). Many thanks to Ulrich Tamm for drawing my attention to these items.