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Tournament: 119th Varsity Match • Venue: RAC Club, Pall Mall, London • Date: 3 March 2001
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John Saunders reports: The 119th Varsity Chess Match between Oxford University and Cambridge University was held at the RAC Club, Pall Mall, London on 3 March 2001. The match sponsors were Tony Buzan, the Buzan Group and Henry Mutkin. Match arbiters were IM Bob Wade - the 50th anniversary of his first time as officiator - and David Sedgwick.

Bd Oxford University
Rating
Nat
2½-5½
Cambridge University
Rating
Nat
1b Kieran Smallbone (New)
2147
ENG
0-1
Karl Mah (Pembroke)
2404m
ENG
2w Joel Eklund (University)
2130
SWE
1-0
Jack Rudd (Girton)
2178
ENG
3b Melanie Buckley (St Hilda's)
2114
ENG
0-1
James Vigus (Clare)
2281f
ENG
4w Shashi Jayakumar (Balliol)
(2104)
SIN
½-½
Eddie Dearing (Peterhouse)
2274
SCO
5b Tim Chesters (Balliol)
(2096)
ENG
0-1
David Moskovic (Queens')
2252
ENG
6w Oliver Rosten (Somerville)
2050e
ENG
½-½
Joe Conlon (Christ's)
2170
ENG
7b Heather Lang (St Anne's)
2058
SCO
0-1
Nathan Alfred (King's)
2208
ENG
8w James Clifford (New)
(1888)
ENG
½-½
Iva Anguelov (St Catharine's)
2062
ENG
  Av. Rating 2073.2
2½-5½
Av. Rating 2228.6

Ratings in brackets are derived from national (BCF) grades.

This match marked two milestones: the 90th anniversary of the host venue's RAC Chess Circle and the 50th anniversary since IM Bob Wade shared arbiter's duties at the match.

Oxford were outrated on every board, but put up a spirited fight. Grandmaster onlookers felt that a score of 4-4 had been a probability until the final phase of play. The last games to finish were boards 3 and 7 where Oxford's two women competitors succumbed after a hard fight, to leave Cambridge victors by the slightly flattering margin of 5½-2½. Cambridge now leads the overall series by four wins.

© 2001 John Saunders, all photos and text - not to be used without permission