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John Saunders


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Tournament: 140th Varsity Match • Venue: RAC, Pall Mall, London • Date: 12 March 2022
Download PGNList of Varsity Matches • Back to 2021 • Forward to 2023edited Monday May 1, 2023 7:17 PM

John Saunders reports: The 140th Varsity Chess Match between Oxford University and Cambridge University was held at the Royal Automobile Club, Pall Mall, London on 12 March 2022. The match sponsors were the Royal Automobile Club. The chief match arbiter was Matthew Carr who was also in charge of operating the live boards. Oxford won the toss and chose White on odd boards.

2021«     2022 Varsity Chess Match     »2023
Bd Oxford University Rating Nat 2022 Cambridge University Rating Nat
1w Tom O'Gorman (Hertford) 2357f IRL 1-0 Matthew J Wadsworth (Queens') 2432m ENG
2b Filip Mihov (Balliol, captain) 2255 MKD 0-1 Harry Grieve (St Catharine's) 2381f ENG
3w Victor Vasiesiu (Hertford) 2276f ROU ½-½ Koby Kalavannan (St Catharine's) 2324f ENG
4b Daniel Karim Abbas (Magdalen) 2228f ENG ½-½ Miroslav Macko (Trinity) 2273f SVK
5w Max French (Wadham) 2231 ENG 0-1 Jan Petr (Trinity) 2282f CZE
6b Dominic Miller (Somerville) 2123 ENG 1-0 Declan Shafi (Pembroke, captain) 2188 SCO
7w Akshaya Kalaiyalahan (Regent's Park) 2153f ENG 1-0 Ognjen Stefanovic (Trinity) 2109 SRB
8b Daniel Sutton (St John's) 1877 ENG ½-½ Imogen A L Camp (Queens') 1829wc WLS
  Av. Rating = 2187.5     4½-3½ Av. Rating = 2227.2 2239.1    

Oxford reserve: Alexandre Warr-Esser (St Anne's - FRA 1921). Cambridge reserve: Ognjen Stefanovic (Trinity - SRB 2109)

N.B. Daniel G H Gallagher (Pembroke - 2204 ENG) dropped out (unwell) - Stefanovic comes in on board 7.

First blood to Cambridge on board 2 as Harry Grieve overcomes Filip Mihov. Cambridge 1, Oxford 0.

4:35pm: at the time control Oxford overtake Cambridge with wins on boards 6 and 7. Akshaya Kalaiyalahan had been winning for a long time but Dominic Miller's win came out of the blue towards the end.

5.30pm: Tom O'Gorman scores a great win against Matthew Wadsworth on top board to put Oxford 3-1 ahead. A substantial lead but they have dodgy positions on remaining boards. Can Cambridge fight back?

5.36pm "Board four is on a different timescale from the rest of us - they could still be here next week." A wry comment from former (1970s) Cambridge Varsity player Richard Eales on the Macko-Abbas game, where hardly any material has yet come off the board.

6.10pm: Cambridge win board five so the score is now Oxford 3, Cambridge 2.

6.15pm: a draw on board three. Oxford 3½, Cambridge 2½. Two games to go.

6.25pm Board 4 drawn quickly followed by a draw on board eight so Oxford won by the odd point.

2022 Oxford Varsity team
Oxford team: back, left to right: Victor Vasiesiu, Tom O'Gorman, Daniel Karim Abbas, Daniel Sutton.
Front, left to right: Dominic Miller, Filip Mihov (captain), AkShaya Kalaiyalahan, Max French

2022 Cambridge Varsity team
Cambridge team: back, left to right: Miroslav Macko, Matthew Wadsworth, Imogen Camp, Harry Grieve.
Front, left to right: Jan Petr, Declan Shafi (captain), Ognjen Stefanovic, Koby Kalavannan

© 2022 John Saunders, all photos and text - not to be used without permission

File Updated

Date Notes
11 March 2022 Uploaded team lists.
9 July 2022 Andy Ansel alerted me to a difference in the game score of O'Gorman-Wadsworth: the score generated by the DGT board had 40 Bh1 but the score as annotated by O'Gorman and published in CHESS, May 2022 has 40 Be4. I have inserted the latter as a note. The position soon transposes anyway.