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Tournament: 27th Hastings Premier 1951/52 (won by Gligoric) Go to: Previous YearNext Year • updated June 7, 2022 3:21 PM
Venue: White Rock Pavilion • Dates: 27 December 1951 - 5 January 1952 • Download PGN (45/45 Premier games + 16 games from subsidiary events)

1951/52 Hastings Premier, 27 December 1951 - 5 January 1952, White Rock Pavilion

1951/52 Hastings Premier Nat'y/Resid 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10  Total 
1 Svetozar Gligoric Yugoslavia
&;
½ ½ ½ 1 1 1 1 1 1
2 Daniel Abraham Yanofsky Canada ½
&;
½ ½ ½ ½ 1 1 1 ½ 6
3 Lothar Schmid West Germany ½ ½
&;
½ ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ 1
4 Leonard W Barden Oxford Univ ½ ½ ½
&;
½ 0 ½ ½ ½ 1
5 Jan Hein Donner Netherlands 0 ½ ½ ½
&;
1 0 1 1 0
6 Stephan Popel France 0 ½ ½ 1 0
&;
1 ½ 1 0
7 Andrew R B Thomas Tiverton 0 0 0 ½ 1 0
&;
1 ½ ½
8 Gerald Abrahams Liverpool 0 0 ½ ½ 0 ½ 0
&;
½ 1 3
9 Harry Golombek Chalfont St Giles 0 0 ½ ½ 0 0 ½ ½
&;
1 3
10 David V Hooper Reigate 0 ½ 0 0 1 1 ½ 0 0
&;
3

BCM, February 1952, ppn 33-40

TWENTY-SEVENTH HASTINGS CHRISTMAS CONGRESS, DECEMBER 27th [1951] to JANUARY 5th [1952]

By H. Golombek

THIS was opened by Lord Brabazon of Tara at 3.45 p.m. on December 27th, at the White Rock Pavilion. There was a gratifyingly large number of competitors (130) and many of the sections were stronger too from the playing point of view than for some years. The Premier Section was distinguished by one grandmaster—Gligoric—and some of the more promising of the younger school of masters—Yanofsky, Schmid, and Donner.

For various reasons, however, the British contingent was weaker than usual. I was completely out of form and perpetrated enough blunders to last over half a dozen tournaments. Whilst I am about it I may as well give what I regard as the explanation (hardened and practised readers may skip this paragraph). For some months previous to the tournament I had been very hard at work writing a book and I came to Hastings with a mind that had become jaded with chess. Still, my failure does not account for the whole story; probably we were missing somebody of the quality of Alexander, who, with the memory of his victory over Gligoric in the Centenary Tournament, might well have broken the charmed spell that seemed to protect the Jugoslav grandmaster.

Gligoric was a firm favourite before the tournament started and in coming first, 1½ points ahead of the nearest competitor, he did all that was expected of him. Even so, and this may seem strange at first glance, he was not in his best form. Twice he was in grave danger of defeat; once against Schmid, who won a piece and then badly weakened to allow a draw, and then against myself, who by a series of blunders managed to convert a winning position into a loss. He seemed to be playing himself into form towards the end and won two impressive games against Abrahams and Hooper. We all await with keen interest his further performances in this year’s Interzonal.

Yanofsky came a solid second, chiefly by virtue of tenacity and an inability (which the rest of us rather resented) to commit blunders. One wishful spectator even went so far as to say with a sigh that he was waiting for the day when Yanofsky would make a mistake. Lothar Schmid too did not lose a game; but his chess was of a much more up-and-down nature.

Barden came first amongst the British players and this was his best performance so far. Indeed, had he won against Popel—as he might well have done—he would have been high up in the prize list. Donner started off in shocking style and for some time looked like a candidate for bottom place. But he made a remarkable recovery with the score of 3½ out of his last four games.

Popel had an intriguing and (to his opponents) irritating habit of getting into very bad positions and then of extricating himself by ingenious tactical strokes—as might be expected from a player trained in the coffee houses of Paris.

As always Thomas produced some excellent combinative chess but was not particularly happy in positional encounters against the better players.

Though Hooper came equal bottom, paradoxically enough his was a promising debut in international chess. He only needs experience and hard practice to supply the necessary stiffening for a master player. The two games he won (against Donner and Popel) contained some delightful chess.

That Abrahams did badly is a fact for which the tournament table provides evidence. So powerful and full of colour is his personality that throughout the tournament I had the impression that either he was in the lead or else engaged in some super Premier Tournament conducted way up above my head at a speed faster than sound and with a brilliance too dazzling for the human eye. Anyway, whatever his results, a tournament without Abrahams would be the poorer for want of his wit.

What were the concrete achievements of the tournament? In endings practically nothing; rather more in the middle-game, and in the openings three important games—Gligoric-Abrahams, Hooper-Donner, and Schmid-Hooper. Ail three of these will be found in the Games Section.

1951/52 Hastings Premier Reserves Major

1951/52 Hastings Prem Res Major Nat'y/Resid 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10  Total 
1 Jonathan Penrose Hampstead
&;
½ ½ 1 1 1 ½ 1 ½ 1 7
2 Dennis Morton Horne Tunbridge Wells ½
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½ ½ 1 ½ 1 ½ ½ 1 6
3 Alan Phillips Buxton ½ ½
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½ ½ 0 ½ 1 ½ 1 5
4 Edward Guthlac Sergeant Kingston-upon-Thames 0 ½ ½
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0 ½ 1 ½ 1 1 5
5 William Ritson Morry Birmingham 0 0 ½ 1
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½ 1 1 ½ 0
6 John Arthur Fuller London 0 ½ 1 ½ ½
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0 0 ½ 1 4
7 Miroslav Radojcic Yugoslavia ½ 0 ½ 0 0 1
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1 1 0 4
8 Friedrich Sämisch West Germany 0 ½ 0 ½ 0 1 0
&;
1 ½
9 Eugene Znosko-Borovsky France ½ ½ ½ 0 ½ ½ 0 0
&;
1
10 Daniel E Mayers USA 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 ½ 0
&;

There were three prizes in this and all the other sections. As has already been pointed out the general level of strength was higher this year than for some time and this applies especially to the Major Section of the Premier Reserves, in which there was not a single weak player. All the more impressive, therefore, is the decisive victory of the eighteen-year-old Jonathan Penrose in this event. His convincing superiority is brought home to one after a study of the games played in this section—most of the really good ones emanate from him. He had originally refused an invitation to play in the Premier, but found himself able to play at Hastings after all. By this time, however, all the places in the Premier had been filled; hence his participation in the Premier Reserves.

Ritson-Morry came just outside the prize list. He started badly and only towards the end did he reproduce the form that brought him into one of the leading places in the last British Championship. He had the following entertaining finish against Sergeant (Diagram 4). 27 ..., P—K R 4; 28 Q—Q B 4 (the Queen has no good move; if 28 Q—B 3 or K 4, then B—B 3); RxKtl; White resigns.

The German master, Fritz Sämisch, lost four games by exceeding the time limit. It seems that Sämisch is interested, not so much in winning games, as in finding the exactly right move every time. The result was that he was already in time trouble round about the 12th move. So great was his devotion to chess that he never returned to his hotel for lunch but stayed behind in a corner of the playing room engrossed in analysis for hours on end. Truly one of the most quixotic figures in the whole chess world!

The results in the other sections were—

Premier Reserves A: 1 Ronald Blow (Windsor) 7½/9; 2 Hugh Courtney (Canterbury) 6½; 3 Baruch H Wood (Sutton Coldfield) 6; 4 Percy B Cook 5; 5-7 Dr. Michael Benger, John Bertram Goodman, J. Juhe 4; 8 Ian R Bradley (Doncaster) 3½; 9 Ronald M Bruce (Plymouth) 3; 10 A. E. Nield 1½.

1951/52 Hastings Prem Reserves B Nat'y/Resid 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10  Total 
1 Peter J Oakley Chesham
&;
½ ½ 1 1 ½ ½ 1 1 1 7
2 Peter A Harris Wolverhampton ½
&;
0 ½ 1 1 ½ 1 ½ 1 6
3 David Leslie Barrett Cambridge Univ ½ 1
&;
0 ½ 1 1 0 ½ 1
4 Lawrence Alfred John Glyde Barkingside 0 ½ 1
&;
0 1 ½ ½ 1 1
5 (Edmond) Noel Mulcahy Ireland 0 0 ½ 1
&;
0 ½ 1 1 1 5
6 Simonne Bussers Belgium ½ 0 0 0 1
&;
0 1 1 1
7 M J Jacobson Netherlands ½ ½ 0 ½ ½ 1
&;
1 ½ 0
8 Fenny Heemskerk Netherlands 0 0 1 ½ 0 0 0
&;
1 ½ 3
9 Sydney Hugh Brocklesby England 0 ½ ½ 0 0 0 ½ 0
&;
½ 2
10 Rowena Mary Bruce Plymouth 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 ½ ½
&;
2

Premier Reserves C: 1 Alan Forrest Stobo (Altrincham) 7½/9; 2 John Todhunter Keable (Croydon) 6½; 3-5 Brian Gluss, Frank Alan Hart (Cambridge), Bernard Landon Wilkinson (Chorley) 5; 6 G. F. Ramsay 4; 7-8 R. E. Lee-Johnson, Frank A Rhoden 3½; 9-10 Herbert Francis Gook, Everard Woods 2½.

Premier Reserves D: 1 Michael Davis (Hastings, aged 16) 7½/9; 2 Eric Howard Flear (Hastings) 6½; 3 P. Henley 6 (London); 4 D. Wagstaff 5; 5-6 Miss (Patricia) Anne Sunnucks, Ralph Carter Woodthorpe 4½; 7 Alfred Dempster Whyte 3½; 8 Capt. Hugh Windsor Fiesch Heneage 3; 9 H. Gardner 2½; 10 P. A. Cooke 2.

Major A: 1 J. Walker (Maidenhead) 7½/9; 2 Newman Clissold (New Brighton) 6; 3 H. C. Lewis (Carshalton) 5½; 4 K. E. C. Budge 5; 5-7 Miss Minnie Musgrave, Rev. Henry Middleton Blackett, A. Pickering 4½; 8 E Douglas Fawcett 3; 9 E. J. Seymour 2½; 10 Gregory Owen J Melitus 2.

Major B: 1 John H Beaty (R.A.F., Cardington) 7½/9; 2 Graham Russell Mitchell (Woking) 7; 3 Rodney E James (Banstead) 5; 4-5 George A Peck, Philip B Sarson 4½; 6-7 L. Calvert, Peter Hannan 4; 8-9 Eric Leyns, Patrick Humphrey Sullivan 3; 10 H. N. S. Heath 2½.

Major C: 1 John W Naylor (London) 7/8; 2 E. J. Simpson (Bognor Regis) 6½; 3 J. Greig (Luton) 5½; 4 A. S. Dance 4½; 5-7 B. Cirket, A. E. Harris, E. E. Weedon 3; 8 W. J. Burges 2; 9 L. H. Appleby 1½.

First Class (Mornings): 1 S. Dean (Romford) 8/9; 2-3 E Julien Leyns (Bishops Stortford), Reginald J Manfield (Chelmsford) 5½; 4-6 E. C. Baker, Geoffrey George Homan, Randall Stewart Thornton 5; 7-8 R. O. Bishop, Sir J. C. Walton 4; 9 Rev. H. C. de Barathy 2; 10 A. H. Harris 1.

First Class (Afternoons): 1 G. Booth (Westcliffe-on-Sea) 7½/8; 2 A. C. Hopkinson (Hastings) 6; 3 L. L. M. Jones (St Peter Port, Guernsey) 5; 4-5 F. E. Tanner, F. Willan 4½; 6 A. A. Angel 3½; 7-8 W. H. Jones, W. Summersby 2; 9 S. F. Dalladay 1.

Second Class (Mornings): 1 R. Kewley (Birkenhead) 7½/8; 2 D. Rose (Tottenham) 6½; 3 W. J. E. Hinkley (junior member, Hastings CC) 6; 4-5 Mrs. Helen Muriel Cobbold, R. E. Smith 4½; 6 Miss Barbara O’Kelly (Clontarf) 4; 7-8 Mrs. Laura Ethel Amelia Start (née Whitehouse), O. A. Keane 1½; 9 H. Robinson 0.

Third Class: 1 P. Crotty (London) 7/8; 2 P. Smith (junior member, Hastings CC) 6½; 3 F. Lambert (Liverpool) 5½; 4 T. Rich 5; 5 Miss Elizabeth (Beth) M Cassidy (Clontarf) 4½; 6 Miss Muriel Murphy (Clontarf) 3½; 7 S. G. Mead 2½; 8 Mrs. H. M. T. Cahan 1½; 9 Miss G. M. Flynn 0.

Simone Bussers (Belgium)
Simonne Bussers (Belgium): photo from the Northern Whig, Monday 31 December 1951


Hastings and St Leonards Observer - Saturday 29 December 1951

"Round The Chess Boards - PERSONALITIES OF THE CONGRESS - Taking part in the premier tournament for the second year is 22-year-old L. W. Barden, of Balliol College, Oxford, one of the youngest players ever to have this honour. He was runner-up in the British Boys' Championship at Hastings in 1949 and third in 1946. He is reading history at college and takes his final examinations in six months' time. Then he hopes to teach history the University.

"Oldest player in the congress, and, incidentally, the only one to wear monocle, is Mr. Douglas Fawcett, of London, who is 85. Well known writer on philosophy, his "Zermatt and Oberland Dialogues" are world-famous and a standard work at Harvard University, U.S.A. Mr. Fawcett, also noted as aeronaut and mountaineer, lived for 40 years in Switzerland.

"He has played chess since was 13, but rather neglected the game for some years. Now he is "making a come-back" and is thoroughly enjoying it. This is his third year at the Congress, in which he is competing in the Major “A" Section.

"Three times British woman champion, including two successive years, R. M. Bruce, Plymouth, is playing in the Premier Reserves B, and her husband is taking part in Premier Reserves A. In the same section as Mrs. Bruce is Miss S. Bussers, woman champion of Belgium, who is making her first appearance at the Congress. Another is Mrs. F. Heemskerk, woman champion of Holland, whose daughter of 10 and mother and father are all chess players.

"A notable absentee from the Congress is Miss Tranmer, former British woman champion, who entered but was unable to spare the time to come. Mrs. Bruce, Miss Bussers, Mrs. Heemskerk and Miss Tranmer are all going to Moscow soon for the world’s women’s championship.

"An attractive feature of the Congress this year is the trio of charming Irish girls, Miss Muriel Murphy, Miss Beth Cassidy and Miss Barbara O'Kelly, members of the Clontarf Chess Club, who flew from Dublin to compete. Not only has their enthusiasm in making the journey been admired, but also their pluck, for all three are beginners at the game.

"Miss Murphy and Miss O'Kelly are both only 17, and are learning shorthand with a view to a commercial career, and none of the three has been playing chess for more than a year; Miss Cassidy, in fact, for only seven months.

"Miss Murphy asked an "Observer" reporter: "Don’t you think we are very brave to enter for a tournament like this?" and Miss Cassidy confessed to getting a shock when her first opponent the board told her had been playing chess for 60 years! Miss O’Kelly was champion last year of the Clontarf Ladies’ Swimming Club. All three are keen swimmers and are keeping tuned-up for their chess by taking a daily dip in the White Rock Baths.

"They have all "fallen in love" with Hastings, and think the shops are good and prices reasonable. Chief differences they have so far noticed between England and their own country is the food, and, said Miss Cassidy, nylon stockings, which are so difficult to get here, but plentiful in Ireland.

"Another of the Irish contingent is Mr. E. N. Mulcahy, who is playing in the Premier Reserves B Section. He was runner-up in the Irish 1951 championship and won the brilliancy prize for the best game. He is a B.Sc. of Cork University and is now studying for his Master of Science degree. He edits the university students’ magazine. Mr. Mulcahy came by sea and when he arrived at Hastings had to jump into a taxi and only just got to the Congress in time to start his first game."


Hastings and St Leonards Observer - Saturday 26 January 1952: "BRILLIANCY PRIZES

"The brilliancy prize in the Premier Section has not yet been awarded. The other prizes were won by: J. Penrose, for his game against Dan Mayers, of the U.S.A., in the Premier Reserve Major section; R. Blow, for his game against J. B. Goodman in the Premier Reserve "A" Section; and P. J. Oakley, in his game against E. N. Mulcahy in the Premier Reserve "B" Section.

"Members will be relieved to learn that the three Irish girls who competed in the Congress and flew back to Eire on the same day as the Irish plane disaster, caught an earlier plane, and have sent a letter reporting their safe arrival, after a very rough flying experience." (note - the air crash referred to was that of Aer Lingus C-47 which crashed in Wales on 10 January 1952 killing all three crew and 20 passengers. This was Aer Lingus's first fatal accident: the second fatal Aer Lingus crash was Flight 712, which crashed off County Wexford on 24 March 1968, killing all 61 passengers and crew, including Noel Mulcahy, who played in the 1951/52 Hastings Congress and who is mentioned in the previous paragraph)


File Updated

Date Notes
(some years ago) Games previously uploaded as part of a collection of Hastings games
2 June 2022 Uploaded in the current format, adding games from subsidiary sections, crosstables, reports and results.
3 June 2022 Added two more games from the Premier Reserves Major: (1) F.Sämisch 1-0 J.Fuller; (2) F.Sämisch 0-1 W.Morry, with the German player losing on time when they were barely out of the opening. My thanks to Ulrich Tamm for sending these scores.
4 June 2022 Brian Denman has contributed a game: G.Homan 1-0 R.Thornton (First Class Mornings). Many thanks to Brian.