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Tournament: 129th Varsity Match • Venue: RAC Club, Pall Mall, London • Date: 5 March 2011
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John Saunders reports: The 129th Varsity Chess Match between Oxford University and Cambridge University was held at the RAC Club, Pall Mall, London on 5 March 2011. The match sponsor was Henry Mutkin and match arbiter was David Sedgwick.

Bd Oxford University Rating Nat 4½-3½ Cambridge University Rating Nat
1b Amon Simutowe (Green Templeton) 2481g ZAM ½-½ Gabor Pinter (Queens') 2363m HUN
2w David Zakarian (St Antony's) 2362 ARM 1-0 Peter Roberson (Churchill) 2274 ENG
3b Ravindran Shanmugam (Balliol) 2293f SIN 1-0 Mitesh Shridhar (Churchill) 2116 USA
4w Athanasios Tsanas (St Cross) 2264 GRE ½-½ Chris. Graw (Sidney Sussex) 2257 GER
5b Robbie Coleman (Wolfson) 2042 SCO 1-0 Sven Quist (Homerton) 2150c GER
6w Steffen Schaper (Exeter) 2000e GER ½-½ Mikhail Tyomkyn (Corpus) 2106 GER
7b Murray David (Brasenose) 2024e ENG 0-1 Richard Lee (Christ's) 2000e ENG
8w Susan Yu (Linacre) 1680 ENG 0-1 Izabella Khazagerova (Fitzwilliam) 2080 RUS
  Av. Rating 2143     4½-3½ Av. Rating 2168    

Captains were Yangshi Yu (Oxford) and Alexander James Gordon-Brown (Cambridge). The match commenced at 12.30pm, with the time control set at 40 moves in 2 hours, followed by one hour for all remaining moves.

First result at 4.20pm - all the games involved time scrambles to some degree. Just around the four-hour mark, Oxford went into a 2½-½ lead and not long thereafter completed their victory 4½-1½. Cambridge won the final two games, on board seven and eight, to narrow the gap but in truth it might have been a more comfortable win for Oxford had they taken all their opportunities.

The Bob Wade brilliancy prize went to the Armenian player David Zakarian, while the best game prize went to the draw between Athanasios Tsanas and Christopher Graw on board four.

The overall scores in the series (which started in 1873) were Cambridge 56 wins, Oxford 53 wins and 20 drawn matches.

2011 Cambridge Chess Team
2011 Cambridge Varsity Team

2011 Oxford Chess Team
2011 Oxford Varsity Team

© 2011 John Saunders, all photos and text - not to be used without permission