Adams v Wheeler 0-1 1985

Featured Games by Hampshire players

The first time I had played Mickey Adams was in the Devon v Cornwall match a year earlier, when we had drawn quickly on board 3. In 1985 I was not surprised to see Adams on top board for Cornwall, but I was disturbed that Devon had several absentees, and I was therefore on board 1 and playing Adams again.

The venue was a cold dark school-room in Liskeard, on a wet Saturday afternoon. Adams was probably expecting an interesting game, but he got me and a boring Pirc defence instead. Several of the other games became very violent, and there was a real chance that Cornwall would beat Devon for the first time in their chess history.

Adams took a great interest in all this, which probably led to his oversight on move 20. Devon just scraped home 9-7 in this match. However, Cornwall won in the following year, achieving their historic first victory, and Adams beat Wheeler on board 1. But it wasn't me - it was my brother. I was back on board 4 where I belonged. I haven't played Adams since 1985, and with a bit of luck I should be able to keep it that way.

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