Round 3: The First Evening Session
Monday’s second playing session brought the first surprise of the week, as the representatives of Cyprus battled to an impressive 2-2 draw in their third round match against Andorra.
The tone for this unexpected result was set by FM Paris Klerides, the Cypriot Captain, who overcame a 324 point difference in ELO rating to hold Andorra’s GM Oscar de la Riva Aguado to a draw on the top board, an achievement made all the more impressive because he had the black pieces.
Doros Kassinopoullos, on Board 3, was able to replicate his captain’s feat – also with black – and although Vassilis Aristotelous was unable to get anything from his Board 2 game against Raul Garcia Paolicchi, Arsenios Hadjikryiakou bounced back from his heartbreaking loss on time in the morning session, beating Joan Fernandez Lopez and securing the tied match for Cyprus.
Elsewhere in Round 3, Jersey fought out a tightly contested drawn match with Liechtenstein, while Luxembourg vs Malta, Monaco vs San Marino and The Faroe Islands vs Guernsey all went with form, the first-named team in each case taking the match by 3 wins to 1.
Nevertheless, San Marino’s Enrico Grassi – for whom this was the second win of the day – Clarence Psaila of Malta and Guernsey’s Toby Brookfield, could all enjoy a better night’s sleep on Monday, having taken the scalp of an opponent from one of the stronger nations.
Tuesday will see a return to the single round format, with an afternoon start. This will surely come as a relief to many of the players, ahead of the last of the energy-sapping double round days on Wednesday.