BCN sends Happy birthday wishes to Peter Griffiths
Peter Charles Griffiths was born on Thursday, August 15th, in 1946 in Birmingham, Warwickshire. His mother’s maiden name was Ward.
Peter was a strong player active from the 1960s until 1989. He played in the British Championships more than once and was a professional coach and writer. He wrote the column “Practical Chess Endings” which appeared in the British Chess Magazine. The column commenced in the December 1972 issue and columns became less frequent until around 1991.
He wrote Exploring the Endgame
and co-authored Secrets of Grandmaster Play with John Nunn.
BCN wishes IM John Pigott all the best on his birthday (15-viii-1957)
John Christopher Pigott was born in Croydon, Surrey and his mother’s maiden name was Fletcher.
In 1975 John was selected by the BCF junior selectors and travelled with Jonathan Speelman and Peter J Lee (Hampshire) to the 8th Biel International Open in Switzerland. Leonard Barden wrote in the October 1975 British Chess Magazine (the cover was of Geller and Smyslov) :
“17-year-old John Pigott’s 8.5/11 included wins against IM Kluger, IM Messing and the 1975 Budapest Champion Rajna and earned him 2,000 Swiss francs in prize money. The three English juniors who competed, Pigott, Speelman and Lee were chosen by the BCF junior selectors and travelled to Switzerland with the help of grant from the Slater Foundation and the London Chess Club.”
John represented England at the 1975 Anglo-Dutch match (25th and 26th of October) scoring 0.5/2 versus Paul van der Sterren. The game scores appear to either have been lost on not recorded.
In 1976 John scored 4.5/5 in the Surrey Open and shared the 3rd, 4th and 5th prize.
John became a FIDE Master in 1984 and an International Master in 2017, a gap of some 33 years!
John plays for Little Heath, 4NCL Barbican, Hon Members LCCL and King’s Head chess clubs.
After a sojourn from chess John returned to the ECF grading list in January 2015 with a grading of 269F attracting some attention.
His highest FIDE rating was 2419 in February 2018 at the age of 61.
With the white pieces John plays the Queen’s Gambit and the Giuoco Piano.
As the second player John enjoys the Sicilian Najdorf and the Nimzo Indian Defence.
BCN wishes Happy Birthday to FM Andrew Smith (15-viii-1959)
Andrew Philip Smith became a FIDE Master in 1994 and is registered with the Irish Chess Union.
His highest FIDE rating was 2310 in July 1994 at the age of 35.
He plays for Bourne End Chess Club in the Buckinghamshire League and in the Berkshire League.
Andrew also plays for 4NCL Barnet Knights (he has played for Atticus), Buckinghamshire CCA in the Chiltern League and Hon Members LCCL.
Andrew started his chess aged 6 when his Mother taught him and he joined Lewisham Chess Club aged 13 and then Slough Chess Club (Thames Valley League and 4NCL) in 1988.
He has won the Berks & Bucks Congress in 2018 and 2016 (joint) and he became Berkshire Individual Champion as a direct consequence winning the Cadogan Cup.
With the white pieces Andrew is (almost) exclusively a 1.e4 player favouring the Centre Game
and as the second player Andrew plays the Philidor Defence and the Benoni.
He is known to favour “enterprising” variations such as the Mason Variation of the Philidor, the Haldane Attack versus the French and other such exotica.
In 2021 Andrew self-published “Off the Board Chess, The Best Games and Chess Experiences of Andrew Smith (FM)” which has received popular acclaim.
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