Mechanics' Institute Chess Room Newsletter

by John Donaldson

Gens Una Sumus!

Newsletter #459, 9/9/2009
Another very crucial aspect is the ability to develop an individualistic approach for every pupil. Group work is nice, but trainers need to devote some specific time to each pupil. This demands more energy, but individual training is more useful for each student. Trainers are generally lazy about it, analyzing the games of the students with just the computer. This is the greatest sin because the pupil might not be able to improve without his hands making the moves. There is a similar thing in tennis, where if you develop a hand, you have a greater tendency to make the right move, as if intuitively.

Grandmaster Adrian Mikhalchishin
1) Mechanics Institute Chess Club News
2) Christiansen wins US Senior Open
3) China leads in Womens World Team Championship
4) Here and There

1) Mechanics Institute Chess Club News
Last night the Mechanics' entry in the US Chess League turned in one of its best ever results defeating the defending two-time league champions the Dallas Destiny.

The match started strangely with two games ending in less than hour. Chess is a fascinating game but also a cruel one - witness two very strong players losing quickly in known ways.

What was once a four game match was now down to two with the score knotted. The Mechanics' struck first blood with 12-year-old Master Yian Liou defeating his Dallas rival, 14-year-old Adarsh Jayikumar in what was unbeknownst to both players a theoretical duel. The two youngsters followed theory for over twenty moves until White went wrong with the decentralizing moves 24.Nb3?! and 25.Qb6?. The latter was strongly met by 25...Ne6 when Adarsh was left with no reasonable moves.

Dallas third board Salvjius Bercys was tasked with equalizing the match against the US Chess League's all time best percentage scorer (15 from 18 before last night) IM soon to be GM Sam Shankland. The latter is gifted with a preponderance of fast twitch muscle fiber and seems to feel right at home with the League's time control. It's not uncommon for Sam to be ahead of his opponent by 20-30 minutes when the game reaches its critical phase and that is exactly what happened last night. Bercys was down to three minutes by move 30. He kept his head above water for a longtime before finally blundering with 43...Bf5??

This was a good win against a strong team but there is no time to celebrate. Next week we meet our friends and rivals from Miami who are off to a great start this season and lead the division.
San Francisco 3 Dallas 1
1. GM Josh Friedel (SF) vs IM Marko Zivanic (DAL) 1-0
2. IM Daniel Ludwig (DAL) vs GM Jesse Kraai (SF) 1-0
3. IM Sam Shankland (SF) vs IM Salvijus Bercys (DAL) 1-0
4. Adarsh Jayakumar (DAL) vs NM Yian Liou (SF) 0-1
Friedel,Josh (2612) - Zivanic,Marko (2551) [B48]
USCL San Francisco vs Dallas 2009
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nc6 5.Nc3 Qc7 6.Be3 a6 7.Bd3 Nf6 8.0-0 h5 Zivancic also plays 8...Bd6 which looks safer. 9.h3 Bd6 Zivancic plays just as he did against Patrick Wolff in one of one of the regular season matches between San Francisco and Dallas. 10.f4 Patrick tried 10.Re1 with the idea of a4 and Nd5. The text looks stronger. 10...Nxd4 Black could have tried to bail out of what follows by 10...Bc5. Then White might try 11.Be2 or 11.Nf5 along the lines of 8...Bd6 9.f4 Bc5 10.Nf5. The question is who is favored by the inclusion of h3 and ...h5 in this position? This is probably the test of 10.f4 and possibly the way to rehabilitate 8...h5. 11.e5 Bc5 11...Bxe5 12.fxe5 Qxe5 13.Qd2 gives White tremendous compensation for the pawn. 12.exf6 Nxc2 GM Miezis once got away with 12...Nf5 but 13.Bxc5+ Qxc5+ 14.Rf2! gxf6 15.Bxf5 Qxf5 16.Qd6, as in Roa-Morales, Madrid 2002, can only be described as crushing. After the game Josh pointed out to us that White is threatening Nc3-a4-b6 and even 16...a5 doesn't stop it - 17.Na4 Qb5 18.Nb6 Ra6 19.Nxc8!. 13.fxg7 Bxe3+ 14.Kh1 Rg8 15.Bxc2 Rxg7 16.Qxh5 Bd4 17.Qh8+ White could also play 17. Nd5 but the text is more precise. Neither player was aware of it but they are following a previously played game and continue to do so almost until the very end. Ke7 18.Nd5+ exd5 19.Rfe1+ Kd6 20.Qf8+ Kc6 21.Ba4+ b5 22.Rac1+ Kb6 23.Rxc7 Kxc7 24.Rc1+ Kb7 24...Kb6 25.Qd8+ 1-0, Haker-Budisin, Germany 1995. 25.Bb3 Ka7 26.Rxc8 1-0
Ludwig,Daniel (2543) - Kraai,Jesse (2552) [C07]
USCL San Francisco vs Dallas 2009
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nd2 c5 4.exd5 Qxd5 5.Ngf3 cxd4 6.Bc4 Qd6 7.0-0 Nc6 8.Nb3 Nf6 9.Nbxd4 Nxd4 10.Nxd4 Bd7 11.b3 Be7 12.a4 a6 13.Re1 Qc7 14.Qf3 0-0 15.Nf5 Bc6?? 15...Bd8 as in Tiviakov-Anderson, Haninge 1992. Maybe Ludvig had found a way for 16.Nxg7 to work in his preparations but it doesn't look very clear. 16.Qg3! Winning on the spot. 16...Qxg3 17.Nxe7+ Kh8 18.hxg3 Be4 19.Bb2 1-0
Shankland,Sam (2564) - Bercys,Salvijus (2503) [A84]
USCL San Francisco vs Dallas 2009
1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 c6 4.e3 f5 5.Bd3 Nf6 6.0-0 Bd6 7.b3 Qe7 8.Bb2 0-0 9.Qc1 Ne4 10.Ba3 Nd7 11.Bxd6 Qxd6 12.Nc3 b6 13.cxd5 exd5 14.Ne2 Bb7 15.Qb2 Rae8 16.Rac1 Rf6 17.Rc2 Rh6 18.Ng3 Qf6 19.Qa3 a6 20.Rfc1 g5 21.Nd2 Nxg3 22.hxg3 g4 23.Nf1 Rh5 24.f4 gxf3 25.gxf3 Rg5 26.Rg2 Kh8 27.Rcc2 c5 28.Qb2 c4 29.Be2 b5 30.f4 Rg7 31.Bf3 Nf8 32.Kh1 Ba8 33.Rh2 Rc8 34.Qc1 a5 35.Rh5 Ra7 36.Qb1 c3 37.Rch2 Rf7 38.Bd1 Bc6 39.Bc2 Bd7 40.g4 Qe7 41.gxf5 Rf6 42.Qe1 Qf7 43.Qh4 Bxf5?? Black had to leave the pawn on f5 but overlooks a neat tactic seriously short of time. Note that 43...Rxf5 would not by met by 44.Bxf5 but by the much stronger 44.Rh6! planning 45.Ng3. 44.Rxf5 Rxf5 45.Qg4! Rxf4 46.Qxf4 Qxf4 47.exf4 Re8 48.Rh3 Re1 49.Kg1 b4 50.f5 Kg7 51.Re3 Ra1 52.Re5 Rxa2 53.Ne3 Rb2 54.Re7+ Kf6 55.Ra7 Kg5 56.Rxa5 Nd7 57.Rxd5 Nf6 58.Re5 Kf4 59.Ng2+ Kg4 60.Ne1 h5 61.d5 h4 62.d6 h3 63.Re6 Kg5 64.Kh2 1-0
Jayakumar,Ardash (2173) - Liou,Yian (2149) [A87]
USCL San Francisco vs Dallas 2009
1.d4 f5 2.c4 Nf6 3.g3 g6 4.Bg2 Bg7 5.Nc3 d6 6.Nf3 0-0 7.0-0 Qe8 8.d5 Na6 9.Rb1 Bd7 10.b4 c6 11.dxc6 Bxc6 Kindermann, in his authoritative book on the Leningrad, prefers the more dynamic but riskier 11...bxc6. 12.Qb3 This is considered to be White's best here in preference to 12.b5 or the less commonly seen 12.c5. 12...Ne4 13.Bb2 Nxc3 It's possible that 13...Bxc3 is more precise as the text gives White an extra option. 14.Bxc3 Bxc3 15.Qxc3 15.c5+ !? e6 16. Qxc3 dxc5 17.b5 lead to very sharp play in Kramnik-Malaniuk, Moscow (ol) 1994. 15...Rc8 16.Qd4 As recommended by Khalifman in his Opening for White according to Kramnik series. 16...Be4 17.Nd2(!) Exclamation mark by Khalifman. 17...Bxg2 17...Bxb1 is met by 18.Bxb7! 18.Kxg2 Qc6+ 19.Kg1 Nc7 20.Qxa7 Ra8 21.Qe3 Rxa2 So far the players have been following M. Gurevich - Rebers, Netherlands 2000, where 22.Rfd1 preparing c4-c5 was played. 22.Ra1 Rfa8 23.Rxa2 Rxa2 24.Nb3?! It only takes two mistakes for White to lose this game. 24...Qe4! 25.Qb6 ? This is the fatal error taking the Queen away from the center. 25...Ne6! The game is over. 26.Nc1 Rc2 27.Qb5 Nd4 28.Qd5+ Qxd5 29.cxd5 Rxc1 0-1
WESTERN DIVISION W L Game Points Opps Avg Rating Opps Record
Miami 2.0 0.0 6.0/8 (75%) 2387 0.0-2.0 (0%)
Arizona 1.5 0.5 5.5/8 (69%) 2374 1.0-1.0 (50%)
San Francisco 1.5 0.5 5.0/8 (63%) 2436 0.5-1.5 (25%)
Tennessee 1.5 0.5 4.5/8 (56%) 2445 1.0-1.0 (50%)
Seattle 1.0 1.0 4.0/8 (50%) 2422 1.0-1.0 (50%)
Dallas 0.0 2.0 2.0/8 (25%) 2428 1.5-0.5 (75%)
Chicago 0.0 2.0 1.5/8 (19%) 2400 1.5-0.5 (75%)

2009 MVP Standings Pts.
1. GM Julio Becerra (MIA) 9.0
2. GM Eugene Perelshteyn (BOS) 7.0
3. FM Bruci Lopez (MIA) 7.0
4. FM Robby Adamson (ARZ) 6.0
5. GM Joel Benjamin (NJ) 5.0
6. FM Andrei Zaremba (QNS) 5.0
7. GM Larry Christiansen (BOS) 5.0
8. GM Alex Shabalov (TEN) 5.0
9. IM Dean Ippolito (NJ) 4.0
10. NM Yian Liou (SF) 4.0

NM Russell Wong has recovered from a first round draw to reel off five consecutive wins and leads the Max Wilkerson Memorial Tuesday Night Marathon. Top seed NM Andy Lee is half a point back of Wong with 5 points with three rounds to go.

Mechanics' member GM Vinay Bhat may remember the recently concluded Category 15 ( 2615 average) Montreal International as three events in one. The lowest rated in the field at 2473 Vinay, started with one point from his first four games but then scored four from five in the middle stretch before losing his last to finish on 5 points but with a performance rating of 2619 and the scalps of Sergei Tiviakov and former US Champion Yury Shulman.

Final standings:
1. GM Naiditsch (GER, 2697) - 7½ /11
2. GM Bacrot (FRA, 2721) - 7
3. GM Maze (FRA, 2546) - 6½,
4-5. GMs Kovalyov (ARG, 2572) and Tiviakov (NED, 2697) - 6
6. GM Bluvshtein (CAN, 2558) - 5½
7-9. GMs Akobian (USA, 2626), Bhat (USA, 2473) and Onischuk (USA, 2699) - 5
10-11. GMs Shulman (USA, 2626) and Moiseenko (UKR, 2682) - 4½
12 IM Roussel-Roozmon (CAN, 2487) - 3½
George Sanguinetti reports: Wednesday Night Blitz Winners for the Week of 09/02/2009 are: 1st-2nd : Romy Fuentes and Jules Jelinek 8/ 12 3rd : Yefim Bukh 7.5

The Ken Whyld Chess Association will hold its annual meeting at the Mechanics' Institute from October 9 to 11. Among the featured speakers will be GM Ian Rogers. More on this event in future Newsletters.
2) Christiansen wins US Senior Open
Native Californian Larry Christiansen won the 2009 US Senior Open with 5.5 from 6, drawing only with fellow GM Larry Kaufman. Kaufman, who yielded one other draw to MI member IM Walter Shipman, was second with 5. Christiansen won a spot in the 2010 US Championship for his victory while Kaufman, who defeated GM Boris Gulko, will be the official US representative in the 2010 World Senior. Frank and Jim Berry put on a true chess festival hosting several other concurrent events.
Bradford,J - Christiansen,L [A81]
Senior Open (5),
1.Nf3 f5 2.g3 Nf6 3.Bg2 d6 4.d4 e6 5.0–0 Be7 6.b3 0–0 7.Bb2 a5 8.a4 Na6 9.Nbd2 c6 10.Ne1 Bd7 11.e3 Be8 12.Nd3 Bh5 13.f3 Nd5 14.Re1 Bg5 15.Nf4 Bf7 16.Nc4 Nxf4 17.exf4 Be7 18.Bf1 Nb4 19.Qd2 Qc7 20.Ne3 Bf6 21.c3 Nd5 22.Bd3 Nxe3 23.Qxe3 Rfe8 24.c4 c5 25.Rad1 Rad8 26.Qf2 cxd4 27.Bxd4 Bxd4 28.Qxd4 e5 29.Qf2 g6 30.fxe5 dxe5 31.Bc2 b6 32.Qe3 Kg7 33.Kf2 f4 34.Qc3 Qc5+ 35.Kf1 Rd4 36.gxf4 Rxf4 37.Re4 Rf5 38.Qe3 Qe7 39.Kg2 Qf6 40.Re1 Rd8 41.Re2 h5 42.Re1 Rd4 43.Rd1 Rxd1 44.Bxd1 Be8 45.c5 Bc6 46.Rc4 b5 47.axb5 Bxb5 48.Re4 Bc6 49.Rc4 Bd5 50.Ra4 e4 51.Qd4 exf3+ 52.Kf2 Re5 53.Qf4 Qe7 54.Qd4 Kh7 55.Qd2 0–1
3) China leads in Womens World Team Championship
Host China leads the Womens World Team Championship with 11 (from a possible) 16 points with one round to play and faces the last place team, Vietnam in the final match. Four teams (Russia, Ukraine, Poland and Armenia) are one point back. The US team, captained by Michael Khodarkovsky and coached by GM Gregory Kaidanov, is performing above rating expectation and while the team has only 6 match points it is only minus one (15.5-16.5) on game points showing it has been quite competitive. Their surprise weapon this event has been the play of 18 year old newcomer Alisa Melekhina (2220 FIDE) who has scored 3.5 from 5 for a performance of 2500. The performance of the US Women the past five years (2nd in the 2004 Chess Olympiad, 4th in 2006 and 3rd in 2008) is light years away from the results of the 1970s and 80s.

The improved performance can be attributed to several factors. While it is certainly true the immigration of several players has certainly helped (the latest arrival is WGM Sabine-Francesa Foisor) the US is now starting to produce strong players of its own (Melikhina and newly minted master and fellow teen Abby Marshall are two examples). The financial support of the Kasparov Chess Foundation both through coaching (2003-2004) and funding Olympiad teams (2004-2008) and money provided by the USCF both for Olympiads and the World Team this year have been critical. Unfortunately the support of the latter is in jeopardy. Executive Director Bill Hall reported to the USCF membership this August that the Federation spent over $400,000 in legal fees, primarily dealing with ongoing litigation with former Executive Board Members Susan Polgar and Paul Truong. The Federation is anticipating $500,000 in additional legal expenses should the litigation with Polgar and Truong see a court room. All of this places the participation of the US entry to the World Team Championship, scheduled for January in Turkey, in jeopardy. Executive Director Hall is currently looking for potential sponsors who can reach him at
4) Here and There
IM Ricardo DeGuzman won the Labor Day weekend tournament at the Holiday Inn on Van Ness in San Francisco with a 6-0 score. NM Steven Ziek was second at 4.5 followed by NMs Andy Lee and Jimmy Heiserman at 4. 154 players competed in the multi section event organized and directed by Richard Koepcke and John McCumiskey.

Robert Hess had a successful trip to Europe last month. He tied for fifth in Zurich (seed 28) scoring 6.5 from 9 including 1.5 from 4 versus 2650 plus GMs. Just before this event he had 5.5 from 9 in a Swiss in Kavala, Greece. He ran out of steam at the end losing his last two games but defeated GM Humpy (2623) earlier in the event.

FM Erik Kislik (2334), formerly of San Jose but now residing in Budapest, is off to a good start in the GM section (average 2435) of the September First Saturday event with 3 from 5.


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