Mechanics' Institute Chess Room Newsletter

by John Donaldson


Gens Una Sumus!

Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club Newsletter #601
October 2, 2012

After Leko resigned, I went numb. For the first 4 hours of the game I was just worse, and I felt I got more than I deserved. About an hour later it started to sink in that I had defeated a 2730 who was once one game away from the world championship, and boy did it feel good!

—Grandmaster Sam Shankland, September 2012 Chess Life, p 23

1) Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club News
Issue number 600 of the Newsletter reported that Stephen Brandwein retired as the Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club Coordinator on October 1. He will be replaced by FIDE Master Paul Whitehead, who, along with his younger brother Jay, learned his chess at the M.I. in the mid-1970s. While Paul did not focus on the game for as long Jay, he had an outstanding career as a junior, capped by tying for first in the very strong 1978 US Junior Closed with Yasser Seirawan and John Fedorowicz.

FM Paul Whitehead

FM Paul Whitehead    (Photo by Richard Shorman)

This Saturday the Mechanics’ will hold the 12th Annual J.J. Dolan Memorial G/45, named after the Mechanics’ 1898 Champion. Dolan, who served as President of the MICC, is best known for composing the “San Francisco Endgame”.

The nine-round Fall Tuesday Night Marathon starts on October 16th and ends on December 11. All USCF members are welcome to play in this event, which typically attracts 65-75 players ranging in strength from International Master to those rated under 1000.

Thursday Evening Class with Former U. S. Champion Nick de Firmian

Starting Thursday October 18, 2012
8 weeks (October 18, 25, November 1, 8, 15, (no class on November 22), 29, December 6 and 13) 6:30 to 8:30 pm.

This class, limited to a maximum of eight students, is aimed at players below 2000, and is a perfect fit for the Tuesday Night regular who has been stuck for a long time at the same rating. Three-time U.S. Champion de Firmian will offer hands-on instruction, including an in-depth analysis of the students’ games.

The cost for the eight classes is $240 for Mechanics’ Institute members and $270 for non-members.

Book and equipment donations to the Mechanics’ are always welcome. All donations to the Mechanics’ are tax deductible, due to the M.I.’s 501(c)(3) non-profit status. If you have any chess books or equipment that have been lying around unused for some time, consider donating to the Mechanics’. You will not only get a tax write-off, but also the satisfaction of seeing things put to good use.

2) 3rd Imre Konig Memorial Games Annotated by Six-time US Champion Walter Browne - Part Two

English A30
Kraai,Jesse (2514) - Browne,Walter S (2449)
3rd Konig Memorial - San Francisco (5) 2012
1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 b6 3.g3 c5 4.Bg2 Bb7 5.0–0 g6 6.Nc3 Bg7 7.d4 cxd4 8.Qxd4 d6 9.Rd1 Nbd7 10.Be3 Rc8 11.Rac1 0–0 12.Qh4 a6 13.b3 Rc7?!
13...h5 14.Bh3 Re8 15.Ng5 is quite strong.
14.g4! b5?
14...h6! 15.g5 hxg5 16.Nxg5 Bxg2 17.Kxg2 Nh5 18.Nd5 Rc8 19.Ne4 Re8 20.Bd4 is only slightly better for White.
15.g5 Nh5 16.Nd5 Rc8
Alternatives are no better: 16...Bxd5 17.cxd5 Rxc1 18.Rxc1 Qa5 19.Rc2 Ne5 20.Nd4 (20.Nd2 f5 21.gxf6 Bxf6 22.Qh3 Ng7 23.f4 Nf7 24.Be4 leaves White on top) 20...Qe1+ 21.Bf1 with a clear advantage.
17.Nd4 bxc4 18.Nxe7+ Qxe7 19.Bxb7 Rc7 20.Bxa6 c3 21.Nb5 Rc5 22.b4 Re5 23.Nxc3
23.Nxd6 Rxe3 24.fxe3 Qxe3+ 25.Kh1 Nb6 26.Bd3 Nd5 (26...Nf4? 27.Qg3 favors White) 27.Nf5 gxf5 28.Qxh5 Qe6 29.Rf1 Ne3 30.Rf3 and White advantage is indisputable.
23...Rxe3! 24.Nd5
24.fxe3 Qxe3+ 25.Qf2 Qxg5+ (25...Bd4? 26.Qxe3 Bxe3+ 27.Kh1 Bxc1 28.Rxc1 winning) 26.Kh1 Ndf6 27.Qg1 Qh4 with unclear play.
24...Qe4 25.Qxe4 Rxe4 26.f3 Rd4?
Time pressure. 26...Bd4+ 27.Kf1 Rh4 28.e3 Ra8 29.Rxd4 Rxd4 30.exd4 Rxa6 31.Rc8+ Kg7?? (31...Nf8 32.Nc3 Ra7 33.b5 with a clear edge) 32.Nc7 Rc6 33.Ne6+ fxe6 34.Rxc6 winning; 26...Rh4! 27.Bc8! Nb8 28.e3 f6 29.gxf6 Nxf6 unclear.
27.Rxd4 Bxd4+ 28.e3 Ra8 29.Bb7 Rb8 30.Rc7

30... Ne5 31.exd4 Nxf3+ 32.Kf2 Nxg5 33.Rc8+ Rxc8 34.Bxc8 Kf8 35.a4 Ke8 36.a5 Kd8 37.Bb7 Ne6 38.a6 1–0

Sicilian Rossolimo B51
Walter Browne (2449) – Daniel Naroditsky (2483)
3rd Konig Memorial - San Francisco (6), 23.09.2012
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 d6 4.0–0 Bg4 5.d3 e6 6.Bxc6+ bxc6 7.Nbd2 e5 8.h3 Be6 9.Nc4 Nf6 10.b3 h6 11.Re1 Be7 12.c3 Rc8 13.Ne3 0–0 14.Qc2 Nd7
Black might have also considered 14...Qc7 when 15.d4 exd4 16.cxd4 d5 17.exd5 cxd5 18.Nf5 Bd8 19.dxc5 Ne4 20.N5d4 Qxc5 21.Qxc5 Nxc5 22.Ba3 offers equal chances.
15.d4 cxd4?
This gives White better chances. More exact was 15...exd4! 16.cxd4 d5 17.Ba3 Qa5 18.Bb2 Rfe8 19.e5 cxd4 20.Nxd4 c5 21.Nxe6 fxe6 22.Ng4 Nf8 with equality.
16.cxd4 Bf6 17.Bb2 exd4 18.Bxd4
Also possible was 18.Nxd4 d5 19.Rad1 Bxd4 20.Rxd4 c5 21.Rxd5 Bxd5 22.Nxd5 Re8 23.Re3 Rc6 24.Rg3 Rg6 25.Rxg6 fxg6 26.Qc4 Kh7 27.Qa4 with a slight advantage.
18...Bxd4 19.Nxd4 Qg5?! 20.Nef5 Ne5 21.Re3
More precise was 21.Qc3! Rcd8 22.g3 Qf6 23.f4 Ng6 24.Qxc6 with a clear pull.
21...c5 22.Nxe6 fxe6 23.Nxd6 Rcd8
Or 23...Rc6 24.Rg3 Qe7 25.Nc4 and White is on top.
24.Rg3 Qf6?!
Better was 24...Qf4 25.Rd1 Rd7 26.Qd2 Qf6 27.Qe3 when White has the advantage but much work still to do.
Now I’m winning but very low on time.
25...Rd7 26.Qxc5 Rfd8 27.Rd4 Rf8 28.Rd2 Rfd8 29.Kh2 h5 0–1 White lost on time
My last move was not the best. With 29.Kh1 Qf4 30.Rd4 h5 31.Nb5 gives a clear edge but 29.Re3! would have been gin – 29...Qf4 30.g3 Nf3+ 31.Kg2 Qe5 32.Rc2 Rxd6 33.Kxf3 Qxc5 34.Rxc5 Rd2 35.a4 Rf8+ 36.Kg4 Rfxf2 37.Rc6 winning

3) Here and There
FIDE follows the principal of one member one vote, but technically this condition is not true when applied to the United States, since three of its unincorporated territories are also members and receive the right to vote. Those with a knowledge of past Chess Olympiads might remember that Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands have long been members of FIDE, but count yourself very much in the know if you were aware that Guam joined, and for bonus points that one Grandmaster (Ray Robson) was born there.

If you like to combine chess and visit new places you might be be intrigued by the 2013 Guam International Open Chess Tournament, scheduled to be held February 15-21 next year at the Bayview Hotel, Tumon, Guam. The nine-round open Swiss event will be rated with FIDE. The prize fund is set at US$5,000, but it may be increased if there are more than 24 paid entries. The entry fee is $US200; free entry for IM and GM.
Prizes: 1st US$1,000; 2nd US$750; 3rd US$600; 4th US$550; 5th US$450; 6th US$400; 7th US$350; 8th US$300; Best Local US$300; Best Women US$300

Invitation letters will be sent on request for those players requiring US visas to enter Guam.
The opening ceremony will take place in the Kahida Ballroom of the Guam Plaza Hotel at 6 pm on Friday, February 15, 2013. The arbiter is Brian Zones of Australia.

For more information contact the tournament organizer, Leon R. Ryan, who is President of Guam Echecs (Island Chess):

P.O. Box 3855
Hagatna, Guam 96932
Phones: (671) 475-8587 (work)
(671) 637-4203 (home)
(671) 788-1631 (mobile)

11-year old Ashritha Eswaran, rated 1861, tied for 1st (!) with International Master Ricardo De Guzman at the NorCal House of Chess Summer Championship in Fremont, held September 15-16. Ashritha played up (1900 and above) and beat players rated 2047, 2307, 2155 and drew a 1992. All of them are higher-rated than she. She gained 99 rating points, to move up to 1960. She is now the number-three-rated girl in the United States under age 13, and is very close to being rated in the top 50 women in the country.

The United States has two players in the top 11 in the recently-released FIDE October ratings.

Top 10:
1. Carlsen - 2843
2. Aronian - 2821
3. Kramnik - 2795
4. Radjabov - 2792
5. Nakamura - 2786
6. Karjakin - 2780
7. Anand - 2780
8. Caruana - 2772
9. Ivanchuk - 2771
10. Morozevich – 2758
11. Kamsky - 2755

4) Western States Open
One of the major annual tournaments for Bay Area chess players is right around the corner. No other major American event has such low hotel rates (room cost $29 on Sunday and Thursday and $59 Friday and Saturday) and a casino that subsidies the prize fund, ensuring a very high prize fund to entry fee ratio.

A Heritage Event!
An American Classic!
Oct. 19-21  30th Annual Sands Regency Reno-Western States Open  GPP: 150 Enhanced

6SS. 40/2, 20/1, G/ 1/2. Sands Regency Hotel/Casino, 345 N. Arlington Ave., Reno, NV 89501. 1-800-648-3553 or (775) 348-2200. $$26,000 b/275, Gtd. $$16,750-$2000-1500-1000-800-600-500-400-300-200-200 in Open Section plus 1/2 of all other prizes. 6 Sections: OPEN: EF: GMs & IMs free (enter by 10/1 or pay late fee), Masters $147, (2199/below)-$175. $$ Prizes 1-10 listed above, (2399-below) $1000, (2299-below) $1000. If a tie for 1st overall then 2 (G/10) playoff for $100 from prize fund. (Note: GM/IM w/free entry not eligible for class prizes 2399 and below; may elect to pay entry fee and become eligible). EXPERT: (2000-2199) EF: $146. $$1,600-800-500-300-200. “A” Sec. (1800-1999) EF: $145, $$1,500-800-500-300-200. “B” Sec. (1600-1799). EF: $144, $$1,400-700-500-300-200. “C” Sec. (1400-1599). EF: $143, $$1,200-600-500-300-200. “D”/under Sec. (1399/below). EF: $142, $$800-500-400-300-200, (under 1200) - $300. (Unrated Players) EF: Free + must join USCF or increase membership for 1 additional year thru this tournament ($46 adults, $25 juniors). Prizes: Top unrated wins 1 yr. USCF membership plus trophy. Note: Unrated will be put in “D” Sect. unless requests to play up. Seniors (65+) additional prizes $$200; (Seniors not eligible: provisionally rated, unrated, masters); Club Championship $$800-400 decided by total score of 10 (and only 10) players from one club or area (not eligible – GMs, IMs, or unrated). Trophies to Top 3 (A-D Sections). ALL: EF $11 more if postmarked after 10/1 and $22 more if postmarked after 10/14 or at site. Do not mail after 10/14 or phone or email after 10/18. $20 off EF to Srs (65+). Players may play up. Unrated players not eligible for cash prizes except Open 1-10. Provisionally rated players may win up to 50% of 1st place money except open Section 1-10. CCA ratings may be used. Note pairings not changed for color alternation unless 3 in a row or a plus 3 and if the unlikely situation occurs 3 colors in a row may be assigned. Reg.: (10/18) 5-8 pm, (10/19) 9:00-10 am. Rds.: 12-7, 10-6, 9:30-4:30. Byes available any round, if requested before 1st round (Open Section – 2 byes max.). SIDE EVENTS: Wed. (10/17) 7pm Clock Simul([40/2, G/1) (Including an analysis of YOUR game. GM Sergey Kudrin $30 (A great value!). Thurs (10/18) 5-7:30 pm FREE lecture by IM John Donaldson -Free, 7:30 Simul GM TBA (only $15!), 7:30 Blitz (5 min) Tourney ($20-80% to prize fund). Sat 10/20 (3-4:30pm) IM John Donaldson Clinic (Game/Position Analysis) – Free. ENT: Make checks payable and send to: SANDS REGENCY (address above). HR: Room rates are Sunday - Thursday - $29.00 and Friday & Saturday - $59.00 Reservation code is: USCHESS1017. + 13.5% tax. Reserve by 10/5/12 to guarantee room rates.) INFO: Jerry Weikel, (775) 747 1405, or website: (also go here to verify entry). FIDE. W. Chess Magnet School JGP.


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