Mechanics' Institute Chess Room Newsletter

by John Donaldson


 
Gens Una Sumus!

Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club News #677
August 8, 2014

Lasker had a very casual approach to the openings and wasn’t much interested in theory so long as he could reach a playable middlegame position. His preference for straightforward opening systems fitted in well with his style, but sometimes casual turned into careless and he occasionally played the opening so badly that he was left with a dead lost position as early as move ten.

—John Nunn, John Nunn’s Chess Course I, page 207.

1) Mechanics’ Chess Club News

The Jay Whitehead Memorial Tuesday Night Marathon began on Tuesday August 5 and runs nine rounds. It is still not too late to play in this USCF- and FIDE-rated event. Half-point byes are available for round one for this tournament, which honors the memory of one of the strongest players San Francisco has ever produced, the late Jay Whitehead.


From round 1 of the Whitehead Tuesday Night Marathon:
White to move (Walder–Oyuntseren after 19...Rd7)White to move (Walder–Oyuntseren after 25...h5)
For the solutions, see the game scores for round 1.

Teenage Expert Jack Zhu won the 14th Vladimir Pafnutieff Memorial G/45 held last Sunday, scoring 4½ from 5. Tying for second at 4-1 in the 32-player field were Julian Lin, Hans Niemann, Steven Svoboda and Michael Wang.


Edward Song (Michigan) took clear first at the US Cadet Championships held July 19-23 in Rockville, Maryland with a 6½/9 score. Mechanics’ US Chess League team member FIDE Master Cameron Wheeler of Cupertino and Christopher Gu tied for second with 6/9.


Mechanics’ Grandmaster-in-Residence Nick de Firmian has had a busy summer.

Nick doesn’t play a lot these days, but he showed he can still move the pieces quite well as he tied for fourth in the Canadian Open, held in Montreal from July 19 to 26.

Final standings:

1-3. GMs Tiviakov (NED, 2656), Van Kampen (NED, 2636) and Ghaem Maghami (IRI, 2586) – 6½/9
4-6. GMs Kovalyov (CAN, 2636), Moradiabadi (IRI, 2593) and De Firmian (2509) – 6, etc.

Nick is now at the Chess Olympiad in Tromso, Norway, where he is serving as captain of the Bermuda team. This September he will travel to South Africa, where he will coach top American talents in the World Youth Championships.


The Berlin Wall has a reputation for being tough to breach, but 18-year-old Daniel Naroditsky of Foster City shows how it can be done against a fellow Grandmaster. Daniel will be 2587 on the August FIDE rating list.

Ruy Lopez C67
Daniel Naroditsky (2559)–Karen H. Grigoryan (2577)
Montcada 2014

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.O-O Nxe4 5.d4 Nd6 6.Bxc6 dxc6 7.dxe5 Nf5 8.Qxd8+ Kxd8 9.Rd1+ Ke8 10.Nc3 h6 11.h3 Bd7 12.Bf4 Rc8 13.Ne4 b6 14.Re1 c5 15.g4 Ne7 16.Nf6+ gxf6 17.exf6 Be6 18.fxe7 Bxe7 19.Ne5 Bf6 20.Rad1 a6 21.b3 Rh7 22.Bg3 Rd8 23.Nd3 c4 24.bxc4 Bc3 25.Re4 c5 26.Rb1 Rd4 27.Re2 Ba5 28.Bc7 h5 29.g5 Rd7 30.Bxb6 Bxb6 31.Rxb6 Kf8 32.g6 Rh8 33.Ne5 Rd1+ 34.Kh2 Kg7 35.gxf7 Bxf7 36.Rb7 Rf8 37.Re3 1-0


Congratulations to Mechanics’ US Chess League player Vignesh Panchanatham, who had an outstanding result in the Pacific Southwest Open over the July 4th weekend. The South Bay youngster’s 4-2 included a win over IM Dionisio Aldama and draws with GM Enrico Sevillano and IM Roman Yankovsky. Sevillano won the 46-player open section with a 5-1 score. Bay Area IM Ricardo DeGuzman was among those at 4½. Randy Hough directed, and Ankit Gupta organized the event for Metropolitan Chess.


Sam Shankland had a strong second half in the 47th Biel Open, and finished in a tie for second at 7½ from 11, a point behind the winner, Baskaran Adhiban of India, who had a monster result, scoring 8½. Shankland will make his Olympiad debut for the U.S. team in Tromso, Norway, this August.

2) 2014 US Chess League

The Mechanics’ schedule in the USCL has been announced:

1 8/26 B Rio Grande Ospreys
2 9/2 W Seattle Sluggers
3 9/9 W New England Nor'easters
4 9/16 B Dallas Destiny
5 9/24 W Miami Sharks
6 9/30 W Arizona Scorpions
7 10/8 B Connecticut Dreadnoughts
8 10/15 W Dallas Destiny
9 10/21 B New York Knights
10 10/29 B Los Angeles Vibe

The Mechanics’ were one of the founding teams in the USCL, and will be playing their tenth season this fall. One of the more successful teams in the league, the M.I. has an overall score of 53½–36½.

2013: 6½–3½, 1st place in the Pacific Division. Lost 2-1 in Semifinals to Miami.
2012: 4–6, 5th place in the Western Division. Failed to qualify for the playoffs.
2011: 5½–4½, 3rd place in the Western Division. Lost 2-1 in Quarterfinals to Los Angeles.
2010: 4–6, 7th place in the Western Division. Failed to qualify for the playoffs.
2009: 6½–3½, 2nd place in the Western Division. Lost 2-1 in Semifinals to Miami.
2008: 6½–3½, 2nd place in the Western Division. Lost 2-1 in Quarterfinals to Dallas.
2007: 6–4, 2nd place in the Western Division. Lost 2-1 in Wildcard Round to Miami.
2006: 8½–1½, 1st place in the Western Division. Won Championship against New York in tiebreaker.
2005: 6–4, 1st place in the Western Division. Lost 2-1 in Semfinals to Miami.

3) 11-year-old Awonder Liang makes his first IM norm, by Will Liang

We are glad to report to you that Awonder has made his first IM norm in the 2nd DC International chess tournament just concluded here in Crystal City, Virginia in the Washington DC area, according to the main TD of the event, Steve Immitt. Awonder scored 6 points out of a possible 9. His nine opponents were from eight different countries across four continents, including one GM, five IMs, one FIDE master with IM strength (USCF 2521 FIDE 2411). Awonder’s estimated performance ratings are USCF 2597, FIDE 2482 for the event. His IM norm is still pending with FIDE.

People in the tournament have told us that Awonder has created another piece of chess history for our country by becoming the youngest ever to earn an IM norm at the age of 11 years, 2 months, and 21 days. The previous record on this was held by the brilliant and institutionally well-supported Samuel Sevian. Sevian earned his first IM norm on June 10, 2012 at the age of 11 years, 5 months and 15 days.



 

You can browse through our archived newsletters using the "next" and "previous buttons".

Alternatively, you can select a newsletter to read from this list:

Want to save this newsletter for reading at a later time? Click here to learn how.