Mechanics' Institute Chess Room Newsletter

by John Donaldson

Gens Una Sumus!

Mechanic’ Institute Chess Club Newsletter #682
September 12, 2014

The first-time chess player who makes the right move based on his feeling for a certain piece is probably experiencing luck, not intuition. But when a knowledgeable player finds the best move simply present in his mind without combing through hundreds of variations, that’s the power of intuition.

—Garry Kasparov, in How Life Imitates Chess, 2008

1) Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club News

FIDE Master Andy Lee defeated newly minted National Master Uyanga Byambaa in round six to reclaim the lead in the Jay Whitehead Memorial Tuesday Night Marathon. Lee has 5½ from 6 (he took a half-point bye in round five) and is trailed by half a point by Byambaa, International Master Elliott Winslow, and Experts Natalia Tsodikova and Pranav Nagarajan. Three rounds remain for the 86 competitors.

From round 6 of the Whitehead Tuesday Night Marathon:
Black to move (Byambaa–Lee after 28 bxa3)White to move (Walder–Krasnov after 26...f6)
Black to move (Sahin–Thornally after 16 Bxe4)White to move (Hood–Sadowsky after 36...Rc8)
White to move (Poling–Lamstein after 22...Kb8)Black to move (Ayinala–Sherwood after 50 Kg2)
White to move (Poler–Eastham after 29...f6)For the solutions, see the game scores (when available) for round 6.

Here is the key game from round 6. You can find this game and others from the round in PGN format at

Two Knights C58
Uyanga Byambaa–Andy Lee
Jay Whitehead Memorial Tuesday Night Marathon (6) 2014

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.Ng5 d5 5.exd5 Na5 6.Bb5+ c6 7.dxc6 bxc6 8.Qf3 cxb5

8...Rb8; 8...Bb7 and 8...Be7 are all more commonly seen.

9.Qxa8 h6

Now the game starts to enter uncharted territory. 9...Bc5 and 9...Nb7 have been played more often.

10.Ne4 Nd5


11.Nbc3 Nb6 12.Nf6+ gxf6 13.Qf3 (M. Lyell-A. Meszaros, Kecskemet 2013) with Black already better, is similar to the game.

11.Qb8 Nc6 12.Qxb5 Ndb4 13.Na3? (13.0–0 Ba6 14.Qa4 returning some of the booty leaves Black struggling to justify his previous play.) 13...Ba6 14.Qa4 Qd4 and Black was already winning in Estimo-Balinas, Manila 1968.

The test of Black's play may well be the direct 11.Nd6+ Bxd6 12.Qxd5 when it is not at all clear if Black has enough for the sacrificed exchange and two pawns after 12...0–0 13.Qxb5 Bb7 14.0–0 . Black has a lead in development but the offside knight on a5 renders his position extremely problematic.

11...Nb6 12.Nf6+

12.Qb8 Nc6 traps the queen.

12...gxf6 13.Qf3 Bb7

Material may be equal but Black's lead in development and active minor pieces promise White's king will not have an easy life.

14.Qg3 Nc6

Andy correctly brings his problem knight on a5, the bane of many a Two Knight's defender, back into the game.

15.Be3 Ne7

The direct 15...Nd4 was also attractive.

16.Qh3 Rg8 17.Rg1 Ned5 18.Nd2 Nb4 19.Rc1 N6d5

The prosaic 19...Nxa2 was also possible - 20.Ra1 Nb4 21.Rxa7 Nxc2+ 22.Ke2 Nxe3 23.fxe3 Bd5 looks quite strong.

20.a3 Nxe3 21.Qxe3 Nc6 22.Nb3 Nd4 23.Nxd4 Qxd4 24.Qxd4 exd4 25.g3

White has seemingly survived the worst of it, but still is suffering as it is hard to activate her rooks.

25...Bf3 26.c4

26.c3 was a better try.

26...b4! 27.c5 bxa3 28.bxa3

28...Rg5! 29.c6 Re5+ 30.Kf1

White is only playing with one rook.

30...Kd8 31.g4 Bxa3 32.Rc4 Bc5 33.Rg3 Bxc6 34.f4 Rd5 35.Rh3 Bb5 36.Rc1 Bd6 37.Ra1 a5 38.Kf2 Bb4 39.Rxh6 Bc3 40.Rb1 Bxd3 41.Rb7 Rd7 42.Rh8+ Ke7 43.Rbb8 Bc2 44.Rhe8+ Kd6 45.Rec8 a4 46.Ra8 Rc7 47.Ra6+ Kd7 48.Rf8 Ke7 49.Rfa8 d3 50.Rxa4 d2 0–1

The San Francisco Mechanics’ won their third round matchup with the New England Nor’easters by a score of 2½-1½. Grandmaster Daniel Naroditsky and FIDE Master Cameron Wheeler were the stars for the MI, with wins on boards one and three.

Go to for more information.

Ruy Lopez C93
Daniel Naroditsky–Alexander Ivanov
San Francisco-New England 2014

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0–0 Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 d6 8.c3 0–0 9.h3 Bb7 10.d4 Re8 11.Nbd2 Bf8 12.a3 h6 13.Bc2 d5 14.dxe5 Nxe5 15.Nxe5 Rxe5 16.Nf3 Re8 17.e5 Ne4 18.Bf4 c5 19.a4 Qb6 20.Nd2 Nxd2 21.Qxd2 Rad8 22.axb5 axb5 23.Qd3 g6 24.Qg3 Qe6 25.Ra7 Bc8 26.Rea1 d4 27.Be4 Bg7 28.Qf3 dxc3 29.bxc3 Re7 30.Ra8 Bxe5 31.Bxh6 Qf6 32.Qe3 Red7 33.Bf3 Rd3

34.Bg5! Qd6 35.Bxd8 Rxe3 36.Rxc8 Kg7 37.fxe3 Qd2 38.Bg5 Qxc3 39.Rd1 b4 40.Bd5 b3 41.Re8 b2 42.Re7 Qc1 43.Rxf7+ Kh8 44.Rff1 Qc2 45.Be6 c4 46.Rd8+ Kh7 47.Bg8+ 1–0

King’s Indian E66
Cameron Wheeler–Andrew Liu
San Francisco–New England

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.g3 Bg7 4.Bg2 0–0 5.Nc3 d6 6.Nf3 Nc6 7.0–0 a6 8.d5 Na5 9.Nd2 c5 10.Rb1 b5 11.cxb5 axb5 12.Nxb5 Rb8 13.Nc3 Bf5 14.e4 Bc8 15.Re1 Ba6 16.Bf1 Bxf1 17.Nxf1 Nd7 18.Bf4 Nc4 19.Qc2 Qa5 20.Rec1 Nde5 21.Kg2 Rb7 22.a3 Rfb8 23.Nd1 Rb3 24.Bxe5 Nxe5 25.Nd2 R3b7 26.f4 Nd7 27.Nc4 Qa6 28.Nde3 Rb3 29.Nf1 R3b5 30.Nfd2 Qb7 31.a4 Rb4 32.b3 Ra8 33.Na3 Nf6 34.Nb5 Rc8 35.Nc4 Ne8 36.Na5 Qd7 37.Nc6 Rxc6 38.dxc6 Qxc6 39.Re1 Nf6 40.Nc3 d5 41.e5 d4+ 42.Ne4 Nd5 43.Qxc5 Qb7 44.Rbc1 Nc3 45.Kg1 Rxb3 46.Nxc3 dxc3 47.Rxc3 Rxc3 48.Qxc3 Qa7+ 49.Qe3 Qxa4 50.Rc1 h5 51.Qc5 e6 52.Qb6 Bf8 53.Rb1 Qc2 54.Qb8 Kg7 55.Qb7 Bc5+ 56.Kh1 Bd4 57.Rf1 Qe2 58.Qg2 Qd3 59.Qf3 Qc2 60.Rd1 Bb6 61.Re1 Qd2 62.Rb1 Bc5 63.Qg2 Qd3 64.Re1 Bb6 65.Qe4 Qd2 66.Rf1 Bc5 67.h3 Be3 68.Qg2 Qb4 69.Rd1 Bc5 70.Kh2 h4 71.Qf3 Qb2+ 72.Qg2 hxg3+ 73.Kxg3 Qb3+ 74.Qf3 Qc2 75.Rh1 Bb4 76.h4 Qc3 77.Qxc3 Bxc3 78.Rc1 Bd2 79.Rc7 Be3


A quicker win could be had with 80.h5 gxh5 81.f5 exf5 82.e6 Kf6 (82...Kf8 83.Rxf7+ Ke8 84.Kh4) 83.e7.

80...Bd2 81.Rd7 Bc1 82.Rd3 Kh6 83.Ke4 Bb2 84.Rd7 Kg7 85.Rc7

Or 85.h5 gxh5 86.f5 exf5+ 87.Kxf5 Kg8 88.Kf6 h4 89.Rd3 Ba1 90.Rd2 Bc3 91.Rc2 Ba1 92.Rc8+ Kh7 93.Rc4 h3 94.Kxf7 winning. Cameron and his opponent played much of this ending with only a minute or less on the clock, as they were down to the thirty-second increment per move.

85...Kg8 86.Kd3 Kg7 87.Rb7 Bc1 88.Ke4 Kg8 89.h5 gxh5 90.Rb1 Ba3 91.Rh1 Kg7 92.Rxh5 Be7 93.f5 exf5+ 94.Kxf5 Bd8 95.Rh3 Be7 96.Rb3 Bh4 97.Rb7 Kf8 98.Ke4 Be7 99.Kd5 Bh4 100.Kd6 Bg3 101.Rb8+ Kg7


102.Rb2 Bf4 103.Rg2+ Kf8 104.Rf2 Bg3 105.Rf1 Bh2 106.Rf3 Ke8 107.Rf2 Bg3 108.Rg2 is another path.

102...Bh2 103.Rh3 Bf4 104.Rf3 Bh2 105.Rf2 1-0

Wednesday Night Blitz is back at the Mechanics’ Chess Club under the direction of Jules Jelinek. He reports:

Hi everyone,
At the Wednesday night blitz last week (September 3rd) , we had 10 players. The results were

1st - Jack Zhu
2nd - Jules Jelinek
3rd – David Flores

Congratulations to International Master Elliott Winslow, who won the Berkeley Chesss Club Marathon held between July 25 and September 5. The Mechanics’ instructor for its Saturday Chess Program for Kids scored 5½ from 6 to top the 26-player field. National Master Roger Poehlmann was second with 4½ points.

2) Los Angeles-San Francisco 1902

Los Angeles Wins at Chess
Tournament by Wire with San Francisco
One Dispute Is Referred to the
New York Clipper

A Day of Brilliant Chess Played Simultaneously In Los Angeles and the Northern Metropolis—Details of a Game between Griffith and Howe Played Over the Wires

Los Angeles chess players covered themselves with several hues of glory yesterday by administering to the San Francisco Chess club the first defeat in its history. Six boards were played over a leased wire of the Postal Telegraph Company. The Los Angeles players gathered at the rooms of the Los Angeles Chess and Checker club and the San Francisco team played at the Mechanics’ Institute, in that city.

The northern players were hard losers, and when they found that the redoubtable Kendrick, their premier player, in an effort to force a drawn game into a win, had run up against a combination which cost him his queen, they raised a howl and sent a sizzling message down, saying that W. S. Waterman, his astute opponent, was making impossible moves.

A perusal of the recorded moves showed this contention to be incorrect; then they substituted a claim that Judge Kendrick had made one move on his board and had given another to the telegraph operator. President Greenwood telegraphed back his regrets that such an unforeseen occurrence could have happened, but stated that in accordance with the rules of telegraph and correspondence play, his moves could not be retracted, and asked that the play continue. The San Francisco players refused to hear to this. Then President Greenwood proposed that a statement of the case be submitted to the New York Clipper for final decision. To this the northern players gave a grudging assent, and the official announcement of the result of the match will not be made until the editor of the Clipper is heard from.

The Los Angeles players displayed a form all though the match that was a surprise, even to their warmest admirers. The first win of the day was scored by E. R. Wickersham of the Los Angeles team, and the southern player forced the fighting all through the match. The pairing of the teams was as follows: Table No. 1, Waterman of Los Angeles versus Kendrick of San Francisco; table No. 2, R. B. Griffith of Los Angeles versus Howe of San Francisco; table No. 3, S. C. Candler of Los Angeles versus Manson of San Francisco; table No. 4, C. W. Waterman of Los Angeles versus Yerwartt of San Francisco; table No. 5, G. E. Northrop of Los Angeles versus Dr. Lovegrove of San Francisco; table No. 6, E. R. Wickersham of Los Angeles versus Neville of San Francisco. The Northern players had the attack on the odd-numbered boards.

Play commenced at 10 o’clock in the morning and the last telegrams were exchanged at 8 o’clock in the evening. Actual play ceased at 6 o’clock, but the remainder of the time was spent in San Francisco’s trying to get a readjustment of Kendrick’s lost game. E. R. Wickersham, at board six, played a dashing attack against Neville’s Sicilian defense and soon had his opponent in difficulties. He pressed his advantage home and had his opponent’s resignation before the other games were fairly started. Northrop, at board five, was not so fortunate. He was forced to play the defense to Dr. Lovegrove’s celebrated attack in the Ruy Lopez. For a time he was able to withstand the attack and keep an equal game. Shortly after one o’clock he made a couple of hasty moves in order to keep within his time limit, and Dr. Lovegrove took advantage of them to force an opening through Black’s center and followed his advantage up a few moves later by winning: a piece. Realizing the futility of continuing a contest at such odds against a player of Dr. Lovegrove’s caliber, Mr. Northrop resigned his game at the thirtieth move.

C. W. Waterman, at board four, won a comparatively bloodless victory. This was Yerwartt’s first appearance in match play and he played as if he had a bad attack of fright. He lost a piece early in the game and allowed two more to be spirited away from him before the afternoon was half over. There he seemed to realize that something was expected of him and he fought away with a hopelessly lost game until the referee requested him to resign.

Table three was the scene of the hardest fought conflict of the day. S. C. Candler, champion of the L. A. C. C. club, was defending a Sicilian against W. Manson, the most brilliant gambit player in the West. At the end of the forenoon’s play neither player had gained any advantage; in fact, up to the thirtieth move it was anybody’s game. At that stage Manson sacrificed a knight for two pawns and the attack, expecting to gain a tactical advantage, handler accepted the sacrifice and by a brilliant combination forced White to an exchange of queens that left Manson with a lost game. Two moves later, however, Candler made an error in recording one of his opponent’s moves, which led him to place one of his rooks en prise. This gave Manson such an advantage that two moves later Candler resigned what should have been a won game.

R. B. Griffith, at board two, played a spirited attack against Howe’s Queen’s Gambit and at the fortieth move had a won game. Here he tried for what looked like a grandstand finish, only to find that he was one move short in his combination and he only succeeded in drawing with a piece short, a game that a less brilliant player would have won easily.

The contest on board one was a surprise. Here W. S. Waterman played his first tournament game against Judge Kendrick, one of the veterans of the San Francisco team. For forty-seven moves he defended a Ruy Lopez in so able a manner that his opponent could make no headway. Nettled at this unexpected defense Judge Kendrick tried a queen sacrifice that did not turn out as he expected, and left him with a lost position; then came the insistence that he had made an error in recording his moves, and the dispute that has been referred to the New York Clipper for adjudication. The Los Angeles players are a unit in their assertion that there is nothing for the Clipper to decide. The American chess code plainly states that in all cases of a disputed move the one that the player sends his adversary must stand. The play was of a high order throughout and the Los Angeles players are justly proud of their brilliant victory.

The following game was contested during the match:

Center-Counter B01
R.B. Griffith–Howe
Los Angeles-San Francisco, 1902

1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Qxd5 3.Nc3 Qa5 4.Nf3 Nf6 5.Be2 e6 6.0–0 Be7 7.d4 0–0 8.Bg5 Re8 9.Qd2 Nbd7 10.Rfe1 c6 11.Bd3 Qd8 12.Rad1 Nf8 13.Ne4 Nxe4 14.Bxe4 Bxg5 15.Nxg5 h6 16.Nf3 Nd7 17.c3 Nf6 18.Bb1 Nh7 19.Ne5 f5 20.Re3 Rf8 21.Rg3 Rf6 22.Qf4 Qe8 23.Re1 b6 24.h4 Ba6 25.Rge3 Rc8 26.g4 g5 27.hxg5 Nxg5 28.gxf5 Qh5 29.Rc1 Kh7 30.Ng4

Remaining moves unplayable. White is completely winning at this point but the game was eventually drawn.

Source: Los Angeles Examiner March 24, 1902

3) Six-time US Champion Walter Browne Annotates

Queen’s Indian E15
Art Zhao–Walter Browne
Best of the West 2014 (1) 2014

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.g3 Ba6 5.b3 Bb4+ 6.Bd2 Be7 7.Bg2 c6 8.Nc3 d5 9.cxd5 cxd5 10.0–0 Nc6 11.Re1?

Interesting was 11.b4!? Bxb4 (not 11...Nxb4?! 12.Ne5 Bb7 13.Qa4+ Kf8 14.Nb5 Nc6 15.Rfc1 Nxe5 16.dxe5 Nd7 17.Nd6 Bxd6 18.exd6 Nc5 19.Qa3 Qxd6 20.Bb4 Kg8 21.Bxc5 bxc5 22.Rxc5 Bc6 23.e4 and White is better) 12.Qa4 Bb7 13.Ne5 Bxc3 14.Bxc3 0–0 15.Rac1 Qe8 16.Qa3 with compensation.

11...Rc8 12.a3 Ne4 13.b4 0–0 14.Rc1 Nxd2

14...f5 15.h4 Bc4 16.Be3 b5 17.Nxe4 dxe4 18.Nd2 Bd5 19.Nb3 a5 is better for Black.

15.Qxd2 Bc4 16.e4 a5

16...dxe4 17.Nxe4 Bd5 18.Qd3 Qd7 was slightly in my favor.

17.exd5 exd5 18.b5 Na7 19.a4 Ba3 20.Ra1

20.Rb1 Bb4 21.Re3 Rc7 22.Ne5 Nc8 23.Nc6 Qd6 24.Qc2 Na7 25.Nxd5 Bxd5 26.Bxd5 Nxc6 27.Bxc6 Qxd4 with equality.

20...Bb4 21.Rec1 Bxb5 22.axb5??

22.Ne5! Qd6 (22...Ba6 23.Qb2 Bxc3 24.Rxc3 equal) 23.Qe3 Bxc3 24.Rxc3 Rxc3 25.Qxc3 Rc8 26.Qb3 Bc4 27.Qf3 Rc7 28.Rc1 and Houdini says equal but I prefer Black!


Black is winning.

23.Nxb5 Bxd2 24.Nxd2 Qg5 25.f4 Qe7 26.Rd1 Rc2 0–1

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