Mechanics' Institute Chess Room Newsletter

by John Donaldson


 
Gens Una Sumus!

Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club News #697
January 30, 2015

Mistrust is the most necessary characteristic of the chessplayer.

—Siegbert Tarrasch, quoted in The Inner Game of Chess: How to Calculate and Win, by Andrew Soltis, revised edition, p. 261.

1) Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club News

Attendance in the Winter Tuesday Night Marathon is nearing the all-time Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club record, with 116 entrants to date. The only larger event held at the M.I. was the 1974 Stamer Memorial with 119 participants, won by many-time Oregon state champion Clark Harmon a point ahead of the field. Two participants in the Winter TNM, Thomas Maser and Peter Grey, also competed in the 1974 event.

International Master Elliott Winslow defeated National Master Tenzing Shaw in round four and is the only remaining perfect score in the Winter TNM. Top seed FIDE Master Andy Lee, currently rated 2387 and aiming for the Senior Master title (2400 USCF), heads a large group with 3½ points.

Four rounds remain in the USCF/FIDE rated competition and entries are still being accepted.


From round 4 of the Winter Tuesday Night Marathon:
White to move (Winslow–Shaw after 16...c5)White to move (Lee–Stearman after 13...f5)
White to move (Uzzaman–Reyes after 8...g6)Black to move (Chandrasekaran–Maser after 20 gxf3)
White to move (Abraham–Sherwood after 29...Bd8)White to move (Stefanov–Rothman after 3...Bg4)
For the solutions, see the game scores for round 4.

Young American players did well in Tata Steel (formerly Wijk aan Zee), which finished a few days ago. 21-year-old Wesley So tied for second in the top group with 8½ from 13, half a point behind winner Magnus Carlsen. Wesley’s 2854 performance raised his FIDE rating to number seven in the world at 2787½ and makes him the highest-rated American player, just ahead of Hikaru Nakamura who is number 10 at 2776. Now if we can only get Fabiano Caruana to return to representing the United States!

The second section of Tata Steel saw current Samford Fellow 23-year-old Sam Shankland score an undefeated 9 from 13 to finish third. Sam might even have done better if he had converted some superior positions that ended in draws. His 2696-FIDE result raises his rating to number 86 at 2661.

14-year-old newly-minted Grandmaster Samuel Sevian, a member of the 2011 and 2012 MI US Chess League teams, started slowly in the second group, with one draw and two losses, but finished strongly to score 7½/13, for a 2622 performance.

Currently the US has six players rated in the top 100. These are 7. Wesley So 2788 10. Hikaru Nakamura (2005 Samford Fellow) 2776, 59. Gata Kamsky (1994 Samford Fellow) 2680, =80-81. Alex Onischuk 2665, 86. Sam Shankland (Samford Fellow 2013) 2661; 96. Ray Robson (Samford Fellow 2009) 2656.

2014 Samford Fellow 19-year-old Daniel Naroditsky and Grandmaster Kayden Troff will join Hikaru Nakamura in playing the strong Gibraltar Open, which has just started. Daniel and Grandmaster James Tarjan, formerly of Santa Cruz and now calling Portland home, both won their round-one games.


Top American players lecture at MICC

Grandmaster Sam Shankland, currently rated #86 in the world at 2661 FIDE, gave a well-received lecture before round four of the Tuesday Night Marathon. The 23-year-old GM from Orinda showed several of his games from the second group at Tata Steel, where he finished a strong third in the 14-player section. Among those listening to Sam’s lecture were former U.S. Champions Nick de Firmian and Patrick Wolff and International Master Yian Liou, who was presented his check for $2502 as the 2015 Neil Falconer Award winner earlier in the evening. The Falconer Award is given annually to the highest-rated junior under 18 in Northern California.

The next Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club guest lecturer will be Wesley So, currently rated number seven in the world, on Tuesday, February 10, from 5:15 to 6:15 pm. All are welcome to attend this free lecture.


Ten best-attended Tuesday Night Marathons

1. Winter TNM 2015 (116 to date)
2. Fall TNM 2014 (103)
3. Winter TNM 2014 (100)
4. Spring TNM 2013 (93)
5. Summer TNM 2014 (91)
6. Jay Whitehead TNM 2013 (90)
7. Summer TNM 2013 (90)
8. Winter TNM 2013 (88)
9-11. Fall TNM 2013 (85)
9-11. Summer TNM 2004 (85)
9-11. Summer TNM 2005 (85)


Hi everyone,

The Wednesday Night Blitz restarted this week. It will be every Wednesday night (no interruptions) until mid-May, so circle your calendars to play Blitz on Wednesday night.

Last week we had nine players. The results were:

1st – Jules Jelinek
2nd – Arthur Ismakov
3rd – Tony Blum

Also, mark your calendars: the Steve Brandwein Memorial Blitz tournament (he will be attending) will be held at Mechanics Institute on Saturday February 21, 2015. Prizes are $400-$250-$150-$100-$100, and every participant gets a free book prize.

Jules Jelinek
Weekly Wednesday Night Blitz Coordinator

2) A Chess Poem by National Master Dennis Fritzinger

chess insomnia

going over
game positions
in my head
when i should be
asleep
& dreaming.

3) Here and There

Andy Ansel writes:

Here is an undated (though am guessing circa 1974-76) game, also without the location where it was played. It comes from a booklet produced by Martz that he used to teach a class in 1976.

Does anyone know what event the following game is from?

Sicilian B80
John Grefe–William Martz

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 e6 5. Nc3 Qc7 6. g3 a6 7. Bg2 Nf6 8.O-O d6 9. Re1 Bd7 10. Nxc6 bxc6 11. Na4 Be7 12. c4 O-O 13. c5 dxc5 14. Qc2 c4 15.Qxc4 Qa5 16. Be3 Rab8 17. Bc5 Bxc5 18. Nxc5 e5 19. Nxd7 Nxd7 20. Red1 Nc5 21. b3 Ne6 22. Qxc6 Nd4 23. Qd5 Rb5 24. Qd7 Rc5 25. Bf1 Rc2 26. Bd3 Rxa2 27. Rac1 Qb6 28. Rf1 g6 29. Rc8 Rd2 30. Rxf8+ Kxf8 31. Qc8+ Kg7 32. Bc4 Nf3+ 33. Kg2 Qf6 34. Qxa6 Ne1+ 35. Kh3 Qf3 36. Rxe1 Rxf2 37. Be2 Qg2+ 0-1

Source: Chess Study Group 1976 by Martz


Hello, I am Marian Stere, a chess historian from Romania, member of the KWF&A (Ken Whyld Foundation & Association for the Bibliography and History of Chess) and member of the Board of the Romanian Chess Federation.

I invite you now to visit my site dedicated to the history of the chess game in Romania—www.stere.ro [select your language from the Google Translate list at the lower right—ed.]—which will soon reach its first year of publication. Here you can find a lot of information, events, biographies, photos, statistics about Romanian chess life.

The content of the site is permanently growing, because in this stage is posted only around 20% from the information gathered till now. You can also access a lot of chess materials from our site: books, regulations, archival materials, magazines, periodicals, tournament bulletins and many others, cumulating over 35,000 pages from Romanian (and not only!) chess publications.

All for FREE download!

Best regards from Romania,
Marian Stere – marian_stere@yahoo.com


Dutch Defense A 85
Ken Smith–Max Burkett
Odessa (TX) First Oran Perry op (4), 1966

1.Nf3 f5 2.g3 d6 3.d4 c6 4.c4 Nf6 5.Nc3 e6 6.Bg2 Be7 7.0–0 Nbd7 8.Re1 d5 9.Ng5 Nf8 10.f3 Ng6 11.e4 0–0 12.cxd5 cxd5 13.exd5 exd5 14.Qb3 f4 15.gxf4 Kh8 16.Bf1 Qd6 17.Re5 Nxe5 18.fxe5 Qd8 19.exf6 Bxf6 20.f4 Bxd4+ 21.Kh1 Qxg5 22.fxg5 Rxf1+ 23.Kg2 Rg1+ 0-1

Source: Texas Knights July 1966, page 3.


A catalogue from a San Francisco book store in the donation given to the Mechanics’ last fall by Leighton Allen lists the following item:

Appeals to the Governor of California to save the life of Wesley Robert Wells, scheduled to die - April 9 by religious leaders, physicians, attorneys, judges, newspapers, labor leaders, trial jurors, public officials, prison psychiatrist, radio commentator, chess master. San Leandro, Religious Committee for the Defense of Wesley Robert Wells, 1954. 28p., 8½x11, wraps.

The appellants on Wells’ behalf include some of the most prominent professionals in the state, Black and White. The pamphlet includes a one-page letter from Henry Gross, at that time one of the strongest chessplayers in the state, who had played with Wells.

4) This is the end

This week we have a pair of studies. A chess study is a composed problem, usually an endgame, in which there are unexpected and artistic lines of play.

The first is a classic study by Richard Réti, published in 1921. Which color do you prefer?

White to move

Show solution

The second, by the same composer, appeared in 1931.

White to move

Show solution



 

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