Tuesday, August 19, 2014

BCC PRESENTS: LAST GRAND PRIX OF THE SUMMER // 4SS // 60 SD // RELAXED SETTING // LOW ENTRY FEE

BOYLSTON CHESS CLUB
PRESENTS
2014 GRAND PRIX
This Saturday, August 23, 2014
CHECK DETAILS FOR DISCOUNT
THIS EVENT IS PREFERRED BY KIDS OF ALL AGES
4SS // 60 SD // 5 SECOND DELAY // 
GIRLS AND WOMEN PLAY CHESS
BOYS AND MEN PLAY CHESS
TRY YOUR LUCK!
ALWAYS A FUN TOURNAMENT
PLAY TO SUCCEED
PARTICIPATE TO ADD TO YOUR
YEARLY TOTAL
BRING A FRIEND
BRING YOUR CLOCK
BRING YOUR THINKING CAP!
COME ON OVER!
GRAND PRIX STANDINGS THROUGH JULY
U2400: NM Hal Terrie 8.5; NM Siddharth Arun 8; NM Avraam Pismennyy 3
U2200: Nithin Kavi 14; Andrew Hoy 8; Arthur Tang/Yang Dai 5.5
U2000: Jason Tang 12; Robert Neale 9.5; Aashish Welling 9
U1800: Steve Stepak 16.5; David Martin 10; Phu Vo 9.5
U1600: Paul Becotte 5; Julian Morris/Will Wisdom 4
U1400: David Sun 9.5; David Zhou 9.5; Richard Chen 9
U1200: Tom Shneer 9.5; Daniel Zhou 7.5; Boshen Li 7
A copy of the complete standings for all sections
 is on the "pairings wall" of the tournament room!
It's still not too late to join
the BCC Grand Prix
for the year-end prizes!

Monday, August 18, 2014

BCC HOSTS: CHARLES DRAFT MEMORIAL // 33 PLAY // KAVI CLEAR 1ST // TIM O'MALLEY 1ST U1900 //

BOYLSTON CHESS CLUB PRESENTS 
THE CHARLES DRAFT MEMORIAL
PRE-TOURNAMENT INTRO
Walter Driscoll speaks while TD Bernardo Iglesias listens.
Walter was a long-time friend of Charles Draft who was totally 
paralyzed from a swimming-pool accident. Inspite of this 
disability, Charles graduated from Harvard College and went on
to learn and play chess. Walter organizes this event every year to keep the
memory of his friend alive as an inspiration to all of us who have
our own challenges to meet. [As captain of a championship Metropolitan
Chess League of Boston C-Team, my group went over to Charles' house
on several occasions to play our matches in the early 1990s. Charles was a most 
remarkable man who radiated kindness and confidence. (ed. Steve Stepak)]
CHARLES DRAFT MEMORIAL IN 2 SECTIONS: OPEN AND U1900
OPEN SECTION
Nithin Kavi was undefeated with 3.5/4 points to
secure clear 1st place, with a +72 to 2135 rating.
CRITICAL GAME
Nithin proved his mastery of the game on this occasion: winning
with black vs veteran champion FM Chris Chase in Round 3.
Chris did score 3 points for a share of 2-3rd place!
NM Siddharth Arun (right) took the full point from NM Hal Terrie
in Round 3 to share 2-3rd place with FM Chris Chase
and a +3 to 2239 rating. Hal scored 2.5 points with a +2 
to 2210 rating and clear 4th place.
U1900
ON TOP OF HIS GAME
Tim O'Malley scored 3.5/4 to take clear 1st place in
the U1900 section. This gave Tim a +25 to 1819 rating.
VETERAN AND YOUTH SHARE 2-3RD
Terrence (The General) Fricker scored 3 points to share 2-3rd
place with Anton Barash. Here Fricker is seen playing black
vs 7 yr old Derek Jin who was 1/3 and a +7 to 1547 rating.
Young chess prodigy Anton Barash scored 3 points
to share 2-3rd place with Terrence Fricker.
For his efforts, Anton earned a +47 to 1748 rating.
Boshen Li vs Stephen Savage, Round 1: draw.
Savage scored 2.5 points to secure clear 4th place.
Boshen had 1 point for a +37 to 1240 rating.
SIGHTS AROUND THE HALL
Sky-view, Round 1.
10 yr old Brandon Wu faces off with NM Chris Williams in Round 1.
Chris won this encounter for 2 points, Brandon broke even with
1 win, 1 loss and 2 draws for a +3 to 1946 rating.
FACES
(left to right) Matthew Manzo, Jesse Nicholas, Carissa Yip, 
NM Siddharth Arun, Round 1.
Alvin Tan, Natasha Christiansen, and Joseph Bihlmeyer, Round 1.
Professor Jerry Williams, black vs Nithin Kavi, Round 1.
Harold Dondis, white, vs Bernardo Iglesias, TD, in an extra
 game. [Harold signed up for the open section and was the odd
 man out in Round 2. As the lowest rated player, Harold secured  
a full-point bye and requested to play a side-game,  just to keep 
limber.]   (background): Anton Barash vs Nicholas Lesieur;
Richard Kahn, black vs Andrew Boyer; James Cannatelli vs
Tim O'Malley.
CLOSE-UP: SHOUT OUT: "WELCOME"!
Richard Kahn, black vs Andrew Boyer, Round 2.
Richard and Andrew went 2/4 for a +34 to 1609 and +7 to
1717 rating respectively. (white/green hat): James Cannatelli vs
Tim O'Malley. This is the first event at the BCC for both 
Andrew and Jimmy: a hearty welcome to you both!
Daniel Wang, black vs Nicholas Lesieur, Round 1. Both
Daniel and Nicholas scored 2 points. Daniel who has been away for 2 months, 
and is now back at the BCC (welcome back, Daniel)  had a +23 to 1522 rating.
RECRUITMENT
Fiona Wang (Derek Jin's mom) talks in Chinese to JinLi
while 6 yr old daughter MuMu gets the feel of things at the Club.
Fiona is explaining all the wonderful chess activities at the BCC
for kids, like the Sunday Scholastics and the Saturday events
featuring all the wonderful juniors participating in both the 
open sections and under sections of our tournaments, 
not to mention BCC Chess Camp for the very novice kids 
(one this coming week!)
BERNARDO IGLESIAS: TD
PHOTOS: STEVE STEPAK

Thursday, August 14, 2014

3 POINTS TO PONDER // A WINNING TOURNAMENT STRATEGY // KNIGHTS // BISHOPS // DRAW VS LOSS //

PREPARATION FOR 
BCC CHARLES DRAFT MEMORIAL
Chess is a very complex sport, requiring the mastery of a multitude of skills and elements of the game. Let's focus on 3 points: 1. knight on the rim; 2. bishops of opposite colors; confronting the decision: draw vs loss.

One of the most fascinating and instructive annotated games ever published is found in Adrain Mikhalchishin and Oleg Stetsko's Fighting Chess with Magnus Carlsen [Zurich: Edition Olms] 2012, pp. 125ff. I have provided some computer analysis of this game below (QGD D43):
After 25.Kf1, GM Mikhalchishin proposes 25.  . . . Bd7!?; 26.a4 Bc6; 27.Nd6 Be5; 28.Rc1 Bxd6;
29.Rc3 Bb4; 30.Rc2 Rd8; with a dynamic equality.  For example:  26.Nc5 Bc6; 27.b4 Rd8; 
28.Ke1 a5; 29.bxa5 Na4. Mikhalchishiin also states that after the text move 26.Nc5 Bxc4? can
be replaced by 26. . . . Na4; 27.Nxe6 Bxa1; 28.bxa4 fxe6; 29.Bxe6 Kg7 30.Nxe4 where it is 
proposed that if White's position is winning at all, it is a complex, difficult one to find and execute.  
Mikhalchishin and Stetsko further mention the rim-knight idea evidently first coined by the
master Siegbert Tarrasch, and proposes that in this case, Carlsen does find a most creative way to
use the rim-knight to his advantage in punishing Onischuk for his previously played innacuracies.
My comment: play the position and keep your mind clear of chess cliches.

It is also said that "bishops of opposite color" endgames are always drawn.  This may or may not be
true. Indeed, Carlsen (white) beat Sergey Karjakin at Wijk san Zee (Tata Steel) 2013, R=8 in 92 moves in a bishops of opposite color endgame with connected central passed pawns and advanced king.  The point: to win a chess game requires lots of guts, fortitude, endurance, and a sharp, keen
eye for accuracy.  Bottom line: to win a chess games requires lots of hard work. The reward can be
winning the tournament vs not winning it.  

Note, that for move 54. . . . g4; I substituted 54. . . . Bc8; not moving black's
g-pawn yet (winning vs drawing a complex endgame often depends on
Zugzwang {running out of good moves} so one wants to save pawn moves
to the point when one absolutely needs to move them. This substitution seems
to allow Black to hold the position. If there are readers out there who can 
find a winning line for White from this point even with my 54. . . . Bc8 move, 
I would be please to see the line.  Please note your win in a "comment" and play 
out the line to a forced win. [Will Wisdom had an idea that in the Note to the text move
54. . . . g4, ( better is: 54. . . . Bc8;  But, White wins by bringing King around the board to 62. Ka7;
63.Ka8; 64.Kb8 as follows): 55.Ke5 g4 56.c5 Ke8 57.c6 Bf5 58.Kd6 Be4 59.Kc7 Bd5
60.Kb6 g3 61.hg3 Be6 62.Ka7 Bc8 63.Ka8 Ba6 64.Kb8 g5 65.c7 Kd7 66.g4 Ke8
67.c8=Q Bc8 68.Kc6 Kf7 69.Kd7 and game over!] The conclusion: the king is a
fighting piece, especially in an endgame. This analysis is good for
 a tournament like the BCC's Charles Draft Memorial, your best bet in a bishops
of opposite color endgame, is to force your opponent to prove the draw. Since
endgames of this duration often include time-pressure situations, the player who can fight
on, cooly and accurately, is more than likely to win a bishops of opposite color endgame.
Again, a win gives you a greater chance to claim the 1st prize in the tournament
or in your section.
BALANCING ACT
To draw, or not to draw, that is the question!
The temptation is great: to stretch a drawn position to the point where it takes
your opponent to come up with some precise, punishing moves, to refute your
brazen, (reckless) decision. Well, Ivan Saric (2671) found such moves vs 
Magnus Carlsen (2877) in their encounter in Round 10 of the Tromso FIDE
Chess Olympiad 2014 in a Ruy Lopez (Bird's Defense ECO: C61)
First, let it be remembered, that the most common move for White, after 3. . . . Nd4;
4.Nxd4 exd4 (defining the Bird's Defense) is 5.d3 and that can be played out to
a draw with accurate, theoretically known moves [see text above].  Saric tried 5.Bc4!? 
but after 7. . . . Be7, it seems that Black has attained equality.  On move 10. . . . Bd6!?
Carlsen played what I categorize as a "fun" move. The computer brought black
equality on move 41. . . . Bb7 [see note to move 10. . . . Bd6, above], 
after the more "circumspect" 10. . . . Bd7,  supporting the subsequent . . . Bc6; 
and . . . Bxd5 creating a rather balanced, equal position. But should we think that 
Carlsen, not only rated 206 points higher than his 24 yr old opponent from Croatia, 
but more significantly, being the reigning World Chess Champion,
World Rapids Champion and World Blitz Champion, would think of 
contemplating a draw so early in the game?  Not likely!  Carlsen is a fighter, at the 
very least.  But we see that even with all of Carlsen's intriguing attempts to obfuscate 
the position at so many points, Saric found the global refutation to Carlsen's play and 
should be praised for his courage and poise, over the board, in confronting such a formidable opponent as Magnus Carlsen  My only question is: should Carlsen have, as Board 1 of 
Norway's Olympiad Team "1", been happy to secure the half-point, in the name of 
team-spirit? I have yet to hear an interview with Carlsen on this most fascinating point: 
the responsibility for the team vs the playing out of one's egotistic, risky plans.
It is my view, that maintaining equality throughout the game is not an easy task,
especially when you've decided not to "complicate things" vs an opponent who you
feel you should beat. Yet, by keeping things level, you force your opponent to come
up with correspondingly adequate moves as well, to hold the fort, a nerve-racking
mental challenge, especially in time-pressure. This makes chess a sport as well as an
intellectual exercise: adding the psychological element of "doubt" in a time-scramble.
Well, dear chess players, this Saturday, August 16th, you will be confronted with
the decision: "to draw or not to draw . . . " As a team player, take the draw; yet, as
an individual tournament player, is not a half point better than a loss?  
This Saturday: your call!  Good luck and good chess.


CHARLES DRAFT MEMORIAL
SATURDAY, (TOMORROW)
AUGUST 16, 2014
See you there!
PS
LATE BREAKING NEWS:
JUDITH POLGAR RETIRES 
FROM PROFESSIONAL CHESS
Check out the link below for some nice videos 
of Judith Polgar (FIDE: 2735 peek) in action 
as well as a compelling 2 part youtube 
of her analysis of the game:
Karpov - Polgar, Wijk aan Zee, 2003
in preparation for your participation in the 
BCC Charles Draft Memorial.

Monday, August 11, 2014

GRANDMASTER SIMUL // LARRY CHRISTIANSEN // SOUTH STATION // TUESDAY // 5:00 - 7:00 PM // FREE //

EQUIPMENT PROVIDED
3 Time USA Chess Champion Larry Christiansen
will give a simultaneous exhibition at South Station
Boston, Tuesday, the 12th of August (tomorrow).
Bring your pencil and paper to record the game;
bring your camera to photograph the scene,
and bring your thinking cap. Larry is a very nice
man but he is quite accurate in his moves.
See you tomorrow!

BCC: LEGENDS OF CHESS // NEZHMETDINOV // 12 DISCIPLES // CHASE 1ST / DONDIS U1800 //

SAILING TO VICTORY
FM Chris Chase plays a perfect 4-0
to take clear 1st place (payout: $60) and a +1 to 2406 rating.
SCHLIEMANN DEFENSE CLINIC
NM Hal Terrie sets up a risky line in the C63 Ruy Lopez to test
the young Derek Chubo Zhao. Hal won the game.
Derek got a free post-mortem lesson on how to meet this
line more effectively, should he encounter it in future games.
(background): Will Wisdom and Ahaan Rungta.
A CLEAR MIND
Harold Dondis, Esq. who is almost
92, scored 2.5 points to claim 3rd place
in the Open Section as well as the
U1800 prize of $30. Bravo, Harold!
CHESS FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY
Xian Feng Zhao and his two sons: Richard who is
2 1/2 yrs old and 8 yr old Derek Chubo Zhao.
MENTORING THE KIDS
Veteran chess player, Richard Kahn checks out the clock
as 6 yr old Raymond Xu demonstrates its salient features.
Will Wisdom, black vs Jesse Nicholas, Round 2.
(background): Ahaan Rungta, black vs Greg Ardini.
Will scored 2 points for a +18 to 1568 rating. Bravo, Will!
Nathan Smolensky, scored 2 points for a
+3 to 1952 rating. 
NATHAN SMOLENSKY: TD
PHOTOS: STEVE STEPAK

BCC REUBENS LANDEY // BCC CH QUALIFIER // TED CROSS TAKES CLEAR 1ST // 5 TIE FOR 2ND //

REUBENS LANDEY
BOYLSTON CHESS CLUB
CHAMPIONSHIP QUALIFIER
12 PLAYER EVENT
Ted Cross scored 3.5 points out of 4 to take
clear 1st place and a +37 to 2041 rating.
2-6th
Ed Astrachan vs Andrew Hoy, Round 3.
Each scored 2.5 points to share 2-6th place.
Jared Becker, Round 3. Jared scored 2.5 points
to share 2-6th place.
Natasha Christiansen, 2.5 points
for a share of 2-6th place.
Tim O'Malley, 2.5 points, sharing
2-6th place.
NATHAN SMOLENSKY: TD
PHOTOS: STEVE STEPAK