Saturday, May 30, 2009

Anderssen - Kieseritzky, London, 1851

One of Anderssen’s masterpieces, known as the “Immortal Game.” Black neglects his development, and Anderssen offers both Rooks to show that two active pieces are worth more than a dozen sleeping at home.

Anderssen - Kieseritzky
London, 1851

1. e4 e5 2. f4 exf4 3. Bc4 Qh4+ 4. Kf1 b5 5. Bxb5 Nf6 6. Nf3 Qh6 7. d3 Nh5 8. Nh4 Qg5 9. Nf5 c6 10. g4 Nf6 11. Rg1 cxb5 12. h4 Qg6 13. h5 Qg5 14. Qf3

Now threatening to trap the Black Queen with 15. Bxf4.

14. ... Ng8 15. Bxf4 Qf6 16. Nc3 Bc5 17. Nd5 Qxb2 18. Bd6!?

Robert Huebner wrote a very long article anbout this game, in which he claimed that this move was inferior, preferring the rather prosaic 18. d4. The main point of Andersson’s move is to divert the Black Queen from the a1-h8 diagonal. Now Black cannot play 18. ... Bxd6? 19. Nxd6+ Kd8 20. Nxf7+ Ke8 21. Nd6+ Kd8 22. Qf8 mate.


18. ... Qxa1+

According to Huebner, Black can put up a fight with 18. ... Qxa1+ 19. Ke2 Qb2! 20. Kd2 Bxg1, gaining a useful tempo.

19. Ke2 Bxg1

And not 19. .. Qxg1 20. Nxg7+ Kd8 21. Bc7 mate.

20. e5! Na6

More resistance could have been offered by 20. ... Ba6, but White should still win after 21. Nc7+ Kd8 22. Nxa6 Bb6 23. Qxa8.

21. Nxg7+ Kd8 22. Qf6+! Nxf6 23. Be7 mate

Monday, May 25, 2009

Four on top

The four top-rated players have tied for first in the 2009 Memorial Day Classic. GM Melikset Khachiyan, IMs Enrico Sevillano and Andranik Matikozyan, and Senior Master John Bryant played a round-robin on the final day, and with all games drawn the four tied for first with 4.5-1.5. Khachiyan had the best tiebreaks, and will have his name engraved on the permanent rotating trophy. In other action, Bobby Hall and Chris McKay tied for first in the Premier, Bret Strunk, David Minasyan, Don Bolt and Christian Garcia topped the Amateur, and Virgil Sezonov, Alexander Xie and Jonathan Homidan took top honors in the Reserve. Craig Faber, William Pennucci and Henry Castro tied for first in the Action, while Robert Oesterlein and W. Gary Good split one of the Hex sections, while Willis Kim and Robert Hatfield tied in the other. Click here for standings of all sections, and a selection of games in Java viewer or PGN.

(Photos: Andranik Matikozyan faces off against Enrico Sevillano, while John Bryant (in the red shirt) battles Khachiyan.)

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Memorial Day Classic, day 2

After the merge, GM Melikset Khachiyan and IM Andranik Matikozyan led the field with 3-0, but their first-board draw allowed IM Enrico Sevillano and John Daniel Bryant to join them in the lead. Click here for standings, or click here for Round 5 pairings (subject to change).

In the one-day Scholastic, both sections saw perfect 5-0 scores, with Sean Manross taking the Open and Hovanes Salvaryan the Reserve.

Michael Brown – Michael Casella [E92]
Memorial Day Classic, Los Angeles 2009
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.Be2 0–0 6.Nf3 e5 7.Be3 h6 8.0–0 Ng4 9.Bc1 Nc6 10.d5 Ne7 11.Nd2 f5 12.exf5 gxf5 13.Bxg4 fxg4 14.Nde4 Bd7 15.Be3 Nf5 16.Qd2 a6 17.b4 Qe8 18.Rae1 Qg6 19.Ng3 h5 20.c5 Nd4 21.Nge4 h4 22.Ng5 h3 23.gxh3 Nf3+ 24.Nxf3 gxf3+ 25.Bg5 Rf4 26.h4 Rxh4 27.Kh1 Rxh2+ 0–1

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Memorial Day Classic update

After two rounds, four players are tied for the lead with 2-0 -- GM Melikset Khachiyan, IMs Enrico Sevillano and Jack Peters, and Senior Master John Daniel Bryant. Standings and round-3 pairings are posted. Note that the pairings are subject to change until 10:20 a.m.

IM Enrico Sevillano – Craig Faber [B01]
Memorial Day Classic, Los Angeles 2009
1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Qxd5 3.Nc3 Qa5 4.d4 c6 5.Bd3 Nf6 6.Nge2 Bg4 7.f3 Bh5 8.0–0 e6 9.Qe1 Bg6 10.Be4 Nbd7 11.Bf4 Nxe4 12.fxe4 Bb4 13.a3 Bxc3 14.Nxc3 0–0 15.Kh1 Rfe8 16.e5 Bxc2 17.Qe2 Bg6 18.h4 h5 19.Ne4 Bxe4 20.Qxe4 Qd5 21.Qe2 g6 22.Qf2 f5 23.exf6 Kf7 24.Rae1 a5 25.Qe3 Rh8 26.Rf3 Nb6 27.Qb3 Ra6 28.Bc7 Qxb3 29.Rxb3 Nd5 30.Rxb7 1–0

Ernesto Soto – Renae Robles [B01]
Memorial Day Classic, Los Angeles 2009

1.e4 d5 2.d4 dxe4 3.Nc3 Bf5 4.f3 exf3 5.Nxf3 Nf6 6.Bd3 Bg4 7.0–0 c6 8.Bc4 e6 9.h3 Bxf3 10.Rxf3 Be7 11.Rg3 g6 12.Bh6 Bf8 13.Bxf8 Kxf8 14.Qd2 h5 15.Rf1 Kg7 16.Rgf3 Nbd7 17.Ne4 Nxe4 18.Rxf7+ Kg8 19.Bxe6 Ndf6 20.R7xf6+ 1–0

Lina Grumette Memorial Day Classic, day 1

The 2009 Lina Grumette Memorial Day Classic is off to a good start, with 71 players in the 3-day schedule (led by GM Melikset Khachiyan and IMs Enrico Sevillano and Jack Peters), and at least 40 more joining in tomorrow. Standings are posted here, and will be updated throughout the weekend.

GM Melikset Khachiyan – Carlos Garcia [C41]

Memorial Day Classic, Los Angeles 2009

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 exd4 4.Nxd4 g6 5.Nc3 Bg7 6.g3 Nc6 7.Nxc6 bxc6 8.Bg2 Ba6 9.Ne2 Ne7 10.0–0 0–0 11.Re1 Qd7 12.Nf4 Rae8 13.c3 Nc8 14.Be3 Nb6 15.Bd4 Be5 16.Bxe5 dxe5 17.Ne2 Rd8 18.Qxd7 Rxd7 19.b3 Rfd8 20.c4 Rd2 21.Nc3 Rc2 22.Rec1 Rxc1+ 23.Rxc1 Rd2 24.Bh3 Kg7 25.Kg2 Kf6 26.Kf3 Ke7 27.Ke3 Rb2 28.Bf1 Nd7 29.Bd3 Nc5 30.Bb1 Bc8 31.Nd1 Rxb1 32.Rxb1 Ne6 33.Nb2 Nd4 34.Nd3 f6 35.f4 1–0

Carl Pilnick – IM Jack Peters [E63]

Memorial Day Classic, Los Angeles 2009

1.c4 g6 2.Nc3 Bg7 3.g3 d6 4.d4 Nc6 5.Nf3 Nf6 6.Bg2 0–0 7.0–0 a6 8.b3 Rb8 9.Bb2 b5 10.cxb5 axb5 11.d5 Na5 12.e3 b4 13.Ne2 e6 14.dxe6 fxe6 15.Rc1 Qe7 16.Qc2 Ba6 17.Rfe1 c5 18.Bxf6 Qxf6 19.Nf4 Bb7 20.e4 Bh6 21.Nh3 Bxc1 0–1

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

USCF Election: Dark is the day

It is the logic of our times
No subject for immortal verse
That we who lived by honest dreams
Defend the bad against the worse.

We’re two months closer to the USCF election. The candidates have had two chances to present their cases in Chess Life, but from where I’m sitting little has changed. I gave more detail in my earlier post, but here’s the Cliffs Notes version.

Michael Atkins
– Active TD in the MD-VA area. He’s shown a certain lack of restraint with regard to the USCF’s legal problems, but he’s qualified for the job.
Jim Berry – Coming off a two-year term. I am generally unenthusiastic about people running for re-election, but he’s done well enough.
Ruth Haring – Experienced player (she competed in the U.S. Women’s Championship a few times), excellent real-world credentials. A shot in the dark, but worth a try.

Mike Nietman – I don’t know him well. Personally pleasant. Mainly a scholastic person, which is not a plus in my book but not disqualifying either.
Bill Goichberg – I wish I could rank him higher. I have enormous respect for Bill’s accomplishments, but he’s a lightning rod for controversy and he’s been on the Board too long. He’s served with honor; now he should step aside with honor.
Mikhail Korenman – He did a good job a few years ago with the “Karpov Chess School” in Lindsborg, Kansas, but his performance since then has been unimpressive. Seems to lack follow-through.
Eric Hecht – He was one of Blas Lugo’s backers for the Miami Open (see below). Unless he dissociates himself from that fiasco (which he hasn’t even tried to do yet), I have to rate him as unacceptable.

Blas Lugo – IM and tournament organizer from Florida. Only one problem, but it’s a big one – at last year’s Miami Open, he reneged on a guaranteed prize fund, shorting the players by several thousand dollars. If you’ve ever played in a tournament and expected to receive your prize, don’t vote for him.
Brian Mottershead & Brian Lafferty – A pair of nasty, backbiting trolls with zero knowledge or experience in chess, who think they should be able to start at the top. In a better year, their candidacies would be a joke. Let’s make it so.
Sam Sloan – Perpetual candidate. Serial and vexatious litigant. Ratbag of note. If you want to cast a protest vote, write in Mickey Mouse. He’d do a better job.