Archive for the ‘World Chess News’ Category

Chess Chat: Q&A with Devanshi Rathi, UC Berkeley Student and Nonprofit Founder

April 16, 2019

Devanshi Rathi is a current undergraduate student at the University of California, Berkeley. She is a passionate chess player and enjoys playing and watching different sports. Her mission in life is to create a positive difference in the world around her. She is trying to do that through her foundation, the Devanshi Rathi Foundation, a registered non-profit company. In her free time, she likes to write about sports and loves to take interviews of different players because it leaves her inspired.

How old were you when you first learned how to play chess? Who taught you?

I was eight years old (in 2008) when I first learnt how to play chess. I learnt from my school coach and via self-practice in the beginning.

How has chess effected your decision making process off the board?

Chess has definitely helped my decision making process off the board. I try to strategize and plan my ‘moves’ well in advance before actually ‘playing’ them. Obviously, I don’t always go according to my original plan, but that happens most of the times in chess as well.

How did your earlier career choices lead you to where you are now?

I am not sure about this. I tried to turn into a professional chess player, or at least was working towards it for about a year and a half, but I had other interests and passions in life that always made me distracted. To become a professional, one needs sole focus on the game, and I just couldn’t do that. Moreover, my multiple interests led me to pursue a major in college that is independently designed, and I’m currently working on how I can get an effective research proposal in order to declare the same.

How would you define your chess style?

I think it would be aggressive and attacking. I don’t like to defend that much, maybe I’m not that good at it!

Does your chess style transfer over into your business decisions as well?

Yes, but I feel that I tend to be more combinatory in my business decisions. Too much aggression in the business field can cost one a lot.

What has been your worst chess mistake which has given you the biggest lesson?

My worst chess mistake would be to not participate in a number of tournaments in my earlier years. I practiced myself instead of playing in different events. It has made me realise that one must make the most of one’s current time and not think too much in advance. It is the same in chess- one shouldn’t go so deep in their calculations that we lose sight of the current position.

Do you think chess has helped you to become more resilient in life?

Yes, of course! Participating in competitions definitely helps one to get more resilient and that reciprocates into one’s personal life as well, according to my experience.

What do you hope to achieve professionally during the next couple of years?

I am currently exploring my options. I’m taking a diverse set of classes for my interdisciplinary major and can only see what happens as it happens. Not planning too much at the moment. This could be a contradiction to what I said earlier about me planning well in advance. However, this is a situation where I feel that the more ‘time’ you take, the better move you would ‘play’.

What is the biggest challenge to achieving that goal?

As I don’t know the goal yet, the biggest challenge would be to find my path.

How would you relate these goals and challenges to the chessboard?

In chess, one needs to find the real path to victory and that can take the whole game. Similarly, I’m taking my time to decide.

Could you please leave us with a favorite piece of chess wisdom to conclude this interview?

Chess is an ocean where an ant can swim and an elephant can drown.

Thanks a lot for giving me this opportunity to do this interview!

To find out more about the Devanshi Rathi Foundation and Project Checkmate, please visit: https://projectcheckmate.weebly.com/

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Vladimir Kramnik’s Career in Chess

January 30, 2019

kramnik_biog_06

On the occasion of Vladimir Kramnik’s retirement from competitive chess, I present a retrospective review of past articles on Kramnik featured on this blog. Enjoy…

 

Tromso Chess Olympiad Round 5: Kramnik vs Topalov

August 7, 2014: Thus far, the  41st Chess Olympiad in Tromso, Norway has lived up to all the hype surrounding the event. Almost all of the top chess players in the world are competing for personal glory and, more importantly, national pride. Even with hundreds of exciting games played in each round, all eyes were focused squarely onto the Russia-Bulgaria match which featured a game between the rivals, Vladimir Kramnik and Veselin Topalov…

 

Kasparov Vs. Kramnik – Queen Sacrifice move 12

May 18, 2014: Definitely a most worthy game!

 

Kramnik vs. Svidler: 2009 Tal Memorial

November 10, 2009: Below is Kramnik’s win over Svidler in a Gruenfeld Defense: Exchange Variation. A lot could be stated about the opening theory as Kramnik tried a new move successfully with 12. h4. However, I do not believe Kramnik’s courageous new move is to blame for Svidler’s failure. Instead, Svidler seemed to have forgotten that “Knight’s on the rim are dim” and attempted to spar with a world champion contender minus a Knight. I say minus a Knight due to the fact that Svidler moved his Knight to a6 on move 11 and then left it there to rot…

 

Anand-Kramnik: Game 6 from the 2008 World Championship of Chess

October 22, 2008: The championship chess board in Bonn has become a form of torture for Vladimir Kramnik. After loosing game 6, Kramnik has just six games left and is down three full points. A loosing streak against a world champion is very hard to fix. In Kramnik’s case, achieving a win against Anand must seem like a desperate dream of freedom for a convict walking the “green mile.”

 

Anand-Kramnik: Game 5 from the 2008 World Championship of Chess

October 21, 2008: Kramnik must be feeling miserable. Anand has beaten him with the black pieces once again. Now down two full points with 7 games to go, Kramnik must take considerable risks if he is to have any chance at becoming world champion again. Taking these risks could easily backfire and have the effect of causing this match to become a total blow-out…

 

Anand-Kramnik: Game 4 from the 2008 World Championship of Chess

October 19, 2008: It was back to the “drawing” board in game 4 from Bonn, Germany.  Defending champion Viswanathan Anand played the white side in the solid Queen’s Gambit Declined. Kramnik ended up with the ubiquitous isolated queen’s pawn and allowed Anand no opportunities for victory…

 

Anand-Kramnik: Game 3 from the 2008 World Chess Championship

October 18, 2008: In game 3 from the 2008 World Chess Championships, Viswanathan Anand put on a tactical display using his fiery attacking style to beat Vladimir Kramnik into submission…

 

Anand-Kramnik: Game 2 from the 2008 World Chess Championship

October 17, 2008: The second game from the 2008 World Chess Championship ended in a draw. In an attempt to show off some of his preparation for playing white against the Slav(1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6), Anand decided to use 1.d4 instead of his favorite 1.e4. Kramnik avoided the technical Slav lines in game 1 and chose to use the Nimzo-Indian Defence(1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4) in game 2. Perhaps Kramnik is concerned about Anand’s knowledge in the Slav. This game becomes very complicated very quickly after Anand plays the surprising 4.f3 which is a favorite of Russian grandmaster Yuri Yakovich…

 

Anand-Kramnik Game 1 from the 2008 World Chess Championship

October 15, 2008: Kramnik faced off against Anand in Game 1 of the World Chess Championship Match on October 14, 2008. The “Battle of Bonn” began with little surprise as Anand chose to play one of his main weapons referred to as the Slav Defense to the Queen’s Gambit Declined. The game concluded after move 32 when a draw was agreed to…

 

Team Kramnik

October 15, 2008: For the 2008 World Chess Championship match in Bonn, Germany, Vladimir Kramnik has selected these players as his “Seconds.” I hope my readers will visit again tomorrow to view my coverage for game 1 of the 2008 World Chess Championship Match between Viswanathan Anand and Vladimir Kramnik…

 

My Friends are Better Than Yours… Anand and Kramnik Get Seconds

October 13, 2008: The upcoming 12 game World Championship match between Anand and Kramnik is creating internet rumors faster than Alexandra Kosteniuk makes blitz moves in China. Most of these rumors seem to be speculation on opening choices and who is going to be the “Second” for Anand and Kramnik. A “Second” refers to a chess players choice of another strong chess player to help him/her prepare for a particular opponent. Generally this early preparation focuses on finding new ideas and weaknesses in an opponent’s opening repertoire. The role of the Second was arguably much more important in the time before large chess databases and strong computer engines. With the onset of the computer dominated age of chess, we are also seeing match play that has a much shorter structure and therefor less games to try prepared innovations. The upcoming match between Anand and Kramnik is only scheduled for 12 rounds. I am confident that both Anand and Kramnik are capable of coming up with six very good ideas as to what to try with each color. For the upcoming Anand vs. Kramnik match, a Second’s primary role will likely be acting as the flashy Rybka yielding intimidator in a world champion contender’s entourage. Basically a “my friend is stronger than your friend” ornament meant to impress upon the chess world that the player that attracts friends/disciples with higher ratings must be the next chess messiah…

 

Unfair Criticism of Kramnik

October 8, 2008: Tonight I attempt to defend Vladimir Kramnik from those who cast stones at the former World Chess Champion. I believe the upcoming 2008 World Chess Championship will be an exciting event played between two outstanding chess players who are wonderful ambassadors for the game of chess. Below are my opinions about the three most common critical myths that haunt Kramnik…

 

Kramnik vs. Anand 2008 (preview game revisited)

October 7, 2008: Seven Days until the Anand vs. Kramnik 2008 World Championship Match. I am revisiting a game they played in 2007 at the request of several fans of my blog…

 

Kramnik vs. Anand

October 4, 2008: Tonight I present another preview game for the upcoming World Chess Championship match between Viswanathan Anand and Vladimir Kramnik. The game I chose is a recent example of the two contenders going head to head in a major event.  My analysis is above the game that was played at the Corus tournament in 2007…

 

Can Kramnik Win With The Black Pieces? Will It Matter?

September 30, 2008: Between 1989 and 2008 Viswanathan Anand and Vladimir Kramnik played 51 head-to-head games under classical conditions. The results below show that Kramnik has yet to win a game as black when up against Anand. This is a remarkable statistic based on the number of match-ups these two chess players have had. Vladimir Kramnik’s win with white and draw with black strategy can hurt his tournament results but is exceptionally difficult to crack in match play. Unless he should find himself in danger of loosing the match, I would be very surprised if Kramnik changes his goal for the black pieces…

 

Vladimir Kramnik in Germany

September 27, 2008: The upcoming World Championship Chess Match against Viswanathan Anand is not Vladimir Kramnik’s first chess match in Germany. In July of 2000 Kramnik played another high profile match in Deutschland. This time his opponent was the highly touted computer program Deep Junior. Because his opponent was a computer, Kramnik used anti-computer strategy that would not work against someone like Anand. This does not take anything away from Kramnik’s achievement in the game below. His play was nothing short of brilliant…

 

Kramnik vs. Anand 2008 preview: A 1996 game played by Kramnik

September 26, 2008: In 1996 Vladimir Kramnik played an exceptionally brilliant game as black verses a very strong opponent named Vassily Ivanchuk. Kramnik used fantastic opening preparation as well as brilliant tactical play to pressure Ivanchuk to error and finally resign. On move 6. Bg5 Ivanchuk initiates a Richter-Rauzer attack which provides the much needed tactical fuel for Kramnik’s fire. Kramnik move 14…Ng4 was a brand new idea that caught his opponent off guard. The move sacrifices the exchange but gives Kramnik long term pressure on the dark squares as well as some initiative to attack with. On 17. g3 Ivanchuk makes a small error which allows black to gain even more initiative. Ivanchuk should have played 17. Qf3. Kramnik’s 19…f5 was paticulary powerful and kept his attack going. On move 27 Kramnik makes a huge error with only five minutes left on his clock. I believe Kramnik should have tried 27…Qe7. To everone’s shock, Ivanchuk played 28. Nd3 which allowed Kramnik to win easily…

 

Anand vs. Kramnik: Backround Information

September 24, 2008: Anand vs. Kramnik should provide the most entertaining chess we have seen in quite some time. Below is a comparison of the achievements of these two chess titans…

 

Countdown until Anand vs. Kramnik

September 22, 2008: In 22 days Viswanathan Anand and Vladimir Kramnik will face off in Bonn, Germany for the title of World Chess Champion. According to my database these two elite chess players have faced each other in 127 official games. On these occasions, Anand beat Kramnik 19 to 15, with 93 draws. Below is Vladimir Kramnik vs. Viswanathan Anand from the so called fide World Championships in Mexico City. Kramnik missed 35 Qh6! after 35…Qd6 36 Qxg5 f6 37 Qg8 Rd8 38 Qh7 Rd7 39 Qh4. After running computer analysis on that line I feel Kramnik would have had much better winning chances…   

 

 

Happy International Chess Day

July 20, 2018

Wishing everyone the best on International Chess Day!

More Fighting Chess from the 2016 Chess Olympiad

September 6, 2016

Today’s featured game from the 2016 Chess Olympiad includes an attack straight out of a chess hustler’s playbook which leads to a victory in just 27 moves. Hats off to Bader Al-Hajiri (Kuwait) and Rodwell Makoto (Zimbabwe) for playing such an entertaining game. Enjoy…

 

[Event “Chess Olympiad”]
[Site “Baku, Azerbaijan”]
[Date “2016.9.5”]
[Round “4”]
[White “Al-Hajiri, Bader”]
[Black “Makoto, Rodwell”]
[Result “0-1”]
[Eco “C48”]
[Annotator “Chris Torres”]

{[ FOUR KNIGHTS’ GAME,C48]}

1.e4 e5

2.Nf3 Nc6

3.Nc3 Nf6

4.Bb5 Bc5

5.Nxe5

 

Position after 5. Nxe5

Position after 5. Nxe5

 

5… O-O {!?}

( 5…Nxe5 6.d4 {The Fork Trick} Bd6 7.f4 (7.dxe5 Bxe5 8.Be3 c6 9.Be2 O-O) 8.  Nc6 8.e5 {The Fork Trick: Part Two} O-O 9.exd6 Re8+
{And oddly enough, black is fine.} )

( 5…Bxf2+ {?!} 6.Kxf2 Nxe5 7.d4 Ng6 ( 7…Nfg4+ 8.Ke1 c6 9.dxe5 d6 10.Be2 Nxe5 11.Bf4
{and white is winning.} ) ( 7…Neg4+ 8.Kg1 c6 9.Be2 d5 10.exd5
O-O 11.dxc6 bxc6 12.h3 Nh6 13.g4 {I’d be happy to play as white from here.}) 8.e5 c6 9.exf6 {!} Qxf6+ 10.Qf3 Qxf3+ 11.gxf3 cxb5 12.Re1+
Kd8 13.Nxb5 {and white is better.} )

6.Nf3

( 6.O-O Nxe5 7.d4 Bd6 8.f4 Nc6 9.e5 Bb4 10.exf6 Qxf6 11.Nd5 Qxd4+ 12.Be3 Qxd1 13.Raxd1
Bd6 14.f5 f6 15.Bf4 Ne5 16.Bxe5 fxe5 17.f6 c6 18.Ne7+ Bxe7 19.fxe7
Re8 20.Bc4+ d5 21.Rxd5 cxd5 22.Bxd5+ Be6 23.Bxe6+ Kh8 24.Rf7
h5 25.Kf2 Kh7 {…1-0, Kulaots Kaido (EST) 2581 – Roiz Michael (ISR) 2652 , Plovdiv 3/22/2012 Ch Europe})

( 6.Bxc6 dxc6 7.Nf3 Nxe4 8.Nxe4 Re8 9.d3 f5 10.O-O fxe4 11.dxe4
Bg4 12.Qe2 )

6… Nd4

7.Nxd4 ( 7.Be2 Nxe2 8.Qxe2 d5 9.d3 Bb4 10.e5
Re8 11.O-O Bg4 {Looks like a fun position for both colors.} )

7… Bxd4

8.Ne2 {?} {Bader Ali-Hajiri is asking for trouble with this move. Better was:}
( 8.O-O Re8 9.Be2 Bxc3 10.dxc3 Nxe4 )

 

Position after 8. Ne2

Position after 8. Ne2

 

8… Bxf2+ {!} {Rodwell Makoto responds with fire.}

9.Kxf2 Nxe4+

10.Ke1 Qf6 {Attacks like these are usually reserved for the street chess hustlers. I’m taking notes.}

11.Rf1 Qh4+

12.Ng3 Re8 {Threatening a discovered check with Nc3 which wins the queen.}

 

Position after 12... Re8

Position after 12… Re8

 

13.Be2 Nxg3 {Not sure I agree with voluntarily trading pieces here. Black is attacking and
therefor should be looking to bring in more force not remove it.}

14.hxg3 Qxg3+

15.Rf2 {Bader Al-Hajiri has done a fine job weathering Rodwell Makoto’s creative attack.}

15… d5

16.Kf1 {?} {Unpinning the rook and bishop by stepping aside is tempting but now when
black’s queen moves to h2 white will be in serious trouble. Much better was:}
( 16.d4 Qh2 17.Bf4 Qg1+ 18.Rf1 Qxg2 19.Rf2 Qg1+ 20.Rf1 Qg2 {draw by repetition.})

 

Position after 16. Kf1

Position after 16. Kf1

 

16… Qh2 {!}

17.Rf3 Bg4 ( 17…d4 18.d3 Bg4 19.c3
Re6 20.Bf4 Qh1+ 21.Kf2 Rxe2+ 22.Qxe2 Qxa1 {is another way to go about the attack.})

18.a4 {?} {Trying to make up for his earlier mistakes, Beder Al-Hajiri will try to get
both of his rooks unified in the third rank. This is a very unusual plan and unfortunately, for Al-Hajiri, not very effective.}

( 18.Re3 {Exchanging the queens and freeing the pieces was a much better plan for white.}
Qh1+ 19.Kf2 Qxd1 20.Bxd1 Bxd1 21.d4 c6 22.c3 f6 23.Bd2 )

18… Re6

19.Raa3 {Bader Al-Hajiri has accomplished his goal behind playing 18. a4.}

 

Position after 19. Raa3

Position after 19. Raa3

 

19… d4 {!} {With one pawn push, Rodwell Makoto takes away his opponent’s chances of placing
a rook into the open e-file. This is a crushing blow to white.}

20.Rh3 {Bader Al-Hajiri tries to resurrect some purpose for his rooks being in the third rank.}

20… Rf6+

21.Rhf3 ( 21.Raf3 Bxh3 22.gxh3 Rg6 23.Ke1 Re8 {is even worse for black.})

21… Re8 {Rodwell Makoto has four pieces left and they are all involved in the attack on Bader Al-Hajiri’s king.}

22.Kf2 Qh4+

23.Kg1 Rfe6

24.g3 Qh5

25.Bf1 {?} {Its impossible to defend against such force with such a disorganized position. However, Rfe3 was the more accurate choice.} ( 25.Rfe3 Bxe2 26.Qxe2 Qxe2 27.Rxe2 Rxe2 28.Rf3 )

 

Position after 25. Bf1

Position after 25. Bf1

 

25… Re1{!} {Just crushing.}

26.Rae3 R8xe3

27.Rxe3 Rxe3 {and Bader Al-Hajiri resigns as his queen is trapped.}
0-1

 

Final Position

Final Position

Hidden Gems Abound at the 2016 Chess Olympiads

September 4, 2016

One of my favorite hobbies is treasure hunting for beautifully instructive chess games during the annual Chess Olympiads. With more than 180 countries each sending their best male and female teams to compete in one event, the Chess Olympiads is a veritable mother load of chess gems. For hunting these chess treasures, I follow along at:

The official site for the 2016 FIDE Chess Olympiads

http://www1.bakuchessolympiad.com//

 

 

Chess Daily News

https://chessdailynews.com

 

ChessGames.com

http://www.chessgames.com/index.html

 

FM Qiu Zhou of Canada

FM Qiyu Zhou of Canada

And to illustrate just the kind of hidden gems I am talking about, I present Sindira Joshi (Nepal) vs. Qiyu Zhou (Canada) from round 1 of the 2016 FIDE Chess Olympiads. Enjoy…

[Event “Chess Olympiad”]
[Site “Baku, Azerbaijan”]
[Date “2016.9.2”]
[Round “1”]
[White “Joshi, Sindira”]
[Black “Zhou, Qiyu”]
[Result “0-1”]
[Eco “C54”]
[Annotator “Chris Torres”]

{[ ITALIAN GAME & HUNGARIAN def.,C54]}

1.e4 e5

2.Nf3 Nc6

3.d4 {The start to the Scotch.}

3… exd4

4.Bc4 Bc5

5.c3 {Transposing to a Giuoco Piano.}

5… Nf6

6.cxd4 Bb4+

7.Bd2 {White could have also chosen the equally popular Moeller Attack by playing Nc3 and gambitting the e-pawn.}

( 7.Nc3 Nxe4 8.O-O Bxc3 9.d5 Bf6 10.Re1 O-O 11.Rxe4 Ne7 12.d6
cxd6 13.Qxd6 Nf5 14.Qd5 d6 15.Bg5 Bxg5 16.Nxg5 Qxg5 17.Qxf7+
{1-0, Euwe Max (NED) – Van Mindeno A, Netherlands 1927 It “AVRO”} )

 

Position after 7. Bd2

Position after 7. Bd2

 

7… Nxe4

8.Bxb4 Nxb4

9.Bxf7+ Kxf7

10.Qb3+ d5 {Discovered by Gioachino Greco, this line is a mere 400 years old.}

 

Position after 10... d5

Position after 10… d5

 

11.Qxb4 {Greco preffered Ne5+ here.}

11… Rf8

12.Nc3 {So far so good for the much lower rated Sindira Joshi. Her chances are about equal here.}
( 12.O-O Ng5 13.Ne5+ Kg8 14.Nc3 c6 15.f4 Nf7 16.Ne2 Nd6 17.Ng3
a5 18.Qa3 a4 19.Qb4 a3 20.bxa3 Nb5 21.a4 Qd6 22.Rab1 Qxb4 23.Rxb4
Nc3 24.Rb3 Nxa4 25.Ne2 Ra6 26.g3 Nb6 27.Nc3 Na4 28.Ne2 Nb6 29.Nc3
Nc4 30.Nxc4 dxc4 31.Rb4 b5 {…1/2-1/2, Schaefer Markus (GER) 2390 – Postny Evgeny (ISR) 2595 , Plovdiv 10/19/2010 Cup European Club})

12… Nxc3 13.bxc3 {?} {A slight innacuracy. Better was Qxc3 as seen in this game:}

( 13.Qxc3 Kg8 14.O-O Qd6 15.Ne5 Bf5 16.Rae1 Rae8 17.Re3 Re6 18.Rfe1
Ref6 19.b4 {1/2-1/2, Danilenko Dmitriy (UKR) 1992 – Pavlov Maxim (UKR) 2327 , Alushta 5/18/2006 Ch Ukraine (1/2 final)})

13… Kg8

14.Ne5 {?} {Another harmless looking mistake. Much better was h4 to prevent Qg5.}

 

Position after 14. Ne5

Position after 14. Ne5

 

14… Qg5 {Here comes trouble.}

15.g3 {?} {As dangerous as it looks, castling is to be preferred here.}

15… Rxf2 {!} {Qiyu Zhou starts her combination with a beautiful rook sacrifice.}

 

Position after 15.... Rxf2

Position after 15…. Rxf2

 

16.Kxf2 Qd2+

17.Kf3 Bh3 {Qiyu Zhou is putting on a tactical clinic.}

 

Position after 15... Bh3

Position after 15… Bh3

 

18.Rad1 {Sindira Joshi seems to be playing the most accurate responses but Qiyu Zhou continues to press her advantage.}

18… Bg2+

19.Kg4 Qe2+

20.Kh4 Bxh1 {Not just to win the exchange but also to set up a vicious fork.}

 

Position after 20... Bxh1

Position after 20… Bxh1

 

21.Rxh1 Qe4+ {and now Sindira Joshi’s only chance is to hope for a rare blunder from Qiyu Zhou.}

22.Kh3 Qxh1 {Qiyu Zhou concludes the prefectly executed 8 move combination.}

23.Qe7 {Sindira Joshi finally has a choice but it is to pick her own poison.}

( 23.Qxb7 Rf8 24.Qxc7 Qf1+ 25.Kh4 Qf6+ 26.Kh3 Qf5+ 27.g4 Qf1+
28.Kg3 Qf4+ 29.Kg2 g5 {seems very unpleasant for white.} ) {%09DB}

23… Qf1+ {Qiyu Zhou grabs the initiative again.}

 

Position after 23... Qf1+

Position after 23… Qf1+

 

24.Kh4 Qf6+ {Qiyu Zhou wisely choses to force an exchange of queens and head into a rook vs. knight endgame.}

25.Qxf6 gxf6

26.Nd7 Kf7

27.Nc5 b6

28.Nd3 Re8

29.Nf4 {Hats off to Sindira Joshi for continueing to play on and give us a chance to study good endgame technique.}

 

Position after 29. Nf4

Position after 29. Nf4

 

29… c6

30.Kg4 Re3

31.Kf5 {Nothing can be done to save white’s queenside pawns from a Qiyu Zhou’s rampaging rook.}

31… Rxc3

32.Nh5 Rc2

33.h4 Rxa2

34.Kf4 a5

35.Ke3 b5

36.Nf4 a4

37.Nd3 a3

38.Nb4 Rb2 {Sindira Joshi resigns as there is no hope left for white.} 0-1

 

Final Position

Final Position

Final Reminder to Register Your Child for the SPFNO Chess Championship

February 22, 2016

Dear Fellow Chess Parents,

 

Do children who play competitive chess develop skills that will give them advantages over their non-chess peers? 

 

Yes, I certainly believe so!

 

My name is Chris Torres and I am the Organizer for the Susan Polgar Foundation’s National Open for Girls and Boys. If you sign your child up right now, I can promise your family a very special kind of tournament experience perhaps unlike any other you have ever attended.

 

First of all, by signing your child up for the 2016 SPFNO, you are guaranteeing your child the opportunity to meet and hang out with the former World Champion Grandmaster Susan Polgar.

SPNO 2015 u16u18boys

But that’s only the beginning of the fun they’ll have when they start playing chess with us!

 

  • The first place winner in each championship section:

*Qualifies for the Prominent Susan Polgar National Invitational for Girls (Girls sections only).

*Qualifies for the 2016 FIDE World Youth Chess Championship.*

*Wins $100,000 in prizes and scholarships to Webster University (U16/18 sections).

SPNO 2015 team

 

  • The SPFNO will take place at a 34,200 square foot facility which we will not be sharing with any other activities. This means our players can be conformably spread out and parents have plenty of space to mingle while waiting for their kids to finish games.

 

  • At the SPFNO your family will be treated to free parking and offered a fine selection of affordable food cooked in a real restraint on site.

 

  • The SPFNO has its own state-of-the-art website which will keep you up to date on tournament results and pairings without requiring your participation in a stampede to view the wall charts.

 

 

The Fun of Watching Your Child Learn and Grow through Chess

 

Part of the fun of the SPFNO is watching your child meet and make friends with other youngsters who love chess as much as they do. As a competitor in the SPFNO your child will get to participate in a chess tournament attended by many of the best chess players their age in the U.S.A.

SPFNO 2015 u8boys

Another part – and an important one – is having your child get his/her games analyzed by brilliant players such as Grandmaster Daniel Naroditsky who will be analyzing games for free at the SPFNO.

analysis

At the SPFNO your child will be placed in an environment where chess is considered cool and where being a high achiever is the norm. Basically, we are providing the ideal conditions for your child to learn and grow through chess.

 

The Excitement of Shaping the Future through Chess

 

For some families, the excitement of joining the SPFNO is reason enough to attend. For other families, it will be because of the enormous learning opportunity the SPFNO creates. For me, it is knowing that we, as parents, are doing something to make the world a better place. I honestly believe that many of our future “thought leaders” will be present at tournaments like the SPFNO.

 

Also, The SPFNO is an official qualifying event for the FIDE World Youth Chess Championships. What could be more exciting than earning the chance to compete against the best chess players in the world?!

 

By signing our own kids up for such events, I believe we are shaping the future through chess. Now that’s real exciting!

 

Come Play Chess with Us

 

So join the Torres Chess and Music Academy and the Susan Polgar Foundation for the fun of it, the learning opportunities and the excitement of shaping the future. The price goes up on Wednesday so join today!

 

Sincerely,

Chris Torres

Chess Dad

Magnus Carlsen wins rapid chess world title

October 13, 2015

Norwegian chess superstar Magnus Carlsen has been crowned the world champion in rapid chess once again, after a thrilling three day defence of last year’s title in Berlin….

Read the full article via http://ift.tt/1OvlMqm

MSJE Wins the Yes2Chess International School Team Championship in London!

June 25, 2015

The kids from Mission San Jose Elementary School are headed home from London with a huge trophy for winning a prestigious international school team championship. This truly global chess tournament was organized by the UK based Yes2Chess and sponsored by Barclays. In order to represent the United States, Team MSJE first had to defeat the other top chess programs from the United States in the Yes2Chess National Championship. Once MSJE won there, our players were awarded with an all expenses paid trip to London for the International stage of the event.

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Team USA from MSJE: (left to right) Annapoorni Meiyappan, Leo Jiang, Kevin Pan, David Pan, and Rishith Susarla

In London, the kids from MSJE made quick work of the top schools from Sweden, Spain and Norway. Next, the small school from Fremont, California was paired against the Portuguese champions in the Grand Final. MSJE did the USA proud by winning the Grand Final with a score of 4.5 – 1.5

Results from the 2015 Yes2Chess International Challenge Grand Finals

Results from the 2015 Yes2Chess International Challenge Grand Finals

Many chess enthusiasts are likely unaware that the USA wouldn’t have been victorious if not for the amazing efforts of  one Chess Mom, Hui Wang. I first met Hui at the Fremont Summer Chess Camp in 2011 and she has continually impressed me since then with her devotion to her children and chess. Behind every great chess team I have ever coached for is a parent or two who really are the unsung heroes. Parents like Hui and are a huge factor in Mission San Jose Elementary School’s and the United State’s chess success. At MSJE, this parent tradition extends back decades all the way to when Head Coach and Founder Joe Lonsdale started the group.

Finalists from eight different countries enjoying London together.

Yes2Chess finalists from eight different countries enjoying London together.

Of course it was the kids themselves who won the event. Team USA from MSJE was comprised of David Pan, Rishith Susarla, Kevin Pan, Annapoorni Meiyappan and Leo Jiang. Each of these children are chess stars in their own right and together they proved to be an unconquerable force with an overall record in the international stage of 16.5 wins out of a possible 20!

Kevin Pan hanging out with Grandmaster David Howell after Kevin defeated the GM in a simul!

Kevin Pan hanging out with Grandmaster David Howell after Kevin defeated the GM in a simul!

The MSJE Fremont Summer Chess Camp starts on Monday June 29th. For more details and to sign up for the camp, please visit: http://chessandmusic.com/aboutus/

MSJE Chess Team Wins Two National Chess Championships in One Month(by Coach Joe)

June 11, 2015

Team MSJE after winning the Yes2Chess National Championship!

Team MSJE after winning the Yes2Chess National Championship!

There were two elementary school chess team championships held in the United States in May 2015. The weekend of May 9th and 10th the USCF (United States Chess Federation) held its annual Elementary school chess championship at the Grand Old Opry Hotel in Nashville TN.   This is the “official” chess championship and for the second time in three years (also 2013) and the third time seven years (also 2009) MSJE (Mission San Jose Elementary of Fremont, CA) won the National Elementary School Chess Championship. In the USCF Championship schools enter as many players as they want in the championship section of the Nashville tournament. Over 2300 students and 600 teams competed in the tournament in Nashville.

There was also a Yes2Chess national elementary school chess championship held in May. Yes2Chess is a not for profit organization based in the UK that is dedicated to increasing the use of chess in schools. The Yes2Chess Championship consists of five player teams usually playing over the internet. It is not as prestigious as the USCF championship, but instead of playing for a trophy the players are playing for an all-expenses paid trip to London to be the US representative and compete with teams from seven other countries for the international championship. ( http://en.chessbase.com/post/barclaycard-yes2chess-tournament-2015 )

The Yes2chess nationals were designed to come down to four teams the plan was to have an online playoff on the day after Memorial Day. The four teams were Nest A with an average rating of 1537, Nest B, 1655, and IS 318 with an average rating of 1758. Both Nest teams and IS 318 were from New York City. The fourth team was MSJE with an average rating of 1771. (Note Kavya played  on our B team and was not eligible to play in these finals.) Nest and IS 318 have both won USCF National titles.   They are part of the very strong New York City scholastic chess program.  The New York teams played at the famous Marshall Chess club in Manhattan. We played in Don Pans’ (David’s dad) home.

In the first round we were paired against IS 318. We expected, based on ratings, that they would be our main competition. We got off to a bad start and lost on board four and five. Boards 1-3 looked even with maybe an advantage on board 2. Board three then draws based on a repetition of position. We now need to win boards one and two or lose our first match. It is almost impossible to win a four team round robin if one losses the first round.

This is a unique feature of team match chess. On board one David Pan had four pawns and a knight vs. four pawns and a bishop. This would have almost certainly been a draw except for the pressure put on David by the fact that the team had to have a win.   David got his king to the center and won several pawns and the game. Rishith pushed home his advantage and we get the last two points for a 2 ½ to 2 ½ draw.

Meanwhile Nest B beats Nest A 4-1.   We are paired with Nest A in round two.   We expect that MSJE and IS 318 will win our last two matches and it will come down to tie-breaks, which is the total points scored. We get off to a good start against Nest A. Leo wins quickly on board 5. Rishith and Kevin win on boards two and three. That assures that we win the match. Annapoorni losses a tough game on board 4, and David draws on board one.   This gives us a 3 ½ to 1 ½ victory, but it is somewhat discouraging as Nest B beat Nest A 4-1. I was concerned that if IS 318 could beat Nest A 5-0 they would beat us on tie breaks.

The result of the round two Nest B versus IS 318 match is a 4-1 win by Nest B! This is a shocker. We thought IS 318 was our major competition, but now Nest B has two wins and we have a win and a draw. Also they have scored 8 points against the two teams that we scored six points.

It all comes down to the last match Nest B versus MSJE. If Nest B wins or draws the match, they go to London. If we beat Nest B we go to London.

Round three gets off to a good start.   We are looking very good on board one, where David Pan has a strong position. Also both Annapoorni on board 4 and Leo on board 5 are ahead material and seem certain to win. Rishith seems to be in a tough fight in board two. David wins giving us the first points. Leo is moving his rook to take a knight and announce checkmate on board five when the rook stops short of the knight and his opponent gets a simple checkmate. Leo is devastated the position was very simple and the only move was checkmate. The rules on mouse errors are very clear. The move and the loss stand.

Shortly after this happens Annapoorni wins on board four. Then on board two the opponent of Rishith has a mouse error and goes from a very strong position to a lost position. Rishith pushes home the win and we have a victory and a trip to London. Kevin is way ahead on board two. We try to keep the celebrating to a minimum until Kevin checkmates his opponent. Kevin wins and we win the last match 4-1.

The MSJE Chess team is going to London!

 

Joe Lonsdale is a legendary chess coach who brings decades of teaching experience to our camp daily.

Joe Lonsdale is a legendary chess coach who brings decades of teaching experience to our camp daily.

Your child can come and train with the MSJE Chess Team this summer at the Fremont Summer Chess Camp. Sign up Today!

 

Memorial Weekend Sales Event for the Fremont Summer Chess Camp

May 18, 2015
Fremont Summer Chess Camp

Fremont Summer Chess Camp

Summer is rapidly approaching and that means it’s almost time for the annual Fremont Summer Chess Camp at Mission San Jose Elementary School in Fremont, California. Our summer chess camp features coaches with decades of chess teaching experience who annually create a summer camp that is fun, competitive and educational.  All camp attendees will receive the best chess training available and take part in USCF rated tournament with awards given at the end of each week. So why not kick your summer off by saving 10% off of tuition and receiving one of several “thank you” gifts just for signing your child up for the chess camp hosted by the school that just won the 2015 USCF National Elementary Chess Championships?

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The TCAMA’s Memorial Weekend Sales Event is the best time to register your child for the Fremont Summer Chess Camp.

  • Sign up for one week by May 25th and your child will receive a free private lesson with a TCAMA chess coach prior to the start of the chess camp.
  • Sign up for two weeks of camp and you will also get a copy of Chess Tactics for Champions by our friend Grandmaster Susan Polgar at your child’s free private lesson.
  • Finally, if you sign your child up for three or more weeks of the Fremont Summer Chess Camp, he/she will receive the free lesson, book and a deluxe triple weighted set of tournament chess pieces!

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Of course, it’s really about giving your child the best chess education possible this summer. That is why the TCAMA only uses the best and most proven local chess coaches at our Fremont Summer Chess Camp. This summer, we proudly are offering classes with:

*IM Emory Tate – Weibel Coach

*NM Eric Schiller PhD. – famous chess author

*Francisco Anchondo – Weibel Coach

*Joe LonsdaleHead Coach of the National Champions at MSJE!

*James Paquette – Director of Instruction for the TCAMA

*Tans Hylkema – TCAMA’s early childhood specialist

*Chris Torres – President of the Torres Chess and Music Academy

Even better, because all of these chess coaches work full time in the Bay Area, your child can continue to seek guidance from our highly accomplished staff at all of the big scholastic tournaments held in Northern California.

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Join us at the Fremont Summer Chess Camp located at Mission San Jose Elementary School  in Fremont from June 29th through July 23rd. Remember to sign up by May 25th in order to receive a 10% discount and claim a special “thank you gift” for your child. For more details and to register online, please visit www.ChessAndMusic.com and I’ll see you at chess camp.

 

Sincerely,

Chris Torres

President of the Torres Chess and Music Academy

Coach for the 2015 National Elementary Chess Champions at Mission San Jose Elementary School

 

P.S. Don’t forget to be sociable and share this incredible offer with your friends.


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