Mechanics' Institute Chess Club Newsletter #364
I see people making a mistake, not being serious at age 14. You can have a job at any point in your life, but you can't go back and study chess.
Alex Shabalov in an interview with Betsy Dynako at  Chess Life Online ttp:// .There he notes that his current chess strength came through hard work between the ages of 12-14. He wishes he worked even harder then because he sees 12-14 as the key age for chess improvement.

1) Mechanics' Institute Chess Club News
2) Cal Chess Masters by Michael Aigner
3) Here and There
4) Upcoming Events

1) Mechanics' Institute Chess Club News
The San Francisco Mechanics' 15 match undefeated streak in the US Chess League ended against Seattle last week..

Seattle Sluggers

San Francisco Mechanics
GM Gregory Serper: 2574 1.0
IM Josh Friedel: 2535
IM Georgi Orlov: 2574
IM David Pruess: 2452
FM John Readey: 2326 0.0
IM John Donaldson: 2460
Joshua Sinanan: 2083 1.0
Daniel Naroditsky: 2076
Avg Rating: 2389             

Avg Rating: 2381
Seattle Total -------
------- San Francisco Total
John Readey - John Donaldson 
English A37
Seattle vs San Francisco (4) 2007
1.Nf3 c5 2.c4 Nc6 3.g3 g6 4.Bg2 Bg7 5.Nc3 e5 6.a3 a5

This stops b4 at all costs but White can try to benefit from not having had to play Rb1.  The alternative 6...Nge7 7.b4 d5 is critical 8.bxc5 0–0 9.0–0 dxc4 10.Rb1 Na5 11.d3 is a probably an important sequence to evaluate the effectiveness of 7....d5.

7.0–0 d6 8.d3 Nge7 9.Ne1

9.Rb1 0–0 10.Bd2 Rb8 11.Ne1 Be6 12.Nc2 d5 13.cxd5 Nxd5 14.Nxd5 Bxd5 15.Bxd5 Qxd5 16.b4 cxb4 17.axb4 b6 Altounian-Yermolinsky, US (ch) 2004  offers Black no difficulties.


9...0–0 10.Nc2 Be6 11.Ne3 f5 is another way to handle this variation.

10.Nc2 d5 11.cxd5 Nxd5 12.Ne3 Nde7 13.Ne4 b6 14.Ng5
Perhaps a more challenging idea is Gregory Kaidanov's 14.Nc4 0–0 15.Bg5 f6 16.Be3 with Qa4, Rfc1 and Rab1 to follow. White tries to get in b2-b4 with tactics.; If 14.Qa4 Black can choose between the solid 14...Rc8 and the more aggressive 14...0–0 15.Nxc5 bxc5 16.Bxc6 Nxc6 17.Qxc6 Rc8 18.Qa4 f5. 

14...Bd7 15.Bd2
15.Nc4 0–0 16.f4 h6 17.Nf3 exf4 18.Bxf4 Be6 19.Rc1 Nd5 was fine for Black in Yermolinsky-Wedberg, NY 1991.

15...0–0 16.Rb1 a4

16...Rb8 was possible with a likely transposition to known positions but it didn't seem necessary here.

17.Nc4 h6
17...b5 18.Nd6 f6 was a different approach.

18.Ne4 Be6

To clamp down on f4 breaks.


19.f4 Bxc4 20.dxc4 f5 21.Nf2 e4 should be very nice for Black.

19...Rb8 20.Qxa4

20.Bxc6 Nxc6 21.Qxa4 Nd4 22.Qd1 b5 23.Ne3 and now either 23...Bb3 or 23......Nb3 offers Black excellent compensation for the pawn. Critical is 20.Nxa4 b5 21.Nxc5 bxc4 22.Nxe6 fxe6 23.dxc4  At first glance White seems to be doing very well here but after 23...Rb7! 24.Be3 Rd7 followed by ...Nd4 I prefer Black though matters are not so clear.

20...Nd4 21.Qd1 b5 22.Ne3 Bb3

The immediate 22...f5 was interesting as  23.f4?? loses a piece to 23...b4. 22...Nb3 was also quite reasonable. Clearly Black has enough for the pawn,

23.Qe1 f5 24.f4 exf4 25.gxf4 b4

To open the c-file.

26.axb4 cxb4 27.Ncd1 Qb6 28.Kh1 Rfc8 29.Rc1 Rxc1 30.Bxc1 Qc5 31.Bd2 Bf7
Black's plan is ...Nb3 and ...Ne7-c6-d4. Here John decided to return the pawn to activate his pieces. This is especially understandable as he was getting very low on time.

32.Nc4 Bxc4 33.dxc4 Qxc4 34.e4

Threatening e5 activating his Bishop and killing mine.

34...fxe4 35.Qxe4 Qf7 36.Ne3 Kh7 37.Ng4 Nef5

Black's more cohesive position is much easier to play with both sides short of time. The time control was G/75 plus a 30 second increment each move.

38.Ne5 Qb3 39.Bc1 Re8 40.Re1 Re7 41.Qd5 Qc2 42.Be4 Qf2 43.Rd1
43.Nd3 Qh4 44.Rg1 Qh3 45.Bxf5 Nxf5 46.Ne5 Bxe5 47.fxe5 Nh4  (with ...Qf3+ threatened) 48.Rd1 g5 49.Qe4+ Ng6 and the e-pawn falls.

43...Bxe5 44.fxe5 Qh4?

44...Ne2 45.Bxf5 Qxf5 was the right follow up.

45.Bxf5 Nxf5 46.Bd2 Ng3+ 47.Kg2 Ne4 48.Be1?
48.Rf1 would have drawn.


Now Black is winning again.

49.Bg3 Qe2+ 50.Kg1 Nxg3 51.hxg3 Qxb2 52.e6 Qe2 53.Rf1 Qxe6 54.Qxe6 Rxe6 55.Rf7+ Kg8 56.Rb7 Re4 57.Kf2 h5 58.Kf3 Rg4 59.Kf2 Kf8 60.Kf3 Ke8 61.Kf2 Kd8 62.Kf3 Kc8 63.Rb5 Kc7 64.Kf2 Kc6 65.Rb8 Kc5 
GM Patrick Wolff, IM John Donaldson, NM Sam Shankland and Expert Daniel Naroditsky will represent the Mechanics' this evening against the Tennessee Tempo starting at 5:30 pm. Spectators are welcome.
There was plenty of excitement last night in round eight of the Ben Gross Tuesday Night Marathon. Tournament leader SM Craig Mar was a half point ahead of IM Ricardo DeGuzman and for most of the game he was winning but Ricardo came up with an incredible save with both flags hanging. He won a Rook down in an ending, advancing his b-pawn while White's Rook on h3 was imprisoned.

Craig Mar - Ricardo DeGuzman
Kings Indian E97
Ben Gross Tuesday Night Marathon San Francisco (8) 2007
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.Nf3 0–0 6.Be3 Bg4 7.Be2 Nc6 8.0–0 e5 9.d5 Ne7 10.c5 Bxf3 11.Bxf3 Ne8 12.cxd6 Nxd6 13.Be2 f5 14.f3 Rf7 15.Rc1 f4 16.Bf2 g5 17.Qc2 Ng6 18.Nb5 Bf8 19.Qb3 Nxb5 20.Qxb5 Bd6 21.Qxb7 Rb8 22.Qc6 Rxb2 23.Rc2 Rb6 24.Bxb6 axb6 25.Bb5 Kf8 26.Rc4 Kg7 27.Ra4 g4 28.Qe8 Qh4 29.Qe6 gxf3 30.gxf3 Rf6 31.Qg4 h5 32.Qg2 Rf8 33.Bd7 Kh6 34.Be6 Qf6 35.Rc4 b5 36.Rc2 Ra8 37.Kh1 Ra3 38.Bf5 Nh4 39.Qh3 Rd3 40.Rg1 Be7 41.Rc6 Bd6 42.Qxh4 Qxh4 43.Rg6+ Kh7 44.Rg4+ Kh6 45.Rxh4 Rd1+ 46.Kg2 Rd2+ 47.Kf1 Kg5 48.Rh3 Rxa2 and ... 0–1 Unfortunately the rest of the score is not available as both players were blitzing.
Going into the final round the leaders are: 1-2. IM DeGuzman and Victor Ossipov  6.5/8; 3-6. SM Mar, NM Igor Margulis, Romulo Fuentes, and Daniel Naroditsky 6.
The past month the Mechanics' held its annual FIDE rating tournament for Masters and Experts and the final result was quite impressive. Expert Kimani Stancil won with 8 from 8 with one unplayed game. 9-year-old Nicholas Nip should gain a lot of USCF and FIDE rating points for his second place finish.
1. Kimani Stancil 8/8
2. Nicholas Nip 6.5
3. NM Michael Pearson 6
4. NM Igor Margulis 5
5. NM Paul Gallegos 3.5
6. Igor Traub 3/8
=7. Vadim Smelansky, Jorge Ortega , Felix Rudyak 3/9 
10. Murray Newcomb .5
All players played 9 games except Stancil and Traub.
Book and equipment donations to the Mechanics' are always welcome. All donations to the Mechanics' are tax deductible due to the M.I.'s 501(c) (3) nonprofit status. If you have any chess books or equipment that have been lying around unused for some time consider donating to the Mechanics'. You will not only get a tax write off but also the satisfaction of seeing things put to good use.
3) Cal Chess Masters by Michael Aigner
Hello Masters and eligible Juniors,

This email is just a reminder that the CalChess Masters will take place this coming weekend at the
Mechanics' Institute in San Francisco.  The tournament has received 14 entries as of Monday 9/24
and several additional players have expressed interest.  With a first place prize of $700, I would
not be surprised to see a few IMs and even possibly a GM show up.  You can still enter on site for
$60 between 9:00-9:45 on Saturday morning.
The CalChess Masters will be a four round swiss, 30/90 G/60, to be held at the Mechanics'
Institute on September 29-30.  Thanks to the financial support of CalChess and a suitable venue at
the Mechanics' Institute, the prize fund of $2200 will be fully guaranteed.  FIDE rated! 

This tournament is open to all players rated over 2200, former masters who are currently over
2000, foreign players with FIDE ratings over 2200 and juniors (under 21) who are rated over 2000.
The September USCF rating list will be used (


advance entries as of Monday 9/24:

1. NM Yap, Nicolas A 2300 (junior)
2. WIM Tuvshintugs, Batchmeg 2288
3. NM Aigner, Michael 2254
4. NM Frankle, Jonathan 2249
5. NM Von Krogh, Chris 2243
6. FM Keatinge-clay, Adrian 2239
7. Naroditsky, Daniel 2170 (junior)
8. Mackenzie, Dana N 2156
9. Stancil, Kimani A 2115
10. Snyder, Larry 2077
11. Nip, Nicholas 2029 (junior)
12. Agarwal, Rohan 2019 (junior)
13. Kislik, Erik Andre 2011 (junior)
14. Jones, James E 2000

If you have any further questions, please contact organizer Richard Koepcke at 650-964-2640 or by
email at <>.

3) Here and There
Steven Krasnov and Art Marthinsen are tied for first with 3 from 3 in the six round Berkeley Chess Club Sunday Marathon. For complete standings go to .
Mechanics' members Josh Friedel and David Pruess have traveled to Miami and start play today in a big nine round open that includes US Champion Alex Shabalov and Hikaru Nakamura. GM norm possibilities are advertised.
Congratulations to Val Zemitis and his wife Sibylle who celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary last Sunday. Val is keeping busy in retirement and recently co edited a book on the Latvian women player Milda Lauberte (3rd at the womens world championship in Stockholm in 1938).
The Western States Open in Reno is right around the corner. October 12-14 will be the 25th anniversary and it will be a very strong (many GMs ) and large (likely over 400 players) tournament. Don't miss it! Details below under upcoming events.
4) Upcoming Events
MI Events
J.J. Dolan Memorial - October 20th
Carroll Capps Memorial - November 3rd and 4th
Pierre Saint-Amant Memorial - November 17th
Jim Hurt Amateur - December 1st and 2nd
Guthrie McClain - December 8th

go for more information 

Northern California
Sept. 29-30   CALCHESS MASTERS   GPP: 40   California Northern

4SS, 30/90, G/1 Mechanics Institute, 57 Post Street, San Francisco. $$ G: 2,200. $700-500-300-200, U2300 $300-200. Open to all players over 2200, over 2000 having once had a rating over 2200, or under 21 and over 2000. EF: $50 postmarked by 9/24, $60 on site, GMs free. USCF and CalChess membership required, CalChess waived if living outside of Northern California. RDS.: 10:00-3:30, 10:00-3:30. One 1/2 point bye allowed for any round (bye in rounds 3 or 4 must be requested before rd. 1 starts). Bring clocks, equipment provided. INFO: Richard Koepcke 650-964-2640. Ent: CalChess, P.O. Box 1432, Mountain View, CA 94042. No phone entries. FIDE Rated.

Oct. 6   California Classic Championship

4SS G/60. 3003 Scott Blvd., Santa Clara, CA 95054. EF: $39, Juniors $35. $16 more after 10/2, $2 Cal Chess Discount, $4 discount if combined with 11/10 Classic. $850 b/36: Open 200-100 U2000 50, Reserve: 200-100 U1600 50, U1400 50, U1200 50, U1000 50. Reg: Sat 9:00-9:30 AM, Rds: 10:00-12:00, lunch, 12:30-2:30 PM, 2:40-4:40 PM, 4:55-6:55 PM. Ent: Salman Azhar, 1551 Garvey Pl. San Jose, CA 95132. Payable to Salman Azhar or paypal to Info: NS NC W
Oct. 27   Exchange Bank Fall Classic  

4-SS, G/1. Exchange Bank, Andrew J. Shepard Building, 444 Aviation Blvd., Santa Rosa, CA. $$ GTD: $1,000. 3 Sections: Open, open to all: $$ 425: $250-175. Reserve, open to 1500-1899. $$ 325: $200-125. Booster, open to U1500. $$ 250: $150-100. All EF: $35 if rec’d. by 10/20. $40 at site. Reg.: 8:30-9:30. Rds.: 10-12:30-3-5:30. Contact: Mike Goodall (415) 491-1269 or Paul Stagnoli (707) 539-6368. Unrated must play in Open Section; No phone nor e-mail entries. Bring equipment, none provided. NS, NC, W. FIDE

Nov. 10   California Classic Championship 

4SS G/60. 3003 Scott Blvd., Santa Clara, CA 95054. EF: $39, Juniors $35. $16 more after 11/6, $2 Cal Chess Discount, $4 discount if combined with 10/6 Classic. $850 b/36: Open 200-100 U2000 50, Reserve: 200-100 U1600 50, U1400 50, U1200 50, U1000 50. Reg: Sat 9:00-9:30 AM, Rds: 10:00-12:00, lunch, 12:30-2:30 PM, 2:40-4:40 PM, 4:55-6:55 PM. Ent: Salman Azhar, 1551 Garvey Pl. San Jose, CA 95132. Payable to Salman Azhar or paypal to Info: NS NC W

Heritage Event!
An American Classic!
  GPP: 200 Enhanced   Nevada
6SS, 40/2, 20/1, SD/30. Sands Regency Hotel/Casino, 345 N. Arlington Ave., Reno, NV 89501. 1-800-648-3553 or (775) 348-2200. $$ 46,000 b/450, Gtd. $$ 29,850: $4,000-2,500-1,500-1,200-1,000-900-800-700-600-500 in Open Section plus 1/2 of all other prizes. 7 Sections: OPEN: EF: GMs & IMs free, Masters $123, (2000-2199)-$201, (1999-below)-$301. $$ Prizes 1-10 listed above, (2400-2499) $1,000, (2300-2399) $1,000-600-400, (2299-below) $1,000-600-400. If a tie for first overall then two (G/10) playoff for $100 from prize fund. (Note: GM/IM w/free entry not eligible for class prizes 2499 and below, may elect to pay entry fee and become eligible). EXPERT: (2000-2199) EF: $122. $$ 2,000-1,000-500-400-300-200-200-(under 2100)-$600. ”A” Sec. (1800-1999): EF: $121, $$ 1,800-900-500-400-300-200-200-200-200-200. ”B” Sec. (1600-1799): EF: $120, $$ 1,600-800-500-400-300-200-200-200-200-200. “C” Sec. (1400-1599): EF: $119, $$ 1,400-700- 500-400-300-200-200-100-100-100. “D” Sec. (1200-1399): EF: $118, $$ 1,200-600-500-400-300-200-200-100-100-100. ”E” Sec. (1199-below): EF: $60 (“E” Sect. entries count as 1/2 paid player toward prize fund), $$ 600-400-300-200-200-100-100-100-100-100. (Unrated Players) EF: Free + must join USCF or increase membership for one additional year thru this tournament ($49 adults, $25 juniors). Prizes: Top unrated in “D” & “E” sections wins one yr. USCF membership plus trophy. Note: Adult unrated will be put in “D” Sect., Junior unrated in “E”, unless requested to play up. Seniors additional prizes (65/over): $$ 400-200-100. (Srs. not eligible: provisionally rated, unrated, & masters); Club Championship: $$ 1,000-500-300-200 decided by total score of 10 (and only 10) players from one club or area (not eligible – GMs, IMs, “E”Sec., or unrated). Trophies to top three (A-E Sections). ALL: EF: $11 more if postmarked after 9/22 and $22 more if postmarked after 10/6 or at site. Do not mail after 10/6 or email after 10/9. $20 off EF to Sr. 65/over and Jrs. 19/under. Players may play up. Unrated players not eligible for cash prizes except Open 1-10. Provisionally rated players may win up to 50% of first place money except Open Section 1-10. CCA ratings may be used. Note pairings not changed for color alteration unless three in a row or a plus three and if the unlikely situation occurs three colors in a row may be assigned. Reg.: (10/11) 5-9 pm, (10/12) 8:30-10 am. Rds.: 12-7, 10-6, 9:30-4. Byes available any round (two byes max.) if requested before first round. SIDE EVENTS: Wed. (10/10) 7 pm clock simul, [40/2, G/1] (including an analysis of YOUR game on the next day [Thursday] at 2 pm!), either GM Larry Evans or IM John Donaldson (early entries may request exhibitor, later entries may be assigned), $30 (a great value!). Thursday (10/11) 6-7:30 pm, GM Larry Evans lecture- Free, 7:30 pm, Simul (only $15!) GM Walter Browne, 7:30 pm, Blitz (5 min.)Tourney ($15). Sat. 10/13 (3-4:30 pm), GM Larry Evans Clinic (Game/Position Analysis)- Free. Sun. (10/14) Quick Tourney (G/25), 5 rd. Swiss ($15) [12 (Noon)-5pm] 80% of entries returned as prizes. ENT: Make checks payable and send to: SANDS REGENCY (address above) HR: $39! (Sun-Thurs) & $59 (Fri-Sat) + 13.5% tax. (mention CHE1011 & by 9/29 to guarantee room rates.) INFO: Jerry Weikel, (775) 747-1405, or website: (also go here to verify entry). FIDE .W

October 19-21
5th Annual Western Pacific Open
5-SS, 3-day 40/2, SD/1, 2-day rds. 1-2 G/75 then merges. 
LAX Hilton, 5711 W Century Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90045. 
$$10,000 b/200, 50% of each prize guaranteed.
In 3 sections: 
Open: 1600-1000-800-400-200, U2400 300-200, U2200 700-500-300. EF: $83 if received by 10/18, $95 door. 
Premier (U2000): $$ 700-500-300-100, U1800 400-200-150, U1600 400-200-150. EF: $83 if received by 10/18, $95 door. 
Amateur (U1400/Unrated): $$400-200-100, U1200 100, Unr 100, unrated may win unrated prize only. EF: $67 if received by 10/18, $80 door.   
All: $25 Best Game prize, all sections eligible. One half point bye if requested with entry, rds 4-5 cannot be revoked. SCCF membership req. of S. Cal. res., $14 reg, $9 junior. No checks or credit card entries at door.
Reg: 5:30-6:30 p.m. 10/19, 9-10 a.m. 10/20. 
Rds: 3-day 7 p.m., 11-5:30, 10-4:30. 2-day: 10:30-1:30 (G/75), then merges. 
HR: $104, (310) 410-4000. Be sure to mention Western Chess. Parking $9/day. 
Info: Web site:
Ent: SCCF, c/o John Hillery, 835 N. Wilton Pl. #1, Los Angeles CA 90038. On-line entry:
NS. NC. F. GP: 40. State Championship Qualifier


Dec 8, 2006   3rd Annual Igor Ivanov Memeorial.

GPP 15

5SS, G/60, 1st round is G/45, St. George Chess Club Tournament, 354 E. 600 S. #301, St George, Utah 84770, JUST 120 MILES NORTH OF LAS VEGAS. EF:$35.  GMs and IMs free entry. $150 appearance stipend for IMs and GMs; and free room and Lunch.  Prize fund: $1200 absolutely guaranteed. $400-225-125, other distributed as class prizes Reg: Friday Dec. 7th, 6:30pm- 7:30pm, Saturday Dec. 9, 8:00am to 8:45am.  Please register in advance if Possible.  Rds: 1st round 9:00am. Next rounds ASAP.  Byes must be submitted before the 2nd round for a half point.  Award Ceremony: there will be an Awards Ceremony immediately after the last round.  All cash prizes are unconditionally
guaranteed.  What to bring: chess clocks, pen.  Please turn cell phones off.  
Ent:  St. George Chess Center, the same address as given above.  You can also
register and have questions answered at: or call Alan Crooks at1-888-GO-CHESS