Mechanics Institute Chess Room Newsletter #174

"In opposite colored Bishop endings when both sides have weak pawns one should not try for a big material advantage."

   Mikhail Botvinnik

This Saturday the Mechanics' Institute will be hosting the Bob Burger Open (5 rounds at G/45) starting at 10 am.

1) University of Texas at Dallas wins Pan Am Championship
2) Winter Tuesday Night Marathon
3) US Champion Alex Shabalov interviewed in Pittsburgh Gazette
4) Games of IM William Martz
5) Here and There 
6) Upcoming Events

1) University of Texas at Dallas wins Pan Am Championship

The 2003 Pan Am Intercollegiate Team Championship held, December 27-30 at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Miami, was won by the University of Texas at Dallas, headed by GM Marcin Kaminski, IM Dmitri Schneider, IM Magesh Chandran and IM Amon Simutowe. They defeated favored University of Maryland at Baltimore County (GM Alexander Onischuk, GM Pavel Blehm, IM Eugene Perelshteyn and IM Pascal Charbonneau) 2.5-1.5 in the critical match). Berkeley and Stanford didn't send teams.

Top Teams:

1st:University of Texas, Dallas A-Team, 5.5 points
2nd:University of Maryland, Baltimore County A-Team, 5.0 points
3rd:University of Texas, Dallas B-Team, 5.0 points
4th:Miami-Dade College, 4.5 points
5th:Brooklyn College A-Team, 4.0 points
5th:(6th) University of Maryland, Baltimore County B-Team, 4.0 points
5th:(7th) University of Toronto A-Team, 4.0 points
5th:(8th) Pontifica Universidad Catolica, 4.0 points
5th:(9th) Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 4.0 points
10th: Princeton University, 3.5 points.

Individual Award Winners:

1st Board 1: GM Leonil Yudasin-(Brooklyn College A-Team)
1st Board 2: Vladimir Pechenkin-(Toronto A-Team)
1st Board 3: Eugene Perelshtein-(UMBC A-Team)
1st Board 4: Jeff Hawel-(Western Ontario B-Team)
Top Alternate: Michal Kujovic-(UTD B-Team)

Organizers of the 2003 Pan Am Intercollegiate Chess Championship was Arden and Suzie Dilley and Chief TD was Dr. Ira Lee Riddle.

2) Winter Tuesday Night Marathon

IM Walter Shipman, FM Frank Thornally and NMs Andy Lee and Egle Morkunaite are among the leaders with perfect scores after two rounds, but 14-year-old NM Nicolas Yap lost to veteran Ben Gross. It's still possible to enter the 74-player event with byes for the first two rounds of the eight round tournament.

3) US Champion Alex Shabalov interviewed in Pittsburgh Gazette

US CHAMPION ALEX Shabalov was interviewed by Jan Ackerman for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on January 3rd of this year. Here are a few highlights. The full interview can be found at .

"It has been a very good year," Shabalov said yesterday from his home. By December, newspapers were referring to him as the "American Player of the Year" and he was featured in several international chess magazines. Shabalov said he won about $80,000 in prize money in 2003. With his game in place, Shabalov plans to take a break in the spring and try to write about some of his experiences on the road. "I want to write something entertaining about modern tournament life, the life of a tournament player. I think I have a lot of funny stories. I got so many offers," Shabalov said.

Who knows where it could lead? Could Alexander Shabalov build a reputation that makes him a household name in chess, like Bobby Fischer did so many years ago? When Shabalov sits down at the computer to write, he is certain that he won't be working on an autobiography -- not at age 36."It's a bit early for that," he said. Shabalov, who has been playing chess since he was 7, was trained according to the precepts of the Soviet School of Chess. He discovered the game by watching his father play with his friends in his homeland. He became a professional chess player in 1988 and a Grandmaster in 1991. With the Soviet Union beginning to crumble, Shabalov and his wife left Riga, Latvia, in 1992 and settled in Pittsburgh, where his wife's sister was already living. His wife, Olga, is a cardiologist at UPMC Shadyside Hospital. They have two daughters, Anna, 15, and Kathy, 11.

4) Games of IM William Martz

Duane Catania recently donated a number of books and magazines to the Mechanics' Institute. One of the items was a booklet produced by the late IM Bill Martz (1945-1983) for a class he taught in his hometown of Milwaukee in 1976. The following three games are not given in ChessBase Mega 2004. Does anyone know when and where they were played (Martz didn't give this information)?

Martz,W - Browne,W [E79]

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.f4 0-0 6.Nf3 c5 7.Be2 cxd4 8.Nxd4 Nc6 9.Be3 Bg4 10.Nxc6 Bxe2 11.Nxd8 Bxd1 12.Rxd1 Rfxd8 13.Ke2 Rdc8 14.c5 dxc5 15.e5 Ng4 16.Rd7 b6 17.Rxe7 Re8 18.Rxe8+ Rxe8 19.Bc1 f6

Black should have tried 19...Nh6 and 20...Nf5 - Martz.

20.Kf3 Nh6 21.exf6 Bxf6 22.g4 Nf7 23.Rd1 Nd8 24.Nd5 Bg7 25.Nc7 Rf8 26.Rd7 Nf7 27.Ke4 h5 28.gxh5 gxh5 29.Ne6 Ra8 30.Kf5 Bh8 31.Ng5 Nxg5 32.Kxg5 Re8 33.f5 Re1 34.Kg6 Rg1+ 35.Bg5 Rxg5+ 36.Kxg5 Bxb2 37.Kg6 Kf8 38.f6 Ke8 39.Rxa7 1-0

Martz,W - Van Buskirk,C [E79]

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.f4 0-0 6.Nf3 c5 7.Be2 cxd4 8.Nxd4 Nc6 9.Be3 Bg4 10.Nxc6 Bxe2 11.Nxd8 Bxd1 12.Rxd1 Rfxd8 13.Ke2 Nd7 14.Rd3 Nc5 15.Bxc5 dxc5 16.Rhd1 Rxd3 17.Rxd3 Bxc3 18.bxc3 Kf8

Black would do better to give up a pawn to activate his Rook: 18...Rc8 19.Rd7 Rc6 20.Rxb7 Ra6 with good chances to draw - Martz.

18...Rc8 19.Rd7 Rc6 20.Rxb7 Ra6] 19.Rd7 b6 20.g4 f6 21.h4 h6 22.a4 Kf7 23.f5 g5 24.h5 Ke8 25.Rc7 Kf7 26.a5 bxa5 27.Rxc5 a4 28.Ra5 e6 29.c5 exf5 30.exf5 a3 31.Kd3 a2 32.Kc4 Ke7 33.Rxa2 a5 34.Kb5 Rb8+ 35.Kc6 Rc8+ 36.Kb6 Rb8+ 37.Kc7 Rb3 38.c6 Rxc3 39.Rxa5 Rc4 40.Ra7 Rxg4 41.Kb8+ Kd6 42.c7 Rc4 43.c8Q Rxc8+ 44.Kxc8 Ke5 45.Ra5+ Kf4 46.Kd7 g4 47.Ke6 Kg5 48.Ra3 Kxh5 49.Kxf6 Kh4 50.Kg6 1-0

Grefe,J - Martz,W [B80]

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 e6 5.Nc3 Qc7 6.g3 a6 7.Bg2 Nf6 8.0-0 d6 9.Re1 Bd7 10.Nxc6 bxc6 11.Na4 Be7 12.c4 0-0 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

5) Here and There

Mig Greengard known for his work at, has Bay Area roots having grown up in El Sobrante. Now he has his own website at . A recent article by Mig at this site featured former MI Chess Director Jim Eade, author of the best-selling Chess for Dummies.

Speaking of Books. Through insider sources I've been keeping tabs on the best-selling chess books at one of America's largest online and offline booksellers. (No, not just checking their popularity rankings online, which vary dramatically due to complex and rigged formulas.) "Chess for Dummies" outsells the rest, with the classic "Bobby Fischer Teaches Chess" close behind. Both of these outsold the new Kasparov "My Great Predecessors" book if you take the average of its first few months of availability. Of course the massive "Predecessors" hardback costs two to four times as much as the others. There has been a great deal of conjecture over which chess book is the best selling of all time, with most plumping for "Fischer Teaches..." That would certainly seem to be fair claim based on how well it still sells. Chess historian Edward Winter has discussed the various claims in his Chess Notes column ( and compilations. The top chess books far outsell the top bridge books. On the other hand, the top-selling nonfiction book, "The South Beach Diet," sells 250 times the top chess book, "Dummies." The good news is that the Dummies book, by Jim Eade, is an excellent primer. Even better is GM Patrick Wolff's book "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Chess". Put decorative paper dust-jackets on them if you're embarrassed to read them on the bus.

FM Eric Schiller writes:

Head over to Sign up the club, download the software, turn on the machines Friday morning, January 30th, and the club will earn part of a Guinness Record for Man vs. Machines event. All the information is up at their site. I'm working with them on the event. No cost, just a fun event which should get some decent media coverage. Members can participate from their home/office/school, too. Each participant gets a certificate as part of the official Guinness record. The game will be between GM Peter Nielsen and the Chessbrain distributed computing project. We expect over 1000 computers from around the world to gang up on the GM

Steinitz mistranslated? A recent exchange in GM Alexander Baburin's Chess Today ( suggests that a well-known axiom attributed to Steinitz might be misunderstood.

Mr. Barsky misquoted Steinitz, who said only that failing to attack in a superior position would lose the advantage - not transfer it to the opponent writes IM Anthony Saidy.

To which GM Baburin replies: I agree. More interesting, however, is the (relatively) recent dispute between Mark Dvoretsky and GM Iosif Dorfman on whether the stronger side has to attack in the superior position and whether this is what Steinitz claimed. As I understand, Dorfman believes that Steinitz was misquoted when translated to Russian and English and that he never declared this necessity to attack" a good squeeze would do just fine!

Congratulations to MI Member Hugo Kitano for his third place finish in the K-3 National Championships last December in Chicago.

IM Jay Whitehead of Berkeley is offering chess lessons. Contact him at or (510) 204-9278 .

with Fred Wilson
Live Internet Radio Show
This Week's Guest, Wednesday, January 14th, will be IM Jack Peters!
Fred Wilson Wednesdays on !
Wednesday night now brings you back-to-back "Chess & Books with Fred Wilson" for your listening enjoyment!

5:00 PM ET Chess & Books - Replay of GM Larry Christiansen--
7:00 PM ET Chess & Books - Replay of GM Michael Rohde--
9:00 PM ET Chess & Books - Live Show
11:05 PM ET Replay of Live Show

6) Upcoming Events

Upcoming Tournaments at the MI

Bob Burger Open - Jan. 17, 2004

Henry Gross Memorial - Feb. 7, 2004

The Mechanics' Institute Scholastic Quads Tournaments: January 24, February 21, and March 13 Open to players age 18 and under (Limited to first 80 players) Game/45

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