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The April Check is in the Mail Print E-mail
By Alex Dunne   
April 11, 2012
Fischvogtlead.jpgThe 2011 Michigan State Championship has ended with a tie between the two Masters, Eric Fischvogt and Barry Endsley at 6-2 each.


By quiet but effective means Eric Fischvogt demonstrates the power of the two Bishops in both the loosening up and constricting of the opponent’s kingside.


1.e4 c5 2.c3 Nf6 3.e5 Nd5 4.d4 cxd4 5.Nf3 e6 6.cxd4 b6

This and an immediate 6...d6 are the most popular ways of meeting White's setup.
7.Nc3 Nxc3 8.bxc3 Qc7 9.Bd2 Bb7 10.Bd3 Be7
The more modern method for Black is to leave the Bishop on f8 in deference to developing the Knight by 10...d6 11. 00 Nd7 12. Re1 dxe5 13. Nxe5 Nxe5 14. Rxe5 Bd6 15. Rh5 as in Mammadov-Smirin, Baku 2011.
11.0–0 d6 12.Re1 Nd7 13.Ng5

White is ambitious.  13. Rac1 does not score very well and White's battleground would appear to be the center and kingside.
13...dxe5 14.Qh5 Bxg5

White has scored +2 =2 –0 in recent events against 14...g6.  Schmittdiel-Schelle, Seefeld 1997 continued 14...g6 15. Qh6 Bf8 16. Qh3 Bg7 17. f4 with an unclear position.
15.Bxg5 Kf8?!  
Black is perplexed -- what to do?  After 15...Qc6 16. Be4 Qc7 17. Bxb7 Qxb7 18. dxe5 leaves Black cramped. Taking the c-Pawn may be playable but also painful after 15...Qxc3 16. Bb5 Qc7 17. Rac1 Qd6 18. dxe5  Qd5 19. Bxd7+ Qxd7 20. Red1 when material is even but Black is cramped. But 15...Kf8?! looks the most cramped of all.
16.dxe5 h6 17.c4
For now White's attack is stalled and so a brief rescue operation to save the c3 Pawn is necessary.  More active is 17. Re3 Qxc3 18. Rd1  White stands better but there is nothing yet decisive. A few moves later, however, the value of the c-Pawn attacking the d5 square is evident.
17...Nc5 18.Bc2 Qc6 19.f3 Qe8
Black's King was getting very lonely with most of his pieces on the queenside, but White already has a strong initiative.
20.Qh4 Kg8 21.Bf6!

The Bishop is taboo -- 21...gxf6 22. Qg3+ Kf8 23. exf6 Rg8 24. Qd6+
21...Nd7 22.Qg3 Nxf6 23.exf6 g5
Nor is 23...g6 adequate-- 24. Rad1 Rh7 25. Qc7 Ba6 26. Rd7 and White is dominating the board.
24.Rad1 Qc6 25.Qd6 h5
Planning to get the Rook into the fight, but two quick Queen moves expose the fatal position of the King.
26.Qd8+! Qe8 27.Qd2 1–0

The co-winner of the Michigan State Championship, Barry Endsley, can also lay claim to another great finish – third place in the 2007 Electronic Knights Championship.  Great finishes may be an Endsley specialty.  Note this endgame race, one of the most exciting finishes in recent CC play.



The Canadian Correspondence Chess Association has organized a two-tiered memorial tournament to honor ICCF IM Walter Muir.  The first tier is a 15-man section with two US GM’s Jason Bokar and Daniel Fleetwood.  They will be competing against six other GM’s and six SIMs.

The second tier also consists of fifteen players headed by 3 IM’s and 2 SIM’s and includes US players Steve Douglas and Anthony Kain and Canadian players Paul Morley, Serge Dubuc, and Valer-Eugen Demian.

IM  WALTER MUIR 1905-1999

For those of you not familiar with Walter Muir, Walter had been everywhere.  A true pioneer of postal play, Walter was one of the first Americans to forage into modern international correspondence play. Walter was eight times a CC champion of Canada, twice British overseas champion, first in the 1984 Hawver Cup, sixteen times CC champion of Illinois.  Walter played in two Absolute tournaments and seven Golden Knights Finals. He was awarded the title of International Correspondence Chess Master in 1971.

Walter was born in Brooklyn to Canadian parents on August 7, 1905 and died December 29, 1999.
Readers interested in the career of this remarkable correspondence player can find out more in his autobiography My 75 Year Chess Career.



Quote: Correspondence games are a rich source for discovering new and important opening ideas for OTB players, as these games are generally very thoroughly researched and analyzed by the players involved -- John Emms

LEARN CHESS BY MAIL !  Lessons given by mail, telephone, ICC – many different ways.  I specialize in players rated 800-2100 who would like to improve their game.  Contact me for information.  Alex Dunne, 324 West Lockhart St., Sayre, PA 18840 or [email protected]

Chess booklet for sale:  2004 Golden Knights Championship  --  booklet of the 57th USCF CC Championship -- $10.00 postage  paid.  35 pages, 90+ games

Kiven Plesset, born November 23, 1927, died in January 2012.  Kiven, of Sequim, Washington, was one of the top CC players.  He finished tied for second through third in the 1972 Golden Knights, tied for first through second in the 1981 Absolute tournament, finished  clear first in the 1996 event, and Kiven tied for first place in the Fifth United States Correspondence Chess Championship.


In the following game, with seven isolated Pawns, Black holds the draw against a strong Master.



Swift Quad
     Carlos Graupera  11SQ06     5-1  
     Elton Aguilar      12SQ01    5 ½ - ½

Walter Muir
      Rick Massimo    10W24    5 ½-½
      David Cornejo   12W03    5 ½-½
      Thomas Haggard 11W23  5 ½-½
      Edward Schweikert 11W37 5-1
      Paul Lowry           11W37   5-1

Golden Knights
      Spencer Kell          10N17   5 ½-½
      Gary Adams          11N13   6-0
      Charles Musgrove 10N24   6-0

John Collins
      LaVerne Gildner     11C05   6-0

Trophy Quad
       Alphonso Zenoh   11Q09   6-0
       James Ruth            11Q02  6-0
       Carlos Graupera    11Q05

Electronic Knights
       Richard Moran  11EN22  5-1
       William Morris  11EN22  5-1


1 Cullum, Chuck MA  2476
2 Menke, John IL 2453
3 Van Enk, Steven OR 2443
4 O'Connell, Christopher DE 2429
5 Langland, Thomas  CA 2404
Concha, Hugo FL 2404
7 Tracz, James  OH 2401
8 Buss, Michael IN 2392
9 Cook, Randy AZ 2391
10 Ingersol, Harry IA 2388
11 Brower, Walter AL 2374
12 Woodard, Daniel NV 2369
13 Walters, Gary OH 2368
14 Levine, Joel NY 2363
15 Rizzo, Robert NY 2360
16 Rodriguez, Keith FL 2359
17 Swan, Peter Lee CO 2358
18 Tseng, Wilbur IL 2352
19 Wilson, Abe HI 2347
Adams, Gary AZ 2347

While Black misses 18...Nxe5 to hold on, White misses nothing.




1.  Alik Zilberberg        GM     2611
2.  Jason Bokar            GM     2581
3.  Stephen Ham          GM      2580
4.  Daniel Fleetwood    GM    2578
5.  Tim Murray SIM     2546
6.  Edward Duliba          GM    2534
7.  Jon Edwards           SIM    2524
8.  Jon Ostriker            GM      2521
9.  Keith Holzmueller  SIM       2501
10.  Michael Proof        SIM    2487
11.  Victor Palciauskas GM      2479
12.  Jerry Weiskohl      SIM     2476
13.  Kenneth Reinhart   SIM     2470
14.  John Menke             IM    2467
15.  Michael Millstone SIM      2466
   Carl Siefring                IM    2466
17.  Dan Perry              SIM    2465
18.  Wieland Belka                   2447
19.  Wesley Green                    2444
20.  Thomas Biedermann SIM 2437

What do you do when the opening goes very sour against you?  John Menke heads the game right to the draw.


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