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The June Check is in the Mail Print E-mail
By Alex Dunne   
June 7, 2014
Aleksandr Dronov - World Champion

Aleksandr Dronov of Russia has repeated as World Champion.  Dronov, the 22nd World Champion scored three wins to lead the field in the 27th Championship. Dronov gained his ICCM title in 2003 and his ICGM in 2005.  He finished first in the Kopylov memorial and second place at first board in the 17th Olympiad.


In playing the Semi-Slav Defense both sides announce they are playing for a win. In chess, however, only one side can win.


1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Nc3 e6 5.Bg5 h6 6.Bh4 dxc4 7.e4 g5 8.Bg3 b5

The theory of this position is very complex. Black is a Pawn ahead and controls 3/8 of the board.  White controls the center and has a lead in development. Black has weaknesses. over the whole board.  White will probably have to sacrifice more material to open up the board.   
Today the most common line for White is 9. Be2 with mixed results.  Statistically 9. Ne5 does not do much better than 9. Be2, but it had the advantage of not being as well explored in 2011.
Apparently the best line against  9. Ne5 is 9...Nbd7!? 10. Nxc6 Qb6 returning the Pawn immediately and leveling the position.
10.h4 g4 11.Be2 b4
Black has the Romantic spirit in this game, going after White's center at the cost of his Pawn structure and, more valuable, time.
12.Na4 Nxe4 13.0-0 Bg7

Not good for Black is  13...Nxg3 14. Fxg3 f6 15. Ng6 Rh6 16. Nxf8 Kxf8 17. Qd2 Kg7 18. Bxc4.
14.Bf4 0-0 15.Bxc4 Nd6 16.Bd3 Nb5 17.Re1 Nxd4
Black has completed the destruction of White's center and remains two or three Pawns ahead,  but White is near totally mobilized (only that Rook on a1 is not contributing to the battle but it needs only a single move to come into the fray.)  Chances are still balanced.
18.Nc5 a5 19.Qd2 Qe7 20.Nb3 Nxb3 21.axb3 Rd8
This is very risky as the d-file will soon belong to White.
22.Rad1 Rd5 23.Qc2 Qe8 24.Nc4!
Eyeing two critical squares -- b6 and d6.
24...Nd7 25.Nd6 Rxd6
Black's game falls apart after 25...Qf8 26. Qxc6
26.Bh7+ Kh8 27.Rxd6 Nf8 28.Be4 Bd7 29.Qc5 e5 30.Bh6 f6 31.Bxg7+ Kxg7 32.Bxc6 Bxc6 33.Rxc6

As the clouds of complications clear, White's advantage becomes clear: the exchange wins as Black's King is too exposed.
33...Rd8 34.Rc7+ Rd7 35.Qxa5 Ne6 36.Rxd7+ Qxd7 37.Qxb4 Nd4 38.Qc4 Qb7 39.b4 Qa8 40.Kh2 Nf5 41.Qe4 Qxe4 42.Rxe4 Nd6 43.Re1 1-0 

ICCF Titlist William Fuller

William (Liam) Fuller has earned the title of International Correspondence Chess Master based on his results in the 36th World Championship Preliminaries and the Webserver Master Norm event 89.  His overall record in these two events was 10 wins, 16 draws, ad no losses.

Born August 1, 1957, Liam started playing chess at age 21.  He progressed rapidly to Expert strength, but played less and less frequently.  In 2009 he discovered correspondence chess.  Here is a recent sample of that discovery.  


US Correspondence Chess Championship 21 Semifinals

The US Correspondence Chess Championship 21 Semifinals are open to all players with a USA flag 2000+ rated by ICCF, CCLA, or USCF/FIDE (Correspondence or over the board).

There will be 7 player sections, winners qualify for the Finals.  Two way ties both advance, three way if it does not mean too many Finalists.  More than three will require a tiebreak: most wins, S-B, or Forecast rating.

Entry fee is $20, multiple entries allowed with additional entries $15.

Forecast or fixed ratings close to 2000 may be used to fill out sections.

Start date is July 4.  Entries may be submitted any time before June 15.  See iccfus.com, Store.

Time control will be a new server option: 150 days for first ten moves, 15/10 after that.  This will allow more time in the early part of the games, about the same amount of time through 50 moves as 40/10, and will allow games to conclude faster after that.

Seeding will be by rating, across all sections and within sections.

Finals will be 13-17 players, with invitations to highest rated available to fill the section as needed.  As always CCLA and USCF will be invited to nominate a player, and a  past Champ may be invited.  Co-champs will be declared if there is a two way tie in the Finals.  If more than two there will be a double round robin playoff.


Walter Muir
Matt Barrett       14W12    6-0

Trophy Quad

Philip DeAugustino  12Q03  5-1 

Bryce Avery Earns IA Title

Bryce Avery has been granted the International Arbiter's title to be awarded in October in Sydney, Australia  Bryce has been active as a ICCF Director for a number of years.  He also has been very active in CCLA play and in 1999 authored a book Correspondence Chess in America.

Bobby Johnson Earns ICCM Title

Bobby Johnson has fulfilled the two norms to earn the ICCM title.  His ICCF record on the way to the norms is 9 wins and 14 draws without a loss.  

Bobby began playing with his parents, but it was the Spassky-Fischer match of 1972 that rekindled his interest in the game.  He began playing online chess at chess.com where he eventually rose to become the number one rated player at the website and then joined ICCF 

Top 10 Rated USCF CFC Players

(as of May 1, 2014)
1.  John Menke                 1L            2489
2.  Michael Buss                IN           2430
3.  Wesley Brandhorst        FL            2416
4.  Harry Ingersol              IA            2415
5. James Tracz                  OH          2405
6  Wilbur Tseng                 IL            2403
7.  Anthony Kain               SC           2398
8.  Stephen McGregor        TX           2391
9.  David Sogin                  KY           2386
10.  Chris Torres                CA          2375


Wilfred Ching of Honolulu, Hawaii, was born March 12, 1944, and died this December.  Wilfred was quite active in playing for trophies in correspondence, dating back to 2008.

Ed Boyle of Tulsa, Oklahoma,  born September 17, 1954, died May 15, 2014.

Ed was active as a coach and director in te Tulsa area, but it was in correspondence play that he thrived.








In a close game, Black sacs a piece for three Pawns and an apparently irresistible attack.  White finds a way to resist and eventually win.