Home Page Chess Life Online The August Check is in the Mail
|The August Check is in the Mail|
|By Alex Dunne|
|August 20, 2015|
Joel Levine wins Palciauskas again !
Joel Levine has a special knack for winning the Victor Palciauskas tournaments. The Commack, New York Master has now claimed his third Palciauskas adding to his 2008 and 2011 victories.
GAME OF THE MONTH
Joel Levine demonstrates his classical approach to chess by this little gem which features central play on both sides and then when White conquers the center, a quick and fatal switch to the kingside. All this with minimal cooperation from his opponent, James Chessing.
PIRC'S DEFENSE (B07)
1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 c6 4.f4
The most aggressive and effective lineup against the Pirc's. The next most popular continuation is 4. Nf3 was seen in Leko-Mamedyarov, Tashkent 2012, which continued 4. Nf3 Bg4 5. h3 Bh5 6. Bd3 e6 with a slight edge to White. According to Garry Kasparov, the Pirc Defence is "hardly worth using in the tournaments of the highest category" as it gives White "too many opportunities for anybody's liking".
Some of the queenside tactics involved in the Pirc's are demonstrated in the game Maia-Ellis ICCF 2012 in the line based on 4...g6: 4...g6 5. Nf3 Bg7 6. Bd3 00 7. 00 Na6 8. a3 c5 9. d5 Nc7 10. Qe1 b5 11. Bxb5 Nxe4 12. Qxe4 Bxc3 13. Bc6 Bf6 14. Bxa8 Bf5 15. Qa4 Qxe8 with an edge to White.
A lesser known line with a good winning percentage for White is Fischvogt-McAuliffe, 2013 Michigan State CC Championship, which continued 5. e5 Ne4 6. Qf3 d5 (6...Nxc3) 7. Bd3 Nxc3 8. Bd2 Qb6 9. bxc3
Black has two other choices here, both leading to a slight edge for White: Grishuk-Mamedyarov, Aeroflot Open 2013 continued 6...Bg4 7. Be3 Be7 8. 00 Nbd7 9. h3 Bxf3 10. Qxf3 += and Tiviakov-Hernandez Bermudez, Panama Open 2011 : 6....Nbd7 7. Be3 Be7 8. Qd2 00 9. 000 Re8 10. Kb1
Exchanging in the enter is premature as shown in a famous upset Kasparov-Holzke, Cologne simul 1988: 6. dxe5 dxe5 7. f5 b5 8. Nf3 b5 9. Ne2 Nbd7 10. 00 Bc5+ 11. Kh1 Ng4
6...exd4 7.Nxd4 g6 8.0-0
8. Nf3 Bg7 9. 00 Bg4 10. Qe1 as in Vorobiris-Vaitsekhovsky, Nezhmetdinov Cup 2013 is the main alternative here with 8. Nb3 a distant third.
8...Bg7 9.Kh1 0-0 10.f5
With this thrust, White commits to the attack.
Another way of continuing was Corbat-Zaugg, SUI-SFSV 2013 11. Qe1 a6 12. Qh4. Levine's 11. Bf4 seems sounder.
Levine opts to save the two Bishops for duty later on. Filipenko-Pridovozhni, Nezhmedinov Mem 2010 saw 12. Qd2 Bd7 13. Nf3 gxf5 14. Nxe5!? dxe5 16. Bh6 f4 17. Bxg7 Kxg7 17. g3 with equal chances.
Black has to be careful here --12...Re8 weakens Black's defensive strength along the f-file. Relocating the Queen with 12...Qc7 strengthening f7 and d6 keeps the position balanced, but Black has other, dangerous, ideas
A good idea but the wrong execution. First 12....Qb6 hitting b2 and preventing 13. Bh6 which would lose a piece. After 13. Nb3 then 13...d5 keeps the position about even.
The flaw behind ...Re8 is exposed. White threatens the Knight on f6.
14...Ned7 15.fxg6 hxg6 16.exd5 Nxd5 17.Bc4 N7b6
Ominously Black's pieces move further away from their King.
18.Qf2 Rf8 19.Nb3
It seems that 19. Bb3! leaves Black struggling for cohesion.
19...Qb4 20.Bxd5 Nxd5 21.Nxd5 cxd5 22.c3 Qd6
Black misses his last chance to survive with ...Qb6! offering to play an inferior endgame.
23.Rae1 Be6 24.Nd4
All of White's forces gather for the kill. Black's next fails to hold them back, but 24. ...Rae8 25. Qh4 is likely to succeed. Defense becomes very difficult.
24...a6? 25.Bf6! Rae8 26.Bxg7 Kxg7 27.Qf6+ Kg8 28.Nf5! 1-0
The curtain comes down after 28. ...gxf5 29. Qg5+ Kh7 30. Re3 f4 31. Rxf4
Joel Levine 13P01 6-9
Scott Baker 15W01 6-0
Troy Franklin 15W11 6-0
David Wright 15W09 5 ½-½
Eliza Eggert 15W04 6-0
John Davis 15W07 4-2
Stephen Ziehms 15W14 5-1
Todd Crawford 14Q10 6-0
Chad Mead 13C16 6-0
Robert Edberg III of Campobello, SC, died June 16, 2015 at 85. Robert played Board 13 in the USA - British Postal Chess Federation match which featured an unusual location of two marauding Black Knights.
KING'S GAMBIT (C35)
Pertti Lehikoinen estimates that the 14 games he played during the Finals of the 20th World Championship consumed 14,700 to 14,800 hours. Roughly half of the thinking time he used in analyzing with computers and the other half was done in the traditional way manually at the chessboard or blindfold.
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
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TOP 25 RATED CORRESPONDENCE PLAYERS
The top 25 US Correspondence players come from a diverse variety of states with NY and CA leading the pack with four each and Texas and Ohio wit two.
Here is a gritty struggle well conducted by both sides.
RUY LOPEZ (C68)
This is an exciting game with tactical shots that only temporarily interrupt the positional flow of the game.
ENGLISH OPENING (A11)
White engineers a thematic attack on the Black King with a devastating exchange sacrifice on d5.
CARO-KANN DEFENSE (B12)
The "French Attack" proves it's worth 500 rating points and a half point on the crosstable.
FRENCH DEFENSE (C18)
An opening experiment goes badly awry
KING'S PAWN GAME (C44)