Mechanics’ Institute Chess Room Newsletter #621
March 27, 2013
No more of the real world impinges upon a work of art than the reality of India impinges upon the game of chess.
—Viktor Shklovsky (1893-1984), Russian critical philosopher
This Saturday the Mechanics’ Institute is holding a free one-day tournament for children.
This is a fun event with prizes and starts at 10 am (registration to 9:45 am).
1) Mechanics’ Institute Chess Club News
National Master Jimmy Heiserman and Dzmitry Kunets shared top honors in the Max Wilkerson Memorial Game/45, with scores of 4.5 from 5. This performance gives Kunets, a newcomer from Belarus, a provisional rating of 2236. The Wilkerson, held the same weekend as the US Junior Congress in Burlingame, attracted 41 players.
The Spring Tuesday Night Marathon is one of the stronger and better-attended in recent memory. There are seven masters or stronger competing, with 19 in the 82-player field rated over 2000. It’s still possible to enter the eight-rounder with half-point byes for the first two games.
Tell your friends that non-members can now play the Wednesday Night Blitz!
It is time for the weekly blitz tournament at Mechanics Institute Chess Club. As always, the last entry is accepted at 6:40 pm, with sign-up beginning at 6:20 pm. Entry is $7 with clock; $8 without clock. Non-member entry is $9 with clock; $10 without clock. Prizes are 50%, 30%, 20% of base entry fees ($7 per player) collected. Time control preferably is 3 minute, increment 2 seconds; otherwise 5 minutes, no increment.
Last week we had 8 players in the Blitz. The winners were
1st / 2nd tie - Carlos D’Avila, Elliott Winslow
3rd - Jules Jelinek
Look forward to seeing you tonight.
Weekly Wednesday Night Blitz Coordinator
2) Jacqueline Piatigorsky
The following comes from Dr. H. J. Ralston’s column “The Chess Player”, which appeared in the Argonaut in 1952-53. This article is from February 22, 1952.
Mrs. Gregor Piatigorsky of Los Angeles, the wife of the celebrated cellist, is a remarkable person in her own right. According to intimate friends of Mrs. Piatigorsky, she excels in anything she undertakes – and she undertakes practically everything.
Not very long ago, Mrs. Piatigorsky became seriously interested in chess and proceeded to take lessons from Mr. Herman Steiner of Los Angeles, the well-known international master and former United States champion. After about a year of study, Mrs. Piatigorsky participated in the California Open Championship Tournament last September, and finished in 13th place in a field of 43 players! In this tournament she won, drew four, and lost only one—and against men who were for the most part veterans of the game.
Mrs. Piatigorsky was persuaded to take part in the United States Women’s Championship last October, where she competed against nine of the strongest women players in the country. She finished in a tie for 8th and 9th, ahead of the experienced Miss A. Raetig of Hoboken.
We feel safe in predicting that within a very short time Mrs. Piatigorsky will be a serious contender for the women’s title. Mr. Steiner, her teacher, says that she plays chess like a man, by which he means that her play shows a vigor and determination characteristic of the masculine type of play. The game below, which any man would be proud to have played, is from the Los Angeles County Championship tournament of this year. Mrs. Piatigorsky’s opponent, Mr. Sven Almgren, is a very strong player with an immense amount of tournament experience.
Sven Almgren–Jacqueline Piatigorsky
Los Angeles County Championship 1952
1.d4 f5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.g3 e6 4.Bg2 Be7 5.0–0 0–0 6.c4 c6 7.Nc3 Qe8 8.d5 d6 9.dxe6 Bxe6 10.b3 Na6 11.Ng5 Bf7 12.Qc2 Bg6 13.Ne6 Rf7 14.f4 Ng4 15.h3 Bf6 16.hxg4 Qxe6 17.g5 Bd4+ 18.Kh2 h6 19.gxh6 Bh5 20.Bf3 Qxh6 21.Kg2 Bxf3+ 22.Rxf3 Re8 23.e3 g6!
Initiating an overwhelming attack against the white king.
If 24.exd4, Rh7 wins quickly. But White has no satisfactory defense in any case.
24...Rh7 25.Qd3 Qh2+ 26.Kf1 Qxb2 0–1
White cannot meet Black’s threats, not the least of which is ...Rh1 mate. An extraordinary game for a player of so little experience! San Francisco Argonaut, February 22, 1952.
3) Lost and Found
The United States does not have the best record for preserving its chess history. One need only examine the relatively poor success in saving games from top class events to realize things could have been done better to archive material. Unlike many other countries the United States does not have a national database but that has not stopped a dedicated group of individuals from trying to rectify this situation. One can mention the names of Andy Ansel, John Blackstone, Max Burkett, John Hilbert, Eduardo Bauza Mercere and Richard Reich as individuals who have spent long hours entering American games from newspapers, magazines and individual scores. Sometimes they strike gold, as Andy Ansel did with the following three games which are missing from Mega Database 2013.
Many of the US Championships of the 1960s were held over the Christmas/New Year’s holidays in deference to the majority of players holding regular jobs. That being the case the tournaments often straddled two years and it’s common to see them listed, this one for example, as the 1965/66 US Championship.
Oddly enough, these three missing games were all played in the event that ran December 12-30, 1965, but was officially the 1966 US Championship! Bobby Fischer won the seventh of his eight titles in this tournament.
US Championship (8), 1965
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nc3 d5 3.Bg5 g6 4.f3 c5 5.e4 dxe4 6.Bb5+ Bd7 7.Bxf6 exf6 8.Bxd7+ Nxd7 9.fxe4 cxd4 10.Qxd4 Nb6 11.Nd5 Bg7 12.Nf3 0–0 13.0–0–0 f5 14.e5 Nxd5 15.Qxd5 Qb6 16.Qd4 Qa5 17.Qd5 Qb6 18.Qd4 Rfd8 19.Qxb6 axb6 20.c3 Kf8 21.Rd4 Ke7 22.Rhd1 Rxd4 23.cxd4 Rxa2 24.Rd3 f6 25.Rb3 Ra6 26.Kd1 fxe5 27.dxe5 Bh6 28.Kc2 Bf8 29.Rc3 Kd7 30.Rd3+ Ke8 31.Kc3 Ra5 32.Kc4 Rc5+ 33.Kd4 Rb5 34.b3 Bg7 35.Kc4 Rc5+ 36.Kd4 Ke7 37.b4 Rc2 38.g3 h6 39.Kd5 Rc8 40.Re3 g5 41.Nd4 Rd8+ 42.Kc4 Rf8 43.Kd5 Rd8+ 44.Kc4 b5+ 45.Nxb5 f4 46.gxf4 gxf4 ½–½
Sicilian Scheveningen B80
US Championship (10), 1965
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.d4 cxd4 5.Nxd4 e6 6.g3 Be7 7.Bg2 0–0 8.0–0 Nc6 9.b3 a6 10.Bb2 Nxd4 11.Qxd4 Qc7 12.Rac1 b5 13.Nd1 Bb7 14.c4 Qa5 15.a3 bxc4 16.Rxc4 d5 17.b4 Qd8 18.exd5 Bxd5 19.Bxd5 Qxd5 20.Ne3 Qxd4 21.Bxd4 Rfd8 22.Bc5 Kf8 23.Bxe7+ Kxe7 24.Rc7+ Rd7 25.Rfc1 Ra7 26.Rxa7 Rxa7 27.Rc5 Ne4 28.Ra5 Nd6 29.a4 Nb7 30.Rh5 h6 31.Nc4 Ra8 32.Na5 Nd8 33.Rc5 Rb8 34.Nc6+ Nxc6 35.Rxc6 Rxb4 36.Rxa6 f5 37.h4 Kf6 38.a5 Ra4 39.Ra8 g5 40.hxg5+ hxg5 41.a6 Ke5 42.a7 Ra1+ 43.Kg2 g4 44.Kh2 Ke4 45.Re8 Rxa7 46.Rxe6+ Kf3 47.Rf6 Ra5 48.Kg1 ½–½
US Championship (10), 1965
1.d4 g6 2.c4 Bg7 3.Nc3 d6 4.e4 Nc6 5.Be3 e5 6.d5 Nd4 7.Nge2 Nxe2 8.Bxe2 Nh6 9.f3 f5 10.Qd2 Nf7 11.exf5 gxf5 12.0–0–0 h5 13.f4 e4 14.Bd4 Bxd4 15.Qxd4 c5 16.dxc6 bxc6 17.g3 Be6 18.h3 Qb6 19.c5 Qxc5 20.Qxc5 dxc5 21.a3 Ke7 22.Rdg1 Rad8 23.Nd1 Nd6 24.Ne3 Nb5 25.g4 Nd4 26.Bd1 hxg4 27.hxg4 fxg4 28.Bxg4 Bxg4 29.Rxh8 Rxh8 30.Rxg4 Rh3 31.Kd2 Nb3+ 32.Ke2 Nc1+ 33.Kd2 Nb3+ 34.Ke2 Kf6 35.Rg8 Nd4+ 36.Kd2 Rf3 37.Rf8+ Ke7 38.Ra8 Rxf4 39.Rxa7+ Ke6 40.Ra8 Rf2+ 41.Kd1 Rxb2 42.Re8+ Kd7 43.Rxe4 Rb3 44.a4 Rb4 45.a5 Nb3 46.Rc4 Kc7 47.Kc2 Rb5 48.a6 Nd4+ 49.Kd3 Ra5 50.Rc1 Ne6 51.Nc4 Rxa6 52.Rf1 Kd8 53.Rf7 Ra4 54.Ne5 Ke8 55.Rh7 Nf4+ 56.Kd2 Ra6 57.Rc7 ½–½