Tuesday Night Marathon Round 5 Report
by Abel Talamantez
FM Ezra Chambers continued to work his magic at the Tuesday Night Marathon, again persevering through an inferior position during much of the game to steal victory from the jaws of defeat against Nathan Fong. Nathan commented right after the game, "That's why they're good," referring to the ability of stronger players to keep their cool in difficult positions, find ways to create opportunities, and leave little room for error to their opponents. He currently leads the top section by a full point and a half with a perfect 5/5. He received a futher half point cushion on his lead from last week after a draw between Ako Heidari and Nicholas Weng. Sean Kelly won an impressive game against Alex Chin, putting Kelly along with Heidari and Weng at 3.5.5.
In the u/1800 section, Marty Cortinas and Daniel Wang played to a draw, and with Christopher Dessert losing to Stephen Parsons, Cortinas and Wang lead the section with 4.5/5. Five players are in the hunt just a half point behind with 4/5, including Parsons, Dessert, Paul Reed, Andrew Imbens and Anton Maliev.
Two more rounds to go in this TNM, the action continues next Tuesday evening starting at 6:30pm PDT, broadcast at 7pm.
Here is the link to the broadcast of round 5: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JfmV2QsUeFk
Here are some games from Tuesday night, annotated by GM Nick de Firmian:
(1) FM Chambers,Ezra (2314) - Fong,Nathan (2049) [B20]
MI Sep-Oct TNM 1800+ San Francisco (5.1), 05.10.2021
1.e4 c5 2.a3 The Delayed Wing Gambit 2...e6 [2...g6!? is another way to cross White's plans.] 3.b4 cxb4 4.axb4 Bxb4 5.c3 Be7 6.d4
This makes the game an Advanced French where White has a strong pawn chain. This is definitely compensation for the pawn. Instead Black could have considered [6...d6 or; 6...b6] 7.e5 Bd7 8.Bd3 Nc6 9.Nh3 Qc7
[9...b5!?] 10.0-0 f6?!
This gives White definte play on the kingside. 11.Qh5+ Kf8 12.f4?!
[12.Re1! is clearly better for White with active pieces and attacking chances] 12...f5=
Now the game is blocked, which Black can be happy about. 13.Ng5 g6 14.Qe2 h6 15.Nf3 a6 16.Nbd2 Na5?! 17.c4!+/= dxc4?!
[17...Bc6] 18.Nxc4 Nxc4 19.Bxc4 Rc8 20.Bd3?!
[20.Bb3+/- Bb5 21.Qa2! Bxf1 22.Kxf1 is great play on the light squares. The e6 pawn is a goner.] 20...Bb4 21.Rb1 a5 22.Be3?!
This allows Black to close the queenside. 22. Bd2 is more aggressive. 22...Ne7 23.Rfc1 Bc6 24.Bc4 Qd7 25.Ne1 Nd5
Black has a clear edge with such control of d5. 26.Nd3 Ba3 27.Nc5 Bxc5 28.dxc5 Kf7 29.Qd2?!
[29.Bxd5 Qxd5 30.Rc4 Qd7 31.Rd4 Bd5-/+] 29...Nxe3!? 30.Qxe3 Rhd8 31.Qb3?!
[31...Qd4+ 32.Kh1 Qf2! is really good for Black. White should not take the pawn on e6 - 33.Bxe6+? Ke7 34.Rg1 Rd2 wins] 32.Qe3 Be4 33.Rb6 Rc6 34.Rb5 Qc7?!
[34...a4 35.Ra5 g5 keeps a clear edge] 35.Qb3?!
[35.Be2 a4 36.h3 Ra8 37.Kh2 a3 38.Ra1] 35...Rd7 36.Qh3 Kg7 37.Qa3 Rd2 38.Bf1 b6?
This gives White a target. Much better was [38...Ra6-+ or; 38...Qd7-+] 39.Qe3!
Ezra jumps at his chance. If the black rook retreats then White can capture on b6 [39.cxb6? now loses to 39...Rxc1 40.bxc7 Rxg2+ 41.Kh1 Rxf1#] 39...Qd8 40.Rxb6 Rd4?
[40...g5-/+] 41.Qb3 Rd2 42.Rb7+
Here they both had five minutes or less, and stopped keeping score. But the DGT board recorded the crucial drama:
[43.c6+- Rdd7 44.Qb6] 43...Qxc7 44.Qxe6 Qd8?
Trading queens wins as the c-pawn marches forward. 45...Kh7
[45...Qxf6 46.exf6+ Kxf6 47.c6 a4 48.c7 Bb7 49.Rb1 Bc8 50.Rb8 Be6 51.Bc4] 46.Qxd8 Rxd8 47.c6 Ra8 48.c7 Bb7 49.Rb1
That's it. There is no way for Black to defend here. 49...Ra7 50.Rxb7 Rxb7 51.c8Q Rg7 52.Qa8 h5 53.Qxa5 h4 54.e6 h3 55.gxh3 g5 56.Qxf5+ Kh6 57.Qf6+ Rg6 58.fxg5+ Kh5 59.Be2+ Kh4 60.Qf4+ Kxh3 61.Qg4#
Nathan had a lot of chances in this game. Ezra kept his cool though and took the opportunities at the end. 1-0
(2) Heidari,Ako (1996) - Weng,Nicholas (2001) [D89]
MI Sep-Oct TNM 1800+ San Francisco (5.2), 05.10.2021
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.e4 Nxc3 6.bxc3 Bg7 7.Bc4 c5 8.Ne2 0-0 9.0-0 Nc6 10.Be3 Bg4 11.f3 Na5 12.Bd3 cxd4 13.cxd4 Be6 14.d5
The height of theory -- seventy years ago! Yet this is a great position to play for both sides. It has lots of action and tactics. 14...Bxa1 15.Qxa1 f6 16.Bh6
[16.Qb1 Bd7 (16...Bf7 17.Nd4 a6 18.Qb4)
17.e5 fxe5 18.Bxg6 would be, like so often in sharp lines, a bail-out to a perpetual.] 16...Re8 17.Kh1?! a6 18.Nf4
[18...Bd7 19.Qe1 e5!? (19...Bb5!?)
] 19.e5!+- e6
[19...g5 20.e6 gxf4 21.exf7+ Kxf7 22.Qd4+- e5 23.Qe4 Rh8 24.g4 Rc8 25.g5 is very strong according to Stockfish] 20.dxe6 Bxe6 21.exf6
[21...Bf7 22.Be4 is "less won".] 22.Be4
Still good, just not best. [22.Nxg6! hxg6 (22...Qf7 23.Ne7+)
23.Bxg6 threatens to crash the party with 24.f7+, and is very winning ("+9.56" Stockfish 14!)] 22...Rad8 23.Qe1
[23.Nxg6! is still winning, even with the free move for Black.] 23...Nc6?
[23...Qb5!? 24.a4! is still close to won again, but nowhere near as bad as played.] 24.Qg3
[24.Nxg6 STILL overwhelming!] 24...Ne5
And after all those times when this was the winning move -- now it's the move that *doesn't* win! Black can trade off a critical piece. [25.h4 is the best. +-.] 25...Nxg6 26.Bxg6 hxg6 27.Qxg6+
It's just a draw -- White has run out of attackers. 27...Kh8 28.Bg7+ Kg8
29.Bh6+ Kh8 30.Bg7+ Kg8 31.Bh6+
An exciting battle. Ako had his chances for the full point, but of course this is very complicated in real time over the board. 1/2-1/2
(3) Argo,Guy (1938) - IM Winslow,Elliott (2269) [B22]
MI Sep-Oct TNM 1800+ San Francisco (5.3), 05.10.2021
1.e4 c5 2.c3 Nf6 3.Qc2 Nc6 [3...Qc7! Take that! The copycat move stops White's d2-d4.] 4.Nf3 e5 5.Bb5!? Qb6!? 6.Bxc6 Qxc6 7.Nxe5 Qxe4+ 8.Qxe4 Nxe4
White has trouble achieving equality. 9.d3 Nf6 10.0-0 d6 11.Nc4
[11.Nf3] 11...Be6 12.Nba3
[Black has a little edge due to the bishop pair. He must keep the game from getting blocked though when knights are happier. Easier may be 12...0-0-0 13.Bg5 d5 14.Ne5 d4 which favors Black.] 13.Ne5 Bd6 14.Re1 0-0 15.Bg5 Rfe8?!
Now White gets equality [15...a6 16.Nc2 (16.Bxf6 gxf6 17.Nf3 f5
would be a better version of the game.)
] 16.Bxf6 gxf6 17.Nf3 a6 18.Nc2= Rad8?!
[19...b6 20.a4 a5 21.g3 f5= keeps the queenside more fluid.] 20.Nh4
[20.Ne3 f5 21.g3 f4 22.Ng2] 20...f5 21.g3?!
Gives Black a hook to play on.
[21.Ne3 f4 22.Nef5 Bc7 (22...Bf8?! 23.g3 fxg3 24.hxg3+/-
according to Stockfish 14. Compare to Black's 21st)
[21...f4!=/+ exchanges a weak pawn, provides scope for the light-squared bishop, loosens White's kingside pawns. But most importantly, the knight at c2 is restricted, unless White plays gxf4 when his own pawns are a problem. 22.Ng2 Kh8! 23.gxf4 Rg8] 22.f4
Maybe not even best! But White slams the door to any activity by Black, when now only he can play on. So it has a psychological value. [22.Ne3 Kf6 23.Nhg2!?] 22...Kf6 23.Ne3 Rg8 24.Kf2 b5 25.b4?!
[25.a3+/= Now Black can prepare the break . ..b4, but it will always be too risky to play.] 25...a5 26.a3 Ra8 27.Nc2
With opening the a-file just leading to the rooks coming off, Black has absolutely no counterplay now. White offered a draw. 1/2-1/2
(4) Chin,Alex (1992) - Kelly,Sean (1786) [B90]
MI Sep-Oct TNM 1800+ San Francisco (5.4), 05.10.2021
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.h3 This has become a popular move against the Najdorf. It gives White reaonable chances without too much theory. 6...e5 7.Nde2 h5 Stopping White's kingside advance is a sound strategy. 8.g3 Be7 9.Bg2 b5 10.0-0 Bb7 11.Be3 Nbd7 12.Qd2 0-0 13.f4 Rc8 14.Nd5
[14...Bxd5 15.exd5 Nb6 16.b3 is a fair alternative] 15.exd5 Bf6=/+
Anyway Black is a little more comfortable. 16.c3?!
[16.fxe5 Bxe5=/+ 17.c3 (17.Rae1)
[16...Nb6!-/+ 17.b3 e4! 18.Bxe4 Re8 19.Bg2 Nxd5 is very good for Black] 17.Rae1?!
[17.fxe5 Nxe5 18.b3] 17...Nb6-/+ 18.Qd1?!
[18.Bxb6 Qxb6+ 19.Kh2] 18...e4!-+
Sean has all his pieces in the right places and pushes actively forward. 19.Nd4 Nxd5 20.Bc1?! Qb6 21.Kh2 Bxd4 22.cxd4 Nf6
Black has won a pawn and has the better position, so Alex decides to go for broke. 23.g4!? hxg4 24.hxg4 Rc4
[24...Rxc1!? 25.Qxc1 Nxg4+ 26.Kg3 Nf6 is also a reasonable continuation] 25.g5 Rxd4 26.Qe2
[26.Be3 Rxd1 27.Bxb6 Rxe1 28.Rxe1 Nh5] 26...Nd5 27.Qh5 Bc8
[27...e3 28.g6 fxg6 29.Qxg6 Qd8] 28.Rh1 Bf5!
The White attack is completely shut down unless he can get through on the h-file. That plan has its problems. 29.Bh3
[29.Qh4 Qc5] 29...Rd3!
The best move, when White is collapsing. The threat of 30...Qf2+ is lethal. 30.Kg2 Rf3 31.Be3? Nxe3+
A great game by Sean. 0-1
(5) Brownlow,Samuel (1795) - Gimelfarb,Ilia (1752) [C44]
MI Sep-Oct TNM 1800+ San Francisco (5.8), 05.10.2021
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d3 Bc5 4.g3 Nf6 5.Bg2 d6 6.0-0 Be6 7.Be3 Bxe3 8.fxe3 Qd7 9.Nbd2 h6 10.c3 0-0 11.b4 a6 12.d4 Bg4 13.a4 b5 14.Qb3 Rfe8 15.axb5 axb5 16.d5 Ne7 17.c4 This game was the slowest developing game of the round (time wise). The players get to a real battle eventually. 17...bxc4 18.Qxc4 c6 19.dxc6 Qxc6 20.Qxc6 Nxc6 21.b5 Nb4 22.Nc4 Rad8 23.Ra3 Nxe4
24.Nfxe5 dxe5 25.Bxe4 Be2 26.Rb1
material and chances are still even 26...Nd5 27.Rc1 g6 28.Kf2 Bg4 29.Bf3 Bc8 30.Bxd5 Rxd5 31.Nb6 Rdd8 32.Nxc8 Rxc8 33.Rxc8 Rxc8
We have an equal material rook ending. 34.Ke2 e4 35.Kd2 Kf8 36.Ra4 f5 37.Ra6 Kf7
White is better due to the passed pawn. Now 38. b6 would keep the edge. 38.Rc6?
The pawn ending is tricky with little time on the clock, but Black is in control as he corrals the white c-pawn. 38...Rxc6 39.bxc6 Ke6 40.Kc3 Kd6 41.Kd4 Kxc6 42.Ke5 Kc5 43.g4
[43...fxg4 44.Kxe4 Kd6 45.Kf4 h5 would be a winning position with the extra pawn. Now Black gets the wrong side of a two pawn each ending.] 44.gxf5 gxf5 45.Kxf5 Kd3 46.Kf4
Black gets in zugszwang after 46...h5 47. h4 The rest is easy 46...Kc4 47.Kxe4 Kc5 48.Kf5 Kd6 49.e4 Ke7 50.Ke5 Kf7 51.Kd6 Ke8 52.Ke6 Kf8 53.Kd7 Kf7 54.e5 1-0
SwissSys Standings. Sep-Oct 2021 Tuesday Night Marathon: 1800
SwissSys Standings. Sep-Oct 2021 Tuesday Night Marathon: Under 1800
SwissSys Standings. Sep-Oct 2021 Tuesday Night Marathon: Extra Game
JJ Dolan Memorial Report
There were 56 players in the JJ Dolan Memorial held on Saturday October 2nd, which was a four-round G/45;d5 USCF rated tournament. In the top section, Abhishek Mallela dominated the day, scoring a perfect 4/4 to win the top section by a full point. Rithwik Narendra, Nathan Yan, and Luke Widjaja shared a tie for 2nd with 3/4.
In the bottom section, Arjun Sankar was able to take sole 1st place in a 37-player section, not an easy feat with 4 rounds. He went 4/4, with Arjun Varavan and Yuelin Shi tying for 2nd with 3.5/4.
Congratulations to all the winners and special thank you to all the participants for another amazing weekend turnout!
SwissSys Standings. Dolan Memorial Championship: 1800+
SwissSys Standings. Dolan Memorial Championship: Under1800
Mechanics' October Championship Quads Report
We held a 20-player championship quads on Sunday October 3rd. We again had strong competition at the top, and well balanced quads through every section. Full results can be found here: http://www.uschess.org/msa/XtblMain.php?202110037972-30293415
Mechanics' Institute Thursday Night Chess Triathlon Online Rapid Leg Week 1
We had the first leg of the first ever Mechanics' Institute Thursday Night Online Chess Triathlon, a staged tournament that will incorporate three different formats into a cumulative-score, open event. With rapid, blitz, and Fischer random legs, the overall winner will have to navigate through different skill sets and time controls to come out on top. The format has six games of rapid, 10 games of blitz, and six games of Fischer random, held over three weeks with points accumulating for standings. We held the rapid leg on Thursday night, and the action was on!
The Mechanics' Institute chess team were all on the broadcast for the first ever Thursday Night Online Chess Triathlon
We have 16 players participating in this experiment, and what really makes the event fun to watch is that it is made of of club players. The event is wide open and up for grabs, with no clear favorite. We expect fortunes could chaneg from week to week. We saw fortunes suddenly change in some of the games we watched. After the rapid leg, Adam Mercado leads the field with 5.5/6. Mark Drury is in clear 2nd place with 5/6 and Mansoor Mohammad is in 3rd with 4.5/6. Lots of chess left to go however, with 10 rounds of blitz next week followed by 6 rounds of Fischer random.
Here are the standings from the rapid leg, these scores will carry over into next week: https://www.chess.com/tournament/live/mi-online-triathlon----rapid-leg-2652021
Watch the fun broadcast here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kDQAOr4TL5A&t=25s
Here is a game from the evening between the leaders, annotated by GM Nick de Firmian:
(6) Casimir Dudek (Thechesskid2021) (1899) - Adam Mercado (A-boy415) (1921) [B33]
Live Chess Chess.com, 08.10.2021
1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 e5 6.Ndb5 d6 7.f3 An unusual move for White in this variation. 7...a6 8.Na3 b5 9.Nd5 Nxe4?+/-
An exciting but bad reaction to White's unusual line. [Black can get easy equality with 9...Nxd5 10.exd5 Nd4 11.Bd3 g6 12.0-0 Bg7 13.Be3 0-0 14.c3 Nf5 15.Bf2 Bd7 16.c4 Nd4 17.cxb5 Bxb5 18.Nxb5 axb5 19.Bxd4 exd4] 10.fxe4 Qh4+ 11.Kd2 Qxe4 12.Nc7+
This may be good but it is complicated. [12.Qf3! is the simplest way to get a clear advantage for White.] 12...Kd8 13.Nxa8 g6!?
[Black could get material back with 13...Qf4+ 14.Ke1 Qh4+ 15.g3 Qe4+ 16.Qe2 Qxh1 17.Qg2 Qxg2 18.Bxg2 Bb7 19.Nb6 though that is clearly better and easy to play for White] 14.Qf3??-/+
Going from a winning position to a losing one. [14.Qe2 gives the white king safe haven on the back rank] 14...Bh6+ 15.Kd1 Bg4!
the black bishops take the critical diagonals 16.Bxh6 Bxf3+ 17.Kd2 Bxg2 18.Bg5+ Kc8 19.Be3 Bxh1 20.Nb6+ Kd8 21.Bd3 Qb4+ 22.c3 Qxb2+ 23.Nc2
Black has a clearly winning material advantage, but there are a lot of white minor pieces and so tricks can occur. 23...e4 24.Be2 Bf3 25.Bf1 Ne5 26.Bg5+ Kc7 27.Nd5+ Kb8 28.Be7 Rc8!?
still very winning but tactical 29.Bxd6+ Kb7 30.Bxe5 Rd8!
the pin on the d-line decides 31.c4 Qxe5 32.Rb1 Ka7 33.Ncb4
still fighting! Where there are knights that fork there is hope. 33...e3+ 34.Ke1 Rxd5?
This is still winning but now it is a fight. 34...Qxh2 would have been quick 35.Nc6+ Kb6 36.Nxe5 Rxe5 37.cxb5
It almost looks as if White is alright, but 37...e2! 38.bxa6+ Kxa6 39.Bh3 Rd5
The threat of ...Rd1 is too much. 40.Bc8+ Ka5 41.Kf2 Rd1
There is no way out. The rest of the game needs no comment. 42.Kxf3 e1Q 43.Rb2 Rd3+ 44.Kg2 Rd2+ 45.Rxd2 Qxd2+ 46.Kg3 Qc3+ 47.Kf2 Qxc8 48.h3 Qxh3 49.Ke2 Kb4 50.a4 Kxa4 51.Kd2 Qf3 52.Kc2 Qe3 53.Kb2 Qd3 54.Ka2 Qe2+ 55.Kb1 Kb3 56.Ka1 Qa2# 0-1
Tony challenges you to solve this problem, white to move and mate in 3.