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Friday, February 23, 2024

Gustavus Reichhelm and Hardman Mongomery

The American Civil War, which took place from April 12, 1861 to April 9, 1865, naturally resulted in a cultural life in both the North and the South that was greatly distinct from life in the antebellum years. 
    Newspapers often featured reports directly from the battlefield and photography, a relatively new development, brought the horrific imagery of the war into people’s homes. 
    One development in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania during that time were “sanitary fairs”. These fairs were patriotic, voluntary affairs and they climaxed with the Great Central Fair of 1864 in Logan Square in the city. It provided a creative and communal way for ordinary citizens to promote the welfare of Union soldiers.
    Sanitary fairs were civilian organized bazaars and expositions dedicated to raising funds and supplies for the United States Sanitary Commission and other charitable relief organizations. 
    The Sanitary Commission was the only civilian run organization recognized by the federal government. It offered assistance to the military. Civilian volunteers advised on the physical and mental health of the military, assisted in organizing military hospitals and camps and aided in the transportation of the wounded. They also distributed medical supplies, food and clothing where needed. 
    Naturally, in 1864 there was not a lot of chess activity, but in January the Philadelphia Chess Club defeated the Paulsen Chess Club in New York in a one game telegraph match. 
    In June 1864, former Union Captain George H. Mackenzie (1837-1891), who was born in Scotland and moved to the US in 1863, became a Captain in the 10th United States Colored Troops Regiment. Then in June of 1864, he was declared a deserter, was arrested and forfeited all pay and allowances. He was released from prison in May, 1865, and moved to New York and started playing chess. By 1867, he was US champion. 
    A prominent Philadelphia player of the era was Gustav Reichelm (1839-1905). Besides being a strong player, he was a journalist and composer who also stood out as an analyst. Chess metrics estimates his highest ever rating to have been 2363 in 1869 and his best ever world rank to have been number 5 (behind Berthold Suhlem Wilhelm Steinitz, Hans von Minckwitz and Philipp Hirschfeld), but needles to say information upon which to estimate ratings was scant in those days. 
    He was a specialist also in Pawn endings and he published a famous study with Emanuel Lasker with whom he was very friendly and with whom he used to play and analyze. He was editor of Brentano Chess Monthly and for the Philadelphia Evening Bulletin. 
    Reichelm was born in Prussia. He and his brother Frederic began their studies at the Gymnasium (a preparatory school) previous to their father' s death in 1816. Gustavus remained at the Gymnasium until he was qualified to pursue his studies at the University of Halle where he studied law. 
    He came to the United States in about 1831 and made the acquaintance of a couple of homeopathic doctors in Allentown. Pennsylvania at what was the first homeopathic college in the country. He studied there and from that time until his death he was an ardent disciple of Homeopathy
    He commenced practicing in Hamburg, Pennsylvania, but on the advice of his mentor he moved to Pittsburgh in 1837 where he enjoyed great success. In 1853, much to the regret of his friends in Pittsburgh, he moved to Philadelphia. 
    His opponent in the following amusing game was Hardman Montgomery (1834-1870), the youngest son of John C. Montgomery, formerly Postmaster of Philadelphia. 

    After entering the University of Pennsylvania as a Sophomore in 1851, Montgomery's talent for chess and mathematics was soon spotted by one of his professors. 
    From 1852 onward, Montgomery quickly rose among the ranks of local players and was a member of the successful Philadelphia team beating New York in two correspondence games in 1855-1856. 
    Montgomery was the sole Philadelphia representative in the 1st American Chess Congress held in New York in 1857. It was a knockout tournament and Montgomery defeated his first round opponent, William S Allison, but lost the next round to Louis Paulsen. 
    Because of the popularity of Paul Morphy the Philadelphia Chess Club was founded and Montgomery became its first President. 
    In 1861, after losing a match against New York's Theodore Lichtenhein (+2 -7 =1), Montgomery practically retired from serious chess. However, he did later defeat James A. Leonard (+8 -4 =2) in 1861 and lost a match Reichhelm (+4 -8 =0 in 1864. 
    Montgomery resided in Philadelphia and New York and practiced law for a time in Pennsylvania. Eventually he moved to California. On Christmas day in 1869 he was struck with paralysis and then on January 22, 1870, at the age of 34, he suffered a fatal stroke. He died in Marysville, California. 
    The game given here was not very well played. In fact, Reichhelm was losing, but Montgomery let him get away. 

A game that I liked (Fritz 17)

[Event "Philadelphia"] [Site "Philadelphia"] [Date "1864.??.??"] [Round "?"] [White "Hardman Montgomery"] [Black "Gustavus Reichhelm"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "C44"] [Annotator "Stockfish 16"] [PlyCount "54"] [EventDate "1864.??.??"] {C44: Scotch Gambit} 1. e4 e5 {[%mdl 32]} 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 {This opening was analyzed as far back as 1750 and received the name Scotch Game fromm a correspondence match in 1824 between Edinburgh and London. It remained popular in the 1800s, but by 1900 it was considered to give b;ack easy equality. In modern times Garry Kasparov and Jan Timman used it occasionally as a surprise} exd4 4. Bd3 {Very passive. 4.Nxd4 or 4.Bc4 are usually played.} Bc5 5. c3 { Offering a P after playing the passive 4.Bd3 may not seem logical, but in doing so white frees up his game.} (5. Nbd2 Qe7 6. Nb3 Bb6 7. a3 d6 8. Bd2 Bg4 9. O-O {Black is better. Scherbakova,G-Kozhukina,E Odessa 2008}) 5... dxc3 6. O-O {Equally good was 6.Nxc3, but he offer of another P is also quite playable. } Nge7 (6... cxb2 7. Bxb2 Nf6 8. e5 {allows white plenty of play and black's attacked N has no really good square to retreat to.}) 7. e5 {This is less effective with black's N on e7 because now the Ps advance does not gain a tempo. Better was 7.Nxc3} O-O {Castling at this point is risky because defend ing against the coming attack will require precision.} (7... cxb2 {While this might look risky it would leave black with the advantage.} 8. Bxb2 d5 (8... O-O 9. Bxh7+ Kxh7 {Better is 9...Kh8, but white has a very promising position.} 10. Ng5+ {wins}) 9. exd6 Qxd6 {White does not have quite enough compensation for the two Ps.}) (7... d5 {This is simply a transposition.} 8. exd6 cxb2 9. Bxb2 Qxd6 {with the same position as after 7...cxb2}) 8. Bxh7+ {Of course! Black can survive this, but accurate defense is a must.} Kxh7 {Forced.} (8... Kh8 9. Ng5 g6 (9... Ng8 10. Bxg8 Kxg8 11. Qh5 {wins}) 10. Qf3 Nf5 11. Bxg6 {wins. Just one line...} Kg7 12. Bxf5 Nxe5 13. Qg3 Ng6 14. Bxg6 fxg6 15. Qxc3+ Kg8 16. Qxc5) 9. Ng5+ Kg6 {This is the right square for the K. White has no forced win IF black accurately defends.} (9... Kg8 {would lose.} 10. Qh5 Re8 11. Qh7+ Kf8 12. Qh8+ Ng8 13. Nh7+ Ke7 14. Bg5+ f6 15. exf6+ Ke6 (15... Nxf6 16. Qxg7+ Kd6 17. Nxc3 Nd4 18. Bxf6 Ne6 19. Qg3+ Kc6 20. b4 b6 21. Bxd8 Rxd8 22. bxc5 {wins}) 16. f7 Kxf7 17. Bxd8 $18) 10. Qd3+ Nf5 (10... f5 {was a better defense.} 11. exf6+ Nf5 12. fxg7 Kxg7 13. Qh3 Qe7 14. Nxc3 Kg8 15. Nd5 Qg7 {In Shootouts from this position white scored +1 -0 =4, so black has reasonable drawing chances.}) 11. g4 d6 {The correct move here and the one that results in equality is 11...d5. As will be seen, the reason is that 11...d5 makes e4 inaccessible to white's N.} (11... d5 12. gxf5+ Bxf5 13. Qg3 Kh5 14. Nxc3 f6 15. exf6 gxf6 16. Nh3 Rg8) 12. gxf5+ Bxf5 13. Qg3 {Threatening Ne6+} Kh5 { The safest square for the K, but white is clearly better.} 14. Nxc3 f6 (14... Nxe5 15. Nd5 Nd3 16. Nh3 Nxc1 17. Qxg7 Bg6 18. Nf6+ Kh4 19. Qh6+ Bh5 20. Qxh5#) (14... dxe5 15. Kh1 f6 16. Nge4 Bxe4+ 17. Nxe4 g5 18. Qf3+ Kg6 19. Nxc5 { is decisive.}) 15. Nce4 {[%mdl 8192] Wrong N!! This is a losing blunder.} (15. Nge4 {Had black's P been on d5 (see move 11) this would not have been. possible. White is now winning.} Bxe4 16. Nxe4 Qe7 17. Kh1 Qxe5 18. Qf3+ Kg6 19. Bf4 Qe6 20. Rg1+ Kf7 21. Nxc5) 15... fxg5 16. Bxg5 Qe8 {After this black's advantage is not so great, but the better Q sacrifice would not be so clear over the board!} (16... Nd4 {is another story.} 17. Rfe1 Bxe4 18. Bxd8 Nf3+ 19. Kf1 Bd3+ 20. Re2 Raxd8 21. Rd1 Bxe2+ 22. Kxe2 g5 {Black's advantage should prove decisive.}) 17. Nxc5 {[%mdl 8192] After this white loses quickly.} (17. Rae1 {puts up stouter resistance.} Bd4 18. Bf4 Qg6 {Black is better.}) 17... dxc5 18. Kh1 Qxe5 {Black is clearly winning.} 19. f4 Be4+ 20. Kg1 Qd4+ 21. Rf2 Ne5 {[%mdl 32] The N joins the attack.} 22. Qh3+ Kg6 {The strong threat is ... Nf3_} 23. Qe6+ Rf6 24. Bxf6 Nf3+ 25. Kf1 {White wants to mate with Rg2+.} Qd3+ {Correct!} (25... gxf6 {is a self mate.} 26. Rg2+ Kh5 27. Qh3+ Nh4 28. Qg4+ Kh6 29. Qxh4#) 26. Kg2 Ng5+ 27. Kg1 Nh3+ {White resigned.} (27... Nh3+ 28. Qxh3 Qxh3 {Stockfish informs us that there is a mate in 21 moves!} 29. Bd4 Qg4+ 30. Kf1 cxd4 31. Re1 Bd3+ 32. Ree2 Bxe2+ 33. Rxe2 Qf3+ 34. Ke1 Qxf4 35. Kd1 d3 36. Re1 Qf3+ 37. Kd2 Qf2+ 38. Kc3 Qc2+ 39. Kd4 Rd8+ 40. Ke3 Qc5+ 41. Kf3 Rf8+ 42. Ke4 Re8+ 43. Kxd3 Rd8+ 44. Ke2 Qe5+ 45. Kf1 Rf8+ 46. Kg2 Qxe1 47. h4 Qe2+ 48. Kg3 Rf3+ 49. Kg4 Qg2#) 0-1

Thursday, February 22, 2024

A Lucky Escape For Fischer

The following game against Benko in round 22 of the 1962 Candidates tournament in Willemstad, Curacao was a lucky escape for Fischer. 
    Dutch GM Jan Timman was an excellent analyst and his book Curacao 1962 - The Battle of Minds That Shook the Chess World is a great work, but many of the games were lightly annotated, as was this one, and in some cases he did not give any analysis to support his statements. Benko also went over this game in front of an audience ans some of his analysis was also faulty. 
    The days are long gone when simply having a title was sufficient to intimidate us non-GMs into believing that a move was good or bad just because they said so! That does not to take anything away from their accomplishments though because they are miles ahead of the rest of us in their chess skill! These days though a good engine can see more in a few seconds than they ever could. 
    In the tournament Benko was involved in a couple of controversies. This was the tournament where he slapped Fischer in an argument over the use of the one second, Arthur Bisguier, that was available to both of the US players. Benko was also involved in a brouhaha involving Paul Keres.

    Benko played a decisive role in destroying Keres' chances of winning the tournament. Keres had beaten Benko 4-0 in the 1959 candidates and in Curacao he was on his way to repeating the performance. Then came the 20th round (out of 28). 
    Keres slipped up and came within a hair of losing, but managed to escape with a win in a mutual time scramble. Benko, right when he had a perpetual check, knocked over a couple of pieces and exceeded the time limit while putting them back. That was the bare bones story, but it wasn't so simple. 
    Keres had been the hunt for first place for the whole tournament and his slide began with the Benko game. In horrible time pressure Benko incorrectly sacrificed a piece which left him with nothing better than the perpetual check. With only seconds left on his clock, Benko made the move that forced the perpetual, but his piece was sitting slightly off the square. After he made the move and punched his clock, Keres immediately punched it back and told Benko, ”Adjust your pieces!” Surprised, Benko let his clock run a second or two before desperately trying to adjust his pieces, but it was too late; his flag fell and he was forfeited. 
    Although angry, Benko didn't complain and wrote that he thought to himself that he was going to extract revenge by beating Keres when they met again. Then came their final game. It was one of the most important in Keres' career because he was still in the hunt for first. A draw would allow him to conduct a playoff against Petrosian to see who played Botvinnik for the World Championship; a win would make him the outright challenger. 
    In that final game between the two, the game was adjourned with Benko a bit better. Benko wrote in Pal Benko: My Life, Games, and Compositions that Petrosian and Geller secretly came to him with an offer to help him win the adjourned game against Keres. Benko claimed that he was disgusted by their actions and told them the game would be a draw with best play and demanded that they leave. However, when play resumed Keres made a mistake and lost. That was Benko's story. 
    In his book Timman told it a little differently. Timman reported that it was Korchnoi and Averbach (one of the Soviet contingent) who had paid Benko the visit and given him some analysis. Benko didn't really need their analysis because he was already one of the world's foremost endgame experts. 
    Then came the last round and Petrosian was white against Filip who was mired in last place while Keres was playing Fischer. Everything was in Petrosian's favor and it was generally conceded that he would be the winner, but he could only draw with Filip and Keres yielded a draw to Fischer. 
    There was one game left, Geller vs. Benko, and if Geller won he would tie with Keres for second place. In trying to win, Geller overreached and adjourned in a lost position. Play resumed the next day and Benko, again in time pressure, had to make three moves before the end of the time control and ended up losing on time. 
    As a result, Keres had to play a match (which he won) with Geller to determine second place. Later, Keres claimed that Benko had deliberately lost, in Keres's words, "just to screw me.” Benko claimed that he would never had done such a thing. 

  A game that I liked (Fritz 17)

[Event "Curacao Candidates"] [Site "Willemstad CUW"] [Date "1962.06.14"] [Round "22"] [White "Robert Fischer"] [Black "Pal Benko"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "C11"] [Annotator "Stockfish 16"] [PlyCount "61"] [EventDate "1962.05.02"] {C11: French Defense} 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. e5 {Fischer always had trouble against the French defense. In fact, he suffered his first loss in a US Championship when Edmar Mednis created a sensation by defeating Fischer and he used the French to do it. Earlier in this tournament Fischer had played the classical 4. Bg5 against Petrosian and Benko, but didn’t get any advantage, so here he tries something different.} Nfd7 5. f4 {Steinitz introduced this move with the idea of supporting the e5 Pawn.} c5 6. dxc5 {Nobody plays this any more. The preferred move is 6.Nf3} Bxc5 7. Qg4 {This move used to be played by Tarrasch and Janowski back in their day. The fact that it is still considered best shows that they understood something about chess.} (7. Nf3 { Looks good, but it does mot worl out well after} Nc6 8. Bd3 a6 {and it’s hard to suggest a good plan for white.}) 7... O-O 8. Bd3 f5 $15 (8... Qe7 9. Nf3 f6 10. Qh4 g6 11. exf6 Nxf6 {White stands slightly better. Gulamali,K (2307)-Kaufman,L (2360) Internet Chess Club INT 2012}) 9. Qh3 Bxg1 {What’s with this rather surprising move?! You have to back to Monte Carlo, 1901 where Alapin played it against Janowski. Black’s move seemingly makes no sense because he trades a developed piece for an undeveloped one. The idea is that black will get very active piece play.} (9... Nc6 10. Nf3 Be7 11. Be3 Nc5 12. Nd4 Nxd3+ 13. cxd3 {is equal. Ovetchkin,R (2485)-Baranyai,S (2270) Rotterdam 1998}) 10. Rxg1 Nc5 {[%mdl 32]} 11. Bd2 {One annotator claimed that Fischer was likely familiar with the Janowski - Alapin game and since white didn’t get anything special with 11.g4 Fischer had prepared this as an improvement. Fischer had a lot of knowledge of old games, but it might be a stretch to say he was familiar with that game. A more logical explanation might be that Fischer simply understood the position and realized that a sudden unsupported attack won’t lead to anything, so he stuck with the basics...develop your pieces.} (11. g4 {Aggressive and quite playable.} Nxd3+ 12. cxd3 Nc6 13. gxf5 Rxf5 14. Bd2 a6 15. O-O-O {with equal chances. Janowski,D-Alapin,S Monte Carlo 1901}) 11... Nc6 {There is nothing wrong with 11...Nxd3+ White could choose either 12. Qxd3 or 12.cxd3 and again, neither side has much to work with. Also, because the idea of black’s 9th move is active piece play he does not want to exchange his only developed piece.} 12. Nb5 {This move was soundly criticized for being too optimistic and 12.O-O-O with equality was recommended instead. Is that a correct assessment? Stockfish does, indeed, recommend 12. O-O-O and evaluates the position as ever so slightly in white’s favor and after 12. Nb5 the evaluation drops a couple of hundredths, so you would think there just can’t be that much difference in the two moves. Besides, Fischer gets his N on the excellent square d6. Sometimes GMs take into account nuances that engines don’t!} Qb6 13. O-O-O Bd7 {Threatens 14...Nxe5} 14. Nd6 { One commentator observed that this looks like an ideal square for the N, but it’s not because on d6 it has no effect on the game whereas if it was back on c3 it could be used to defend against black’s attack that is now probably near decisive. Engines think the position is almostr deafd equal.} (14. Kb1 { A pass to demonstrate the threat.} Nxe5 15. fxe5 Bxb5) 14... Na4 {It was suggested that the point to this is that white can’t play the natural defense 15.b3...or so it was thought before engines. GM Jan Timman called it “vicious.” While it is the best move, it’s hardly vicious.} 15. Bb5 (15. b3 {is a perfectly satisfactory defense. For example...} Qd4 {As per the great Dutch GM Timman who claimed white gets annihilated after this, but he didn’t give any followup.} 16. c3 Nxc3 17. Bxc3 Qxc3+ 18. Kb1 Nb4 {...and here is why there is nothing wrong with 15.b3...} 19. Bxf5 Qxh3 20. Bxh3 Rxf4 21. Nxb7 { Black's attack is at and end and the position offers equal chances.}) 15... Nd4 {[%mdl 128] This is interesting. Forty years later at an Open tournament in Curacao, no less, Benko was showing this game to an audience and claimed he could have gotten a huge advantage with 15.. .Nxb2, but in the game he decided to launch an even sharper attack. The fact is, had he played 15...Nxb2 he might very well have lost!} (15... Nxb2 16. Kxb2 a6 (16... Nxe5 {This loses after} 17. fxe5 Bxb5 18. Qb3 a6 19. Be3) 17. g4 {White must counterattack as quickly as possible.} axb5 18. gxf5 Qc5 19. a3 exf5 20. Qc3 {Black has no attacvk and white has the better position.}) 16. Be3 Ne2+ {The point of his previous move...the attack on b2 is intensified.} 17. Bxe2 {[%mdl 8192] Is this forced? It's not and it's bad enough to merit teo question marks!} (17. Kb1 {No. This is the crucial defense. Black is now at a crossroads. Take the exchange or complicate the issue with 17...d4.} d4 {The right choice.} 18. Bxa4 Bxa4 19. Bf2 Rac8 {with a strong attack.}) 17... Qxb2+ {To quote Fritz 17's commentary, Black is clearly winning. To quote the legendary New York Yankee catcher Yogi Berra, It ain't over til it's over.} 18. Kd2 Qb4+ 19. Kc1 { Benko could have taken a draw here, but of course, here he has a winning advantage; over four Ps according to Stockfish. The problem is, time pressure is looming.} Nc3 {Attacking the q-Pawn, R and B.} 20. Rde1 Nxa2+ 21. Kd1 Nc3+ 22. Kc1 d4 {One annotator mistakenly gave this move a question mark and recommended the somewhat weaker 22...a5. Actually, black has several ways to win. Black has to play this move at some point anyway.} 23. Bf2 (23. Bxd4 { was a stronger defense.} Na2+ 24. Kd1 Qxd4+ 25. Qd3 Qxf4 26. Bf3 {but even here black has a decisive advantage.}) 23... Rfc8 {[%mdl 544] A fine concept. The purpose is not to put pressure on the c-Pawn, but to transfer the R to the a-file.} 24. Bd3 (24. Nxc8 Qa3+ 25. Kd2 Ne4+ 26. Kd1 Qa1#) 24... Na2+ 25. Kd1 Nc3+ 26. Kc1 Rc5 {More controversy between annotators! One gave this move a questions mark claiming it wasn’t his best option. Timman gave it a ! saying Benko breathes new life into his attack. What does Stockfish say? Benko’s move is perfectly good.} 27. Qh4 {Timman wrote that despite his awkward situation Fischer defends as stubbornly as possible. This move provides extra cover for his B on f2 and allows his K to escape via d2 without running the risk of being mated at once. That said, Benko is clearly winning,} (27. g4 { was the only other plausible try, but after} Ra5 28. Bxd4 Ra1+ 29. Kd2 Ne4+ 30. Ke2 Qd2+ 31. Kf3 Rxe1 {the game is over.}) 27... Ra5 28. Kd2 {Oddly, black has no effective discovered check because doing so would allow the K to slip away to safety.} h6 {[%mdl 8192] With this terrible move, probably as a result of time pressure, Benko turns the tables on himself! His plan was to play 29... Ne4 and 30...g5, but this is way too slow. There’s no direct mate here, so the positional move 28...Bc6! keeps Fischer’s K in the center of the board where it remains in grave danger.} (28... Ne4+ 29. Ke2 Ra3 30. Kf1 {and white is suddenly in a position to start a counterattack on the K-side.} Nxd6 { results in head whirling complications that should eventually favor white. but that evaluation is theoretical.} 31. exd6 Qxd6 32. g4) (28... Ra2 {Black has no forced win, but by keeping up the pressure he can continue to make white's life very difficult.} 29. g4 Bc6 30. Bxd4 Nb5+ (30... Qxd4 {would lose.} 31. gxf5 Ne4+ 32. Nxe4 Bxe4 33. Rxg7+ Kxg7 34. Qe7+ Kh8 35. Qf6+ Kg8 36. Qxe6+ Kf8 37. Qf6+ Ke8 38. Qh8+ Ke7 39. Qxh7+ Ke8 40. Qh8+ Ke7 41. Qh4+ Kd7 42. Rxe4 Qd5 43. Qh7+ Kc6 44. Qg6+ {White wins.}) 31. Ke2 Nxd4+ 32. Kf1 Nf3 {wins for black. }) 29. g4 {[%cal Rg4f5] This sudden counterattack leaves black busted.} fxg4 ( 29... Ne4+ {comes up short, The complications are enorrnous and in the end white is left with a theoretically won position, but practically speaking it's probably black's best chance.} 30. Ke2 Qd2+ 31. Kf1 Qxf4 32. gxf5 Nd2+ 33. Ke2 Rxe5+ 34. Kd1 Rxe1+ 35. Rxe1 Qxd6 36. Kxd2) 30. Rxg4 (30. Qxg4 {is a self mate. } Ne4+ 31. Ke2 Qd2+ 32. Kf3 Qxf2+ 33. Kxe4 Bc6#) 30... Kh8 (30... Kf8 31. Rxg7 Nb1+ (31... Kxg7 32. Rg1+ {mate next move.}) 32. Ke2 Qd2+ 33. Kf3 {Black can delay, but not prevent mater.} Qxd3+ 34. cxd3 Bc6+ 35. Kg4 Kxg7 36. Qe7+ Kh8 37. Kh5 Rxe5+ 38. Rxe5 Be8+ 39. Kxh6 Bf7 40. Qxf7 {mate next move.}) 31. Qxh6+ {[%mdl 512] Black resigned.} (31. Qxh6+ gxh6 32. Nf7#) 1-0

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

A Queen Sacrifice Wins for Richter

The chess news of the year 1937 started off with Alekhine winning the Hasting tournament in January. The biggest news of the year probably occurred on December 16th when Alekhine defeated Euwe to regain the World Championship.
    In August the 7th Chess Olympiad was held in Stockholm. The USA team (Samuel Reshevsky, Reuben Fine, Isaac Kashdan, Frank Marshall and I.A, Horowitz) took first place. The US team had also won in 1931, 1933 and 1935. Hungary. Poland was second and Poland was third. 
    Back in the 1930s alternatives to over the board play were postal chess, radio, telegraph matches and telephone matches. 
    Rotary dial phones were introduced to Americans in 1919, but they did not become widely used until the mid-1950's. Prior to the rotary phone a caller simply lifted the receiver off the hook and an operator answered with the phrase, “Number, please.” You then told her the number you wanted. In my home town our phone number was simply 2271. Older phones had magnetos; callers signaled the operator by turning a crank. 
    In April 10, of 1937, Berlin and Hamburg played a telephone match about which almost nothing is known, However, I did discover the results of the match on the wonderful Edo Historical Chess Ratings site HERE

    The winner of the following game who played on board 2 of that natch was Kurt Richter (1900-1969), a very a sharp attacking player and theoretician. After World War II he largely gave up playing for writing. He was co-editor of Deutsche Schachblatter and Deutsche Schachzeitung. He was also the author of several chess books. 
    His opponent was Heinrich Reinhardt (1902-1990) who later became known as Enrique Reinhardt. When World War II broke out, Reinhardt, along with other German players Erich Eliskases, Paul Michel, Ludwig Engels, Albert Becker and many other participants at the 1939 Olympiad, decided to permanently remain in Argentina. He died on June 14, 1990 in Ciudad Jardín Lomas del Palomar, Argentina. 
    What’s pleasing about this game is that even though it’s tactically faulty, on move 34 Richter makes a delightful Queen sacrifice that leads to a mate in 7. 

  A game that I liked (Fritz 17)

[Event "Telephone Match Berlin-Hamburg"] [Site "Telephone match Berlin-Hamburg"] [Date "1937.04.10"] [Round "?"] [White "Kurt Richter (Berlin)"] [Black "Heinrich Reinhardt (Hamburg)"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "A45"] [Annotator "Stockfish 16"] [PlyCount "71"] [EventDate "1937.??.??"] {D01: Richter-Veresov Attack} 1. d4 Nf6 2. Nc3 d5 3. Bg5 {This opening is named after Richter and Soviet master Gavriil Veresov, who played it frequently for over a quarter of a century. In modern times Spassky, Tal, Smyslov, Larsen and Bronstein experimented with it. Black has a wide choice of replies while white's plan plans typically include rapid Q-side castling and an early f3 and e4.} Bf5 4. e3 e6 5. Bd3 Bg6 6. Nf3 Be7 (6... c5 7. Ne5 Nc6 8. Nxc6 bxc6 9. O-O cxd4 10. exd4 Qb6 11. Rb1 Be7 12. Ne2 {Draw agreed. Mestrovic, Z (2410)-Komljenovic,D (2435) Sibenik 1986}) (6... Nbd7 7. O-O Be7 8. Bxf6 gxf6 9. e4 c6 {is equal. Guerreiro,N (2086)-Stopa,J (2524) Figueira da Foz POR 2014} ) 7. Ne5 Bxd3 8. cxd3 {The position is equal.} (8. Qxd3 O-O 9. f4 c5 10. O-O-O c4 11. Qe2 b5 12. Nxb5 Qa5 13. Nc3 Bb4 14. Bxf6 gxf6 15. Qg4+ Kh8 16. Qh4 fxe5 17. Qf6+ Kg8 18. Qg5+ {Draw agreed. Lenhardt,M (2148)-Zilverberg,J (2015) Maastricht 2009}) 8... O-O 9. O-O Nfd7 10. Bf4 Nxe5 11. dxe5 c5 12. e4 d4 ( 12... dxe4 {is wilder.} 13. Qg4 Kh8 14. Nxe4 Nc6 {with fully equal chances.}) 13. Ne2 Nc6 14. Bg3 Re8 15. f4 $15 Bf8 {Instead of this rather passive move the immediate 15...b5 was good.} 16. Qe1 b5 17. Bh4 Be7 {As will soon be seen the exchange of dark squared Ns results in a weakness on the dark squares around the K. Better was 17...Qc7} 18. Bxe7 Qxe7 19. Ng3 g6 {This is not really bad because the position can still be evaluated as equal, but something like 19...Nb4 would have been better.} 20. Nh1 {The N begins a journey to g4 from where it eyes f6 and h6.} c4 {And now ...Nb4 would win.} 21. Nf2 Nb4 22. Ng4 Nxd3 (22... Nc2 23. Nf6+ Qxf6 24. exf6 Nxe1 25. Rfxe1 {is also equal.}) 23. Qg3 {White has sufficient compensation for the P.} Rec8 24. f5 exf5 (24... Nxb2 {There is no time for this.} 25. Nh6+ Kf8 26. fxg6 Ke8 27. Rxf7) 25. exf5 Kh8 26. f6 {With this move Richter has made a slip that should have allowed black to gain the advantage! Correct was 26.fxe6. In all likelihood black would have managed to survive the attack.} Qf8 (26... Qe6 {leaves white with no satisfactory way of continuing the attack.} 27. h3 Rc5 {and it's white who is on the defensive.}) 27. Rf3 {Another tactical mistake, this time of a more serious nature.} (27. e6 {keeps up the pressure and would have required precise defense from black.} fxe6 28. a4 {Excellent! White can make no immediate progress on the K-side and so switches to the Q-side and center.} b4 29. b3 e5 30. bxc4 e4 31. Rad1 {With careful play black can successfully defend his position.}) 27... Nc5 (27... Nxb2 {would be a blunder, After} 28. e6 fxe6 29. Ne5 {and after Raf1 white's superiority should prove decisive.}) 28. Qh4 Ne6 29. Rh3 h5 30. Rf1 {At this point black is oblivious to white's threat of 31.Rf5! While he can't prevent it he can render it innocuous.} d3 {[%mdl 8192] Wrong Pawn advance! This one loses.} (30... c3 {Right Pawn advance. This one wins.} 31. Nf2 (31. Rf5 Nf4 32. Rxf4 c2 33. Rf1 c1=Q 34. Rxc1 Rxc1+ { and black is winning.}) 31... c2 {with a decisive advantage.} 32. Nd3 Qh6 33. Qe1 Rc4 34. Qc1 Qxc1 35. Rxc1) 31. Rf5 {This renders black defenseless.} Qc5+ 32. Kf1 Nf4 33. Rxf4 (33. Rxh5+ {[%mdl 512] mates in 7} Nxh5 34. Qg5 Kg8 35. Rxh5 Qf8 36. Nh6+ Kh7 37. Nxf7+ gxh5 38. Qxh5+ Kg8 39. Qg6+ Qg7 40. Qxg7#) 33... d2 {This allows mate in 7, but avoiding the forced mate with 33...Kg8 still loses.} 34. Qxh5+ {[%mdl 512] White mates.} gxh5 35. Rxh5+ Kg8 36. Ne3 { [%mdl 512] Black resigned.} (36. Ne3 d1=Q+ 37. Nxd1 Qd4 (37... c3 38. Rg4+ Kf8 39. Rh8#) 38. Rxd4 c3 39. Rg4+ Kf8 40. Rh8#) 1-0

Thursday, February 15, 2024

Marshall’s Worst Tournament?

It came as no surprise when Jose R. Capablanca in win the international tournament at the Hotel Alamac located at 71st and Broadway in New York City. From the beginning Capa was a strong favorite and in the opinion of many it was merely a question as to how far ahead of the field he would finish. He fulfilled predictions by scoring +9 -0 =2. 
    The score doesn’t tell the whole story though because three players could have nicked him for a point! 
    Alexander Kevitz was up a Pawn, but managed to lose. Like a lot of champions Capa was really dangerous when he found himself in a tight place. Dake found this out when he outplayed him, but by a miracle Capa managed to escape. Then in the semi-final round I.S. Turover had a book draw in a R and P ending, but Turover missed the drawing and lost in 75 moves. 
    Isaac Kashdan fulfilled expectations and acquitted himself well by winning six games and drawing five, including one with Capablanca in the last round.
    Although he lost three games, Alexander Kevitz had every reason to be pleased with his score and third place. 

    As for the legendary Frank Marshall, he was lo longer the Frank Marshall of old. The Chessmetrics April 1931 rating list estimates his rating to have been 2596 ranking him number 23 in the world. Capa, at 2775, was number 2 behind Alekhine (2857). Marshall’s highest ever rating is estimated to have been 2762 in 1917 placing him at number 3 behind Lasker and Caoablance. 
    In the following snappy little game Marshal showed his old form when Dake blundered at move 18 and it was all over. A game that I liked (Fritz 17)
[Event "New York Masters Tournament"] [Site "New York, NY USA"] [Date "1931.04.28"] [Round "?"] [White "Frank Marshall"] [Black "Arthur Dake"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "D43"] [Annotator "Stockfish 16"] [PlyCount "45"] [EventDate "1931.04.18"] {D36: Queen's Gambit Declined: Exchange Variation} 1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3 d5 3. c4 c6 4. Nc3 e6 5. Bg5 Nbd7 6. cxd5 {The Exchange Variation strategy is: white has a P-majority in the center and black on the Q-side. Therefore, white can either advance his center Ps by means of Nge2, f2–f3, followed by e2–e4, or play for a minority attack by playing Rb1, followed by b2–b4–b5, then bxc6. This latter plan has the goal of creating wesk Q-side Ps in black's camp. For Black, exchanging at d5 has released his light-squared B and opened the e-file, giving him the use of e4 as a springboard for central and K--side play. Black can use his piece activity to launch a piece attack against white's K.} exd5 7. e3 Be7 8. Qc2 O-O 9. Bd3 Re8 10. O-O h6 11. Bf4 Nf8 12. Rae1 (12. Rfe1 Nh5 13. Be5 Be6 14. h3 Rc8 15. Rad1 {equals. Arutunian,D (2446)-Lagowski,P (2395) Olomouc 2005}) (12. a3 a5 13. Rab1 Bd6 14. Bxd6 Qxd6 15. Na4 N8d7 16. Rbc1 Ne4 17. Bxe4 dxe4 18. Nd2 Qg6 19. f3 Nf6 20. Nb6 Nd5 21. Ndc4 Nxb6 22. Nxb6 { A draw was soon agreed. Foisor,S (2235)-Katz,A (2429) Dulles USA 2019}) 12... Nh5 {Other reasonable moves are 12...a6, 12...Be6 or 12...Ne6} 13. Bg3 Nxg3 $11 14. hxg3 {The position is equal and, truth be told, pretty boring.} Bf6 15. a3 Ne6 16. Ne2 Ng5 {This is not really a bad move, but the N serves little purpose here.} (16... g6 {should be considered.} 17. Nf4 Qd6 {And now white's best idea is to revert to the minority attack with either 18.b4 or 18.Rb1} 18. Bxg6 {as in the game is certainly a possibility, but it's less effective because black's N is not misplaced on g5/} fxg6 19. Qxg6+ Ng7 20. Qxh6) 17. Nd2 Qd6 18. Nf4 {Another option is 18.f5 and the N would have a good post on e5.} g6 {This us nw a fatal error because his N in in a bad position, Both 18...a5 or 18...Bd7 are solid replies.} 19. Bxg6 fxg6 20. Qxg6+ {The difference between this position and the one after 10.Qxg6+ in the note to black's 16th move is that here the N cannot go to g7 which makes all the difference.} Kf8 21. Qxh6+ Ke7 22. e4 {Exposing black's K.} Rh8 (22... dxe4 {was no better.} 23. Nxe4 Nxe4 24. Rxe4+ Kd8 25. Rxe8+ Kxe8 26. Re1+ Kd8 27. d5 {This further exposes the K and there is nothing black can do but await the end.} Be5 28. Qg5+ Bf6 29. Qg6 Be5 30. Qf7 Qf6 (30... Bxf4 31. Re8#) 31. Ne6+ Bxe6 32. dxe6 Qxf7 33. exf7 Ke7 34. Rxe5+ {White has an easy win.} Kxf7) 23. Ng6+ {Dake resigned.} (23. Ng6+ Kd8 24. Nxh8 Qe7 25. e5 Bxh8 26. Qxh8+ Kc7 27. f4 Ne6 28. Nf3 {Black's position is hopeless.}) 1-0

Tuesday, February 13, 2024

Speaking of Quads, Delft 1940

In 1940, chessplayers were dropping like flies. David Przepió\orka,Achilles Frydman, Stanisław Kohn and Moishe Lowtzky, Moshe Hirschbein, Max Walter and Arthur Kaufmann (his date of beath is uncertain, possibkly 1938) all died at the hands of the Nazis. Sammi Fajarowicz died of tuberculosis in a Jewish Hospital in Leipzig. 
    Peter Fyfe died in Glasgow, Frantisek Schubert died in Bohemia, Kalikst Morawski, a Polish master, died probably in Siberia. Willi Schlage, Wilhelm Hilse and Walter John died in Germany. 
    Despite the growing war tensions and the German invasion of the Netherlands in 1940 chess continued to become popular in Holland and there was a steady round of interesting master events that took place. 
    Quite a few of the leading papers published long accounts of all the games of the 1939/40 Keres-Euwe match with each game appearing with detailed notes the day after it was played; Keres won 7.6-6.5. 
    There was a quadrangular tournament held in Delft. The participants were: 

Hans Kmoch (1894-1973), an Austria, Dutch, Aerican IM. After the war was over Kmoch and his wife moved to the United States, settling in New York City. Kmoch served as the Secretary and manager of the Manhattan Chess Club and was a popular columnist for Chess Review magazine. In 1956, he wrote his most famous book, Pawn Power in Chess which, I think, is still worth reading. 
Max Euwe (1901-1981) was world champion from 1935-1937. I am not sure of the year, but sometime in the late 1950s Dr. Euwe visited Cleveland, Ohio and I was pleased to get his autograph; he was a very gracious gentleman. 
Johannes van der Bosch (1906-1994) was a Dutch nobleman, lawyer, banker and chess master. He thrice represented The Netherlands in the Olympiads in the 1930s. He was born in Austria-Hungary and for many years was Holland’s number two players behind Euwe. 
Salo Landau’s story is sickening. Born in Austria-Hungary in 1903, for many tears he was Holland’s leading player behind Euwe. In September 1942, Landau tried to escape the clutches of Nazis by by fleeing to Switzerland with his family, but they were caught on September 28th in Breda, The Netherlands near the border with Belgium and sent to Westerbork transit camp. From there Landau was sent to a concentration camp in Graditz. He died there sometime between December 1943 and 31 March 1944. His wife and young daughter, whose hiding place was betrayed, were sent to Auschwitz in September 1944, where they were gassed on October 12, 1944.

  A game that I liked (Fritz 17)

[Event "Delft"] [Site "?"] [Date "1940.??.??"] [Round "?"] [White "Max Euwe"] [Black "Salo Landau"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B74"] [Annotator "Stockfish 16"] [PlyCount "65"] [EventDate "1940.??.??"] {B74: Sicilian Dragon} 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 g6 6. Be2 Bg7 7. O-O O-O 8. Be3 Nc6 9. f4 Bd7 10. Kh1 Rc8 11. Nb3 a6 12. Bf3 Qc7 ( 12... b5 {as in Anuprita,P (2081)-Foudzi,S (2162) Bikaner 2004 leads to equality after} 13. a3 Be6 14. Nd4 Nxd4 15. Bxd4 Qc7 16. Rf2 Rfd8 17. Rd2 Nd7 18. Bxg7 Kxg7) 13. Nd5 Nxd5 14. exd5 Na5 (14... Nb8 {Intending toi reposition the N.} 15. c3 a5 16. a4 Na6 17. Be2 Nc5 {with equal chances. Parma,B (2540) -Velimirovic,D (2520) Belgrade 1978}) 15. Nxa5 Qxa5 16. c3 Rc4 17. Qd2 b5 18. Rfe1 Rfc8 {So far all the moves have been routine. At the time this move was questioned because it was believed that Landau had overlooked the following reply which wins material. Perhaps that is true, but the position remains equal after this move. The real mistake comes later. That said, therr was a better move.} (18... b4 {This gives black a more active position than he gets after the text.} 19. cxb4 Qxb4 20. Rac1 Qxd2 21. Bxd2 Ra4 22. Rxe7 Bb5 23. Bc3 Rxa2) 19. Qf2 {Threatening Bb6.} Qd8 {Here is the mistake that lands black in trouble...his position becomes too passive.} (19... b4 20. Bb6 Qb5 21. Be2 bxc3 22. b3 R8c5 {This hidden resource saves the day!} 23. Bxc4 (23. Bxc5 {is innacurate...} Qxc5 24. Qxc5 Rxc5 {and black is better.}) 23... Qxb6 24. Rxe7 c2 25. Rc1 Qd8 26. Re2 Bf5 {Black has a solid position and here is no way for white to force an advantage even though he is the exchange uo.}) 20. Be2 Ra4 21. Bd1 {[%mdl 2048] White has all the play.} Re4 {The plan is to sacrifice the exchange which eliminates his poorly placed R and white's well positioned B.} (21... Rac4 {is adequately met by} 22. Bb3 R4c7 23. Bb6) 22. Bc2 Rxe3 ( 22... Rec4 {does not work out well...} 23. Bb6 Qf8 24. Bb3) 23. Rxe3 {This small slip allows black to equalize.} (23. Qxe3 b4 24. Qxe7 bxc3 25. b4 Bb5 26. Qxd8+ Rxd8 27. Re7 {with a promising position.}) 23... b4 {Grabbing his share of counterplay and leading to an exciting finish.} 24. f5 {[%mdl 32] White counters on the K-side.} (24. cxb4 Bd4 25. Qe1 Bxe3 26. Qxe3 Rxc2 {and wins.}) 24... bxc3 25. fxg6 {How should black recapture? It's a case of make the wrong decision and lose or make the right decision and make it a dog fight.} cxb2 { [%mdl 8192] This is the wrong decision! The P on b2 turns out to be no real threat.} (25... hxg6 {could have resulted in a whole other outher outcome after } 26. Rf1 Qe8 27. Qe1 cxb2 28. Rxe7 Qd8 29. Rfxf7 {Double Rs on the 7th rank... what could be better than that for white? Black has at least two continuations; both result in head whirling complications.} Qxe7 (29... Bf8 30. Rxd7 Qe8 31. Qf1 Rxc2 32. Rc7 Re2 33. Rb7 {with equal chances.}) 30. Rxe7 Rxc2 31. Rxg7+ Kxg7 (31... Kh8 32. Rh7+ Kxh7 33. Qe7+) 32. Qe7+ {with a draw.}) 26. gxf7+ { ...and wins.} Kf8 27. Rae1 Bf6 28. Bxh7 Rc1 29. Qg3 Bg7 30. Bb1 Rxe1+ 31. Rxe1 Qa5 32. Rf1 Qc3 33. Qg6 {Black resigned.} (33. Qg6 Bb5 34. Qh7 e6 35. Qg8+ Ke7 36. f8=Q+ Bxf8 37. Qxf8+ Kd7 38. Rf7#) 1-0

Monday, February 12, 2024

The (Forgotten) Tampa Quad of 1917

Once upon a time, in February of 1917, a quadrangular tournament of, to use the American Chess Bulletin’s description, “of usual interest” was held in Tampa, Florida. The reason for the unusual interest was that Jackson W. Showalter, of Georgetown, Kentucky, who was the former United States champion was one of the competitors. 
    In spite of the term “unusual interest” being used by the American Chess Bulletin the magazine’s coverage was scant with only the standings and one game given. The games were contested on the cool and commodious roof garden of the Tampa Chess Club. 
    The tournament was won by Wilbur L. Moorman (January 9, 1859 – September 7, 19294, 75 years old) of Lynchburg, Virginia. He was a former Virginia state chess and checkers champion. 

    Moorman was a Lynchburg, Virginia tobacconist and one of the largest owners of real estate in that area. He came from a prominent family that was part of the Quaker community that originally settled in Lynchburg. He died while going over chess puzzles. 
  The favorite, Jackson W. Showalter (February 5, 1859 – February 5, 1935, 76 years old) held the US Championship on several occasions from the 1890s to 1909. 
    He was a regular participant in major international events from 1893 to 1904, scoring wins over World Champions Wilhelm Steinitz and Emanuel Lasker among other notables. However, in this tournament he was in poor form. 
 Judge Stephen Fitz-James Trub (June 28, 1857 – February 28, 1928m 70 years old) was for several years an attorney in Louisville, Kentucky. He died in a hospital in Fort Myers, Florida. 
     Trabue was born in Kentucky and attended the University of Virginia. For the last 20 years he lived in Florida, where he served as a judge in Charlotte county (located on Florida’s west coast between Sarasota and Fort Meyers). He started off well in this tournament, but fell off after the first lap.
    Nothing is known of Nestor Hernandez except that he was a a Cuban living in Tampa, Florida. 

A game that I liked (Fritz 17)

[Event "Quadrangular, Tampa, Florida"] [Site "?"] [Date "1917.??.??"] [Round "?"] [White "Wilbur L. Moorman"] [Black "Jackson W. Showalter"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "D09"] [Annotator "Stockfish 16"] [PlyCount "41"] [EventDate "1917.??.??"] {D09: Albin Counter Gambit} 1. d4 d5 2. c4 e5 {A rare response to the Queen's Gambit. In exchange for the sacrificed P black has a central wedge at d4 and gets some chances for an attack. Often white will try to return the P at an opportune moment to gain a positional advantage.} 3. dxe5 {The only other repkly worth considering is 3.e3} (3. e3 dxc4 4. Bxc4 exd4 5. exd4 Nf6 6. Nf3 { etc/}) 3... d4 4. Nf3 Nc6 5. g3 Be6 6. Nbd2 Qd7 7. Bg2 Bb4 (7... f6 8. exf6 Nxf6 9. O-O Bh3 10. Nb3 O-O-O {White is slightly better. Gligoric,S (2575) -Ljubojevic,L (2615) Ljubljana 1975}) 8. O-O h6 {Rather pointless as Ng5 is not a threat. The problem is that black's position is already difficult and it's hard to suggest a really good plan.} (8... Nge7 9. Ne4 Ng6 10. Qc2 Bf5 11. Rd1 Ngxe5 12. Nxe5 Nxe5 13. c5 O-O-O {White is winning. Dworakowska,J (2316) -Grigoryan,M (2037) Heraklion GRE 2007}) (8... Bxd2 {seems best, but after} 9. Bxd2 Bxc4 10. Ng5 Bd5 11. Bh3 Qe7 12. Rc1 {White is better. Note that the r-Pawn is immune...} Nxe5 (12... Qxe5 13. Bf4 Qf6 14. e4 Be6 15. Bxe6 fxe6 16. Qb3 {White is winning.}) 13. e4 dxe3 14. Bxe3 c6 15. Re1 h6 16. Bd4 {is decisive.}) 9. Qb3 Rb8 {Black intends Q-side play with ...b5, but the plan turns out to be a very bad idea. More to the point was 9...Nge7 with the intention of ...O-O. Black's K in the center is going to be the main source of his problems.} 10. Rd1 b5 11. Nxd4 {Logical, but wrong.} (11. Ne4 {maintains a significant advantage after} bxc4 12. Qc2 Be7 (12... Nge7 13. a3 Ba5 14. Nc5 Qd5 15. Nxe6 fxe6 16. Nh4 {White's advantage should prove decisive.}) 13. a3 Rb5 14. Nc3 Rb8 15. Be3 Bc5 16. Na4 d3 17. exd3 Bxe3 18. fxe3 Nge7 19. Nc5 { with what should amount to a winning position.}) 11... Nxd4 12. Qxb4 Nxe2+ $2 ( 12... Nc2 {looks inviting, but after} 13. Qc5 Ne7 (13... Nxa1 14. Bc6) 14. Rb1 bxc4 15. b3 cxb3 16. axb3 Nd4 17. Bb2 Nxe2+ 18. Kh1 O-O 19. Nf1 Qe8 20. Rd2 { The stranded N is lost.}) (12... Ne7 {and Black has nothing to worry.} 13. Be4 Nxe2+ 14. Kh1 Bxc4 {with equal chances.}) 13. Kh1 Ne7 14. b3 a5 {An attempt to deflect the Q.} (14... O-O 15. Ba3 Nc6 16. Qc5 {White's advantage should prove decisive.}) 15. Qxa5 O-O (15... Nc6 {Black's attempts to snag the wayward Q fall short.} 16. Qa6 Nb4 17. Qa7 O-O (17... Nc6 18. Qc5) 18. Ba3 Nc6 19. Qe3 { The W has gotten away and the N is doomed.}) 16. Bb2 Nc6 17. Qa3 {Aiming for Qc5.} b4 18. Qa4 Ncd4 19. Qxd7 Bxd7 20. Bxd4 Nxd4 21. Ne4 {Black resigned. Material loss cannot be avoided.} (21. Ne4 Nc2 (21... c5 22. Nxc5) 22. Rac1 Bg4 23. f3) 1-0

Friday, February 9, 2024

Eugene E. Colman

The name Eugene E. Colman (October 11, 1878 – July 20, 1964) is probably unfamiliar to most readers, but he was a Master level British amateur. 
    He graduated from Cambridge University with a law degree and entered service in the Malay States. When he retired, he stayed on in Malaysia and set up youth clubs throughout the country. 
    He tied for 9th-10th (out of 15) in Hamburg 1910, in the 17th DSB Congress, Hauptturnier A event. The tournament was won by Gersz Rotlewi. Carl Carls was second. Carl Ahues and Karel Hromadka tied for third. Edward Lasker was fifth.
    Colman’s name is attached to the Colman Variation of the Two Knights Defense (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.Ng5 d5 5.exd5 Na5 6.Bb5+ c6 7.dxc6 bxc6 8.Qf3 Rb8). 
    During World War II Colman was interned in Changi CivilianInternees Camp in Singapore from 1942 until 1945. It was during his interment that he analyzed the variation. He did so despite the hardships endured during the Japanese occupation; about 850 POWs died in the camp. 
    After the war Colman returned to England and lived in Wimbledon where he was an active member of the Wimbledon Chess Club. He passed away in Roehampton in 1964 and was buried in Gap Road Cemetery not far from Henry Bird.
   In the following game from Tunbridge Wells 1911, he defeats Herbert Jacobs (1863-1950) who at the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century was among the strongest players of England. A natural player, his lack of book knowledge prevented him from reaching the highest levels. He was a barrister ny profession. 

A game that I liked (Fritz 17)

[Event "Tunbridge Wells"] [Site ""] [Date "1911.??.??"] [Round "?"] [White "Eugene E. Colman"] [Black "Herbert L. Jacobs"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "D02"] [Annotator "Stockfish 16"] [PlyCount "55"] [EventDate "1911.??.??"] {D06: Queen's Gambit: Symmetrical Defense} 1. d4 d5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. c4 c5 { This uncommon variation has not stood the test of time.} 4. cxd5 Nxd5 5. e4 Nf6 6. d5 (6. dxc5 {equalizes at best.} Qxd1+ 7. Kxd1 Nxe4 8. Be3 Nc6 9. Bb5 Bd7 10. Nbd2 Nf6 11. Ke2 g6 12. Nc4 Bg7 13. Rhd1 O-O) (6. Nc3 cxd4 7. Qxd4 Qxd4 8. Nxd4 {is favorable fr white. For example...} e5 9. Ndb5 Na6 10. f3 Bb4 11. Be3 {and white is better.}) 6... e6 7. Bb5+ (7. Nc3 exd5 8. exd5 Bd6 9. Bb5+ Bd7 10. O-O {Reiss,T (2347)-Mufic,G (2382) Budapest 2002 is equal.}) 7... Bd7 8. dxe6 {This can hardly be considered bad, but white does not get anything more than adequate compensation for the B.} (8. Bxd7+ {is a good alternative. Todorov,O (2339)-Stankovic,S (2047) St Chely d'Aubrac 2003 continued} Qxd7 9. Nc3 exd5 10. exd5 Bd6 11. O-O {with about equal chances.}) 8... Bxb5 9. exf7+ Ke7 10. Qxd8+ {After this black gains the advantage. Keeping the Qs on with 10. Qb3 would have kept things even.} Kxd8 11. Nc3 Bc6 (11... Bc4 {regaining the P was also possible. but black reasons that it is not going anywhere.} 12. Bf4 Bxf7 13. O-O-O+ Kc8 14. e5 Nh5 15. Bg5) 12. Bg5 (12. e5 {works out poorly.} Nd5 13. Bg5+ Kd7 14. O-O-O Ke6 15. Ne4 {Oddly, black's K is safe and well placed on e6 and white is at a loss for an active continuation.}) 12... h6 13. O-O-O+ (13. Bh4 {was called for. It invites} g5 14. Bg3 Ke7 15. Ne5 Rh7 (15... Bg7 { This costs the exchange, but is technically the best; black still has the upper hand after} 16. Ng6+ Kxf7 17. Nxh8+ Bxh8 {White has a R+P vs B+N. Not too many players would find this position one they would want to play regardless of the engine evaluation.}) 16. O-O-O Nbd7 17. Nxc6+ bxc6 18. Rd6 Rc8 19. e5 {Black is better, but white has active play.}) 13... Kc8 {It's understandable that black avoids a pin that he is in after 13...Nbd7. Nevertheless, 13...Nbd7 was exactly what he should have played.} (13... Nbd7 14. Be3 Ke7 15. e5 Ne4 16. Nxe4 Bxe4 17. Rhe1 Ke6 {With careful play black's advantage should prove decisive.}) 14. Bh4 g5 (14... Bxe4 15. Nxe4 Be7 16. Ne5 {The threat is to play e5 and there is no good way to meet it.}) (14... a6 { a pass to demonstrate the threat.} 15. e5 Nh7 16. Rd8+ Kc7 17. e6 g5 18. e7 { and it's clear that white is winning.}) 15. e5 {But now that black is attacking the B and white has not yet advanced his Ps as in the previous note this move is faulty. Correct was 15.Bg3} (15. Bg3 {keeps the balance.} Nh5 16. Rhe1 Rh7 17. Ne5 Nxg3 18. hxg3) 15... gxh4 16. exf6 {What a mesy situation! Shootouts from this position resulted in black scoring 3 wins and two games were drawn, so practically speaking white is not without some chances of salvaging the game.} Bxf3 {[%mdl 8192] This gives white quadrupled Ps, so haw could it possibly be a losing move, but that's exactly what it is! Either 16... Nd7 or 16...Rh7 keep a small advantage.} 17. gxf3 {Unfortunately for black now there is no way to meet the looming threat of Re8} Rh7 18. Rhe1 Rxf7 19. Re8+ { The remainder of the game is butchery.} Kc7 20. Rdd8 Rd7 21. Rc8+ Kd6 22. Ne4+ Kd5 23. Rxf8 b6 24. f7 Ke6 25. Rce8+ Re7 26. f4 Kd7 27. Nf6+ Ke6 28. Ng8 { Black resigned.} 1-0

Thursday, February 8, 2024

A Lucky Win for Horowitz

When the US joined World War II the demand for just about everything skyrocketed. Among these were the metal needed for tin cans as well as the things that went into them. Meat, chocolate, coffee, coffee, cooking oils, sugar and other foods, even Girl Scout cookies, were limited or disappeared altogether. 
    To buy rationed foods, shoppers had to produce the right ration stamps or coupons. To control spending and discourage hoarding coupons and stamps were only good for certain periods of time. Just because shoppers had coupons there was no guarantee the items would be on the shelves at the grocery store. 
    In 1943, the average life expectancy for men was 62.4 and 64.4 for women. The average movie theater ticket cost 30 cents. A gallon of gas cost 21 cents. A dozen eggs cost 57 cents. 
    A mystery involved a Navy ship, the USS Eldridge, in the Philadelphia Navy Shipyard happened...it involved invisibility and teleportation. Was it a hoax? The Philadelphia Experiment 
    In the chess world in 1943, the US Amateur championship was won by Ariel Mengarini and Herman Steiner won the California Open State Championship with the score of 17-0. Israel A. Horowitz won the 44th US Open, held in Syracuse, New York. 
    The FBI prevented Humphrey Bogart from playing postal chess because they believed chess notation miht be a secret code. One wonders if they were not just harassing him. Director of the FBI, J. Edgar Hoover, was a weird man, so who knows? 
     On March 3, 1943, Bobby Fischer (1943-2008) was born in Chicago. On April 24, Walter Frere (born in1874) died in New York at the age of 69. He was one of the top amateur chess players in New York City. His father had helped organize the First American Chess Congress of 1857 that was won by Paul Morphy. Another American player lost that year was Stasch Mlotkowski (1881-1943 who) died in Gloucester City, New Jersey at the age of 62. 
     Due to the war a gaggle if foreign masters were lost: Henryk Pogoriely (1908-1943) was murdered by the Nazis in Pawiak prison in Warsaw. Abram Rabinovich (1878-1943) starved to death in Moscow. Alexander Romanovsky (1880-1943) died in Russia. Romanian master Emmanuel Sapira (1900-1943) died in Belgium. 
    Mirko Broeder (1911-1943) was murdered by the Nazis. Vasily O. Smyslov (1881-1953), the future World Champion’s father, died in Russia. Polish master Abram Szprio (1912-1943) died at Auschwitz as did Belgian-French master Leon Monosson (1892-1943). 
    Gunnar Gundersen (1882-1943) died in Melbourne. Karlis Betins (1867-1943) died in Riga, Latvia. Mexican-British master Adrian Garcia Conde (1886-1943) died in London. Latvian master Vladimir Petrov (1907-1943) died in a Russian gulag. 
    Karl Berndtsson (1892-1943) died on Gothenburg, Sweden. Jan Kotrc (1862-1943) died in Czechoslovakia. Heinrich Wolf (1875-1943) died in Austria.r. Polish master Edward Gerstenfeld was shot by the Nazis in Rostov-on-Don, Russia. 
    Mikhail Barulin (1897-1943) died in a Russian prison. He had been arrested. Because he refused to sign a confession or denounce other chess problemists. Botvinnik supported Barulin’s arrest. 
    The US Champion Samuel Reshevsky annexed the Metropolitan (New York City) Speed Championship which was played at the home of L. Walter Stephens, a major organizer who financed many national tournaments. 
    Stephens is best remembered as the tournament director who wrongly forfeited Arnold Denker after Reshevsky 's flag had fallen during their game in the 1942 US Championship. 
    Stephens picked up the clock from behind and turned it around to look at it. When he did so, the fallen flag was on Denker’s side of the board, so Sthephens forfeited Denker. Howls of protest from everybody (except Reshevsky) did not sway Stephens who flat out refused to change his decision. 

    The New York City speed tournament was a double round robin with the games played at a ten seconds a move. Reshevsky’s play was ruthless and only Weaver Adams, Isaac Kashdan and Al Horowitz managed to nick him for a draw. For his efforts Reshevsky was rewarded with first prize of $40.00 which had the buyinmh power of about $709 today! What kind of chess did they play at 10 seconds a move? Check out Horowitz’ lucky win in this game.

  A game that I liked (Fritz 17)

[Event "New York City Speed Championship"] [Site "?"] [Date "1943.??.??"] [Round "?"] [White "Weaver W. Adams"] [Black "I. A. Horowitz"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "C28"] [Annotator "Stockfish 16"] [PlyCount "54"] [EventDate "1943.??.??"] {C28: Vienna Game} 1. e4 e5 2. Nc3 Nf6 3. Bc4 {The original idea of the Vienna Game was to play a delayed King's Gambit, but in modern play ehite often plays more quietly by fianchettoing his King's bishop. Adams famously claimed that the Vienna Game led to a forced win for white.} Nc6 4. d3 {[%mdl 32]} Na5 5. Qf3 {Adams goes his own way . 5.Nge2 is the main line.} Nxc4 6. dxc4 c6 7. Nge2 d6 8. h3 Be6 9. b3 d5 {Perhaps this is a bit premature. Black has several safer moves, 9...O-O, for example.} 10. cxd5 cxd5 11. Bg5 ( 11. exd5 Nxd5 12. O-O Nxc3 13. Nxc3 {with a slightly better gane.}) 11... dxe4 {More exact was 11...d4} 12. Nxe4 Be7 13. Bxf6 gxf6 {Evidently Horowitz was hoping that his two Bs and the semi-open g-file would give him attacking chances, but things should not have worked out that way.} 14. N4g3 (14. N2g3 { stays on course.} Qa5+ 15. c3 O-O-O 16. O-O {with about equal chances.}) 14... Qa5+ 15. c3 O-O-O 16. O-O {The small difference between this position and the one after 14.N2g3 is that white has a well placed N on d4 and here he does not. It's enough of a difference that here black is better.} Rhg8 (16... Qd5 { leads to a strong position after} 17. Qe3 f5) 17. Nf5 Bf8 18. c4 {[%mdl 8192] This blooper should lose. Oddly, the next tine this P moves it will lose for real.} (18. Neg3 {keeps things equal. For instance...} Qd5 19. Ne4 Qd3 20. Ne3 Bd5 21. Qf5+ Be6 22. Qf3 {etc.}) 18... Bc5 (18... e4 {wins the N on f4!} 19. Qxe4 Bxf5) 19. Nfg3 Bd4 {Now the advantage swings over to white.} (19... h5 { keeps the balance.} 20. Ne4 f5 21. Nxc5 Qxc5) 20. Nxd4 Rxd4 21. Qxf6 Qc5 { Horowitz is preparing a sacrificial attack with this move, but actually allows white to gain a decisive advantage.} (21... Rg6 22. Qf3 Rd8 23. Rae1 f5 { and black is holding on.}) 22. Rae1 Rxg3 {The point behind his last move, but the whole idea is flawed.} 23. Rxe5 (23. fxg3 {is not playable...} Rf4+ 24. Kh2 Rxf6 25. Rxf6 {and in the long run white'. two Rs will be no match against the Q and B.}) 23... Qb6 {Maintaing the on on the f-Pawn...or so it seems.} 24. c5 {[%mdl 8192] This closes the diagonal and makes fxg3 possible, but it loses the game.} (24. fxg3 {Things are not always what they seem!} Rf4+ {is met by} 25. c5 Rxf1+ (25... Rxf6 26. cxb6 Rxf1+ 27. Kxf1 {White has a won ending.}) 26. Qxf1 Qc6 27. Qe2 {and white has a winning position.}) 24... Rxg2+ {[%mdl 512] Thanks to white's last move black's idea proves successful...bnut only with this sacrifice.} 25. Kh1 (25. Kxg2 {is even worse.} Bxh3+ 26. Kxh3 Qxf6) 25... Qc6 26. f3 Rdd2 27. Qh8+ Kc7 {White resigned. There is a mate in 11.} (27... Kc7 28. Rg5 Rxg5 29. Qf6 Rxc5 30. Qf4+ Qd6 31. Qxd6+ Kxd6 32. Rd1 Rxd1+ 33. Kg2 Rc2+ 34. Kg3 Rg1+ 35. Kf4 Rc3 36. Ke4 Bd5+ 37. Kd4 Rxf3 38. b4 Rd1#) 0-1

Tuesday, February 6, 2024

Update On the Obscure Celia Neimark

    Back in February of 2017 I did a post on the obscure Celia Neimark who, at the age if 7, was considered a prodigy. She disappeared from the chess scene and I could locate only one of her games. See the old post
    The other day I recently received some additional information from a gentleman who was Celia Neimark’s nephew; she was his father’s younger sister. She must have been a very modest lady because he stated that he never knew about her chess playing days. Or, about his grandfather’s chess playing. He added that his father played a little chess as well, so it’s clear that chess was part of what they did growing up in the household.
    She had three other sisters, Bella, Sophie and Sadie. Her father was Louis Neimark and her mother’s name was Libby. Her father was one of Samuel Rzeschewski’s (Reshevsky) simultaneous opponents in Cleveland, Ohio on January 27, 1921. 
    She and her sisters grew up on a farm that was apparently a frequent gathering place and they were a very generous and charitable family. 
    Each of the siblings were descried “as sturdy a specimen … as you’d wish to see.” They all worked extremely hard on the farm (it was a sometimes very difficult and physical life for the family) and they were all quite bright. 
    Celia, known more familiarly by her family as Cele, married Lou Ginsberg and moved to Los Angeles in the early 50s where they had one son, Peter. As an adult Peter moved to Las Vegas and after the death of her husband Lew, Cele following her son to Vegas where she passed in 1998. 
    Her nephew added that Celia was “whip smart and said what was on her mind and very kind, as was the entire family.” Her nephew also noted that Fannie Neimark, who was a first cousin to Celia, was a daughter to Louis’s brother Samuel Neimark. 
    Both Louis and Sam along with their spouses sailed to America around 1906 from Russia, landing in New York at Ellis Island and ultimately settled in the Youngstown/Coitsville, Ohio area where they raised their families, ran the farm and started in business. 
    The following casual game played in West Austintown, Ohio, a small unincorporated community near Youngstown. In the game the Ohio Champion gets defeated bt 7-year-old Celia Neimark. It was the only game of hers that I could locate.
A game that I liked (Fritz 17)
[Event "Casual game, West Austintown, Ohio"] [Site "West Austintown, OH USA"] [Date "1921.??.??"] [Round "?"] [White "Celia Neimark"] [Black "Irving Spero"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "C43"] [Annotator "Stockfish 16"] [PlyCount "113"] [EventDate "1921.??.??"] [Source "American Chess B"] {C43: Petrov Defense} 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. d4 {This is the move preferred by Steinitz. Black can now capture either Pawn.} exd4 4. e5 Nd5 {Rarely played. This move does not yield nearly as good results as the standard 4...Ne4} 5. Qxd4 c6 6. Bc4 Qb6 {After this black's position is difficult. He offers a trade of Qs probably hoping to ease his game.} (6... Be7 7. O-O O-O 8. a3 Nb6 9. Bd3 d5 10. exd6 Qxd6 {is nearly equal. Naesborg,J-Edvardsson,H Helsingor 2008}) (6... Nb4 {is just a bad move.} 7. O-O h6 8. Qf4 {and in Handke,F (2471) -Vano Perez,J (2083) Andorra 2002 white went on to win.}) (6... Nc7 7. Nc3 Ne6 8. Qd1 d5 9. exd6 Bxd6 10. O-O O-O {is roughly equal. Butneva,L (1925) -Smirnova,S (2022) Vladimir 2007}) 7. Qxb6 {This is not so good as white could have gotten a good game with 7.Bxd5.} (7. Bxd5 cxd5 8. Nc3 Bc5 (8... Qxd4 9. Nxd4 Bb4 10. Ndb5 O-O (10... d6 11. Bd2 Be6 12. Nc7+) 11. Bd2 d4 12. Nd5 Bxd2+ 13. Kxd2 Nc6 14. Nd6 {Black is in a miserable situation.}) 9. Qg4 Bxf2+ 10. Ke2 Kf8 11. Nxd5 Qc5 12. Qe4 b6 13. c4 Bb7 14. b4 Qxb4 15. Kxf2 {White is winning.} ) 7... Nxb6 8. Bb3 a5 {This demonstration is a waste of time; black should be concerned with development. I am sure black knew this, but was taking liberties against his opponent.} 9. Ng5 {The position is deceptive as things are very tricky, especially if black plays the best reply, 9...f6.} Nd5 (9... f6 10. Be3 (10. exf6 gxf6 11. Nf7 {is deceptive because after} a4 12. Nxh8 axb3 13. Na3 bxc2 14. Nxc2 Bg7 {it's black who is better.}) 10... d5 11. exd6 (11. Bxb6 fxg5 {actually favors black.}) 11... Nd5 12. Bxd5 cxd5 13. Nf3 Bxd6 14. Nc3 Bb4) 10. a4 {White clearly wants to keep her B on the diagonal} Be7 11. O-O O-O 12. Bxd5 cxd5 13. Nc3 d4 14. Nd5 Nc6 15. Ne4 {It may seem surprising, but the moves of both players have been in Stockfish’s top two or three choices. Very impressive especially for a seven year old girl/.} Bb4 {Black is hard pressed to find a really decent move here.} 16. c3 {As recommended by Stockfish. Impressive!} dxc3 17. bxc3 Be7 18. Nxe7+ Nxe7 19. Ba3 Re8 20. Nd6 { Inhibits Nf5.} Rd8 {So far white’s play has been impeccable! But, her next move should have been 21.Bc5!} 21. Nxb7 $2 {The temptation to win a P is too much, but it allows black to get some breathing room and Bs of opposite color. This move yields no more than equality.} Bxb7 22. Bxe7 Rdc8 23. Rab1 Be4 24. Rbc1 Bd3 25. Rfd1 Bf5 {[%mdl 32]} 26. Rd5 Be6 27. Rc5 Re8 28. Bd6 Bb3 29. Ra1 Re6 30. Rc7 f6 31. Rxd7 fxe5 32. Bc7 e4 33. Bg3 Rc8 34. Bc7 $16 Ra8 35. Rd8+ Rxd8 36. Bxd8 {[%mdl 4096]} Rd6 37. Bxa5 Bxa4 38. Bb4 Rd3 39. h3 Bc6 {Both sides habe handled the ending reasonable well and a draw seems probable here. One wonders about the circumstances that the remainder of the game was played under. Was the state champion trying to wear the little girl out?} 40. Kf1 Bb5 41. Ke1 e3 42. fxe3 Rxe3+ 43. Kf2 Re2+ 44. Kf3 Rc2 45. Ra8+ Kf7 46. Rf8+ Kg6 47. Rc8 Bd7 48. Rc7 Be6 49. Rc6 Kf7 50. Rc7+ Kf6 51. Be7+ Kg6 52. g4 Bd5+ 53. Kf4 Rf2+ 54. Kg3 Rf3+ 55. Kh4 Kh6 {This is a serious error.} (55... h6 $18 { and Black is okay.} 56. Bd6 Kf6 57. Be7+ Kg6 58. c4 Rc3 59. Ra7 Bxc4 {draw}) 56. Rc5 {Missing her chance, but the winning line was difficult to see.} (56. Rd7 $1 Bc4 57. Rd6+ g6 58. Rf6 Rxf6 (58... Rxc3 59. Bf8#) 59. Bxf6 {Black is threatened with 60.g5#, so...} g5+ 60. Bxg5+ Kg6 {This is most likely a theoretical win for white as Stockfish won five Shootouts. To be honest though, the wins took in excess of 100 moves and so the win is probably beyond the ability of most players.} 61. Be3 {with a won ending.}) 56... Be6 {[%mdl 8192] A gross oversight that should have lost.} (56... Rd3 {and Black has nothing to worry.} 57. Rc7 Bg2 58. g5+ Kg6 59. Bf8 Kf5 60. Rc5+ Kf4 61. Rc4+ {White ,ust take the draw.}) 57. Rc6 {pinning the B which is now lost, so black resigned.} 1-0

Monday, February 5, 2024

Arthur Wang

Arthur Wang (born in 1943) passed away on Monday, December 12, 2011 after an 11 month long battle with esophageal cancer. He was a long time Master dating back to the days when Masters were rare. His style was positional and he leaned towards playing endings; he was a mini-Smyslov. 
    Besides chess, his hobbies were golf, pool, archery, knife and ax throwing, and shooting. He was also known for his willingness to bet on sporting events and just about anything else, including which elevator would arrive first. 
    Wang was born in Chung-king, China and came to the United States in 1946 with his mother and older brother. His father stayed behind as head of security for Chiang Kai-shek (1887-1975), a politician, revolutionary, and military leader who served as the leader of the Republic of China and the Generalissimo of the National Revolutionary Army. 
    In October of 1949, after a string of military victories, Mao proclaimed the establishment of the Peoples Republic of China and Chiang Kai-shek and his forces fled to Taiwan. 
    Shortly after sending his family to the United States in 1946, Wang; father perished. Wang's mother had lost everything except a small inheritance and the family finally ended up in Berkeley, California. 
    Wanf learned to to play chess thanks to George Koltanowski's chess program in California. He regularly played at the Berkeley YMCA, and later at the famous Mechanics' Institute in San Francisco. 
    Wang played in the 1957 US Junior Championship (won by Bobby Fischer). Wang shared places 5-10 with a score of 5.5-3.5. In 1960, he won the California Junior Championship and that same year he tied for first with William Addison in a Mechanics' tournament. 
    The year 1962 was a busy one: Wang enlisted in the Army, got married and started a family with his first wife and mother of his three children. He then disappeared from the chess scene until the late 1960s. 
    In 1975, Wang went to Vietnam to evacuate 19 family members just one day prior to the unmitigated disaster known as the Fall of Saigon. I remember watching with horror as the events of that day unfolded. 
    After his time in the Army Wang had worked at the Radiation Lab in Berkeley. He and his wife also started an import business from Vietnam which explains why he was in Vietnam. 
    He took up residence in Palo Alto, California in 1978 where he was a financial executive with a stock brokerage firm. He met his second wife in Singapore and they were married in February of 1979 and enjoyed traveling throughout Asia, Europe, Argentina and the U.S. He also lived in various countries including the Philippines, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand.

     The following game was played in the 1959 US Open in Omaha, Nebraska. Wang scored 7-5 and tied for places 27-43. His opponent scored 7.5-4.5 and finished tied fir places 18-26. Richard Kause (September 5, 1934 – September 7, 1996, 62 years old) was an Expert (2000-2199 Elo) from Cleveland, Ohio, who was a fixture at local and state tournaments for many years. I remember playing on a board next to Kause probably sometime in the early 1970s. He was overweight and although he did not seem bothered by it, during the entire time he was wheezing with every breath as if he were having difficulty breathing. 

A game that I liked (Fritz 17)

[Event "US Open, Omaha, Nebraska"] [Site "Omaha, NE USA"] [Date "1959.07.26"] [Round "?"] [White "Arthur Wang"] [Black "Richard Kause"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "E87"] [Annotator "Stockfish 16"] [PlyCount "55"] [EventDate "1959.??.??"] {E87: King's Indian: Saemisch} 1. c4 Nf6 2. Nc3 g6 3. e4 d6 4. d4 Bg7 5. f3 { The Saemisch often leads to very sharp play with castling on opposite wings taking place. Black has a variety of pawn breaks at his disposal ( ...e5, ... c5 and ...b5 after being prepared by ...c6 and/or ...a6).} O-O 6. Be3 e5 7. d5 Nh5 8. Qd2 f5 9. exf5 gxf5 10. O-O-O f4 {This move foes not turn out well for white because is ends up giving white's N some very strong squares on the K-sdie. Both 10...a6 or 10...Nd7 are better.} 11. Bf2 Bf5 (11... Nf6 12. Kb1 Bf5+ 13. Bd3 Bxd3+ 14. Qxd3 Nbd7 {as in Frost,P-Yu,S Mount Buller 2004. White is better.}) 12. Bd3 (12. g4 {This sharp move causes black more headaches.} fxg3 13. hxg3 Bg6 14. Be2 Nf6 15. Nh3 Qe7 16. Ng5 {White has good attacking chances.}) 12... Bxd3 13. Qxd3 Nd7 14. g4 Nhf6 15. h4 (15. Qc2 Nb6 (15... e4 16. Bd4 Qe7 17. g5 Ne8 18. Nxe4 Bxd4 19. Rxd4 {and white has a very strong attack.}) 16. b3 a5 17. Nh3 a4 18. Ng5 {White's attack is more virile.}) 15... Nc5 {This looks quite logical, but it ignores the brewinbg storm on the K-side and as a result it can be cinsidered the devisive mistake.} (15... Qe8 16. Ne4 Nxe4 17. fxe4 Nf6 18. g5 Ng4 19. Nh3 f3 {and black can survive because white's K-side attack is stalled and he must now try his luck elsewhere and play 20.c5} ) 16. Qc2 {Wand wants to play for the attack. A bit surprising since hius style would normally be to go for the ending thta arises after 16.Bxc5} (16. Bxc5 dxc5 17. Nh3 Qe7 18. Ng5 e4 19. Ncxe4 Nxe4 20. Qxe4 Qxe4 21. Nxe4 Bd4 22. Kc2) 16... a5 17. Nh3 {[%mdl 32] Heading for the outpost e6} Qe7 (17... h6 { to keep the N from going to g5 rins into} 18. Bxc5 dxc5 19. g5 Nh7 20. gxh6 Bxh6 21. Ng5 {Anyway! The N is immune.} Nxg5 22. hxg5 Qxg5 (22... Bxg5 23. Qh7# ) 23. Rdg1) 18. Ng5 Kh8 19. Bxc5 $18 dxc5 20. Nce4 Rfd8 21. Nxf6 Bxf6 22. Ne6 Rg8 23. g5 Bg7 24. h5 {[%mdl 32]} Ra6 {Meaningless, but there is no real defense, but 24...h6 would force white to play accurately.} (24... h6 25. Qf5 hxg5 26. d6 cxd6 27. Nxg5 Bf6 28. Ne4 Raf8 29. Rxd6 Bg5 30. Qh3 Qh7 31. Rg6 Rxg6 32. hxg6 Qxh3 33. Rxh3+ Kg7 34. Nxg5) 25. h6 Bf8 26. Qf5 Rxe6 (26... Rg6 27. Qxf8+ Qxf8 28. Nxf8 Rxg5 29. Ne6 Rg6 30. Nxc7 {with a easy win.}) 27. dxe6 Rxg5 28. Qf7 {Black resigned.} (28. Qf7 Rg6 29. Rd7 Qxf7 30. exf7 {leaves black hopelessly lost.}) 1-0