Archive for May, 2012

 What a great weekend of Chess! We had a whopping 117 players competing in the RJ Shield tournament across Victoria last Sunday. What a great       turn out!
A special congratulations to our RJ Shield winners:

Gary Lin (Bentleigh)
Ryan Lupreiks (Doncaster)
Zoe Harrison (Mildura)

Full tournament results can be found on Tornelo by clicking on the links below:

Bentleigh | Doncaster | Mildura

Make sure you head over to our Facebook page to check out photos of the Bentleigh Tournament. And don’t forget the next RJ Shield is on 29 July – pop it in your diary now or enter online:



Archive for May, 2012

Australia’s team to the 2012 World U/16 Olympiad in Datca, Turkey from 5–14 August has been announced as Bobby Cheng, Justin Tan, Yi Liu, Laurence Matheson and Anton Smirnov.   This is very pleasing news with three Victorians in the team led by former Would 12U Champion Bobby Cheng – Australia has a very good chance of doing well in the event.   Turkey must be the chess centre of the world at the moment as the Chess Olympiad is being played there also, from 27th August, so August will be a great month to follow chess live on the internet.

Meanwhile, a bit closer to home, there are three RJ Shield tournaments on this Sunday so I hope that many of you will take the opportunity to play and get some valuable tournament practise.   I plan to go to the Tucker Rd. event to record some of the games for my chess lectures and to see how our training squad players are playing.   I didn’t get much chess practise last night at Chess Kids On-Line as we seemed to have moved from writing poems to doing history quizzes!   There was also a bit of discussion about what puzzle I will be showing this week and “CheckNorris” suggested that he had a found nice position that may be suitable.  Unfortunately when I checked it out it turned out to be a snappy little composed problem of mate in 31 moves!   I struggled to find the first move but Check claimed to have solved it in his head!    Maybe that’s why he is rated higher than me, but perhaps it’s a little hard for most readers.

I’ve decided instead to test your understanding of the concept of “the opposition” in King and pawn endings.    I used this position in one of my school classes last week and fooled most of the students, so let’s see if I can catch you out too.    It’s White to play.   What is the result with best play?

[fen caption=”What is the result – White to move”]8/8/8/4p1p1/8/5P2/6K1/3k4 w – – 0 1[/fen]

Archive for May, 2012

Archive for May, 2012

Anand v Gelfand 2012

It should be an exciting time in the chess world at the moment as we are in the middle of a World Chess Championship match between Anand (champion) and Gelfand (challenger).   The match being played in Moscow with games starting at about 9pm E.S.T. here in Australia.  I’ve watched most of the games live at but to-date we have had 5 relatively boring draws.   Not quite as exciting as Spassky v Fischer 1972 but there are still 7 games left to provide some entertainment.

The best part of the live games is that they have a top grandmaster commenting live on the action.  GMs such as Nigel Short and Jan Timman do the commentary, who themselves have been very close to the top of the chess tree, and it’s great to see what they talk about and how they think.

Game 4 was almost interesting and it looked like we may get some tactics, but as compensation we had a very unusual sight of all 8 squares on the “d” file being occupied by pieces, like a tower of pieces stacked on top of each other.  I enjoyed game 5 also as Gelfand played my favourite Pelikan variation of the Sicilian Defence, an opening that our junior training squad is studying at the moment.

I guess the defending champion, Anand, now being in his 40’s has become a solid player, but I’m sure he still has a good eye for tactics.  Take a look at the following example from Anand v Gerber 1988:

[fen caption=”White to play and win”]3k4/5pb1/2P5/pN5P/1p6/1P3p2/1P6/4K3 w – – 0 1[/fen]

Archive for May, 2012

Doncaster Chess Club timetable has changed. Toddler chess classes now on FRIDAY nights. Spaces still available. Visit the website.

Archive for May, 2012

All you have to do to go in the running to win a pewter chess set is sign up for our  new email updates.

By subscribing you’ll get the Knight Times newsletter emailed to you, reminders about upcoming tournaments and exclusive subscriber-only discounts, freebies and opportunities. So please, re-subscribe now.

Anyone who has already signed-up automatically goes into the draw to win the Chess set. A winner will be drawn at the end of June, and will be notified via email.

Good luck!


Archive for May, 2012

Archive for May, 2012

Last night was an interesting night on “ChessKids On-Line.”  CheckNorris and I were continuing our debate about one of his games.  I tend to base all of my moves on positional considerations whilst Check just focuses on tactics so we often disagree in our assessment of positions.   Rookbane butted in to our discussion to ask me how he could improve his Chess Tempo rating, which was “stuck” around 1600.   I suggested that instead of analysing variations he just “looks” for good moves.

About this time DarkKnight came on and asked everyone to help her with her English homework.   She had to write a poem about “Winter”.   I went to work and came up with :

Oh Winter, dreary, cold and grey,
I wish that you would go away.
The birds have flown, the sun has set,
My mind it has but one regret.
I moved my knight and lost my queen,
A worse chess move is seldom seen.
I blame the cold, my mind it froze,
A good excuse I do suppose.

Not bad I thought, and it has a chess theme.  I finished the evening with a quick game against Rookbane.   I was struggling early (he has improved a lot) and we reached the diagrammed position.   Without much thought I played 1.Nd6.   Here CheckNorris asked me why I played 1.Nd6?   I replied “It’s a good square for the Knight.”   I don’t think he understands about good squares and was probably looking at some tactical line instead.   The game only went 3 more moves before one of the players resigned.   Today’s puzzle is to tell me what the 3 moves were to finish the game after 1.Nd6.

[fen caption=”White plays 1.Nd6.  Find the next 3 moves to finish the game.”]5rk1/p1qr1pbp/bp2p1p1/2pnP1B1/2N1Q3/2P3P1/PP3PBP/R2R2K1 b – – 0 1[/fen]

Archive for May, 2012

I had a call from GM Ian Rogers the other day.  He was organising a fund-raising auction for the Australian 16U team going to Turkey later in the year and was wondering if I’d like to bid for some of the chess memorabilia.  I ended up bidding $100 for Bill Egan’s new book “The Doeberl Cup – 50 years of Australian Chess History” (retail $39.95).   My bid was successful.   It may have cost me $60 more than the retail price, but I figured if it helped to get “Check Norris” (the #1 ranked player on Chess Kids On-Line) out of the country for a few weeks it was money well spent.   That would give me a chance to catch up to him!

I’ve discovered that the book comes with a CD in the back, with 6000 chess games from the Doeberl Cup as well, and it’s a big book with 336 pages, photos, games and player profiles.   It’s a great read that I’d recommend to everyone, even juniors who know only the digital age.  It’s nice to learn a bit about the background of Australian Chess rather than just the current players.   Better still you get to see pictures of Australia’s top players before they became fat, bald and old.   Ian Rogers and Guy West look much the same but the rest of us have changed somewhat!

Speaking of Guy West, I don’t think Guy ever won the Doeberl Cup, but he has provided us with a nice puzzle for this week.   Guy is playing White against Alistair Anderson and clearly has a good attack going.   Can you find a pretty finish for White?

[fen caption=”White to play and win”]6nr/Rnrq1pbk/3p3p/1pp1pNP1/1P2P2R/1BPP1Q2/3B1PK1/8 w – – 0 1[/fen]