Monday, July 9, 2007

IM Enrico Sevillano

Hi there!

IM Sevillano enjoys top solo spot in the on-going 2007 Southern California Chess Federation (SCCF) State Championship yesterday in Los Angeles, California, USA. Here's one of Marlon's news:



Individual Standings after three round:

IM Enrico Sevillano (PHILIPPINES) 3.0 points; IM Jack Peters (USA), IM Timothy Taylor (USA), Julian Landaw (USA), John Daniel Bryant (USA) 2.0 points; Ron Hermansen (USA) 1.0 point, Reynaldo del Pilar (PHILIPPINES), John Funderberg (0.0)

FILPINO International Master Enrico "Ikong" Sevillano cotinues his winning ways after posting his third straight wins in as many rounds to grabs the solo leadership board in the ongoing 2007 Southern California Chess Federation (SCCF) State Championship yesterday in Los Angeles, California, USA.

The former top Cebu player, prodigy of National Master Matias "Bombi" Aznar, defeated countryman US Master Reynaldo del Pilar using the white pieces after 32 moves of a Sicilian Defense-Alapin variation sin the eight players invitational field, round-robin format.

Sevillano, earlier beat US Master Julian Landaw also with white side after 51 moves of a Ruy Lopez Opening then subdued US Master Ron Hermansen in just 28 moves of another Ruy Lopez Game employing the disadvantegeous black pieces.

National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP) president Prospero "Butch" Pichay Jr. lauded Sevillano's impressive start along other at iba Pinoy woodpushers who made waves in the international chess circuit.

" Pinatutunayan lamang ng ating manlalaro na kaya nating makipagsabayan sa mga power house country sa larangan ng ajedrez. Dapat pagtuunan natin ng pansin at suporta ang larong chess na nagbibigay ng karangalan sa ating bansa." said Pichay, the deputy president of ASEAN Chess Federation referring to Sevillano, GMs Mark Paragua and Joey Antonio Jr., IMs Roland Salvador, Joseph Sanchez, Rolly Martinez and Julio Catalino Sadorra and the country's newest FIDE master Anton Paolo del Mundo who emerge over-all Under-2400 section champion in the 35 th annual World Open Chess Championships in Pennsylvania recently.

Pichay, together with NCFP secretary-general Abaraham "Bambol" Tolentino Jr., whose aim to promote chess in the grass-roorts level also congratulate the member of the age-grouper who brought honor to the country in the ASEAN Chess Competition in Pattaya, Thailand.

Sevillano, meanwhile will face over-night co-leader IM Jack Peters of the United States in the fourth round using the black pieces. Peters, who lead the competition in the first two round along with Sevillano suffered his first set back at the hands of US Master John Daniel Bryant in another Sicilian-Alapin duel in 41 moves in the third round.

Del Pilar, who hails from Tanauan City, on the other hand suffered his third straight loses. He earlier bowed to Hermansen after 27 moves of a Modern Defense and to Peters after 36 moves of Sicilian Defense, in round 1 and 2, in order.

Sevillano's future schedule matches against IM Timothy Taylor, John Funderberg and John Daniel Bryant in the fifth, sixth and seventh round, respectively.

Sevillano, the reigning SCCF State Championship title holder is coming from runner-up finished in the 47th Annual Pacific Southwest Open last June 29 to July 1 at the Burbank Airport Marriott Hotel with 4 points on account of three wins and two draws. American IM Jack Peters topped the said event with 4.5 points.(MARLON BERNARDINO).

And here's another Laguna area chess tournament:



A MONTH after the successful staging of the First Letran-Calamba National Non-masters, San Pablo City, Laguna, which is also famous for its lakes, is organizing another first—a grassroots team tournament which fully backed up by the local government.

The 2007 Governor Teresita "Ningning" Lazaro Inter-town, Inter-commercial Team Chess Championships will be held on August 4-5, the first weekend of next month, with the deadline for registration set for July 20, a Friday two weeks before the event.

According to it's president Dr. Alfredo Paez, the Laguna Chess Association invited all chess clubs, towns and commercial firms in the province to let their teams compete in the two-division team tournament which will be held at the Rockpoint Hotel in Bgy. San Antonio, San Pablo City..

Each club, town or company may send as many as three teams to represent it. Each team will have four regular players plus one alternate.

The two divisions are the Open and the Mixed (Juniors, Kiddies and Women). Registration fee for the Open is P1,500 per team while that for the Mixed division is P500.

Cash prizes offered for the winning teams in the Open are also much higher than those in the Mixed division. Each winning team in either division will also get a trophy.

For the Open:: champion team, P20,000; second place, P15,000; third, P10,000; fourth, P5,000; and fifth, P3,000. Top scorers from boards one to five will also get gold medals plus P1,000 each.

For the Mixed: champion team, P3,000; second place, P2,000; third, P2,000; top kiddies team, P1,000; top juniors team, P1,000. Top scorers on all five boards will also get gold medals plus P500 each.

Time control is 45 minutes per player to finish a game. The championships will be a seven-round Swiss, with each team playing on four boards.

Interested parties may contact Dr. Paez, (0921) 2728172/(049) 5317628; Ernie Gonzales, LCA secretary (0919) 8278508; or Antonio Gavino, LCA oversight committee chairman, (0928) 4855251.

The LCA also reminded all players to wear their team uniforms during the games and to observe proper conduct, Those wearing sandals, slippers and undershirts (sando) will be barred from the tournament hall.(MARLON BERNARDINO).

And of course, it's Monday today, time for Tito Manny's The Weekender:

The Chess Plaza Weekender
Sunday, July 8, 2007
Quezon Memorial Circle, Quezon City
Vol. II No. 5

FOR THE EIGHTH TIME Kramnik wins Dortmund

REIGNING world champion Vladimir Kramnik of Russia finished the seven-round, eight-player Sparkassen super GM tournament with a score of 5.0, a full point clear of three of his closest rivals to win the annual event for the eighth time in his career.

In a tie for second to fourth places with 4.0 points each were another Russian, Aeroiflot Open champion Evgeny Alekseev, Peter Leko of Hungary and world No. 1 Viswnathan Anand of India, in that order on tiebreak.

Two-time world junior champion Shakhriyar Mamedyarov of Azerbaijan took the fifth with 3.5, 16-year-old Norwegian whiz kid Magnus Carlsen and Israeli superstar Boris Gelfand with 2.5 each in sixth and fifth, and luckless Arkadij Naiditsch of host country Germany with 2.0.

Naiditsch, the No. 1 German GM with 2654, became the favorite whipping boy of Kramnik and ex-world champion Anand.

• V. Kramnik,V (2772) – A. Naiditsch (2654)
Rd. 6, Open Catalan (E04)

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.g3 d5 4.Bg2 dxc4 5.Nf3 Nc6 6.Qa4 Nd7 7.Qxc4 Nb6 8.Qb5 a6 9.Qd3 e5 10.Nxe5 Nb4 11.Qd1 Qxd4 12.Qxd4 Nc2+ 13.Kd1 Nxd4 14.Be3 Nf5 15.Bxb6 cxb6 16.Nc3 Bc5 17.e3 0–0 18.Ke2 Re8 19.Nd3 Rb8 20.Rhc1 Be6 21.Bd5 Bd7 22.Ne4 Bf8 23.Rc7 Rbd8 24.Nc3 Better than 24.Rxb7 Bc8 25.Bxf7+ Kh8 26.Rxb6 Rxe4! Nd4+ 25.Kd2 Be6 26.exd4 Not 26.Rxb7 because of 26…Bxd5 27.Nxd5 Ne6! Bxd5 27.Nxd5 Rxd5 28.Rxb7 b5 29.a4 Rxd4 30.axb5 Red8 31.bxa6 Rxd3+ 32.Ke1 Re8+ 33.Kf1 Rdd8 34.a7 Ra8 35.b4 Re7 36.Rxe7 Bxe7 37.b5 Bc5 37...Bd8 would likely have led to a draw 38.Rc1± Bd4 39.Rc4 Bxa7 40.Ra4 Rb8 41.Rxa7 Kf8 42.Ra5 Ke7 43.Ke2 Rb6 Better but not enough was 43...Kd6 44.Kd3! White is winning Rd6+ 45.Kc4 Rd2 46.b6 Kd6 47.Rb5 Rc2+

After 47…Rc2+

Black resigns without waiting for White’s move, realizing that further resistance was futile because of White’s far-advanced pawn. 1–0


BARELY a month after staging the First Letran-Calamba National Non-masters, Laguna is organizing another first—a grassroots team tournament, this time to be hosted by its capital city, San Pablo, which is also famous for its lakes.

The 2007 Governor Lazaro Inter-town, Inter-commercial Team Championships will be held on August 4-5, the first weekend of next month, with the deadline for registration set for July 20, a Friday two weeks before the event.

In a flyer sent by its president, Dr. Alfred Paez, the Laguna Chess Association invited all chess clubs, towns and commercial firms in the province to let their teams compete in the two-division team tournament which will be held at the Rockpoint Hotel in Bgy. San Antonio, San Pablo City..

Each club, town or company may send as many as three teams to represent it. Each team will have four regular players plus one alternate

The two divisions are the Open and the Mixed (Juniors, Kiddies and Women). Registration fee for the Open is P1,500 per team while that for the Mixed division is P500.

Cash prizes offered for the winning teams in the Open are also much higher than those in the Mixed division. Each winning team in either division will also get a trophy.

• For the Open:: champion team, P20,000; second place, P15,000; third, P10,000; fourth, P5,000; and fifth, P3,000.

Top scorers from boards one to five will also get gold medals plus P1,000 each.

• For the Mixed: champion team, P3,000; second place, P2,000; third, P2,000; top kiddies team, P1,000; top juniors team, P1,000.

Top scorers on all five boards will also get gold medals plus P500 each.

Time control is 45 minutes per player to finish a game. The championships will be a seven-round Swiss, with each team playing on four boards.

Interested parties may contact Dr. Paez, (0921) 2728172/(049) 5317628; Ernie Gonzales, LCA secretary (0919) 8278508; or Antonio Gavino, LCA oversight committee chairman, (0928) 4855251.

The LCA flyer also reminded all players to wear their team uniforms during the games and to observe proper conduct, Those wearing sandals, slippers and undershirts (sando) will be barred from the tournament hall.


China now leagues ahead of RP

NO Filipino today can ever hope to beat any of the Chinese grandmasters, whose ratings are far above those of our leading players.

This was the bitter lesson we learned from last April’s Philippine Open at Subic Freeport where our strongest grandmasters were no match at all to their much younger Chinese counterparts.

And to think that just 35 years ago, no Chinese player could beat Filipino stars like GMs Eugene Torre and the late Rosendo Balinas Jr., along with IMs Rodolfo Tan Cardoso and Renato Naranja!

Where have all the Filipino talents gone? Most are still around, but they have stopped progressing and don’t study or undergo training anymore.

Judging by the results of international tournaments, Filipino players who once dominated the whole of Asia half a century ago are now behind the Chinese, the Indians, the Vietnamese and the Indonesians (our veteran grandmasters all fell behind teenage GM Susanto Megaranto in Subic).

Even Singapore has left the Philippines behind as far as the younger players are concerned, as shown in last month’s Asean Age Group Championships hosted by Thailand in Pattaya.

Asked about the possible reason for this deterioration of Philippine chess, International Arbiter Gene Policarpio had a ready answer: “Filipino players are smart, but they lack proper training. We just do not have any sound training system!”

This plus the factionalism within the chess leadership in the country has led to this sorry state of Philippine chess today.

The final standings at the Philippine Open in Subic clearly show how badly Filipinos compare beside their neighbors: not a single Filipino won a major prize at all!

The top five winners were all Chinese, followed by an Iranian, an Indonesian and then two Chinese, all nine of them having higher scores than that of the best Filipino performer, GM Eugene Torre, who finished in 10th place.

After Torre came two more foreigners—GMs Utut Adianto of Indonesia and Varuzhan Akobian of the US, who just won the World Open.

They were followed by four Filipinos (IMs Oliver Dimakiling, Julio Catalino Sadorra and Wesley So, and GM Mark Paragua, in that order on tiebreak) and another Chinese and four Filipinos (GM Joey Antonio, NM Mirabeau Maga, NM Anthony Makinano and IM Ronald Bancod, also in that order on tiebreak).

I am recapitulating all this because The Weekender received the games database only this week, and their games show how poorly Filipinos now play against the Chinese.

In fact, only one Filipino, Rodolfo Panopio, managed to beat a Chinese GM, Zhao Jun. This happened in the first round and it must have been a fluke judging by Panopio’s subsequent losses to other Filipino players.

Unfortunately, despite the significance of his win, the database does not show the score of the Zhao-Panopio game for unknown reasons.

Although Torre managed to finish 10th overall, his only win of significance was with White against American GM Akobian in the sixth round.

• E. Torre GM (PHI) (2532) – V. Akobian GM (USA) (2574)
Queen’s Pawn Opening (D00)

1.d4 d5 2.Bf4 c5 3.Nc3 e6 4.e3 a6 5.Nf3 Nf6 6.a3 Nbd7 7.Bd3 b5 8.0–0 Bb7 9.Ne5 Be7 10.Qf3 0–0 11.Rad1 Nxe5 12.dxe5 Nd7 13.Qh3 g6 14.Bh6 Nxe5 15.Bxf8 Qxf8 16.Rfe1 Bf6 17.e4 d4 18.Nb1 c4 19.Bf1 Qc5 20.Nd2 h5 21.Nf3 Rd8 22.Nxe5 Bxe5 23.Qh4 Rd7 24.g3 Kg7 25.Qg5 Qc7 26.Qd2 Qb6 27.Kh1 h4 28.f4 28.Kg1 would allow Black to equalize, e.g, 28…hxg3 29.hxg3 d3 30.cxd3 Bxg3 Bf6 If 28...Bc7 29.Bg2! 29.g4 d3 If 29...Bd8 30.g5, with equal chances 30.cxd3 cxd3 Not 30...Qd4 31.g5 Bd8 32.Kg2! 31.g5 Bd4 31...Be7 32.Bxd3 e5 33.fxe5 favors White 32.Qxd3 Bc6 If 32...Qc7 33.Qd2! 33.Qc2 Stronger was 33.b4 e5 34.Qf3, and White surges ahead e5 34.Bh3 Rc7 35.f5 Bb7 36.Qe2 Rc4 37.f6+ Kg8 38.Qg4 Bf2? 38...Bxb2 39.Qxh4 Rd4 should equalize 39.Re2! Bc8 40.Qf3 Bxh3 41.Qxh3 Bd4 42.Qxh4 Qc5 43.Qh6 Qf8 44.Qxf8+ Kxf8 45.Kg2 Ke8 46.h4 Kd7 47.Kf3 a5 48.Kg4 Ke6 49.h5 gxh5+ 50.Kxh5 Rc8 51.Kh6 a4 52.Kg7 Rc7 53.Rf1 Bc5

After 53…Bc5

Realizing the futility of further resistance, Black resigns without waiting for White’s next move.


Torre, 55, was no match against the Chinese, and this did not surprise anyone, considering the yawning gap between his current Elo rating and the lofty ratings of the Chinese titans.

The first Chinese player that Torre (2536) collided with in Subic was the 18-year-old GM Wang Hao (2624), ranked seventh in China and 102nd in the world.

This was in the third round, and although the No. 2 Filipino GM had White, he fell into difficulties as early as the transition from the opening to the middle game.

Against Ni Hua (2681), China’s No. 3 GM, Torre met the same fate with Black.

GM Joey Antonio was a bit luckier. He was paired against the Chinese only once. His rival was a young non-GM, 19-year-old national master Zhang Ziyang, in the third round, whom the No. 1 Filipino player could only hold to a draw with Black.

Antonio, however, suffered a humiliating defeat with White in the seventh round at the hands of a compatriot, NM Ernesto Fernandez of Zamboanga del Norte, who last year also won the Prospero Pichay Sr. Memorial in Cantilan, Surigao del Sur.

• E. Torre (PHI) (2532) – Wang Hao GM (CHN) (2638)
Torre, London and Colle Systems (A47)

1.d4 Nf6 2.Bg5 e6 3.Nd2 c5 4.e3 b6 5.c3 Bb7 6.Ngf3 h6 7.Bh4 Be7 8.a3 d6 9.Bb5+ Bc6 10.Bxc6+ Nxc6 11.Bxf6 Bxf6 12.Ne4 d5 13.Nxf6+ gxf6 Sensing that White would castle K-side, Black creates a path for his rooks on the g-file 14.0–0 Qd6 15.dxc5 Qxc5 16.b4 Qb5 If 16...Qc4 17.Nd4! 17.Nd2 17.Nd4 was better, e.g., 17…Nxd4 18.cxd4, with a clear edge Qd3 18.c4 Ne5 19.Qa4+ 19.cxd5 Rg8 20.Kh1 0–0–0 should equalize Ke7! Not 19...Kf8 20.Rfd1 dxc4 21.b5! 20.Rfd1 Keeping the equilibrium dxc4 21.Rac1 Rhg8 22.Nf1 22.g3! should be tried: 22...c3 23.Nb1, with equal chances Rxg2+!!

After 22…Rxg2+!!

Probably envisioned as early as the 13th turn.

23.Kxg2 Qe4+ 24.f3 Qxf3+ 25.Kg1 h5 26.Qc2 26.b5! was the saving resource, e.g., 26...f5 27.Ng3 Rg8+ 27.Ng3 h4! 28.Qg2 hxg3 29.Qxf3 Nxf3+ 30.Kg2 Nh4+ 31.Kh3 Nf5 32.Re1? 32.e4 was better but not enough g2 32...Rh8+ might be quicker: 33.Kg4 gxh2 34.Kf4 33.Rg1 Nxe3 34.Rc3 Nd5 35.Rxc4 f5 36.Rd4 Ne3! If 37.b5 e5!, and it’s all over. 0–1

• Ni Hua GM (CHN) (2654) – E. Torre GM (PHI) (2532)
Scotch Game (C45)

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.Nxd4 Bc5 5.Nxc6 bxc6 6.Bd3 Qh4 7.Qe2 Nf6 8.h3 0–0 9.g3 Qh5 10.g4 Qe5 11.f4 Qe7 12.Nc3 d5 13.e5 Nd7 14.Na4 Qh4+ 15.Kf1 Bb6 16.Bd2 Bb7 16...Nc5 was better, e.g., 17.Nxc5 Bxc5 18.Kg2, with equality 17.Qf3 Qe7 18.Re1 Rae8 If 18...Rfb8 19.Kg2, with equal chances 19.Kg2 If 19.g5 c5! Ba8 Restoring the balance 20.Re2 f6 20...c5 may be tried: 21.c4 d4, with equality 21.e6! Watch out for this restless pawn Nb8 22.f5 Best was 22.c4! c5 Equalizing 23.c3 Nc6 24.Bf4 Na5 25.Rd1 c4 26.Bc2 Not 26.Nxb6 because of 26…cxd3 27.Nxa8 dxe2 28.Qxe2 Rxa8 29.Rxd5 Nb7! c5 27.Rxd5 Bxd5 28.Qxd5 Rd8 29.Qf3 h6 29...Kh8! should be tried 30.h4! Rfe8 31.Qg3 Nc6 32.g5 Kh8 33.Kh3 Rg8 34.Be4 Ne5? Weak. Best was 34...Qe8, e.g., 35.Nxb6 axb6, reducing White’s lead 35.Bxe5! fxe5 36.Nxb6 axb6 37.gxh6 Qf6 38.Qg5 Rdf8 39.e7! Lovely. If 39…Rf7 40.hxg7+ Qxg7 41.f6 Qxg5 42.hxg5! 1–0

Another Filipino who had a decent record against the Chinese was NM Mirabeau Maga, originally from Davao and now residing in Quezon City where he is a member of the QMC Chess Plaza Club.

Maga (2352), an Olympiad veteran, also battled NM Zhang Ziyang to a draw in an 83-move marathon.

• M. Maga (PHI) (2352) – Zhang Ziyang (CHN) (2323)
Sicilian Defense (B50)

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3² d6 3.c3 Nf6 4.h3 g6 5.Be2 Bd7 6.e5 dxe5 Equalizing 7.Nxe5 Nc6 8.d4 8.Nxd7 Qxd7 9.d3 should keep the balance cxd4 9.Nxd7 Qxd7 10.0–0 Bg7 11.Bb5 dxc3 12.Nxc3 0–0 13.Qxd7 Nxd7 14.Nd5 Nde5 15.Bg5 e6 16.Ne7+ Nxe7 17.Bxe7 Rfc8 18.Rac1 a6 19.Be2 Nc6 20.Ba3 Nd4 21.Bd3 Be5 22.b3 Rd8 23.Rfd1 Rd7 24.Kf1 If 24.Bc5 Rc8! Rad8 25.Bb1 Nb5 26.Rxd7 Rxd7 27.Bb4 Kg7 28.Ke2 Nd4+ 29.Ke1 Nc6 30.Ba3 f5 31.Rd1 Bc3+ 32.Ke2 Nd4+ 33.Kf1 b5 34.Bc5 e5 35.Bxd4 exd4 36.Bd3 Kf6 37.a4 Rb7 38.axb5 axb5 39.Rc1 b4 40.g3 Ra7 41.h4 Ra3 42.Rb1 Ra2 43.Rd1 Ke5 44.Kg2 Rb2 45.Bc4 h6 46.Kf3 g5 Better was 46...d3, e.g., 47.Kg2 Bd4 48.Bxd3 Bxf2 and Black surges ahead 47.hxg5 hxg5 48.Kg2 Bd2 49.Kf1 Bc3?? Losing his initiative: better was 49...Ra2 50.Bd3 50.Kg2 g4 51.Kg1 Ke4 52.Bd3+ Ke5?? Black lets it slip away, says Fritz: 52...Kf3 53.Bxf5 Rxf2 54.Rd3+ Ke2 55.Bxg4+ Kxd3 56.Kxf2 53.Bc4 Ra2 54.Bd3 Bd2 55.Bb1 Rb2 56.Bd3 Ra2?? Allowing counterplay; best was 56...f4 57.gxf4+ Kxf4 57.Bb1 Ra1 58.Kg2 Rxb1 Better was 58...d3!? 59.Rxd2 Rxb1 59.Rxb1 Ke4 60.Ra1 Kd3 61.Kf1 Kc2 62.Ra2+ Kd1 63.Ra1+ Bc1 64.Ra5 d3 65.Rxf5 d2 66.Rd5 Bb2 67.Rd7 Bc3 68.Rd5 Kc2 Missing 68...Bg7! 69.Ke2! Kxb3 70.Kd1 Kc4 71.Rg5 b3 72.Rxg4+ Kc5 73.Rg8 b2 73...Ba5 74.Rb8 Kc4 should equalize 74.Rc8+! Kd4 75.Rb8 Kd3 76.f4 If 76.g4 Ke4 Ke3 77.Rb3 Ke4 78.Kc2 Kf5 79.Kd1 Kg4! 80.Kc2 Kf5 81.Rb5+ Kg4 82.Rd5 Kxg3 83.Rxd2 ½–½

A Filipino who managed to draw against a Chinese GM was NM Rolando Nolte who, however, had lost earlier to China’s No. 1 GM, Wang Yue.

Because the Chinese played very well, most Filipinos did not have a chance to face them. Those who had the chance lost miserably.

Among the Filipino masters who could not hold a candle to the Chinese grandmasters were Julius de Ramos, Anthnoy Makinano and Efren Bagamasbad in the first round, Nolte, FM Fernie Donguines, Emmanuel Senador and IM Ronald Bancod in the second, and IMs Wesley So, Oliver Dimakiling and Barlo Nadera in the third.

The Chinese had to play among themselves or the other visiting GMs in the later rounds and faced Filipinos who somehow had climbed up the ladder again, like Nouri Hamed, who lost with Black to Ni Hua in the fifth, and FM Julio Sadorra with White to GM Zhao Jun and NM Roderick Nava with Black to Li Shilong in the sixth.

At any rate, some of the younger players like NM Nelson Villanueva, who attained national fame when he faced GM Torre in the La Union Open finals earlier this year, and child prodigy Christy Lamiel Bernales, Shell NCR kiddies champion, produced parkling gems and their favorite whipping boy was Than Min of Myanmar.

Nelson, a student at Rizal Technological University in Mandaluyong City, used to be the resident non-master at the QMC Chess Plaza.

• C.L. Bernales (PHI) – Than Min (MYA) (2202)
Sicilian Pelikan/Sveshnikov (B33)

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 e5 6.Nb3 Fritz says 6.Ndb5!? deserved consideration: 6...d6 7.Nd5 Nxd5 8.exd5! Bb4 Equalizing 7.Bd3 d5 8.exd5 Nxd5 9.Bd2 Nxc3 10.Bxc3 Bxc3+ 11.bxc3 0–0 12.0–0 Qc7 13.Re1 Kh8 14.Nd2 If 14.Qf3 f5, with equality f5! 15.Qh5 g6 16.Qh6 e4??

After 16…e4??

A horrible blunder, throwing away a possibly winning game: Black resigns as he had overlooked 17.Qxf8#! 16...Be6, linking up the two rooks, could have saved the game. 1–0

• C.L. Bernales (PHI) – D. Fernandez (PHI) (2068)
Sicilian Defense, Morra Gambit (B21)

1.e4 c5 2.f4 d5 3.exd5 Qxd5 4.Nc3 Qd8 5.Nf3 e6 6.Bc4 Nf6 7.0–0 Be7 8.d3 0–0 9.Qe1 If 9.Ne5 Nd5! Nc6 Equalizing 10.Qg3 g6 10...Nd4 11.Nxd4 cxd4 12.Ne2 should equalize 11.Kh1 a6 12.a4 Nd4 13.Nxd4 cxd4 14.Ne4 14.Ne2 b6 keeps the balance Qc7 15.Bb3 Bd7 16.Bd2 Bc6 17.Rae1 Nxe4 18.dxe4 Bf6 If 18...b5 19.a5, with equal chances 19.Qh3 Rfe8 20.Rf3 Qd7 21.a5 Rad8 22.Qh6 Bg7 23.Qh4 Qe7 24.Qg4 Bxe4?? A blunder; 24...b6 could have saved the game: 25.Rh3 bxa5 26.Bxa5 Rb8, with equality 25.Rxe4! f5? 25...Rc8 was better but not enough 26.Rxe6 Qxe6 27.Bxe6+ Rxe6 28.Qg3 Rde8 29.h4 Bf6 30.h5 Kf7 31.Rb3 R8e7 32.Qf3 Re4 33.Rb6 Re2 34.Qb3+ R2e6 35.Bb4 Re8 36.Rxb7+ Kg8 37.Rb6 Missing a possible mating line: 37.h6 Bd8 38.Qd5 Bc7 39.Rxc7 d3 40.Rg7+ Kh8 41.Re7 R8xe7 42.Bxe7 Re1+ 43.Kh2 Rh1+ 44.Kxh1 dxc2 45.Bf6#! Kf7 38.Rxa6 Bh4 39.Rxe6 Rxe6 40.a6 Mate is in the air, e.g., 40….Kf6 41.Qd5 gxh5 42.a7 Re1+ 43.Bxe1 Kg7 44.a8Q Bd8 45.Qab7+ Bc7 46.Qxc7+ Kh6 47.Qdd6#! 1–0

• N. Villanueva (PHI) (2261) - Than Min (MYA) (2202)
Sicilian Rossolimo, a.k.a. Moscow (B51)

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 d6 4.0–0 Bd7 5.Re1 Nf6 6.c3 a6 7.Bf1 Bg4 8.d4 cxd4 9.cxd4 e5 9...Bxf3 10.Qxf3 Nxd4 11.Qd1 should equalize 10.d5 Nd4 11.h3 Nxf3+ 12.gxf3 Bd7 13.Qb3 b5 14.Nc3 Nh5 15.a4 Rb8 15...bxa4!? 16.Nxa4 Rb8 should keep the balance 16.axb5! axb5 17.Ra7 Not 17.Bxb5 Bxb5 18.Nxb5 Qb6! Be7 18.Rxd7 Best was 18.Na2, e.g., 18…Nf4 19.Bxf4 exf4 20.Nb4! Kxd7??

After 18…Kxd7??

Fritz calls this “an unfortunate move that relinquishes the win,” pointing out that 18...Qxd7 equalizes, e.g., 19.Qxb5 Qxb5 20.Bxb5+ Kf8! 19.Bxb5+! The first forcing move for a mating attack Kc8 20.Ba6+ Kc7 21.Qc4+ Kd7 22.Qc6#! 1–0

Christy and another Filipino girl prodigy, Kimberly Jane Cunanan, did not win any prize in Subic , however, as the Top Female award went to WFM Irine Sukandar of Indonesia.

Lalith Babu, 14-year-old whiz kid from India, also won the Top Junior award over Boris Diaz and Jan Emmanuel Garcia, the Philippine national under-12 boys’ champion and last year’s Shell kiddies champion.


Martinez, Salvador shine in Italy

IT has been about a year now since IMs Rolly Martinez and Yves Rañola, along with then-FM Roland Salvador, left the country to try their luck in Europe, particularly in Italy where migrant labor was said to be welcome.

A few months later, Rañola came back to Manila and, soon after his return, hied off to Singapore where he now teaches chess to young Singaporean players, one of a number of topnotch Filipino players serving the prosperous island city state as coaches and trainers,

Martinez and Salvador, however, decided to stay on in Italy and since then have achieved quite a string of successes.

For one thing, Salvador is now an international master, earning his new title in Italy where he made a name as a giant killer of sorts and earning in the process two GM norms.

Martinez for his part is currently the highest rated rapid-chess player in their foster homeland.

The Filipino IM says he is always the top seed in rapid events because of his rating—a phenomenal 2796!

It is from these tournaments that he makes ends meet for himself and his family back home.

He said Salvador, however, preferred to play in “long game” events so as to hit two birds with one stone: make money by winning fat cash prizes and at the same time try to earn his third GM norm within the year to be able to go back home already a grandmaster.

Despite their good run in Italian events, he said both of them wished they were back home.

“We are both homesick,” he wrote. “We cannot leave Italy yet because of our immigration status. We don’t want to leave and not be able to return to Milan because we would like to continue playing chess here to earn good money.”

“The problem is that life is so hard in our country,” he said. “Finding a good-paying job is very difficult right now. Here our earnings from chess may not be really much but we can live on it.”

“I hope that by next year, our immigration problems will have been straightened out so we can come and go as we please,” he wrote in the vernacular.

Although they earn good money from chess in Italy, Martinez jokingly said they both missed the “harangan sa QC chess plaza at saka sa Luneta!”:)

Remember Marlon Bernardino’s report in August last year that Martinez and Salvador both topped the Genoa Open in Italy? Well, Martinez has sent the Weekender the URL of the official website where the games were posted in PGN.

The highlight of Salvador’s performance in Genoa was his win with White in the fourth round against highly rated GM Alexei Barsov of Uzbekistan, who would then beat Martinez in the same event.

Both Filipinos topped the event with 7.0 from nine games, but it was Martinez who won on tiebreak.

• R. Salvador,Roland (2420) – A. Barsov (2546)
Queen’s Gambit Declined (D39)

1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.c4 e6 4.Nc3 dxc4 5.e4 Bb4 6.Bg5 c5 Not 6...h6 because of 7.Bxf6 Qxf6 8.Bxc4! 7.e5 h6 8.exf6 hxg5 9.fxg7 Rg8 10.Qc2 Qf6 11.0–0–0 Bxc3 12.bxc3 Nc6 13.Bxc4 Bd7 14.d5 Qf4+ 15.Nd2 exd5 16.Rhe1+ Be6 17.Bxd5 0–0–0 18.Bxe6+ fxe6 19.Qe4 19.Qg6 was better, e.g., 19…Kb8 20.Rxe6 g4!, with White having a clear edge Rxg7! 20.Qxe6+ Kc7 21.g3 Qxf2 22.Ne4 Rxd1+ 22...Qxh2?? would be a mistake, e.g., 23.Rxd8 Kxd8 24.Nf6!, and White would have a tremendous advantage 23.Rxd1 Qe3+ 24.Kc2 Re7 25.Qd6+ Kb6 26.Rb1+ Ka5 27.Nd2 Ka6 28.Rb3 c4?? 28...Qe6 was necessary, say Fritz: 29.Qxc5 Qg6+ 30.Kb2 b6! 29.Ra3+ 29.Qa3+ was stronger: 29...Na5 30.Qxa5+ Kxa5 31.Nxc4+ Ka6 32.Ra3+ Kb5 33.Nxe3, with a big lead Kb5


Startling but sound.

30...Nxa5 Not 30...Kxa5+ because of 31.Nxc4! 31.a4+! The end: 31…Kxa4 32.Qb4#! 1–0

• F. Rodella (2072) – R. Martinez (2399)
English Opening vs King’s Indian (A26)

1.c4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.g3 g6 4.Bg2 Bg7 5.d3 d6 6.e4 Be6 7.Nge2 Qd7 8.Nd5 Nce7 9.Bg5 c6 10.Nxe7 Nxe7 11.Qd2 h6 12.Be3 f5 13.Rc1 d5 14.Qc2 14.cxd5 was more precise fxe4! 15.Bc5 15.dxe4 may be tried, e.g., 15...d4 16.Rd1 exd3 16.Qxd3 d4 16...dxc4 17.Qa3 and Black surges ahead, Fritz suggests 17.Bxe7 If 17.0–0 Bf5 18.Qa3 Kf7! Bf5 18.Be4 Kxe7 19.f4 Bxe4 20.Qxe4 Qf5 21.Qxf5 gxf5 22.fxe5 Bxe5 23.Kd2 c5 24.Rhf1 Raf8 25.Kd3 Rf6 26.Nf4 Bxf4 27.Rxf4 Rhf8 28.Rcf1 a6 29.b4 b6 30.a3 Kd6 31.g4 31.R1f2 should be tried Ke5µ 32.gxf5 Rxf5 33.Re4+ Kd6 34.Rxf5 Rxf5 35.Rh4 h5 36.Rh3 Ke5 37.Rg3 Kf6 Missing 37...h4! 38.Rh3 Rf4, and Black has a big lead 38.Ke4 Re5+ 39.Kd3 h4 40.Rf3+ Kg5 41.bxc5 bxc5 42.Kd2 Rf5 43.Ke2 Rxf3 44.Kxf3 Kf5 0–1


Rico’s unforgettable feats

ONE Filipino master whose achievements we can all be proud of and won’t ever forget is Rico Mascariñas, 1982 Lucerne Olympiad gold medalist on board two (ahead of Garry Kasparov, who took the bronze) and disciplined team player.

Soft-spoken and mild-mannered, the 54-year-old international master from Cebu today teaches chess in Singapore, where he has been based for a number of years.

As a journalist I first met Rico soon after he and Rafaelito Maninang won the Palarong Pambansa in the early seventies.

We met again 10 years later in Hong Kong when he played for Manila in the Asian Cities, which I covered for the South China Morning Post where I was a columnist/sub-editor.

Rico and I have been swapping email messages regarding the state of health of NM Eric Gloria after I got his email address from Ignacio Dee with whom he has been corresponding over the years.

I believe that among the country’s top players, Rico has made one of the most inspiring and solid contributions to Philippine chess from the mid-seventies up to now.

Consider the honors he has brought to the country as recorded in Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia on the Net: gold medal, reserve board, 1974 Asian Team Championships in Penang, Malaysia; bronze, board 2, 1977 Asian Team, Auckland, New Zealand; gold medal, board 2, 1982 Lucerne Olympiad; gold, board 3, 1986 Asian Chess, Dubai, UAE; silver, board 2, 1991, Asian TEam, Penang; bronze, 2000 Zonal, Vung Tau, Vietnam; board 1, Rose Pharmacy, 2003 Sinulog Team; seventh place, 21st Cairnhill Open, Singapore 2003; runner-up, 2005 Singapore Open (third Vision Masters); and champion, 2006 Singapore Open (fourth Vision Masters).

Known as a positional player who was fond of playing the English with White, he also excelled in Black and could handle sharp tactical play competently enough.

• Choo Min Wang - Rico Mascarinas
Asian Masters, Jakarta1976
Reti Opening, New York/Capablanca Systems (A07)

1.Nf3 Nf6 2.g3 d5 3.Bg2 Bg4 4.d3 Nbd7 5.Nbd2 e5 6.0–0 Bd6 7.c4 c6 8.Qc2 8.h3 b6 would have kept the balance, says Fritz 0–0! 9.h3 Be6 10.e4 dxe4 11.Nxe4 Nxe4 12.dxe4 f6 13.Be3 Bc5 14.Rfe1 Qb6 15.Rad1 Rfd8 16.Bf1 a5 17.Rd2 Bxe3 18.Rxe3 Nc5 19.Ree2 Bf7 20.Kg2 Bg6 21.b3 Bh5 22.g4 Bg6 23.Kg1 Rxd2 24.Nxd2 Rd8 25.Bg2 Rd4 26.Nf1 Qd8 27.Kh2 Nd3 28.Bf3 Nb4 29.Qb2 Rd3 29...b6 30.Ng3 would have tremendously boosted Black’s lead 30.Kg2 30.Bg2 should be tried Rxf3!

After 30…Rxf3!

Slaying the key defender.

31.Kxf3 Qd3+ 32.Ne3?? A blunder that hastens White’s demise: best was 32.Kg2, e.g., 32…Bxe4+ 33.Kg1, but Black has the initiative Qxe4+ 33.Kg3 Qf4+ 34.Kg2 Be4+! The clincher, e.g., 35.f3 Qxf3+ 36.Kh2 Nd3! 0–1

Although he rarely, if at all, talks about his achievements, Mascariñas has under his belt impressive victories over outstanding players here and abroad, like his win with White against a well-known Russian GM and veteran international campaigner.

• IM Rico Mascarinas - Borislav Ivkov
Polanica Zdroj 1977
Queen’s Gambit Declined (D30)

1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.g3 d5 4.d4 c5 5.cxd5 exd5 6.Bg2 Nc6 7.0–0 Be7 8.dxc5 Bxc5 9.b3 Not 9.Qc2 because of 9…Bb6! 0–0 Equalizing 10.Bb2 Ne4 11.Nc3 Nxc3 12.Bxc3 d4 13.Bb2 Re8 14.Rc1 Bb6 15.Qd2 Bg4 16.Rfd1 Qe7 17.h3 Bh5 18.g4 Ba5 19.Qf4 Bc7 Fritz says 19...Qxe2? won't solve anything, e.g., 20.Nxd4 Qxb2 21.Nxc6 bxc6 22.Bxc6, and White has overwhelming advantage 20.Qd2 Ba5 21.Qf4 Qxe2??

After 21…Qxe2??

Letting White back into the game; 21...Bc7 may be tried, e.g., 22.Qg5 Qxg5 23.Nxg5 Rxe2 24.Bxc6 bxc6 25.Rxc6 Bd8 26.Bxd4 Bxg5 27.gxh5 Rd8, with equal chances.
22.Ba1 Missing his best shot, 22.Nxd4!, e.g., 22…Qxb2 23.Nxc6 bxc6 24.Bxc6 Bxg4 25.hxg4, and White surges on Bg6 23.Nxd4 Qe5 24.Qxe5 Nxe5 25.Nf5 Bxf5 26.gxf5 Nc6 27.Rd7 Nd8 28.Kf1 Bb6? 28...Rc8! was better: 29.Rcd1 Bb6! 29.Bd5 Rb8 30.Bb2 h6 31.b4 Kf8? 32.a4 a5 33.b5 Kg8 34.Rd6! If 34…Nc6 35.bxc6 bxc6 36.Rcxc6! 1–0


Radjabov, world’s No. 1 junior

NOT only is Teimour Radjabov of Azerbaijan the world’s No. 1 junior player at 20, he is also currently No. 9 in the world overall with a super Elo rating of 2746.

That is not all one can say about Radjabov. He was the youngest, too, to become a grandmaster—at 14 years and 14 days in 2001; the youngest to enter the world’s elite group of top 100 players later that year; and the youngest ever, at 15, in 2003 to defeat world No. 1 Garry Kasparov who, like him, was born in Baku.

That same year he beat former Fide world champion Viswanathan Anand of India and the then reigning Fide world champion, Ruslan Ponomariov of Ukraine.

Last year, he outplayed with the black pieces another reigning Fide world champion, Veselin Topalov of Bulgaria.

In January this year, he tied for first with Topalov and Levon Aronian of Armenia in the Corus Super GM in Wijk aan Zee.

It was in the 2003 super GM in Linares, Spain that Radjabov upset Kasparov, proving to all and sundry that he was not a flash-in-the-pan whiz kid. And he did it also as Black!

• Garry Kasparov (2847) - Teimour Radjabov (2624)
Rd. 2, 20th Super GM, Ciudad de Linares 2003
Classical French (C11)

1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.e5 Nfd7 5.f4 c5 6.Nf3 Nc6 7.Be3 a6 8.Qd2 b5 9.a3 Qb6 10.Ne2 c4 11.g4 h5 12.gxh5 Rxh5 13.Ng3 Rh8 14.f5 exf5 15.Nxf5 Nf6 16.Ng3 Ng4 17.Bf4 Be6 18.c3 Be7 19.Ng5 0–0–0 20.Nxe6 fxe6 21.Be2 Ngxe5!? A daring offer of a knight for a pawn in mid-game skirmishes that probably caught the great Garry by surprise: if 21...Nh6 22.h4!, with equal chances 22.Qe3 White rejects the offer in an effort to avoid a draw: 22.dxe5 d4 23.b4 cxb3, with equal chances Nd7 23.Qxe6 Bh4 Fritz suggests 23...Kb7 24.Qxd5 Nf6, but this gives White a distinct advantage 24.Qg4 White starts waffling: 24.Qxd5 Nf6 25.Qf3! was better g5! 25.Bd2 Rde8 26.0–0–0 Na5 27.Rdf1??

After 27.Rdf1??

The fatal blunder. After 27. ... Nb3+, 28. Kd1 Bxg3, White cannot recapture the bishop on g3 because of Black's immediate threat of Qg6, analysts at the scene said. Fritz suggests 27.Kb1 as the only rescuing move, e.g., 27...Qg6+ 28.Ka2, with the balance restored.

27...Nb3+ 28.Kd1 Bxg3 29.Rf7 Rd8 29...Qd6 may be stronger, e.g., 30.Bxg5 b4!, with a huge advantage 30.Bxg5 Qg6 31.Qf5 Qxf5 32.Rxf5 Rdf8 33.Rxf8+ Nxf8 34.Bf3 If 34.h4 Kd7! Bh4 Missing his best shot, 34...Rxh2!, e.g., 35.Rxh2 Bxh2 35.Be3 Nd7 36.Bxd5 Re8 37.Bh6 37.Bf4 is better but not enough to turn the tide: 37…Rf8 38.Be3 Nb6! Ndc5! 38.Bf7 38.dxc5?? Rd8! Re7 39.Bh5 Nd3! Sealing White’s doom: 40.Kc2 Rh7!, and Kasparov accepts his defeat. 0–1

Teimour who, like Kasparov, had a Jewish father started playing at four and at nine was already an accomplished tactician.

Although he has not won any world championship (in 1996, the under-10 crown went to another outstanding child prodigy, Indian superstar Penteala Harikrishna), Teimour had a number of brilliant wins in Menorca that showed a level of mastery far beyond his age.

• Teimour Radjabov - Ivan Cheparinov
U10 Age-Group World Ch, Menorca 1996
Reti Opening, King’s Indian Attack (A04)

1.Nf3 c5 2.b3 d6 3.Bb2 Nd7 3...e5 4.e4 should equalize 4.g3 Ngf6 5.Bg2 g6 6.0–0 Bg7 7.d3 0–0 8.Nbd2 Ne8 9.Bxg7 Nxg7 10.Ne1 e5 11.c3 Ne6 12.Nc2 f5 13.e4 If 13.e3 Nc7 f4 Equalizing 14.Qe2 h5 15.h4 Kg7 16.d4 Qf6 17.Bh3 cxd4 18.Bxe6 Qxe6 19.cxd4 Qh3 20.Qf3 exd4 21.Nxd4 Ne5 22.Qg2 Qg4 23.Rac1 f3 24.Qh2 d5 25.Rfe1 Nd3 26.Rc7+ Kg8 27.Re3 Nf4 28.N2xf3 dxe4 29.Re1?? Best was 29.Rxe4 Nh3+ 30.Qxh3 Qxh3, with equality exf3 30.Ree7 Rf7 31.Rxf7 Nh3+ 32.Qxh3 Qxh3 33.Nxf3 Be6 34.Ng5 Qg4 35.Rg7+ Kf8?? Falling into White’s plan: Best here was 35…Kh8 36.Nh7+! Ke8 37.Nf6+ Black resigns. 1–0

• Andrei Murariu - Teimour Radjabov
U10 European Age-Group Ch., Rimavska Sobota 1996
King’s Indian Attack (A08)

1.e4 e6 2.d3 d5 3.Nd2 Ne7 4.Ngf3 g6 5.g3 Bg7 6.Bg2 c5 7.0–0 Nbc6 8.exd5 exd5 9.d4 c4 10.c3 0–0 11.Re1 Bf5 12.h3 b5 13.Nf1 b4 14.Bf4 Re8 15.Qd2 bxc3 16.bxc3 a5 17.a4 Qd7 18.Kh2 Ra6 19.Ne5 Nxe5 20.dxe5 Bd3 21.Qb2 Qe6 22.Qb5 Rd8 23.Bg5 Kf8? 24.Ne3 Be4 25.Bxe4 dxe4 26.Nxc4 f6 27.exf6 Bxf6 28.Bh6+ Kg8 29.Rac1 Rc6 30.Qxa5?” Rd5 31.Qb4?? Rh5! 32.h4 Rxc4 33.Red1 Rxh6 33...Rxb4?? leads to mate in two: 34.Rd8+ Kf7 35.Rf8#! 34.Rd6 Rxh4+ 35.Kg2 Rh1 Missing 35...Qh3+ 36.Kg1 Qh1#! 36.Kxh1? Missing 36.Rxe6 Rxb4 37.Rxh1 Rxa4 38.Rxf6!, winning Qh3+ 37.Kg1 Rxb4 38.cxb4 Be5 39.Rdd1 e3!

After 39.e3!

Breaking up Black’s pawn defense line.

40.fxe3 Qxg3+! 41.Kf1 Qf3+ 42.Kg1 Qxe3+ 43.Kf1 Qf3+ 44.Kg1 Bd4+! 45.Kh2 Qf2+ Mate is in the air 46.Kh3 Nf5 47.Rg1 Qf3+ 48.Kh2 Be5+! If 49.Rg3 Qxg3+ 50.Kh1 Qh2#! 0–1


The controversial Dr Tarrasch

ONE of the finest and most articulate chess writers has been at the same time one of the most controversial simply because of his dogmatic views about opening theory: the late Dr. Siegbert Tarrasch, a physician turned chess player, author and teacher.

According to a brief biographical sketch by Richard Reti in his book, Masters of the Chess Board, Dr. Tarrasch “was born in Breslau, Germany, (on) March 5, 1862. He studied medicine and for many years practiced in Nuremberg and later in Munich. In later years he devoted almost his entire time to chess and to his writings on chess.”

Reti cited Tarrasch’s successes in chess as follows: first prize, Breslau 1859, Manchester 1890, Dresden 1892, Leipzig 1894, Vienna 1898, Monte Carlo 1903, and Ostend 1907, “as well as matches with Whalbrodt in 1894 and Marshall in 1905, both of which he won in superior style.”

It is a tribute to Reti’s fair and level-headed style of writing that although he was supposed to be the archpriest of the hypermodern school (along with Aaron Nimzowitsch and Dr. Savielly Tartakower), he explained the principles of opening play espoused by Dr. Tarrasch.

It would take reams of paper to explain Tarrasch’s theory as opposed to that of hypermodern advocates like Nimzowitsch.

Suffice it to say that Tarrasch articulated the principles established by the pioneering world champion, Wilhelm Steinitz, whose games laid stress on the importance of controlling the center (the squares d4, d5, e4, e5) by occupying them with pawns.

On the other hand, Reti, Nimzowitsch and Tartakower held that the center could also be controlled from a distance by pieces and that center pawns could even be swapped off early on for as long as one keeps his pieces trained at the vital central squares.

As practiced by Steinitz and explained by Tarrasch, the pawns must first lock up the center and then either side must strive to open up the game with a well-timed pawn attack to open up the game at the most propitious time, with one’s pieces poised to strike at the enemy’s weaknesses.

One principle that Tarrasch stressed and Reti explained is that in a locked position, the bishop moving along diagonals of squares occupied by its pawns is a “bad bishop” while the bishop that has free play on squares of its own color is effective.

The other principle espoused by Tarrasch based on Steinitz’s games was that it was important for either side to have his pieces poised to strike before trying to break through a position locked by pawn chains. In other words, pawns and pieces must move in concert, and the better synchronized side wins.

Reti stressed that before opening up a game, one must have great freedom of movement for his pieces so as to “create the most advantageous conditions.”

In My System, Nimzowitsch said “a pawn move must not in itself be regarded as a developing move but as an aid to development.” He quoted Lasker’s dictum: in the opening one or two pawn moves, not more.

• Tarrasch – Noa
Int’l Tournament, Hamburg 1885
French Defense, Classical System (C11)

1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 The Winawer; today 3.Nd2, later popularized by Tarrasch and now named after him, is consdered to be safer and stronger Nf6 4.e5 More in vogue at that time was the restraining move 4.Bg5, says Reti Nfd7 5.Nce2 c5 Attacking the pawn chain 6.c3 Nc6 7.f4 cxd4 8.cxd4 Not 8.Nxd4 because of 8…Nxd4 9.cxd4 Qb6! Bb4+ 9.Bd2! “A calculation a good many moves deep,” says Tarrasch, who cautions against 9.Nc3 because of the possibility later of an exchange sacrifice, rook for knight Qb6 10.Nf3 0–0 11.Bxb4 Qxb4+ 12.Qd2 Nb6 13.Nc3 The knight aims for Ne2-c3-b5-d6 Rd8 14.Nb5! To cut off the a-rook by Nd6 Bd7 15.Nd6 15...Rab8 16.Rc1 Qxd2+ 17.Kxd2! Nc8 18.Nb5 Fritz suggests 18.Nxc8!?: 18...Rbxc8 19.Be2! a6 Equalizing 19.Nc3 N8e7 20.Bd3 Rbc8 21.b3 Preparing a path for the knight toward c5 Nb4 22.a3 Driving back the enemy knight to ensure his own knights’ advance Nbc6 23.b4 h6 24.h4 Nb8 25.Ke3 Guarding his base pawn and making room for his knight Rc7 26.Rc2 Rdc8 27.Rhc1 Kf8 28.g4 Be8 29.Nd2 Nd7 30.Nb3 Nb6 31.Nc5 Finally reaching his goal Nc4+ 32.Bxc4 dxc4 33.N5e4 Occupying a vantage point b5 If 33...h5 34.Nd6 hxg4 35.Nxc8 Rxc8 36.Ne2! 34.Nd6 Rb8 If 34...Rd8 35.Rf2! 35.f5 Starting the carefully prepared K-side attack, says Tarrasch Bd7 36.Rf2 Nd5+ 37.Nxd5 exd5 38.g5 h5 39.Rcf1 Kg8 40.g6 f6 41.Re2 Bc6 42.Rfe1 Rd8 43.Kf4 fxe5+ 44.Rxe5!

After 44.Rxe5

The knight is immune, e.g., 44…Rxd6 45 Re8+! Bxe8 46.Rxe8#!

44…Kf8 45.Nf7 Re8 46.Ng5 Rce7?? “A mistake which however does not change matters,” says Tarrasch, pointing out that 46...Rxe5 47.dxe5 Re7 gives White a winning advantage, a conclusion confirmed by Fritz 47.Nh7+! If 47…Kg8 48.Rxe7 Rd8 49.Rxg7+ Kxg7 50.Re7+ Kh6 51.Nf8 Rd7 52.Nxd7 Bxd7 53.Rh7#! 1–0


Amazing mates

THE games chosen for today are a direct offshoot of research on the first world champion, Wilhelm Steinitz, and his most ardent apostle, Dr. Siegbert Tarrasch, who articulated the ideas that guided Steinitz in his chess career.

As usual, the yardstick applied is the brilliance of the game itself as a battle of wits, and how it is elevated to dazzling and daring heights of artistry, resulting in the triumph of mind over matter.

The first game, played in the historic city of Nuremberg where the world’s first war crimes trial was conducted after World War II, is rather flawed in the sense that Tarrasch’s early sacrifice of the queen would have gone for naught if the loser, who was apparently not too worthy an adversary, had not made a blunder.

I chose it nonetheless because of the nature of the sacrifice and the way Tarrasch achieves his objectives through sheer derring-do. Besides, the mistakes on both sides are instructive, resulting in a lively if amusing miniature sparkler of a game.

• M. Kuerchner – S. Tarrasch
Friendly, Nuremberg 1891
Vienna Game (C26)

1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.g3 Nf6 4.Bg2 Bc5 5.d3 a6 6.f4 d6! 7.f5 g6 7...h6 8.h3 hugely favors White 8.g4 8.Nf3 would allow Black to equalize, e.g., 8…Ng4 9.Rf1 gxf5 10.exf5 Rg8 h5 Not 8...gxf5 because of 9.exf5 Rg8 10.g5 Bxf5 11.Nge2! 9.Bg5 Nd4 9...hxg4 10.Nd5 Nxd5 11.Bxd8 leads to equality 10.Nd5 Better was 10.Nge2 Bb4 11.a3 Nxe2 12.axb4 Nxc3 13.bxc3 Nxd5!? A startling early sacrifice of the queen that must have stunned and confused White. 11.Bxd8 Ne3 12.Qd2 Ndxc2+! 13.Ke2 Nd4+?? Black loses his initiative, says Fritz, which suggests 13...Nxa1! 14.b4 Ba7 with overwhelming advantage 14.Kf2?? Throwing away the advantage; best was 14.Kxe3 Nb3+ 15.Ke2 Nxd2 and White would have the edge Nxg4+?? Fritz suggests 14...Nb3 15.axb3 Nc4+ 16.d4 Nxd2 17.Bf6 Bxd4+ 18.Ke1 Nxb3 19.Ra3, with equal chances 15.Kg3 Wrong. Best was 15.Kf1!, e.g., 15...Kxd8 16.h3! gxf5! 16.Qg5?? Better but inadequate was 16.Kh4 Ne6 17.Rf1 Nxd8 18.b4 h4+! 17.Qxh4 f4+ 18.Kh3 Nf2#!

After 18…Nf2#!

18...Ne3# was also possible! 0–1

The second game shows the depth of Steinitz’s calculations and his methodical way of achieving his objectives through the commonsense application of tactical motifs like the double attack, pinning, and deflecting sacrifices.

In most of his games, one can see clearly a broad strategy in the way he deploys his forces to gain overwhelming initiative, command of space in vital sections of the board and control of open lines along the files, ranks and diagonals in a highly methodical and time-saving way.

• W. Steinitz – M. Chigorin
World Title Match, Havana 1892
Ruy Lopez, Berlin Defense (C65)

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.d3 d6 5.c3 g6 6.Nbd2 Bg7 7.Nf1 0–0 8.Ba4 Nd7 9.Ne3 Nc5 10.Bc2 Ne6 11.h4 Ne7 Missing the equalizer 11...Nf4!, e.g., 12.g3 Nh5 13.g4 12.h5! d5 13.hxg6 fxg6 14.exd5 Nxd5 15.Nxd5 Qxd5 16.Bb3 Qc6 17.Qe2 Bd7 18.Be3 Kh8 19.0–0–0 Rae8 20.Qf1 a5 21.d4 exd4 22.Nxd4 Bxd4 23.Rxd4 More precise than 23.Bxd4+ Nxd4 24.Rxd4 Re7! Nxd4?? 24.Rxh7+!! Kxh7 25.Qh1+ Kg7 26.Bh6+ Kf6 27.Qh4+ Ke5 28.Qxd4+ Kf5 29.Qf4#!

After 29.Qf4#!

A beauty. 1–0

As a bonus, I have chosen the following minigem taken from the famous Greco collection of games.

Gioacchino Greco (1600-34) was an Italian adventurer who made a living by playing chess and collecting games along the way.

• Giuoco Piano (C53

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.c3 Qe7 5.0–0 d6 6.d4 Bb6 7.Bg5 f6 8.Bh4 g5 9.Nxg5 fxg5 10.Qh5+ Kd7 11.Bxg5 Qg7?? Fritz suggests 11...Nf6: 12.Qh4 Rf8, with equal chances 12.Be6+!! Kxe6 13.Qe8+ Nge7 13...Qe7 won’t avert mate, either 14.d5#!

After 14.d5#!

A familiar sight now, such as the checkmates done by Nimzowitsch’s father and by Marshall himself, but this is the original one.


Not so easy

LAST June 23 I hied myself over to the Pantalan Restaurant near the Luneta Grandstand to witness the oathtaking ceremony of the Pantalan-Aduana Executive Chess Club.

They have a pretty impressive roster:

Loreno Tabilog, President
Atty. Manuel Relorcasa, EVP
Raymond N. Linsangan, VP Internal Affairs
Lorenzo Ropeta, VP External Affairs
Atty. Jerome Norman Tacorda, Secretary General
Wilfredo Rivera Jr, Treasurer
Jose Lambino, Auditor
Willy San Juan, Business Manager
Atong Ma, PRO Customs/Media
Salvador Tardesilla, PRO Players/Membership
Henry Go, Sgt at Arms
Atty. Edward Iberra
Atty. Dioniso Mantos
Atty. Rommel S. Tacorda
Atty. Quirino Sagario
Atty. Leo Tito L. Ausan Jr
Atty. Rene Ochave
Noel Garcia
Reinhard Orth
Ms. Grace Navea-Huff
Ms. Chi Nazario
Dr. Gilbert Perez
Siegfred Manaois
Ricky Navalta
Villamor Espaldon
Niel G. Dumlao

The keynote speaker for the occasion was none other than Senator Gringo Honasan, who gave a highly inspirational talk about duty, commitment and performance.

If you and your friends are attracted to the idea of having a delicious seafood dinner followed by a few chess games by Manila Bay, I can think of no better place than Pantalan. Better yet, sign yourselves up for membership in the Club. For inquiries please call Loren Tabilog at 2433392 or at his mobile 0928-5047552 and 0920-8273610.

During the festivities I bumped into IM Rudy Tan Cardoso, and it was a great coincidence, for during the preparation of the book on “Eugene Torre’s 40 Years of Philippine Chess” I had some questions on several crucial games where he directly participated in.

I will give you an example. Everybody knows that Eugene Torre got his second and final International Grandmaster result from the 1974 Nice Olympiad. This was the last Olympiad organized as a round robin tournament. The 74 countries were split into eight groups of roughly equivalent strength, and the top 2 of each group went on to play in the finals Group A, the next 2 to Group B, then the following 2 to Group C, etc. It was therefore very prestigious to be in Group A, for this is where the top placings from 1-16 are decided.

The Philippines was put in Preliminary Group 7, and here are the final standings:

1 Bulgaria, 27.0/36
2 Philippines, 26.5/36
3 Israel, 24.5/36
4 France, 24.0/36
5 Indonesia, 22.5/36
6 Turkey, 17.0/36
7 Dominican Republic, 16.0/36
8 Faroe Islands, 9.5/36
9 Cyprus, 8.5/36
10 British Virgin Islands, 4.5/36

At first glance you would think that the Philippines placed 2nd in the group 2 pts ahead of the nearest pursuer and easily qualified for the Final Group “A”. The truth was that France and Israel ran us up close and it was only in the final round that we managed to pull away.

In the middle rounds we were scrambling for maximum scores against the weaker teams. We HAD to get 4 wins against the British Virgin Islands. The following game was crucial.

Cardoso,Rodolfo Tan (2385) - Vandyke,Bram [C60]
Nice ol (Men) prel-7 (6), 12.06.1974

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nge7 4.d4 exd4 5.c3 dxc3 6.Qb3 h6 7.Bc4 d5 8.exd5 Na5 9.Qa4+ c6 10.dxc6 Nexc6 11.Be2 cxb2 12.Bxb2 Bb4+ 13.Nbd2 0–0 14.0–0 Re8 [14...Bxd2? 15.Rad1] 15.Rfe1 Bg4 16.Rad1 Bxf3 17.Nxf3 Qe7 18.Bd3 Bxe1

After 18...Bxe1

Rudy Cardoso had been playing without a break and was tired. His mind was blank at the beginning of the game and it was only here that the realization of imminent loss shocked him into full wakefulness.

Rudy took a long think and saw that 19.Rxe1 Qb4 20.Rxe8+ Rxe8 21.Qc2 Rd8 is an easy win for Vandyke. He shifted to desperation mode and started "muddying the waters". Another problem now was that all the thinking left him with 5 minutes for the rest of the game. Black still had half an hour.


The Philippine Team Captain, Bombi Azna,r was irritated at Rudy's recklessness, but Mr. Campomanes, the head of our delegation, understood the situation and tried to calm him down by explaining that the only way to fight on was to complicate the game.

19...Bxf2+ 20.Kxf2 Qc5+ 21.Kf1 g5 22.Qh5

[22.h4 Qb4 with an attack on the b2-bishop forces the queens off]
22...Re6 23.h4 Nc4

Executed with a loud "thump" and threatening ...Ne3+ which apparently ends all resistance. Black was probably expecting Rudy to resign, but the Pride of Alaminos finds the only way to continue resisting.

24.Rc1 Ne3+ 25.Kg1 Qd5 26.Bh7+ Kf8 27.hxg5 hxg5?!

Nowadays with high speed computers we see that 27...Rd8! is possible since the white pawn is pinned against his queen. With the rook protected on d8 Rudy would not have been able to terrorize the back rank as he did in the actual game. Vandyke retook on g5 without a second thought, and neither player were aware of this possibility during the game.

28.Be4! Qxe4 29.Qh8+ Ke7 30.Qxa8 Qb4 31.Bg7

Threatening a devastating check on f8.

31...Kd7 32.Qg8 f6?!

All the threats coming out of nowhere have discombobulated Vandyke. A much more powerful reply would have been 32...Qg4! 33.Ne1 (33.Qxf7+ Re7) 33...Qf5 brings down the curtain.

33.Qh7 Qe7 34.Qb1 Ke8

One last swindle ...

35.Nd4 Qd7??

Vandyke cracks. He should have played 35...Rd6.



36...Qxe6 37.Qxb7 Nc4 38.Qa8+ Kf7 39.Qf8+ Kg6 40.Qxf6+ 1-0

Vandyke, who earlier had plenty of time, got into more acute time trouble than Rudy and, on completing his 40th move, forgot to punch his clock. Rudy, realizing the omission without looking at the clock, started rearranging his score sheet for the second time control, and Vandyke did likewise. Once the flag fell indicating that Black had overstepped the time control Rudy claimed the win which, of course, the arbiter granted.

Anyway, hustler tricks or not White was already winning so we did not cheat the British Virgin Islands of anything, just shortened the game.

If Rudy had lost this game there is the big chance that the Philippines would never have qualified for Final Group “A” and Eugene Torre would not have faced sufficiently strong opposition to get his GM title.

For the rest of the story I am afraid you will have to buy the book, Eugene Torre, 40 Years of Philippine Chess, available by December 2007.

Reader comments and/or suggestions are urgently solicited. Email address is

This column was first published in BusinessWorld on Monday, July 2, 2007.

Kramnik-Topalov title match held likely—in 2009

FORMER Fide world champion Veselin Topalov of Bulgaria will likely have another crack at the crown worn by his conqueror, Vladimir Kramnik of Russia, after all. But that will likely be in 2009.

This became a distinct possibility when the World Chess Federation announced changes to the world cycle that will favor matches to tournaments.

The changes, however, will not affect the world title tournament scheduled for September in Mexico in which Kramnik, Anand, Svidler, Morozevich, Leko, Aronian, Gelfand and Grischuk will take part.

Under the new format, if Kramnik fails to win the Mexico tournament, he will face its winner next year for the world title.

Topalov will next year play the winner of the World Cup to be held in Khanty Manslysk in November.

The winners of these matches will then face each other for the title in 2009.

Topalov had earlier wanted a rematch with Kramnik this year.


Need help

WE are half-way through the writing of “40 Years of Chess with Eugene Torre.” One of the main chapters covers the 1974 Nice Olympiad, where our hero got his GM title.

Here is a story very few people know about. During that Olympiad we were fighting tooth and nail with Bulgaria, Israel and France for one of two qualifying slots to the Championship Finals. We scored rather well against the cellar dwellers and only needed 1 point out of 4 against Bulgaria to stay on course for the Finals. The match-ups were:

Bd 1: IM Eugene Torre 2450 vs GM Ivan Rdulov 2490
Bd 2: IM Rodolfo Tan Cardoso 2385 vs GM Nikola Padevsky 2480
Bd 3: IM Renato Naranja 2395 vs GM Georgi Tringov 2465
Bd 4: Rosendo Balinas vs IM IM Luben Spassov 2430

Eugene got a very strong position out of the endgame and Hon. Florencio Campomanes, the Philippines’ head of delegation, after a quick survey of the other three games, signaled him to offer a draw. Eugene initially protested but, like a good soldier, relented and offer remis.

After this quick half-point the Philippines needed only half-a-point from the remaining three games to achieve its goal, but it was easier said than done, for our positions on the other boards quickly deteriorated. The positions were adjourned and the whole team quickly repaired to Eugene’s bedroom to analyze. They concentrated on Cardoso’s adjourned position against Padevsky, as the other two games were deemed lost causes.

A long night’s analysis proved very discouraging – the game could not be saved! It was at this stage that help came from an unexpected source. Read about it:

Padevsky,Nikola (2480) - Cardoso,Rodolfo Tan (2385) [B12]
Nice olym prel-7 (7), 13.06.1974

1.e4 g6 2.d4 c6 3.f4 d5 4.e5 h5 5.Be3 Nh6 6.Nf3 Bf5 7.Nbd2 e6 8.g3 Nd7 9.h3 b5 10.Bg2 Rc8!

Typical Rudy Cardoso and reminiscent of former world champion Emanuel Lasker - positional play wtih a drop of poison. The bishop on f5 and rook on c8 coordinate to attack c2, although this point is not yet obvious.

11.Rc1 Nb6 12.0–0 Nc4?

Padevsky pointed out that 12...Na4! was stronger than the text. After 13.Rb1 c5 the c2 square becomes vulnerable.

13.Nxc4 bxc4 14.b3 Ba3 15.Rb1 c3 16.Qe2 0–0?

Black should have played 16...Be4 to prevent his opponent's reorganization.

White starts pushing back Rudy's pieces.

17...c5 18.g4 hxg4 19.hxg4 Be4 20.Bxe4 dxe4 21.Rbd1!

Another move to consider is 21.f5 which forces Black to give up his
knight. However, the position after 21...Nxf5 22.gxf5 exf5 23.Rbd1 cxd4 24.Rxd4 Qe7 25.Rd5 Bc5 the position becomes complicated. The text move is strong and simple.

21...Qb6 22.Bf2?

But this is wrong. 22.d5! exd5 23.Rxd5 gets a grip on the d-file and at the same time threatens f4-f5 with even greater effect.

22...cxd4 23.Qxe4 Kg7 24.Kg2 Bc5 25.Rd3 Ng8 26.Nf3 Ne7 27.Nxd4 Bxd4 28.Rxd4 Qc6 29.Qxc6 Rxc6 30.Rh1?

Threatening Bh4 and Bf6+ which, however, Rudy spots and counters nicely. 30.Rd7! is probably winning.

30...g5! 31.f5 exf5 32.Rd7 Re8 33.Rxa7 fxg4 34.Re1 Nf5 35.Re4 Kg6 36.Rd7 f6 37.a4 Rce6 38.a5 g3! 39.Bb6

White avoids 39.Bxg3 Nxg3 40.Kxg3 f5 Black's kingside pawns become mobile.
39...Rxe5 40.Rxe5 Rxe5 41.a6

After 41.a6

The game was adjourned at this point with 41.a6 being the sealed move. The whole team knew what was at stake and so stayed up trying to find a way for Black to save the game. It was assumed that Black had to give up a piece for White's passed pawn on the a-file, and most of the night was spent finding the right timing. After several hours of analysis and everything appeared to lose we took a break. It was then that a Filipino newsman, who had been quietly observing at the back of the room, approached Rudy with the words "I have a suggestion." Being the great gentleman that he was, Rudy did not brush him aside but looked up and said "let's hear it."

This newsman (whose name unfortunately none of us could recall) had the idea that it was hopeless to try and stop the pawn from queening. Why not play 41...Re2+, liquidate White's queenside pawns and go for a fortress set-up in the kingside?

The fortress is a drawing technique where the side with material inferiority sets up a pawn "fortress" around his king that cannot be penetrated by the opponent. For example we could exchange off all the pieces, leave ourselves with rook and pawns and even if Padevsky has a queen so long as his king cannot cross the rank of the black rook this queen will be unable to do anything useful. Obviously this only works when White cannot create a passed pawn so it is imperative to go after them.

Rudy called everyone back to the table to study this proposal. It seemed to work. Next day the game continued ...

41...Re2+ 42.Kf3 Rxc2 43.a7 Ra2 44.Rd8 c2 45.Rc8 Ra3

There was long discussion on whether 45...g2 was a better try. After 46.Rxc2 Nh4+ 47.Ke4 f5+ 48.Kd3 Rudy did not trust this position.

46.Rxc2 Rxb3+ 47.Ke2
[47.Ke4 Ra3 48.Kd5 g2! has many lines but we calculated them all to draws]

In his notes to Chess Informant Padevsky points out that this was the only move to save the game. After 47...Ra3 48.Rc8 Ra2+ 49.Kf3 Ra3+ 50.Kg2 Ra2+ 51.Kh3!, White wins.

48.a8=Q Nd4+ 49.Kd3 Nxc2 50.Qg8+

All that is left now is to bring his rook to e5. After 50...Kh6 51.Kxc2 g2 52.Qh8+ Kg6 53.Qh2 Re6 54.Qxg2 Re5 Black has attained his fortress. He will leave his pawns and rook where they are now and shuttle his king between h6, g6 and g7 and there is no way for White to make progress. Apparently the Hungarians had also reached this conclusion in their analysis, for Padevsky immediately offered a draw which was, of course, accepted without hesitation. A great save where the whole delegation literally helped out.


Most readers know the ending to this story. The Philippines qualified for the Championship Group “A” (the top group), and Eugene went on a rampage, defeating Lajos Portisch (Hungary), Vlastimil Hort (Czechoslovakia), Lothar Schmid (West Germany) and William Hartston (England) along with draws against the likes of Svetozar Gligoric (Yugoslavia), Bob Byrne (USA), Viktor Korchnoi (USSR), etc. to nail down his International Grandmaster title.

His teammates put in their contributions too. In particular Glenn Bordonada was on fire and brilliantly defeated the Spanish champion Sanz (with a queen sacrifice!), the Hungarian GM Gyula Sax, and several more.

The whole team then went home to the Philippines to a tumultuous heroes’ welcome.

Here is the question: would anyone know who the newsman was who suggested the drawing maneuver? I spoke to Rudy Cardoso himself and he does not recall either.

Can anyone help?

Reader comments and/or suggestions are urgently solicited. Email address is

This column was first published in BusinessWorld on Friday, July 6, 2007.

Chess quote

“After such a tough match (versus Garry Kasparov, London 2000, for the world classical title) you need time to recuperate. You can't play such a match in the same year; you need at least a couple of years.”—Vladimir Kramnik


NCFP must lead in unity move

THE revival of the NCFP website is a welcome move that should presage an honest-to-goodness effort to reunite the Filipino chess community. Unless the NCFP leads such a move, there will always be disunity. Let the NCFP lead by example, and everybody else will follow. Gens una sumus! Aren’t we one family after all?


I DON’T believe it’s all about the spoils of power. It’s all a question of pride, of
amor propio. If only one side would take the first move, sincerely and earnestly, I see no reason why the other side should shy away from reconciliation. The problem is, nobody seems big enough to swallow his pride.


I BELIEVE that on the one hand, one faction wants to wield absolute power over the NCFP for obvious reasons: power can be parlayed into money. The other faction has the same dream but is just biding its time. Both sides, however, must realize that a house divided will inevitably collapse.


THE forthcoming selection for the national training pool will be an acid test for unity within the NCFP and the Filipino chess community. Right now, nobody from “the other camp” has stepped forward to help smooth things out. What is the executive director doing about it? Or is he there only for the title?


AS of now, after the disaster in Subic and in Pattaya, we can no longer afford to be complacent. The latest performance of our top players, who shied away from the World Open after so much bluff and bluster, shows they have lost confidence in themselves. It that is so, they don’t deserve our support at all.


LET’S support instead our younger, apparently more talented and more courageous players like 13-year-old IM Wesley So and Haridas Pascua, as well as 11-year-old Jan Emmanuel Garcia. The NCFP should exert all effort to help provide sponsors for these gifted youngsters.


IT’S clear that our present crop of “masters” are now far behind their Chinese and Indian rivals. In the World Open, for instance, our No. 3 GM had to withdraw after losing to fellow GMs Hikaru Nakamura and Leonid Yudasin, while No. 6 Indian GM, Chanda Sandipan, tied for first place with Nakamura and company.


THE present sorry state of Philippine chess is a direct result of the endless squabbling among our leaders, their failure to provide a sound training program and the continued hemorrhaging of public funds because of graft and corruption in the government. All this has been exacerbated by the petty rivalries of those in power.


THE problem lies in our failure to distinguish between what is private and what is public and the proprietary attitude of those in positions of power to the office they occupy. Elect somebody mayor of a town and he immediately thinks the town is his for the taking.


IS it true that GM Dao Thien Hai has been “canned” by the Vietnamese because of his link to Filipino players?

Chess quote

“Without error there can be no brilliancy.”—Emanuel Lasker

The Weekender
Quezon Memorial Circle
Quezon City
Manuel O. Benitez
Editor & Publisher
Alfredo V. Chay
Circulation Manager

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