Monday, August 31, 2009

Mount Arlington Swiss 8/30/2009

Eleven players showed up for yesterday's game/90 quads in Mount Arlington. Instead of quads, there were two Swiss sections, of six players and five players respectively. I finished with a score of 1-0-2 in section one.

Here is my drawn game from the second round.

Round Two: Philidor Counter Gambit

David Cole (USCF 2051) - Jim West (USCF 2200), Mount Arlington NJ 8/30/2009

1.e4 e5 2.d4 d6 3.dxe5 dxe5 4.Qxd8+ Kxd8 5.Bc4 f5 6.Nf3 Nc6 7.Bg5+ Nf6 8.Nc3 Bd6 9.O-O-O Ke8 10.exf5 Bxf5 11.h3 Kd7 12.Rhe1 Rae8 13.Bb5 Kc8

14.Bxf6 gxf6 15.Nd5 Rhf8 16.Kb1 Bd7 17.Nd2 a6 18.Bf1 Be6 19.Ne4 Bxd5 20.Nxd6+ cxd6 21.Rxd5 Rd8 22.Red1 Kc7 23.c3 Ne7 24.R5d3 d5 25.Rg3 Rg8 26.Rxg8 Rxg8 27.g4 Rd8 28.Bg2 b5 29.Kc2 h6 30.a4 Kb6 31.axb5 axb5

32.b4 Ng6 33.Rxd5 Rxd5 34.Bxd5 Nf4 35.Be4 Nxh3 36.f3 Nf4 37.Kd2 h5 38.gxh5 Nxh5 39.Ke3 Nf4 40.Bh7 Kc6 41.Ke4 Nd5 42.Kf5 Kd6 43.Bg6 Ke7 44.Kg4 Ne3+ 45.Kg3 f5 46.f4 Kf6 47.Be8 exf4+ 48.Kf3 Nd5 49.Bxb5 Nxc3 50.Bc6 Ke5

51.b5 Na4 52.Be8 Nb6 53.Bf7 Kf6 54.Kxf4 Kxf7 55.Kxf5, draw.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

April-June 2009 "ACN"

In the April-June 2009 issue of Atlantic Chess News, my article on double bishop sacrifices can be found on page 17. Ken Calitri's interview with Jennifer Shahade runs from pages 18 through 20.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

DOCA TransNet Round 9

The DOCA TransNet FIDE Invitational concluded with these games from the ninth round, including NM David Grasso's victory against me for which Grasso was awarded the Best Game prize.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Ziping @ "Diamondback Chess"

Ziping Liu is featured in a recent post by chess blogger Diamondback.

The above photo, taken by me last Sunday at the Westfield quads, shows Ziping on the right next to his father, as they stand in line behind Alice Dong and Sameer Mujumdar. Playing in quad five, Ziping finished with a score of 2-1-0, bringing his unofficial USCF rating to 1745.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

DOCA TransNet Round 8

These games from the eighth round began the last day of the DOCA TransNet FIDE Invitational.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Asa Hoffmann to Lecture Tonight

The Marshall Chess Club presents free Tuesday chess classes for adult players who are members ($10 for non-members). This series is based on The Mammoth Book of the World's Greatest Chess Games.

Tonight's class, starting at 7pm, is being taught by FIDE master Asa Hoffmann, sparring partner of champions and author of the highly regarded Chess Gladiator. The games being analyzed are Reti - Alekhine, Baden Baden 1925 and Rubinstein - Alekhine, Semmering 1926.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Westfield Quads 8/23/2009

Pictured above are the other three participants, besides myself, in quad one yesterday at Westfield. Standing is Kavinayan Sivakumar, as he watches Sameer Mujumdar defend against Richard Blank.

Here is my victory from the last round.

Round Three: Sicilian Defense, Najdorf Variation

Jim West (USCF 2200) - Richard Blank (USCF 2110), Westfield NJ 8/23/2009

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Bc4 e6 7.Bb3 Nbd7 8.f4 Nc5 9.f5 Bd7 10.Qf3 Qc7 11.Be3 Be7 12.O-O O-O

13.fxe6 fxe6 14.Nf5 Bd8 15.Qg3 Bc8 16.Bxc5 Qxc5+ 17.Kh1 Nh5 18.Nh6+, Black resigns.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Hamilton Quads 8/22/09

I was lucky to draw this game at yesterday's quads in Hamilton. There were 3 seconds left on my clock when I reached the first time control of 40/80.

Round One: Sicilian Defense, Dragon Variation

Jim West (USCF 2200) - Rahul Swaminathan (USCF 2135), Hamilton NJ 8/22/2009

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6 6.Be3 a6 7.Bc4 Ng4 8.O-O Nxe3 9.fxe3 e6 10.Qf3 Qe7 11.Qg3 Bg7 12.Rf3 O-O 13.Raf1 Nc6

14.Nxc6 bxc6 15.Nd1 d5 16.Bd3 c5 17.b3 Bb7 18.exd5 exd5 19.R3f2 a5 20.h4 Be5 21.Qh3 h5 22.g3 Qd6 23.Kh2 Kg7 24.Rg1 Qe7 25.Kh1 c4 26.Bf1 d4+ 27.Bg2 cxb3 28.axb3 dxe3 29.Nxe3 Bd4

30.Re2 Bxe3 31.Rge1 Rfe8 32.Rxe3 Bxg2+ 33.Qxg2 Qd7 34.Rxe8 Rxe8 35.Rxe8 Qxe8 36.Kh2 Qc8 37.Qd2 Qc5 38.Kg2 Kh7 39.Kh2 Qf5 40.Kg2 Qc5, draw.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Two Games in PCG

At Contre Gambit Philidor, Frederic Fournier provides a link to two of my games in the Philidor Counter Gambit.

Friday, August 21, 2009

DOCA TransNet Round 7

The battle between NM David Grasso and IM Dean Ippolito, shown above, is just one game from the seventh round of the DOCA TransNet FIDE Invitational.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Fajarowicz from DOCA TransNet @

At Jim West Talks Chess, I have posted my draw against NM Arthur Feuerstein [pictured above] from round two of the DOCA TransNet FIDE Invitational. The game opened with the Fajarowicz variation in the Budapest defense.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

DOCA Moving to Route 22

In about 4 to 6 weeks, the Dean of Chess Academy will be moving to the ShopRite Plaza on Route 22 in Branchburg NJ.

The new building will be three times the size of the current one. This will enable DOCA to have more FIDE rated events, in addition to its league on Wednesday and Friday nights.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

DOCA TransNet Round 6

The following games were played in the sixth round of the DOCA TransNet FIDE Invitational.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Expected First FIDE Ratings

FIDE has just rated the DOCA TransNet FIDE Invitational. Here are the expected first ratings for the four players who were not FIDE rated at the start of the tournament.

Kevin Chen, 2073

Steve Ferrero, 2153

Mike Somers, 2007

Christopher Wu, 2180

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Pix from NY Summer Game/45

During yesterday's game/45 Swiss at the Marshall Chess Club, I took these pictures.

Before the tournament, chess teacher Tag Taghian gives a lesson to one of his students.

NM Raven Sturt plays speed chess, while Eigen Wang stands watching.

FM Boris Privman reads the newspaper.

FM Ilye Figler chats with Privman.

Here is play from round three.

This photo shows more games from the third round.

In round three, IM Jay Bonin is held to a draw by Eigen Wang.

Between rounds, a chess player and his father eat lunch in the rear courtyard.

Chess blogger John MacArthur is shown here before he defeated me in round four.

FM Ilye Figler and NM Raven Sturt prepare for their fifth round encounter, won by Figler who tied for first place at 4 points with Luis Sanz Arilla sitting to the right of Sturt.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Marshall Chess Club Swiss 8/15/2009

Playing in today's game/45 Swiss at the Marshall Chess Club, I finished with a score of 2-2-1. Here are a couple of games featuring the Philidor Counter Gambit.

Round One: Philidor Counter Gambit

Owen Lin (USCF 1844) - Jim West (USCF 2200), Marshall Chess Club 8/15/2009

1.e4 e5 2.d4 d6 3.Nf3 f5 4.Bc4 Nc6 5.O-O fxe4 6.Bxg8 exf3 7.Bd5 Nxd4 8.Bxf3 Nxf3+ 9.Qxf3 Qf6 10.Qb3 Qf7 11.Qc3 c6 12.Nd2 Bf5 13.Re1 O-O-O 14.Qa5 a6 15.Nb3 Be7 16.Be3 Rdf8

17.Qb6 Bd8 18.Qb4 Bc7 19.c4 Qg6 20.Nd2 h5 21.Qc3 h4 22.b4 Bh3 23.g3 hxg3 24.fxg3 Bd7 25.Rf1 Qh5 26.Rxf8+ Rxf8 27.Rf1 Rxf1+ 28.Nxf1 Qe2 29.Bf2 Bh3 30.Ne3 Qxa2 31.Nc2 Qb1+ 32.Ne1 Qe4 33.b5 Qe2 34.Ng2 Bb6

35.Qe1 Bxf2+ 36.Qxf2 Qxf2+ 37.Kxf2 Bxg2 38.Kxg2 a5 39.h4 a4 40.g4 a3 41.h5 a2 42.g5 a1=Q 43.h6 gxh6 44.gxh6 e4, White resigns.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Round Five: Philidor Counter Gambit

Joshua Colas (USCF 1993) - Jim West (USCF 2200), Marshall Chess Club 8/15/2009

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 f5 4.Nc3 fxe4 5.Nxe4 d5 6.Neg5 exd4 7.Nxd4 Qe7+ 8.Qe2 h6 9.Nge6 Bxe6 10.Nxe6 Kf7 11.Nf4 Qxe2+ 12.Bxe2 Nf6 13.Be3 Bd6 14.O-O-O c6 15.Bf3 Nbd7

16.Nh5 Rhe8 17.Nxf6 Nxf6 18.h4 a6 19.Rhe1 Re7 20.Bd4 Rae8 21.Rxe7+ Rxe7 22.Bxf6 Kxf6 23.Bg4 Bc5 24.Kd2 a5 25.c3 b6 26.Re1 d4

27.Rxe7 dxc3+ 28.Kxc3 Kxe7 29.f3 Bf2 30.h5 Bg3 31.b3 Kd6 32.a4 b5 33.Bf5 bxa4, draw.

Friday, August 14, 2009

DOCA TransNet Round 5

The second weekend of the DOCA TransNet FIDE Invitational began with these games from the fifth round.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Ziping Wins Quad 4 at Westfield

Last Sunday, Ziping Liu won quad four at Westfield with a score of 2-0-1. Here is his victory in the second round. Fritz8 evaluates the position after 27.Bxc3 as equal.

Round Two: King's Indian Defense

Edward Selling (USCF 1710) - Ziping Liu (USCF 1694), Westfield NJ 8/9/2009

1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Bd3 g6 4.c4 Bg7 5.Ne2 O-O 6.Nbc3 Nc6 7.d5 Ne5 8..f3 c6 9.O-O a5 10.Be3 Ne8 11.Rb1 f5

12.Bg5 h6 13.Bh4 g5 14.Bf2 f4 15.Na4 c5 16.a3 Bd7 17.Nac3 a4 18.Nb5 Bxb5 19.cxb5 Qd7 20.Nc3 Nxd3 21.Qxd3 Nc7 22.Qc4 Ra5

23.Nxa4 Qxb5 24.Qxb5 Rxb5 25.Be1 Ra8 26.Nc3 Bxc3 27.Bxc3, and 0-1 in ? moves.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Chess Night in Lakewood NJ

It was Chess Night on August 3rd at the baseball game of the minor league Lakewood BlueClaws.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

DOCA TransNet Round 4

Take a look at the games from the fourth round of the DOCA TransNet FIDE Invitational.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Polgar and Truong Out of USCF

Over the weekend, Susan Polgar and Paul Truong were voted out of the U.S. Chess Federation.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Marshall Chess Club Swiss 8/9/2009

Earlier today, I played this drawn game at the Marshall Chess Club.

Round Three: Sicilian Defense, Accelerated Fianchetto

Jim West (USCF 2200) - Paulo Santanna (USCF 2051), Marshall Chess Club 8/9/2009

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 g6 6.Be3 Bg7 7.Bc4 O-O 8.Bb3 a5 9.f3 d5 10.exd5 Nb4 11.Nde2 a4 12.Nxa4 Nfxd5 13.Bf2 Bf5 14.O-O Qa5

15.c3 Nd3 16.Bxd5 Nxf2 17.Rxf2 Rfd8 18.b4 Qxa4 19.Qxa4 Rxa4 20.Bxb7 Rxb4 21.cxb4 Bxa1 22.g4 Be6 23.Rf1 Bb2 24.a4 Rb8 25.Rb1 Ba3 26.Bc6 Rxb4 27.Rxb4 Bxb4

28.Kg2 Bc4 29.Nf4 e6 30.Bb5 Bb3 31.Nd3 Ba5 32.g5 Bc3 33.Kg3 f5 34.gxf6 Kf7 35.Bc6 Kxf6 36.Nc5 Be1+ 37.Kg2 Bc4 38.Nb7 Ba6 39.Nc5 Bc4 40.Be4 Ke7 41.Bc2 Bd5 42.Nd3 Bc3 43.h4 Kf6 44.Kg3 e5 45.Nf2 Be1 46.Kg2 h5 47.Kf1 Ba5

48.Be4 Bc4+ 49.Bd3 Bd5 50.Be4 Bc4+ 51.Kg2 g5 52.hxg5+ Kxg5 53.Nh3+ Kh4 54.Nf2 Kg5 55.Nh3+ Kh4 56.Bf5 Bd5 57.Nf2 Kg5 58.Bd7 Kf4 59.Nd3+ Ke3 60.Nxe5 Bc7 61.Bc6 Bxe5 62.Bxd5 Kf4

63.a5 h4 64.a6 Bd4 65.Kh3 Kg5 66.Bc6 Bc5 67.Bd7 Bb6 68.Bg4 Bc5 69.Kg2 Kf4 70.Bc8 Bb6 71.Bg4 Bc5 72.Kf1 h3, draw.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Both Sides of the Board

At the Viking 4-County Open 2009, which I won on tie breaks, I found myself playing against a variation that I have tried from both sides of the board.

Round Three: Latvian Gambit

Jim West (USCF 2210) - Steve Ferrero (USCF 1930), Mount Arlington NJ 7/26/2009

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 f5 3.d3 d6 4.Nc3

In my games as Black, I usually arrive at this position via the Philidor Counter Gambit move order 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 3.Nc3 f5 4.d3. In the game Carlsen-Dolmatov, Aeroflot 2004, the same position occurred from a Dutch formation after the opening moves 1.Nf3 f5 2.d3 d6 3.e4 e5 4.Nc3.


This is the move that I have preferred. Dolmatov got into trouble after 4...Nc6 5.exf5 Bxf5 6.d4 Nxd4 7.Nxd4 exd4 8.Qxd4 Nf6 9.Bc4 c6 10.Bg5 b5 11.Bb3 Be7 12.O-O-O Qd7 13.Rhe1 Kd8 14.Rxe7 Qxe7 15.Qf4 Bd7 16.Ne4 d5 17.Nxf6 h6 18.Bh4 g5 19.Qd4, Black resigns.

5.Bg5 Be7 6.Qd2 Nc6

In my opinion, Black's knight is misplaced on c6, a square that should be occupied by his c-pawn. The rule of thumb in the PCG is that Black should only develop the queen knight on c6 after White has played the king bishop to c4, when White loses a tempo if he pins the knight by moving the bishop from c4 to b5. With the bishop on c4, Black's knight often attacks it from the a5 square.

7.O-O-O O-O 8.Kb1 Be6?!

Black throws away a valuable tempo by this inaccuracy. The one drawback to White's 3.d3 is that he will be down a tempo, compared with normal lines in the PCG, after an eventual pawn push to d4. Now White is allowed to regain the tempo. In a game from October 2006, where I was White against Adam Levine-Weinberg (USCF 1741) at the Marshall Chess Club, Black varied with 8...f4 9.Be2 Be6 10.g3 fxg3 11.hxg3 Nd4 12.Rdf1 b5 13.Bxf6 Nxf3 14.Bxf3 Rxf6 15.Bg2 c6 16.Bh3 Qd7 17.Bxe6+ Qxe6 18.f4 Raf8 19.f5 with a clear advantage for White who won in 33 moves.

9.exf5 Bxf5 10.d4 exd4 11.Nxd4 Nxd4 12.Qxd4 Be6 13.Bc4 Bxc4 14.Qxc4+ Kh8 15.Rhe1

White has a clear advantage here. Now the best attempt for Black would have been 15...Qd7 16.Re6 Ng8. Instead his next move is a blunder.

15...Ng8? 16.Rxe7! Nxe7 17.Nd5

I missed a stronger continuation by 17.Qh4! Re8 18.Nd5 Nxd5 19.Bxd8 Raxd8 20.Qa4 Ra8 21.Qb3 Nb6 22.Kc1 with a winning advantage.


Black should have tried to hang on by 17...Rf5!? 18.Bxe7 Rxd5 19.Qxd5 Qxe7 20.Qxb7 Qd8 although White is clearly better with an extra pawn.

18.Bxe7 Qg8 19.Qd4 Rxg2 20.Nxc7 Rc8 21.Bxd6

White is winning, but play is still tricky.

21...Qd8 22.c3 Rg6 23.Be5 Qf8 24.a3 h6 25.Nd5 Rg5 26.Ka1 Rd8 27.h4 Rf5 28.Rg1 Rf1+ 29.Rxf1 Qxf1+ 30.Ka2 Qf7 31.c4 b5

Objectively speaking, I should now have played 32.b3 which maintains White's win. But with time trouble looming for both players, I was worried about exposing my king.

32.Qc3?! bxc4 33.Ne3 Rc8

White stays on top after 33...Rd3 34.Qxc4 Qxc4+ 35.Nxc4 Rh3 36.Nd6 Rxh4 37.Bxg7+!.

34.Bd4 Rc7 35.Ng4 Kg8 36.Ne5 Qe6 37.h5 a6 38.Ka1 Rc8 39.Qb4 Qd5 40.Bc3 Qh1+ 41.Ka2 Qxh5 42.Qb7

After 42...Re8 43.Nxc4 Qg6 44.Nd6 Rd8 45.Be5 h5, Black has good drawing chances.


With little more than a minute left on his clock, Black makes a fatal error.

43.Nc6!, Black resigns.

On 43...Qf8, White decides the game by 44.Ne7+.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Lenderman to Lecture at Marshall CC

On Tuesday, August 11th, GM-elect Alex Lenderman will lecture at the Marshall Chess Club on one of his recent games in which he won his final grandmaster norm.

The lecture will begin at 7p.m. and is open to the public.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

DOCA TransNet Round 3

These games were played in the third round of the DOCA TransNet FIDE Invitational.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Pix from Marshall CC Swiss 8/2/2009

On Sunday, I took these pictures at the Marshall Chess Club during the game/30 tournament.

NM Raven Sturt prepares for round one. FM Asa Hoffmann, not participating in the event, is a spectator.

This shot from round two shows Michael Layevskiy and Asa Hoffmann standing while NM Yefim Treger defeats Mitch Fitzko, Yevgeni Margulis loses to NM Parker Zhao, and IM Jay Bonin beats Sam Barsky. FM Brian Hulse leans against the wall.

In round three, Eric Bobrow fails against Gabor Schnitzler. Meanwhile, in the left background, GM Michael Rohde is held to a draw by NM Parker Zhao.

Larry Price watches NM Yefim Treger lose to GM Michael Rohde, in round four.