Saturday, February 29, 2020

Physical Fitness and Chess

Magnus Carlsen drinks less orange juice and  more chocolate milk.

Friday, February 28, 2020

Article on NM Sophie Morris-Suzuki

[photo by Austin Fuller]

National master Sophie Morris-Suzuki [pictured], who has played in tournaments at the Marshall Chess Club, is featured in this article.

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Interactive Chess E-book Reader

Forward Chess allows you to take your chess library with you wherever you go.

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

NBC News Video on WFM Alexandra Botez

WFM Alexandra Botez [pictured] is making chess popular on her Twitch channel.

Monday, February 24, 2020

Kasparov Returns to Scene of AI Victory

[photo by Stan Honda]

Will Knight interviews Garry Kasparov.

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Thursday Action, Round 3, 2/20/2020

On Thursday, I drew this game in the tournament at the Marshall Chess Club.

Round Three: Ruy Lopez

Jim West (USCF 2200) - Nathaniel Moor (USCF 2074), Marshall Chess Club 2/20/2020

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Bc5 4.c3 Nf6 5.O-O Bb6 6.d4 exd4 7.cxd4 O-O 8.Nc3 d5 9.e5 Ne4 10.h3 Bf5 11.Be3 f6 12.Qb3 fxe5 13.Qxd5+ Qxd5 14.Nxd5 exd4 15.Nxb6 Rad8

16.Bxc6 bxc6 17.Nxd4 cxb6 18.Nxc6 Rd7 19.Rfd1 Rc7 20.Nd4 Bd7 21.Rac1 Rfc8 22.Rxc7 Rxc7 23.Rc1 Rxc1+ 24.Bxc1 Kf7 25.f3 Nc5 26.b3 Nd3 27.Bd2 Ke7 28.Kf1 Kd6 29.Ke2 Ne5 30.Bf4 Kd5 31.Bxe5 Kxe5 32.Ke3 g5

33.Ne2 h6 34.f4+ gxf4+ 35.Nxf4 Kf5 36.Ne2 Kg5 37.Kf2 h5 38.Nd4 a5 39.Nf3+ Kf4 40.g3+ Ke4 41.h4 b5 42.Ne1 b4 43.Ke2 Bg4+ 44.Kd2 Bc8 45.Ke2 Bg4+ 46.Kd2 Bc8 47.Ke2 Ba6+ 48.Kd2 Bb7 49.Nd3 Kf3

50.Nf4 Kxg3 51.Nxh5+ Kxh4 52.Nf4 Kg4 53.Nd3 Kf3 54.Ne5+ Ke4 55.Nc4 Kd4 56.Nxa5 Bd5 57.Kc2 Ke3 58.Kb2 Kd3 59.a3 bxa3+ 60.Kxa3 Bxb3 61.Kxb3, draw.

Saturday, February 22, 2020

Thursday Action, Round 1, 2/20/2020

On Thursday, I won this game in the tournament at the Marshall Chess Club.

Round One: King's Indian Attack

Jim West (USCF 2200) - Liam Murphy (USCF 1815), Marshall Chess Club 2/20/2020

1.Nf3 Nf6 2.g3 g6 2.Bg2 Bg7 4.O-O d6 5.d3 O-O 6.e4 e5 7.Nbd2 Nc6 8.a4 Ne8 9.c3 f5 10.h4 Nf6 11.Ng5 Qe7 12.exf5 gxf5 13.Re1 h6 14.Qb3+ Kh8 15.Nh3 Qf7

16.Qxf7 Rxf7 17.Nc4 Bd7 18.Bd2 Rg8 19.Kh1 Kh7 20.b4 Bc8 21.b5 Nd8 22.a5 Rd7 23.Be3 a6 24.bxa6 bxa6 25.Rab1 Ne6 26.Rb8 Re7 27.d4 e4 28.Nf4 Ng4 29.Nxe6 Bxe6 30.Rxg8 Kxg8 31.Bf1 Nxe3 32.Nxe3 Bc8

33.Rb1 c5 34.Rb8 Re8 35.Nxf5 cxd4 36.cxd4 e3 37.Rxc8 Rxc8 38.Ne7+ Kf7 39.Nxc8 Ke6 40.fxe3 Kd5 41.Bxa6 Kc6 42.Ne7+ Kd7 43.Nf5 Bf8 44.Bb7 Kc7 45.a6 Kb6 46.g4, Black resigns.

Friday, February 21, 2020

Tamburro Analyzes Potts - West, USATE 2019

In the 2020 annual edition of Atlantic Chess News, Pete Tamburro analyzes my game against Christopher Potts. [All notes by Pete Tamburro.]

          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *

Round One: Budapest Gambit, Fajarowicz Variation

Christopher Potts (USCF 1957) - Jim West (USCF 2203), Parsippany NJ 2/16/2019

Oh, my dear does this game bring up memories!  Back in 1964, at the NJ Open, I was playing against Arthur Bisguier in a simul.  I played the Budapest against him - you know, to play something he wasn't used to seeing - and he came to the board and looked at me and said with a big grin, "You play THIS against ME!?"  Little did I know that he was the foremost expert on the opening.  I got crushed like a bug with a system that was simple and strong.  I then switched to the Fajarowicz line with 3...Ne4 rather than the normal 3...Ng4 and even beat a master with it.  It's nice to see NM West still plays it after all these years.

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e5 3.dxe5 Ne4 


I gave up the Fajarowicz because of s simple idea: 4.a3!  Even Bisguier started playing that as White!  
a) There is much mischief in 4...b6!? 5.Qd5 Nc5 (5...Bb7 6.Qxb7 Nc6 7.Nc3 Nc5 8.Bg5+/-) 6.Nf3 (6.Qxa8 Bb7 7.Qxa7 Nc6 8.Qxb7 Nxb7) Bb7 7.Qd1 Nc6 8.b4 Ne6 9.Bb2;
b) The quirky queen move can be met calmly: 4...Qh4 5.g3 Qh5 6.Bb2 Qxe5 7.Nf3 Qh5 8.Nd4 Nf6 9.Nc3+/-.
5.Nc3 d6 6.Qc2 d5 7.e3 Bg4 8.cxd5 Qxd5 9.Bc4 Qa5+ 10.b4! Bxb4+ 11.axb4 Qxa1 12.Qxe4 Bh5 13.e6!+/-, Bisguier-Ljubojevic, Malaga 1971, 1-0 in 35.


Your annotator feels obligated to the initiated to present this tricky old trap (it's amazing how many people fall into it):
4...d6 5.cxd6 Bxd6 6.g3 Nxf2! 7.Kxf2 Bxg3+ 8.Kxg3 Qxd1.

5.Nbd2 Nc6 6.e3 Qe7 7.Qc2 Nxd2 8.Bxd2 Bxd2+ 9.Qxd2 Nxe5 10.Nxe5 Qxe5

If White doesn't know the critical lines, then the nice thing about the Faj is that equality comes easily.  In this position, White can castle queenside right now or play 11.Be2 and then castle kingside with complete equality.  However, things go horribly wrong, starting with what looks like an additional guarantee of equality.

11.Qd4 Qa5+ 12.Qd2 Qxd2+ 13.Kxd2

So far, so good.  Nothing is going on here.  Where should we go for dinner?

13...b6 14.g3 Bg7 15.Rg1 O-O-O 16.Bg2?

The first step to perdition.

16...Bxg2 17.Rxg2

When you have fianchettoed your rook, something has started to go wrong.


People with a Budapest Gambiteer's attitude will always find a way to attack the king.

18.cxd5 Rxd5+ 19.Kc2

Another step towards Troubletown.  Awkward but defendable was 19.Ke1 Rhd8 20.f4.


Who's your daddy now, d2 square?


A demoralizing defense was 20.Re1 Rc5+ 21.Kb1 Rd2 22.Rc1 Rxc1+ 23.Kxc1 Re2, but a decent chess player wins this every time as Black.

20...Rc5+ 21.Kb3 Rd3+ 22.Kb4 a5+ 23.Ka4 Rxe3 24.Rd1 Kb7 25.b3 Rxf3 26.Re2 h5 27.Rd4 g6 28.b4 b5+

This is a delightful and appropriate way to end it all.  Black gambits a pawn for mate next move.  Now you know why a lot of 1920s masters played 1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3!


Thursday, February 20, 2020

USATE 2020, Day 3

On Monday, I finished with a score of 3-3-0 at the USATE.

Round Six: English Opening

Nikhil Thota (USCF 1501) - Jim West (USCF 2200), Parsippany NJ 2/17/2020

1.Nf3 c5 2.c4 g6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nc6 5.e4 Nf6 6.Nc3 d6 7.f3 Nxd4 8.Qxd4 Bg7 9.Qd1 O-O 10.Be3 Be6 11.g4 Qa5 12.Bd4 Rfc8

13.g5 Qxg5 14.Qb3 b5 15.Qxb5 Qf4 16.Be2 Rab8 17.Qa6 Rxb2 18.Rd1 Rxe2+ 19.Nxe2 Qxf3 20.Ng3 Nxe4 21.Rf1 Qg4 22.Bxg7 Nxg3 23.Rd4 Qe2#.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

USATE 2020, Day 2

On Sunday, I won this game at the USATE.

Round Three: French Defense, Exchange Variation

Jim West (USCF 2020) - Michael Lowey (USCF 1536), Parsippany NJ 2/16/2020

1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 exd5 4.Nf3 Bd6 5.Bd3 h6 6.O-O Be6 7.Re1 Nd7 8.Bf5 Qf6 9.Bxe6 fxe6 10.Qe2 Nf8 11.Qb5+ Kf7 12.Qxb7 Qd8 13.Ne5+ Bxe5 14.Rxe5 Nd7 15.Re1 Ngf6 16.Bf4 Ne8

17.Qc6 Nf8 18.Nd2 g5 19.Be5 Rg8 20.c4 Rg6 21.cxd5 exd5 22.Qc2 Qd7 23.Rac1 Rc8 24.Nb3 Ne6 25.Qf5+ Nf6 26.Rc3 c6 27.Rf3 Qe7 28.Bxf6 Rxf6 29.Qh7+ Ke8 30.Qxe7+ Kxe7 31.Nc5 Rcf8

32.Nxe6 Rxe6 33.Rxe6+, Black resigns.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

USATE 2020, Day 1

[photo by Joe Renna]

Pictured from left to right are the team members of West Orange Krush: NM Mark Kernighan, NM Jim West, Howard Weiss, and Alberto Martinez.  Not pictured is alternate Joe Fortunato.

Round One: Sicilian Defense, Dragon Variation

Jim West (USCF 2200) - Arjun Ganesh (USCF 1747), Parsippany NJ 2/15/2020

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 g6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Bg7 5.Nc3 Nc6 6.Be3 d6 7.Qd2 Nf6 8.f3 O-O 9.Bc4 Bd7 10.h4 Rc8 11.Bb3 Ne5 12.O-O-O Nc4 13.Bxc4 Rxc4 14.h5 Qa5 15.Kb1 Rfc8 16.hxg6 fxg6

17.Nb3 Qb4 18.a3 Nxe4 19.axb4 Nxd2+ 20.Bxd2 e6 21.Be1 d5 22.Rh4 d4 23.Nxd4 Rd8 24.Nxe6, Black resigns.

Monday, February 17, 2020

My Spring 2020 Schedule at Premier Chess

On Tuesdays, in the spring 2020 session, I will teach an after school enrichment class at Millington Elementary School for Premier Chess.

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Article on West Orange Chess Club

Krista Vaeth interviews WOCC president John Hagerty.

Saturday, February 15, 2020

WOCC Teams at USATE 2020

At the USATE 2020 beginning today, the West Orange Chess Club will be represented by these teams:

1} West Orange Krush
     NM Mark Kernighan
     NM Jim West
     Howard Weiss
     Alberto Martinez
     Joe Fortunato (alternate);

2) West Orange Nayak Knights
    Doran Race
    Ismael Pagan
    Amelia Chan
    Steve Moctezuma.

Friday, February 14, 2020

FIDE Mondays 2/10/2020

On Monday, I played this game at the Marshall Chess Club.

Round Four: Owen Defense

Jim West (USCF 2200) - John Brendel (USCF 1806), Marshall Chess Club 2/10/2020

1.e4 b6 2.d4 Bb7 3.Bd3 e6 4.Nh3 c5 5.c3 cxd4 6.cxd4 Bb4+ 7.Nc3 f5 8.exf5 Bxg2 9.Qh5+ Kf8 10.Rg1 Bxh3 11.Qxh3 Qf6 12.Be3 Ne7 13.fxe6 dxe6 14.O-O-O Bxc3 15.bxc3 Nd7

16.Bg5 Qf7 17.Rde1 Nf5 18.Bxf5 exf5 19.Re7 Qxa2 20.Qxf5+ Nf6 21.Bxf6 Qa1+ 22.Kd2 Qb2+ 23.Qc2 Qxc2+ 24.Kxc2 gxf6 25.Rgg7 a5 26.Rxh7 Rxh7 27.Rxh7 Kg8 28.Rb7 Re8

29.Rxb6 Re2+ 30.Kd3 Rxf2 31.Ra6 Rf3+ 32.Kc4, Black resigns.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Jersey Boys Dominate at NY Scholastic

[photo by International Chess Academy]

Bobby Qian [pictured] of Short Hills NJ won all of his games at the NY Scholastic Chess Championship.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Sunday Game/50, Round 3, 2/9/2020

On Sunday, I won this game in the tournament at the Marshall Chess Club.

Round Three: Pirc Defense

Harvey Li (USCF 1602) - Jim West (USCF 2200), Marshall Chess Club 2/9/2020

1.d4 Nf6 2.Bf4 g6 3.Nc3 d6 4.e4 c6 5.Qd2 b5 6.f3 b4 7.Nce2 a5 8.O-O-O Ba6 9.g4 h5 10.g5 Nh7 11.Bh3 Bg7 12.e5 dxe5 13.dxe5 Qxd2+ 14.Rxd2 e6 15.Rd6 Bf8 16.Rd2 Be7

17.Nd4 Nxg5 18.Bg2 c5 19.Nb3 Nc6 20.Nxc5 Bxc5 21.Bxg5 Rc8 22.Nh3 O-O 23.Re1 Be7 24.Bxe7 Nxe7 25.Rd7 Nf5 26.f4 Rfd8 27.Red1 Rxd7 28.Rxd7 Bb5 29.Ra7 Bd3 30.Ra8 Rxa8 31.Bxa8 Bc4 32.b3 Bf1

33.Nf2 h4 34.Ne4 h3 35.Kd2 Bg2 36.Ke1 Ne3 37.Kf2 Nd1+ 38.Kg3 Kg7 39.Nf2 Ne3 40.Bxg2 hxg2 41.Nh3 Nxc2 42.Kxg2 Ne1+ 43.Kf1 Nd3 44.Ke2 Nc1+ 45.Kd2 Nxa2 46.Nf2 Nc3 47.Nd3 Kh6 48.Nc5 Nd5

49.Nb7 Nxf4 50.Nxa5 Kg5 51.Nc6 Nd5 52.Kd3 Kf4 53.Nd8 Kxe5 54.Nxf7+ Kf6 55.Nd8 g5 56.Nc6 g4 57.Kc4 Ne3+ 58.Kxb4 Nf1 59.Kc4 Nxh2 60.Nd4 g3 61.b4 g2 62.Ne2 Nf3 63.b5 Ke7 64.Kc5 Kd7 65.Kb6 g1=Q+ 66.Nxg1 Nxg1

67.Ka7 Nf3 68.b6 Nd4 69.b7 Nc6+ 70.Kb6 Kd6 71.Kb5 Kc7 72.Kc5 Kxb7 73.Kd6 e5 74.Kd5 Kc7 75.Ke4 Kd6 76.Ke3 Kd5 77.Kd3 e4+ 78.Ke3 Ke5 79.Ke2 Kd4 80.Kd2 e3+ 81.Ke2 Ke4 82.Ke1 Kd3 83.Kd1 e2+ 84.Ke1 Nd4 85.Kf2 Kd2, White resigns.

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Sunday Game/50, Round 1, 2/9/2020

On Sunday, I played this game in the tournament at the Marshall Chess Club.

Round One: English Opening

John Walton (USCF 1651) - Jim West (USCF 2200), Marshall Chess Club 2/9/2020

1.Nf3 c5 2.c4 g6 3.g3 Bg7 4.Bg2 Nc6 5.O-O e6 6.d3 Nge7 7.Nbd2 O-O 8.Rb1 d5 9.a3 b6 10.cxd5 Nxd5 11.Nc4 Bb7 12.e4 Nc7 13.Bf4 Ba6

14.Qa4 Bb5 15.Qb3 Bxc4 16.Qxc4 e5 17.Bg5 Qd7 18.Rfd1 Ne6 19.Bh3 Rfe8 20.b4 cxb4 21.axb4 Rac8 22.Qb5 h6 23.Be3 Rcd8 24.Rbc1 Ncd4 25.Nxd4 exd4 26.Qxd7 Rxd7 27.Bf4 g5 28.Bd2 Rb7 29.f4 gxf4 30.gxf4 Kh8

31.Kh1 a5 32.Bxe6 Rxe6 33.bxa5 bxa5 34.Bxa5 Ra6 35.Rc8+ Kh7 36.Rc7 Rb2 37.Be1 Raa2 38.Bg3 h5 39.Rxf7 h4 40.Be1 Rxh2+ 41.Kg1 Rag2+ 42.Kf1 h3 43.Bf2 Rxf2+ 44.Ke1 Re2+ 45.Kf1 Reg2, White resigns.

Monday, February 10, 2020

Robert Conrad 1935-2020

[photo by Photofest]

Robert Conrad [pictured] starred as Secret Service agent James West on The Wild Wild West.

Sunday, February 9, 2020

Thursday Action, Round 2, 2/6/2020

On Thursday, I drew this game in the tournament at the Marshall Chess Club.

Round Two: Sicilian Defense, Najdorf Variation

Brewington Hardaway (USCF 2246) - Jim West (USCF 2200), Marshall Chess Club 2/6/2020

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be2 e5 7.Nb3 Be7 8.O-O Be6 9.Be3 Nbd7 10.a4 O-O 11.Kh1 Rc8 12.Bf3 Nb6 13.a5 Nc4 14.Bc1 b5 15.axb6 Qxb6

16.Be2 Qb7 17.f3 Rfd8 18.Qe1 d5 19.Bd3 d4 20.Ne2 Bb4 21.Qh4 a5 22.h3 Ne3 23.Bxe3 dxe3 24.Nbc1 Bd2 25.b3 Ra8 26.Ra4 Bd7 27.Rc4 Bb5 28.Rc5 Bxd3 29.Nxd3 Nd7 30.Rd5 Re8 31.Qg3 f6 32.Qg4 Nf8 33.Nc5 Qf7

34.h4 Red8 35.c4 Rxd5 36.exd5 Bb4 37.Nd3 Qg6 38.Qe4 Qxe4 39.fxe4 Bd2 40.Ra1 Nd7 41.Kh2 Rb8 42.Ra3 Kf7 43.c5 Bb4 44.Nxb4 Rxb4 45.c6 Nc5 46.Rxa5 Nxe4 47.Ra7+ Kg6 48.Ra4 Rxa4 49.bxa4 Kf7 50.a5 Nd6

51.a6 Nb5 52.d6 Ke6 53.d7 Ke7 54.Kh3 Na7 55.Nc3 Nxc6 56.Kg3 f5 57.Kf3 f4 58.Nb5 Kxd7 59.a7 Nxa7 60.Nxa7 Kd6 61.Nb5+ Ke6 62.Nc7+ Kf5 63.Ne8 e4+ 64.Ke2 Kg4 65.Nxg7 f3+ 66.gxf3+ exf3+ 67.Kxe3 Kxh4, draw.

Saturday, February 8, 2020

Thursday Action, Round 1, 2/6/2020

On Thursday, I won this game in the tournament at the Marshall Chess Club.

Round One: Pirc Defense

Jim West (USCF 2200) - Jessica Hyatt (USCF 1910), Marshall Chess Club 2/6/2020

1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 Nbd7 4.f4 e5 5.Nf3 exd4 6.Nxd4 Nc5 7.Bd3 Be7 8.O-O O-O 9.h3 a5 10.a4 h6 11.Be3 Nxd3 12.cxd3 Nh7 13.Nd5 c5 14.Nb5 Nf6 15.Ndc3 Nh7 16.d4 f5

17.dxc5 dxc5 18.Qb3+ Kh8 19.Rad1 Qb6 20.Nd5 Qd8 21.Ndc7 Bd7 22.Nxa8 Nf6 23.e5 Ne4 24.Nac7 Qc8 25.Nd5 Bh4 26.Nb6 Be6 27.Qc2 Qc6 28.Nc4 Ng3 29.Rd6 Nxf1 30.Rxc6 Nxe3 31.Nxe3 bxc6 32.Qxc5 Rd8 33.Nd6 Bg3

34.Nexf5 Bxf5 35.Nf7+ Kh7 36.Nxd8 Bxf4 37.e6 Bg5 38.Qxf5+ Kh8 39.Nf7+ Kg8 40.Nxg5 hxg5 41.Qf7+ Kh7 42.e7 Kh8 43.e8=Q+ Kh7 44.Qg6#.

Friday, February 7, 2020

Thursday, February 6, 2020

FIDE Mondays 2/3/2020

On Monday, I won this game at the Marshall Chess Club.

Round Three: Sicilian Defense, Najdorf Variation

Nura Baalla (USCF 1992) - Jim West (USCF 2200), Marshall Chess Club 2/3/2020

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.f3 e5 7.Nb3 Be7 8.Be3 O-O 9.Qd2 Be6 10.O-O-O Nbd7 11.g4 b5 12.g5 Nh5 13.Nd5 Bxd5 14.exd5 Rc8 15.h4 f5

16.g6 hxg6 17.Qg2 Qe8 18.Na5 Nb8 19.Be2 Rf6 20.Bg5 Nf4 21.Bxf4 exf4 22.Rdg1 Bd8 23.Nb3 Bb6 24.Re1 Qe3+ 25.Kb1 Qf2 26.Qf1 Qxf1 27.Rhxf1 Kf7 28.Rh1 Rh8 29.Rh2 Nd7 30.Nc1 Be3 31.Nd3 Nb6 32.Rd1 Nxd5

33.Ne1 Nb6 34.Ng2 Bf2 35.h5 gxh5 36.Nxf4 Bg3 37.Rxh5 Re8, White resigns.