Check Is In The Mail: March 2022


I hope everyone is having a wonderful 2022 so far and getting ready for spring!

Our first game this month features a Larsen’s Opening by Robert Angres and an answer to it by Robert Irons. In the early middlegame, Black gets a space advantage and a persistent edge. Black seems to be winning but it’s not clear (at least to me) exactly how. Eventually he’s able to tie up a part of White’s army defending a weakness on f2, while opening the queenside and taking control of the b-file. A sudden shift of this attack to the queenside helps Black invade against White’s uncastled king and bring the game to a sudden end with a stunning final move.

[pgn] [Event "2021 Walter Muir E-Quad (21W39)"] [White "Angres, Robert (1857)"] [Black "Irons, Robert (1906)"] [Result "0-1"] 1.b3 e5 2.Bb2 Nc6 3.e3 Nf6 4.Bb5 Bd6 5.Na3 Na5 6.Nc4 Nxc4 7.Bxc4 O-O 8.Nf3 Qe7 9.h4 c6 10.d4 e4 11.Nd2 Bc7 12.Be2 d5 13.c4 a5 14.a4 Bd6 15.Qc1 Bg4 16.Ba3 Bxe2 17.Bxd6 Qxd6 18.c5 Qd8 19.Kxe2 Ng4 20.g3 b6 21.Ra2 bxc5 22.Qxc5 h5 23.b4 Qf6 24.Rf1 axb4 25.Qxb4 c5 26.dxc5 Rab8 27.Qa3 Qa6+ 28.Ke1 Ne5 29.Ra1 Rb2 0-1[/pgn]

In Passing

A sad note to report. Lawrence Coplin of Gainesville, Florida passed away on January 17, 2022. Mr. Coplin was a stalwart correspondence chess player, reaching a max US Chess postal rating of 2436. Lawrence also had the distinction of playing in the 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, and 2007 Absolute tournaments. If anyone has a game of his they’d like to share, please send it in.

In our second game, from Collins Quad 19C10 Barry Walker uses a Leningrad Dutch to upend William Baumer in a fine effort by both players. Early on, both players try to see who can amass the most space on the queenside. A small slip by White allows Black to win the bishop pair. Then Black is able to jam a knight into e4 as 21.Nxe4 would fail. Afterward Black keeps a hold on the position, gaining more and more control and removing weaknesses, while trading down firepower. White defends admirably trying to set up a drawn position, but Black’s edge is too much to overcome.

[pgn] [Event "2019 Collins Quad (19C10)"] [White "Baumer, William (1930)"] [Black "Walker, Barry (2227)"] [Result "0-1"] 1.d4 f5 2.g3 Nf6 3.Nf3 g6 4.Bg2 Bg7 5.0-0 0-0 6.b3 d6 7.Bb2 c6 8.Nbd2 Na6 9.c4 Bd7 10.e3 b5 11.Qc2 Nb4 12.Qb1 bxc4 13.bxc4 Rb8 14.a3 Nd3 15.Qxd3 Rxb2 16.Rfb1 Rxb1 17.Rxb1 Qc7 18.Qb3 c5 19.d5 Qa5 20.Qd3 Ne4 21.Rb7 Bc8 22.Rb5 Qc3 23.Bf1 Qxd3 24.Bxd3 Nc3 25.Rb3 Bf6 26.Nb1 Na2 27.Bf1 h6 28.Rb8 Ba6 29.Rxf8+ Kxf8 30.Nfd2 Nc3 31.Nxc3 Bxc3 32.Nb1 Ba5 33.f3 e6 34.e4 fxe4 35.fxe4 Bc8 36.Bd3 Ke7 37.e5 exd5 38.cxd5 dxe5 39.Bxg6 Kd6 40.Kf2 Kxd5 41.Ke3 c4 42.Be4+ Kc5 43.Bh7 c3 44.Be4 Kc4 45.Bc2 Bb7 46.h4 Bb6+ 47.Ke2 e4 48.Bd1 Kd4 0-1[/pgn]

2014 Golden Knights

The 2014 Golden Knights tournament has finished. (Yes, I’m sure the tournament is over this time!) Finishing in first, and second place is Michael Buss of Indianapolis. Congrats!! This is Buss’ third clear Golden Knights championship and fourth championship overall. One hundred and forty-eight entered competition in 21 preliminary sections, followed by six semi-final sections, and culminating in two final sections.

Place – Name Weighted Score Prize

1st – Michael Buss 39.45 $592
2nd - Michael Buss 39.00 $370
3rd – Gary Adams 37.25 $222
4th – Thomas Connelly 35.15 $74
5th – Gregory Cross 35.00 $74
6th – James Ellis 33.90 $74
7th – Michael Calogridis 31.25 $74
8th – Abe Wilson 26.00 $74
9th – Edward Addis 25.00 $74
10th – Robert Miehm 23.85 $74

In taking the win, Buss was perfect in his preliminary (14N17) and semi-final (14Ns04) sections. He scored three wins and three draws in the final (14Nf02) section. A perfect score (winning all 18 games) would total 46.20.

Last month I received this King’s Gambit Accepted in the mail, so I just had to include it! Here, Christopher Ward turns the tables on Philip Krummrich. In a complicated middlegame, Black uncorks a hidden (at least to me) rook move at move 22 to push White to the brink of losing a piece. Two sharp moves later, he pushes White over it.

[pgn] [Event "2022 Golden Knights (22EN02)"] [White "Krummrich, Philip (1588)"] [Black "Ward, Christopher (1697)"] [Result "0-1"] 1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 g5 4.h4 g4 5.Ne5 Nf6 6.d4 d6 7.Nd3 Nxe4 8.Bxf4 Bg7 9.c3 O-O 10.Be2 c5 11.d5 g3 12.Nd2 Nf2 13.Nxf2 gxf2+ 14.Kxf2 Qf6 15.g3 Re8 16.Bb5 Bd7 17.Bxd7 Nxd7 18.Nf3 c4 19.Qc2 Ne5 20.Bxe5 Rxe5 21.Rad1 Rae8 22.Rd2 Re3 23.Qd1 Bh6 24.Rc2 Rd3 0-1 [/pgn]

2022 US Chess Absolute

The 47th edition of the US Chess Absolute tournament began play on March 1st. The tournament is a 13-player round robin event held on the International Correspondence Chess Federation (ICCF) server. The event is rated through US Chess and the ICCF.

Competing this year are:

Harry Ingersol (CA) 2382
Gordon Magat (NY) 2380
Tim Corkum (WI) 2377
John Millett (CA) 2373
Keith Rodriguez (FL) 2359
David Sogin (KY) 2348
John Walton (WA) 2341
Joel Levine (NY) 2341
Johnny Owens (KY) 2339
Ferdinand Burmeister (CA) 2334
Patrick Ryan (NJ) 2328
Timothy Harris (SC) 2295
Gregory Cross (TX) 2295

The top 13 players on the January Top 100 Correspondence Chess Players list received invitations to compete. If a player declined their invitation, the next player on the list received an invitation until 13 players accepted. Congrats and good skill to each of the competitors!


For our final game this month, I present to you Charles Jacobs – Robert Heisler from Walter Muir E-Quad Section 21W46. White establishes a broad center against Black’s Queen’s Indian Defense, which White allows to be reduced to trade off the white squared bishops and get a lead in development. If looked, at least to me, like White was slowly parlaying that into an expanding positional advantage. When Black slips White pounces…first with 21.Ne2 intending Nf4…well, check out the finish for yourself!

[pgn] [Event "2021 Walter Muir E-Quad (21W46)"] [White "Jacobs, Charles (2190)"] [Black "Heisler, Robert(2015)"] [Result "1-0"] 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.g3 Ba6 5.b3 Bb4+ 6.Bd2 Be7 7.Nc3 O-O 8.e4 d5 9.cxd5 Bxf1 10.Kxf1 exd5 11.e5 Ne4 12.Kg2 c5 13.Qe2 Nxc3 14.Bxc3 Qd7 15.Rad1 Nc6 16.Rhe1 Qe6 17.Ng1 Rfd8 18.Qd3 c4 19.bxc4 dxc4 20.Qf3 Rd5 21.Ne2 Qd7 22.Nf4 Rd8 23.e6 1-0 [/pgn]


Next month, more games!



Recent Event Winners

20T03, Charlie Leach, 4.5-1.5

19C12, Bruce Weiner, 6-0

21W28, Joe Beauvais, 5-1
21W30, Linda DeChaine, 4.5-1.5
21W34, Brian Perry, 4-2
21W38, Brandon Vila, 5.5-.5
21W39, Jeffrey Reger, 5.5-.5
21W40, Christopher Ward, 5-1
21W47, Victor Huffstatler, 4.5-1-5

21VP12, Wallace Mann, 5-1
21VP13, Hank Cox, 5.5-0.5