Check Is In The Mail: October 2021


I hope October finds you and yours healthy and happy and ready to enjoy this fall season.

Our first game comes to us courtesy of veteran postal heavyweight James Ellis. The following win in Golden Knights Semifinals section 18Ns03 qualified James for the 2019 GK Finals. In the game, Ellis snares a pawn and then an exchange from Paul Ott – and then forces a series of trades, including the queens and both pairs of knights - based on each of his knights reaching Nd4, to eventually put away the win.

[pgn][Event "2018 Golden Knights Semifinal (18Ns03)"] [White "Ott, Paul (2102)"] [Black "Ellis, James R. (2351)"] [Result "0-1"] 1. e3 d5 2. d4 Nf6 3. Bd3 c5 4. c3 Nc6 5. f4 Bg4 6. Ne2 e6 7. Nd2 Bd6 8. O-O Qc7 9. Qe1 Bf5 10. Bxf5 exf5 11. c4 O-O 12. cxd5 Nxd5 13. Nc3 Nxe3 14. Nb5 Qa5 15. Nxd6 Nc2 16. Qh4 Nxa1 17. Nxf5 Qd8 18. Qg4 g6 19. dxc5 h5 20. Qg3 Nd4 21. Nxd4 Qxd4+ 22. Qf2 Rad8 23. Qxd4 Rxd4 24. Nf3 Rd5 25. Bd2 Nc2 26. Rc1 Nd4 27. Nxd4 Rxd4 28. Rc2 Rfd8 29. Be3 Re4 30. Rc3 f5 31. h3 Rd1+ 32. Kf2 a5 33. c6 bxc6 34. Rxc6 Kf7 35. Rc3 Rb1 36. Rc2 Rb4 37. Bc1 Ke6 38. Kg3 Kd5 39. b3 a4 40. Kh4 axb3 41. axb3 R1xb3 42. Kg5 Rg3+ 43. Kh4 Rgb3 44. Kg5 Rb6 45. Ra2 Rg3+ 46. Kh4 Rd3 47. Rf2 Ra6 48. Kg5 Kc4 49. Bb2 Ra2 50. Kxg6 Rb3 51. Bd4 Ra6+ 0-1 [/pgn]
Our second game comes from Victor Palciauskas section 21VP04 where Egbert Schroeer won the section with an undefeated 6-0 score. Here is his favorite game from that event, this one against Matt LaDuke. White starts a clever expansion in the center with 10. c5 to push Black’s King Knight back. Then he sacs a pawn with 13. e6. Then he pitches in a knight for two pawns with the promise of a third pawn or a strong attack. Black tries to give back an Exchange to blunt White’s attack. Egbert takes the Rook and three pawns versus Bishop + Knight advantage and grinds it down to a winning endgame with two connected passed pawns. (Annotations by Mr. Schroeer)
[pgn][Event "2021 Victor Palciauskas ICCF (21VP04)"] [White "Schroeer, Egbert (1949)"] [Black "LaDuke, Matt (unr)"] [Result "1-0"] 1. Nf3 Nf6 2. g3 g6 3. Bg2 Bg7 4. O-O O-O 5. c4 d6 6. d4 Nbd7 7. Nc3 e5 8. e4 c6 9. h3 Qb6 10. c5 dxc5 11. dxe5 Ne8 12. Na4 Qa6 13. e6 fxe6 14. Be3 {14… b6 15. Nc3 Qb7 16. Qb3 Ne5 17. Nex5 Bxe5} b6 15. Rc1 {15. Rc1 Ne5 16. Nxe5 Bxe5 17. Nc3 Ng7 18. f4 Bf6 19. e5 Be7} Ndf6 16. Qc2 Nc7 17. Rfd1 Nb5 18. Nxc5 bxc5 19. Bxc5 Re8 20. a4 Nc7 21. Ne5 Bh6 22. f4 Bf8 23. Bd4 Nd7 24. Nxc6 e5 25. Bf1 {need to move Qb7; then Bc4+; Kg7 or Kh8 (bad); f4xe5} Qb7 26. Bc4+ Kg7 {fx5 (questionable due Qxc6?), better Nxe5...} 27. Nxe5 Nxe5 {need to analyze: Qc3? Ba2? Bxe5? fxe5? Bd5?} 28. Bxe5+ Rxe5 29. fxe5 Be6 30. Bxe6 Nxe6 31. Qc6 Qxc6 32. Rxc6 Ng5 33. e6 Kf6 34. h4 Nf3+ {Kg2, Ne5? Ra6 and keep pressure} 35. Kg2 Ne5 36. Ra6 h5 37. Rf1+ Ke7 38. Rc1 Kf6 39. e7+ Kxe7 40. Rc7+ Nd7 41. Raxa7 Rxa7 42. Rxa7 Bg7 43. b4 Bd4 44. Rb7 1-0 [/pgn]
Last month I reported the sad news that correspondence chess stalwart Ed Addis passed away on August 20th. Ed was an ironman of correspondence chess, having played over 900 US Chess correspondence chess games since 1974. He had near-double digit games played against several of the current heavyweights of correspondence chess: Gary Adams, Robert Boles, Greg Cross, James Ellis, William Jempty, Robert Miehm, and Barry Walker, as well as 18 (!) against Michael Buss. Of particular note, Ed achieved the goal of playing at least one postal chess games against someone in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, accomplishing that feat in 2007. At the time of Ed’s passing, he was working on two additional goals, winning a game against a player from all 50 states and DC, as well as playing at least one game using each of ECO’s 500+ main openings. He was deep into achieving both of those goals.

In addition to his correspondence chess exploits, Ed was an Air Force veteran (played on the AF Chess Team) and a voluntary fixture in Oregon scholastic chess. After retiring, Ed ran an entire school district’s chess program in his home state and coached a high school team led by Alexandra Botez that won the Oregon HS chess championship. Chris and I received multiple emails describing the incredible positive impact Mr. Addis made in both the overall and scholastic Oregon chess community. He will be missed.

As an example of Ed’s skill as a player I offer our third game this month, one of the two losses he inflicted upon me in Golden Knights play. (They are the only completed games I have of his at present.) A fine piece of strategical wizardry on his part.

[pgn][Event "2019 Golden Knights Preliminary (19N08)"] [White "Addis, Ed (2126)"] [Black "Cox, Larry (2096)"] [Result "1-0"] 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.g3 Bb7 5.Bg2 Be7 6.0-0 0-0 7.Qc2 c5 8.dxc5 bxc5 9.Nc3 d6 10.Rd1 Qb6 11.b3 Nc6 12.e4 Rfd8 13.Qe2 Rd7 14.Bb2 Rad8 15.Rd2 d5 16.exd5 exd5 17.cxd5 Nxd5 18.Nxd5 Rxd5 19.Rxd5 Rxd5 20.Re1 Bf8 21.Ne5 Nxe5 22.Bxd5 Bxd5 23.Qxe5 Qb7 24.Qc3 Bh1 25.f3 Qxf3 26.Qxf3 Bxf3 27.Ba3 f5 28.Rc1 a6 29.Bxc5 Be4 30.Kf2 g5 31.Bxf8 Kxf8 32.Ke3 g4 33.Rc7 Bb1 34.a4 h5 35.b4 h4 36.gxh4 1-0 [/pgn]
Our fourth game decided our first ICCF Victor Palciauskas event, 21VP01. Joydeep Bhattacharyya won to go 6-0 while Chris Wainscott finished with 4.5/6. Black steals a pawn, with check, in the early middlegame (that White may have overlooked when executing a Knight fork?). Later, Black uses a ruthless 21... Qf2, threatening a variety of back-rank mates, to seal the deal.
[pgn][Event "2021 Victor Palciauskas Section 21VP01"] [White "Wainscott, Chris (1923)"] [Black "Bhattacharyya, Joydeep (1734)"] [Result "0-1"] 1.d4 d5 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.cxd5 exd5 5.Bg5 c6 6.Nf3 Bf5 7.e3 Nbd7 8.Bd3 Bxd3 9.Qxd3 Be7 10.O-O O-O 11.Rac1 Ne4 12.Bf4 Ndf6 13.Ne5 Bd6 14.f3 Nxc3 15.Rxc3 Nh5 16.Qf5 Nxf4 17.exf4 Qb6 18.Nd7 Qxd4+ 19.Kh1 Rfe8 20.Qg4 Re2 21.Rb3 Qf2 22.Rg1 Re1 0-1 [/pgn]
In our final game this month, Thomas Babcock cemented his victory in 20C04 with this draw against Allen Woollen. After hair-raising attacks on opposite sides of the board, the game resulted in just what one might expect... a draw where the game is balanced on a knife’s edge.

If you get a chance, at least look at this ending. For a while I couldn’t figure out why it was a draw after QxN (as a continuation), but I finally got it – I think, and it’s pretty cool.

[pgn][Event "2020 Collins Memorial (20C04)"] [White "Babcock, Thomas (2162)"] [Black "Woollen, Allen (1979)"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Bg5 e6 7.f4 Be7 8.Qf3 Qc7 9.0-0-0 Nbd7 10.g4 b5 11.Bxf6 Nxf6 12.g5 Nd7 13.f5 0-0 14.Bh3 b4 15.fxe6 bxc3 16.exd7 Bxd7 17.Bxd7 cxb2+ 18.Kb1 Qxd7 19.Rhg1 g6 20.h4 Rfc8 21.h5 Rab8 22.hxg6 fxg6 23.Rd2 Rc5 24.Qe3 Ra5 25.Nb3 Re5 26.Rd5 Rb5 27.Rxe5 Rxe5 28.Nd2 Qe6 29.Qf4 Ra5 30.Nb3 Re5 31.Nd4 Qc4 32.Rf1 Rc5 33.Qf3 Kg7 34.Qh3 Kg8 35.Qf3 Kg7 1/2-1/2 [/pgn]
Next month – more games!

See you then,


Notes from the Office

New Rules! New Correspondence Chess rules come into effect starting October 1. Check out this article posted earlier this month.

US Chess is seeking a new Correspondence Chess Program Coordinator. Applications are due by October 21 and more details can be found in this announcement posted on the US Chess website.

I have posted the standings for the Preliminary Sections for the 2021 Golden Knights and 2021 Electronic Knights. The hope is to update them on a weekly basis so that players can use it to both check out the latest standings and also note if there are any missing results.

Recent Event Winners

2016 Electronic Knights Champion, Tim Corkum!

20C06, Ed Addis, Brian Flowers and Bryan Petersen, 4-2

20W24, Lelan Conti, 6-0
20W25, Ronald Roberts, 4.5-1.5
20W28, John Badger, 5-1
20W34, Sabrina Shenker and Adelynne Yang, 5-1
20W37, Medha Kalidas and Tatiana Savchenko, 5-1
21W26, Raymond Grinsteinner, 6-0

21VP08, Bradley Smith, 6-0