Check Is In The Mail: September 2022

Greetings!

In this month’s issue we look at pushing the “b” pawn to open, either one square or two, from both sides of the board.

I smiled when Paul Ott of Glendevon, Florida submitted the following game featuring the Sokolsky, Polish or Orangutan opening against long-time CC player A. George Stewart of Sunnyside, Washington. I used to play 1.b4 exclusively in my "earlier" years of US Chess CC events. Not so much now!

[pgn][Event "2020 Golden Knights (20N16)"] [White "Ott, Paul (2175)"] [Black "Stewart, A. George (1706)"] [Result "1-0"]1.b4 e5 2.Bb2 f6 3.e4 Bxb4 4.Bc4 Nc6 5.f4 d6 6.f5 (6.Nc3 $142) 6...Nge7 7.Qh5+ g6 8.fxg6 Nxg6 9. Nf3 (9.a3 $142 Bc5 10. Ne2) 9...Qe7 (9...Qd7 $17 10.Nc3 Nce7) 10.Nh4 $1 $11 Qf8 $146 (10...Qg7 11.Nf5 Qf8 12.O-O Bd7 13.c3 Bc5+ 14.d4 Bb6 15.Kh1 O-O-O 16.Qf3 Na5) 11.Nxg6 (11.Nc3 $5) 11...hxg6 12.Qxg6+ Ke7 13.a3 Ba5 (13...Rh6 14.Qg3 Bc5 15.Nc3 $11) 14.Nc3 Bxc3 15.Bxc3 Rh6 (15...Nd8 $15) 16.Qg3 Nd4 (16...Be6 $11 17.Bxe6 Kxe6) 17.Bxd4 $16 exd4 18.O-O-O (18.Rb1 $142) 18...Be6 (18...Bd7 $142) 19.Qd3 (19.Bxe6 $16 Kxe6 20.Qd3) 19...Qf7 (19...Bxc4 $14 20.Qxc4 c5) 20.Bxe6 Qxe6 21.Qxd4 Rh5 (21...Rg8 $14) 22.Kb2 (22. h3 $16) 22...Rb5+ 23. Ka1 Rh8 (23...Rc5 $11) 24.g3 (24.h3 $14) 24...Rhh5 $11 25.Rb1 Rhe5 (25...Rbc5 $11) 26.d3 $2 (26.Qxa7 $6 Ra5 27.Qe3 Rxe4 $14) (26.Rxb5 $18 Rxb5 27.d3) 26...Ra5 (26...Rbc5 $1 $11) 27.Rb3 $1 $14 (27.Rxb7 Rxa3+ 28.Kb2 Qa2+ 29.Kc1 Rc5 $11) 27...b6 $1 28.h4 (28.Qc3 $14) 28...f5 (28...d5 $1 $11) 29.exf5 $16 Qxf5 30.Rg1 (30.g4 $14 Qf3 31.Rhb1) 30...c5 (30...Kd8 $11) 31.Qc3 $1 $36 Qf2 (31...Ra4 $142) 32.Rbb1 Qd4 $2 (32...Kd7 $16) 33.Qxd4 $18 cxd4 34.Rb4 $2 (34.Ka2 $18 Re2 35.Rbe1) 34...Re2 $16 35.Kb2 $1 (35.Rxd4 Rxc2 36.a4 Rh2 $14) 35...Rc5 36.Rc1 (36.Rxd4 $6 Rexc2+ 37.Ka1 R5c3 $11) 36...Rg2 37.Rxd4 Rxg3 38.Kb3 (38.Rh1 $1 $16) 38...Rh3 $2 (38...Rg2 $1 $14) 39.Rg1 $1 $18 a5 $2 (39...d5 40. Rg7+ Kd6) 40.Rg5 $2 (40. Rg7+ $18 Ke6 41.Rg6+ Ke7 42.Rgxd6 (42.Rdxd6 Rxh4 43.Rge6+ Kf7 $16)) 40...Rxg5 $4 (40...Rxh4 $2 41.Rxc5 (41.Rxh4 Rxg5 42.Rh7+ Ke6 $11) 41...Rxd4 42.Rb5 $18) (40...Rh2 $16) 41.hxg5 Ke6 42.c4 Rg3 43.Rd5 b5 44.a4 $1 bxc4+ 45.Kxc4 1-0 [/pgn]

Next, we take a look at 1. b3, aka Larsen's Opening, Nimzowitsch-Larsen Attack, Queen's Fianchetto Opening, Baby-Orangutan etc. Robert Angres of Clovis, California takes on Robert Irons of Heyworth, Illinois.

[pgn][Event "2021 Walter Muir E-Quad (21W39)"] [White "Angres, Robert L. S.(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 (6. Be2 $11) 6... Nxc4 $15 7. Bxc4 O-O (7... c6 $1 $15) 8. Nf3 (8. Ne2 $11) 8... Qe7 9. h4 $146 ( 9. e4 $11) (9. Be2 c6 10. O-O Bc7 11. a4 Re8 12. Ba3 Qe6 13. c4 e4 14. Nd4 Qe5 15. f4 exf3 16. Nxf3) 9... c6 $17 10. d4 (10. h5 $142) 10... e4 11. Nd2 Bc7 $1 12. Be2 d5 13. c4 (13. Nf1 $17) 13... a5 (13... Be6 $19 14. a4 Qd7) 14. a4 Bd6 15. Qc1 Bg4 16. Ba3 Bxe2 17. Bxd6 Qxd6 18. c5 Qd8 19. Kxe2 Ng4 (19... b6 $19 20. Qc3 Re8) 20. g3 (20. f3 $17 Nf6 21. fxe4) 20... b6 $19 (20... Qf6 21. Qe1 $15) 21. Ra2 bxc5 (21... Qf6 22. Rf1 $17) 22. Qxc5 h5 (22... Qf6 23. Rf1 $17) 23. b4 $2 (23. Rc2 Qf6 24. Rf1) 23... Qf6 24. Rf1 axb4 25. Qxb4 c5 (25... Nh2 26. Rg1 $17) 26. dxc5 Rab8 27. Qa3 Qa6+ 28. Ke1 Ne5 29. Ra1 Rb2 $1 0-1[/pgn]

Robert Angres is not averse to pushing the "b" pawn as Black to open the game, transposing to a Sicilian. Joseph Hawkins of Wilmington, North Carolina takes the point.

[pgn][Event "2022 Walter Muir E-Quad (22W10)"] [White "Hawkins, Joseph (1927)"] [Black "Angres, Robert L. S. (1857)"] [Result "1-0"]1. e4 b6 2. d4 Bb7 3. Bd3 e6 4. Nf3 c5 5. c3 Nf6 6. e5 Nd5 7. O-O $1 cxd4 8. cxd4 Nc6 9. Nc3 Nxc3 (9... Ncb4 $14) 10. bxc3 $16 Be7 11. Re1 d5 (11... Rc8 $16 ) 12. exd6 (12. h4 $18) 12... Qxd6 13. Ng5 $146 (13. Rb1 O-O 14. h4 Rac8 15. Ng5 Bxg5 16. Bxg5 Na5 17. Rc1 f5 18. Qe2 h6 19. Bd2 Rf6 20. c4 Rg6 21. d5 Rf8) 13... g6 $2 (13... h6 $16) 14. Qf3 $18 Nd8 15. Bb5+ Kf8 16. Ne4 (16. Nxf7 Qb8 17. Ne5+ (17. Bh6+ Kg8 $16) 17... Bxf3 $16) 16... Bxe4 $2 (16... h5 17. Nxd6 Bxf3) 17. Bh6+ (17. Rxe4 h6 18. Bf4 Qd5 $18) 17... Kg8 18. Qxe4 (18. Rxe4 a6 $18) 18... Rc8 19. Rac1 f5 (19... Bf8 $142) 20. Qe3 Kf7 21. Bf4 Qd5 22. c4 Qb7 23. Be5 Bf6 24. Bxf6 Kxf6 25. Qe5+ 1-0 [/pgn]

Two-time Golden Knights champion Abe Wilson (2000 & ’05) of Mililani, Hawaii holds the draw against Michael Gross of Vienna, Virginia in our final "b pawn" game of the month.

[pgn][Event "2017 Golden Knights (17Ns05)"] [White "Gross, Michael (2060"] [Black "Wilson, Abe (2199)"][Result "1/2-1/2"]1. b3 e5 2. Bb2 Nc6 3. e3 Nf6 4. Bb5 Bd6 5. Na3 Na5 (5... Be7 $15) 6. Be2 $11 a6 7. Nf3 Qe7 8. Nb1 O-O 9. d3 b5 10. c4 Bb7 11. Nbd2 $146 (11. O-O $14) (11. O-O bxc4 12. bxc4 e4 13. dxe4 Nxe4 14. Nc3 Rab8 15. Rb1 Nxc3 16. Bxc3 Bxf3 17. Bxf3 Nxc4) 11... Rab8 (11... c5) 12. O-O bxc4 13. dxc4 e4 14. Nd4 Qe5 15. g3 c5 16. b4 $1 cxb4 (16... cxd4 17. Bxd4 Qf5 18. bxa5 $16) 17. Qc2 Qg5 18. N2b3 Nc6 19. Rfd1 Nxd4 20. Bxd4 Be7 21. c5 Bc6 22. Rac1 h6 23. Na5 Bb5 24. Bxf6 Qxf6 25. Bxb5 (25. Nb3 $5) 25... Rxb5 26. Nb3 a5 $1 27. Qc4 Rb7 (27... Qc6 $2 28. Nd4 Qxc5 29. Nxb5 $18) 28. Nxa5 Ra7 29. Nb3 Rxa2 30. Rd2 Rxd2 31. Nxd2 Rb8 32. Qxe4 Qe6 33. Qxe6 fxe6 34. Nb3 Kf7 35. Rd1 Rb7 36. Kg2 g5 37. Kf3 1/2-1/2[/pgn]

Recent Event Winners

John W. Collins
19C06, John O'Brien, 4.5-1.5
20C05, Stephen Newman, 5.5-0.5
20C16, Gary Gallagher, 5-1
20C16, Everett Luoma, 5-1
21C11, Linda DeChaine, 6-0

Walter Muir E-Quad
22W07, Brandon Vila, 6-0
22W09, Washington Taylor, 5-1
22W12, Jay Hall, 4.5-1.5

Victor Palciauskas
22VP05, Boris Ratner, 5.5-0.5

Please note the new mailing address: US Chess Federation, Correspondence Chess, PO Box 775308, St Louis, MO 63177.

Next month we welcome Robert Irons who is taking the reins of The Check is In the Mail. Feel free to email your game submissions to him @ correspondence_chess@yahoo.com.

Until then, good chess!

Michael D. Buss, Correspondence Chess Coordinator

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