The November Check Is in the Mail

Andrew Leonard

Game of the Month

Andrew Leonard of Columbia, SC, who shared first place earlier this year in a Walter Muir tournament, earned an uncontested first place in this Swift Quad.



John Collins

            Thomas Babcock   15C12   4-2

Swift Quad

              Andrew Leonard     16SQ08   5 ½-½

Trophy Quads

            Robert Ulrich    15Q07   6-0

Walter Muir

            Thomas Kirk    17W12   4 ½-1 ½

            Thomas Haggard   17W14  4 ½-1 ½

            Alex Strobehn        17W14  4 ½-1 ½

            Ronald Roberts      17W16  5-1

White finishes strongly in this Walter  Muir fight.

IM Tom Williams

IM Tom Williams has won the first California State Championship (ICCF).  The double round robin tournament began in fall 2016 with six of the highest rated California residents invited, including two IM’s and two SIM’s.  There was only one decisive game in the tournament which Tom won.

California Championship 2016

“The technique of good correspondence chess lies in playing good moves.”

-Graham Mitchell


Michael Polonski

Michael Polonski, born November 19, 1926 in Kiev, Ukraine, died October 11, 2017, aged 90.  Michael was a professional boxer in Germany, a pro soccer player in Belgium and Canada, and a player coach for the Montreal Ukrainians.  He was also a member of the USCF from 1970 to 2017.

Sometimes games end on a single, surprise, strong move – and here is a case in point.  White’s last move wins an exchange.

In order to save the c-Pawn on Move 24, the King is lost.  That is just not a very good bargain.

When White misses the speculative sacrifice of 21.  Ng5 !?, the game slowly evolves into a draw.


The following games are from the ICCF California Championship.  They may be “just” draws but they represent some hard silicon fighting.

With the two Bishops and a protected passed center Pawn on d5, White looks like an easy winner, but Black has something to say about that.

At the end of this game (after the likely 28…. Nf6) the balanced position of all the pieces is remarkable.

Next month is the annual miniature column.  If you have an interesting game of 20 moves or under, send it to [email protected] for possible publication.

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