The Check is in the Mail: February 2020

Victor Palciauskas, World Champion 1978-1984
In honor of Victor Palciauskas winning the World Correspondence Chess Championship, US Chess initiated the Palciauskas Tournaments, a seven-man tournament with a twenty-five dollar entry fee and a $130 first prize fund with a certificate signed by Victor Palciauskas himself. The Palciauskas tournament is divided into three rating divisions so everyone has a chance to be a victor. A game of Victor’s from his championship tournament can be found later in this issue of “The Check”. This Victor Palciauskas that began in 2017 produced a winner – Rick Johnson of Fremont, California.
[pgn]

[Event "17V02"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2017.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Johnson, Rick"]
[Black "Schilling, Patrick"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "A53"]
[WhiteElo "1965"]
[BlackElo "1899"]
[PlyCount "53"]
[EventDate "2017.??.??"]

1. e4 d6 2. d4 Nf6 3. Bd3 {An unusual choice. Most played is 3. Nc3.} e5 4. d5
{And here the main choice is 4. Nf3.} Nbd7 5. c4 c6 {Xu-Zhu, China 2018
continued 5...Nc5 6. Nc3 Nxd3+ 7. Qxd3 g6 which was equal.} 6. Nc3 Be7 7. Nge2
O-O 8. O-O cxd5 9. cxd5 Nc5 10. Bc2 {Weaker is 9. b4 as in Tounta-Petraki,
Greece 2019 when Black was equal after 9...Nxd3.} a5 {An improvement over 10...
a6 11. b4 with the advantage in Sukhareva-Fominykh, Blitz 2010.} 11. Be3 b6 {
Black reasons that ....b6 will be necessary sooner or later and so commits it
now. He could temporize by 22...Qc7.} 12. a3 $1 {White's plan is simple but
effective -- drive back the most aggressively posted Black piece with b4.} Ng4
13. Bc1 {The Bishop remains better posted after 13. Bd2 keeping the Rooks and
Queen connected and still threatening b4.} Bg5 $2 {Diagram # Although this has
a commendable positional objective of tradng off Black's bad Bishop, it has a
tactical flaw that Johnson finds.} 14. b4 $1 Nb7 {Black's game is tgosswed
into retrograde after 14...axb4 15. Bxg5 Qxg5 16. axb4 Na6 17, b5 Nc7 18. Rxa8
Nxa8 19. Qd3} 15. h3 axb4 16. Bxg5 Qxg5 17. axb4 Rxa1 18. Qxa1 Nh6 19. Qc1 Qe7
{Black's Queen is his only active piece. To exchange it is to lose the endgame.
} 20. Qe3 f5 {Faced with complete passivity after 20...Qd8 21, Na4 b5 22. Nac3
Bd7 23, Qa7 Qc7 24. Bd3, Black instead tries to forrm a counterattack, but his
passivbe pieces don't support such an action.} 21. Qxb6 f4 22. f3 Nf7 23. Ra1 {
Wite could also defend and carry throuigh on his queenside action by 23. Qf2
g5 (23..Ng5 24. h4!) 24. Rc1! h5 25. Na4 Bd7 26. Nb6 Nh6 27. Bd3 Be8 28. Ba6
g4 29. Nc8 winning.} Qh4 24. Kf1 Ng5 25. Ng1 Nxh3 {What else?} 26. gxh3 Bxh3+
27. Ke2 1-0

[/pgn]
LAST CALL FOR 2020 ABSOLUTE BIDS The 2020 Absolute is still a few members short of its quorum.  The Absolute is played on the ICCF server.  This may be your chance to play with the best US correspondence chess players.  If you are interested in playing, remember computer engines are allowed in Absolute play.  Entry is free so send in your bid to play today.  Entries should be sent to chesskinetics@stny.rr.com.  Come join the skill and fun! CCLA            The Correspondence Chess League of America  (CCLA) regularly publishes its magazine The Chess Correspondent four times a year.  In the magazine (available to CCLA members) there are interesting articles and postal and server chess games. The October-December issue had a particularly interesting game which I would like to share with readers.  Hang on to your mittens and watch this CCLA game between two Division One players.
[pgn]

[Event "USA/S71999 (USA)"]
[Site "ICCF"]
[Date "2017.10.16"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Lehr, Mark"]
[Black "Cross, Gregory W"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C42"]
[WhiteElo "2201"]
[BlackElo "2129"]
[PlyCount "121"]
[EventDate "2017.??.??"]
[WhiteTeam "Desperados"]
[BlackTeam "PA Keystones"]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. Nxe5 O-O 5. Ng4 Nxg4 6. Qxg4 d5 7. Qh5 dxe4
8. a3 g6 9. Qh6 Bd6 10. d3 exd3 11. Bxd3 Re8+ 12. Be3 Bf8 13. Qf4 Bd6 14. Qa4
Bd7 15. Qb3 Nc6 16. O-O-O Na5 17. Qd5 Bc6 18. Qa2 Qf6 19. Nd5 Qe6 20. Be2 b5
21. Bg4 Qe5 22. f4 Qg7 23. Bd4 Bxd5 24. Qxd5 Bxf4+ 25. Kb1 Be5 26. Bd7 c6 27.
Qe4 f5 28. Qh4 Qxd7 29. Bxe5 Qf7 30. Bc3 Nc4 31. Qd4 Re5 32. Rhe1 c5 33. Qf2
Rxe1 34. Rxe1 Rc8 35. Qh4 Kf8 36. g4 f4 37. Qh6+ Kg8 38. Qg5 Ne3 39. Qe5 Kf8
40. h4 Nc4 41. Qg5 f3 42. h5 f2 43. Rf1 Ke8 44. Qh4 g5 45. Qxg5 Qf3 46. Qg8+
Kd7 47. Qxh7+ Kc6 48. Qg6+ Kc7 49. h6 Ne3 50. Qd3 Qg2 51. Rc1 f1=Q 52. Rxf1
Qxf1+ 53. Qxf1 Nxf1 54. g5 b4 55. Be5+ Kd7 56. g6 Nd2+ 57. Ka1 Nf3 58. h7 Ng5
59. Bf6 Ne4 60. g7 Nxf6 61. h8=Q 1-0

[/pgn]
JANUARY RESULTS Trophy Quads: David McDuffie    18SQ04    5-1 Delbert Area          17Q08      4 ½-1½ Jason Farnsworth   17Q08      4 ½-1½ John Collins Scott Sensiba       17C20        4 ½-1 ½ Charles Deknatel  19C04        6-0 OBITUARY Harold Feldheim, 80, of Hamden, Connecticut died on October 4, 2019.
[pgn]

[Event "corr"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "1988.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Sciarretta, Dominic"]
[Black "Feldheim, Harold"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "C06"]
[BlackElo "2034"]
[PlyCount "48"]
[EventDate "1988.??.??"]
[Source "Chess Mail"]

1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nd2 Nf6 4. e5 Nfd7 5. Bd3 c5 6. c3 b6 7. Qe2 a5 8. f4 Ba6
9. f5 exf5 10. e6 fxe6 11. Qxe6+ Qe7 12. Bxf5 cxd4 13. cxd4 Nc6 14. Ngf3 O-O-O
15. Kd1 Kb7 16. Re1 Nf6 17. Ng5 Qc7 18. Qf7 Nxd4 19. Qxc7+ Kxc7 20. Nf7 Nxf5
21. Nxh8 Ng4 22. Nf3 Nf2+ 23. Kc2 Bd3+ 24. Kb3 a4+ 0-1

[/pgn]
In remembrance of Theodore Bullockus, born May 29, 1917 who died October 11, 2008.  Bullockus was an ICCF International Arbiter.
[pgn]

[Event "Betins Memorial"]
[Site "corr thematic"]
[Date "1970.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Bullockus, Theodore (USA)"]
[Black "Robins, E.."]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C40"]
[PlyCount "57"]
[EventDate "1969.??.??"]
[EventType "corr"]
[Source "Chess Mail"]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 f5 3. Nxe5 Qf6 4. d4 d6 5. Nc4 fxe4 6. Ne3 Nc6 7. Nc3 Qg6 8.
Ned5 Kd8 9. Be3 Nf6 10. Nf4 Qf7 11. d5 Ne7 12. Qd4 Nf5 13. Qb4 b6 14. Bd2 Bb7
15. Qc4 c5 16. Ne6+ Kc8 17. O-O-O Ne7 18. Bg5 Bxd5 19. Nxd5 b5 {Diagram #} 20.
Qxb5 Qxe6 21. Nxe7+ Qxe7 22. Bxf6 gxf6 23. Qc6+ Kb8 24. Ba6 Bh6+ 25. Kb1 Qc7
26. Rxd6 Qxc6 27. Rxc6 Rd8 28. Rxf6 Bf8 29. Rf7 1-0

[/pgn]
Chris Brunt makes it look almost easy in conquering Expert Brian Flowers in this game from a six game match.
[pgn]

[Event "18M056"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2018.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Brunt, Chris"]
[Black "Flowers, Brian"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "E67"]
[WhiteElo "1870"]
[BlackElo "2139"]
[PlyCount "91"]
[EventDate "2018.??.??"]

1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3 g6 3. g3 Bg7 4. Bg2 O-O 5. O-O d6 6. c4 Nbd7 7. Nc3 e5 8. e3
Re8 9. a4 a5 10. h3 c6 11. Qc2 Qe7 12. b3 Nf8 13. dxe5 dxe5 14. Ba3 Qc7 15.
Rad1 Bf5 16. e4 Be6 17. Bd6 Qc8 18. Kh2 N6d7 19. Rd2 f5 20. Ng5 Nf6 21. Rfd1
Bh6 22. f4 Bxg5 23. fxg5 Nxe4 24. Bxe4 fxe4 25. Nxe4 Nd7 26. Ba3 Rd8 {Diagram #
} 27. Be7 Re8 28. Rxd7 Bxd7 29. Rxd7 Qxd7 30. Nf6+ Kg7 31. Nxd7 Rxe7 32. Nf6
Rd8 33. h4 Rd4 34. Qc3 b6 35. c5 Rb4 36. cxb6 Rxb6 37. Qxa5 Rb8 38. Qc5 Rbb7
39. Qxc6 Rb8 40. Nh5+ Kg8 41. Qd6 Reb7 42. Nf6+ Kf7 43. Qxe5 Rxb3 44. Ne4 Rb2+
45. Kh3 R2b6 46. Nd6+ 1-0

[/pgn]
With all White forces developed and looking for action, is it any wonder that Black’s position falls apart in less than a dozen moves after 15. d5!
[pgn]

[Event "15ENf02"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2015.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Finnegan, John"]
[Black "Angres, Robert"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "A80"]
[WhiteElo "1693"]
[BlackElo "1836"]
[PlyCount "43"]
[EventDate "2015.??.??"]

1. d4 f5 2. Bf4 Nf6 3. e3 g6 4. h4 h6 5. Nc3 Bg7 6. Qf3 d6 7. Qg3 Kf7 8. O-O-O
e6 9. Bc4 Nc6 10. Nge2 Bd7 11. a3 a6 12. Bd3 Nh5 13. Qf3 Nxf4 14. Nxf4 Qf6 {
Diagram #} 15. d5 Nd8 16. dxe6+ Bxe6 17. Nxe6 Kxe6 18. e4 Rf8 19. e5 Qe7 20.
exd6 cxd6 21. Nd5 Qf7 22. Bc4 1-0

[/pgn]
White gains the two Bishops at the cost of the exchange.  It turns out to be a rare bargain.
[pgn]

[Event "17ENf01"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2017.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Leonard, Andrew"]
[Black "McCartney, Patrick"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C18"]
[WhiteElo "2269"]
[BlackElo "1987"]
[PlyCount "69"]
[EventDate "2017.??.??"]

1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. e5 Ne7 5. a3 Bxc3+ 6. bxc3 c5 7. Qg4 Kf8 8. Bd2
Qe8 9. a4 Bd7 10. dxc5 h5 11. Qf4 Bc6 12. Bd3 Nd7 13. Qe3 d4 14. cxd4 Bxg2 15.
Be4 Nf5 16. Qd3 Bxh1 17. Bxh1 {Diagram #} Rd8 18. Qe4 Nb8 19. Ne2 Nc6 20. Bg5
Nfxd4 21. Bxd8 Nxe2 22. Bc7 Nc3 23. Qd3 Nd5 24. Bd6+ Kg8 25. Rb1 Qc8 26. Qb5 b6
27. c4 Nc3 28. Qxc6 Qxc6 29. Bxc6 Nxb1 30. Kd1 bxc5 31. Bxc5 Nc3+ 32. Kc2 Nxa4
33. Bxa4 Kh7 34. Kd3 Kg6 35. Bd6 1-0

[/pgn]
It takes a fine defensive game by Barry Walker to stem White’s attack and earn the full point.
[pgn]

[Event "16Ns04"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2016.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Funston, David"]
[Black "Walker, Barry"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "B00"]
[PlyCount "62"]
[EventDate "2018.??.??"]
[EventType "corr"]

1. e4 b6 2. d4 Bb7 3. Bd3 Nf6 4. Qe2 e6 5. Nf3 Bb4+ 6. c3 Be7 7. O-O d5 8. e5
Nfd7 9. Be3 c5 10. Nbd2 Nc6 11. a3 O-O 12. Ne1 f5 13. exf6 Bxf6 14. Qh5 g6 15.
Qg4 e5 16. Bf5 exd4 17. cxd4 cxd4 18. Bh6 {Diagram #} Nde5 19. Be6+ Kh8 20. Qh3
Bg7 21. f4 Bxh6 22. Qxh6 Qd6 23. Qh3 Rae8 24. f5 Ba6 25. Rf2 Ne7 26. Ndf3 Nxf3+
27. Nxf3 Nxf5 28. Bxf5 Rxf5 29. Qh6 Qf4 30. Qxf4 Rxf4 31. Rd2 d3 0-1

[/pgn]
And now, as promised, Victor Palciauskas shows what made him World Champion.  Watch his d-Pawn!
[pgn]

[Event "XIII World Chmpshp"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "1989.??.??"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Goldenberg"]
[Black "Palciauskas, Vytas"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "E32"]
[PlyCount "74"]
[EventDate "1989.??.??"]

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. Qc2 O-O 5. a3 Bxc3+ 6. Qxc3 b6 7. Bg5 Bb7 8.
Nh3 h6 9. Bh4 d5 10. cxd5 exd5 11. e3 c5 $1 12. Bd3 Nc6 13. dxc5 d4 14. Qc2 Ne5
15. O-O bxc5 16. Rad1 Qb6 17. Bxf6 Qxf6 18. Be4 d3 {Diagram #} 19. Qa4 Bxe4 20.
Qxe4 c4 21. Nf4 Qd6 22. Rd2 Rab8 23. Rc1 Rb5 24. h3 Qb8 25. Rxc4 Nxc4 26. Qxc4
Rxb2 27. Rxb2 Qxb2 28. Qxd3 Qc1+ 29. Kh2 Qc7 30. g3 Rd8 31. Qe4 Rd2 32. Qe8+
Kh7 33. Qe4+ g6 34. Kg2 Qc2 35. Qf3 Qf5 36. h4 Kg7 37. g4 Qf6 0-1

[/pgn]

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