Monday, July 23, 2012

Speed Chess at Garden City, Tuesday, July 24

There will be no chess at the U of W on Tuesday, July 24.  Instead, the Manitoba Chess Association is having a blitz tournament in the main court of the Garden City Shopping Centre.   Time control:  7 minutes per player.   5 rounds.   No entry fee.   $100 prize fund, courtesy of Garden City Shopping Centre.    All are welcome to play.
Registration from 6:30 pm to 6:55 pm.   1st round starts at 7:00.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Cecil's Saturday Puzzle - July 14, 2012

from the Winnipeg Free Press
White to Mate in 2 (Myllyniemi)
1. d4

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Garden City - the scene at 3 pm

This area contains Yanofsky Memorabilia from the City of Winnipeg Archives

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Yanofsky Thematic (1.e4 e6) Rapid Tournament - Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Yanofsky Thematic (1.e4 e6) Rapid Tournament - Tuesday, July 17, 2012
 University of Winnipeg  -  Room 4CM42

All games must start with 1.e4 e6
Registration 6:35 - 6:55 pm
First round to start at 7 pm

4 round Swiss System  - Time Control  Game / 20 minutes + 10 second / free time.
This is not increment - it is Bronstein mode. (See below for more details)

Yanofsky played Bronstein in the 1948 Interzonal - the opening -- 1.e4 e6 !

 Normal tournament rules apply - touch move, etc.
Entry fee $ 10 -
Prizes are entries to the 2012 Abe Yanofsky Memorial.
(There will be one prize for every four entries received)

Bronstein Mode:

With the Bronstein timing method, time is always added after. This means
that the free time for each move (y) will be added to your clock as soon as
you have made your move and pressed the Time Control Button ie, after
you have made a move. However, , you cannot gain maximum free time (x) (ie, because y is less than or equal to x):
Suppose that (x) = 10 seconds (maximum free time):
Player A thinks, makes a move and presses the Time Control Button in 5
seconds. Only 5 seconds is added to player A's countdown clock after the
move has been made.
Player A thinks, makes a move and presses the top button in 10 seconds
or more. Only 10 seconds is added to player A's countdown clock after the
move has been made.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Chess returns to Garden City,event/34/chess-returns-to-garden-city

Thursday July 19, 2012
Garden City Shopping Centre will unveil a new oversized chess set to be enjoyed by patrons on July 19, 2012. The new game will feature a durable plastic set with 36” tall king pieces and a flexible mat that can be easily transported. It will be dedicated to the late Daniel Abraham (Abe) Yanofsky, who was Canada’s first chess grandmaster and former mayor of West Kildonan. City Archives will be displaying personal and professional artifacts from Yanofsky's life near the unveiling site.

Former Marketing Coordinator of Garden City Shopping Centre Jack Slessor will be the master of ceremony at a casual ribbon cutting ceremony to be attended by City Councillors Devi Sharma, Mike Pagtakhan, and Ross Eadie. The event will be held in Centre Court of the Garden City Shopping Centre and will begin at 3:00 pm on Thursday, July 19th.

The first match on the new board will be between Hot 103's Big Marv and QX 104's Michelle Cattanni who will be broadcasting on location. Afterwards, youth from the Manitoba Chess Association will play a blitz tournament that is sure to inspire players to sign up to participate in a free simultaneous exhibition match against chess master Trevor Vincent. Trevor, age 22, was recently crowned the Manitoba chess champion for the 5th straight year. Beginning at 5:00 pm, Trevor will take on any and all players at once, to a maximum 25 players.

Garden City Shopping Centre once featured a popular ‘Chess Square’ with large wooden pieces in a recessed pit located near the former Eaton’s department store. The pit was removed as part of the mall’s expansion project in 1998 to make way for the addition of the Canadian Tire and Winners stores.

Manitobans at the 2012 Canadian Open

 I was looking forward to watching some live games tonight, but I had not noticed that the final round started at 10 am this morning.

Jeff Babb, Kevin Li, and Jamie Campbell (in the U1600) all did well (despite all losing the last round).
James Currie and John Remillard also participated.

Jamie Campbell won the U1600 prize in the Blitz tournament.

Kevin Li at the CYCC

Kevin tied for 4th -6th

Canadian Youth Chess Championship

SwissSys Standings. Canadian Youth Chess Championship: U16

# Name St Rd 1 Rd 2 Rd 3 Rd 4 Rd 5 Rd 6 Rd 7 Tot TBrk[H] TBrk[C] TBrk[M]
1 Konstantin Semianiuk ON W11 W2 W3 D4 W5 W6 D9 6.0 100 25.5 25
2 Alexandru Florea ON W10 L1 W7 W6 W3 D4 D5 5.0 100 20.5 26
3 David Itkin ON W9 W5 L1 W8 L2 W7 W4 5.0 99 20 26
4 Tanraj S Sohal BC W12 D7 D5 D1 W8 D2 L3 4.0 100 18.5 26.5
5 Kevin Li MB W8 L3 D4 W12 L1 W10 D2 4.0 100 16 26
6 Stanley Wu ON B— L8 W11 L2 W7 L1 W13 4.0 100 15 20.5
7 Zachary Dukic ON W13 D4 L2 W9 L6 L3 W11 3.5 100 15 18.5
8 Lin [xin] Song ON L5 W6 W10 L3 L4 D9 B— 3.5 100 12 18
9 Andrew Toi BC L3 D11 W13 L7 W12 D8 D1 3.5 99 12.5 16
10 Kyle Zheng BC L2 B— L8 D11 W13 L5 W12 3.5 99 11 12
11 Conrad Burgert BC L1 D9 L6 D10 B— W13 L7 3.0 100 9 14
12 Andrew Lee BC L4 W13 H— L5 L9 B— L10 2.5 100 9 11
13 Colin VanDusen ON L7 L12 L9 B— L10 L11 L6 1.0 100 3 14.5

2012 National Open - more pics

I forgot to mention that Steven de Groot won $ 250 in the U2000 section of the National Open !
A win in the last round would have given him clear second, as the winner of the tournament settled for a draw in an overwhelmingly won position immediately after Steve resigned.

Here are some pics from Ken Einarsson from the Karpov simul:

"Anyone who as much as draws with the former World Champion will forever be immortalized in the annals of chess history."
Jim plays his move

Ken Einarsson ready to soften up the champ.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Tuesday, July 10 - 40th Anniversary Tribute to Fischer-Spassky 1972

July 11 is the 40th Anniversary of the first game of the Fischer-Spassky match 1972.

Tuesday, July 10 in room 4CM42 at the University of Winnipeg,
the Manitoba Chess Association will have an informal night of chess events.
Renew acquaintances old and new !
Reminisce about 1972 !
Shake off  the rust with a few blitz games !
Drop in any time on the evening of July 10
There is no admission fee.

There is one formal event, but don't feel compelled to participate - you may wish to just hang out.

7:00 pm.  Doors Open
Through-out the night (approx 7:00 - 10:30)
Informal games - pair off with another player - pick your time control and have some fun. 

 From 7:15 - 7:45 there will be a  review of  the end of Fischer-Spassky 1972  Game 1.

There will be a rapid tournament starting at 8 pm for those who which to participate.
Registration 7:45 - 8:00 pm

4 round Swiss System  - Time Control  Game / 15 minutes.
Normal tournament rules apply - touch move, etc.
Entry fee $ 10 -
Prizes are entries to the 2012 Abe Yanofsky Memorial.
(There will be one prize for every four entries received)

The Yanofsky connection is that Abe played Bobby twice, and Boris three times.

Yanofsky-Fischer Stockholm Interzonal 1962  0-1
Spassky-Yanofsky - Winnipeg 1967  1-0
Yanofsky-Spassky  Lugano Olympiad 1968 1/2-1/2 
Fischer-Yanofsky Netanya 1968 1/2-1/2 
Spassky- Yanofsky Seigen Olympiad 1970  1-0

Manitoba Active(Time Control) Ratings as at July 1, 2012

Name Active Rating
Billous, Simon 1386
Bince, Rolando 2124
Baron, Cody 1383
Boron, Anthony 2005
Burstow, John 2264
Campbell, Jamie 1646
Chapman, James 1641
Cheam 1238
Chernyakov, Denis 1111
Cleto, Sam 1825
Crawford, Gary 1466
Currie, James 1970
Czypinski, Jaroslaw 1927
Dawa, Arvin 2119
De Groot, Steven 1963
Delos Santos, Christopher 1983
Einarsson, Ken 1750
Evans, Brian 1599
Gannon, Keith 1596
Gibson, Kris 1814
Green, Aaron 1998
Green, Jim 1834
Greenberg, Harley 1784
Gudmundsson, Gunnar 1659
Huston-Earle, Joshua 1066
Iomdina, Alex 1460
Iomdina, Bella 1844
Iomdina, Gregory 1895
Iyer, Chandra 2209
Joven, Perfecto 1887
Kaptsan, Aron 1932
Klusa, Lawrence 1339
Klusa, Mark 1557
Kohalmi, Andy 1635
Lauritson, Jim 1878
Letain, Cory 1631
Li, Devon 1567
Li, Henry 1410
Li, Kevin 2130
Lipic, Stephen 1869
Lipnowski, Samuel 2252
Magnusson, Saul 1793
Manicdao, Tomas 1749
Mascarin, Shannon 1416
Melamedoff, Gustavo 2031
Melven, John 1548
Milord, Frank 1646
Milward, Dave 1710
Mousseau, Chuck 1846
Moncal, Nilo 2097
Nikouline, Alexandre 2075
Ochate, Edward 1521
Ott, Richard 1446
Pang, Charles 1800
Pang, Michael 1835
Pottinger, Carl 1841
Pressey, Tim 1570
Raihman, David 1498
Raihman, Igal 2015
Remillard, John 1548
Repa, Jason 2024
Rosner, Cecil 2010
Rutter, Blair 1916
Samson, Larry 1742
Schulz, Manfred 1842
Schulz, Waldemar 1946
Schwartz, Leah 1229
Spence, Austin 1333
Swift, Ryne 1816
Trueman, Francis 1517
Van Wyk, Joseph 2054
Villeneuve, Justin 1292
Vincent, Trevor 2318
Wasserman, Arie 1727
Wasserman, Jerry 1973
Wasserman, Leor 1799
Wolchock, Theo 1613
Yung, Dustin 1172
Zaczek, Jonathon 2213
Zayaanyk, Andrii 1590

Friday, July 6, 2012

Cecil's Saturday Puzzle - June 30, 2012

From the Winnipeg Free Press
White to Mate in 2 (Morse)
1. Qb8

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Nathan Divinsky 1925-2012

The posters at chesstalk started a long thread on Nathan Divinsky - here is the link, but it may scroll off at some point. Divinsky apparently left Winnipeg in 1966, so only a few old-timers may have met him. Update - another short thread has started.

Dan Scoones wrote a tribute in the BC Chess Federation Bulletin 242, which I will reproduce here:

NATHAN JOSEPH HARRY DIVINSKY (29 October 1925 - 17 June 2012)

It is with sadness that we note the passing of Dr. Nathan Divinsky, a larger-than-life figure with
many contributions to the Canadian chess scene; he was eighty-six.
Born in Winnipeg to Yiddish-speaking immigrant parents from Poland and Ukraine. Educated at St.
John's High School, Divinsky earned degrees from the University of Manitoba and University of
Chicago, graduating with a Ph.D. from the latter at age twenty-four in 1950. After a year at Ripon
College, Wisconsin he returned to the University of Manitoba as an Assistant Professor of
Mathematics. In 1959 he moved to Vancouver to take up a similiar post at the University of British
Columbia, retiring as Professor Emeritus in 1991. Divinsky was active in local politics in Vancouver,
serving as a member of the school board and as an alderman. During the years 1972-1983 he was
married to future Prime Minister Kim Campbell. Divinsky was part owner of the Granville Island
restaurant Bridges and wrote a guide to good food in the Vancouver area ("an intellectual
gastronomic piece of gossipy good fellowship"). Possessor of a resonant baritone voice, Divinsky
was also an amateur pianist of note and was particularly fond of the Gilbert and Sullivan operettas.
Apart from chess Divinsky’s other ‘hobby’ was bridge, at which he also excelled. He became a life
master in 1972 and was the Canadian Bridge League's contract bridge champion in 1987.

Divinsky's chess accomplishments were also wide ranging and mutli-faceted. He was taught the
game at age six by his father; after initial setbacks at school he improved his play by reading
Tarrasch's The Game of Chess. In 1940-42 he helped organize the St. John's High School Chess
Club and was its champion; subsequently Divinsky played on several University of Chicago teams
and founded a club at Ripon College. Provincially he came second in the Manitoba Championship
in 1945 and won the event in 1946 and 1952. In three appearances in the Canadian Championship
his best showings were joint third at Saskatoon 1945 (behind Yanofsky and Yerhoff) and clear fifth
at Vancouver 1951. Divinsky served as second reserve on two Canadian olympiad teams; at
Amsterdam 1954 he only played one game (a draw), but in Havana in 1966 he scored plus one in
eight games. His only other international event appears to be Bognor Regis 1966, the Churchill
Memorial tournament, where he finished tied for seventh in the seventy-four player field behind
Karaklaic and Matanovic, but ahead of Golombek and Wade. Divinsky's other over-the-board play
was restricted to local team matches and simultaneous displays, both giving and on the receiving
end (Reshevsky, Bisguier, Kasparov). He was active as a player as late as 2004, when he
participated with Doug Freeman in a fundraising pairs event for the 2005 Macskasy Memorial (see
Bulletin #42). Divinsky was also part of the UBC team which defeated a team from the University of
Moscow 1.5-0.5 in a correspondence match 1964-68.

In the realm of chess administration Divinsky served two terms as president of the CFC (1953,
1993) and was FIDE representative 1987-1992 and 2004-2007; he also represented Canada in
official capacities many times, most recently as captain of the women's team at the Calvia
Olympiad in 2004. Divinsky achieved considerable popularity as a media figure in 1986 when he
commented on the London leg of the Kasparov-Karpov world championship for BBC television.
Divinsky's other major area of involvement in chess was in writing. He began contributing game
annotations and other reports to Canadian Chess Chat in the 1950s, and subsequently served as
its editor from 1959 until the early 1970s. Divinsky wrote two relatively short-lived chess columns,
both called Chess Charivari, one for the Winnipeg Tribune 1953-1964 and the second almost
exactly ten years later for the Vancouver Province, 1963-64 (see Bulletin #173). Divinsky also
authored four books on chess: Around the Chess World in 80 Years in two volumes (1961 and
1965), Warriors of the Mind (with Raymond Keene, 1989), The Batsford Encyclopedia of Chess
(1990), and Life Maps of the Great Chess Masters (1994). During the last decade of his life
Divinsky's main research interest was the nineteenth-century German player, author, historian and
diplomat von der Lasa; it was said that a book was forthcoming in collaboration with Peter
Stockhausen, but presumably this project will now remain incomplete.

Interview with Nathan Divinsky

Also, the Globe & Mail had a long obit, which I will also reproduce here in case it disappears at some point.

Monday July 2, 2012

Math professor spent his life seeking truth

'The two roles that were most important to him were father and teacher,' said former prime minister Kim Campbell

Special to The Globe and Mail
Nathan Divinsky inhabited that plateau where high-level chess and mathematics intersect. So it should be little surprise that he could be arrogant, brash and over-the-top provocative. But those traits were also what made him so compelling.
Divinsky was a colourful character even by the standards of worlds that produce, almost as a prerequisite, colourful characters. A professor of mathematics at the University of British Columbia for 32 years, he was a master at both bridge and chess, twice captaining Canadian teams at the Chess Olympiad. From the 1950s onward, he played key roles in chess organization in this country, serving as Canada's representative to FIDE (the World Chess Federation), from 1987 to 1994, and as president of the Chess Federation of Canada. In 2001, he was inducted into the Canadian Chess Hall of Fame.
He did much to raise the game's profile through prolific commentaries in the media. He founded and edited the magazine Canadian Chess Chat for 15 years and authored several well-received books on the game (as well as on math and fine dining), including 1989's Warriors of the Mind, co-written with British grandmaster Raymond Keene.
Among British chess cognoscenti, he became a household name in 1986, when the world championship rematch between Garry Kasparov and Anatoly Karpov took place in MoscowLondon (and Leningrad). Divinsky attended as a chess tourist but was snapped up to become the star commentator on the BBC's nightly coverage of the match. He pronounced the British "uptight," and gleefully recalled how his joking manner made the show's director nearly tear his hair out.
"Divinsky made such an impact ... that "I Love Divinsky" badges swiftly proliferated among the thousands of fans thronging the venue," noted his obituary in The Times, written by Keene.
For a time, Divinsky was a school trustee and a municipal councillor in Vancouver, experiences which served to reinforce and mesh his blunt views on politicians and the politics of chess. "All the bright successful people who become doctors, lawyers and financiers, they're never going to go into politics," he observed dryly in 2004. "That's why our politicians, in my opinion, are mostly third-class charlatans, and the people who end up in chess organizations are relatively weak players who have no great satisfaction from other forms of life. They're essentially incompetent."
On his blog, Canadian chess grandmaster Kevin Spraggett was equally direct. "I can't say I ever liked Nathan, though his charms often compensated for his defects. Many of his actions and political standing inside the chess world did more harm to Canada's reputation and influence than they did good, but I will always respect Nathan's courage for speaking his own mind, regardless of consequences or of who was listening."
Divinsky was 86 when he died in Vancouver on June 17. Those with sharp memories may recall that he was once married to Kim Campbell, Canada's 19th prime minister. The couple had met when Campbell was an undergraduate 22 years his junior at the University of British Columbia in the late 1960s. They married in 1972 and divorced in 1983.
"He did many things in his life but I think the two roles that were most important to him were father and teacher," Campbell told The Globe and Mail. "I think he was an extraordinary father. If there was something I learned from him - because I also taught in my early career - it was his approach to the integrity of teaching. Teaching was a deadly serious business for him. Part of his role was to express to students the joy of using your mind - that it's serious business but can also be a source of enormous personal happiness.
"Both of those roles he approached with absolute devotion and dependability and integrity."
Divinsky's passion for chess seemed bottomless, though was he not consumed by it. For him, chess was a mystical combination of beauty and struggle. Quoting a German master, he said the game, "like love and like music, has the power to make men happy."
And what about a little crazy? He rejected the chestnut that the best players are so brilliant they cross the line into a kind of madness. In fact, "chess players are more normal than the average rung of society," he told an interviewer. "The stronger the player, the more serious and sensible."
But there was a living to be made and chess didn't offer one. "When we were young, it was drummed into our head that nobody made a living from chess, and in those days nobody did," Divinsky told British Columbia Chess Scene a few years ago. World champions had died penniless and even second-tier grandmasters barely scraped by. "And I wasn't even in that category. So I was taught and accepted the idea that I had to do something for a living, apart from chess."
Nathan Joseph Harry (Tuzie) Divinsky was born in 1925 in the North End of Winnipeg to Yiddish-speaking Russian-Jewish émigrés. His father, David, a grocer, had left revolutionary Russia in 1919 and married Rose Polonsky. Nathan, their only child, was three or four when he watched his father and uncle play chess. "I could create, instantly," he would recall. "I didn't have to learn a lot of details and facts and formulas. I could start moving pieces and geometric beauties began to multiply on the board. I loved beating people, especially older people, and when you're five, most people are older."
He befriended future Canadian grandmaster Daniel Yanofsky and sharpened his skills at the Winnipeg Jewish Chess Club. Divinsky tied for third and fourth places in the Canadian Closed Chess Championship in 1945, and won the Manitoba Championship in 1946 and 1952.
He earned a bachelor of science degree from the University of Manitoba in 1946, followed by a master's degree a year later. His doctorate was from the University of Chicago and his math specialty was linear algebra. He was a regular on the Discovery Channel's segments on chess and mathematics, and was the subject of a 30-minute program, The Divine Divinsky.
Divinsky was the rare person to excel at both chess and bridge. He was designated a bridge life master in 1972. In chess, he was not officially rated by FIDE but was considered master level in Canada and received the honorary title of international master from the Commonwealth Chess Association.
Keene described his style of play as "open and classical and based on virtue. The punishing of his opponent's errors reflected his entire lifestyle. He was the epitome of ethics in all walks of life."
Divinsky came to know and analyze games with some of the greatest names in modern chess: Mikhail Tal, Tigran Petrosian, Kasparov, Boris Spassky, who became a good friend, and Bobby Fischer, whom Divinsky had met at the Olympiad in Havana in 1966. "He recognized Fischer's brilliance," his daughter Pamela said, "but considered him badly behaved." Her father was "heartbroken" when IBM's Deep Blue supercomputer defeated Kasparov in 1997, the first time a machine had beaten a human. "I think he felt it destroyed the beauty of the game."
Often, he would indulge his passion of comparing the greatest players, the way fight fans mentally pit boxers from one generation against another. Was Alexander Alekhine stronger than Jose Capablanca? Could Paul Morphy have beaten Wilhelm Steinitz? Can you imagine Kasparov versus Fischer in their primes?
After retiring from competitive play in 1966, he dove into chess administration. He served on the Vancouver School Board from 1974 to 1980 and was its chair for two years. "In education," he said of his time on the board, "democracy is irrelevant." In the early 1980s, he spent less than two years on Vancouver's city council, where he was "ornery and difficult and controversial," his daughter said.
But he was instrumental, she added, in redeveloping Granville Island and in the first wave of condo construction in Vancouver. He had a personal stake on the island after becoming part owner of Bridges, a successful restaurant there, and he went on to edit The Good Food Guide to Vancouver.
Ever the mathematician, Divinsky noted that his first wife, Bebi, was born on March 12 and that Campbell on March 10, and half-joked that he was looking for a woman who was born on March 11 to complete the sequence. On discovering that Marilyn Goldstone, his daughter's friend's mother, was born March 11, he called her for a date and the pair lived together for 27 years until Divinsky's death.
An accomplished pianist who hosted annual Gilbert and Sullivan operettas performed with friends and family, Divinsky was also devoted to theatre, opera, movies, ballet, crossword puzzles, mysteries and Victorian literature. He had a walk-on part in the 1992 chess thriller film Knight Moves.
Mixed with the achievements and bluster were occasional bursts of humility: What he did in mathematics was insignificant, he would tell his family. Bridge and chess were just games. His business successes were mere luck.
Eulogized Pamela: "Dad wrote in his diary, 'All my time was [spent] seeking truth - no compromises.' He knew only authenticity. That was his charm."
Divinsky leaves his third wife, Marilyn Goldstone, daughters Judy Kornfeld and Pamela Divinsky, and two grandchildren. He was pre-deceased by his daughter Mimi in 2007.

And more, from the Ken Whyld Society:

Sunday, July 1, 2012

FIDE Ratings have been updated

We didn't hold any FIDE events locally in the last period, but some out-of-town results are included.

My rating went down 9 to 1950 from the National Open - Las Vegas.
Jonathon Zaczek lost a total of 21 points in two events in Poland to sit at 2096.
Rolando Bince played 4 FIDE games in Las Vegas, and now only needs 2 more for a FIDE rating.