Saturday, December 27, 2014

Pestaño: Busy schedule for Cebu chess

Monday, December 29, 2014

JIMMY TY JR. proved his big win last year was no fluke as he crushed NM Arnold Cadiz (2-0) in their showdown for the championship to retain the title as Cepca Grand Champion for 2014. He received a cash prize of P3,000 and a beautifully crafted trophy for his feat. Ty is a civil engineer now based in Tacloban City, his hometown.
Cadiz settled for the second place, while Rosendo Yamyamin defeated Rey Flores in their own battle for third place.
The score after five rounds among the 12 finalists were Jimmy Ty Jr. (4.0), Arnold Cadiz (4.0), Rosendo Yamyamin (3.5), Rey Flores (3.5), Ben Dimaano (3.0), Tony Cabibil (3.0), Carlo Maraat (2.5), Jun Kidlat (2.0), Maggi Dionson (2.0), Amado Olea (2.0), Peterson Sia (2.0) and Jerry Maratas (1.0).
In the double knockout semifinals, Ty won over Yamyamin and Cadiz defeated Rey Flores.
In the non-qualifiers side event, the winner was Jojo Muralla (4.5). He was followed by Jessa Balbona ,Mario Bustillo and Andrew Balbona, who all had 4.0 points.
Former Cebu City Mayor Alvin Garcia inducted nine new Cepca members of the club. Among our newest members are three brainy and lovely ladies -Therese dela Torre, Engr.
Harveyjane Aliman Hilvano and Jessa Balbona. The others are Dominic Inso Morre, Norman Martin B. Olayvar, Mario Bustillo, Edwin Cablao, Regelito Hortelano and Denster Abella.
The Deep Blue Christmas tournament was held last Dec. 18-19 in SM. The format for this event was seven rounds Swiss, with the top 16 playing a double knockout elimination.
The semifinalists were Richard Natividad, Ronald Ganzon, Joel Pacuribot and Arnold Cadiz. Natividad won the title and the P8,000 top prize, while Ronald Ganzon finished second. Pacuribot and Cadiz got the third and fourth spots, respectively.
The Mayor Junie Martinez Open tournament was held last Dec. 22-23 at the Bogo City Public Plaza. The winners were Carlos Moreno, Ronald Ganzon and Romel Ganzon. Moreno got P5,000 and Ganzon earned P3,000.
The Cebu Chess Masters also held the Christmas Blitz/Active Chess tournament at Robinson Cybergate last weekend.
Joel Pacuribut got P4,000 and a trophy after winning the active format, while Rogelio Enriquez and Vicmil Pepito got the second and third places, respectively. Vic Glyssen Derotas was the top secondary player, while Alphard Gonzales was the top elementary player.
In the Blitz category, the winners were Alfer Fernandez, former Sun.Star Cebu sports editor Jobanie Tabada and Arnonito Cadiz.
The 2nd Mayor Democrito M. Diamante and Vice Mayor Danny M. Diamante Chess Team Tournament (Cebu Inter-Cities and Municipalities) was held at Tuburan last weekend with 12 teams.
It was open to all cities (except Cebu City) and municipalities of Cebu. Each team was composed of four regular players and each player was required to bring his voter’s ID or certification from the Comelec Registrar of their respective town or city. Cepca played as guest, being one of the sponsors.
Toledo won the title and P25,000, while Minglanilla got second place and P15,000. The rest of the top six teams and their prizes are Tuburan A (P10,000), Mandaue (P7,000), Cepca B (P5,000) and Cepca C (P3,000). The other participants were Bogo, Argao, Cepca A, Tuburan B and C and Moalboal..
Toledo City was bannered by Rolzon Roullo, Glen Pardillo, Bonn Tibod and Cris Tubalado, while Cebuano legend IM Rico Mascarinas played for Tuburan A. The Cepca B players were Cocoy Lepiten, Jun Kidlat, Ruel and Regelito Hortelano, while the Cepca A players were Kimkim Yap, Jimmy Ty.
Percival Fiel and Jun Olis. Cepca C players were the Balbona family.
Mayor Diamante awarded the prizes and gave two lechons after the tournament. Thank you sir for the warm hospitality as was an enjoyable tournament!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Pestaño: The Peter Principle: Why players fail to improve

Thursday, December 18, 2014

THE principle is named after Laurence J. Peter, who co-authored with Raymond Hull the 1969 book “The Peter Principle: Why Things Always Go Wrong.” The book was a favorite topic of discussion among my colleagues in the oil company that I worked back then.
It is a concept in management theory in which the promotion of a candidate for a position is based on the candidate’s performance in his or her current role rather than on abilities relevant to the intended role. Thus “in a hierarchy, employees and managers tend to rise to the level of their incompetence.” The employee has no chance of further promotion, thus reaching his or her career’s ceiling in an organization.
It is the same in chess. There are countless chess players who are trapped as National Masters all their lives and cannot attain the next level, which is Fide Master. In the same vein, FMs, IMs and even GMs are victims of the Peter Principle.
I am an example of the principle. In the 60s and the 70s, I had a high rating of 2080 and could not improve any further. Due to age, lack of interest and motivation, I am probably playing now at the 1800s level.
Even after studying chess books or courses, many chess players have gone years without making any significant improvement.
Playing chess, practice is very important for improvement. However, you can repeat the same mistakes over and over again. You will tend to follow your own old patterns and not have time to develop a different and correct process. In my case, I play more than 20 games everyday online, but my preference is bullet chess of 1 to 5 minutes time control as I get bored and just play for enjoyment and fun. You can`t improve if you play like this.
There is no shortcut. To improve is to have complete knowledge of chess strategy. Then, you will know what to do in any situation. It makes no sense playing new moves when there are full blueprints available.
An incomplete study of theory leaves you with weaknesses and a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. Too much theory without enough exercises or too many exercises without essential theory is also counterproductive.
Too much of anything may also hold back your creativity and diminish your joy for the game. Save yourself time and study and train only with the best materials.
Cool facts. Here are some interesting chess facts which I did not include in my last week’s article due to space limitation.
The average rating of Iceland’s and Brazil’s top 10 players is equal -- 2513 for both countries. Iceland has 324,000 people, while Brazil has 203,000,000 -- more than 600 times that of Iceland.
In the chess world, Iceland is best known for hosting the 1972 world chess championship match between Bobby Fischer and Boris Spassky. Brazil has been a star on the international sports stage lately, hosting the just-completed 2014 Fifa World Cup, along with the upcoming 2016 summer Olympics.
Webster University’s chess team is stronger than most national federations. The average Fide rating of Webster’s top four boards (Wesley So, Le Quang Liem, Georg Meier and Ray Robson) is currently 2679.
As of the last Olympiad, that would make them the 10th strongest federation in the world, just ahead of teams like England. The population of England is 53 million. The total enrollment at Webster University is 22,000.
PARTY. This is a reminder to all Cepca members that our Christmas party, induction of new members, grand finals and non-qualifiers tournament will be this Sunday at Lola Saling Grill and restaurant in Casuntingan, Mandaue.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Pestaño: What is chess?

Thursday, December 4, 2014

CHESS is the world’s most popular game, played by millions worldwide in homes, parks, clubs, online, by correspondence, and in tournaments. There are more players and games played than all the other sports combined.
It is not just a game but a lot of things. Here are its different definitions.
Chess is everything—art, science, and sport.—Anatoly Karpov.
Chess is a sea in which a gnat may drink and an elephant may bathe.—Indian proverb.
Chess is a fairy tale of 1,001 blunders. —Savielly Tartakower.
Chess is a beautiful mistress—Larsen.
Chess is war over the board. The object is to crush the opponents mind.—Bobby Fischer.
Chess is mental torture.—Kasparov.
Chess is not a game but a disease.—Henry Bannerman.
Chess is one of the sins of pride.—John Bromyard.
Chess is like body-building. If you train every day, you stay in top shape. It is the same with your brain. Chess is a matter of daily training. —Kramnik.
A chess game is divided into three stages: the first, when you hope you have the advantage, the second when you believe you have an advantage, and the third... when you know you’re going to lose!—Tartakower.
The passion for playing chess is one of the most unaccountable in the world. It slaps the theory of natural selection in the face. It is the most absorbing of occupations.
The least satisfying of desires. A nameless excrescence upon life. It annihilates a man. You have, let us say, a promising politician, a rising artist that you wish to destroy. Dagger or bomb are archaic and unreliable—but teach him, inoculate him with chess. It is a curse upon man.—H.G. Wells.
I have always had a slight feeling of pity for a man who has no knowledge of chess.
Many have become chess masters—no one has become the master of chess.—Siegbert Tarrasch .
Chess, like love, like music, has the power to make man happy.—Savielly Tartakower.
Chess holds its master in its own bonds, shackling the mind and brain so that the inner freedom of the very strongest must suffer.—Albert Einstein.
Chess is a miniature version of life. To be successful, you need to be disciplined, assess resources, consider responsible choices and adjust when circumstances change.—Susan Polgar.
Chess is beautiful enough to waste your life for.—Hans Ree.
Chess is the game which reflects most honor on human wit.—Voltaire.
Life is a kind of chess, with struggle, competition, good and ill events. The game of chess is not merely an idle amusement; several very valuable qualities of the mind are to be acquired and strengthened by it, so as to become habits ready on all occasions.—Benjamin Franklin.
Chess is the gymnasium of the mind.—Blaise Pascal.
Chess is at the same time a game, a sport, a science and an art. And perhaps even more than that, This is something hard to explain to those who do not know the game well.
One must first learn to play it correctly in order to savor its richness.—Bent Larsen.
Chess is a bond of brotherhood amongst all lovers of the game. It is a leveler of rank, title, wealth, nationality, politics, religion —all are forgotten across the board.—Frederick Milne Edge.
Chess is a foolish expedient for making idle people believe they are doing something very clever when they are only wasting their time.—George Bernard Shaw.
Chess is a great game. No matter how good one is, there is always somebody better. No matter how bad one is, there is always somebody worse.— I.A. Horowitz.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Pestaño: Magic 12 is now complete

Thursday, November 27, 2014

AMADO Olea Jr. and Maggi Dionson won the last two places in the November edition to complete the cast of Cepca’s “Magic 12” for the 2014 Grand Finals.
Staff Sgt. Olea is with the Philippine Air Force assigned to the 453rd AAMS 205 Tactical Helicopter Wing in Mactan. Dionson is a Geodetic Engineer and a licensed real estate broker, appraiser and lecturer.
The early finalists are Jimmy Ty Jr. (civil engineer), Carlo Maraat (a CPA with the Department of Budget and Management), Tony Cabibil, (accountant) and Rey Flores (retired boat captain and chess instructor).
The other qualifiers are Arnold Cadiz, a three-term independent councilor of Barangay Camputhaw and chess instructor of USC–BED and a National Master; Peterson Sia, a BSBA graduate and chess instructor; and Harrison Chua, a long time OFW.
The last three are club president Jerry Maratas, a civil engineer and entrepreneur; Ross Yamyamin, a commerce graduate and manager of a finance company; and Eduard dela Torre , formerly team manager of Accenture and is now concentrating now on his chess ventures.
The Grand Finals, simultaneous with the Non-Qualifiers Tournament, is tentatively set on Dec. 14 or 21 , in time with the holding of the club’s annual Christmas party and Induction of new members.
We had three new members this month--Jessa Balbona, Denster Abella and Edwin Cablao.
Jessa Balbona is our third lady member after Marilou Pagarigan, formerly chess coach of Cebu International School but now works in South Korea and Therese dela Torre, who was considered the strongest lady player while she was still in college.
Jessa just graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Accountancy, cum laude from USJ-R.
It would take a full column to recount Jessa’s chess achievements as she has been playing at the top level since her elementary days.
She was a Board I player of USJ-R from high school to college, the first female Junior champion in Shell Visayas and former PH chess team member.
Denster Kevin is a nephew of the late NM Roger Abella and is a nurse. He just arrived from Scotland with his family last August and wants to return to chess so his son, Dwayne Vin, will be exposed to the game. Gwayne was the champion in Scotland in the Under 7 division and also won some events in the UK.
Edwin Cablao is the principal of Alaska Night High School. He was a chess coach and trainer who produced outstanding players like Merben Roque and Vincent Lepalam and has been managing the Cebu City Chess Olympics for the last two years. His daughter is Quennie Marie, a Class A player.
Robinson’s Chess Festival. The Cebu Chess Masters will be conducting a tournament at Robinson’s Fuente starting tomorrow and Sunday.
There will be three categories--elementary, high school and open. For the elementary and high school divisions, there will be two five-round eliminations at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. on Saturday. The top 10 players of each elimination will advanced to the finals on Sunday at noon.
The top three winners of the high school and elementary divisions will get P3,000, P2,000 and P1,000, respectively. There will also be consolation prizes for the fourth to 20th placers. Registration fee is P150 per elimination round.
The open category will be on Sunday at 1 p.m. There will also be two elimination rounds. The top three will get P1,000, P800 and P600, respectively. There will also be consolation prizes for the fourth to 20th placers The registration fee is P60 per elimination round,
The sponsors of the tournament are Robinson’s Fuente, Handuraw Pizza, Cepca, Jemar Engineering Services and Jojo Muralla.
For more information, you may contact Eduard dela Torre-President of Cebu Chess Masters at 4010905 and 09328622010.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Pestaño: A most enjoyable tournament

Thursday, November 20, 2014

IT WAS one of my most enjoyable tournaments ever. Everyone had a lot of fun and the ladies were treated like girl friends. All of them received chocolates and roses of the best kind.
IT WAS one of my most enjoyable tournaments ever. Everyone had a lot of fun and the ladies were treated like girl friends. All of them received chocolates and roses of the best kind.
As I expected, it was very close. Cepca members won by the slimmest of margin, 19.5-18.5. It could have gone the other way as I will explain later. Here are the board by board results. The format was two games of black and white pieces and time control was 30 minutes per player, play to finish.
Here are the results:
1.) Ben Dimaano—Lalia Nadera (USC), 1-1, 2.) John Velarde—Glysen Derotas (USC), 0-2 ,
3.) Boy Pestaño—Shaina Guyneth Caparino (UC), 1.5-0.5, 4.) Therese dela Torre—Quennie Marie Cablao (USJ-R) 0-2, 5.) Elmer Cablao vs. Roxanne Tampus (USJ-R), 1.5- 0.5, 6.) Jojo Muralla vs. Jazzelle Villarin (USJ-R), 0-2, 7.) Carlo Maraat vs. KC Morala (USC), 2-0, 8.) Jennoh Tequillo vs. Jessa Balbona (USJ-R), 0.5-1.5, 9.) Tony Barade vs. Charah Cababan (USC), 1-1, 10.) Alex Tolentino vs. Rowena Padro (USC), 0-1 (one game only), 11.) Andrew Aznar vs. Shaira Monsalud (USC), 0-1 (one game only), 12. Ruel Hortelano vs. Aireen Robillos (USJ-R), 0-2 , 13. Jun Kidlat vs. Stephanie Sabanal (CNU), 2-0 , 14.) Eduard dela Torre vs. Sarajane Dabalos (UV), 2-0 , 15.)
Felix Balbona vs. Ma. Ziella Arioja (CNU), 2-0 , 16.) Jun Olis vs. Marivelle Lumayag (UC) 1-1, 17.) Mike Banibane vs. Kylene Mae Eumague (UC) 1.5-0.5, 18.) Nic-nic Climaco vs. Queenelyn Torres (UC), 1-1, 19. ) Marvyne Guardiana vs. Diana Ross Pabatang (USJ-R), 1-1, 20.) Jerry Maratas vs. Cecillie Lumapac (USJ-R) 2-0.
You will notice that Andrew Aznar and Alex Tolentino played only one game as they had
commitments elsewhere. Shaira, Andrew’s opponent, is probably the No.1 ladies player now, while Rowena is just as good. The two ladies probably would have won the second games.
So the results would have favored the ladies, 20.5-19.5.
Meanwhile, Carlo Maraat  prevented a near sweep by the lady players by snatching the crown in the 10-minute blitz tournament that followed after the event. Other winners were Aireen Robillos (second), KC Morala (third), Shaira Monsalud (fourth) and Glysen Derotas (fifth).
There was an excess of food despite the presence of numerous guests in the dinner that followed. This early, I am thinking of a possible rematch.
Our next agenda is a match between Cepca against the male varsity players selection.
In our match against the ladies, the nine Class A players were not allowed to play to make the match competitive. Also a good team’s matchup will be against the Lapu-Lapu selection, which was an annual event a few years ago.
November. Our monthly tournament will be this Sunday again at Handuraw Gorordo starting 2 p.m. The sponsors for the prizes are Ely Berciles and couple Eduard and Therese dela Torre. All the previous monthly winners, with the exception of our president Engr.Jerry Maratas, will not be allowed to participate unlike in the previous months.
The early qualifiers are Jimmy Ty, NM Arnold Cadiz, Carlo Maraat, Rey Flores, Harrison Chua, Eduard dela Torre, Peterson Sia, Rosendo Yamyamin, Tony Cabibil and Jerry Maratas.
The November tournament will offer two slots to the grand finals next month. Like in the previous years, this will coincide with our Christmas party.
Also, there will be a tournament for the non-qualifiers.
Carlsen-Anand. Eight games have been played so far and this match is anything but timid. Carlsen is leading, 4.5-3.5, and all the games were hotly contested. Carlsen won the second game, Anand tied the match by winning the third game. Carlsen won the sixth game, while the rest were draws.
The big news of this match is that Fide, at this late stage, has not received the prize fund of $1.5 million from the organizers!

Friday, November 14, 2014

Pestano: What most people didn’t know about chess

Thursday, December 11, 2014

IT HAS been estimated that the number of unique chess games is 10^120. This is 50 percent greater than the estimated number of electrons in the known universe!
The word "Checkmate" in Chess comes from the Persian phrase "Shah Mat," which means "the King is dead."
Barbara Streisand and Bobby Fischer were classmates in high school. Streisand later confided that she had a crush on Bobby saying that he "was always alone and very peculiar. But I found him very sexy."
A Cleveland, Ohio police squadron embarrassingly raided a chess tournament in 1973 under charges of gambling. They arrested the tournament director for facilitating an illegal gambling operation. The cash prizes were confiscated, as well as the “gambling devices” (read: chess boards and clocks).
As late as 1561, Castling was two moves. You had to play R-KB1 on one move and K-KN1 on the next move.
The new pawn move—advancing two squares on its first move instead of one— was first introduced in Spain in 1280.
During the 1972 Fischer-Spassky match in Rekjavik, the Russians linked Spassky's erratic play with Fischer's chair. The Icelandic organization put a 24-hour Police guard around the chair, while chemical and x-ray tests were performed on the chair.
Nothing unusual was found.
The first mechanical chess clock was invented by Thomas Wilson in 1883. Prior to that, sandglasses were first used in London in 1862. The present day push-button clock was first perfected by Veenhoff in 1900.
The folding chess board was originally invented in 1125 by a chess-playing priest.
Since the Church forbids priests to play chess, he hid his chess board by making one that looked simply like two books lying together.
The Rooks in chess were named after the rookies or players in their first year.Rooks generally are the last pieces to be moved into action, and the same goes for rookies.
The second book ever printed in the English language was about chess. The first was the Bible.
The oldest surviving complete chess sets were found on the Isle of Lewis, in northern Scotland, and dates to the 12th century.
The first Chess game between space and earth was played on June 9, 1970 by the Soyez-9
The number of possible ways of playing the first four moves per side in a game of Chess is 318,979,564,000.
At the Linköping 1969 tournament, Friedrich Sämisch lost all 13 games by exceeding the time control.
Between Oct. 23, 1973, up to October 16, 1974, Mikhail Tal had a string of 95 tournament games in top-level chess without a loss (46 wins and 49 draws).
The worst result in a simultaneous exhibition given by a master happened in 1951, when International Master Robert Wade gave a simultaneous exhibitions against 30 Russian schoolboys, aged 14 and under. After 7 hours of play, Wade lost 20 games and drew the remaining 10.
Blindfold chess is an impressive skill which can get difficult after many moves. The record was set in 1960 in Budapest by Hungarian Janos Flesch, who played 52 opponents simultaneously while blindfolded – he won 31 of those games.
NEW MEMBER. We (Cepca) have a new member and the 4th lady member of the club. Harvey Jane Hilvano, 22, is a licensed Civil Engineer and works at Jemar Engineering as a Structural Engineer. She was also a former chess varsity player of USC,
Cepca will have its Christmas party on Dec. 21, Sunday, at 2 p.m. at the Lola Saling Grill and Restaurant, in Casungtingan, Mandaue City. To be held also is the induction of new members as well as the much awaited Grand Finals . There will also be a side tournament among non-qualifiers. Come and Enjoy!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Pestaño: Cepca faces the best women’s collegiate players

Frank "Boy" Pestaño
 Thursday, November 13, 2014

THE Cebu Executives and Professionals Chess Association (Cepca) will have its much anticipated goodwill match against some lady varsity players of Cebu this Sunday at Handuraw Gororodo at 2 p.m.
THE Cebu Executives and Professionals Chess Association (Cepca) will have its much anticipated goodwill match against some lady varsity players of Cebu this Sunday at Handuraw Gororodo at 2 p.m.
It will be a 19-board match with players playing two games against the same opponent handling black and white. Time control is 30 minutes for each player, play to finish.
The lineup for Cepca are Former Cebu City Mayor Alvin Garcia, Boojie Lim, Andrew Aznar, Ben Dimaano, club president Jerryboy Maratas, Marvyne Guardiana, Jojo Muralla, Ruel Hortelano, Alex Tolentino, Jennoh Tequillo, Jun Olis, Nic-nic Climaco, Eduard dela Torre, Therese dela Torre, Jun Kidlat, Tony Barade, Felix Balbona, John Velarde, Boy Pestaño.
The Cebu Lady Varsity Selection coaches have chosen the following players for their team--Jessa Balbona, Aireen Robillos, Shaira Monsalud, Queenelyn Torres, Kylene Eumague, Marvie Abucay, Venice Lumapac, Queenie Cablao, Diana Ross Pabatang, Jazeele Villarin, Stephanie Sabanal, Sarah Jane Dabalos, KC Morala, Jane Mae Conag, Laila Nadera, Ziella Aroja, Charah Cababan, Rowena Padro, Glysen Derotas.
To make the match competitive, the Class A players of Cepca will not be playing. However, the club will also tangle with the male varsity players selection in a future date and these Class A players will be fielded .
The lady players will receive roses and chocolates from their opponents for this match.
After the match, there will be a five-round Swiss tournament featuring all the players with cash prizes to the top four players. Time control is 10 minutes per player.
Dinner will then be served with lechon.
Sponsors of this unique event are honorary member Boojie Lim of Rose Phamacy, Jerry Maratas, Marvynne Guadiana, Ben Dimaano, honorary member Andrew Aznar of SWU, Jojo Muralla, Jun Kidlat and lawyer Jennoh Tequillo.
I am especially pleased with this event as my Cepca co-founder and former president lawyer Alex Tolentino will be playing.
Here is a brief summary of Cepca. It was founded in 1990 and is one of the oldest chess club in the Philippines and the oldest in Cebu. Founders were myself , Alex Tolentino and the late Art Ynclino. The other original members are Bombi Aznar, Danny Pestaño, Gerry Tomakin, Sonny Sollano, Loy Miñoza all of whom have passed away and the Benjamin of the group Nicnic Climaco.
It is registered with the Securities and Exchange Comission and has more than a 100 members. The other honorary members are Kelly Uy, Doctor Darcy Tabotabo (US-based) and Mayor Mike Rama.
Mayor Mike would have played but he has to go to Manila for some commitments. If you go to his office, he has a unique chess set displayed which is quite rare, a collector`s item.
Wesley So. Wesley’s transfer to the USCF is now official. With this transfer, the USCF is now ranked No. 4 from No. 9 in Fide’s top countries list and the Philippines dropped to No. 43 from No. 32.
This will make the Americans very competitive in the Olympiad. In the next few years, three Americans will get chances to be challengers in the world championship. Fabiano Caruana, the No. 2 player in the world, has dual Italian and American citizenship.
Hikaru Nakamura and Wesley So are both in the top 10.
The Philippines, once ranked as a major chess power (we placed eighth in the Greece Olympiad in 1988), is in a serious decline. The average age of our GMs is bordering 40 and the players have no signs of improving.
There has to be a revamp in the current leadership and Chess in Schools shouled implemented like what is being done in more than 30 countries worldwide.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Pestaño: Legendary chess journalists

Thursday, November 6, 2014

AFTER having been involved with the game for more than half a century, I came across several names of chess journalists long before the advent of the internet. They are the legends of chess journalism.
George Koltanowski, who wrote more than 19,000 chess columns for The San Francisco Chronicle, died at the age of 96 in 2000. His column ran for almost 52 years daily without interruption and was once the longest-running daily chess column in history for a long time.
“Chess is an international language,” he once said. “Everyone in the world can understand and enjoy it.”
Leonard William Barden (born 1929 London) is an English chess master, columnist and author. He began writing for the London Evening Standard in 1956 and is now the world’s longest running daily chess column, breaking the previous record set by George Koltanowski. Also, he has weekly columns in The Guardian for 54 years and in The Financial Times for 35 years.
Barden says “I have never missed a week in 54 years, and as a result the Guardian holds the world record for the longest continuous chess column of (currently) 54 years 3 months.” He is also the author of more than two dozen books.
In recognition of his efforts, Barden was offered an OBE, but declined it. Brian Walden has written that “Barden has done more for British chess than anybody since our famous 19th century champion, Howard Staunton.”
Gregory Koshnitsky had a 59-year weekly column for the Sydney Sun from 1935 to 1994 (although in this case, there was a 10 year break at one point). He was the 1933 and 1939 Australian champion.
English columnist Tom Widdows wrote weekly in the Worcester News from October 1945 to April 2006 or 60 years and 6 months. Allowing for breaks he wrote for 53 years.
Former Irish champion Jim Walsh wrote weekly in the Irish Times from April 1955 up to September 1972, where it became daily without a break up to now.
Hermann Helms was an American chess player, writer, and promoter. He served as the chess reporter for The New York Times for over 50 years until 1962.
Helms founded the American Chess Bulletin in 1904, and would publish and edit this journal until his death in 1963. Helms wrote chess columns for the Brooklyn Daily Eagle from 1893 until the paper folded in 1955. Helms also wrote chess columns for the New York World for 15 years, for the New York Post for 10 years, and for the New York World and Telegram for 10 years.
Helms was formally recognized in 1943 by the United States Chess Federation as the “Dean of American Chess,” and was called “the most important journalist in American chess history” by Arnold Denker and Larry Parr, Haije Kramer (died 2004) is a Dutch chess master and theoretician who wrote a weekly chess column in de Leeuwarder Courant, a daily newspaper in Friesland. He started writing in 1938 until 1998 or about 60 years (with a break during the war). From 1947 until 1969 ( 22 years) he also wrote a weekly column for the Algemeen Dagblad, a national newspaper.
Gert Ligterink has written for 26 years in de Volkskrant and Lex Jongsma for 36 years for de Telegraaf, both Dutch national newspapers.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Pestaño: Less prize money for world championship

Friday, October 31, 2014

THE World Chess Championship 2014 will be a rematch between world champion Magnus Carlsen of Norway and challenger Vishy Anand of India and will be held from Nov. 7 to 28 in Sochi, Russia.
The match will consist of 12 games and if necessary, tie-break games. The time control for the “classical” portion of the match will be 120 minutes for the first 40 moves, 60 minutes for the next 20 moves and then 15 minutes for the rest of the game. They will also have an increment of 30 seconds per move after move 61.
Both Carlsen and Anand played in the 2013 Championship with Anand as the reigning world champion and Carlsen as the challenger. Carlsen easily won, 6.5-2.5 This will mark the first time that the same opponents will meet in consecutive World
Championship matches since Garry Kasparov and Anatoly Karpov.
Anand won the 2014 Candidates Tournament, an eight-player double round robin
tournament that took place in Khanty-Mansiyk, Russia from March 13 to 31 early this year for the right to challenge Carlsen.
Statistics show that Anand and Carlsen faced off 79 times across all time formats. Importantly, in the 38 times that the two met in classical format, Anand has won six, Carlsen 7 and the rest were draws.
The prize for this year is “only” $1.5 million compared to $2.5 million when the match was held last year in Chennai. Carlsen is reportedly not happy and almost forfeited.
Beginning 2010, the Women’s World Chess Championship will be held annually in alternating formats. In even years a 64-player knockout system will be used and in odd years a classical match featuring two players will be held.
The 64 players are selected through national chess championships, Zonal tournaments and continental chess championships. The 64 will be from Europe (28), Asia (12), Americas (8) and Africa (3). The rest of the field will be the semifinalists of the women’s world chess championship in 2012, the 2012 and 2013 world girls champions, Fide nominees and the rest by ratings.
With the Women Grand Prix over, the 2015 match-up is already known and that will be between Hou Yifan of China and Koneru Humpy of India.
LOCAL. Cepca’s old vanguards came out from their respective hideouts to try out their luck in the cash-rich October Edition of the club’s monthly Qualifying Tournament.
Seen were Victor Sepulveda and Sergio Borres of MCIAA, Pastor Henry Cariat, Manny Manzanares, Joe Atillo and Jun Pasion.
The club would like to extend its appreciation to the benevolent sponsors--our US-based members Jojo Clamor Dondon, Mitch Vergara, Gilbert Ababat and locals Handuraw, Ross Yamyamin and Serge Borres.
Shaira Mae Monsalud of the University of San Carlos placed fourth with 4 points in five grueling rounds without a single loss. She also bagged first place in the Ladies Category together with Aireen Robillos (USJR) and KC Morala also from USC.
Rey Flores and Ross Yamyamin tied for first, while Eduard dela Torre is the qualifier for October.
Cepca also had new members and these are Elmer Odango, a former OFW singer for 20 years and composer, Louie Alalim of the PNP Regional 7, and Ryan Cortes an IT specialist and former varsity player of Cebu Institute of Technology.
The Women Championship 2014 is even worse. It was originally scheduled from Oct. 11-31 this month. Problems in finding a sponsor and host city eventually forced FIDE to announce the postponement of the Championship.
With the tournament postponed a “few months” it may actually be played in 2015. During the Fide Elections in the last Olympiad both Kasparov and Ilyumzhinov promised to attend to this problem.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Pestaño: Rulers who played chess

Friday, October 24, 2014

I WROTE about homosexuals before and although they constitute a significant percentage of the population, very few play chess.
Their lack of interest is a good topic for further research. There are exemptions, though.
The Chevalier d’Eon was history’s most famous transvestite. Among other things, he was a diplomat, spy, soldier and even served as Lady-in-Waiting to Marie Antoinette and became a nun!
He spent half his life dressed as a woman and the rest of the time as her—or rather his—own brother!
Later in life, he became a noted member of the St. George chess club and was good enough to beat Philidor in a simul. Wagers were placed about his gender and questions about his sexuality was only settled when a post-mortem showed he was male.
Charles Sherwood Stratton is known as General Tom Thumb and is the most famous midget
in history. According to his contemporaries, he was “an excellent chess player for his size” as his opponents couldn’t distinguish between him and the pieces.
Casanova was a known womanizer. In his memoirs, he wrote that he played chess with a girl named Pauline as part of his seduction technique. He lost all the time as his mind was almost certainly on other things.
Akbar the Great was India’s greatest emperor. During his rule, the Mughal Empire tripled in size and wealth. He played chess on a giant board (it still exist on Fatehpur Sikri) with elephants as pieces and horses as pawns.
Another Indian ruler was Shah Jehan, who is famous for building the Taj Mahal. He entertained his important friends who play chess with 32 living pieces who were virgins. The winner took the 32 virgins as prize. Wow!
Another ruler with a strange appetite was King Muley Hassan of Morocco. He sometimes
played with living pieces using prisoners from the Royal dungeons. What made this interesting was that captured pieces were beheaded on the spot! Legend has it his favorite opening was the Danish Gambit.
The war-like ruler King Conchubair of Ireland divided his waking hours into three—one-third for drinking, one-third for fighting and one-third for playing chess.
Aron Schvartzman of Argentina may be the world’s oldest chess player. He is still
playing chess at the age of 105.
During the war, British intelligence recruited chess masters Philip Stuart Milner-Berry,Hugh Alexander and Harry Golombek to break the German Enigma code and were successful.
In the United States, GM Reuben Fine, worked for the Navy and plotted out possible enemy submarine (U boats) routes.
George Soros, a chess player, is known as “The Man Who Broke the Bank of England.” He made a profit of $1 billion on forex trading during the 1992 Black Wednesday UK currency crisis.
Other interesting figures are Florencio Campomanes, Eugene Torre, the only GM to be also a movie actor and Roman Catholic saints Pope John Paul II and Teresa of Avila, the patron saint of chess players.
Local scene. Cepca`s October tournament will be this Sunday in Handuraw at 2 p.m. Our event will be spiced by the presence of six lovely ladies who will have their own set of prizes.
Eight teams played in the Inter-school team tournament for elementary students last weekend in Robinson Cybergate.
The top three teams were Tejero, Subangdaku and Labangon A. The individual gold medal winners were John Lester Belano in Board 1, Micah Caleb Guinto in Board 2, Mae Nicole Mangubat in Board 3 and Faith Marphine Mangubat in Board 4.
The tournament was organized by Eduard dela Torre of Cebu Chess Masters and was supported by Cepca.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Pestaño: Developing good chess habits

Thursday, October 16, 2014

FOR TODAY, I originally planned to write about the details of the Millionaire Chess Open in Las Vegas, where Wesley So got the biggest prize ever won by a Pinoy player in a single tournament. However, it is in every newspaper and websites and by now every Tom, Dick and Harry knows that Wesley won $100,000 and is now in the world’s top 10.
I have been playing chess for more than six decades now and know the most common mistakes by a player and how to overcome them. Here they are.
Don’t play too fast unless you are playing a blitz game. Use your time wisely and don’t be impatient. Develop your pieces early and avoid moving them multiple times.
Don’t neglect to castle.
Don’t give up in controlling the center and never underestimate its importance. Avoid premature attacks and don’t expect that you can win the game in the opening. Do not rely on inferior moves by your opponent.
Avoid making idle threats and useless checks. Develop your position first before grabbing the pawns offered. This is usually a trap.
Don’t attack with only one piece. Make sure that your other pieces can join as early as possible. Do not exchange pawns and pieces unless the position calls for it.
Do not create weaknesses in your position (knight forks, weak pawns, exposed king and
holes in your structure).
Do not lose material carelessly and always ask yourself “Is this move, safe?” Do not be mentally lazy and always calculate several moves in advance. Always be alert of your opponent’s defensive moves. He can counterattack any time.
Don’t be misled that you can overcome an early material advantage. Develop the habit of always searching for the best possible move. Always analyze each position accurately and completely. After every check and capture--on both sides--look for all possible consequences.
Don’t be passive. Counterattack when threatened. Do not be too involved in your own plans and ignore or underestimate your opponent’s threats. Play the position on the board rather than your opponent.
Do not underestimate the value of pawns such as “passed” and “weak” pawns and holes in your pawn structure.
Always be aware of the values of open files, diagonals, and rooks in the seventh rank. Break pins early and watch out for knight forks. Don’t be too willing in trading queens.
When your opponent makes a sacrifice, analyze the consequences. Also, always look for ways to make sacrifices yourself.
You should always protect and create passed pawns in the endgame and use your king aggressively.
Do not be intimidated by strong players by playing cautiously and do not be over-confident against weak players by playing carelessly. Do not play for a win at all costs if the game is a draw. Do not resign prematurely and be careful of stalemates against losing opponents.
Always review all games, lost or won, and remember studying is the best option to improve your game,
Kiddie. There will be a Kiddie Interschool team tournament this weekend at Robinsons Cybergate for five-player teams. The champion team will get P6,000 plus trophy, the second placer gets P4,000 and the third placer gets P3,000.
The sponsor is Cebu Chess Masters and Cebu Executives and Professionals Chess Association (Cepca).
The top three board finishers will also win cash prizes and medals. There will also be a prize for the top female participant. This tournament is open to kiddies 14 years and under who are elementary students. Time control is 25 minutes plus 5-second increment.
Registration is now open and interested players may contact Eduard dela Torre at 09328622010 or Cebu Chess Masters at 2668966.