Saturday, November 13, 2010


(GM Mark Paragua. Photo from USCF website)

GMs Sergey Kudrin and Mark Paragua shared top honors with 7.5/9
at the Marshall Chess Club Championship held over two weekends,
October 29-31 and November 6-7, 2010. Another Pinoy, IM Renato
Naranja shared 9th to 12th place.

Along the way, Paragua defeated GM Aleksandr Lenderman (2537)
who placed 3rd and IM Justin Sarkar who tied for 4th to 8th
place. Below is GM Mark Paragua's best game of the tournament.

[Event "Marshall Open"]
[Site "Koszalin"]
[Date "2010.11.??"]
[Round "5"]
[White "Gm Paragua, Mark"]
[Black "IM Sarkar"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "B19"]
[WhiteElo "2505"]
[BlackElo "2413"]


1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 dxe4 4. Nxe4 Bf5 5. Ng3 Bg6
6. h4 h6 7. Nf3 Nd7 8. h5 Bh7 9. Bd3 Bxd3 10. Qxd3 e6
11. Bd2 Ngf6 12. O-O-O Be7

This is the tabia position of the Lobron line in the
Classical variation of the Caro-Kann Defense. German GM
Eric Lobron was mainly responsible for the development and
popularization of the kingside castling approach in the
Classical Caro-Kann thus the line now bears his name.

Eric Schiller, in his book " Complete Defense to King
Pawn Openings ", has this to say:

By placing the bishop at e7 Black will declare his intentions
of castling on the Kingside. White has already castled on the
queenside.When the kings sit at opposite sides of the board,
the general strategy is all-out attack. White'a attack is
usually based on kinghts in the center coordinating with an
advance of the g- pawn to g4 and eventually to g5. Black
operates on the c-file and a-file, , thrusting pawns forward
to open up lines.

13.Ne4 Nxe4 14.Qxe4 Nf6 15.Qd3 O-O?!

I think 15... Qd5 is a better alternative. The recent game of
GM Sadvakasov vs. GM Antonio, Asian Games, Guangzhou, China
11/21/2010 continued 16.c4 Qe4 17.Qb3 b5 18.Rhe1 Qh7 19.Ne5
Rc8 20.Nc6 Rc6 21.Qb5 Kd7 22.Bc3 a6 23.Qb7+ Rc7 24.Qa6 Rb8
25.Re3 Ne4?!(25...Kd8! with advantage ) 26.Qa4 Kc8 27.Qa6 Kd7
28.Qa4 Kc8 29.Qa6 1/2-1/2


GM Paragua is an excellent attacking player and it shows
in this game. At the expense of one pawn, White obtains a
dangerous attack against Black's castled King.

16...Nxg4 17.Rhg1 Nxf2!

According to the 2008 Mega Chess Base, this move is a novelty
and a good one if properly followed-up. Previously, Black tried
to support his knight with 17... f5. The silicon engine provides
the continuation 17. Qe2 Qc8 18. Ne5 Nxe5 19.dxe5 f4 20.Rg6
as favorable for White.

18.Qe2 Nxd1 19.Bxh6 Bf6!?

Best is 18...Qd5! 19.Bxg7 Rfd8

20.Bxg7 Bxg7 21.h6 Qf6 22.hxg7 Qh6+ 23.Kb1 Rfd8

24.Qxd1 Rd5 25.Ne5 Qe3?

Best is 25... Rad8 with the threat of Rxd4. However, White
can still maintain the initiative after 26.Qf1 threatening

26.Ng4 Qf4 27.Qd2!


The White queen cannot be taken because of the obvious
27.Nf6+ checkmate.


Kh7 29.Qxf4 Rxf4 30.g8=Q+ Rxg8 31.Nxg8 e5

The resulting end game is a clear win for White because Black's
king is trapped along the h- file and could not support the march
of his pawns. The rest is a matter of technique, as they say.

32.Kc1 Rf2 33.Ne7 e4 34.Rg3 f5 35.Ng8 Rf1+ 36.Kd2 e3+
37.Ke2 Rf2+ 38.Kd3 Rd2+ 39.Kxe3 Rxc2 40.Kf4 Rxb2
41.Kxf5 Rf2+ 42.Ke6 1-0

Final position.

Black resigns as the mate cannot be prevented. Nice attacking
game from GM Mark Paragua.

Replay the game below..

Sunday, October 17, 2010


( THe winning team receiving their prize from Atty. Jong Guevarra Jr. Also in photo is team sponsor Glen Paclar and Team Manager Engr. Jun Atmosfera Jr.)

The Davao Youngstars team cemented its claim as the new chess stars of the Davao region by defeating the Davao Experienced Stars 19-17 in the 1st Atty. Jong Guevarra Cup- Davao Rising Stars vs. Davao Experienced Stars chess duel. The huge upset netted the team composed of FM Austin Jacob Literatus, FM elect John Ray Batucan, Jerwell Andoy, James Bulicatin, Mohammad Sacar and Erwin Tubog Jr. the winner's prize of P 12,000.00 plus a big trophy.

( The winners whopping it up with other players and supporters)

It was a double celebration for the Youngstars team as Jerwell Andoy bagged the best individual performance worth P 1,000.00 plus a chess life magazine. Andoy tied with IM Candidate Reggie Olay with 5 pts. each at the end of the match when the latter got ambushed in the 5th round by Jay Bulicatin in another huge upset. In the ensuing sudden death Armageddon, Olay won the toss coin and choose the white pieces with 10 mins. playing time while Andoy handled the black pieces with 7 minutes but only needing a draw to win the individual prize. In the ensuing play and perhaps due to fatigue, Olay uncharacteristically put his queen in prise which Andoy readily gobbled forcing Olay to resign a few moves later.

( The sudden death Armageddon game for the best individual performance between IM Candidate Reggie Olay and Jerwell Andoy)

The match was a big success with Engr. Allan Diez conceding that perhaps the 1st Mindanaoan Grand Master will emerged from among the members of the winning team. It was also a good tune-up for the Youngstars who will pit their skills with other equally talented youngstars all over the Philippines during the grand finals of the Shell National Active Youth Tourney scheduled to be held in Manila this weekend.

( CM Vincent Umayan vs. FM Austin Jacob Literatus ).

The winning team was sponsored by Glen Paclar with Engr. Jun Atmosfera as team manager.

( The Davao Experienced team with Atty. Jong Guevarra. Not in photo is team member James Infiesto ).

The Davao Experienced Stars team was composed of IM Candidate Reggie Olay, NM Alexander Lupian, NM Cedric Magno, CM Vincent Umayan, CM James Infiesto and Engr. Allan Diez who was also the team sponsor.

( The winning team with their trophy.)

The highly successful chess match was sponsored by Atty. Jong Guevarra Jr. and supported by Glen Paclar, Engr. Allan Diez and James Infiesto, Region 11 coordinator of National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP).

( Ubusan ginagmay edition. Its payback time for me and partner Nofre Reyes and Ali Jover against the Youngstars team B ).

The match was organized by the Chess Excellence Ltd. Co and supported by the Metro Toril Chess Association (MTCA).

( Ubusan big time edition. Davao's top guns of blitz in action ).

Final Standing:


Jerwell Andoy - 5 points
FM elect John Ray Batucan - 3.5 "
FM Austin Jacob Literatus - 3.5 "
Jay Bulicatin - 3.0 "
Mohammad Sacar - 2.0 "
Erwin Tubog Jr. - 2.0 "
TOTAL 19.0 points


IM Candidate Reggie Olay - 5.0 points
NM Alexander Lupian - 4.5 "
NM Cedric Magno - 3.0 "
CM James Infiesto - 2.0 "
CM Vincent Umayan - 2.0 "
Engr. Allan Diez - 0.5 "
TOTAL 17.0 points

Saturday, October 16, 2010


The Davao Youngstars team showed their true worth by posting a 1 point lead 10.5-9.5 midway through the 1st Atty. Jong Guevarra Cup- Davao Youngstars vs. Davao Experience Stars Chess duel held at the Toril Chess Plaza last Saturday, Oct. 16, 2010. Out-rated but never outfought, the Youngstars outfoxed their veteran opponents with crucial wins delivered by Toril's 1-2 punch FM elect John Ray Batucan and FM Austin Jacob Literatus.

( Atty. Jong Guevarra Jr and IM Candidate Reggie Olay doing the ceremonial moves ushering the start of the classic chess match. Looking on are some of Davao's finest chessplayers and stakeholders)

Batucan swept his first 3 opponents with wins against Engr. Allan Diez, NM Cedric Magno and CM Vincent Umayan. Literatus, on the other hand, halved the point with NM Alex Lupian in the 1st round, and won against CM James Infiesto and Engr. Allan Diez. Jerwell Andoy also pitched in, win wins against CM James infiesto (advance game ), NM Cedric Magno and CM Vincent Umayan. He suffered his only loss against IM Candidate Reggie Olay.

(Toril's 1-2 punch FM elect John Ray Batucan and FM Austin Jacob Literatus, pondering their moves against NM Cedric Magno and CM James Infiesto, respectively, in 2nd round action).

Meanwhile, IM Candidate Reggie Olay showed why he is the runaway favorite to win the individual top performer award by breezing through his first 3 opponents, winning handily against Mohammad Sacar, Erwin Tubog Jr. and Jerwell Andoy, respectively, to lead the Experience stars. He was ably supported by NM Alexander Lupian who delivered wins against Mohammad Sacar and Erwin Tubog while drawing his game against FM AJ Literatus.

Showing who's the boss. Erwin Tubog Jr. vs. IM Candidate Reggie Olay. NM Alexander Lupian ( standing w/ hat), keenly watching the game.

However, the veterans showed their true worth by winning the 3rd round 4-2 paving the way for an exciting finish today. The last 3 rounds will be played today at the resthouse of Gen Paclar at Eden, Bayabas, Toril, Davao City. The winning team will receive cash prize amounting to P 12,000.00 and a big trophy while the top scorer will receive a cash prize of P 1,000.00 + chess life magazine. The keenly awaited chess match is sponsored by Atty.Jong Guevarra Jr. and supported by Glen Paclar and Engr. Allan Diez. Special mention also to Engr. Jun Atmosfera Jr., Team Manager of the Youngstars, James Infiesto, Region XI Coordinator of National Chess Federation of the Philippines (NCFP), Alfred Moulic-Arbiter, Engr. Nofre Reyes, Henry Fajardo and the rest of the players and chess supporters for making this event possible. The match is organized by the Chess Excellence Ltd. Co and supported by the Metro Toril Chess Association (MTCA).

( Team Experience sponsor Engr. Allan Diez vs. Jay Bulicatin. The game ended in a draw. Watching the game is Engr. Jun Atmosfera Jr., Team Manager of the Davao Youngstars )

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


( Atty. Jong Guevarra Jr. awarding the champion's trophy to Erwin Tubog, winner of the 2008 1st IM Marlo Micayabas Chess Tourney. Tubog will be one of the players for the Youngstars team )

The first ever chess match featuring Davao's up and coming youngstars vs. Davao's veteran and finest woodpushers is finally set on October 16 and 17, 2010. The venue will be the Toril Chess Plaza on the first day and Glen Paclar's resthouse at Eden, Bayabas, Toril, Davao City on the second day. The winning team will receive cash prize amounting to P 12,000.00 and a big trophy while the top scorer will receive a cash prize of P 1,000.00 + chess life magazine. The keenly awaited chess match is sponsored by Atty.Jong Guevarra Jr. and supported by Glen Paclar and Engr. Allan Diez.

Now lets introduce first the members of the Davao Youngstars team.

1. FIDE Master Austin Jacob Literatus -13 years old ( 2010 ASEAN 14 and under champ)

2. FIDE Master elect John Ray Batucan - 14 years old( 2008 ASEAN 12 and under champ)

( FM elect John Ray Batucan and FM Austin Jacob Literatus. the 1-2 punch of the Youngstars).

I have already featured the chess exploits of these two youngstars in my past posts in this blog so there is no need to elaborate.

( Mohamad Sacar playing board 1 for Holy Cross of Davao College )

Course: BSCA-4
Age: 21
NCFP Rating: 1996
Latest Accomplishment:

1st JVR Interschool tournament 2010 Board 1 :Individual and TEam Champion
Kadayawan Chess Open 2010 : 1st Runner Up
DACS 2010 Board 1: Individual and Team Champion



Shell National Active Chess Championship (2003-2004), kiddies category, champion
Shell National Active Chess Championship (2004-2005), kiddies category, champion
DAVRAA (2005-2006) held in Mati City, champion
Shell National Active Chess Championship (2005-2006), junior category, champion
PRISAA MEET(2007-2008) college division, held in Broken Shire College, champion
Regional Prisaa Meet (2007-2008) held in University of Mindanao, champion
National Prisaa Meet(2007-2008) held in Zamboanga, 3rd place
Chess Tournament junior category (2008-2009), held in GS Mall, champion
Chess Tournament junior category (2008-2009), held in HCDC, champion
Chess Tournament junior category (2008-2009), held in Damosa St. Dvo., champion
Chess Tournament Class B category (2008-2009) held in GS Mall, 2nd place
Samal chess tournament (2008-2009), junior category, champion
CHED meet (2009-2010), held in HCDC champion
Regional CHED meet (2009-2010), held in University of Mindanao, champion

2009 Kadayawan Open Champion
2010 Shell National Youth Active Tourney- junior champion ( Cagayan de Oro leg)
Board 1- Jose Maria College varsity team

6.Erwin Tubog

( Erwin Tubog vs. Nofre Reyes during the Toril Youngstars vs. veterans match )

2008 IM Marlo Micayabas Chess Tourney- champion
2010 Shell National Youth Active Tourney- tied for 1st ( Davao City leg)
Holy Cross of Davao College - varsity player

Team sponsor is Glen Paclar while the team Manager is Engr.Jun Atmosfera Jr. Team coach is Henry Fajardo while th eteam analyst is Engr.Nofre Reyes.

The Davao Experience Stars on the other hand,is composed of IM candidate Reggie Olay, NM Alexander Lupian, NM Cedric Magno, CM Vincent Umayan, CM James Infiesto and Engr. Alan Diez. Team sponsor is Engr. Allan Diez while the team manager is Maning Eva of Multicar.

I will feature the chess exploits of the Experience Stars in my next post..

Friday, August 27, 2010


Originally posted at Philippine Chess Portal Website.

Congratulations to NM Edgar Reggie Olay for nailing his 2nd IM Norm in the just concluded 6th Prospero Pichay Cup International Chess Tournament at the Ninoy Aquino Stadium in Adriatico St. Manila. It was in the 2008 Subic International Open where Olay got his first IM norm, the day he fully returned to active competition after several years of hiatus. Olay is a Palarong Pambansa gold medalist in 1993 and topped the 1996 Shell Youth Active Chess Championship juniors' category in 1996. In 1997, Olay won a big tournament in Subic over a tough field of competitors. The victory was worth P30,000 and an NM title for Olay.

The soft-spoken Olay, a registered nurse, also played for Davao City in the National Inter-Cities and Municipalities Chess Championships from 1994 to 1998.

Then came the accident in February 2001 that almost cost him his life. Olay and several other players were returning to Kidapawan City from Amas after a chess tournament when the pick-up truck they were riding in turned turtle along the road. Fortunately for Olay and his companions, no one was killed in the freak incident.

Olay, however, suffered a cut in his head that needed seven stitches to close.

The accident didn't stop Olay from playing chess, but it affected his performance and this, coupled by the fact that he landed a job at the Kidapawan Doctors Hospital, forced him to stay away from the game for quite a while.

In 2006, Olay played again and won the Davao Open Chess. A year later, he won the Chadric Open, showing he still got the talent to dominate the big names in local chess arena.

Final standing - 6th Pichay Cup International

Name OLAY Edgar Reggie
Starting rank 29
Rating 2289
Rating national 0
Rating international 2289
Ratingperformance 2455
FIDE rtg +/- 30,5
Points 5,5
Rank 8
Federation PHI
Ident-Number 0

Rd. SNo Name Rtg FED Pts. Res.
1 6 GM GOMEZ John Paul 2527 PHI 6,0 w 0
2 8 GM HAZNEDAROGLU Kivanc 2501 TUR 5,5 s ½
3 41 LEGASPI Edmundo 2118 PHI 0,5 w 1
4 26 FM SEGARRA Randy 2308 PHI 4,5 s 1
5 16 IM RANOLA Yves 2397 PHI 5,5 w ½
6 25 WGM POURKASHIYAN Atousa 2308 IRI 5,0 s 0
7 22 IM TIRTO 2360 INA 3,5 w 1
8 12 IM NOLTE Rolando 2425 PHI 5,5 s ½
9 11 GM GONZALES Jayson 2435 PHI 4,5 w 1

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


( The winning team with team manager Engr. Jun Atmosfera )

The Toril Youngstars team proved its mettle as it outsmarted the Toril Veterans team in the two days grudge match held on August 1 and 15, 2010. Venue of the match was the Toril Chess Club located at the Toril District Plaza. Erwin Tubog topscored for the Youngstars team with 5 pts in 6 matches.

( The veterans team from left: Shaun Bacalanmo, Henry Fajardo, Zaldy
Tabanao, Atty. Jong Guevarra, Chris Yap and Nofre Reyes ).

The Youngstars scored heavily in the first 4 rounds and it was only in the last 2 rounds where the Veterans made a stand eventually winning the last round by a score of 4-2. The veterans team appears to be rusty and could not cope-up with the Youngstars in the active match where players are only given 30 mins. each to finish the game.

(Anthony Mosqueda vs. Atty. Jong Guevarra. The game ended in a draw.)

The grudge match eventually ended in favor of the Youngstars team by a
score of 22 - 14. The winning team received a cash price of P 3,000.00.
The match was sponsored by Atty. Jong Guevarra Jr. of the Guevarra Law
Office and and was ably supported by One Network Bank (ONB) of Toril .

( Erwin Tubog vs. Nofre Reyes )



1. FM elect JOHN RAY BATUCAN (1915) - 3.5 POINT
6. ERWIN TUBOG - 5.0

( FM elect John Ray Batucan and FM Austin Jacob LIteratus. the 1-2 punch of the Youngstars.

( Chris Yap vs. Adrian Llanos )


1. NOFRE REYES (2013) - 3.0 POINTS
2. ATTY. JONG GUEVARRA (1900) - 1.5 "
4. CHRIS YAP - 1.0
5. HENRY FAJARDO (1959) - 3.0

( The winning team receiving the cash price of P 3,000.00 from Atty.
Jong Guevarra and Chris Yap of One Network Bank (ONB) of Toril ).

Sunday, August 22, 2010


( Anthony Mosqueda pondering his move against Atty. Jong Guevarra
during the Toril All-Stars vs. Toril Young Stars match held recently.)

Anthony Mosqueda, FM Austin Jacob Literatus, and FM elect John Ray
Batucan each scored 4.0 pts in the Toril Blitz Championship but Mosqueda
was declared the champion via superior tie-break. The three divided the
total cash prize amounting to P 1,500.00 courtesy of Guevarra law Office.
The 5 round Swiss system tournament was held last August 1, 2010 at the
Toril Chess Plaza and was a side event of the Toril All Stars vs. Toril
Young Stars chess match.

Final standing:

1. Mosqueda Anthony - 4.0 pts.
2. Literatus Austin Jacob 4.0
3. Batucan John Ray 4.0
4. Batucan Neptali 3.0
5. Tubog Erwin 3.0
6. Jover Ali 2.5
7. Bacalanmo Shawn 2.5
8. Reyes Nofre 2.5
9. Guevara Jong 2.0
10. Llanos Adrian 2.0
11. Yngayo Dhona 2.0
12. Fajardo Henry 1.5
13. Buna Christy 1.0

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


Good day folks! Today's feature is all about the Modern Benoni plus an annotated game from my good friend Engr. Jun Atmosfera.

Endre Vegh aptly said in the foreword of his Book " Starting Out - Modern Benoni " that:

" The Modern Benoni is a dynamic opening and offers black good chances of winning the game, probably more so than most other defenses against 1. d4, but at the cost of substantial risks, with a very low quantity of draws. But if you do not feel chicken, but want to play entertaining and dynamic chess, then the modern Benoni may be for you ".

It is also called the Son of Sorrow. The Modern Benoni grew in popularity when it was extensively used as a weapon by GM Mikhail Tal in his battle for the World Championship against the great champion GM Botvinnik. Among its adherent is another attacking genius and former world champ GM Garry Kasparov who used this defense in winning a beautiful game against GM Korchnoi in the 1982 Chess Olympiad.

Now let us turn-over to Engr. Jun Atmosfera.

" I started playing the Modern Benoni Defense sometime in 1973 ( that was a long time ago) when I came across and replayed the games of Mikhail Tal in his World Championship match with Botvinnik in 1960.It was also employed by Bobby Fischer in his first ever win against Boris Spassky in the third game of their world title match in Reykjavik, Iceland on July 17, 1972. Prior to their world title match, the two met five times and Fischer lost three times with the black pieces (one King’s Gambit and two Gruenfeld defense) and drew two times with white, both Ruy Lopez games.

I was fascinated by the defense against white's d4 or c4 opening as it is a fighting defense and tactical fireworks are abundant due to the imbalanced formation of both sides. Of course I now know that this defense has been somewhat refuted at the super-grandmaster level but still good and exciting for club players ".

( Engr. Jun Atmosfera vs. Atty. Jong Guevarra in 1st round action during the 1st IM Marlo Micayabas Toril Chess Challenge 2009 )

Here is an example of my game with this defense:

[Event "Toril Invitational Chess CLassic"]
[Site "Toril Chess Club, Davao City, Philipines"]
[Date "2007.2.17"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Henry Fajardo"]
[Black "Engr. Jun Atmosfera"]
[Result "0-1"]
[WhiteELO "1960"]
[BlackELO "1900"]

Time control: 25 mins./game

( With brief annotation from Engr. Atmosfera and side comments
from Caissa's Father. )

Modern Benoni Defense

1. Nf3 Nf6 2.d4 c5 3. d5 d6 4. c4 e6 5. Nc3 exd5 6. cxd5 g6

7. h3 Bg7 8. e4 0-0 9. Bd3

This is the main line of the Modern variation.

Endre Vegh: The young chess players who started playing only recently can
identify the Modern Benoni line h2-h3, Bd3 because of its popularity.
However, it was not always so popular. It is the positional players approach
to the Modern Benoni these days. My evaluation of this variation is Black is
under slight pressure, but would be able to keep the balance.

9... a6 ?!

Endre Vegh: 9.. b5! The best way to meet White's loss of time with h2-h3.
Black exploits the fact that the White king is still in the centre.
Otherwise, Black will have problems facing 0-0, Bf4, Re1, and e4-e5.

10. a4 Re8 11. 0-0 Nbd7 12. Bf4 Qc7 13. Qe2!?

Caissa's Father: White's Queen is somewhat misplaced in e2 due to the
presence of Black's menacing rook on the opposite file. In the game
Bacrot-Nazar, Evry 2004, White essayed the move 13. Re1 Nh5 14. Bh2
Rb8 15. Be2 Nhf6 16. Nd2 Bf8 17. Kh1 Nb6 18. f4 Nfd7 19. Bf1 Bg7
20. Nf6 f6 21. Qd2 Qd8 1-0 32 moves.

13... Nh5 14. Bh2 Rb8 15. Rfe1 f5 16. Ng5! c4!?

Engr. Atmosfera: Sacrificing a pawn to gain a tempo.

17) Bxc4

Engr. Atmosfera: If 17.Ne6 cxd3 18.Nxc7 dxe2 19.Nxe8 winning the
exchange. However, Black can reply instead of cxd3,17... Rxe6
18.dxe6 cxd3 19.e7 dxe2 20.e8=Q+ Nf8 and has two minor pieces
for his rook.

17... Ne5 18. Ba2 f4 19. Ne6 Qe7 20. Nxf4 Nxf4 21. Bxf4 Rf8 22. Qe3

Bd7 23. Ne2 b5 24. a5 Nc4! 25. Bxc4 bxc4 26. Qg3 Rxf4! 27. Qxf4 Rxb2

28.e5 Qxe5!

Better than 28...Bxe5 when white has 29.Nd4

29. Qxe5 Bxe5 30. Rac1? (f4!)

30... Bb5 31. Nc3 Bd4 32. Ne4 Be5 33. g3 Ra2 34. Kh1 Rxa5 35.f4 Bb2

36. Nxd6 Bxc1 37. Rxc1 Bd7 38. Nxc4 Rxd5 39. Kg2?

39.Nb6 exchanging the knight for the Bishop is drawish. If 39.Kh2 Rc5
40.Rd1 Bxh3, Black is one pawn up.

39 ... Rc5 40. Rc2 Ba4 41) Rc3 Bb5

0 - 1
White resigns because he will lose his knight.

Time consumed: White-23 mins. Black-19 mins.

Engr. Atmosfera: Well, the game I've presented is not perfect model
of the Benoni and the game against Henry Fajardo could have resulted
in a draw, but it shows how resilient and full of tactical chances the
Benoni offers, especially for shorter time controls.

Replay the game below.


( GM Ramirez receiving the US Open champion's trophy. Photo from )

The 111th Annual U.S. Open ended at the Hyatt Regency in Irvine, California with GM Alejandro Ramirez bagging the championship with an unbeaten score of of 7 wins and 2 draws in 9 rounds, with an added cash bonus for the solo win. The Philippines was well represented in the tourney with IM Julio Catalino Sadorra playing on top board in the last round against GM Ramirez and holding the latter to a draw although a pawn down in a rook ending. IM Sadorra ended the tourney with a score of 7.5 points good for a tie for 2nd place along with GM's Akobian, Shabalov and FM Naroditsky.

( IM Ino Sadorra . Photo from )

A total of 474 players from all over the country took part in this annual event held in memory of the late Jerry Hanken, the indefatigable chess promoter, columnist and player. The Philippine contingent consist of IM Julio Catalino Sadorra, GM Mark Paragua, IM Enrico Sevillano, FM's Joaquin and Joel Banawa, among others who pit wits against a tough field consisting of 8 GM's, 10 IM's and a host of titled players and veteran campaigers. GM Mark Paragua and IM Enrico Sevillano tied for 6th to 23rd place with 7 points together with another US based Filipino FM Joaquin Banawa. FM John Daniel Bryant (stepson of IM Enrico Sevillano) and another Pinoy ace FM Joel Banawa led the 6.5 pointers and tied for 24th to 41th place.

(GM Mark Paragua. Photo from USCF website)

Final standing:

Ttl Name Rate Pts Rnd1 Rnd2 Rnd3 Rnd4 Rnd5 Rnd6 Rnd7 Rnd8 Rnd9
1 GM Ramirez, Alejandro 2645 8.0 W216 W200 W 58 W 23 W137 W 7 D 2 W 3 D4
2 GM Akobian, Varuzhan 2698 7.5 W243 W114 W 50 W 18 W 8 D 6 D 1 W 14 D5
3 GM Shabalov, Alexander 2632 7.5 W245 W270 W 88 W 77 D 11 W 42 W 15 L 1 W24
4 IM Sadorra,Julio Cat. 2471 7.5 W176 W149 W 32 L 12 W 57 W 46 W 47 W 50 D1
5 FM Naroditsky, Daniel 2453 7.5 W179 W 65 D 56 W 29 W 33 D 10 W 58 W 9 D2
6 GM Gareyev, Timur 2689 7.0 W441 W115 D 36 W 22 W 98 D 2 D 25 W 77 D11
7 GM Khachiyan, Melikse 2590 7.0 W129 W112 W 39 D144 W140 L 1 W 37 W 28 D12
8 IM Matikozyan, Andran 2545 7.0 W422 W117 W 35 W 45 L 2 W 36 D 31 W 30 D16
9 IM Sevillano,Enrico 2536 7.0 W271 W261 D 46 W 38 D 12 W 28 W 17 L 5 W50
10 GM Paragua, Mark C 2529 7.0 W213 W197 W 19 D 14 W 79 D 5 W137 D 12 D20
11 GM Gurevich, Dmitry 2481 7.0 W250 W218 W259 W196 D 3 D 25 W 22 D 16 D6
12 IM Bercys, Salvijus 2467 7.0 W421 W262 W 37 W 4 D 9 D 16 W 48 D 10 D7
13 IM Mulyar, Michael 2457 7.0 W375 W162 W 59 W 61 D 20 D 17 L 50 W 53 W47
14 IM Cornejo, Max 2456 7.0 W219 W150 W 85 D 10 D 30 W 32 W145 L 2 W52
15 GM Kaufman, Lawrence 2452 7.0 W180 W109 W 91 D140 W 34 W 20 L 3 D 60 W48
16 IM Ginsburg, Mark 2431 7.0 W274 W159 W145 D 24 W 96 D 12 W 59 D 11 D8
17 FM Beelby, Matthew 2358 7.0 W376 D111 W157 W 87 W144 D 13 L 9 W 55 W60
18 FM Banawa, Jouaquin 2346 7.0 W308 W127 W 68 L 2 W 63 D 82 W 66 D 52 -X-
19 Gupta, Ankit 2290 7.0 W187 W155 L 10 D105 W113 W 94 W200 D 42 W71
20 FM Dean, Jim H 2287 7.0 W222 W204 W 60 W258 D 13 L 15 W119 W 25 D10
21 Carreto, Giovanni 2257 7.0 W284 D265 W217 L 96 W121 D149 W103 W145 W70
22 NM Williams Paulsen, 2257 7.0 W311 W183 W 73 L 6 W158 W 68 L 11 W 59 W42
23 West, Vanessa A 2075 7.0 W382 W316 W139 L 1 L 48 W169 W136 W 82 W45


Powerhouse Doña Carmen Denia National High School (DCDNHS) bagged the high school boys title in the 1st JVR Inter-School Chess Team Championships held at Emcor conference room, J.P. Laurel Avenue over the weekend. DCDNHS's one-two punch consisting of 2008 ASEAN 12 and under champ John Ray Batucan and 2010 ASEAN 14 and under champ Austin Jacob Literatus delivered the points for their school as expected.

Batucan scored a perfect 10 points while Literatus tallied 9.5 points as DCDNHS garnered the highest score of 19.5 points at the end of the 11 rounds tourney.University of Mindanao's Alvin Acas and Denzel Amar, who lost to the Batucan Literatus pair in the final round, took the runner-up honors with 16 points while the Cabantian National High School placed third with 14 points.

Meanwhile, The Holy Cross of Davao College (HCDC) captured the men's crown by scoring 16 points in the five-round collegiate division. HCDC bested UM and JMC which finished with identical 14 points. University of Mindanao (UM) clinched the women's title by scoring 16 points over HCDC's 13.5 points. HCDC's Mohammad Sacar and Erwin Tubog Jr., along with JMC's Jay Bulicatin, earned 4.5 points apiece while UM's May Micayabas, JMC's Mary Rose Sevilla and UM's Noelyn Enriquez made perfect five points each.

In high school girls, Jose Maria College (JMC) and DCDNHS each tallied 15 points after nine rounds to place first and second, respectively. Davao Central College of Toril got 14 points for third while CNHS had 12 and good for fourth place.

Doña Pilar Learning Center (DPLC)-Sasa and Don Juan dela Cruz Central Elementary School (DJDCCES)-Toril, meanwhile, shared top honors in the elementary division.

DPLC ruled the boys team event with 17.5 points followed by DJDCCES (15) and JMC (14.5) after 11 rounds, while DPLC (11.5) topped the girls side with 15.5 points while DPLC (11.5) was second and Barner Learning Center (10) in third after nine rounds.

The awarding of prizes is on August 14, 2010 on the same venue. The tournament was organized in celebration of Emcor's 52nd anniversary and held in cooperation with HCDC. Chief Arbiter of the successful tourney is veteran NM Prospero " Bebot " Cruz.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


Just got hold of a copy of GM Tiger Hilarp Persson's Chess Book
" Tiger's Modern ". The book is well written and mainly focus on
the 4...a6- Modern system. There is also a discussion on variations
where Black does not play 4...a6, one of which is the so called Lazy
variation. After a quick look of Chapter 9 of the Book, I was amused
to find-out that the so called Lazy variation was the one employed
against me by IM Oliver Barbosa during his 2009 Toril simul exhibition.

For more detailed result of the said simul plus pictures just click

( IM OLiver Barbosa making his move against Caissa's Father during
the 2009 Toril Simul ).

I am hereby posting the game with some annotations.

[Event "2009 Toril Chess Simul"]
[Site "Toril District Plaza, Toril, Davao City, Philippines "]
[Date "2009.11.14"]
[Round "1"]
[White "IM Oliver Barbosa"]
[Black "Atty. Jong Guevarra Jr."]
[Result "1-0"]
[WhiteELO "2452"]
[BlackELO "1835"]

1. e4 g6!?

I discarded my favorite Sicilian Dragon in favor of the more solid
Modern Defense. I was somewhat intimidated by IM Barbosa's stature
and accomplishments ( 2009 New York International Open champion )
and was afraid to lose early. At hindsight, the strategy was wrong.
According to NM Alex Lupian who watched the simul, the players
should strive for a complicated position so that the Master would
spend time finding the correct move, considering the number of his

2. d4 Bg7 3. c3 d6 4. Nf3 Nf6 5. Bd3 O-O

This is the so called Lazy variation against the Modern.

GM Persson: The c3- lines are the least ambitious of White's choices
against the Modern, but that does not mean they are all bad. By
pampering the d-pawn early on White is free to finish development
behind the centre and does not worry too much about what Black is

6. Bg5 h6 7. Bh4 Re8 8. O-O e5 9. Nbd2 Nc6

GM Persson: The Knight at c6 is not a very good square of the knight.
Instead, it is better at Nbd7 supporting the push e5. The Re8 should
also be avoided due to the push d5, when the rook is badly placed on
e8 and - at some point - will have to go back to f8, eventually losing
two tempi.

10. dxe5

In his book, GM Persson prefers the move 10. d5. He further stated
that it is generally to Black's advantage if White exchanges on e5.

10...dxe5 11. Nc4 a6 12. Ne3 b5

GM Larsson: The only condition for the a6-b5 system to work is that
White has played Nc3 or else b5 will strike thin air and c5 will be
easily met by c3.

In other words, the 4...a6-b5 system is not advisable against the
Lazy variation as it merely weakens Black's queenside. The b5 pawn
would be vulnerable to White's attack as what happened in this game.

13. Qc2 Bb7 14. b4! Nb8 15. a4! c6 16. c4 Nbd7 17. Rfd1 Rc8

18. axb5 axb5 19. c5 Ra8 20. Nf1 Qc7 21. N1d2 Nf8 22. Nb3 Ne6

Black has emerged from the opening with a solid but passive position.
White continues to maneuver his pieces to improve his position while
Black tries to find ways to hold the position.

23. Bf1 Rxa1 24. Rxa1 Ra8 25. Rxa8+ Bxa8 26. Ne1 Bb7

27. f3 Nh5?

This move started Black's downfall. I should have played 27...g5 first
before playing Nh5. This omission proves fatal as the game wears on.

28. Qa2 Bc8 29. Qa8 Kh7 30. Na5 Bd7 31. Be7!

If Black had only played 27.. g5 then the White bishop could not have
reached e7. Now it had joined the action to further suffocate Black's

31... Nd4 32. Bd6 Qc8 33. Qxc8 Bxc8

After the exchange of Queens I thought that I can still hold the
position. My position was still passive but White would be hard
pressed to penetrate my position. The rest of the participants
were also struggling with their games thus maybe IM Barbosa would
be kind enough to allow me a draw, or so I think.

34. Nd3 f6 35. Kf2 g5 36. Nc1 Nf4 37. g3 Nfe6 38. Bh3 Kg8

39. Ncb3 Nxb3 40. Nxb3 Kf7 41. Na5 Bd7 42. Bg4

Black is now in a virtual zugzwang. Only his g7 bishop can be
moved without losing the game. In the other boards, Adrian Llanos
who is a varsity player of the University of Mindanao just scored
a draw while in another board IM Barbosa was a pawn down in an
opposite bishop ending. At this point there were only three players
including me whose gave was not yet finished. My chance to hold a
draw has became more dimmer.

Bh8 43. h4 Bg7 44. Bh5+ Kg8 45. hxg5 hxg5 46. Bg4 Kf7

47. Nb7 Bc8 48. Nd8+ Nxd8 49. Bxc8

At this point I stopped recording the moves. I resigned a few moves
later as White's King was able to penetrate my position via the Kg2-
h3-g4-f5 route. At any rate Black's chance to hold the position is
quite remote considering that there were only two players including
me that were left battling it out with IM Barbosa thus his entire
concentration could now be focused in our game. Incidentally, IM
Oliver Barbosa scored 15 wins and yielded only 2 draws in the said


Replay the game below.