Friday, 27 June 2014

Figjam Mid-Year Update

by Andrew

Greetings Readers, 

First of all, I'd like to say sorry about our general inactivity on here. I am going to try to post twice a week starting from next week (aiming for a Tuesday post and a Friday post).

Second of all, I would like to offer my congratulations to two of our contributors, Moulthun Ly and Junta Ikeda, who have been selected to represent Australia in the 2014 World Chess Olympiad in Norway starting the 1st of August! In the Sydney International Open (SIO) at the end of April, Moulthun and Junta both had fantastic performances, with Moulthun winning the tournament outright and registering his first Grand Master norm and Junta narrowly missing a GM norm but placing Equal 2nd and fulfilling the requirements for the International Master title. It will be great to watch how they go in Norway against many of the world's best. Before then however, they, along with two other members of the team, GM David Smerdon and 13-year-old FM Anton Smirnov, will be competing in the Politiken Cup - a strong open tournament in Denmark - as a warm up.

For more info on either of these tournaments, you can click on the links below:

Thirdly, the Gold Coast Open is on this weekend. Moulthun, Jonas and I are all participating, with Moulthun currently being the top seed. Last year Moulthun placed Equal First but was unlucky not to win outright, missing a last minute opportunity in his final round game with GM Lubomir Ftacnik:

Ly - Ftacnik GCO 2013

62.g4? (62.Kh7 +- - e.g., 62...Kf7 63.g4 Kf6 (...h5 64.g5) 64.h4 Kf7 65.g5 or 62...h5 63.Kg6 h4 64.g4) Kg8 63.h3 Kh8 64.h4 Kg8 Draw agreed.

Hopefully there will be better news to report this time around - Moulthun is certainly the favourite to win this year's event. Either way, the tournament should be hard fought and enjoyable to play in as it has been in previous years.

Fourthly, Magnus Carlsen just won both the World Rapid and the World Blitz Championships, meaning he is now World Champion in all three of the major time divisions of chess - a triple crown, if you will.

Lastly, White to play and win. Highlightable solution below. Enjoy!

White to play and win - A. Wotawa 1960

1.f8=Q Rxf8 2.gxh5+ Kf7 3.Rh8!! (3.Rxf8+ Kxf8 4. Rf1+ Kg8 5.h6 (5.Ke7 h6 =) gxh6 6.Ke7 h5 7.Rg1+ Kh8 8.Kf7 h6 =) Rxh8 4.Rf1+ Kg8 5.h6! gxh6 6.Ke7 with mate next move.