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Sports Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, November 27, 2011

Chi wins Capital Region Open

By Peter Henner

Patrick Chi, the Schenectady Club Champion, won the Capital Region Open with a perfect 4-0 to take first place and the $200 first prize, winning by a full point over second-place Sam Barsky who won $100.

Robert Campbell, a former Capital District player who now lives in Massachusetts; Randall Gay; Albany Club Champion Dean Howard; Jeffrey La Comb; and Chen Qu, all finished with an even score of 2-2, followed by myself (1½-2½) and Akhil Kamma (1-3). Howard and Gay divided the $50 third prize and Campbell, La Comb, and Qu, divided the $100 prize for best under 2000.

The under 1800 section was won by Koushik Pernati (3½-½) over seven other competitors, including local players Cory Northrup (2½-1½), Dillip Aaron (2-2), Christopher Caravaty (2-2), and Carlos Varela (1½-2½).

The under 1400 section was won by Jonathan D’Alonzo with a perfect score of 4-1, over seven other players, including local players Yogi Kanakamedala (2½-1½) and Max Kuperman (1-3).

The under 1000 section resulted in a four-way tie between Joseph and Jovanna D’Alonzo, Philip Thibault, and Gowtham Puviarasu at (3-1). Thibault was awarded first place on tie-break points.

The 11-player section also included Carlos Varela's two daughters Tatiana (2-2) and Catalina (1-3), and Rhonda Phillips, the wife of Schenectady player John Phillips (2-2).

Albany coffee house hosts informal speed chess tourney

The Albany Chess Club conducted an unrated game-in-15 tournament on Tuesday, Nov. 1, at the Hudson River Coffee House in Albany.  The informal venue hopes to host other chess events, and goes out of its way to be hospitable to chess players, having boards and chess pieces available for customers.

The four-round event resulted in a tie for first between Jonathan Morse and me.  We were tied with perfect scores of 3-0 and played each other in the last round. I had a clearly won position but John was able to find a neat trap, which rendered my extra bishop useless and forced a draw.

Glenn Perry (2½-1½), who directed, finished third, followed by Akhil Kamma, Jason Denham, Christopher Caravaty, and Kenny Rossman — all with 2-2 — Gregory (1-3) and Harry Letko (0-4).

Club championships

All of the club championships are now underway.

The Albany Championship will be a single round robin with 10 players, led by defending Champion Dean Howard.

The championship also features two players relatively new to tournament chess, Akhil Kamma and Chris Caravaty, who have demonstrated that they can be tough opponents.

In the first two rounds, veteran player Art Alowitz has scored upset draws against both Tim Wright and myself. Dean Howard was also held to a draw by Jason Denham, despite having a 600 point rating advantage.

The Schenectady championships have also seen their share of upsets, where Phil Sells was defeated by Jeff Capitummino. 


In my last column, I reported that Deepak Aaron, the Capital District's strongest player, was undefeated in a simultaneous exhibition that he conducted at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute on Oct. 15.

However, Deepak lost one game, to RPI student Jeffrey La Comb (a Class A player who also defeated me in the Capital Region Open).  I have obtained a copy of the moves from Mr. La Comb and hope to publish the game in the next week’s column.

This week’s problem

The current issue of Chess Life contains an article celebrating what would have been the 100th birthday of Samuel Reshevsky, a child prodigy who came to this country at the age of 8 and startled the world by defeating the best local players in simultaneous exhibitions.

He played in his first master tournament in 1922 at the age of 11, and went on to become a world champion contender in the 1930s, ’40s and ’50s, perennially winning the United States championship and competing in the six-player match to determine the world champion in 1948.

Even though he was eclipsed by Bobby Fischer as the leading United States player in the 1960s, he still competed in strong international tournaments into the 1970s.  In 1981, Reshevsky came to Albany to conduct a simultaneous exhibition at Albany Law School, losing only one game to your correspondent (who was fortunate enough to take advantage of a rare blunder).

In the 1960s, the world famous cellist Gregor Piatigorsky sponsored two international chess tournaments in California. The second Piatigorsky Cup, held in 1966, was one of the strongest and best tournaments of the decade, and was won by Boris Spassky, half a point ahead of Bobby Fischer, and 2 1⁄2 points ahead of then-world champion Tigran Petrosian and Reshevsky.

At 55, Reshevsky could still play!

Can you spot the winning combination in his game against the Dutch Grandmaster Donner?

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