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13th Monarch Assurance Isle of Man International
25 Sept - 3 Oct 2004

Last updated: Saturday, October 9, 2004 10:06 AM
 
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Round 4 - 28 September 2004 - "Manx Tails..."

 

Dennis Hemsley in the form of a catProof that Dennis Hemsley has no tail
Photo: (left) Dennis Hemsley turned into a cat and (right) side view of 'Dennis' to prove that he has no tail

John Saunders reports: Those of you not familiar with the Isle of Man may not know that this is the last place on earth that is still controlled by supernatural beings. For instance, on the annual coach trip round the island (which is scheduled for Thursday morning), if you make the terrible mistake of not saying "good morning, fairies" when the coach goes over Fairy Bridge, then you are absolutely 100% certain of losing your game in the afternoon. I have cast-iron proof of this which I am happy to send you (please send a £100 cheque to cover postage and packing, etc) and I am sure not even Edward Winter would quibble with it.

Today we present to you sensational evidence that magic still rules in Manxland. I could have sold this report for a huge fee to the Sunday Sport (as a follow-up to my exclusive about Alekhine playing chess with Elvis Presley in a London bus on the dark side of the moon) but I decided to run it here. We already knew that Dennis "Mr Monarch" Hemsley could walk on water, but had thought it to be only in the metaphysical sense of that phrase. What we didn't know is that he has magical powers to rival Gandalf (come to think of it, he does look a bit like the wizard in Lord of the Rings, but without the beard). In the photos above I am able to show you conclusive evidence that Dennis Hemsley can, at will, transform himself into a black Manx cat.

Not convinced? "Aha", I hear you say - "how do we KNOW that it is a Manx cat that Dennis has turned himself into? You are only showing him from the front, and for all we know he has a tail at the back and has turned himself into a completely ordinary cat." Well, I anticipated your scepticism and have put up the second photograph, which demonstrates conclusively that Dennis Hemsley, in cat form, has no tail. By an astonishing Jim Plaskett-style coincidence, Dennis Hemsley in human form also has no tail. The whole case is watertight. What possible further proof could you want?

This part of the report © 2004 Sunday Sport. No animals or tournament organisers were harmed
in any way in the making of this photo-report. Now back to the chess...

Viktor Korchnoi, leader of the tournamentOur black cat story has further significance for Round Four. Black ruled the roost against White to a very marked degree in this round especially on the higher boards. At dinner I suggested to Stewart Reuben that there was a flaw in his new Hastings Format. Perhaps, instead of giving Black an extra half an hour thinking time, I suggested he should give it to White. He didn't seem convinced.

The top three boards were drawn in 18, 17 and 16 moves, but one of the seven leaders was in fighting mood. Guess which one? Right first time - Viktor Korchnoi. The Latvian IM Berzinsh seemed to be doing OK against him until he made a mistake on move 31. Korchnoi latched onto it right away and ground out the win. Incidentally, I asked Viktor if he had visited the Isle of Man before (although I had already guessed the answer). He smiled and said that, no, he had never visited any of the islands around Britain before. Perhaps that was a hint to the Jersey and Guernsey organisers that he might enjoy a trip to their congresses as well. And it would be nice if the Isle of Lewis had a follow-up tournament after their successful tournament of a few years ago. Viktor has played on the mainland many times, of course. For instance, he was joint winner of the 1955/6 Hastings Premier - nearly 50 years ago.

 

Berzinsh,R (2455) - Korchnoi,V (2568) [B18]
Monarch Assurance Isle of Man Port Erin IOM (4.4), 28.09.2004

1 e4 c6 2 d4 d5 3 Nc3 dxe4 4 Nxe4 Bf5 5 Nc5 b6 6 Nb3 Nf6 7 Nf3 e6 8 g3 a5 [8 ..Bd6 was played in Shirov-Anand, Dortmund 1998] 9 Bg2 a4 10 Nbd2 a3 [Logical. The rather insipid 10 ..Be7 was played in Schneider-Pomar, Malta 1980.] 11 0-0 axb2 12 Bxb2 Ba3 13 Qc1 Bxb2 14 Qxb2 0-0 (Black has equalised) 15 Ne5 Ra4 16 c4 [With hindsight 16 c3 might have been more solid] 16 ..c5 17 Nb3 Qc7 18 Qe2 Nbd7 19 Rfd1 Bg6 (Black's game is geared up to maintaining pressure against c4) 20 Nxd7 Nxd7 21 Rac1 Nf6 (Giving up on the idea of pressurising the c4 pawn) 22 h3 h6 23 dxc5 bxc5 24 Rd2 Rc8 25 Qe3 Kh7 26 Bf3 Qa7 27 Bg2 Kh8 28 Bf3 (White has run out of constructive ideas, but his position remains fundamentally sound) 28 ..Rxa2 29 Rxa2 Qxa2 30 Nxc5 Qb2








31 Na4? [White gets into trouble after this. 31 Nb7 is roughly equal, though Korchnoi would no doubt continue to play for a win.] 31 ..Qb4 32 Nb6 Rc5! (Wins a pawn) 33 Na4 Rxc4 34 Rxc4 Qxc4 (The rook exchange was forced. Though there are only pawns on one side of the board, the absence of rooks make the likelihood of a Black win rather stronger.) 35 Nc3 Bd3 36 Ne2 Be4 37 Bxe4 Nxe4 38 Nd4 Qd5 39 Nf3 f6 40 Qd4? Ng5! (Forcing a complete exchange of the remaining pieces - unless White is prepared to put up with the loss of a second pawn) 41 Qxd5 exd5 42 Nh4 [42 Nxg5 hxg5 is a simple winning king and pawn ending] 42 ..Nxh3+ 43 Kg2 Ng5 44 f4 Ne4 45 Ng6+ Kh7 46 f5 h5 47 Kf3 [47 Nf4 Kh6 48 Nxd5 Kg5 49 Ne3 Nd6 regains the pawn] 47 ..Nd6 48 Kf4 d4 49 Ne7 d3 0-1 [50 Ke3 Kh6 51 Kxd3 Kg5 wins]

The game of the round was Agrest vs Williams. "How did your game go, Simon?" I asked the young English IM. "Well, I played the Dutch, got an attack going, a couple of sacs - and that was it!". This was like a footballer's answer at the end of a game - "I got the ball, and I put it in the back of the net" - but it summarises what happened admirably. Simon thus claimed his second 2600+ GM scalp of the tournament. He's in hot form at present. Simon Williams

Agrest,E (2602) - Williams,S (2427) [A85]
Monarch Assurance Isle of Man Port Erin IOM (4.12), 28.09.2004

1 d4 e6 2 c4 f5 3 Nc3 Nf6 4 Qc2 Bb4 5 e3 b6 6 Bd3 Bb7 7 f3 c5 8 a3 Bxc3+ 9 Qxc3 Nh5!? [9 ..0-0 is the usual move here, but Simon wants to start harassing Black's kingside] 10 Nh3 Qh4+ 11 Nf2 d6 12 dxc5 bxc5 13 b4 Nd7 14 Be2 [14 g3 Qe7 15 Be2 Ne5 leaves White with a compromised pawn structure on the kingside] 14 ..0-0 15 0-0 (This looks safe enough and Fritz 8 recommends it as the best move. But Black soon gets a huge attack going) 15 ..Rf6! (It couldn't be more obvious what Black has in mind but it is not so obvious what White can do about it) 16 Nh3 [16 Nd3 or 16 Qe1 are probably better plans] 16 ..Rg6 17 Nf4 [17 Nf2? loses to 17 ..Ng3! 18 Re1 (18 hxg3 Qxg3 19 Ng4 fxg4 20 e4 Rf8 wins) 18 ..Nxe2+ 19 Rxe2 Bxf3 etc; 17 Kh1!? Rxg2!? 18 Kxg2 Qg4+ 19 Kh1 Qxh3 20 Qe1 was one possibility that might be relatively better than the game] 17 ..Rh6 18 Nh3 Rg6 19 Nf4 Nxf4! (The second time round, Black finds the right move) 20 exf4 Rh6 21 h3 Rg6 22 Kh1 Qg3 23 Rg1 Rh6 24 Rd1 (The rook has to move otherwise Rxh3+ is followed by Qxh3 mate.) 24 ..Nf6 25 Qe1?








[25 Bb2! is best when White has some defenses to some of the more obvious winning tries, e.g. 25 ..Nh5 26 Bc1! Qf2 27 Bf1 Ng3+ 28 Kh2 Rg6 29 Qe1 etc] 25 ..Rxh3+! 26 gxh3 Qxh3+ 27 Kg1 Ng4! 28 Qf2 (An unfortunate necessity) 28 ..Nxf2 29 Kxf2 e5 30 Rg1 Qh4+ 31 Kf1 g6 32 fxe5 Qh3+ 33 Kf2 Qh2+ 34 Rg2 Qxe5 35 Ra2 Re8 36 Rc2 Bxf3! 0-1 [Very pretty. 37 Kxf3 (37 Bxf3 Qe1#) 37 ..Qe4+ wins the rook]

Andrew Greet bounced back with another win against a strong player. He played a neat tactical sequence to gain the advantage against the German IM Holzke. Clearly his performance at Scarborough was not a flash in the pan.

Holzke,F (2492) - Greet,A (2310) [B38]
Monarch Assurance Isle of Man Port Erin IOM (4.18), 28.09.2004

1 e4 c5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 d4 cxd4 4 Nxd4 g6 5 c4 Bg7 6 Be3 Nf6 7 Nc3 0-0 8 Be2 d6 9 0-0 Bd7 10 Qd2 Nxd4 11 Bxd4 Bc6 12 f3 a5 13 b3 Nd7 14 Be3 Nc5 15 Rab1 Qb6 16 Rfc1 Rfc8 17 a3?








17 ..Nxb3! (A very strong move, though not original.) 18 Bxb6 Nxd2 19 Rb2 (It looks like the end of the line for the knight, but Black has a clever way to emerge with extra material) 19 ..Nxc4! 20 Bxc4 Bd7 21 Nd1 [21 Bd5 Rxc3 22 Rxc3 Bxc3 23 Rb3 Rc8 24 Bxb7 Be6 25 Rb5 Rc4 worked out well for Black in Servat-Andres Mendez, Rosario 1996] 21 ..Bxb2 22 Nxb2 Be6 [22 ..Rc6 23 Be3 b5 is Karsten Mueller's suggestion in this line. It is good for Black] 23 Be3? [23 Rc3 is a bit better though after 23 ..Rc6 24 Bd4 Rac8 25 Bxe6 Rxc3 26 Bxc8 Rxc8 it also looks good for Black.] 23 ..Bxc4 24 Nxc4 [24 Rxc4 b5! is very strong for Black] 24 ..Ra6 25 Nb2 (Forced) 25 ..Rxc1+ 26 Bxc1 Rc6 27 Bh6 f6 [27 ..b5!? may be more to the point but Black now finds a forcing sequence anyway] 28 a4 Rc2 29 Nd1 Rc4 30 Nb2 Rb4 31 Bc1 b5 32 axb5 a4! 33 Kf2 a3 34 Nd3 Rb3 [34 ..a2 35 Nxb4 a1Q is another way of winning] 35 Bxa3 Rxd3 0-1

Florian Handke produced the best tactical finish of the round so far.

Handke,F (2461) - Ramaswamy,A (2299)
Monarch Assurance Isle of Man Port Erin IOM (4.22), 28.09.2004








19 ..g6? (A blunder) 20 Qh5! 1-0 (Mate follows)

IMPORTANT CORRECTION: the game Korchnoi-Wells from Rd 3 was given incorrectly previously. Apologies for that. We now have the correct score, as dictated by Viktor himself. I showed him the position on the ChessBase screen and he spotted the problem in the notation straightaway. On move 36 Black played Qb6 (not Qb8), and on move 37 Black played Kh6 (not Kh8). Andy Smith and I slaved over the score of that game for some time when we were inputting it. The problem was that Korchnoi's scoresheet was utterly illegible and Peter Wells' scoresheet, though perfectly legible for most of the game, gets a little hard to read when he is in time trouble. Anyway, it was a good excuse to have a chat with Viktor, who showed me a couple of tricks in that game. I've corrected the Rd 3 PGN download.

Round  4

Bd  WHITE                      Result  BLACK
  1 WELLS,Peter      2494 (2)   -   NAKAMURA,Hikaru  2601 (2)
  2 BAKLAN,Vladimir  2595 (2)   -   CHANDLER,Murray  2531 (2)
  3 GHAEM MAGHAMI,Eh 2552 (2)   -   KULAOTS,Kaido    2593 (2)
  4 BERZINSH,Roland  2455 (2)   0 - 1  KORCHNOI,Viktor  2568 (2)
  5 MILOV,Vadim      2683 (2)    -   SARAKAUSKAS,Gedi 2442 (2)
  6 MCNAB,Colin      2427 (2)   0 - 1  SMIRIN,Ilya      2671 (2)
  7 GRAFL,Florian    2411 (2)   0 - 1  MOISEENKO,Alexan 2640 (2)
  8 IORDACHESCU,Vior 2633 (2)    -   SKRIPCHENKO,Almi 2453 (2)
  9 PERT,Richard     2407 (2)   0 - 1  VOLKOV,Sergey    2625 (2)
 10 KOTRONIAS,Vassil 2608 (2)   1 - 0  RUOFAN,Li        2414 (2)

 11 GOTTSCHLICH,Cars 2382 (2)   0 - 1  ZHONG,Zhang      2603 (2)
 12 AGREST,Evgenij   2602 (2)   0 - 1  WILLIAMS,Simon K 2427 (2)
 13 ROGERS,Ian       2588 (2)    -   PEEK,Mrcel      2406 (2)
 14 ROWSON,Jonathan  2558 (2)   1 - 0  HOUSKA,Jovanka   2375 (2)
 15 ARMBRUSTER,Alexa 2351 (2)    -   KIRIAKOV,Petr    2555 (2)
 16 SPEELMAN,Jon     2555 (2)   1 - 0  BOSBOOM-LANCHAVA 2370 (2)
 17 PAVLOVIC,Milos   2498 (2)   1 - 0  COX,John         2314 (2)
 18 HOLZKE,Frank     2492 (2)   0 - 1  GREET,Andrew N   2310 (2)
 19 HOWELL,David W   2334 (2)    -   CONQUEST,Stuart  2488 (2)
 20 RAMESH,Ramachadr 2484 (2)   1 - 0  BIGG,Andrew J    2275 (2)

 21 ZAWADZKA,Jolanta 2272 (2)   0 - 1  SPRENGER,Jan Mic 2477 (2)
 22 HANDKE,Florian   2461 (2)   1 - 0  RAMASWAMY,Aarthi 2299 (2)
 23 KOLBUS,Dietmar   2303 (2)   0 - 1  SCHNEIDER,Dmitry 2454 (2)
 24 ALMOND,Richard J 2158 (1)  0 - 1  GALLAGHER,Joseph 2541 (1)
 25 ARAKHAMIA-GRANT, 2446 (1)  1 - 0  WALTON,Alan J    2208 (1)
 26 DUNN,Andrew      2192 (1)  0 - 1  JONKMAN,Harmen   2425 (1)
 27 MURTAGH,Dermot   1889 (1)  0 - 1  GORDON,Stephen   2338 (1)
 28 PLANT,Paul R     2107 (1)   -   AFEK,Yochanan    2325 (1)
 29 BANNINK,Bernard  2280 (1)  1 - 0  GOODGER,Martyn   2136 (1)
 30 RENDLE,Thomas    2258 (1)  1 - 0  TRUMAN,Richard G 2023 (1)

 31 HUTCHINSON,Paul  2216 (1)  0 - 1  ADAMS,Phil       2124 (1)
 32 VAN KEMENADE,Rud 2107 (1)   0 - 1  MANNION,Steve R. 2333 (1)
 33 NOORDHOEK,Henk   2095 (1)    -   ASHTON,Adam      2270 (1)
 34 HORTON,Justin    2091 (1)    -   GROFFEN,Hans     2244 (1)
 35 ALLEN,Keith      2241 (1)    -   PIMMINGSTORFER,C 2116 (1)
 36 MILLIGAN,Helen   2077 (1)    -   SPENCE,David     2236 (1)
 37 PYM,Thomas W     2059 (1)   0 - 1  SMITH,Andrew P   2205 (1)
 38 WEBSTER,Richard  2008 (1)   0 - 1  GRANT,Alan       2193 (1)
 39 TWITCHELL,Nevill 2003 (1)   1 - 0  HUTCHINSON,Norma 2176 (1)
 40 MCPHILLIPS,Karl  2172 (1)    -   HAGESAETHER,Arne 2101 (1)

 41 GORKA,Carl       1882 (1)   0 - 1  COLLIER,David O. 2168 (1)
 42 LUTTON,J Ezra    2134 (1)   1 - 0  FAIRBAIRN,Steve  2057 (1)
 43 FOX,Anthony      2123 (1)    -   SPANTON,Tim      2004 (1)
 44 BENNION,David A. 2052 ()   0 - 1  WERNER,Gert      2085 ()
 45 HENRICHSEN,Jens  2084 ()    -   DOSSETT,Christop 1886 ()
 46 MARKS,Ian        1910 ()    -   FRASER-MITCHELL, 2082 ()
 47 WAUGH,Jonathan C 1885 ()   1 - 0  CANNON,Richard   2060 ()
 48 NICHOLSON,John   1880 (0)   1 - 0  DE LAGONTRIE,Jea 1968 (0)
 49 PEMBERTON,Clive  1883 (0)   1 - 0  Bye 
British Chess Magazine Home Page: www.bcmchess.co.uk