Monday, December 6, 2010

Thursday, December 2, 2010

CHESS GAME DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH: Thursday, December 2nd, 2010. FAB TIME!

Caruana pulls ahead! With a full point lead the question now becomes can he keep it going full steam over the course of the final two rounds?

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

CHESS GAME DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH: Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

CHESS GAME DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH: Tuesday, November 30th, 2010 The Fabulous Fabiano Curuana continues to impress all!

It was back during the World Open held in 2001 and I was in the grip of a serious chess fever... I not only played in the main event but I also played in several of the side events as well. It was during the 5th round of the WORLD OPEN TUESDAY ACTION that I got paired with a small boy with big glasses and a teddy bear on "board". I thought to myself - easy win. Well it wasn't! In fact I didn't win at all and was very lucky to draw. Back in 2001 this boy was rated 1788 before this event but post he was 1828 rated. What is his rating nowadays?

The fabulous Fabiano Curuana is now FIDE rated 2700 plus - which makes him a Super Grandmaster! While it would be intellectual dishonest of me to claim that I had drawn a Super Grandmaster I can in all honesty say that I played an all time great player way back when he was just starting off and before he later became a top notch chess competitor. Of course this story would sound even better if I had won that game way back when. At least to my ears!

For the cross table to this event please visit:

One of my big joys as a chess coach is working with youngsters... but when I look at children now I cannot help but to ask myself the following question "How good will this boy/girl be in a year? In two years? What is their chess potential?" These questions are ever in the back of my mind after having played in an event held on July 3rd, 2001. When I look at some of my students I know that some of them will make master - but it will take time, energy and effort. Will they be able to put forth their best effort? I know several of my students can - with one well on his way there now. (Tony Yim!)

I also look at ALL of my kids and know that they can at least become as good or skilled a player as me. But will I get the chance to help them achieve this? Will their Parents understand just how useful an educational tool Scholastic chess is and sign them up for chess tournaments? Do they have the time and inclination? Always such questions are in my mind... two of my star students that I work with right now I will make every effort to help them achieve as much as they can with my help. But once they do so it will be my hope that they continue on with another chess coach who can take them further should I not be up to the task. They both have that much potential. A tier down I have several more students who too will make that jump but first they must cross the 1300 ASCF barrier and that can be stumbling block for some Scholastic players. But not if I am their coach - we'll cross it sooner than later!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Monday, November 22, 2010

CHESS GAME DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH: Monday, November 22nd, 2010

Some interesting chess has been played while I was focused on the "BEST OF PHOENIX" - got time to look at one of those games, right now? : ) Then in that case CHESS STARTS NOW!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

CHESS GAME DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH: Thursday, November 18th, 2010

I only got to play in a few of John Hillery's events starting this year... as it would turn out I would not get any further opportunities to see him at any future events. He would pass away on September 20th, 2010 - only a short time after I had last seen him at the final tournament that he would direct - The SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA OPEN held on September 6th.

Here now is a game I decided to annotate for your enjoyment in honor of John Hillery. A big win against a super strong opponent. A well played game with some imaginative play by John.

It is only because of the hard work of people like John that there are any events - at all - for the rest of us to go enjoy our selves at. A real lover of chess - like John was - can do it all. Play, run events and so on. He even waded into the muck of United States Chess Federation (USCF) politics and try to clean things up - that takes a particularly brave person! His hard work on behalf of all of us on various committees also influenced the very way that you can play chess at any USCF event that you attend. Rules are rules! Thank you for all you did in life John Hillery, RIP.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

CHESS GAME DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH: Wednesday, November 17th, 2010

Some nice events going on - right now in Israel the 2010 Israeli Championship is taking place which is producing some nice games. Enjoy today's post - whenever you read it!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

CHESS GAME DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH: Tuesday, November 16th, 2010

Hello everyone!

Here is my most recent TUESDAY NIGHT MONTHLY STANDARD OPEN game - as played every TUESDAY at the CHESS EMPORIUM in PHOENIX ARIZONA. I lost this one - my opponent is the provisionally rated 2700 rated Nam Nguyen. This is obviously a mistake but it will be very high once the USCF - United States Chess Federation - corrects this anomaly - maybe higher than 2400? Who knows! Nam did beat IM Dionisio Aldama in a G30 Friday Night action game down at the Chess Emporium and it is true has has won all of his games but for a single one - a draw with coach Kevin.

Today's game with me could have very well been his first loss - but for my mistakes! Both of us had wins in this game at various times throughout the game - he just had the final "won" is all! I enjoyed my game with Nam - except for all of his muttering under his breath during our game! : ) Enjoy this game - for what it is worth!

Monday, November 15, 2010




One of many fun and exciting games played at our meeting on Wednesday the 10th of November, 2010. Enjoy! - Chess Coach Sean Tobin.

CHESS GAME DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH: Monday, November 15th, 2010.

One of the biggest factors that can decide the outcome of a chess game is just how willing - and of course by extension for just how long you are willing - to sit opposite your opponent with the determination to play the game out for a win. No matter how little material remains on the board. You have true fighting spirit when you try to out maneuver your opponent for the entire game - trying to wear them down by the force of your efforts. This was how Bobby Fischer used to play and I believe this is the very reason why Super Grandmaster Michael Adams won the following game.

For the majority of his game - as Black - versus the Grandmaster Alexandre Dgebuadze Michael Adams seemed to not show any hint of aggression. By Alexandre's selection of opening and by the way he conducted the white pieces it would seem to be a safe bet that all he hoped for was a draw against the World famous English GM. He set his sites far too low as to achieve a draw against a GM you must fight them every step of the way. In the opening, in the middlegame and finally in the Endgame. No where is it easier to make a mistake than in the endgame as then the true level of control or mastery over the pieces will come to the fore. And if your game is a serious chess game you will be tired from having grappled with your opponent for the hours leading up to the grand finale. Enjoy this patient and consistent performance by English Grandmaster Michael Adams*.

* This game can be considered a good guide on the reasoning behind the basic opening moves for my students - or any student of the game that should care to follow along with my commentary while playing the moves over in the Chess Flash player. The big three hold true for players of all skill levers - Control the center, develop your pieces and Keep your King safe!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

CHESS GAME DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH: Sunday, November 14th, 2010.

Will the real Boris Gelfand step up please!

Boris has been a top ten or twenty club member for quite a while now... and in today's game against Shakhriyar Mamedyarov from round 9 of the Tal Memorial you are going to find out why! One of the things that makes the difference between the very top players and the rest of us is just how well they can defend against an opponent's attack. Today Boris had to defend but knew well in advance that his opponent's attack lacked fangs!

Friday, November 12, 2010

CHESS GAME DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH: Friday, November 12th, 2010.

The 2010 TAL MEMORIAL is producing some wonderful chess - despite the high draw percentage. With the end of the event looming close first place is still up for grabs. Fortune favors the bold and attacking chess wins fans - despite the official result!

Make it a great weekend everyone! Of course if you have five minutes on Saturday and then again on Sunday you will find that I am going to continue these postings over the weekend as well - so stay tuned! - Chess Coach Sean Tobin.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


If I may be so bold as to offer up one of my own games for this edition of "CHESS GAME DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH!"... having played this game, having spent time playing this game and the way in which I won it has made me an extremely happy chess player! I hope you enjoy playing over this game even one tenth as much as I enjoyed playing it!! Without further ado - here is my own most recent "Chess Diamond" in the rough!