Saturday, November 20, 2010

Club Member Andrew Wang Wins Elgin Tournament!

Our congratulations go out to NIU Mathematics Graduate Student, Andrew Wang (pictured below in action at an earlier DeKalb tournament). Andrew demolished the top-rated "Alpha" quad with a perfect 3.0 score. I caught his third round win, and it included one of the prettiest knight-for-pawn sacrifices you'll ever see. The decisive combination was a thing of beauty!

Andrew's knight takes pawn, and his young opponent captured back with his own knight, thinking he'd been given a gift. Andrew exchanges on, capturing that knight with a rook which is readily captured back by his opponent's rook. Did Andrew really just sack a knight and a rook for a measly pawn and a knight? Never fear, our intrepid math whiz maneuvers his queen to a back rank check leading to the rook recapture and a sweet fork where either a bishop or knight would have been next to fall. When his opponent went on the attack instead, Andrew finished him off with a stylish mating net. That, folks, is how chess is played!

(Allow a momentary digression: We then retreated to the skittles room to watch the Fighting Illini turn the purple and white various shades of black and blue at Wrigley Field. Obvious background: Andrew attended Northwestern while I matriculated downstate to the U of I. How can a mere mortal gain 300 yards rushing in a single football game? And it was all running in one direction!).

Elsewhere in the Elgin tournament, club member Cliff Adams managed a tie for fourth in his Delta section of 7 players. Frequent DeKalb-tournament attendee Gary Sargent grabbed a piece of second place prize money in that same section.

Bob Cairone of the McHenry Area Chess Club runs a terrific tournament, and I've learned a lot about TD'ing from him. Elgin tournaments are held the third Saturday of every month on the top floor of the Holiday Inn just off Route 31, north of I-90.  The next tournament there, December 18th, will feature Swiss pairings. Let's all come out and support this wonderful event so that it remains viable on a monthly basis!

Thanks, Bob, for all you do for chess in Northern Illinois, and congratulations again to Andrew!

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