Pandolfini's Class Chess Tournament

Pandolfini's Class Chess Tournament

| 21 | Scholastics

Professor: Welcome, class. I hope you've all survived the first four rounds of the class tournament.

Zephyr: Wei certainly has.

Lucian: Yeah, he's in first.

Professor: Yes he is, and he's played fairly well.

Thomas: But there still are three rounds left.

Hale: Sure, anything can happen.

Ryan: Just like AVRO 1938.

Zephyr: Is that what it's like? I knew it was like something.

Rachel: What's the plan for today, Professor?

Professor: I thought we'd review some of the highlights.

Zephyr: Highlights? I didn't think there were any.

Lucian: Well, not from you.

Zephyr: So far.

Professor: Anyhow, I thought the key battle of the first round was Idris vs. Wei.

Idris: At one point I thought I was winning.

Rachel: I thought you were, too.

Wei: I think I had the advantage most of the way.

Question 1: How can Black force an immediate win?

Hale: I have question, Idris. How come you resigned so quickly.

Idris: That's easy. I saw the entire line, right down to mate.


Thomas: It was a pretty nice king hunt. 

Zephyr: Ah, the drawing master likes it.

Rachel: So he drew four games. So what?

Zephyr: So can I see the next position please?

Professor: Sure. It comes from Hale vs. Lucian in the second round.

Lucian: Do you have to show that? I played terribly.

Professor: It was kind of messy. But the conclusion was nice.

Question 2: What is White's quickest winning idea?

Zephyr: How does it feel to be mated, Lucian?

Lucian: Why don't you tell me, especially after we face each other in the last round?

Rachel: When did you get the mating idea, Hale?

Hale: Actually, I had it in mind for quite awhile.

Ryan: It reminded me of a game you had earlier in the year.

Hale: Yeah, it reminded me of that game, too.

Zephyr: Are we done yet?

Professor: No, we're not. Let's take a look at another Lucian game.

Lucian:  I hope not my third round game against Idris.

Professor: That's the one. It had some interesting points.

Lucian: If you say so, Professor.

Question 3: What is White's best move?

Lucian: I had just played queen to f8. 

Idris: You probably expected me to trade queens.

Lucian: Uh huh.

Lucian: Can we move to the fourth round, Professor?

Professor: Why not? 

Rachel: What game, Professor?

Professor: I thought we'd examine your game against Wei.

Rachel: Yeah, I lost as Black.

Wei: I had a strong attack.

Rachel: I thought I could hold. I miscalculated.

Wei: You have nothing to be ashamed of.

Zephyr: Do I have to listen to this?

Lucian: I've never known you to listen to anything. Why start now?

Professor: Let's take a look at the last few moves of that game.

Question 4: What is White's quickest winning idea?

Rachel: I missed your winning idea completely.

Wei: I saw it earlier. I thought it might be there. And it was.

Zephyr: How nice for you, to have a prevision like that.

Professor: Zephyr, be nice.

Zephyr: Okay. It's only a movie. I mean, it's only a chess game.

Professor: Whatever you mean, that brings us to our final position.

Ryan: What's that, Professor?

Professor: Idris vs. Ryan, round 4.

Question 5: What is the simplest way for Black to force a draw?

Ryan: Actually, I was exhausted and just happy to come away with the half point.

Idris: I was tired, too. I needed a break.

Professor: I think we can all use a break. We have three more rounds this weekend.

Zephyr: Is that a threat?

Lucian: Oh Zephyr, you wouldn't know a threat if you saw one.

Zephyr: We'll see. Don't forget. We face each other in the last round.

Lucian: I haven't forgotten. I wish I could.

Answers below -- Try to solve NM Pandolfini's puzzles first!

Answer 1: Black's king hunt ends in mate after 13 moves!

Answer 2: It's over in four moves.

Answer 3: White wins with the direct 1. Rxf7!, letting his queen hang.

Answer 4: White mates in five moves.

Answer 5: Black reduces to a positional draw.

Take Note

The standings so far: 

Wei has 3.5 points is in 1st;

Ryan has 3 points and is 2nd;

Hale has 2.5 points and is in 3rd;

Idris and Thomas are 2-2, tied for 4th and 5th;

Rachel has 1.5 points and is 6th;

Lucian has 1 point and is 7th;

Zephyr has a draw and is in last.

Here's a look at the tournament crosstable:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
1 Idris * 1/2 1 1/2 0
2 Thomas 1/2 * 1/2 1/2 1/2
3 Lucian 0 1/2 * 1/2 0
4 Ryan 1/2 * 1/2 1 1
5 Zephyr 1/2 * 0 0 0
6 Rachel 1/2 0 1 * 0
7 Hale 1/2 1 0 1 *
8 Wei 1 1/2 1 1 *


More from NM brucepandolfini
Do Chess Players Cheat?

Do Chess Players Cheat?

Opening Or Endgame? You Decide

Opening Or Endgame? You Decide