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Juniors in NJ

JMB2010
Nov 6, 2012, 8:03 AM 7

There is a lot of junior talent in the southern-central part of NJ. Here I will mention just a few within a similar rating range.

Aravind Kumar:Current Rating-2032

Aravind is an incredible player. He seems to find a good defence to your attack minutes before you even realized you had an attack! Once his incredible sense of danger takes the play into an endgame, you have no chance there. He is also not afraid to play odd-looking moves. For example, he moved his king to h6 in the middlegame against GM Mikheil Kekelidze in the recent Boardwalk Open! I expect him to make master by June 2013.

Kimberly Ding:Current Rating-2052 For me, Kimberly has always been underrated by at least 50-200 points. She has great attacking skill but is also efficient in all other areas, including endgames. In our most recent game (although it was a while ago) she lost a pawn, but set the board on fire and slaughtered me in complications, accurately avoiding a perpetual check. It is probable that she will make master early next year.

Praveen Balakrishnan:Current Rating-2232 I believe Praveen is in 5th grade! That leads me to think-is he the youngest US master ever? (Can someone research and get back to me, did he beat Samuel Sevian's record?) He plays conservative openings, but is not afraid to get into tactical battles. What's next for him, maybe International Master???

Alice Dong:Current Rating-2016

In our recent boardwalk open game, I tried a speculative sacrifice in a gambit variation of the Ruy Lopez. She barely even seemed to think, making moves very quickly and landing me in a bad position. I had to find "only" moves to secure the draw. It seems incredible to be able to manouvere through such a complicated position so quickly and efficiently! She will certainly make master sometime in 2013.

Andy Chen:Current Rating-1924

I have only played him once, and a long time ago at that, but I have seen him in many tournaments before. He seems to have a great sense of humor and also seems to be grossly underrated. Maybe his true strength is 2100? He might get  there soon if he keeps playing the Marshall Attack (Go Andy! Frank Marshall is probably smiling down on you!)!

That is all for now. I had just finished this when I somehow lost all of my work, so I had to do it all again. Honorable mentions go to the Lim brothers. PS-If any of the players I mentioned in this article have a chess.com account, I'd like to know!


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