Jim West Talks Chess: Corner Stalemates

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Here is the conclusion to my game as White against Noah Siegel [USCF 2294] from the USATE 2005.







Black has just played 69...Nf3. I played my only legal move 70.gxf3 when 70...Kf2 forced my resignation.

Now take a look at my game as Black against Grant Oen [USCF 1663] from the ICA Fall 2009 Open.







I have just played 51...h4. The correct way for White to draw is 52.gxh4 [52.Kh2 also draws] g3 53.h5 e2 54.h6 e1=Q+ 55.Rxe1 Kxe1 56.h7 Bxh7.

White made the mistake of sacrificing his rook too soon by 52.Rxe3 Kxe3 53.gxh4 when 53...Ke2 should win for Black. Instead my 53...g3 threw away the victory.

Eventually we reached these positions, after 63...Bf3 and 67...Bh3 respectively.













 Unlike the position with the black knight on f3, White is not obligated to capture the bishop on f3 or h3 because the g1 square is still available to his king.

I was fortunate that my opponent overstepped the time limit a few moves later.