Friday, September 19, 2008

NJ Knockouts Beat the Boston Blitz

Benjamin - Christiansen
White to play.

The New Jersey Knockouts had good luck in their match against the Boston Blitz in Round Four of US Chess League action on Wednesday night, September 17, 2008, winning 3-1. I have posted the games with annotations online.  

On Board One against New Jersey's Joel Benjamin, GM Larry Christiansen blundered a piece on move 8 (see diagram above) in a tricky line of the c3-Sicilian. On Board Two, Boston's Denys Shmelov rejected two draws to press an edge against Dean Ippolito, but then made a costly error that handed Black a dangerous initiative that Ippolito used to win the game. And Charles Riordan lost a messy game against NJ Champ Mac Molner on Board Three. The only clean win of the night was Marc Esserman's brilliant handling of the Smith-Morra Gambit against Jason Lian on Board Four -- a game that should warm the hearts of all gambiteers (no matter if they also feel loyalties to New Jersey!) It was a messy win, and less lopsided than the 3-1 score would indicate.  But a win is a win, especially against the powerful Boston Blitz.

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