Monday, July 27, 2015

Pairings for Round 1. 2015 SPF Girls Invitational


2015 SPFGI Bughouse Championship
Sunday, July 26, 2015

1st Place
ARIZONA: Aiya Canco (AZ) & Rachael Eng (AZ), 10-0

2nd Place
CHOCOLATE: Danitza Vasquez (Puerto Rico) & Serafina Show (CA), 7-3
MINIONS: Diamond Abdus-Shakoor (OH) & Lilia Poteat (NY), 7-3
NOBODY: Thalia Cervantes (MO) & Ashley Tapp (Canada), 7-3
CASSANDREA: Andrea Botez (Canada) & Cassie Parent (IL), 7-3

3rd Place
CIA: Ella Papanek (NY) & Yassi Eshani ((NY), 6-4
NOTHING: Sasha Konovalenko ((MI) & Chloe Wong (WI), 6-4
MAGIC: Nastassja Matus (MN) & Iris Zhou (MO), 6-4
HAJIBARBIS: Kiani Hajibarbi (KS) and Shahrzad (KS), 6-4
DIAMONDS: Neha Dias (SC) & Peishanika Arnold (IN), 6-4
CV: Veronika Zilajeva (OK) & Charity Farell (OK), 6-4

4th Place
TEX MEX: Anastacia Lopez (Mexico) & Ioana Murgulet (TX), 5-5
CARSONS: Sarah Faith Carson (IA) & Charity Carson (IA), 5-5
CALIFORNIA: Evelyn Chen (GA) & Trina Chatterjee (CA), 5-5

6th Place
BUBBLES: Willow Letard (NM) & Maggie Luo (VA), 4-6
OREGON: Elena Allen (OR) & Thais Castillo Morales (Costa Rica), 4-6
MUSTANGS: Allyson Wong (CA) & Annapoorni Meiyappan (CA), 4-6
LUCKY: Skyler Hsu (MD) & Emma Cheng (OH), 4-6
MARVEL: Shayna Provine (IL) & Giselle Kimball (NV), 4-6
CHAMPIONS: Sarvagna Velidanda (AL) & Meghana Kancharla (NH), 4-6

7th Place
PEPPERMINT: Beatrice Low (CT) & Rui Yang Yan (CA), 3-7

8th Place
438ERS: Katie Thomas (KY) & Karen Salzgeber (MS), 2-8
SPARK: Emily Hogue (UT) & Aine Lima (Brazil), 2-8

9th Place
ELEPHANT-MONKEYS: Temi Aderogba (ID) & Triya Venkataraja (NC), 0-10

Monday, July 20, 2015

2015 Bluegrass State Games - Chess

Medal Winners – 2015 Bluegrass State Games
Big Sandy Community & Technical College
Mayo Campus, Paintsville, KY
July 18, 2015

Game in 45 minutes per player with 5 second delay


Gold – Christopher Coleman
Silver (tie) – Tyler Mainous & Shane Ward
Bronze – John Biliter & Larry Greer

Christopher Coleman & Shane Ward during their crucial final round game

Under 1400

Gold – Adam Wheeler
Silver (tie) – Steve Phillips & Allen Maddix
Bronze – Jackie Ward & Paul Childers

Kindergarten through 5th Grade

Gold – Kyle Wheeler

6th through 8th Grade

Gold – Linden Wheeler

High School

Gold – Sean Howard

Action Game in 10 minutes

Gold (tie) – Taylor Mainous & Sean Howard
Silver (tie) – Christopher Coleman, Shane Ward & Adam Wheeler


Jason Kretzer, Ricky Hamilton, Katerina Nemcova & Natasha Niro


East Kentucky Chess Club, Pikeville, KY

Adam Wheeler & John Biliter

Special Thanks

Mike Mackenzie & John Biliter

Respectfully submitted,
Frank A. Niro, Commissioner

U.S. Chess Federation rated tournament cross tables for this event

Tournament directors Jason Kretzer & Frank Niro

Thursday, March 5, 2015

12th Annual SPFGI details announced

Rules & Conditions for the 12th Annual Susan Polgar Foundation Girls' Invitational
(Over $200K in prizes and scholarships)
July 25 (arrival day) – July 30, 2015 at Webster University (St. Louis, Missouri)

The Annual SPF Girls' Invitational, in its 12th year, is the most prestigious All-Girls event in the United States. It is also the first All-Girls event approved and sanctioned by the USCF back in 2003. It is an invitational event, and will once again be held at Webster University (St. Louis, Missouri).

Each state, as well as each country in the American Continent (South, Central, and North America) is allowed to nominate one representative. In addition, automatic qualifying spots will be awarded to the reigning winners in each section of the annual Susan Polgar Foundation National Open for Girls and the Susan Polgar Foundation World Open for Girls.

Webster University will provide complimentary room and meal accommodation on campus for all qualifiers!

• There will be an intense training session with Susan Polgar and members of the SPICE team, followed by a 6 round (g/90+30) FIDE rated championship tournament.
• The traditional Blitz, Puzzle Solving, Bughouse events will stay the same as in previous years.
• There will be many chess prizes awarded, as well as scholarships to Webster University.

Official representatives should be nominated by June 8, 2015. Official representative alternates may be substituted no later than July 6, 2015. (Susan Polgar and/or the Polgar Committee may allow the host state to enter an additional qualified player.) Susan Polgar and/or the Polgar Committee may allow exceptions to the June 8 entry/alternate deadline. Should the state affiliate fail to respond to the notice for this tournament, Susan Polgar and/or the Polgar Committee may determine the candidate from that state or country.

Players must have been enrolled in a school (up to 12th grade) located in the state or country they represent, also of the year in which the tournament is held. Home-schooled students who are 19 or under on the year in which the event is held or students who have never attended traditional college on a full time basis prior to July 1 of the year in which the tournament is held, are eligible to represent the state or country in which they reside.

Exception: If a player graduates from high school early and is already attending college, she may still represent her state if nominated. This is the decision of each state affiliate.

VERY IMPORTANT NOTE: The participants of the Susan Polgar Girl’s Invitational DO NOT have to be high school students. Any qualifier who is 19 or under (on the year in which the tournament is held) is eligible!

Special invitation for this year: All past participants of the SPNI and SPFGI (Susan Polgar National Invitational/Susan Polgar Foundation Girls’ Invitational 2004-2014) are invited to participate in the 2015 SPFGI. The idea is to have the past participants learn my method of training so they can go back home and share their knowledge with the younger players. However, registration MUST be made ASAP since space is limited. There will be mutual training sessions for all, however separate section & prizes for alumni participants over the age of 20.

Players are required to furnish the organizer an emergency phone number and the e-mail address of a parent/guardian.

There is no entry fee to participate in the 2015 SPFGI; however, players are responsible for their own travel.

For alumni participants, wild card/special invites, coaches, parents, or other family members, inexpensive accommodations are available for housing and dining on Webster’s campus. Please note that all reservations and registrations MUST be made (and accommodation expenses prepaid) no later than June 15, 2015.

Prizes: Trophies / plaques will be awarded to the winners of the Susan Polgar Foundation Girl’s Invitational Puzzle Solving, Blitz, Bughouse and the SPFGI Championship. Co-champions are recognized in the case of a tie, with each champion receiving a Champion’s Plaque or Trophy.

The Champion (or Co-Champions) of the main event will automatically be invited to defend her/their title (must meet age requirement).

Champion: Webster University scholarship* (full tuition and fees approximately $24,000 + per year x 4 years) Champion's Cup. (In case of a tie, a playoff will used to determine the level of scholarships)

2nd place: Webster University scholarship (approximately $14,000 + per year x 4 years)

3rd place: Webster University scholarship (approximately $12,000 + per year x 4 years)

Additional prizes this year!

Top under 16: $1,000 scholarship to help defray expenses to the 2015 World Youth (if participating**)

Top under 14: $1,000 scholarship to help defray expenses to the 2015 World Youth (if participating**)

Top under 12: $1,000 scholarship to help defray expenses to the 2015 World Youth (if participating**)

Top under 10: $1,000 scholarship to help defray expenses to the 2015 World Youth (if participating**)

* The scholarships to Webster University must be exercised no later than Fall of 2018, and are not transferable. In addition, these scholarships cannot be combined with other academic scholarships, or stacked. If players won scholarships in past events, they can choose to exercise the highest one.

** After flight ticket has been purchased, a $1,000 reimbursement check will be sent to the winners.

The Polgar Committee’s goal is to have all 50 states (including two representatives for California, two for Texas, and two for Missouri), the District of Columbia, as well as each country in the American Continent (South, Central, and North America) represented. We strongly encourage each state and the District of Columbia affiliate to hold a scholastic championship tournament to determine each state’s champion and representative. Failing this, rating criteria may be acceptable. A scholastic girls’ champion or the highest rated girls’ scholastic player in a state who has no state affiliate of the USCF should contact the Polgar Committee as soon as possible.

Susan Polgar and/or the Polgar Committee and its members may elect to award a limited number of wild cards each year for the Susan Polgar Girl’s Invitational.

Special qualifying events: The Polgar Committee will award automatic qualifying spots to the reigning winners in each section of the annual Susan Polgar Foundation National Open for Girls and the Susan Polgar Foundation World Open for Girls.

The SPFGI Chairperson is Martha Underwood (AZ).

NOTICE TO ALL STATE OFFICIALS: Please send the nomination from your state to the Polgar Committee (

Contact info: Polgar Committee (

The Susan Polgar Foundation can be contacted at 806-281-7424 or through

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Local Chess Calendar

Here is a list of the upcoming chess tournaments in the local vicinity during the next several months. The events that I am planning to play in are in bold. Thanks to Robert Chenault of Cincinnati as well as the Kentucky Chess Association for the source information.

FEB. 27 - (Friday/Columbus) 3 Rounds - G/45;d5 -

Next Cincy Tornado
Saturday, Feb. 28th Cincy Tornado Chess Tournament "Pawn Gambits"
New!! 2 Sections. OPEN SECTION and Under 1600
Last Saturday of the month...every month.

FEB. 28 - (Saturday/Columbus) Chess-N-Chili - all Pre-Registered players get a FREE bowl of Chili!!!

MAR. 1 Sunday Blitz Weekly & Chess at Cancun's "casual play and chess matches"
- 1:00pm blitz tournament; $20EF -

MAR. 6 - Friday Nite Quick/DCC - 7:30pm -

MAR. 7 - Arnold Schwarzenegger Scholastic Chess Classic -

MAR. 7 - (Saturday) Sycamore High School - 7400 Cornell Rd. Montgomery, OH 45242

MAR. 7 - (Saturday) Lexington 1st Saturday G/60 -

MAR. 8 Sunday Blitz Weekly & Chess at Cancun's "casual play and chess matches"
- 1:00pm blitz tournament; $20EF -

MAR. 13 - Friday Nite Quick/DCC - 7:30pm -

MAR. 13-15 OR 14-15 19th annual Mid-America Open
5SS, 40/110, SD/30 d10 (2-day option, rds. 1-2 G/60 d10). Crowne Plaza Hotel St. Louis-Clayton, 7750 Carondelet Ave., St. Louis, MO 63105 (I-64 W/US 40-W Exit 32B, 1.2 miles north on Hanley Rd). $$ 20,000 GUARANTEED PRIZE FUND. In 7 sections: Open: $2000-1000-500-300, clear winner or 1st on tiebreak $100 bonus, top U2300/Unr $800-400. Under 2100: $1400-700-400-200. Under 1900: $1400-700-400-200. Under 1700: $1400-700-400-200. Under 1500: $1200-600-300-200. Under 1300: $1000-500-300-200. Under 1000: $500-300-200-100, plaques to first 3, top U800, U600, Unrated Prize limits: Unrated may not win over $200 in U1000, $400 U1300, $600 U1500, or $800 U1700. Mixed doubles bonus prizes: best male/female 2-player “team” combined score among all sections: $800-400-200. Team average must be under 2200; teammates may play in different sections; teams must register at site (no extra fee) before 2 pm 3/14; teammate pairings avoided but possible. Top 6 sections EF: $109 online at by 3/11, $115 phoned to 406-896-2038 by 3/9 (entry only, no questions), 3-day $113.50, 2-day $112.50 mailed by 3/4, $130 online until 2 hours before game or at site. GMs free; $90 deducted from prize. U1000 Section EF: all $50 less than above. Online EF $3 less to MCA members. No checks at site, credit cards OK. Unofficial ratings usually used if otherwise unrated. Special 1 yr USCF dues with magazine if paid with entry: Online at, Adult $30, Young Adult $20, Scholastic $15. Mailed, phoned or paid at site, Adult $40, Young Adult $30, Scholastic $20. Re-entry $60; not available in Open Section. 3-day schedule: Reg ends Fri 6 pm, rds. Fri 7 pm, Sat 11 & 5, Sun 10 & 3:30. 2-day schedule: Reg ends Sat 10 am, rds. Sat 11, 2 & 5, Sun 10 & 3:30. Byes: OK all, limit 2; Open must commit before rd. 2, others before rd. 3. HR: $95-98, includes free full hot buffet breakfast and free parking, 888-303-1746, 314-726-5400, request chess rate, reserve by 3/6 or rate may increase. Car rental: Avis, 800-331-1600, use AWD #D657633, or reserve car online through Ent: or Continental Chess, Box 8482, Pelham, NY 10803. Questions: DirectorAtChess.US,,, 347-201-2269. $15 service charge for refunds. Advance entries posted at (online entries posted instantly). Blitz tournament Saturday 9:30 pm, enter by 9:16pm.

MAR. 15 Sunday Blitz Weekly & Chess at Cancun's "casual play and chess matches"
- 1:00pm blitz tournament; $20EF -

MAR. 14-15 MOTCF: Midwest Open Team Chess Festival -

MAR. 14-15 2015 Ohio High School Middle School Championship -

MAR. 14 (Saturday) Toledo March Swiss (University of Toledo) James Jagodzinski 419-367-9450. (see Chess Life)

MAR. 20 - Friday Nite Quick/DCC - 7:30pm -

MAR. 21 - 14th Annual Queen City Classic Chess Tournament -

MAR. 21 (Saturday/Cleveland) CWRU March Magnus; Free Pizza & Drinks for players!

MAR. 22 (Sunday/Columbus) - North Market Swiss -

MAR. 22 - Sunday Blitz Weekly & Chess at Cancun's "casual play and chess matches"
- 1:00pm blitz tournament; $20EF -

MAR. 27 - Friday Nite Quick/DCC - Games Start at 7:30pm -

MAR. 28 (Last Saturday of Month) Cincy Tornado - "Zugzwang"
2 Sections: OPEN & Under 1600 -

MAR. 29 - Sunday Blitz Weekly & Chess at Cancun's "casual play and chess matches"
- 1:00pm blitz tournament; $20EF

APR. 3 - Friday Nite Quick/DCC - Games Start at 7:30pm -

APR. 4 - (Saturday) Lexington 1st Saturday G/60 -

APR. 5 - Sunday Blitz Weekly & Chess at Cancun
- 1:00pm blitz tournament; $20EF -

APR. 10 - Friday Nite Quick/DCC - Games Start at 7:30pm -

APR. 10-12 (In Columbus) 2015 National High School (K-12) Championship

APR. 12 Sunday Blitz Weekly & Chess at Cancun "casual play and chess matches"
- 1:00pm blitz tournament; $20EF -

APR. 11 (Saturday) “Diamonds Forever” Pawn Storm XXX -

APR. 11 (Saturday) Toledo April Swiss (University of Toledo) James Jagodzinski 419-367-9450. (see Chess Life)

APR. 11 (Saturday) Parma Open - or

APR. 12 (Sunday/Columbus) - North Market Swiss -

APR. 17 - Friday Nite Quick/DCC - 7:30pm -

APR. 17-19 - 51st Cincinnati Open and 2nd Cincinnati Open Scholastic -

APR. 25 (Last Saturday of Month) Cincy Tornado "En Passant"
2 Sections: OPEN & Under 1600 -

APR. 24-25 & May 1-2 Dayton Chess Club Championship -

APR. 26 Sunday Blitz Weekly & Chess at Cancun "casual play and chess matches"
- 1:00pm blitz tournament; $20EF -

MAY 2 - (Saturday) Lexington 1st Saturday G/60 -

MAY 3 Sunday Blitz Weekly & Chess at Cancun "casual play and chess matches"
- 1:00pm blitz tournament; $20EF -

MAY 8 - Friday Nite Quick/DCC - 7:30pm -

MAY 9 - Toledo May Swiss (University of Toledo) James Jagodzinski 419-367-9450 (see Chess Life)

MAY 10 Sunday Blitz Weekly & Chess at Cancun "casual play and chess matches"
- 1:00pm blitz tournament; $20EF -

MAY 15 - World A Fair. Pay Entry Fee at Dayton Chess Club and receive ticket to the World Affair. Walk 1/2 block
and play Friday Nite Quick chess tournament at the Dayton/Montgomery County Convention Center. Games start 7:30pm

MAY 17 Sunday Blitz Weekly & Chess at Cancun "casual play and chess matches"
- 1:00pm blitz tournament; $20EF -

MAY 21-25 - 24th Chicago Open -

MAY 24 Sunday Blitz Weekly & Chess at Cancun "casual play and chess matches"
- 1:00pm blitz tournament; $20EF -

MAY 29-31 - 2015 Gem City Open -

MAY 30 - Cincy Tornado CANCELLED FOR GEM CITY being held at Dayton Chess Club

June 6 - (Saturday) Lexington 1st Saturday G/60 -

Play an online correspondence chess game with me:

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

USCF to open second office in St. Louis; core functions will remain in Crossville, TN

The U.S. Chess Federation (USCF) has announced that it has opened a corporate office in St. Louis, Missouri, effective February 18, 2015. The USCF St. Louis office, currently located in the CIC St. Louis Building in the Cortex Innovation Community, will immediately serve to support the organization's marketing and development efforts, while the USCF's customer and membership services departments will continue to operate out of its office in Crossville, Tennessee.

"St Louis' central location and vibrant chess community make it an ideal location for the USCF to launch new initiatives as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization," says USCF Executive Director Jean Hoffman. The City's broad-based support for chess was highlighted by USCF President Ruth Haring, explaining that "it is important for the USCF to develop a presence here given the impressive extent of the support and commitment the entire community has exhibited towards promoting chess."

Over the past few years, St. Louis has emerged as both a national and international center for chess. In May of 2014, the United States Senate passed an official resolution recognizing St. Louis as the National Chess Capital. Last September, the St. Louis Chess Club and Scholastic Center hosted the Sinquefield Cup, the strongest chess tournament in the history of chess. For the seventh consecutive year, in April, St. Louis will host the United States Chess Championship.

The USCF is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering people through chess one move at a time. The USCF serves as the organizing body for chess in the United States for over 80,000 members.

Source: USCF Press release dated February 18, 2015 via Chess Life Online.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Happy Birthday Hunter!

Happy 17th birthday to my son, Hunter, a Yankee fan at heart, but very tolerant of his dad's proclivities (or so it seems). Photo taken at Fenway Park, April 2013.

Monday, February 23, 2015

A Peek Ahead at 2015 March Madness

I don't usually get caught up in NCAA basketball's March Madness. But, living in Kentucky this year, I can't escape. So here's an estimate of what the tourney lineup would look like if the selections were made today. Source: my own interpretation of the statistics found here as of this evening (2/23/15, 11:00 PM). Note that the source data will change as more games are played. The teams will be announced on March 15 and the round of 64 begins on March 19.

League and overall records are shown
#1 seeds
Kentucky (1) 14-0 27-0
Virginia (2) 13-1 25-1
Gonzaga (3) 16-0 28-1
Duke (4) 11-3 24-3

#2 seeds
Wisconsin (5) 13-1 25-2
Villanova (6) 12-2 25-2
Arizona (7) 12-2 24-3
Kansas (8) 11-3 22-5

#3 seeds
Notre Dame (9) 12-3 24-4
N. Iowa (10) 15-1 26-2
Wichita St(11) 15-1 25-3
Iowa St. (12) 10-4 20-6

#4 seeds
Utah (13) 11-3 21-5
Maryland (14) 10-4 22-5
N.Carolina (15) 9-5 19-8
Oklahoma (16) 10-5 19-8

#5 seeds
Louisville (17) 9-5 21-6
Arkansas (18) 11-3 22-5
Baylor (19) 8-6 20-7
W.Virginia (20) 9-5 21-6

#6 seeds
SMU (21) 13-2 22-5
VCU (22) 11-3 21-6
Butler (23) 9-5 19-8
S.Diego St(24) 12-3 22-6

# 7 & 8 seeds
Providence (25) 9-5 19-8
Valparaiso* 12-2 25-4
Murray St.* 14-0 24-4
S.F. Austin 12-1 22-4
UC Davis* 11-1 21-4
Colorado St. 10-5 23-5
Sam Houston* 13-1 22-5
Cent.Michigan* 10-4 20-5

Lower seeds #9 thru #16 and play-ins
Harvard* 9-1 19-5
Iona* 16-2 23-6
Wofford* 14-2 23-6
N.C. Central* 13-0 21-6
Wyoming 10-4 21-6
Dayton 10-4 20-6
Rhode Island 11-3 19-6
Davidson 10-4 19-6
Georgia So.* 12-4 19-6
Fla Gulf Coast*11-1 21-7
High Point* 12-4 21-7
Louisiana Tech*12-3 21-7
St. Mary's 12-4 20-7
Boise St. 10-4 20-7
Tulsa 12-2 19-7
Texas A&M 10-4 19-7
UTEP 11-3 19-7
Alabama St.* 11-2 15-7
BYU 11-5 21-8
S. Dakota St.* 12-3 21-8
Oregon 10-5 20-8
N. Dakota St. 12-3 20-8
Mississippi 10-4 19-8
Albany* 13-1 19-8
LSU 8-6 19-8
Michigan St. 10-4 19-8
Ohio St. 8-6 19-8
Georgetown 10-5 18-8
Sacramento St.*12-3 18-8
St.Francis(NY)*14-2 20-9
Chattanooga 13-3 20-9
Indiana 9-6 19-9
Purdue 10-4 18-9
Northeastern* 11-5 19-10
N. Mex. St.* 11-1 19-10
Bucknell* 12-4 17-12

On the bubble (NIT-bound unless they finish strongly or at least one of the teams listed above crashes)
Georgia St. 12-4 19-8
St. John's 7-7 18-9
La. Monroe 12-4 18-9
Georgia 8-6 17-9
Stanford 8-6 17-9
Xavier 8-7 18-10
Pittsburgh 7-7 18-10
Iowa 8-6 17-10
Miami (FL) 7-7 17-10
Oregon St. 8-7 17-10

*denotes probable league champion with automatic bid

Answer to January 29 chess puzzle:
55.Rxa2! Bxa2 56.Bd3+ Bc4 57.Bxf1 Bxf1=

Sunday, February 15, 2015

‘Where Hope Grows’ Set for May 15 Release

Only three more months to wait...

Link to the movie preview

FEBRUARY 12, 2015 | 05:00AM PT
Dave McNary
Film Reporter

Roadside Attractions and Godspeed Pictures have set May 15 for the theatrical release of inspirational drama “Where Hope Grows.”

The film won the Heartland Film Festival Audience Choice Award last year.

Kristoffer Polaha stars as a former a professional baseball player sent to an early retirement due to panic attacks. He struggles with the challenge of raising his teenage daughter but finds himself invigorated by a young man with Down syndrome (played by David DeSanctis) who works at the local grocery store.

The film also stars Billy Zabka, Brooke Burns, McKaley Miller, Alan Powell and Danica McKellar. Chris Dowling directed from his own script. Producers are Steve Bagheri, Simran Singh, Jose Pablo Cantillo and Milan Chakraborty.

The film has over 200,000 Likes on its Facebook page. It will open against Warner’s “Mad Max: Fury Road” and Universal’s “Pitch Perfect 2.”

Original source of this article is here.

The Facebook page for this movie is here.

My previous blog posts concerning this movie:

11/13/13 Produce, the Movie
11/21/13 You Never Know Where Hope Grows

Thursday, February 12, 2015

New SPICE training site

I had the honor and privilege of being invited to visit the brand new SPICE Chess Office at Webster University on its first day open to the public February 9, 2015. The training space (pictured) is about 2,095 sq. ft. and the playing hall is 8,847 sq. ft. It is also a FIDE Training Academy and is located in Webster Groves, Missouri. Plans are in the works for the facility to house a special collection of chess research books and papers. Congratulations to Webster University president Beth Strobel, Provost Julian Schuster and all others involved.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Missed opportunity to save the game

White to move and draw. Here's an opportunity I missed last weekend in Columbus, Ohio. It took the computer search engine about a second to find it. How long did it take you? I am sure I would have found it in a correspondence game, but I thought for 22 minutes staring at this position during the tournament and didn't even consider the key move. After all these years, I still don't understand why the difference. Perhaps I was just tired. Sigh.

I will post the answer in February.

Subsequent note: answer is located here