Monday, November 30, 2009

COP-15 Summit on global climate change

A bit of non chess post.

As you may be aware, there is a global climate change summit happening this
December in Copenhagen, called COP-15. 192 countries will be attending this
summit, and the goal is to create a global agreement on curbing greenhouse
gas emissions. This agreement will replace the existing Kyoto Protocol,
which expires in 2012. This is the world's last chance to come to an
agreement on climate change before the Kyoto protocol expires - kind of a
big deal.

My company, Ogilvy, has been working with the United Nations to create a
grassroots movement around COP-15. Our goal is to get millions of people to
sign a petition addressed to our world leaders, asking them to take
meaningful action. That's where you come in. I'm asking all of my friends
to take 45 seconds out of their day TODAY to sign this important petition.
We must communicate to our leaders that this issue is important to us. If
they know that their constituents demand action, there's a much greater
likelihood that COP-15 will result in meaningful change with regards to
curbing greenhouse gas emissions.

If you have not yet signed the petition I urge you to do so now at

You can also become a fan on Facebook

Here is the link to download the Facebook application:

Sunday, November 29, 2009

So wins again

This time against American grandmaster Gata Kamsky. Kamsky is a top GM and was the previous cup winner as well. Fortunately for Kamsky he already qualified for the Candidates stage.

So has knocked out two super GMs namely Ivancuk and Kamsky, good news for the Philippines. However, if anyone starts thinking that Philippines is going to have their own super GM, I doubt it. Maybe in a few more years judging by the way that So won (he won the first game and drew the second in both matches). I did not see anything special that So did. I think So was just trying to draw the two games and take his chances in the rapid. His good fortune was that his opponents were trying too hard to win.

These matches are just too short but they are real entertaining to see such illustrious names being eliminated. It will be real interesting to see how far So can progress.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Ivanchuk was So beaten

Filipino wondor boy Wesley So continues to make his mark in the FIDE World Cup by taking out super GM Vassily Ivanchuk. Wesley won the first game and held the second to a draw to make it to the next round. This got to be the biggest upset in the World Cup so far. Just four (or was it three) years ago, Wesley was a virtual unknown outside of the Philippines. I must say the DATMO tournament have given a number of unknown Asian players their first recognition. Look at where players like Wang Hao, Li Chao, Wesley So, Darwin Laylo and recently Yu YangYi are. All these players have made it to the World Cup.

Other players who made it through are all Chinese, Wang Yue, Yu YangYi and Wang Hao.

None of the three Indians , Surya Ganguly , Chanda Sandipan and Krishnan Sasikiran, survived. The Chinese players, Zhou Weiqi and Zhou JianChao are also out. However Li Chao still have a chance. He managed to win the second game to take it to tie-breakers.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

FIDE World Cup, Tie-breakers updated

2008 DATMO champion Li Chao won his tie-breaker against GM Sargissian to move into the second round. Another Chinese, Zhou WeiQi also made it through beating Israeli GM Sutovsky. They join Wang Yue, Wang Hao and Zhou Jianchao who already qualified earlier.

Thus, there will be five Chinese players in the second round. Philippines last hope GM Laylo lost a closely contested match against David Navarra as did Vietnam's only player, Le Quang Liem.

India will have three representatives, Krishnan Sasikiran, Surya Ganguly and Chanda Sandipan. Philippines still have their wondor boy,GM Wesley So who knocked out Azerbaizan GM Gadir Guseinov (thanks to "The Raj" of DATCC, who pointed this out.

Monday, November 23, 2009

FIDE World Cup 2009

The World Championship cycle for 2009-2011 had started last Saturday with the beginning of the FIDE World Cup in Khanty-Mansiysk, which incidentally will also be the host of the 2010 Chess Olympiad.

It was fun and slightly nerve wracking to follow the games at Playchess server. I was particularly interested in the games of the Asian players who are up against some of the world's best. I followed a number of participants from this year's Dato' Arthur Tan tournament as I wanted to see how their games would go.

The most amazing match for me was the young Chinese sensation Yu YangYi seeded at 113th!. He won the first game against Sergei Movsesian (16th seed) and in the second game I thought he had a possible second win. The game ended in a draw and YangYi is through.

Another Chinese ,Zhou Jianchao , also knocked out his more fancied opponent. In this case it is at the expense of the Armenian GM Rauf Mamedov.

In the 2007 DATMO first round, I was paired against and unknown and untitled Filipino named Darwin. I was beaten easily and Darwin went on to become a grandmaster a year later. This is the talent that Philippines have. Anyway GM Darwin Laylo lost the first game against David Navara, but came back strongly to win the second and tie the match. Tie-breakers will be played today.

Other notable matches are Li Chao drawing both games against Gabriel Sargissian, Negi Parimarjan against Vadim Milov, Le Quang Liem also goes into tiebreakers with Vladislav Tkachiev (yes, that Tkachiev)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Kids for Chess Camp

Another chess camp is planned for December and this is the 6th Edition of the Kids for Chess Camp. The camp is organized by Collin Madhavan, a well known chess coach in the Klang Valley.

The course has been designed to be fun and informative for the absolute beginner, the intermediate player as well as the aspiring tournament player. The Chess camp is headed by International Master Jimmy Liew & Candidate Master Collin Madhavan, and will be assisted by a team of very qualified trainers.

Venue for the camp is :
Pandan Lake Club (Perdana Ballroom), 28, Jalan Perdana 3/8,
Pandan Perdana, Kuala Lumpur

The camp is over two days from Monday 7 December to Tuesday 8th December. Fees are a very affordable RM90 for the two days, inclusive of breakfast and lunch!

For more information and to join the camp, contact Mr Collin Madhavan at 03-91316474 or to his mobile at 016-2123578, or visit

Chess Camp by Mok Tze Meng

A chess training camp is being organized by IM elect Mok Tze Meng. It is open to all children who are currently unrated or those rated under 1800. Courses will cover understanding in chess openings, creative thinking (the way how chess helps in studies too), positional understandings, planning and endgame concepts in Chess.

There will be two sections, Beginner to Intermediate and Intermediate to Expert. The first cover those who are unrated or those rated below 1000 while the latter are for those rated over 1000.

The Beginner to Intermediate is designed to attract the young to the game of chess. They will learn how to think logically and how to make good decision while in critical situations.

The Intermediate to Expert is to target those who want to break-through from their current level of play. Break-through involved many factors, only a good chess player cum trainer can uncover the students’ weaknesses, problems and rectify them.

The camp runs from 2-4 December 2009 at the Cempaka School in Cheras. Course fees are RM250 for Beginner to Intermediate and RM350 for Intermediate to Expert. Cempaka School students get a 10% discoutn. For full details, contact Mr Mok Tze Meng at 016-2233536 or email him at

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Semi-Final Tiebreaker Game 2

Mok - Mas

1.e4 c5 2.d4 cxd4 3.c3 g6 4.cxd4 d5 5.exd5 Nf6 6.Bb5+ Nbd7 7.Nc3 a6 8.Bxd7+ Qxd7 9.Qb3 Qg4

Looks like white is in trouble right in the opening

10.Nge2 Qxg2 11.Rg1 Qh3

Why not grab another pawn? white has the better development but black has the better pawn structure. 12. Bf4 is the way to go. If white do not come up with something to exploit his better development, black will be better in the middle-game.

12. Rg3?

Perhaps Mok feels he has to do something (he has to win to tie the rapid and go into blitz tie-breaker). But giving up the h-pawn for nothing? 12...Qxh2 13. Bf4 don't work because of ..Nh5

Mas don't see the need to take any risks. Now 13. Bf4 should be ok for white

13. Rg5 Qf3 14. Rg3

It is not Mok's nature to chicken out, so I do not see a repetition. Maybe he wants to gain back some time on the clock (he has 14 minutes left)


17 minutes left for Mas

15. Na4 b5

Mas moves almost immediately, seems confident with his position. 16. Nb6 Rb8 is not dangerous at all.

16.Nb6 Rb8 17.Rg5

Only move is 17...Qh3. Mok might go for another round of repetition :)

17...Qh3 18. Rg3 Qf5

White has nothing in this position. Unfortunately for him, a draw is not an option.

19. Rg5 Qf3


Mok agrees to draw. Mas moves forward to the finals and will meet the winner of the Lim Yee Weng-Nicholas Chan match.

It was quite a blow for Mok who played quite well against a difficult opponent. If he had not blundered in the previous game, it could very well be him that goes into the finals instead of Mas.

Semi-Final Tie-Breaker

Mas - Mok Tze Meng

1. e4 g6 2. d4 c6 3. Be3

Mas deviates first.

d5 4 e5 f6

Nimzowitsch wrote a book "My System" where he laid the foundations for black against the pawn center. He advocates attacking the base of the centre with ...c5. But in the Modern , we often see black playing ...f6 attacking the head of the chain instead.

5. f4 Nh6 6. Nf3 qb6 7. Qc1 Bb7 8. c4

Traditionalists might not like to play like this as it allows black a strong d5 square after capturing on c4.

0-0 9. Nc3

Black will probably defend with ...Be6 as ...e6 will weaken the e5 square.


White might try 10.c5 and go for queen-side expansion. Releasing the centre tension will also allow black to try for king-side play. Maybe 10.b3 to maintain the centre.

10. h3 Qd8

10...dxc4? 11. d5 wins a piece. But now the pawn capture is a threat

11.cxd5 cxd5

white has managed to keep his strong centre intact. The only way for black to attack it is ..Nf7, ...g5 etc but this is a very risky manoeuvre. Instead black will try something like ...fxe5,...Bf5 and ...e6

12. Be2 Nf5 13.g4

Black will find life difficult after this ...
sorry...white will find life difficult after this ...

white time :10 minutes
Black time : 9 minutes

13..Ng3 14. Rg1 Nxe2 15. Kxe2 Nc6 16. Qd2 Qa5 17.Raf1 Rad8

white time :8 minutes
Black time : 5 minutes

17.Kd1 fxe5

I think there is a sac on e5 coming

18. fxe5 Rxf3 19 Rxf3 Bxe5

This is not a position you want to have as white with five minutes on the clock.
20. dxe5 d4 opens up a world of hurt for white.

white time :4 minutes
Black time : 4 minutes

20. Kc1 Bg7 21. Kb1 Kh8

Black plans ..Bg8...e5

22. Rd1 Bg8 23. Bg1

23...e5 should be strong now

23...e5 24. Ne2

Ladies and gentleman, we are now officially in blitz mode. There may be some interruptions in your live telecast :)

24...qxd2 25. Rxd2 e4 26. Rf1 Bh6 27. Rc2

Mok is scratching his head, bad sign? :)

White won.
Mok blundered a whole rook in a won position

Bg5 29.Bh2 Be6 30.Bf4 Be7 31.Bh6 Rg8 32.a3 g5 33.b4 a6 34.Kc1 Rg6 35.Bf8 Bf6 36.Bc5 Kg7 37.a4 h5 38.b5 axb5 39.axb5 Na5 40.Rc3 hxg4 41.hxg4 Bxg4 42.Ng3 Nc4 43.Nxe4 dxe4 44.Rxc4 Be2 45.Rxf6 Rxf6 46.Rc2 Bxb5 47.d5 Rf1+ 48.Kd2 Rf2+ 49.Bxf2