Alex Bian trailed his higher-rated Pennsylvania opponent, Grant Xu, 4.5-5.0 heading into the final round of the 2017 US Junior Open, completed July 23 in Northfield, MN.
Observers indicate Alex was down several pawns -- and trailing on time. But king safety is often paramount, and Bian's triumph over Xu gave the Illinois high schooler uncontested first place in the top section of the six-round tournament.
Xu finished second in the 51-player U21 section, followed by a three-pack of 4.5's. Shreyas Reddy finished in a multi-way tie for sixth place with 4.0.
Rock River Chess is hosting its first-ever US Chess-rated tournament on Saturday, July 22nd, at the East Branch Library in Rockford, IL.
RRC is a new USCF -- and ICA -- affiliate that's working to bring chess back to the forefront of Rockford recreation. We're hoping to hold more USCF rated tournaments to supplement the plethora of non-rated chess activities in the area.
After hosting numerous chess events around town for the past year (chess at the city market, a chess parklet on the street, weekly chess at Prairie Street Brewing Co.), the time is right to get USCF-rated events back in Rockford.
If you follow the Chicago chess scene on Facebook, chances are that you have heard about the Chicago Chess Blitzers. Thanks to enthusiastic promotion by Nathan Kelly on YouTube and social media, word is spreading fast about this strong chess club on Chicago's southside.
While blitz players on Chicago's southside have been meeting at McDonald's at 95th and Halsted for a long time, ten Chicago Chess Blitzers recently pitched in to secure the lease on a storefront at 8622 S. Pulaski in Chicago.
The doors of the Chicago Chess Club will open on July 1, 2017 and will remain open from noon to midnight daily.
The Chicago Chess Center is still in search of a permanent home but it's been an active organizer of tournaments.
At its June 24 Midsummer event on the UIC campus, 110 participated in three sections.
FM George Li and US Chess Expert Akhil Kalghatgi tied for top honors in the Open section with 3.5/4 scores. Nine players were a half-point back at 3.0.
The CCC reports $1320 was distributed in the Open and $660 in prizes were paid out in the Reserve which saw a three-way tie for first. Deepak Salian, Monish Bhasin and Elijah Platnick each scored 3.5/4 in the Reserve.
Although the ICA Board is nine members strong -- a step up from where we were in the prior year -- we're still one short according to ICA bylaws. While ICA President Bill Feldman has received several inquiries from individuals within Cook County and its six surrounding "collar" counties, there is a strong hope to find additional representation involving any of the other 95 Illinois counties.
At this point, the board is meeting telephonically on Wednesday evenings at 7:30 so that availability is important, along with a strong interest in expanding chess in Illinois and enhancing ICA services. Finances for the 56-year old 501 (c) (3) are incredibly solid, so we'd like to hear from folks willing to work cooperatively to guide a sea-worthy vessel.