Posted December 3, 2021 in Campfire Digest

Campfire Digest – December 3, 2021

Good Morning, campers! Welcome to Campfire Chess Digest for Friday, December 3, 2021! As you read this, the 2021 World Chess Championship rages (if you can call it that) in Dubai between Magnus Carlsen and Ian Nepomniachtchi. There’s no clear leader at this point but Nepo certainly put Magnus on the ropes a few times going into Thursday’s rest day.

Here’s some of the best chess action we’ve seen this week:

Anish Giri Annotates WCC 2021 Game 5

https://en.chessbase.com/post/world-championship-2021-g5-expert-annotations
After the sleeper draw that was Game 5 of the World Chess Championship, GM Anish Giri published a very nice annotated game outlining some of the missed opportunities for both players.

Hikaru Nakamura Departs the FIDE World Ranking List

https://en.chessbase.com/post/the-new-fide-world-ranking-list-december-2021
GM Hikaru Nakamura was nowhere to be found on the newly published FIDE World Ranking List because he has not been active in international tournament play for quite some time. He’s mostly traded those commitments for a life on Twitch these days.

Chess.com Remains Undisputed Clickbait Article Champion

https://www.chess.com/article/view/chess-coms-holiday-gift-buying-guide
Ten ways to mate your opponent in five moves… Ten streamers you wouldn’t want to play blitz with… and the list goes on and on. Maybe we could start making a list of Chess.com’s most click-baity articles. In any case, this year’s “Buying Guide” for the holidays is no better than the website’s recent forays into Bitcoin, PogChamps, and other nonsensical stuff.

Levon Aronian Joins the US Chess Federation

https://chess24.com/en/read/news/levon-aronian-completes-transfer-to-usa
The United States continues to build an impressive roster of players with the recent addition of GM Levon Aronian. He joins the ranks of recent additions such as GMs Wesley So and Fabiano Caruana.

The World Chess Championship 2021 continues today in Dubai live via Chess24’s YouTube channel. Chess.com has a stream with GMs Hess and Caruana, but I recommend the Chess24 stream as its less headache-inducing.

Posted November 18, 2021 in FIDE, News

The World Chess Championship Approaches

It’s upon us! The great day of judgment where two of the world’s best chess players will meet to do battle for the title of World Chess Champion. GM Magnus Carlsen has held this title 2013 after defeating legendary Indian GM Viswanathan Anand. Since then, he has defended his title against Anand, GM Sergey Karjakin (2016) and GM Fabiano Caruana (2018). This year, he will face Russian GM Ian Nepomniachtchi in Dubai.

As of this entry, the official website from FIDE has not launched, but the schedule of events has been released.

  • 24 November: Opening Ceremony
  • 25 November: Off day
  • 26 November: Game 1
  • 27 November: Game 2
  • 28 November: Game 3
  • 29 November: Off day
  • 30 November: Game 4
  • 1 December: Game 5
  • 2 December: Off day
  • 3 December: Game 6
  • 4 December: Game 7
  • 5 December: Game 8
  • 6 December: Off day
  • 7 December: Game 9
  • 8 December: Game 10
  • 9 December: Off day
  • 10 December: Game 11
  • 11 December: Game 12
  • 12 December: Game 13
  • 13 December: Off day
  • 14 December: Game 14
  • 15 December: Tie break (or Closing Ceremony)
  • 16 December: Closing Ceremony

Live coverage of the event will be available on Chess24 and Chess.com. For additional details on the event itself, visit FIDE’s official press release on the World Chess Championship and Expo 2020 Dubai.

Posted October 20, 2021 in Game Analysis

Game Analysis – An Interesting Collapse

It’s been a while since I annotated one of my games. Part of that is IRL stuff that’s been getting in the way and part of it is that I haven’t played any games that intrigued me enough recently to annotate. This game is a little bit of an exception. Let’s go…

Posted September 9, 2021 in Game Analysis

Game Analysis – The Sludge

I recently played an 86-move game that was simultaneously the longest and most frustrating game of my short chess career. In an effort to break out of my comfort zone and try something new, I decided to make this game the subject of my first-ever video analysis. Written analysis is provided below the YouTube video. I hope you enjoy it!

Posted August 17, 2021 in Game Analysis

Never Give Up! Never Surrender!

Sometimes I get so frustrated when I make a blunder that I simply give up and rage quit the game. Making a mistake in a chess game can often be as frustrating as being spawn camped by some n00b in Call of Duty. This is something I’ve been actively working on for the past few months: trying to stay in the game despite the apparent hopelessness of the position. Now, there are times when its important to realize that you have no chance of winning and you’re just delaying the inevitable. A lone King versus a Rook and a bunch of pawns comes to mind. But when most of the pieces are still on the board, there’s little reason to give up so quickly. Such is the case with this game where I had to make a painful sacrifice early in the middlegame but was able to turn things around in the end.

Posted August 5, 2021 in Game Analysis

It’s Been a Bad Day

Today was rough all around. Network problems made my day job a challenge and I lost two daily chess games that I should have won. That’s not saying that my opponents didn’t deserve to win. They certainly played good games and came out on top, but there were so many ridiculous blunders today that have been so uncharacteristic of me lately. I managed, in extraordinary fashion, to blunder not one, but two Bishops today. Perhaps the analysis of these games is just a way of venting. I’m sure that I’ll bounce back…I always do. But wow, these are hard to stomach.

And shortly after that little gem was played, this happened…

At least tomorrow is a new day.

This post is simulcast on Chess.com. Check out Campfire Chess on Chess.com.

Posted July 25, 2021 in Game Analysis

Game Analysis – Chipping Away

I’ve lost quite a few disappointing games in the past couple of weeks, so this was a welcome and refreshing victory that gave me insight into some common problems I’ve been having. Given its (albeit brief) instructional value for myself, I felt it was worth a surface analysis and commentary. I hope you enjoy!

Posted July 20, 2021 in Community, News

Happy International Chess Day

Good morning, campers! Today is International Chess Day and there are celebrations going on all around the world to honor our game! Not sure how to celebrate the day? Here are a few suggestions to get you going:

  • Play chess online via Chess.com, lichess, chess24, or any of the myriad of online platforms available.
  • Join your local chess club. If you’re not sure how, just do a Google search for your city/town + “Chess Club” and you’ll most likely find something to get you started.
  • Play in a local over-the-board tournament.
  • Play with a friend.
  • Watch a chess movie! Pawn Sacrifice, Dangerous Moves, Searching for Bobby Fischer, or the Knights of the South Bronx come to mind.

Whatever your passion, there’s plenty to do today to celebrate chess!

Posted July 10, 2021 in Famous Players, Tournaments

Karpov to Attend 2021 US Open

We’re just a few weeks away from the start of the 2021 U.S. Open and US Chess has announced that legendary World Champion GM Anatoly Karpov will be in attendance on August 4th for a lecture, Q & A session, and book signing. Here is the official release info from the US Chess Federation:

Mr. Karpov will deliver a lecture, to be followed by a question-and-answer period.  Then, Mr. Karpov will appear at a book signing in the US Open bookstore.  He’ll be joined there by a former World Junior Champion, GM Maxim Dlugy!  This special event is happening thanks to the combined generosity of the New Jersey State Chess Federation, Chess Max Academy, and US Chess Sales.  US Chess thanks all of these partners for helping to provide our attendees with this great visit!

According to US Chess, the Crowne Plaza, which is hosting the event, is almost out of rooms but the federation has secured local hotels at the same discount rate. For details, visit the official website for the 2021 US Open.

Posted July 6, 2021 in Game Analysis

Personal Analysis – A Closed Conundrum

One of my favorite parts of playing daily chess is how the battles unfold over several days. There are some positions that go fast and others that seem to drag on forever. Then there are those moments where it seems that both sides are ready to lash out. I find myself constantly checking to see if I’ve received a notification that it’s my turn to move when there are tight positions and it’s all hanging by a thread. The game that follows is one such game that I recently played. It was a close battle for most of the game with blunders and mistakes on both sides, but ultimately, I pulled out a very nice win.