Category Archives: 2019

Remembering Charles Edward Kemp (18-XI-1901, 09-XI-1986)

We remember Charles Edward Kemp who passed away, this day, November 9th, 1986

Using a Google translation from the Italian(!) wikipedia article we have

Charles Edward Kemp ( Manchester , November 18, 1901 – Manchester , November 9, 1986 ) was a British chess composer .

He composed over 600 problems , many of which were of help and Fairy (with heterodox pieces ). He often collaborated with Thomas Rayner Dawson in editing the Fairy Chess Review , founded by the latter ..

Together with Karl Fabel he wrote the book Schach ohne Grenzen (“Chess Without Borders”), Walter Rau Verlag, Düsseldorf, 1969.

In the second problem reported below, the heterodox piece called Grillo (” Grasshopper ” in English, represented by an inverted Woman ) appears . Remember that this piece moves along the columns or diagonals, but only by skipping a piece (of both colors) and completing the move in the next house; if an opposing piece is found, it will be captured. In any case, even without moving, he acts on this house. The black cricket in c4, for example, can make only five moves: c4-c2, c4xe4, c4-c7, c4-f7 and c4-f1; in all the houses of arrival it does not check the white king.

(From https://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Edward_Kemp)

Birthday Greetings IM Alan Merry

IM Alan Baxter Merry
IM Alan Baxter Merry

Birthday greetings to IM Alan Merry on this day (November 8th) in 1996.

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IM Alan Baxter Merry
IM Alan Baxter Merry

Happy Birthday IM Gary Quillan

IM Gary M Quillan
IM Gary M Quillan

Best wishes to IM Gary M Quillan on his birthday, this day (November 7th) in 1970.

Garry Quillan
Garry Quillan

Congratulations FM -> IM (nearly) Marcus Harvey !

FM Marcus Ross Harvey
FM Marcus Ross Harvey

Congratulations are in order for Witney based Southampton Unversity student FM Marcus Harvey who obtained his second International Master norm at the recent Hull 4NCL International Congress by scoring 4.5/9 with wins over IM Andrew Greet and IM Richard Palliser. Marcus plays for 4NCL Wood Green.

FM Marcus Ross Harvey
FM Marcus Ross Harvey

Remembering Jacob Henry Sarratt (?-?-1772, 06-XI-1819)

Jacob Henry Sarratt
Jacob Henry Sarratt

We remember Jacob Henry Sarratt who died 200 years ago today (November 6th) in 1819.

Chess historians will, of course, be familiar with JHS but the name is (probably) not well known outside these exalted circles.

Possibly his most obvious contribution to chess in England was in 1807 when he influenced the result of games that ended in stalemate. You may not know that in England prior to 1807 a game that ended in stalemate was recorded as a win for the party who was stalemated. JHS was able to influence various major chess clubs so that the result be recorded as a draw. Much endgame theory would be different if it wasn’t for JHS !

Outside of chess, JHS was an interesting chap :

The content below has been copied (and we have corrected a few typos along the way) from http://www.edochess.ca/batgirl/Sarratt.html

Also, http://billwall.phpwebhosting.com/articles/Sarratt.htm is worthy of consultation.

Jacob Henry Sarratt, born in 1772, worked primarily as schoolmaster but was much better known for his advocations which, of course, included chess.

After Philidor’s death, Verdoni (along with Leger, Carlier and Bernard – all four who co-authored Traité Théorique et Pratique du jeu des Echecs par une Societé d’ Amateurs) was considered one of the strongest players in the world, especially in England. Verdoni had taken Philidor’s place as house professional at Parsloe’s. He mentored Jacob Sarratt until he died in 1804. That year Sarratt became the house professional at the Salopian at Charing Cross in London and most of his contemporaries considered him London’s strongest player.

There he claimed the title of Professor of Chess while teaching chess at the price of a guinea per game.

By any measure Surratt was not a particularly strong player, but he was able to maintain the illusion that he was by avoiding the stronger players as he lorded over his students who didn’t know better.

Sarratt’s most important contributiion to chess was that he mentored William Lewis who in turn mentored Alexander McDonnell.

Surratt had a strange notion that chess culminated in the 16th century and that everything since then had been a step backwards. This odd notion had a positive side. Philidor was the darling of the English chess scene. Almost all books at that time were versions of, or at least based on, Philidor’s book. Surratt at least kept open the possiblitly that there were ideas beyond those of Philidor.

In 1808, true to his role as a teacher, Surratt published his Treatise on the Game of Chess, a book that mainly concentrated on direct attacks on the king which he lifted from the Modense writers.

He translated several older writers whom he admired (though his translations are not considered particularly good):
The Works of Damiano, Ruy Lopez and Salvio in 1813.
The Works of Gianutio and Gustavus Selenus in 1817.

In 1921 a posthumous edition of his Treatise, A New Treatise on the Game of Chess, was published. This copy covered the game of chess as a whole and was designed for the novice player. It also contained a 98 page analysis of the Muzio Gambit

In addition to his chess books, Surratt also published
[i]History of Man in 1802,
A New Picture of London[/i] in 1803
He translated Three Monks!!! from French in 1803 and Koenigsmark the Robber from German in 1803.

His second wife, Elizabeth Camillia Dufour, was also a writer. In 1803 (before they were married, which was 1804), she published a novel called Aurora or the Mysterious Beauty.

They were married the following year. His first wife had died in 1802 at the age of 18. Both his wives were from Jersey.

Contrary to what one might expect, Sarratt has been described tall, lean and muscular and had even been a prize-fighter at one point. He had also bred dogs for fighting. He was regarded as a very affable fellow and very well-read but with limited taste (Ed : surely this applies to everyone ?)

William Hazlitt, in his essay On Coffee-House Politicians wrote:

[Dr. Whittle] was once sitting where Sarratt was playing a game at chess without seeing the board… Sarratt, who was a man of various accomplishments, afterwards bared his arm to convince us of his muscular strength…
Sarratt, the chess-player, was an extraordinary man. He had the same tenacious, epileptic faculty in other things that he had at chess, and could no more get any other ideas out of his mind than he could those of the figures on the board. He was a great reader, but had not the least taste. Indeed the violence of his memory tyrannised over and destroyed all power of selection. He could repeat [all] Ossian by heart, without knowing the best passage from the worst; and did not perceive he was tiring you to death by giving an account of the breed, education, and manners of fighting-dogs for hours together. The sense of reality quite superseded the distinction between the pleasurable and the painful. He was altogether a mechanical philosopher.”

Somewhere along the way there must have come about a complete reversal of his fortunes because Surratt died impoverished in 1819, leaving his wife destitute. But the resiliant Elizabeth Sarratt was able to support herself by giving chess lessons to the aristocracy of Paris.

She must have been very well liked. In 1843 when she herself became old and unable to provide for herself, players from both England and France took up a fund to help her out. She lived until 1846.

Some games by Jacob Henry Sarratt:

Best Wishes IM Philip J Morris

Reenen duToit, Philip Gregory, Alan Hanreck, Tony Stebbings, Philip Morris, Conor Murphy
Reenen duToit, Philip Gregory, Alan Hanreck, Tony Stebbings, Philip Morris, Conor Murphy

We wish IM Philip J Morris all the best on his birthday, this day (November 5th) in 1967.

Phil plays regularly for Beckenham & Charlton Chess Club in the London Chess League and has played for Invicta Knights Maidstone in the Four Nations League.

Birthday Greetings IM Gary Lane

IM Gary Lane, photograph by John Upham
IM Gary Lane, photograph by John Upham

We send birthday wishes “down under” to IM Gary William Lane, born this day (November 4th) in 1964.

This was written about Gary aged 14 prior to the 1979 Spassky vs the BCF Junior Squad simultaneous display :

“Churston Grammar and Paignton. Rating 173. BCF Junior squad U-14 co-champion, 1978.”

From Wikipedia :

Gary William Lane (born 4 November 1964) is a professional chess player and author. He became an International Master in 1987 and won the Commonwealth Chess Championship in 1988. He has written over thirty books on chess, including Find the Winning Move, Improve Your Chess in 7 Days and Prepare to Attack. There have been translations in French, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish. In the 1980s the ITV documentary “To Kill a King” was screened nationwide in Great Britain.It featured a young Michael Adams and Lane. This feature is shown regularly at chess film festivals.[1]

IM Gary Lane
IM Gary Lane

After his marriage to Woman International Master Nancy Jones, he moved to Australia, winning the Australian Chess Championship in 2004. He won the 2005 Oceania Chess Championship and represented Oceania at the Chess World Cup 2005.

He has also represented Australia in the 2002, 2004, and 2006 Chess Olympiads.[2] In the 2004 Olympiad he helped Australia score a 2–2 draw with his former country England, scoring a decisive win over Nigel Short.[3] He has been a chess coach for England or Australia at the World Junior and also European Junior championship for over a decade[when?].

Gary & family at the London Chess Classic, photograph by John Upham
Gary & family at the London Chess Classic, photograph by John Upham

In 2012 he won the George Trundle Masters in Auckland, New Zealand with a score of 7/9,[4] and the NZ South Island Championships in Dunedin, with a score of 8/9.[5] He was unbeaten in both events.

In 2015 at the Australian tournament the Doeberl Cup he beat Loek van Wely the reigning Dutch Champion and one of the world’s leading players. [6] He played the Closed Sicilian which he has also written about in two books. In 2016 he came =1st at George Trundle Masters in Auckland, New Zealand with a score of 7/9,[7] and followed this up with =1st place scoring 8/9 at the NZ South Island Championships in Canterbury.[8] He did not lose any games in the two events. At the 2nd Fiji International Open Chess Tournament Lane dominated the event winning with the perfect score of 7/7.[9] A score of 9/9 and clear first place was the result at the 1st Fiji International Rapid Open.[10]

Lane is a supporter of Torquay United F.C. [11]

Wells, Lane, Emms and Norwood
Wells, Lane, Emms and Norwood

Happy Birthday IM Chris Beaumont

IM Christopher R Beaumont
IM Christopher R Beaumont

We send best wishes to IM Christopher R Beaumont on his birthday, 28th October 1952.

IM Chris Beaumont
IM Chris Beaumont

Happy Birthday IM James Terry Sherwin (25-X-1933)

IM James Terry Sherwin
IM James Terry Sherwin, image by John Upham

We send best wishes to IM James Terry Sherwin, a welcome visitor from “over the pond”

From Wikipedia :

James Terry Sherwin (born October 25, 1933)[1] is an American corporate executive and International Master in chess.

Born in New York City[1] in 1933, Sherwin attended Stuyvesant High School, Columbia College (Phi Beta Kappa) and Columbia Law School. He graduated from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy Officer Candidate School in 1956 and later became a Lieutenant Commander. He is an attorney admitted to the New York and Supreme Court Bars. He joined GAF Corporation in 1960 serving in various legal and operational roles and eventually becoming its Chief Financial Officer. He was CFO at Triangle Industries from 1983 to 1984, rejoining GAF Corporation as Vice Chairman from 1985 to 1990.

While at GAF, in 1988, he was indicted by the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Rudolph Giuliani, for stock manipulation in connection with the 1986 sale of stock owned by GAF.[2] He was convicted after three trials, but the conviction was reversed on appeal[3] and dismissed with prejudice.[4] In 1991 he was appointed Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Hunter Douglas N.V., a Dutch multinational company, in which capacity he served until 1999. Since then he has been a Director and an adviser to Hunter Douglas.

He is an Overseer of the International Rescue Committee and member of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York. He received an Honorary Doctor of Laws Degree from the University of Bath in December, 2007.

In chess, Sherwin finished third and tied for third in the US Chess Championship four times and tied for fourth three times.[5] He was Intercollegiate Champion and New York State Champion in 1951 and US Speed Champion in 1956–57 and 1959–60. He earned the International Master title in 1958.[1] He played in the Portorož Interzonal in 1958, which was part of the 1960 World Championship cycle. While he finished only 17th out of 21 players, he scored (+2–2=2) against the six players who qualified from the tournament to the Candidates tournament at Bled 1959. He is a previous President of the American Chess Foundation.

Sherwin resides with his wife, Hiroko, near Bath, United Kingdom.

Famous for “Sherwin slid the rook here with his pinky, as if to emphasize the cunning of this mysterious move” as annotated in Game 1, “Too Little, Too Late” of My Sixty Memorable Games by Robert James Fischer (and game introductions by Larry Evans).

James has been a frequent to English Rapidplay tournaments at Richmond and Golders Green and, in August 2019 in Torquay, aged 86, tied for first place in the Rapidplay event at the British Championships.

The Columbia College chess team of 1949–1952 after a radio match with Yale. Right to left: James Sherwin, Eliot Hearst, Carl Burger, Francis Mechner (Courtesy of the Columbia University Archives).
The Columbia College chess team of 1949–1952 after a radio match with Yale. Right to left: James Sherwin, Eliot Hearst, Carl Burger, Francis Mechner (Courtesy of the Columbia University Archives).

Remembering Sir Theodore Henry Tylor (13-V-1900, 23-X-1968)

Sir Theodore Henry Tylor
Sir Theodore Henry Tylor

We remember Sir Theodore Henry Tylor who passed away on October 23rd 1968.

From Wikipedia :

Sir Theodore Henry Tylor (13 May 1900 – 23 October 1968)[1] was a lawyer and international level chess player, despite being nearly blind. In 1965, he was knighted for his service to organisations for the blind. He was Fellow and Tutor in Jurisprudence at Balliol College, Oxford for almost forty years.[2]

Born in Bournville,[1] Tylor learned to play chess at age seven. His chess skill increased while he attended Worcester College for the Blind from 1909 to 1918. He studied at Oxford University beginning in 1918, and captained the Oxford University Chess Club. Tylor received First-class Honours in Jurisprudence in 1922 and was made an honorary scholar of Balliol College. The next year, he became a Bachelor of Civil Law and a lecturer at Balliol College. Called to the Bar by the Inner Temple with a certificate of honour, he was made a Fellow at Balliol College in 1928.[3]

Theodore Henry Tylor, Courtesy of John Saunders and Britbase
Theodore Henry Tylor, Courtesy of John Saunders and Britbase

Tylor competed in twelve British Championships, finishing fourth in his first appearance in 1925. His best result was in 1933, finishing second to Mir Sultan Khan.[2][3] He tied for first at the 1929/30 Hastings Premier Reserves alongside George Koltanowski ahead of Salo Flohr, Josef Rejfiř, Ludwig Rellstab, C.H.O’D. Alexander, Daniël Noteboom, and Milan Vidmar.[2] Tylor played in the top section, the Hastings Premier, nine times beginning in 1930/1. His best finish was 6th= in 1936/7.[3] He was first reserve for the English team at the Hamburg 1930 Chess Olympiad.[3][4]

Tylor won the British Correspondence Chess Championship in 1932, 1933, and 1934.[1][2] He shared 5–6th at Margate 1936 with P. S. Milner-Barry, but he won their individual game and drew with 2nd- to 4th-place finishers José Raúl Capablanca, Gideon Ståhlberg, and Erik Lundin (Salo Flohr won). Although he finished 12th at Nottingham 1936, he had the best score of the British participants, ahead of C. H. O’D. Alexander, G. A. Thomas, and William Winter.[5] Mikhail Botvinnik noted that Tylor was using a tactile chess board that he incessantly fingered, as well as a device for counting the number of moves made.[6]

Tylor was President of the Midland Counties’ Chess Union from 1947 to 1950, but his work for the university and for the welfare of the blind limited the time he had to devote to chess. Tylor also enjoyed bridge.[3] He died in Oxford on 23 October 1968.[1]

Sir Theodore Henry Tylor
Sir Theodore Henry Tylor
Worcester, circa 1931: Mir Sultan Khan (left) plays Theodore Tylor, while Sir George Thomas (far left) and Arthur Mackenzie (far right) spectate. Photo courtesy of Britbase.
Worcester, circa 1931: Mir Sultan Khan (left) plays
Theodore Tylor, while Sir George Thomas (far left) and
Arthur Mackenzie (far right) spectate.
Photo courtesy of Britbase.