Birthday of IM James Terry Sherwin (25-X-1933)
Birthday of IM Adam Ceiriog Hunt (21-X-1980)
Happy birthday WGM Dr. Jana Bellin on this day (December 9th) in 1947.
From Wikipedia :
Jana Bellin (née Malypetrová; born 9 December 1947) is a British, formerly Czechoslovak chess player. She was awarded the Woman International Master chess title in 1969 and the Woman Grandmaster title in 1982.
Bellin was born in Prague, Czechoslovakia. She was the Czech Women’s Champion in 1965 and 1967 under her maiden name of Malypetrová. After her marriage to William Hartston she moved to England in 1970 and won the British Women’s Championship in 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1976, 1977 (after a play-off), and 1979. She has fifteen appearances in the Women’s Chess Olympiads, representing Czechoslovakia in 1966 and 1969 and England thirteen times from 1972 through 2006, seven times on first board. At the Olympiad she earned individual silver medals in 1966 and 1976, a team bronze medal in 1968 with the Czechoslovakian team, and a team silver in 1976 with England.
Bellin is a medical doctor specialising in anaesthetics, and works in intensive care at Sandwell General Hospital, West Bromwich, England.
She is also Chairman of the FIDE Medical Commission, which supervises drug testing of chess players.
Bellin was married first to International Master William Hartston, then to Grandmaster Tony Miles, and after that to International Master Robert Bellin. She and Bellin have two sons: Robert (born 1988) and Christopher (born 1991).
She is the granddaughter of thrice Prime Minister of Czechoslovakia, Jan Malypetr. and cousin of author and human rights campaigner Jiří Stránský.
We remember Gordon Thomas Crown who died this day (November 17th) in 1947
We have reproduced his obituary from British Chess Magazine, Volume LXVII (1947), Number 12 (December), Page 387-8 and we assume that this was written by the then editor, Julius du Mont :
We are grateful to Leonard Barden on the identity of T.J.B. :
“Thomas John Beach, wartime RAF navigator with Distinguished Flying Cross, leading light of Liverpool chess, regular British championship player for many years, chairman of BCF junior selectors, father of a leading Midlands expert, a good and dedicated man” TJB was the father of Richard Beach who won the British Boys Under 18 title in 1961.
From Wikipedia :
Gordon Thomas Crown (20 June 1929 – 17 November 1947) was a promising British chess player who died of appendicitis at the age of eighteen. He is best known for his win against the Russian Grandmaster Alexander Kotov shortly before his death.
Crown was born in Liverpool in 1929. He finished second in the British under 18 championship in 1946 and improved rapidly, winning the Premier Reserve section of the 1946/7 Hastings International Chess Congress. This led to his being placed on the reserve list for the 1947 British Chess Championship. Following the withdrawal of the defending champion Robert Forbes Combe, he was allowed to play in the championship, where he finished third (Harry Golombek won).
Consequently, he was selected to play for the British team in the 1947 Britain-USSR match, where he caused a sensation by defeating the Soviet Grandmaster Alexander Kotov, though he lost the return game. He also defeated Max Gellis in a Britain-Australia radio match.
On 17 November 1947 he was admitted to hospital, complaining of a stomach upset. Diagnosed too late with appendicitis, complicated by his diabetes, he died in the operating theatre.
His friend (and former British champion) Leonard Barden speculates that had he lived, Crown would have become at least a strong Grandmaster, further noting that he was ” … open, friendly and modest as well as a clear and enthusiastic explainer of his chess ideas; I think he would have been like Keres or Gligoric in their countries, a model for our young players.”
Harry Golombek was similarly impressed with Crown’s play, stating that “In his short life, he had already shown himself to be of master strength and was potentially a very great player.”
We are grateful to be able to use comments from long time friend, Leonard Barden posted under the nom de plume of Roberts Partner on chessgames.com :
“As to the circumstances of Crown’s death. The finger of blame must be pointed at the family doctor for failing to make a timely correct diagnosis. On Sunday 16 November 1947 a chess friend visited the Crown home at Ingledene Road, Liverpool, and found Crown in bed. He explained that his doctor had diagnosed a stomach upset and had recommended rest. The friend and Crown played and analysed together for several hours, and Crown did not appear in any physical discomfort. But that night sfter the friend left his condition deteriorated and he was rushed to hospital where he died in the early morning hours of 17 November. There was also a belief among some Liverpool chess players that the hospital procedures could have been better.”
“On another thread some CG posters expressed surprise at the Ritson Morry v Crown game where Morry fell into a well-known opening trap.
The British championship at Harrogate in August 1947 was played in a spa building where the underfloor heating was still switched on. This coincided with one of the warmest summers on record (it was the year in which Compton and Edrich made their memorable cricket achievements for Middlesex). By the second week of the BCF congress older and overweight players (the latter group including Ritson Morry) were wilting. Ritson also had some long adjourned games, and by the time of his game with Crown in the final round was exhausted. The game finished in 15-20 minutes so by the time other players went to spectate after their opening moves there was just a reset board with no sign of the players and no indication of what had transpired. Other final round results went Crown’s way so that he finished third outright and thus got selected on a high board for the USSR match.”
and here is an article by ddtru (?) in chess.com : full article
We are grateful to renowned chess historian, Taylor Kingston for supplying these scans of an article from Chess Life in 1947 about Gordon Crown written by Reuben Fine :
Best wishes to WGM Sheila Jackson on here birthday, this day, (November 11th) in 1957.
From Wikipedia :
Sheila A Jackson (born 11 November 1957) is an English chess player who holds the title of Woman Grandmaster (WGM, 1988). She is a four-time winner of the British Women’s Chess Championship (1975, 1978, 1980, 1981).
n 1970, Sheila Jackson won the British Chess Youth Championship in the age group U14, but in 1971 she repeated this success in the age group U18. Sheila Jackson participated in many British Women’s Chess Championships and four times won this tournament (1975, 1978, 1980, 1981), but in 1977, after the additional match, she was second.
Sheila Jackson played for England in the Women’s Chess Olympiads:
In 1974, at first reserve board in the 6th Chess Olympiad (women) in Medellín (+2, =2, -5),
In 1976, at second board in the 7th Chess Olympiad (women) in Haifa (+5, =2, -2) and won the team silver medal,
In 1978, at second board in the 8th Chess Olympiad (women) in Buenos Aires (+5, =3, -4),
In 1980, at seconde board in the 9th Chess Olympiad (women) in Valletta (+5, =4, -3),
In 1982, at second board in the 10th Chess Olympiad (women) in Lucerne (+7, =3, -2) and won the individual silver medal,
In 1984, at second board in the 26th Chess Olympiad (women) in Thessaloniki (+5, =7, -2),
In 1986, at second board in the 27th Chess Olympiad (women) in Dubai (+6, =2, -4),
In 1988, at third board in the 28th Chess Olympiad (women) in Thessaloniki (+6, =2, -3),
In 1990, at third board in the 29th Chess Olympiad (women) in Novi Sad (+5, =4, -3),
In 1992, at third board in the 30th Chess Olympiad (women) in Manila (+3, =6, -2).
Sheila Jackson played for England in the European Team Chess Championships:
In 1992, at second board in the 1st European Team Chess Championship (women) in Debrecen (+0, =3, -1).
In 1981, she was awarded the FIDE International Women Master (WIM) title and received the FIDE International Women Grandmaster (WGM) title seven year later.
In 1991, in Subotica Sheila Jackson participated in the Women’s World Chess Championship Interzonal Tournament where she stayed at 31st place.
Since 2000, participate in chess tournaments rarely.
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:
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) is an American corporate executive and International Master in chess.
Born in New York City 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. He was convicted after three trials, but the conviction was reversed on appeal and dismissed with prejudice. 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. 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. 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.
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) 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.
Born in Bournville, 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.
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. 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. Tylor played in the top section, the Hastings Premier, nine times beginning in 1930/1. His best finish was 6th= in 1936/7. He was first reserve for the English team at the Hamburg 1930 Chess Olympiad.
Tylor won the British Correspondence Chess Championship in 1932, 1933, and 1934. 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. 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.
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. He died in Oxford on 23 October 1968.
We offer birthday greetings to GM John Shaw this day, October 16th in 1968
From Wikipedia :
John K. Shaw (born 16 October 1968) is a Scottish chess player. He won the Scottish Championship in 1995 (tied), 1998 and 2000 (tied). He is an uncommon example of great progress in an adult chess player. In 1988, at age 19, his rating was 1700, which is the strength of a slightly above average Scottish chess player. He was awarded the International Master title in 1999, and the International Grandmaster title in 2006.
To qualify for the GM title, he gained three norms at Gibraltar 2003, Calvia Olympiad 2004 and 4NCL Season 2005/6.
A writer of chess books, Shaw is also the Chief Editor of the publishing house Quality Chess.
We send best wishes to Dr. Jonathan Penrose OBE on his birthday, this day (October 7th) in 1933.
From Wikipedia :
Jonathan Penrose, OBE (born 7 October 1933, in Colchester) is an English chess Grandmaster and International Correspondence Chess Grandmaster (1983) who won the British Chess Championship ten times between 1958 and 1969. He is the son of Lionel Penrose, a world-famous professor of genetics, the grandson of the physiologist John Beresford Leathes, and brother of Roger Penrose and Oliver Penrose. He is a psychologist and university lecturer by profession, with a PhD.
Learning the game at age four, he was a member of Hampstead Chess Club at twelve and British Boys (Under 18) Champion at just fourteen years of age. Chess was played by the entire Penrose family. His father was a composer of endgame studies and a strong player, as was his older brother Oliver.
By the age of seventeen, he was already acknowledged as a top prospect for British chess. Playing Hastings for the first time in 1950/51, he beat the French champion Nicolas Rossolimo and at Southsea in 1950, defeated both Efim Bogoljubov and Savielly Tartakower. In 1952/1953 he shared the first place at Hastings with Harry Golombek, Antonio Medina García and Daniel Yanofsky.
Penrose earned the International Master title in 1961 and was the leading British player for several years in the 1960s and early 1970s, surpassing the achievement of Henry Ernest Atkins by winning the British Championship a record number of times. He was widely considered to be of grandmaster strength, but did not achieve the grandmaster title during his active playing career, despite some notable victories. This was mainly due to his choosing to remain amateur and placing his lecturing as a first priority. In effect, it meant that he played few international tournaments and frequently turned down invitations to prestigious tournaments such as Hastings. In 1993 he was awarded the grandmaster title by FIDE.
He competed in eight Chess Olympiads between 1952 and 1962, then at the Olympiads of 1968 and 1970, frequently posting excellent scores, including +9−1=7 in 1962 (Varna), and +10−0=5 in 1968 (Lugano). On both of these occasions, he won an individual silver medal on first board; in 1968, his score was bettered only by the World Champion, Tigran Petrosian.
Penrose-Tal, Leipzig (1960): final position
At the Leipzig 1960 Olympiad, he defeated then-World Champion Mikhail Tal with the white pieces in a Modern Benoni:
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 c5 4.d5 exd5 5.cxd5 d6 6.e4 g6 7.Bd3 Bg7 8.Nge2 O-O 9.O-O a6 10.a4 Qc7 11.h3 Nbd7 12.f4 Re8 13.Ng3 c4 14.Bc2 Nc5 15.Qf3 Nfd7 16.Be3 b5 17.axb5 Rb8 18.Qf2 axb5 19.e5 dxe5 20.f5 Bb7 21.Rad1 Ba8 22.Nce4 Na4 23.Bxa4 bxa4 24.fxg6 fxg6 25.Qf7+ Kh8 26.Nc5 Qa7 27.Qxd7 Qxd7 28.Nxd7 Rxb2 29.Nb6 Rb3 30.Nxc4 Rd8 31.d6 Rc3 32.Rc1 Rxc1 33.Rxc1 Bd5 34.Nb6 Bb3 35.Ne4 h6 36.d7 Bf8 37.Rc8 Be7 38.Bc5 Bh4 39.g3 1–0. 
This victory made Penrose the first British player to beat a reigning world champion since Joseph Henry Blackburne defeated Emanuel Lasker in 1899.
Penrose suffered from nerves, and he collapsed at the 1970 Olympiad in the midst of a tense game. Consequently, he moved on to correspondence chess, where he was successful, earning the International Master (IMC) title in 1980 and the grandmaster (GMC) title in 1983. He led his country to victory in the 9th Correspondence Olympiad (1982 – 1987).
Jonathan Penrose was awarded the OBE in 1971.