Monday, March 23, 2015

THOMSON CHESS FIESTA POSTPONED TO 7-8 NOVEMBER

As a mark of respect for our founding father, Mr Lee Kuan Yew, the Thomson Chess Fiesta shall be postponed to 7-8 November.

Participants who have signed up can get their refunds if they are unable to commit to the new date.

PLEASE DO NOT SEND ANYMORE ENTRIES FOR 28-29 MARCH. WE WILL RELEASE NEW FORMS CLOSER TO NOVEMBER.

Sorry for the inconvenience.


Thursday, March 19, 2015

MY STUDENTS AT THE 2015 NSI

THE GIRLS

The beige coloured entries are my private students while those in white are the ones I teach in schools in groups. 

3 of the 6 private students scored 6 points or more. Congratulations to Arshia on her 2nd placing in her first NSI! Cadence also did well to finish on 6 but Cheong Sue Lyn let slip another opportunity to finish in the top 3 despite a 5/5 on her first day. Complacency has struck yet again...

I am glad that Claire and Alyssa managed their scores, even when it is their first year with me. All that is required to do better is to have more game practice. The Thomson club sessions on Fridays have definitely helped. 


The RGPS girls did satisfactorily as many do not do much outside of their once a week CCA. Who knows what they can be capable of if they can devote more time to the game :-)

THE BOYS

My male private students fared better, with more achieving 6 pts. I Shiang came very close to challenging the Champion but nerves got in the way and he finished his game much too soon to give a fight. Preparation is very important when you are facing the top and it showed that the winner of the Junior Boys was the better prepared. Naython and Christian did themselves proud though they were just outside the top 20. Naython gave his all but could not overcome Jaryl Lee. Christian beat my other student David Tan, mainly because he put in more practice.




The performances of my students who scored below 5 pts were mainly attributed to lack of practice and insufficient preparation. I am sure if they had done that, they are all capable of getting at least 1.5 pts above their current score.

Quite a fair number of games were decided on players making illegal moves (ie not seeing a check or exposing their king in check). These are generally symptoms of inadequate game time as well as poor board vision on the player's part. Conscious effort must be put in to see the possible moves of every piece on the board or else this ailment cannot be overcome.

The private students who scored 5 pts or more are guaranteed a prize from me. Once again, congratulations!


Friday, March 13, 2015

HOW TO GET TO PASIR RIS SPORTS HALL ON TIME IN 2015

Reading this article will definitely save your children from zero-starting on March 17-18!



If you are coming via the PIE then TPE, exit at Loyang Ave and drive along till Pasir Ris Drive 3. Turn left into it and once past Downtown East on your right (about 1 km after turn from Loyang), you will see East Vale on your left and once past the river the Sports Hall is on the left turn into Pasir Ris Central.

Try NOT to alight your child at the Sports Hall Drop Off (see below). Imagine 800 students and estimated double the number of parents alighting from this driveway! Getting your child there will be a lot faster if you choose alternative drop offs.



One is at the side of East Vale and walk across the bridge to the Hall, Do not turn into Pasir Ris Central Rd for I am sure the  will be conjested on that day. The other is to alight at the Pasir Ris MRT station and walk across (about 5 minutes).



Another hassle free drop off is to turn left to Pasir Ris Drive 6 right after you past Downtown East. Keep right and  turn into block 407-408 which is the side where Hai Sing Catholic School is. There are lots of carparks there and once you are parked you can cross the Park Connector into the back of the Sports Centre.

Cross over to the Sports Hall
Block 408 end next to connector



















Here is the view of the drop-off point. The stairs to the Sports Hall are on the right
of the picture below.



The Sports Hall can hold the students but I think there are limited spaces for the parents.


The viewing gallery can at most sit about 150 to 180 people each side so many will have no alternative but to move.


Besides White Sands Shopping Centre (which should have the usual eateries), the Sports and Recreation Centre has got MacDonald's and Toastbox, while Downtown East is about 15 minutes walk away. There is an open air carpark opposite Downtown East which you can park for $4 for the whole day. Coupon parking applies at the carparks on Block 407-408. The Red lots there are available from 7am to 7pm. Alternatively you can try Downtown Park just after the Sports Hall on Pasir Ris Central but enter the carpark from Pasir Ris Drive 1 side and go towards Block 530D.

Other details to note:


  • Best to bring along groundsheets for the students to sit on, in the event that they are not allowed to stay in the Hall after their games.  
  • Lunch is not provided, so packing sandwiches may be easier.
  • Kids should remain within the Hall compound as it's hot weather nowadays and chances of getting heat stroke playing in the open field are higher.
All the best to the participants and accompanying persons!

Monday, March 9, 2015

MARCH 28-29 -> THOMSON CHESS FIESTA

The 2nd Thomson Chess Fiesta shall take place March 28-29 weekend. We are the only CC tournament applying incremental time controls for all events in the Fiesta.

Those interested can follow this link for more details


Sunday, February 8, 2015

Sunday, January 11, 2015

KICKOFF 2015 TOURNAMENT




The faces tell it all..prizes or none, on the students who took part in the Kickoff Tournament organised by SCF at the Toa Payoh Sports Centre on Sunday 11 January. 7 prize winners in the respective categories !

I want to congratulate Naython Tan on his superb performance today in the Cat 4G section, 2nd with 5.5 pts, as well as Soh Rui Yang though he finished on 5th by tiebreak. Good job boys! Andre and Ethan Chiam started their first tournament and I'm so proud of them after they watched Sue Lyn in action and learnt so much about taking their time to record their games and think. Ethan managed to record till move 35 and he was unexpectedly not crying over his loss. They have grown to learn how to deal with losses and I'm sure they will look forward to playing their next tournament. I Shiuo scored 4 pts while Jasper managed 2.5 pts.

I Shiuan and Sue Lyn are in Cat 2 and clearly the strength of the participants meant extra effort to win every game. Both lost against the Champion but scored 5 and 4.5 pts to finish 4th and 6th. Clearly Sue Lyn needs to be more focused on her games if she wants to progress further as watching other boards during the game is a definite no-no.

Jaryl in Cat 4F finished on 8th place with 3.5 while Qi Xuan could only get 3 pts and ended on 12th place.

Zhong Kai had a good run starting 3/3 but fell back in the second half and managed only 1 more point after. Good win against Arlan Cabe but this meant being paired against Tin Jingyao and FM Terekhov later and the strength told in the end. Qing Aun was the top scorer from VS with 5.5pts on 3rd.

A satisfying end to a day well spent!




Friday, January 2, 2015

PAWN POWER IN CHESS


Many may find this book archaic in presenting the study of pawn structure with its quirky terms like leucopenia, telestop, ram etc. But if you take that away and understand its content, Pawn Power is a classic book on pawn structures that no budding chess-player can avoid studying.

Evidently this came about when we were discussing a game between Cyrus Nisban and Lee Jun Wei. Someone opined that the position was wrongly played by Black having a Benoni pawn structure, where White broke through the centre with the advance e5. The pawn advance is thematic (at least to those who read the book). When discussing the position further, it seemed that Lee did not realise that his c8 bishop was a hindrance and his battle plan should involve the exchange of that bishop. Again, such understanding can only be attained if one were to read books like Pawn Power in Chess. 

The study of pawns pervades not only in the opening but also into the middlegame and endgame. Of course, computer analysis may do a lot to negate the weaknesses created by pawns in odd squares by counterbalancing it with piece pressure. However, as humans do not possess such visualising power when compared to the silicon monsters, what makes sense still will be the exploitation of pawn weaknesses as performed by the masters in their collection of best games. 

I recommend that the juniors take a serious look at this wonderful classic (until someone revises it by taking away the clinical terms).