Monday, October 12, 2009

Tennessee’s WMDs

It’s not often you see a 2600+ super GM and a recent U.S. chess champion on Board 2 of a USCL match, but that’s what it’ll look like this Wednesday night when the Tennessee Tempo throw everything they’ve got at the Chicago Blaze in an attempt to break their three-match losing streak against our Windy City squad.

It’ll be Jan vs. Jaan on Board 1, IM Jan van de Mortel of the Blaze against one of the nation’s strongest players, GM Jaan Ehlvest of Tennessee. On Board 2, Chicago’s IM-elect Florin Felecan won’t have it any easier, facing another of the nation’s strongest players, former U.S. Champion GM Alexander Shabalov, whom the Blaze have never faced before. Florin will have the Black pieces.

Here are the pairings. The Blaze players are in bold. We’ll have White on Boards 1 and 3 and Black on Boards 2 and 4.

Board 1
IM Jan van de Mortel (2456) vs. GM Jaan Ehlvest (2697)

Board 2
FM Florin Felecan (2430) vs. GM Alex Shabalov (2624)

Board 3
IM Angelo Young (2325) vs. FM John Bick (2260)

Board 4
Trevor Magness (2138) vs. Gerald Larson (2140)

Blaze Avg Rating: 2337 / Tempo Avg Rating:2430

Can the Tempo do it? Can they finally beat the Blaze with two top grandmasters? Do we stand a chance against such firepower? To find out, tune in Wednesday night at 7:00 Chicago time, on the Internet Chess Club, Chicago’s Midway Chess Club, and Twitter. Or better yet, come and cheer the team in person at the Skokie Holiday Inn. All fans are welcome. Go Blaze!

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