The Dark Horse at Varsity Theatre – April 15

The Dark Horse opens in Toronto this Friday

THE DARK HORSE, a story of a brilliant but troubled New Zealand chess champion who finds purpose teaching underprivileged children about the rules of chess and life will be released at Cineplex Odeon Varsity Theatre in Toronto starting Friday, April 15th.

See trailer:

The film originally premiered in Canada at the Toronto International Film Festival and won Best Picture, Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actor and Best Score at the 2014 New Zealand Film Awards, Best Film at the 2015 Seattle International Film Festival (SIFF), 2015 San Francisco International Film Festival (SFIFF) and 2015 Rotterdam International Film Festival (IFFR), and was labeled by leading New Zealand critics as “One of the greatest New Zealand films ever made”.

Release Date – Friday, April 15, 2016 at the Cineplex Varsity Theatre in Toronto
Cast: Cliff Curtis, James Rolleston, Kirk Torrence
Synopsis: Based upon a powerful true story, The Dark Horse is the uplifting portrait of a man searching for the courage to lead, despite his struggles with mental illness. The film features a stunning, award-winning performance by Cliff Curtis (Whale Rider, Blow, “Fear the Walking Dead”) as Genesis “Gen” Potini, a brilliant but troubled New Zealand chess champion who finds purpose by teaching underprivileged children about the rules of chess and life. After years in and out of mental institutions, Genesis is released into the care of his estranged brother Ariki (Wayne Hapi) and thrust into his volatile gang lifestyle. Seeking to escape this toxic environment, Genesis finds solace by volunteering at the Eastern Knights chess club and sharing his gift with the disadvantaged Maori children of his community.

THE DARK HORSE Poster1

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ACC Spring Training Swiss

It’s time to get in shape for the season!

The Spring Training Swiss, a 5-round regular club tournament, runs on Monday nights, April 4 to May 2, with games starting at 7:30 pm.

Since quite a few of our top players are participating in the Toronto Closed Chess Championship on Monday nights in April and May, this concurrent club event will be pared down to just two sections, Crown (minimum 1600) and Under-1700, to accommodate a smaller number of players.

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Round One – April 4

The tournament gets started with some of the new players in the Crown section scoring first-round upsets. Young Max England (1840), fresh from taking the Club Championship Reserve section, defeats William Li (2122), while another strong young player, Tigran Ghazarian (1754), who won the U1800 section in the previous event, defeats Armand Jess Mendoza (1917).

There are a number of upsets in the U1700 section as well. Adam Goldfarb (1333) defeats Bob Armstrong (1571), Gregory Szucs (1312) defeats Paul Muskat (1519), and Salim Belcadi (701) defeats Eli Teram (1123).

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Round Two – April 11

Both sections are now down to two-way ties!

In the Crown section, Tigran Ghazarian and Zhong Zhao have perfect 2.0/2 scores.

In the U1700 section, it’s Ulli Diemer and Adam Goldfarb with perfect 2.0/2 records.

Leaders will face off in Round 3!

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Round Three – April 18

A draw on the top board between Tigran Ghazarian and Zhong Zhao allows Alex Ferreiera, with a win over William Li, to join the leaders at 2.5/3.

Meanwhile, in U1700 action, Ulli Diemer takes his third win in a row to lead the section with 3.0/3, while Adam Goldfarb and Mark Patton trail by just half a point at 2.5/3.

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Round Four – April 25

See results below:

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Round Five – May 2

New players are welcome in any round! Please register before 7:00 pm to make sure you’re paired for the round.

Ranking crosstables after Round 4

ACC Spring Training Swiss: Crown section

Rk. Name Rtg FED 1.Rd 2.Rd 3.Rd 4.Rd Pts.
1 Ferreira Alex T. 2127 CAN 7w1 4b½ 9w1 -1 3.5
2 Zhao Zhong 1671 CAN -1 3w1 5w½ 6b1 3.5
3 Wiebe Daniel 2096 CAN 11w1 2b0 4w1 9b1 3
4 England Max 1840 CAN 9w1 1w½ 3b0 11b1 2.5
5 Ghazarian Tigran 1754 CAN 6w1 12b+ 2b½ 7b0 2.5
6 Mendoza Armand Jess 1917 CAN 5b0 7w1 11b1 2w0 2
7 Ugodnikov Arkadiy 1903 CAN 1b0 6b0 10w½ 5w1 1.5
8 Stefanovic Miroslav 2199 CAN 10b1 0 0 1.5
9 Li William 2122 CAN 4b0 10w1 1b0 3w0 1
10 Stein Jacob 1905 CAN 8w0 9b0 7b½ 1
11 Amirirad Kamran 1784 CAN 3b0 -1 6w0 4w0 1
12 Marshall Fernando 1991 CAN 5w- 0 0 0.5

See full details at Chess-Results.com

ACC Spring Training Swiss: U1700 section

Rk. Name Rtg FED 1.Rd 2.Rd 3.Rd 4.Rd Pts.
1 Diemer Ulli 1585 CAN 9b1 10w1 7b1 6w1 4
2 Belcadi Salim 701 CAN 21w1 3b0 17w1 11b1 3
3 Patton Mark A. 1417 CAN 2w1 8b1 5w½ 3
4 Giffen Glenn 0 CAN 13b1 10w1 3
5 Armstrong Robert J. 1571 CAN 6w0 12b1 9w1 3b½ 2.5
6 Goldfarb Adam 1333 CAN 5b1 13w1 1b0 2.5
7 Chen Harry (siqi) 1483 CAN 18b1 1w0 15b+ 2.5
8 Gelowitz Mark A. 1391 CAN 20w1 3w0 14b1 2.5
9 Jevtic Dragan 1381 CAN 1w0 21b1 5b0 17w1 2
10 Szucs Gregory 1312 CAN 17w1 1b0 19w1 4b0 2
11 Tobin Jacob 897 CAN 18b1 2w0 2
12 Halim Howard 1249 CAN 13b0 5w0 19b1 1.5
13 Morrison Richard 1490 CAN 12w1 6b0 4w0 1.5
14 Allen Joshua 1401 CAN 16b½ 8w0 1.5
15 Finkelstein Michael 1165 CAN 7w- 1.5
16 Supol George 1398 CAN 14w½ 0 1.5
17 Muskat Paul 1519 CAN 10b0 18w1 2b0 9b0 1
18 Souchko Larissa 1146 CAN 7w0 17b0 11w0 21b1 1
19 Tobin Larry 714 CAN 10b0 12w0 1
20 Pancer Jeff 1092 CAN 8b0 0 1
21 Teram Eli 1123 CAN 2b0 9w0 18w0 0.5

See full details at Chess-Results.com

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ACC is closed March 28

We’re closed Monday March 28, 2016, Easter Monday.

We’ll be open again April 4 with casual chess, chess classes, a new club tournament, and Rd 1 of the Toronto Closed Chess Championship.

Don’t miss the big tournament Easter weekend at Hart House!

Have a great holiday, Toronto chess players!

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2016 Toronto Closed Chess Championship

toronto skyline

It’s the annual City Chess Championship, sanctioned by the Greater Toronto Chess League.

Eight top GTA players are invited to play in a Championship Round Robin (top 8 players who register) to determine the 2016 City Champion.

April 4 to May 30, 2016

For all inquiries and requests, email: info@annexchessclub.com

Congratulations to this year’s players!

No. Name Rtg FED 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Pts. Rk.
1 Southam David 2226 CAN * 0 1 0       1 2 5
2 Barron Michael 2342 CAN 1 * 1       0 0 2 6
3 Malakhovets Sergey 2097 CAN 0 0 *     0 0   0 8
4 Humphreys Michael 2361 CAN 1     * 0 0 0   1 7
5 Plotkin Victor 2430 CAN       1 * ½ ½ 1 3 2
6 Bellissimo Joseph 2249 CAN     1 1 ½ *   0 2.5 3
7 Ivanov Mike 2333 CAN   1 1 1 ½   *   3.5 1
8 Plotkin Mark 2276 CAN 0 1     0 1   * 2 4

May the best player win!

(Unfortunately, we did not receive sufficient entries to run a Reserve section.)

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Round One – April 4

It’s fighting chess right from the beginning! Round One sees no draws and three wins from the black side.

Top seed Victor Plotkin is off to a great start. He faces second seed Michael Humphreys and comes away with a full point. Meanwhile eighth seed Sergey Malakhovets is the underdog in every game, but the pressure is on his opponents to beat him; Joseph Bellissimo manages to do so in Round One. On the other boards, Dave Southam and Mike Ivanov score slight rating upsets.

Bo. No. Rtg Name Result Name Rtg No.
1 1 2226 Southam David 1 – 0 Plotkin Mark 2276 8
2 2 2342 Barron Michael 0 – 1 Ivanov Mike 2333 7
3 3 2097 Malakhovets Sergey 0 – 1 Bellissimo Joseph 2249 6
4 4 2361 Humphreys Michael 0 – 1 Plotkin Victor 2430 5

Games from Round One

Games are posted on Chess5.

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Round Two – April 11

Through two rounds, there is yet to be a single draw. Top seed, Victor Plotkin, scores a full point against Mark Plotkin to stay perfect at 2.0/2, while Joseph Bellissimo and Mike Ivanov keep pace.

Bo. No. Rtg Name Result Name Rtg No.
1 8 2276 Plotkin Mark 0 – 1 Plotkin Victor 2430 5
2 6 2249 Bellissimo Joseph 1 – 0 Humphreys Michael 2361 4
3 7 2333 Ivanov Mike 1 – 0 Malakhovets Sergey 2097 3
4 1 2226 Southam David 0 – 1 Barron Michael 2342 2

Games from Round Two

Games are posted on Chess5.

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Round Three – April 18

Mike Ivanov scores his third win in a row to take the lead with 3.0/3, while Joseph Bellissimo draws his game against Victor Plotkin, so both fall half a point back at 2.5/3. It’ll be a big match-up next round when leader Mike Ivanov faces top seed Victor Plotkin head to head!

Bo. No. Rtg Name Result Name Rtg No.
1 2 2342 Barron Michael 0 – 1 Plotkin Mark 2276 8
2 3 2097 Malakhovets Sergey 0 – 1 Southam David 2226 1
3 4 2361 Humphreys Michael 0 – 1 Ivanov Mike 2333 7
4 5 2430 Plotkin Victor ½ – ½ Bellissimo Joseph 2249 6

Games from Round Three

Games are posted on Chess5.

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Round Four – April 25

Mike Ivanov stays in clear first at 3.5/4 with a draw against Victor Plotkin, who trails by just half a point (and is also undefeated) at 3.0/4. Joseph Bellissimo, who loses to Mark Plotkin, still stays in third with 2.5/4. And Michael Humphreys, who hasn’t had a good start in the event, finally gets on the scoreboard with a win over David Southam

Bo. No. Rtg Name Result Name Rtg No.
1 8 2276 Plotkin Mark 1 – 0 Bellissimo Joseph 2249 6
2 7 2333 Ivanov Mike ½ – ½ Plotkin Victor 2430 5
3 1 2226 Southam David 0 – 1 Humphreys Michael 2361 4
4 2 2342 Barron Michael 1 – 0 Malakhovets Sergey 2097 3

Games from Round Four

Games are posted on Chess5.

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Round Five Pairings – May 2

Bo. No. Rtg Name Result Name Rtg No.
1 3 2097 Malakhovets Sergey Plotkin Mark 2276 8
2 4 2361 Humphreys Michael Barron Michael 2342 2
3 5 2430 Plotkin Victor Southam David 2226 1
4 6 2249 Bellissimo Joseph Ivanov Mike 2333 7

Future pairings and complete Toronto Closed results are available on chess-results.

Flyer:

2

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2016 Annex Chess Club Championship

Club Championship starts February 9

It’s time for another edition of our annual Club Championship! (Check out the club championship tag for past editions!)

Instead of the three sections our tournaments usually have, this one has just two larger sections, so hopefully everyone has a chance to play some new opponents – even if some of the games will be more mismatched!

The Championship section sees the top players at our club vie for the title of 2016 Club Champion! Michael Humphreys has held the honour for quite some time now – four years in a row! – but this could be the year he’s unseated! The Championship section will be FIDE-rated, and the minimum rating to enter the section is 1700.

The Reserve section sees players rated under 1800 compete for the title of 2016 Reserve Champion, as defending 2015 winner Greg Beal seeks to reclaim the title for another year! (Note that players rated 1700 to 1799 are normally placed in the Reserve section, but they can also opt to play up in the Championship section.)

Club Championship trophies

All are welcome!

All are welcome to join us for the event, but only full-year members are eligible to win the Club Champion and Reserve Champion titles. Winners’ names will be engraved on permanent trophies at the club.

Rounds are at 7:30 pm on six consecutive Monday evenings, starting February 9 and running to March 21. (Note, however, there is no round on Family Day, February 15.) New players are asked to please register by 7:00 to make sure that you’re paired for the night’s round.

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Round One – February 9

With larger sections, there are even greater mismatches in Round 1, but some of the underdogs still manage to come out on top!

In the Championship section, Fernando Marshall (1995) scores an upset victory over Sergey Malakhovets (2176).

And in the Reserve section, there’s even more turmoil as Zhong Zhao (1399) takes out Vinorth Vigneswaramoorthy (1664), Howard Halim (1068) is victorious over Dragan Jevtic (1555), and newcomer Gregory Szucs (unr.) defeats George Supol (1447)

Winners will face winners in Rd 2, February 22. (There is no round on February 15, as the club is CLOSED for Family Day.)

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Bellissimo-Li

Round Two – February 22

In the Championship section, it’s down to a two-way tie for the lead as only Dave Southam stays even with defending Club Champion Michael Humphreys after second-seed Joseph Bellissimo is upset by William Li and third-seed Jon Yu takes a bye. Humphreys and Southam both have 2.0/2.

In the Reserve section, it’s a four-way tie at the top as Bob Armstrong, Ulli Diemer, and Max England keep pace with defending 2015 Reserve winner Greg Beal at 2.0/2.

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Round Three – February 29

2016 is a leap year, and yes, we’re spending that extra day playing chess!

In the Championship, Michael Humphreys defeats Dave Southam to take sole possession of first place with 3.0/3. Five players are hot on his heels, a point behind at 2.0/3. Anything can happen in three more rounds.

In the Reserve section, Max England and Bob Armstrong are tied for the lead with 3.0/3. Marko Stevelic is a half point at 2.5/3, and another eight players are waiting in the wings with 2.0/2. That makes a lot of contenders not ruled out!

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Round Four – March 7

Out of nowhere, Hugh Siddeley scores a win over Michael Humphreys to take equal first at 3.0/4 – with a better tie break based on the head-to-head result. Wow, this just got a lot more interesting!

Before this defeat, Humphreys had an unbeaten run of +22 =5 (including 3 wins against Siddeley)!! Of course, for many, he’s still a big favourite to win his 5th in a row!

In the U1800 section, Max England defeats Bob Armstrong to take sole first with a perfect 4.0/4. Can he survive another two rounds?

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Round Five – March 14

He’s back in the lead! On the top boards of the Championship section, Michael Humphreys squeezes a win from a rook ending against Alex Ferreira (see game below) while Hugh Siddeley draws Armand Jess Mendoza.

So Humphreys goes into the final round with 4.0/5 and a half-point lead over Siddeley, who stands at 3.5. Among the 3.0 group, William Li and Daniel Wiebe are the only players in the top six who have not yet faced Humphreys, so one of them is likely to get his chance in the final round.

In the Reserves, Max England draws his game against top seed Kamran Amirirad to hold sole possession of first. England enters the last round with 4.5/5 and a half-point lead over Zhong Zhao, who has 4.0. The two have not yet played, so they will likely face off in the final round.

Game of the Week

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Round Six – March 21

Michael Humphreys wins his game to hold sole first place at 5.0/6, so he earns the title of Club Champion once again – five times in a row! Congratulations, Michael!

Also winning their last round games are Dave Southam and William Li (see game below) who finish second and third with 4.0/6.

And the Reserve winner, with another victory in Round 6, is 10-year-old Max England, finishing undefeated with 5.5/6. He’s a junior who’s been playing at Annex for a few years now, starting out in the under-1500 section. Congratulations, Max! What a great accomplishment!

maxenglandtedwinick20160321

Finishing in second and third with 4.5/6 are Bob Armstrong and Kamran Amirirad.

See complete results below.

Game of the Week

The club is closed March 28, but a new regular club tournament starts April 4, alongside the Toronto Closed – games start at 7:30 pm. New players are always welcome: register by 7:00 to make sure you’re paired!


Final Standings after Round Six

SwissSys Standings. Annex Chess Club Championship 2016: Championship section

# Name Rtng Rd 1 Rd 2 Rd 3 Rd 4 Rd 5 Rd 6 Tot
1 Michael Humphreys 2349 W6 (w) W9 (b) W2 (w) L4 (b) W10 (w) W8 (b) 5.0
2 David Southam 2221 W16 (b) W4 (w) L1 (b) D8 (w) D5 (b) W6 (w) 4.0
3 William Li 1960 D14 (w) W5 (b) D15 (w) L10 (b) W9 (w) W4 (b) 4.0
4 Hugh Siddeley 2085 W11 (w) L2 (b) W14 (b) W1 (w) D6 (b) L3 (w) 3.5
5 Joseph Bellissimo 2257 D8 (b) L3 (w) W12 (b) H— (-) D2 (w) W11 (w) 3.5
6 Armand Jess Mendoza 2076 L1 (b) D12 (w) B— (-) W9 (b) D4 (w) L2 (b) 3.0
7 Miroslav Stefanovic 2029 L13 (b) H— (-) L10 (w) W12 (w) H— (-) W14 (b) 3.0
8 Daniel Wiebe 2064 D5 (w) W10 (b) H— (-) D2 (b) H— (-) L1 (w) 3.0
9 Fernando Marshall 1995 W12 (b) L1 (w) D11 (b) L6 (w) L3 (b) W16 (w) 2.5
10 Alex T. Ferreira 2126 H— (-) L8 (w) W7 (b) W3 (w) L1 (b) U— (-) 2.5
11 Tigran Ghazarian 1718 L4 (b) B— (-) D9 (w) D16 (w) H— (-) L5 (b) 2.5
12 Sergey Malakhovets 2176 L9 (w) D6 (b) L5 (w) L7 (b) W16 (b) W17 (w) 2.5
13 Jonathan Yu 2237 W7 (w) H— (-) H— (-) U— (-) U— (-) U— (-) 2.0
14 Daniel Zotkin 2094 D3 (b) H— (-) L4 (w) H— (-) D15 (b) L7 (w) 2.0
15 Josh Guo 2250 H— (-) H— (-) D3 (b) U— (-) D14 (w) U— (-) 2.0
16 Arkadiy Ugodnikov 2000 L2 (w) H— (-) H— (-) D11 (b) L12 (w) L9 (b) 1.5
17 Jacob Stein 1894 H— (-) H— (-) U— (-) U— (-) U— (-) L12 (b) 1.0

SwissSys Standings. Annex Chess Club Championship 2016: Reserve section

# Name Rtng Rd 1 Rd 2 Rd 3 Rd 4 Rd 5 Rd 6 Tot
1 Max England 1667 W15 (b) W22 (w) W7 (b) W2 (w) D3 (b) W4 (w) 5.5
2 Robert J. Armstrong 1526 W11 (w) W3 (w) W16 (b) L1 (b) D7 (w) W8 (b) 4.5
3 Kamran Amirirad 1798 W30 (w) L2 (b) W12 (w) W8 (b) D1 (w) W7 (b) 4.5
4 Zhong Zhao 1399 W10 (b) L7 (w) W19 (b) W12 (w) W5 (w) L1 (b) 4.0
5 Harry [Siqi] Chen 1437 H— (-) H— (-) W25 (w) W16 (w) L4 (b) W10 (b) 4.0
6 Howard Halim 1068 W14 (w) L12 (b) H— (-) W9 (b) L10 (w) W13 (b) 3.5
7 Ulli Diemer 1557 W29 (w) W4 (b) L1 (w) W10 (w) D2 (b) L3 (w) 3.5
8 Marko Stevelic 1321 H— (-) W11 (b) W9 (w) L3 (w) W14 (b) L2 (w) 3.5
9 Richard Morrison 1500 W24 (b) H— (-) L8 (b) L6 (w) W17 (w) W14 (b) 3.5
10 Vinorth Vigneswaramoorthy 1664 L4 (w) W29 (b) W20 (w) L7 (b) W6 (b) L5 (w) 3.0
11 Larissa Souchko 999 L2 (b) L8 (w) L15 (b) W28 (w) B— (-) W27 (b) 3.0
12 Henry XianRui Zhang 1189 H— (-) W6 (w) L3 (b) L4 (b) H— (-) W19 (w) 3.0
13 Mark A. Gelowitz 1394 L16 (w) W23 (b) H— (-) H— (-) W19 (b) L6 (w) 3.0
14 Dragan Jevtic 1555 L6 (b) W15 (w) W26 (b) H— (-) L8 (w) L9 (w) 2.5
15 Joshua Allen 1406 L1 (w) L14 (b) W11 (w) H— (-) U— (-) W20 (b) 2.5
16 Greg Beal 1643 W13 (b) W19 (w) L2 (w) L5 (b) U— (-) U— (-) 2.0
17 Adam Goldfarb 1338 H— (-) H— (-) U— (-) W24 (w) L9 (b) U— (-) 2.0
18 Michael Finkelstein 1067 H— (-) H— (-) X22 (-) U— (-) U— (-) U— (-) 2.0
19 Gregory Szucs unr. W23 (w) L16 (b) L4 (w) W20 (b) L13 (w) L12 (b) 2.0
20 Benjamin Thalman 1331 H— (-) H— (-) L10 (b) L19 (w) W21 (b) L15 (w) 2.0
21 Marcus Wilker 1625 H— (-) H— (-) U— (-) U— (-) L20 (w) W23 (b) 2.0
22 Akop Tozlian 1500 W28 (w) L1 (b) F18 (-) U— (-) U— (-) U— (-) 1.0
23 George Supol 1447 L19 (b) L13 (w) H— (-) H— (-) U— (-) L21 (w) 1.0
24 Jacob Tobin 873 L9 (w) H— (-) H— (-) L17 (b) U— (-) U— (-) 1.0
25 Alex Moiseev 677 H— (-) H— (-) L5 (b) U— (-) U— (-) U— (-) 1.0
26 Jeff Pancer 1097 H— (-) H— (-) L14 (w) U— (-) U— (-) U— (-) 1.0
27 Salim Belcadi unr. H— (-) H— (-) U— (-) U— (-) U— (-) L11 (w) 1.0
28 Larry Tobin 694 L22 (b) H— (-) H— (-) L11 (b) U— (-) U— (-) 1.0
29 Christopher Field 1195 L7 (b) L10 (w) U— (-) U— (-) U— (-) U— (-) 0.0
30 Volkan Eryildir 1420 L3 (b) U— (-) U— (-) U— (-) U— (-) U— (-) 0.0

Legend

W = win (e.g., W9 means a win against player 9 – worth 1 point)
L = loss (0 pt)
D = draw (½ pt)
H = ½-pt bye (requested in advance or assigned on registration, max 2 per player, not in final round)
B = 1-pt bye (“forced bye” – e.g., odd number of players)
U = 0-pt bye (e.g., when max ½-pt byes previously awarded, or in final round)
F = forfeit loss (0 pt)
X = forfeit win (1 pt)
(b) = game played with black pieces
(w) = game played with white pieces

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Chess for everyone