Get into Chess in 2020?

FIDE wishes you Happy 2020! Are you interested in getting into chess this year?

Sign up for a chess class

Annex Chess Club in downtown Toronto has chess classes for adults and children – for absolute beginners or for those who want to take their game to the next level.

Register online for a 7-week class today! A new winter session starts January 13.

Come out to the club this Monday

We also have CFC-rated tournament games and casual chess on Monday nights. Come check us out!

Happy New Year from FIDE, the World Chess Federation!

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ACC Winter Swiss

The ACC Winter Swiss is a five-round ACC club tournament running from January 6 to February 3. It’s a CFC-rated tournament, divided in three sections, Crown, U1800, and U1400. Time control is 90 min/side with a 30-s increment.

New players can register on site each round by 7 pm. Email registration or bye requests before 6 pm.

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Round One – January 6

A new year, and a new tournament gets under way with 30 players registered.

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Round Two – January 13

Some additional players join, and 40 players total participate in Round Two. When the dust settles, it’s Michael Humphreys and Saimir Shabanaj tied for first in the Crown with 2.0/2; Ian Greig, Colton Belanger and Sihao Chen tied for first in U1800 with 2.0/2; and Alex Niestrawski alone in first in U1400 with 2.0/2.

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Round Three – January 20

With the cold and the snowfall over the weekend it feels much more like winter now. When the games are done, Saimir Shabanaj is alone in first in the Crown with 3.0/3; in U1800, Colton Belanger and Sihao Chen are tied for first with 3.0/3; and in U1400 Alex Niestrawski holds onto his lead with 2.5/3.

Here’s a quick Evans Gambit game from the middle section:

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Round Four – January 27

In the Crown, Saimir Shabanaj keeps an undisputed hold on first with a perfect score of 4.0/4. In U1800 Sihao Chen defeats rival Colton Belanger with lightning-fast play to take sole first with 4.0/4. And in U1400, Christopher Charles defeats the leader to take a share of first with Bill Randle at 3.0/4.

Anything can happen in the last round!

Meanwhile, here’s a decisive Danish Gambit game from the top section

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Round Five – February 3

With Michael Humphreys defeating Saimir Shabanaj in the last round, both players finished tied with Ruth Joy Vinuya at 4.0/5. On the fourth tie-break (Bucholz Cut 1) Saimir Shabanaj takes first place.

Congratulations, Saimir!

See full results below.

Don’t miss the ACC February Blitz next week. Register on site by 7 pm. Email registration before 6 pm.

Ranking Cross-tables after Round 5

ACC Winter Swiss – Crown section

Rk. Name Rtg FED 1.Rd 2.Rd 3.Rd 4.Rd 5.Rd
1 Shabanaj Saimir 2133 ALB 6b1 2w1 5b1 9w1 3b0
2 Vinuya Ruth Joy 1857 PHI 9b1 1b0 4w1 5w1 14b1
3 Humphreys Michael 2325 CAN 11b1 15w1 1w1
4 Southam David 2216 CAN 5w0 8b1 2b0 13w1 -1
5 Gao Lucy 1795 CAN 4b1 12w½ 1w0 2b0 11w1
6 Furrow Matthew 1782 CAN 1w0 13b1 12b1 0
7 Struthers Matthew 2052 CAN 8w1 0 0
8 McSherry Peter 1776 CAN 7b0 4w0 9w0 11b1 -1
9 Ugodnikov Arkadiy 1766 CAN 2w0 11w½ 8b1 1b0 0
10 Chen Sihao 1658 CAN 13b1 0 0 0 0
11 Fines John 1822 CAN 3w0 9b½ 8w0 5b0
12 Sobrevilla Ruben 2045 USA 5b½ 6w0 0 0
13 Balal Niaki Sadegh 0 CAN 10w0 6w0 -1 4b0 0
14 Sutton Michael 1700 CAN 0 0 2w0
15 Belanger Colton 1673 CAN 0 3b0 0 0 0

See full Crown results on the Chess-results server.

ACC Winter Swiss – U1800 section

Rk. Name Rtg FED 1.Rd 2.Rd 3.Rd 4.Rd 5.Rd Pts.
1 Chen Sihao 1658 CAN -1 4w1 14b1 2b1 3w1 5
2 Belanger Colton 1673 CAN 23w1 -1 3b1 1w0 4b1 4
3 Greig Ian 0 CAN 7w1 12b1 2w0 6b1 1b0 3
4 D’Souza Carina 1502 CAN 22w1 1b0 12w1 10b1 2w0 3
5 Patton Mark A. 1375 CAN 13w0 23b1 24w- 15w1 12b1 3
6 Moiseev Alex 1256 CAN 17w½ 19b1 11b½ 3w0 14b1 3
7 Jevtic Dragan 1496 CAN 3b0 21w1 9b1 3
8 Hillier Paul 0 CAN 18w1 10b0 17w1 3
9 Lambert Peter 1471 CAN 12w0 22b1 17w½ 11b1 7w0 2.5
10 Schyngera Eli 1428 CAN 21b1 8w1 4w0 0 2.5
11 Helwig Frank 1715 CAN 17b½ 6w½ 9w0 18b1 2.5
12 Ali Shafkat 1647 CAN 9b1 3w0 4b0 18w1 5w0 2
13 Costales Dan 1571 CAN 5b1 0 0 0 22w1 2
14 Diemer Ulli 1574 CAN 24b1 1w0 17b½ 6w0 2
15 Schneider Terra Arthur 1698 CAN 0 5b0 19w1 2
16 Phillips Arthur 1546 CAN 0 0 21b1 2
17 Supol George 1536 CAN 6b½ 11w½ 9b½ 14w½ 8b0 2
18 Tuchow Ryan 1419 CAN 8b0 19w1 12b0 11w0 1.5
19 Armstrong Robert J. 1597 CAN 6w0 18b0 22w1 15b0 1.5
20 Donegan Lawrence 1110 CAN 0 0 0 23b1 0 1
21 Angelinos Panagiotis 0 CAN 10w0 22b½ 7b0 16w0 1
22 Guo Richard 1249 CAN 4b0 9w0 21w½ 19b0 13b0 0.5
23 Dixon Javier 1490 CAN 2b0 5w0 20w0 0 0.5
24 Teodorosyon Aras 1149 CAN 14w0 5b- 0 0 0.5

See full U1800 results on the Chess-results server.

ACC Winter Swiss – U1400 section

Rk. Name Rtg FED 1.Rd 2.Rd 3.Rd 4.Rd 5.Rd Pts.
1 Stefanovich-Thomson Alexis 1239 CAN 2w1 3b0 11w1 4w½ 9b1 3.5
2 Charles Christopher 1286 CAN 1b0 10w1 7b+ 5b1 6w0 3
3 Randle Bill 1275 CAN 1w1 4b1 0 3
4 Teram Eli 989 CAN 6w1 3w0 1b½ -1 3
5 Niestrawski Alex 1244 CAN 10b1 7w1 8b½ 2w0 0 2.5
6 Donegan Lawrence 1110 CAN 4b0 10w0 -1 2b1 2.5
7 Fuller Chris 1269 CAN 9w1 5b0 2w- 0 10w1 2
8 Lau Joshua 1081 CAN 11b1 5w½ 0 0 2
9 Lillico Margarita 1036 CAN 7b0 0 10b1 1w0 1.5
10 Souchko Larissa 826 CAN 5w0 2b0 6b1 9w0 7b0 1
11 Harvey Paul 749 CAN 8w0 1b0 0 1

See full U1400 results on the Chess-results server.

Feature image by Andre Gaulin on Unsplash – The frozen Don River. Eastend Toronto, Canada.

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CANCELLED – Chess lecture by Liza Orlova – Jan 6

UPDATE – this event is now cancelled. We regret to inform you that Liza has come down with a cold/flu and is unable to give her lecture.

Annex is starting the new year off with a special guest lecture by Woman National Master / WCM Liza Orlova.

Liza won numerous regional titles as a young player in Toronto, and played on the Canadian Women’s Olympiad team. She also founded Pub Chess Toronto. More recently, she has published a beginner chess book, streams on Twitch, and has launched the Vancouver Chess Club. Liza currently lives in Vancouver, where she teaches chess and studies graphic design.

Chess for Beginners, by Liza Orlova, Nov 2018

Liza’s lecture will cover an exciting game between four-time US Champion Yasser Seirawan and former World Champion Anatoly Karpov. If you bring your copy of her chess book (#1 on Amazon Kindle and #3 for paperback) – she’ll be happy to sign it for you.


Monday January 6
459A Bloor Street West, Toronto
Doors open – 6:00pm
Free lecture – 6:30-7:30pm
Regular club tournament – 7:30 (sign up before 7:00)

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Ted Winick Memorial Rapid Chess Championship – Apr 26

Annex Chess Club and the Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre are partnering to present a Rapid Chess Championship on Sunday April 26 in memory of Ted Winick.

A consummate promoter of community and fellowship, Ted is remembered as the founder of Annex Chess Club and an important foundational member of the JCC. He is deeply missed and fondly remembered by many in the various Toronto communities he was so important to.

The event is in support of the Miles Nadal JCC and the chess educational organization, Chess Institute of Canada, which became Ted’s life work. Please contact us for details about how you can join in supporting these organizations in Ted’s memory through this event.

The tournament will be held in the beautiful Al Green Theatre within the JCC.

When: Sunday April 26, 2020
Check-in: 11:00-11:30am
Style: 7 rounds in one single section
Schedule: 12-2pm Rds 1-3. 2:30-5:30pm Rds 4-7
Time Control: 9 min + 3-sec increment per move from move 1
Rating: CFC and FIDE-rated. Up-to-date CFC membership required.
Organizer: Annex Chess Club
Chief Arbiter: Alex Ferreira

Link for Registration coming soon!

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ACC Holiday Rapid – Dec 16

In lieu of our regular slow-chess tournament, on our last club night of the year, December 16, the 2019 Holiday Rapid is a one-night six-round tournament – in one big section, at a time control of 9 min each with a 3-sec increment.

Cost: FREE for ACC members, $15 for non-members ($10 for juniors). Add $12 for CFC ($6 for juniors) if you’re not a CFC member.

28 players participated in this year’s Holiday Rapid. The winner was Raymond Gao with 5.5/6. Congratulations, Raymond!

Full results are below.

Have a great holiday, and we’ll see you next year, January 6!

Final Ranking Cross-tables after Round 6

ACC Holiday Rapid 2019

Rk. Name Rtg FED 1.Rd 2.Rd 3.Rd 4.Rd 5.Rd 6.Rd Pts.
1 Gao Raymond 2049 CAN 21w1 8b1 7w1 5b1 2b1 4w½ 5.5
2 Humphreys Michael 2325 CAN 19w1 12b1 6w1 3b1 1w0 10b1 5
3 Shabanaj Saimir 2087 ALB 20b1 13w1 11b1 2w0 12b1 8w1 5
4 Belcadi Salim 1592 CAN 28b1 6w0 17b1 11w1 7w1 1b½ 4.5
5 Bitton Michael 1966 CAN 9b1 14w0 15b1 1w0 16b1 12w1 4
6 Ivanov Venci 1784 CAN 15w1 4b1 2b0 13w1 8b0 14w1 4
7 Furrow Matthew 1782 CAN 16b1 25w1 1b0 14w1 4b0 13w1 4
8 Gao Lucy 1687 CAN 27b1 1w0 18w1 21b1 6w1 3b0 4
9 Gao William (zhimao) 1505 CAN 5w0 26b1 23w1 12b0 20w1 11w1 4
10 Ugodnikov Arkadiy 1753 CAN 23w0 18b½ 24w1 19b1 21w1 2w0 3.5
11 Mcsherry Peter 1776 CAN 22w1 23b1 3w0 4b0 18w1 9b0 3
12 Ab-Barin Hooshang 1757 CAN 17b1 2w0 14b1 9w1 3w0 5b0 3
13 Chen Sihao 1658 CAN 26w1 3b0 22w1 6b0 24w1 7b0 3
14 Diemer Ulli 1574 CAN 24w1 5b1 12w0 7b0 23w1 6b0 3
15 Jevtic Dragan 1496 CAN 6b0 28w1 5w0 24b0 26w1 22b1 3
16 Moiseev Alex 1256 CAN 7w0 24b0 28w1 22b1 5w0 23b1 3
17 Denning Keith 1167 CAN 12w0 19b1 4w0 18b0 28w1 21b1 3
18 Guo Richard 1271 CAN 10w½ 8b0 17w1 11b0 24b1 3
19 Supol George 1536 CAN 2b0 17w0 27b1 10w0 25b0 26w1 2
20 Armstrong Robert J. 1534 CAN 3w0 22b0 26w1 23b0 9b0 27w1 2
21 D’souza Carina 1515 CAN 1b0 27w1 25b1 8w0 10b0 17w0 2
22 Niestrawski Alex 1244 CAN 11b0 20w1 13b0 16w0 27b1 15w0 2
23 Tuong Rose 1123 CAN 10b1 11w0 9b0 20w1 14b0 16w0 2
24 Kosic Mike 0 CAN 14b0 16w1 10b0 15w1 13b0 18w0 2
25 Sarfraz Amer 0 CAN -1 7b0 21w0 26b0 19w1 0 2
26 Souchko Larissa 828 CAN 13b0 9w0 20b0 25w1 15b0 19b0 1
27 Lillico Margarita 1079 CAN 8w0 21b0 19w0 28b1 22w0 20b0 1
28 Harvey Paul 749 CAN 4w0 15b0 16b0 27w0 17b0 -1 1

Results are also posted on Chess-Results. Thanks to everyone for coming out!

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Chess for everyone