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paulalbert
Member since May-03-03 · Last seen Jun-25-17
**I am a serious player ( playing for about 65 years ) but better known as a chess patron: Trustee of the American Chess Foundation in NY ( now called Chess-in-the Schools) for 27 years until 2003. I am best known for providing the Paul M. Albert, Jr. Brilliancy Prizes for U.S. Chess Championship, both men's and women's ( when championships were separate ) from 1983 to 2003. All the 64 prize winning games are the basis for a book ( for which I wrote the Foreword ) by IM Danny Kopec ( whose summer chess camps I still attend ) and GM Lubomir Ftacnik titled "Winning the Won Game: Lessons from the Albert Brilliancy Prizes", published by Batsford in 2004. I also have been a financial supporter of military chess, especially in the past the U.S. Army Championship, reflecting my strong support of the U. S. military and status as a veteran U.S. Army Artillery Officer. Being an Eagle Scout and long time supporter of the Boy Scouts, I became a Chess Merit Badge Counselor when the badge was instituted a few years ago with the advocacy particularly of Jeanne Sinquefield. More recently I have been sponsoring events at the Marshall Chess Club and at the Chess Cub of Fairfield County, CT (see below) as well as continuing general financial support of chess.**

** My rating is a modest 1400+ reflecting that business [investment banker, capital market consultant, family hedge fund manager, and corporate board director for 50 years and not yet fully retired], family, and military obligations prevented me from playing rated games at all for 40 years. Even now, with family investment work and an intensely anti-chess spouse, playing in a rated tournament in August in 2010,2011, and 2012 is the best I have been able to do. Although some with whom I play feel my official rating does not reflect my knowledge and ability, and I do beat 1600 and 1700 players in rated tournaments, the fatigue and inconsistency of being in my seventies, losing to highly talented ( but surprisingly low rated ) youngsters, and seldom being able to play rated games, makes rating progress difficult. I was encouraged by my last 2012 tournament results; playing all higher rated players I added 60 rating points and was approaching 1500, so perhaps not all hope of further progress is lost. My draw, but long ago, against GM Roman Dzindzhichashvili in a simul reflects that I was not a complete patzer ( Dzindzhi thought I was a 2000 player ). However, playing in the bigger tournaments at July 4th, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter is off limits from a family perspective, and even I have reservations about playing chess on Christmas, Good Friday and Easter Sunday, even if I could.**

** As my posts frequently reflect,I have had the honor and pleasure over the past 60 years of meeting many of the world's great and near great players including on May 17th, 2010 for the first time Magnus Carlsen ( and his father ) and again Karpov and Kasparov at the fundraiser in New York City for the Karpov run for FIDE President. A couple years later I also got to play Magnus in a simul at the Marshall Chess Club. Others I have met include: Adams,Agdestein,Anand,Averbakh,Fischer,Huebner, Ivanchuk,Kamsky,Karpov,Kasparov,Korchnoi, Kramnik,Larsen,Lautier,Lombardy,Reshevsky,Seiraw-
an, Short,Smyslov,Spassky,Speelman,Tal,Van Wely,and Yusupov and virtually all the other top U.S. men and women players, many of whom have been the winners of my brilliancy prize. I especially treasure the opportunity I had to meet the late GM Lothar Schmid, Arbiter of the 1972 Fischer-Spassky Match and the owner of the world's greatest chess book collection ( although I never got to accept his invitation to see the collection at his home in Bamberg, Germany ) ; the late Edward Lasker whose book Chess Secrets I Learned From the Masters he autographed for me at the Marshall about a year before his death ( a treasured part of my chess book and memorabilia collection ) ; and Susan,Sophia, and Judith Polgar as well as their parents. As a result of my access to the top of the chess world, included in my collection of chess books are many autographed by some of the all time great players. I greatly admire the great past GMs such as Lasker, Capablanca, Alekhine, Tarrasch, Schlechter, Nimzowitsch, etc. as well as many of the GMs who followed, particularly those who were or are both outstanding,creative chessplayers as well as highly learned men and women.[ I regret that I never had the opportunity to meet the late Mikhail Botvinnik, David Bronstein ,Yefim Geller, Svetozar Gligoric Paul Keres, Andor Lilienthal, Miguel Najdorf, Tigran Petrosian, ( or the still living legends such as Mark Taimanov and Alexander Beliavsky ) certainly all on my list of great chess artists, or Leko, Shirov, Topalov, and the new, younger geniuses except Magnus Carlsen and Hikaru Nakamura whom I first met at a young age, knowing his father Sunil Weeramantry for many years. Unfortunately, because I no longer serve in any official position related to chess and also because to some extent the chess center of the U.S. has moved from New York to Saint Louis benefitting from Rex Sinquefield's outstanding generosity and support, frequent future opportunities for my meeting more of the world's elite players seems less likely. I particularly admire strong women players, all three Polgars whom I know to some extent ( and I still see Susan from time to time at her Foundation events in NY ), GM Irina Krush whom I see frequently at the Marshall , as well as others such as GMs Alexandra Kosteniuk, Zhu Chen, and Pia Cramling all of whom I've met previously in NY.**

** My interest is in both chess history and players as well as playing and understanding the game itself and supporting it to the extent I can. In all ways I am a chess fan and supporter of chess and am a member of the Marshall Chess Club in NY as well as the Chess Club of Fairfield County CT closer to my home. However, I live 50 miles from NY City so getting to the Marshall is infrequent, but I was able to speak for example at the Fischer symposium on March 6 and 7, 2009, recounting my contacts with Bobby in 1957 and 1965; also I have been sponsoring the Bobby Fischer Memorial Blitz Tournament at the Marshall since 2010 around Bobby's March 9th birthday and plan to continue. Bobby and I were both born in 1943, I a couple months earlier on January 15th. At the Chess Club of Fairfield County CT in 2013, 2014, and 2015, I was the financial sponsor of the Connecticut Dreadnoughts team in the U.S. Chess League.**

**I enjoy this site, but too frequently it can be overloaded with invective,inane comments,and disputes over trivia, which in my opinion reflects a disrespect for our royal game, rather than a love of it, and the non chess discussions belong elsewhere. Since I continue to study, play, and financially support chess ( even though constrained from playing regularly in rated tournaments ) I am a regular, almost daily, visitor to the site because of the predominance of thoughtful and interesting posts and the high quality chess content provided by chessgames.com., and I do comment occasionally.**

Paul M. Albert, Jr. (Revised November 7, 2015)

Chessgames.com Full Member

   paulalbert has kibitzed 1024 times to chessgames   [more...]
   May-23-17 B Savchenko vs A Kostin, 2007 (replies)
 
paulalbert: Easy, but perhaps a little less intuitive and more subtle than the usual Tuesday. As with some others, my intuitive reaction had me looking initially at the right idea but the wrong initial move until I saw that Qg6 made it all work.
 
   May-18-17 Vasily Smyslov (replies)
 
paulalbert: I listen to Russian Operas from time to time on YouTube, but have no great knowledge. From what opera is the aria that Smyslov is singing. Boris Godunov perhaps?
 
   May-14-17 Fischerandom Chess (replies)
 
paulalbert: I was not aware of the recording of Bobby explaining Fischer Random chess above. It is certainly a simple, articulate explanation. As he says, learning the rules is easy. Actually I have never played Fischer Random. After 65 years, I am still trying to play the conventional set ...
 
   Apr-06-17 Arthur Bisguier (replies)
 
paulalbert: A great loss to the chess world! Arthur was for many years the judge for the Brilliancy Prizes I gave for the men's and women's U.S. Chess Championship, a job he took very seriously, requiring some significant analysis time in the pre computer era. May he rest in peace.
 
   Apr-03-17 US Championship (2017) (replies)
 
paulalbert: At the Marshall Chess Club a few months before he won his first World Championship match, Magnus told me that he regarded the #1 rating as a much better and more objective measure of who the best chess player in the world was. I told him I agreed, but in terms of both prestige ...
 
   Feb-20-17 Jose Raul Capablanca (replies)
 
paulalbert: I am not sure Capablanca deserves quite this much negative opinion. He certainly did not have a monomaniacal devotion to chess like Alekhine; he certainly had other interests ( and not just women ). Considering Capa relied primarily on his natural chess ability to find solutions ...
 
   Feb-11-17 Tradewise Gibraltar (2017) (replies)
 
paulalbert: From what I have read there does not seem to be any evidence that there was any human intervention in the computer pairing algorithms to make sure Hou Yifan played mostly women in an open tournament. The advantage of having computer pairing systems is that eliminates any human ...
 
   Jan-23-17 K Pan vs I Mjatezs, 2016 (replies)
 
paulalbert: Went for the Q sac in a microsecond; did not even look at the other possibilities. I lost in a simul to GM Walter Browne with a similar motif of the pin by the white squared bishop which I had forgotten about, but on the a2-g8 diagonal. The B was sitting on a2 behind the a3 pawn ...
 
   Jan-21-17 Jeremy Lim (replies)
 
paulalbert: Agree 100% on Walter Browne's calculating speed. When I took private lessons with him and we went over one of my games, he delved into 20 ply variations after a few moves , starting with moves I had not even considered, and way beyond my ability to calculate. There is no ...
 
   Dec-27-16 G Andruet vs Van der Wiel, 1985 (replies)
 
paulalbert: I looked at this very early this morning and could not find an easy solution. No wonder because position had white B on c4 so e2 square was protected. Glad I did not spend too much time banging my head against the wall since we had to take our son to the airport for a 6:30 AM ...
 
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