BOTW: 2017.04.08

The final two rounds of the US Championship, Wesley So's latest brilliancy, and a newly-available interview with Bobby Fischer are this week's Best of the Web.

US Championships
March 29 - April 10, 2017

Two 12-player round robins to determine the national champion and women's champion of the United States. 

The last round is Sunday April 9, but it looks like playoffs will be necessary, and they'll be April 10.

Games start at 2:00 pm EST.

With two rounds to go, Wesley So and Varuzhan Akobian are tied for the lead with 6/9.

The top three drew all their games between each other. The difference is that both Nakamura and Caruana have lost to lower-rated players: Naka lost to Onischuk and Caruana has lost to both Akobian and Zherebukh. These losses have cost Nakamura and Caruana nearly 30 FIDE rating points combined.

Women's Championship

In the women's Championship, Sabina Foisor and 2016 defending Champion Nazi Paikidze are tied with 6/9. Top seed Anna Zatonskih and seven-time Champion Irina Krush 1/2 a point back and meet each other in the final round. 


Live Games with Commentary (by GMs Yasser Seirawan, Maurice Ashley, and IM Jennifer Shahade) 


Fischer on Dick Cavett

There is a newly-posted interview of Bobby Fischer on the Dick Cavett show. 

The 21 minute 1972 interview took place during negotiations before the Spassky match was settled on Iceland. Other guests include consumer-rights advocate Ralph Nader, and comedienne Sandy Duncan. 

The video is "watermarked", but is certainly worth watching. Fischer is in a good mood, and even brought his own favourite chess set -- a 1950 Dubrovnik reproduction -- and gives a quick lesson in how the pieces move and bangs out the final position in the last game of their Candidates Final match to show why Petrosian resigned. Bangs is right: Fischer moves the pieces like lawn darts.

1971 Fischer interview before the Petrosian match
This one-on-one interview with Dick Cavett is better known, with excerpts appearing in Liz Garbus's documentary "Bobby Fischer Against The World".

Two Memorable Games from US Championship History

Round 9 of the 2017 US Chess Championship was one of the most remakable in US Championship history.

Nakamura (2793) lost as White to Onischuk (2667), and Caruana (2817) somehow managed to lose to Akobian (2645) despite being up two safe connected passed pawns. But what will probably be longest remembered is Wesley So's wonderful win with Black over current World Junior Champion, and #4 seed in the event, Jeffrey Xiong. His attack, capped by a Queen sac to ensure a pawn promotion is wonderful in its own right, but it has extra appeal since its start is reminicent of Fischer's great win over Byrne in 1963. 

Both games can be replayed with notes below. It's Black to play in the diagram. 

Wesley So interviewed after his brilliancy win over Jeffrey Xiong in round 9


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