Tuesday, January 31, 2017

(1340) 3rd STRAIGHT PNCC TITLE FOR CYRIL; Tata Steel Masters Update Rd. 10- (TBN-Jan. 30, 2017)

                    Baby Edna Mission, 2nd from left, Palau’s newest Woman National Master (WNM) treated defending champ Cyril Tomas Montel, Jr., right, Roberto Hernandez, left, and Manuel ‘Jun’ Mahor, Jr. to a 2-flavor pizza during the last day of 2016-2017 Palau National Chess Championship. Allan Alcid is 2nd, Paquito Suringa, Jr. is 3rd, I am 4th and 5 players with 3.5 points each are tied at 5th-9th spots—Mahor, Rustum Cabuso, Jeff Balbalosa, Gonzalo Escapatoria, Jr. and Tito Cabunagan, whose teammate at 2017 Oceania Zonal Angie Parrado-Sisior,  took the cellar with 2.5 points—the same points she’s got in OZCC.
                                           (Photo by Roberto Hernandez)

         3rd STRAIGHT P.N.C.C. TITLE 
                         FOR CYRIL; 
      Tata Steel Masters Update (Rd. 10)

LIKE in the 2014 Palau National Chess Championship, top seed Cyril Tomas Montel, Jr. clinched the title in the final round with a victory over me for a string of 3 consecutive PNCC titles after winning again this time vs. Manuel ‘Jun’ Mahor in the final round of 2016-2017 PNCC at Bethlehem Park on Jan. 22, 2017. A loss or a draw by Cyril is all that 2nd place finisher Allan Alcid is hoping for to finish this event on a high note but when it’s not meant to be, it will not be. His lone defeat from Jun is haunting him as he had a winning position when he blundered away his rook. Had he defeated Jun, he would have been the champion when I had beaten Cyril in Dec. 04, 2016 for his 1st loss.

                With the win, Cyril qualifies to the 2018 World Chess Olympiad in Batumi, Georgia with the top 4 finishers in the 2017 PNCC joining him. For Allan to qualify in that Olympiad, he must participate in that event and hope to finish in the top 4. If Cyril would also be the champ of 2017 PNCC, the 2nd-5th place finishers will compose the Palau Team to Georgia.

                After Mahor conceded the final game vs. Cyril, new Woman National Master Baby Edna Mission treated me, Cyril and Jun to a 2-flavor pizza at Rock Island CafĂ©. Some chess issues were informally shared by each other. I shared to them that the last time I teach Angel Magno, it is 30 minutes guitar lessons and 30 minutes chess lesson. In that half hour of chess lesson, she learned 2 chess opening – Sicilian Defense (Najdorf Variation) and Sicilian Defense (Dragon Variation). And that in just 30 minutes, she learned 2 openings while Paquito ‘Pax’ Suringa, Jr., who finished 3rd in the just concluded event, is already 10 years playing chess and he don’t know even a single chess opening.

                Cyril cited his game vs. Pax in Nov. 13, 2016 as good example of how bad is Pax in the opening that he doesn’t know how to regain the gambit pawn in their Queen Gambit Accepted game. I mentioned to them that when me and Pax are practicing blitz chess, I always told him that this is the by the book sequence of the Sicilian Defense—1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 and after this, the usual and almost automatic is 5. Nc3. But he always plays 5. Bd3 and shows how illiterate he is about openings.

                In Jan. 22, 2017 chat with CM Joselito Marcos, he shared to me that Wesley So (FIDE Rating of 2816.6) setup his new amazing record of 50 classical games without losses (+20=30) since July 16, 2016. He is playing in the Tata Steel Masters and after 7 rounds, World Champion Magnus Carlsen and Anish Giri, 4/7, drew their game after 123 moves; So and Pavel Eljanov also drew with So now with 5 points in 7 games and keeps his half point lead over the other 2 with Wei Yi now joint 2nd as he beat Loek Van Wely. Levon Aronian, 3.5/7, lost to Sergey Karjakin, 4/7, the challenger to Carlsen last year in New York. Adhiban, 3.5, was lucky to win a losing game to Poland’s Radoslaw Wojtaszek. 

                Round 9 results—So-Aronian first to finish with draw; Carlsen bounced back winning an equal rook + 3 pawns vs. Van Wely; Eljanov and Wei Yi tried hard but just drew with Dmitry Andreikin and Adhiban respectively. Standings: So-6/9, Carlsen, Eljanov and Wei Yi-5.5; Adhiban, Karjakin and Aronian-5; Pentala Harikrishna and Giri-4.5; Wojtaszek and Andreikin-4; Richard Rapport and Ian Nepomniachtchi-3.5 & Van Wely-1.5

                “Let us wait and see. So is up against Nepo in the last round but he plays Black. You may recall So beat the same opponent with Black in Baku! Wesley cannot afford to lose any game. He plays Wei Yi with white in the penultimate round 12.”

                Thursday, Jan. 26, 2017 – “Stop press! Wesley So defeated Wojtaszek just now. Aronian beat Rapport in first game to end in round 10. The other 10 players are still locked in their games, all with approximately even game as at this time. Wesley now registers a personal best rating of 2820.1! If he could beat Andreikin with Black tomorrow and at least draw with Wei Yi, he is a shoo-in for the title. Of course I am expecting he gets at least a draw from Nepo in the last round.”

                “Carlsen, with Black, was unable to beat Harikrishna, game ended in draw in 37 moves. Both Carlsen and Aronian are tied at 6/10, one point behind Wesley. Whoever wins between Eljanov and Wei Yi, will be sole 2nd just half point behind Wesley. If the game ends in draw, the 2 will tie Carlsen and Aronian in 2nd-5th place.”

                “In the final position of So-Wojtaszek game, Black will lose his bishop in exchange for the queening b-pawn, following Nb3-c5. Black to move but cannot save the game. A very good game, there a lot of fireworks-tactical exchanges-and the smoke of the battle was cleared, material was even but White’s b-passer is a winner! Wesley was able to convert a slightly better game into a win. Very impressive! An interesting development is going in the last 3 rounds of Tata Steel Masters. Eljanov and Wei Yi drew their game while Karjakin defeated Andreikin and all 3 joined Carlsen and Aronian in a 5-way tie in 2nd place with 6 points out of 10, one point behind solo leader Wesley So, who has now 53 unbeaten streak vs. elite opposition.”

                “Wesley in effect has another rest day as he drew his rd. 10 game vs. Andreikin in less than 30 minutes! He will play White vs. Wei Yi, who won over Karjakin in rd. 11 to come within half point of So’s lead. All games were drawn in Rd. 11, with Adhiban (Black) held Carlsen to a draw.

                Solution to last week’s puzzle No. 14 by CM Joselito Marcos: 1. Qg8 f5 2. Qg7 f4 3. Qg6 f3 4. Gxf3 Kh3 5. Qg1 Kh4 6. Qg4# (Published in Weekender, Philippines Dec. 31, 2006)

                This week’s puzzle No. 15: White to move and mates in 7 (Solution next issue)

Sources: Chess Mate by Roberto Hernandez
               Tia Belau Newspaper
               Pages 9 & 11
               Volume 26
               Issue 8
               January 30, 2017

               Chess and Music (Perfect Combination)
               The Beginning of Chess in Palau
               By Roberto Hernandez
               Soon to be published as a book

               Memoirs of a Chess Amateur
               My Memorable Games and Compositions
               By CM Joselito Marcos
               Page 429

               Music and Me by Roberto Hernandez
               Tia Belau Newspaper
               March 15, 2012 -- April 18, 2013
               April 25, 2013 -- January 30, 2017  


(1339) MUSIC AND ME (Dec. 15, 2016) BONDING TIME for Exec. HR and Sales & Marketing of PRR

 Left to right, Roberto Hernandez, Ella Asuncion, Kenny Uludui, Wilfred, Bob Hsiao and Rodney Yakuchil during the bonding party of Executive Department, HR Department and Sales and Marketing Department of Palau Royal Resort on Dec. 03, 2016 at Airai View Hotel's Water Paradise.

2 days prior to Christmas, the Executive, HR, and Sales and Marketing Department of Palau Royal Resort held its bonding party at Airai View Hotel Water Paradise. Those who attended are GM Masayuki Kawaguchi, his secretary Ella Asuncion, Ivana Bautista, Chief of Security Kenny Uludui, Wilfred, Rod Yakuchil, HR Manager Bob Hsiao, Ramil (cook at Cafeteria, Vina F Liwanag, Ley Balba.
I met there an Israeli family -- Liat, Amir and their son Liam, which is the combination of the first 2 letters of their names. Liat is interested to have me teach Liam drums lessons at Pentecostal Missionary Church of Christ (4th Watch) Palau
Locale one of these days. It happened in Dec. 5, Monday and it was a rock! Liam enjoyed every minute of it. The last part of that afternoon lesson is Liat at the drums, Liam holding a guitar like a Hawaiian guitar style, and me playing the guitar and singing Hotel California while Amir is taking a video of us. Liat knows the lyrics of the song. It was a fantastic experience with the Israeli family. They go to Yap for a week and back again to Palau before Christmas. They said goodbye to me on the afternoon of Christmas day and we have some good conversation and photo session at the lobby of PRR.

Sources: Chess Mate by Roberto Hernandez
               Tia Belau Newspaper
               December 29, 2002 -- January 29, 2017

              Chess and Music (Perfect Combination)
              The Beginning of Chess in Palau
              By Roberto Hernandez
              Soon to be published as a book

              Music and Me by Roberto Hernandez
              Tia Belau Newspaper
              March 15, 2012 -- April 18, 2013
              April 25, 2013 -- January 29, 2017

             The History of Chess in Palau
             By Roberto Hernandez
             June 09, 2002 -- January 29, 2017 

Sunday, January 29, 2017


                      Baby Edna Mission, left, and 2014 Norway World Chess Olympiad teammate Joy Flores Whipps, finally played their thrice-postponed match at Joy’s office in Jan. 17 at 12:15pm. The win by Mission confirmed her being the 2nd Women National Master of Palau, with its first WNM Angie Parrado currently participating in the 2017 Oceania Zonal Chess Championship in Auckland, New Zealand together with Palau No. 3 Tito Cabunagan.                    (Photo by Roberto Hernandez)

                  MISSION IS THE 2nd 
    Palau Woman National Master (WNM)
THERE was a heavy traffic in downtown Koror from 7:30 am on Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017 when I am going back to Palau Royal Resort for breakfast. A few hours later, Palau’s No. 2 woman chess player Baby Edna Mission a.k.a. Bheng Mendoza Codinera, called me that I should be there at 11:30am during their last round match with Joy Flores Whipps and to bring chess materials for the game. It will be held at the 4th floor of Surangel’s building at Joy’s office.

                A day earlier, I text Gonzalo ‘Jojo’ Escapatoria, Jr. for his possible match with Paquito ‘Pax’ Suringa, Jr. at the Dormitory 1 of PRR on Monday or Tuesday evening. Jojo chose Tuesday (Pax day off) at 5pm. I didn’t confirm to him because I’m doing it again! They are the ones who will be playing and they should be the ones communicating with each other. I asked Pax to text Jojo about his available date and time. He’s stingy to spent $0.06 per text and he doesn’t bring with him his cell phone all the time.
                As I was about to go to downtown after early lunch, Bheng called again. Because of heavy traffic,
Joy will be late for half an hour. I calculate the trip to be 20 minutes even with traffic but still I am late by 10 minutes. We set the chessboard at Joy’s office table and they began their thrice-postponed match.
                While they are playing, I updated the game chart of the 2016-2017 Palau National Chess Championship’s Top 10 Division (in smaller paper inside my belt bag). They are moving fast with Joy saying, “This is got to be a quick game.” Still, I was able to finish one game vs. Magnus Carlsen (age 9) in my mobile phone’s chess game app before they finish their game in which Bheng won convincingly. Joy has not been playing serious chess since 2014 World Chess Olympiad in Tromso, Norway where she is the Board 5/Reserve player of Palau in the women’s division.
                Ultimately, Bheng achieved a WNM title with the win. Joan Gemota was the only player that can catch her but when she defeated Joan in the earlier round, it’s a smooth ride to the championship and she’s the only player that ‘chases’ her opponent for their matches. The others may be feeling unprepared and not showing up during Sunday’s matches.
                I took a 2-hour nap and wake up at 5pm, the time that Jojo said he will come. At 6:03pm, I text him with “Are you on the way? Pax is waiting for you.” He replied with, “I replied yesterday and I said 5pm but no confirmation. A while later, I text Pax if our game is on and no reply also. So I commit to do a part-time job right now.”
                I go to Pax room and told him about Jojo’s reply. That’s the only time that he check his cell phone and there’s the reply of Jojo again that his part-time job was postpone and he’s coming for their game. In the future tournaments, I will not arrange any match for players. They have their own phones to do it themselves. Many of them are spoiled by my generosity and concerns that it is now being abused. Pax won in 44 moves of Vienna Game.
                 There is only one new player, Johnny Carandang, that gave me a phone load worth $1.00 for spending $0.12 when I text him twice that his clock is running and he needs to come for his match in the January, 2015 Palau Blitz Chess Championship.
                There were no games played on Jan. 25 penultimate round but I still brought the chess materials. When I see no players around, I go to the Palau National Gymnasium to watch basketball game. When I saw Jojo standing near the entrance, I talk to him and gave him the chess materials and I proceed to Malakal fisheries to evangelize the 23 Filipino fishermen caught fishing illegally in Palau waters. All of them were baptized with 11 of them on Christmas day. I said to those who were baptized on Christmas day that I was baptized also on Christmas day in 2005 and since then, I never missed the covenant of communion even when I go to Russia, Turkey, Norway and Azerbaijan World Chess Olympiads in 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2016 respectively.
                At 4:30pm, I’m back at Bethlehem Park and saw Jojo watching basketball game. He said his opponent for that day, Rustum Cabuso, has a game of basketball to play so they were not able to play their game. Jojo said he is claiming the win by default because Rustum didn’t play with him and his last round game is on Sun. against Pax. He said he has a commitment on Sun. Jan. 22 and he asked for Pax number to ask him what day he will be available esp. in the evening.
                In his social media chat, Rustum said it is unfair for him to lose that game. I replied that if he can explain his views/comments, he can convince Jojo to play their game on Jan. 22.
                I can’t access to the 2017 Oceania Zonal Chess Championship links as of press time, in Auckland, New Zealand to check the last 3 rounds (7-9 rds.) and see how Tito Cabunagan and Angie Parrado-Sisior finished the 9-round biannual event. Tito has 2 points and Angie, 2.5 going into the last 3 rounds.

                Solution to last week’s puzzle No. 13 by CM Joselito Marcos: 1. Rb1 h4 2. Bh1 h3 3. Rb7 h2 4. Kf5 g6+ 5. Ke4 Kc6 6. Kd4# (Published in Today, Philippines 11/08/1996.

                This week’s puzzle No. 14: White to move and mates in 6 moves (Solution next issue)

Sources: Chess Mate by Roberto Hernandez
              Tia Belau Newspaper
              Pages 9-10
              Volume 26
              Issue 7
           January 23, 2017

           Chess and Music (Perfect Combination)
           The Beginning of Chess in Palau
           By Roberto Hernandez
           Soon to be published as a book

           Memoirs of a Chess Amateur
           My Memorable Games and Composition
           By CM Joselito Marcos
           Page 249

          Music and Me by Roberto Hernandez
          Tia Belau Newspaper
          March 15, 2012 -- April 18, 2013
          April 25, 2013 -- January 23, 2017

          The History of Chess in Palau
          By Roberto Hernandez
          June 09, 2002 -- January 23, 2017     

(1337) MUSIC AND ME (Dec. 08, 2016) TUNING 3 PIANOS ON Aug. 08, Dec. 14, 20, 2016 in Palau

     On Aug. 08, 2016, my piano student Lanie Kinsiano asked my to tune the Yamaha piano at Seventh Day Adventist church. Two keys were defective and I was able to fix it and tuned it as well. 4 months and 6 days later, I tuned a Samick piano of Mr. Ha before teaching his grandson piano on Dec. 14, 2016. Six days later, I tuned another Yamaha piano at Palau Mission Academy.
                    (Selfie photo by Roberto Hernandez -- Dec. 14, 2016)

                 TUNING 3 PIANOS ON 
            Aug. 08, Dec. 14 and 20, 2016
                              in Palau

Lanie Kinsiano is my piano student every Sunday afternoon. She can play piano already reading music notes especially Christian songs. She and her husband jog regularly at the Palau Track and Field Oval. Every Wednesday and Friday in early morning hours, I usually saw them walking/jogging there.

Lanie works at the office of Seventh Day Adventist church near their house. Prior to Aug. 08, 2016, she asked me to tune the Yamaha piano at the church. She said she will pay me through petty cash and I have to bring receipt.

That morning, me, my wife Flor and her co-employee Cecile went to get free eye glass near the oval from Japanese volunteer on medical mission in Palau for a week. We fall in line at 7am and get our reading glass after more than 2 hours. 

I dropped them at a store before I proceed to the Social Security Administration office to ask why my $50.00 additional benefit from Palau government was stopped.

I was informed that I have to report to SSA office every 6 months to informed them that I am still in Palau so that they will continue to sent through bank my SS pension. Because I didn't report in June, they stopped my pension for the month of July, which I am suppose to receive in August. They will resume sending it but without the $50.00 from government because it is not from them. And that I have to report again in February 2017.

I explained to them that I thought reporting to them applies only to those eligible to receive pensions but staying in Philippines, who has to report to them every 6 months so that their SS pension will not be stopped.

I proceed to Lanie and said to her that I will tune the piano after lunch because I run out of time because of long line in getting free eyeglass. In going back to Palau Royal Resort, I saw Flor and Cecile walking. They will go first to the other department stores before getting a taxi to get them back at Dragon Tei. 

Have lunch at PRR before tuning the piano at SDA. There are 2 defective keys that are not getting back to its original position after hitting it. It's been the problem of a very old piano that I tuned at I Love Music school a few years ago. I know what to do with it.

While tuning it, a pastor from Palau Missionary Academy in Airai, Pastor Sanchez, asked me to tune also their piano there. I gave him my card for reference in the future.

After 2 hours, the piano is tuned and fix. Lanie and her husband were impressed that the keys are now working properly after I hit it repeatedly for at least 400 times.

In early December of 2016, I've got a phone call from Mrs. Ha, the wife of the prominent Korean businessman, Mr. Ha, asking me to call her daughter-in-law for a possible piano teaching of her grandson at their house in the 4th floor of Paradise Hotel.

I talked to So Hee Ha, her daughter-in-law, and we set a date for the boy's first piano lesson on Sat. December 10 at 2 pm. 

After teaching Shane Abellera guitar on that Sat. morning from 8:00-10:00, I went back to PRR for lunch and go to Paradise Hotel at 2pm for the first piano lesson of Edward Ha.

I noticed many out of tuned keys of the piano and suggested to them that I will come 2 hours earlier (2pm) on Wed., Dec. 14 to tune the piano before Edward comes back from school at 4pm. 
So Hee Ha asked me how much I charge for tuning the piano. I said if it's not tuned for a long time, $75.00 and if it's tuned for just a year and earlier, only $50.00. She said it's not been tuned for more than 10 years.

Mrs. Ha is also there and asked me also to tune the piano at the Korean church in Airai if I have free time.

So Hee Ha paid me $87.00 for tuning and Edward's first one hour lesson in Dec. 10. She said she will pay me every Saturday. I charged her $12.00/hour for twice a week lesson. If once a week, $15.00/hour. 

A few days later, Pastor Sanchez asked me also to tune their Yamaha piano at Palau Missionary Academy in Airai. We set the date of tuning on Monday, December 19 at 9am.

During Palau Royal Resort's Christmas party in Dec. 17, I won in the parlor game a gift certificate of free swimming and free use of beach facilities for a day at PRR. There is also a $5.00 cash because we are co-winners. I gave the cash to Sharon Joy Malubay, the cashier, and she willingly chose it adding that me and my wife should use it.


My wife wants to use it on Monday, Dec. 19, with her co-employees Maritess and Ging-Ging for them to swin and she will just enjoy the view and will take many photos.

The date and time, is the same as my tuning of the piano at PMA, so I called Pastor Sanchez to postpone it for Tuesday, the same time. I also add that I charge extra $5.00 for gas whenever I teach or tune piano in Airai.

Before coming to PRR, they bought snacks and drinks that they will consume for a day.

I gave the brochure to Marcia Florentino, who's been working at PRR for 10 years and received a 1 night stay at PRR, some souvenir logo items  and $100.00. 

I will get mine this year.

We have some photos before I go back to PRR Dormitory to watch NFL game...

I sleep with Flor that Monday night. I have breakfast of fruits before proceeding to PMA for piano tuning. Mr. Sanchez is still in the classroom. I waited for him for about 15 minutes.
He brought me to the big room where the piano is. Two of the keys have only one string left. Some others have 1 snapped strings for a total of 13 strings. 

I told Pastor Sanchez that I replaced a B string of the piano that I'm using now at PRR that I got from the old piano of Yuriko Irikedamoto of Dragon Tei. I will try if I can get those snapped strings from her and if not, they have to buy those from Philippines and I will replace those.

After tuning it for 2 hours, I waited again for Mr. Sanchez. He asked me to bring an invoice to the main office in Koror so that they will issue me a check for $80.00.

I'm in a hurry to come back so that I can deposit $50.00 for some help in Philippines. Flor's got a lot of texts and phone call while I'm driving fast. I answered her when I am in line at the bank. The line is long and I will not make it to the lunch time at PRR so I leave the line and rush to PRR for lunch.

Back again to the bank and gave the invoice at the office of 
SDA, who asked me to come back on Fri. to get my check.

Sources: Chess Mate by Roberto Hernandez
                 Tia Belau Newspaper
                 December 29, 2002 -- January 17, 2017

                 Music and Me by Roberto Hernandez
                 Tia Belau Newspaper
                 March 15, 2012 -- April 18, 2013
                 April 25, 2013 -- January 17, 2017