Shulman, Friedel, Schmakel to Debut

Update (09/06): Sam Schmakel is unable to play this week for personal reasons, so Todd Freitag will play on Board 4 for the Blaze. Thanks for stepping up, Todd.

The lineups for Wednesday night’s USCL match between the Blaze and the Miami Sharks have been announced, and three new players will make their first appearance for the Blaze this week: GM Yury Shulman, GM Josh Friedel, and NM Sam Schmakel. The only Blaze veteran in the lineup is GM Dmitry Gurevich, who finds himself in the unusual position of playing Board 3. Dmitry held the redoutable GM Varuzhan Akobian to a draw with the Black pieces this past week enroute to the Blaze's big victory over the Seattle Sluggers. We'll bring you an analysis of that exciting game shortly.

Yury was the 2008 U.S. chess champion. Josh tied for 6th in the 2009 national championships, among many other chess achievements. Sam is a sophomore at Chicago's Whitney Young Magnet High School and led the school to the Illinois state championship his freshman year.  

 Here are the matchups: 

GM Yury Shulman (Blaze) vs. FM Joan Olivera

FM Eric Rodriguez vs. GM Josh Friedel (Blaze)

GM Dmitry Gurevich (Blaze) vs. NM Ernesto Alvarez

Alejandro Allen vs. NM Sam Schmakel (Blaze)

Veteran Blaze fans will recall that the Sharks were the team that eliminated us from the playoffs last year, so our guys will be looking to mete out some payback Wednesday night. Join us at 7:00 PM Chicago time on the Internet Chess Club, where you can follow the action live. And don't forget to follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Go Blaze!

photo: GM Yury Shulman

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