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A Tribute to Al Sandrin

Albert Sandrin was born in 1923 and died in 2004. In 1952 he enrolled in the Marshall School for the Blind. In 1968 he was totally blind and was the #1 player on the U.S. Braille Chess team. He won the U.S. Braille Association Chess Championship in 1974, 1982, and 1984. He worked as a piano tuner.

Some of Al Sandrin's Memorable Games

Here is the game which won the brilliancy prize at the 1968 International Bbraille Chess Association Olympiad in England

White: Al Sandrin (United States(
Black: Loftus (Ireland)
3rd Olympiad 1968, round 2

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 d5 4. Bg5 Nbd7 5. cxd5 exd5 6. e3 c6 7. Bd3 Be7 8. Qc2 0-0 9. Nf3 h6 10. h4 Re8 11. 0-0-0 hxg5 12. hxg5 Ne4 13. Nxe4 dxe4 14. g6 Nf6 15. gxf7+ Kxf7 16. Ne5+ Kg8 17. Bxe4 Nxe4 18. Qxe4 Bf6 19. Qh7+ Kf8 20. Qg6 Be6 21. e4 Qc7 22. Rh5 Bxe5 23. dxe5 Rad8 24. rxd8+ Qxd8 25. Rh8+ Bg8 26. Qh7 Qg5+ 27. Kb1 Kf7 28.. e6+ Kxe6 29. Rxg8 Kf7 30. Rxe8 Kxe8 31. Qh3 Qd8 32. Qh8+ Kd7 33. Qxg7+ Kc8 34. Qg4+ Kc7 35. Qf4+ Kc8 36. Qg4+ Kc7 37. Qe2 Qh4 38. a3 Qh1+ 39. Ka2 Qxg2 40. Qe3 Qg8+ 41. Qb3 Qg7 42. Qg3+ Qxg3 43. fxg3 Kd6 44. g4 Ke5 45. g5 c5 46. a4 b6 47. Kb3 a6 48. Kc4 Ke6 49. a5 1-0

Here is the game that decided the 1982 U.S. Braille Chess Association tournament

USBCA Tournament February 20-21, 1982
Norbeck Maryland
White: Al Sandrin
Black: Dr. James Slagle
King's Indian defense

1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 g6 3 Nc3 Bg7 4 e4 d6 5 Nf3 0-0 6 Be2 e5 7 d5 Ne8 8 b4 f5 9 Nd2 Nd7 10 Nb3 Ndf6 11 f3 kh8 12 Be3 nh5 13 Qd2 f4 14 Bf2 Bf6 15 c5 Bh4 16 Bd3 Qg5 17 Bxh4 Qxh4+ 18 Qf2 g5 19 Qxh4 gxh4 20 Rc1 a6 21 Kf2 h3 22 Rhg1 Rg8 23 Na5 b6 24 cxb5 cxb5 25 Nc6 a5 26 bxa5 bxa5 27 na4 Bd7 28 Nb6 Bxc6 29 Nxa8 Bxa8 30 Rc8 Nef6 31 Rgc1 Bxd5 32 exd5 hxg2 33 Rxg8+ Kxg8 34 Kxg2 Kf8 35 Be4 Ng7 36 Rc7 Nge8 37 Ra7 h6 38 Rxa5 Nc7 39 Ra7 Ncxd5 40 Bxd5 Nxd5 41 a4 Ne3+ 42 Kf2 d5 43 a5 d4 44 Ke2 Nd5 45 a6 Nb4 46 Ra8+ Ke7 47 a7 d3+ 48 Kd2 e4 49 fxe4 f3 50 Rg8 f2 51 a8-q f1-q 52 Qd8+ Ke6 53 Re8+ Kf7 54 Qe7+ Kg6 55 Rg8+ Kh5 56 Qe5+ Kh4 57 Qg3+ Kh5 58 Qg4 mate.

Here are two games Al Sandrin played against the great Bobby Fischer

[Event "North Central Open"]
[Site "-"]
[Date "1957.11.30"]
[EventDate "?"]
[Round "2"]
[Result "1-0"]
[White "Robert James Fischer"]
[Black "Albert Sandrin"]
[ECO "A05"]
[WhiteElo "?"]
[BlackElo "?"]
[PlyCount "85"]

1. Nf3 Nf6 2. g3 b6 3. Bg2 Bb7 4. O-O c5 5. d3 d5 6. Nbd2 Nc6 7. e4 e5 8. exd5 Nxd5 9. c4 Ndb4 10. Nxe5 Nxe5 11. Bxb7 Rb8 12. Bg2 Be7 13. Nf3 Nxf3+ 14. Qxf3 Qxd3 15. Qxd3 Nxd3 16. Rd1 Rd8 17. Bc6+ Kf8 18. Be4 Nxc1 19. Raxc1 Rd4 20. Rxd4 cxd4 21. c5 bxc5 22. b4 Ke8 23. bxc5 Kd7 24. Rc4 Kc7 25. c6 Rd8 26. Kf1 g6 27. Ke2 a5 28. Kd3 f5 29. Bg2 Bb4 30. Rxd4 Bc5 31. Rxd8 Kxd8 32. Ke2 Kc7 33. Bd5 h6 34. f4 g5 35. fxg5 hxg5 36. h4 gxh4 37. gxh4 Bd4 38. a4 Bf6 39. h5 Bg5 40. Kd3 Kb6 41. Kc4 Be3 42. Bf3 Kc7 43. Kd5 1-0

[Event "Chicago sim"]
[Site "Chicago sim"]
[Date "1964.??.??"]
[EventDate "?"]
[Round "?"]
[Result "1-0"]
[White "Robert James Fischer"]
[Black "Albert Sandrin"]
[ECO "C33"]
[WhiteElo "?"]
[BlackElo "?"]
[PlyCount "45"]

1. e4 e5 2. f4 exf4 3. Bc4 Nf6 4. Nc3 Bb4 5. Nf3 Qe7 6. Qe2 O-O 7. e5 Bxc3 8. dxc3 Nh5 9. O-O Re8 10. Qe4 c6 11. Qd4 b5 12. Bd3 g6 13. Bxf4 c5 14. Qe3 Nc6 15. Bxb5 Bb7 16. Rae1 d5 17. exd6 Qf6 18. Qxe8+ Rxe8 19. Rxe8+ Kg7 20. Bxc6 Nxf4 21. d7 Ne2+ 22. Rxe2 Bxc6 23. Ne5 1-0

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