Justus training hard!

Justus Williams

Justus Williams is one of the brightest stars in scholastic chess. As his rating continues to climb, he is making strides to take his game to a higher level. Now at I.S. 318, his coach Elizabeth Vicary has arranged a match with FM Andrei Zaremba, a former scholastic standout.

The four-game match will be played on two consecutive weekends and will be Game/90. The first two games showed that Justus has the skill to play enterprising chess. Vicary posted on her blog,

In the first game, Justus was up a piece for a pawn, but Andrei got some counterplay, went into a queen ending and held. In game 2, Justus was positionally much worse, then lost a pawn, but got lots of activity in a rook and same colored bishop ending and drew.

The 11-year old All-American will lead his team this year with hopes of a successful season. Very unassuming and humble, Justus is approaching a 2200 rating and hopes to become a Grandmaster one day. The match with Zaremba is tied with two draws. The last two games will be played on Sunday.

See story here!

Daaim Shabazz

Daaim Shabazz is the founder of The Chess Drum, while serving as a tenured faculty member of Global Business & Marketing at Florida A&M University in Tallahassee, Florida, USA. He holds a B.S. Computer Science from Chicago State University, an MBA in Marketing and a Ph.D. in International Affairs & Development, both from Clark Atlanta University. He has served the journalist community for more than 30 years and still competes in tournaments occasionally.


  1. I have a good feeling about Justus. He has his head in the right place. Game/90 is a good format. I would be interested in see the game with Zaremba with Rg6! I’m wondering how black got counterplay.

  2. “JWill” got this key position against Zaremba. He played 25.Rg6! There was a question asked about 25.Nxd5 on Vicary’s blog. I saw it almost immediately. Why do you think white didn’t play this move??

    The young phenom played 1.Rg6! getting an advantage. Why not 25.Nxd5?

    After 25. Rg6! (exploiting black’s overloaded queen and e6-bishop) the game continued 25…Rb6? (other moves lose too) 26. Bxb6 axb6 27. Rxe6 Qxe6 28. Qxh4 and white is winning. However, doesn’t 25.Nxd5 just win material?

  3. Juniors in the U.S. are usually tactically alert. Actually it is one of the criticisms of U.S. players… very tactical, but lack positional understanding. I believe Justus has a balanced style.

    Here is the game (40.Rc2 must be an entry error):

  4. Justus… may you continue to gain insight as your understanding improves as you continue to” enjoy the journey” God bless you in all of your endeavours!

  5. Haven’t heard from Justus’ grandmother in a while. How does she think “the champ” will do at Spring nationals? She should be ashamed of herself for picking on the Colas family and creating a sorry controversy that has now affected “the champ” and Josh’s relationship. There is no nicer family (or more unassuming family) than the Colas’s. Nana, please give some thought to your comments before you post them in the future.


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