Saturday, June 28, 2008

June TNT Round 4

Vincent - Lauritson 1-0

A very nice attack starting with 19. Bxh6.
It appears that Black's problems started with 8...Bh4, which gave White several tempo for the attack. My engine indicates that 9...Re8 is preferable to 9...a6, but initially I couldn't see why. The point however is that the bishop is able to escape to e4 if White plays similar to the game with g4, d4, f4.

Babb - Kernetsky 0-1
White's attacking chances dissipate, while Black gets counterplay on the c file.

Nikouline - Bince 0-1
Nice game by Black - White's queenside weaknesses were too much.

Wiebe - Evans 1-0
Black had numerous chances but couldn't find the right moves.

Mundwiler - Greenberg 1-0
Black gets in a heap of trouble along the f-file- perhaps 10...f5 was necessary.

Aaron Green - Klokow DRAW
In an unbalanced position the players repeated the position.

Gibson - Letain DRAW
Black wins a second pawn, but for some reason does not play 16...Bf5 keeping it. He could have regained the two pawn advantage with 23...Qb6+ and 24..Bxa2. And again later with 26...Qxc3
Black's last chance for a clear win was 37...Kf4 instead of Ke4

Gibbons - Kuropatwa 0-1
White helps crack open the queenside

Monday, June 23, 2008

Team Active Tournament

Team Active Tournament

First round action

As Alex Nikouline has mentioned, the Active tournament was a great success with 9 teams comprised of 36 players. Hats off to the TD, Alex, for quick pairings and quick publishing of all results.

After two rounds it already appeared that the Dark Knights and the Juniors would be the class of the field with 6.5 each ahead of Team Rutter which had 4.5. The leaders drew in round 3, while My System swept BOGG to close to within .5 of the leaders.

In round 4, the Dark Knights beat My System 3-1, while the Juniors kept pace. But as Alex reported, in the final game of round 5 Francis Trueman played spoiler and denied the Juniors a share of first.
Congratulations to the Dark Knights.

My System vs. Juniors

Team Rutter vs. Team Lipic

Team Araullo vs. Team Einarsson

Snails vs. Dark Knights

Kaptsan vs. Vincent - Passing the torch

Even TD Alex couldn't avoid being paired against Trevor

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Cecil's Saturday Puzzle - June 21, 2008

Cecil's Saturday Puzzle - June 21, 2008 from the Winnipeg Free Press

White to move and mate in 3 (Bettmann)

I guess I would consider this quite elementary. White has one idea- mate on g8 or a8 and Black only has a few moves after any first move.

So we can dismiss 1. Ra3 as 1...g2xh1(Q) covers the a8 square.
1. Rg3 doesn't work after g1(Q), so
1. Rg1 changes the above scenarios as White's next move is 2.Rg3 and 3.Rg8# mate can't be avoided.

1997 Canadian Open video

Cecil Rosner writes:
I finally found some time to edit a little "mini-documentary" of the Canadian Open in Winnipeg 1997. It remains the biggest tournament Winnipeg has ever organized, with 11 grandmasters and nearly 200 players. It contains footage of the event and tournament hall, interviews with players/organizers, etc. Some clips from Yanofsky, Hodgson, Spraggett, Psakhis, Shabalov, Smirin, Murey, etc. Ole Hellsten, Albert Boxer and others make an appearance, as do Hugh Brodie, Phil Haley, etc.. Just some moments that might be of interest to those who played and others. There is lots more raw footage. Pass along the link to anyone you might think is interested....


Thursday, June 19, 2008

June TNT Round 3

Andras Adorjan, author of 'Black is OK' would have loved this round.

Kernetsky - Vincent 0-1
Doesn't Trevor know the Dutch is refuted ? A convincing win by our newest master

Greenberg - Lauritson 0-1
As Alex indicated the game score is incorrect. Lorne, please give Harley's opponents the carbon.

Wiebe - Babb 0-1
White did not find the lines that offered the toughest resistance in the early endgame.

Letain - Nikouline 0-1
I thought White had missed 13.Bxe6, but 13...Ne5 is a strong reply. White suffers from his weak pawns.

Mundwiler-Bince 0-1

White declined a potential Benko, but ended up facing an intiative without the pawn as compensation. White rejected 9. Nb3 obtaining the two bishops and a slightly better position. But he is fine until he pitches a pawn with 17. c6 ?

Aaron Green - Rutter 0-1
White solves Black's characteristic white square bishop problems. He goes fishing with 19. Qh5 and 21. f3, but misses that 21...Qxa2 wins a piece.

Evans - Gibson 1-0
Black falls behind in development and pays the price.

Klokow-Kuropatwa 1-0
Black gets in trouble in the opening.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

National Open - Las Vegas - June 8

Round 5 and I am Black against veteran New Hampshire master Hal Terrie.

He had a large space advantage, but I played "rope-a-dope" hoping he would over-extend.
The position got sharp, and I believe I may have captured with the wrong pawn at a critical point. In the lengthy post-mortem we took turns winning. But in the real game I lost.

In between rounds I headed over to the Rio to check out the World Series of Poker.
That is Chris Ferguson to the dealer's left.

Daniel Wiebe took a break from his Vegas vacation to play in the U2000 section.
Round 6
I had an advantage against Benjamin Coraretti through about thirty moves until my intiative evaporated and I was left with a worse endgame.

So I finished with 1.5. but managed to play 5 FIDE rated players (although given my result, my overall FIDE rating performance is lower than I wished).

I'll be back.

National Open - Las Vegas - June 7

Round 3
I played medical doctor Arthur Galstian from Indianapolis - I understood this was his first tournament in North America.
I won with the Black pieces and after the post mortem I had time
to jump on The Deuce and head to the Tropicana to see the scientific display Bodies.
Fascinating stuff; photography not allowed.

Round 4
With the Black pieces I faced a WIM from Mexico, Alejandra Guerrero Rodriguez.
I had a slight edge, but she had great counterplay and eventually we got into a dynamic position where one slight misstep by the aggressor could be fatal. So we drew.

During the rounds, there are free commentary/lectures in rooms adjacent to the playing hall.
IM John Donaldson is always worth catching regardless of the topic.

GM Larry Evans filled in for the ailing Arthur Bisguier in the "analyze your games" sessions.
Unfortunately, I was only able to catch Larry after his sessions.

So 1.5-2.5 after 4 rounds and 3 FIDE rated oppponents !

National Open - Las Vegas - June 6, 2008

Friday Noon - First round of the 3 day schedule
(Last year I played the 2 day schedule which was comprised of 3 G/60 games on Saturday morning followed by merging with the rest for the 4th round Saturday evening.)

My opponent - a reigning World Champion - under 12 Gold Medalist Daniel Naroditsky !
In the game, I thought he had missed something, but it was me missing that my knight no longer covers d4 when it is on e5. After defeating me, Daniel went on to draw with GM Erenburg in Round 2. Here is a short article about Daniel.

In Round 2, I faced well-known chess author Eric Schiller.
My anticipated counterplay did not materialize and I succumbed to an instructive attack. I chatted with Eric for a long time after the game. He is an interesting and personable guy with lots of interesting ideas.

So 0-2 after day 1 - but I played 2 FIDE rated players, one short of my goal.

I also met Ruth Haring, who some of you may remember as one of the strongest American women chess players of the 1970s. We were seated close by most rounds and I set her newly acquired clock for a couple of rounds (Boron - international clock setter). I asked her if she played Jeff Babb in the Canadian Open in Montreal 1974 - for some reason I vaguely remembered that. She confirmed that she had played Jeff. This was her first tournament in approximately 20 years !

Monday, June 16, 2008

National Open - Las Vegas - June 5

I travelled to Las Vegas the night of Thursday, June 5 to participate in the National Open.
I was originally registered in the U2000 section, but after looking at the pre-registrations in the Open section, I decided to play in that in order to get some more FIDE rateable games.
After I checked in at the site of the tournament, the Riviera,
I decided to head down to the playing halls to see if the blitz championship was still in progress.
I caught the last few minutes of the last round.
The crowd was watching Nakamura-Paragua with Akobian visible on the right in the picture.

Macauley Petersen of ICC / Chess.FM filming the action

Nakamura won the tournament.

Friday, June 13, 2008

June TNT Round 2

You can play through the June TNT games (with light annotations) here

Vincent - Mundwiler 1-0
Black misses that he can not take back on f5 until it is too late (there is Q check on h5 at the end)

Lauritson - Babb 1-0
Black ends up with too many weaknesses. 28...b5 drops a pawn, but it was getting difficult anyway.

Nikouline - Kernetsky 0-1
Who is attacking here ? White looks like he is building up a nasty attack, but is stopped in his tracks by 18...Bxa3 !

Bince - Wiebe 0-1
A nice idea was executed in this game. White has just moved 31. Kd2
Black to move and win

31...e1 (Q) + 32. Kxe1 Nxd5+ 33. Kd2 Re2+ 34. Kd3 Re3+

Klokow - Greenberg 0-1
The Sveshnikov e and f pawns got rolling and White could not find the answers.

Evans- Gibbons 1-0
Black invents the Gibbons variation of the Philidor Defence, and more or less equalizing until droping a knight. Instead 17...Nd7 and Black is surprisingly ok.

Gibson - Aaron Green 0-1
White gets in a bit of trouble after 15. Na4. but 16. b3 giving up the exchange is preferable to sacrificng the knight for a pawn.

Kuropatwa - Letain 0-1
A very unusual opening, White could have played 13. f4 to survive a bit longer, but he is very behind in development.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

June TNT Round 1

Rutter - Vincent 0-1
Black gets to play the best of the Dutch/Nimzo themes.

Babb-Klokow 1-0
John Klokow returns to tournament play, but faces a formidable opponent in Jeff Babb.
Apparently they followed (through some transpositions perhaps) Rubinstein-Duras, Spain 1912 until White varied with 17. Rac1. Black's mistake was the abandoning of his back rank, although he was facing the wrong side of a long grind.

Aaron Green - Nikouline 0-1
Although White's line against the Sveshnikov is unusual he maintains an equal position into the endgame. The draw is probably still obtainable with 49. Rxd6, but he chose a different way that lost at least 2 tempii and by then he is lost with best play by Black. However in the game, 57. c5 gives White another chance to draw.

Mundwiler - Evans 1-0
Tactics, Tactics (I'll have more about that in a future post) And positional play, 9...f6 is bad, and actually ends up giving Black one big tactical headache, although surprisingly it is survivable with 19...Nc6.

Letain - Lauritson 0-1
16. Bxg7 is a bit mysterious, but White had chances to hold with 25. Nd1

Kernetsky - Gibson 1-0
Black gets punished for exposing his castled king with f5 and g5.

Kuropatwa -Bince 0-1
White shows some nice imagination with 24. Nxf7(although the unplayed 24...Nxg4 refutes it); unfortunately he misses something on the next move.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Cecil's Saturday Puzzle - June 7, 2008

Cecil's Saturday Puzzle - June 7, 2008 - Winnipeg Free Press

White to mate in 2 (Funk)

Once again, as is typical in these mate- in-2 problems, the Black king is stalemated at the moment.
How to apply a check ? I don't know, but I spotted a concentration of Black pieces covering the c5 square, which quickly checking a few moves, gives me an inspiration for a quick solution, 1. Rc5+, but it doesn't come close to working.
I keep on having a problem keeping an eye on both e5 and d4, as I want to deliver mate with one of the knights.

How about 1.Bc5 covering e5, threatening Nfe3 mate , and also setting up some deflections?
1...Rxc5 2. Rd7#
1...Bxc5 Qxc6#

1...e3 Bg2#
1...Ndxc5 2. Bc4#
(ah, that is what the white squared bishop is for !)

1...Qe1 or Qxf1 (to prevent Neg3 mate)
2. Qa2 #

That's it.