Saturday, October 28, 2006

Governor's Cup : Oct 27-29 (Sioux Falls,SD)

I played in the U2000 section and tied for 2nd-3rd.That was worth $400. I also got my rating up to 1856.

Here are the results.

This was a great, well directed tournament and I recommend it highly. One of the highlights was the “chess social” that was held at the Knudson residence. Where else would mere patzers like us get to hang out with GMs and IMs while partaking in a sumptuous spread?

I got into time trouble in all my games, but managed 3.5/4. (I took a bye in the first round to finish 4/5). The main reason I am getting into time trouble is that I am trying to be careful in order to minimize errors, but this is counter productive since the lack of time introduces errors later in the game.

This is the game 4 victory over the #2 seed.

chess social

Thursday, October 19, 2006

A good result

I finally had a good result. I went 4-0 with a performance rating of 2000 in the Waukesha Chess Club 4 round swiss, which should bring my rating upto 1841, but that loss from the other tournament that I taked about in my last post will cost me about 25 points, so I will be around 1816 when that gets rated. Still, 3 tournaments in a row where I stay above my floor is good for me.

My next tournament is the Governor's Cup in South Dakota. Driving a total of about 16 hours might seem like a crazy idea, but I am making an exception since I have always wanted to play in the tornament.
This is the win from yesterday. I missed Rxf7, but other than that I was happy with my play. I got into time trouble again and had to play the last 10 moves with less than 8 min.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

A frustrating loss

A little background:

I know it’s silly to be concerned so much about ratings, but I can't help it. I finally managed to get my rating above the floor albeit by just 6 points. But I had the possibility of getting it even higher because I am currently playing in two local events:

Event 1 – Event ends Oct/17th

Game 1 Win 1250
Game 2 Win 1550
Game 3 Win 1900
Game 4 Win 1600

Event 2 Event ends Oct/18th

Game 1 loss 1900
Game 2 Draw 1800
Game 3 Loss 1733 - The game I am taking about.

When you are close to your floor the order in which the events get rated is important. For instance If I have 1 bad and 1 good performance. If the bad one gets rated first, I get to keep the points form the good one, but if the good one gets rated first I don’t. In this situation I have the latter case. (Event 2 has an official end date of 10/18 although I played the game yesterday)

Mistakes and other observations I made in this game:

1) I got over-confident after getting a great position. Mentally, I had already marked a 1 in the win column pretty early in the game.

2) When confronted with an unexpected move (20 ..Qe5) I panicked and did not look hard enough for a refutation. I should have done what Jose Gatica recommends in these situations - Walk away from the board so you can mentally adjust. With 21. Qd3 I am still winning. But this 2 move sequence Qd3, Qd4 is very hard to find in time trouble.

3) Did not look hard enough for tactics 15. B x c6 wins.

4) I was taking to Jose Gaticca about me getting into time trouble often. The obseravation he made is that becuase I am not tactically up to par, I take too long thinking about tactcal posibilties (even then I miss things). To really improve I have to train myself tactically so the ideas come to me without having to spend too much time. To address this issue, I am currently reading a book that Tim Crouse recomended. The is book called Understanding Chess Tactics . This book does a great job in breaking down tactical ideas.

5) What I was thinking just before/after the blunder.
"Can the Queen get out of the pin and cover all the knight escape routes" I didn't look hard enough and did not find 20 ..Qe5. So when he played it I panicked. What's ironic is that although there is such a square it still does not work becaouse of 21. Qd3, so my initial assessment was correct after all!

"There was such a square, now I am lost"
"I should have not played Nxb5"
"I should have just put pressure on the c pawn"

What I should have been thinking:

"Okay I didn't expect 20 ..Qe5, don't panic, calm down, look for a refutation" If I had done that I would probably have found 21. Qd3

The number of actual points I lose for this loss depends on the result of my round four game in the other event. According to my calculations:

Win 1854 1828 26
Draw 1831 1800 25
Loss 1818 1800 18

Column 2 Rating after good event
Column 3 Rating after bad event
Column 4 number of points this game cost.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Midwest Class Championships Oct -13-15

Ehlvest wins clear first with 4.5/5 beats Shulman in the last round

The top contenders were:
2679 GM Yuri Shulman
2666 GM Jaan Ehlvest
2573 GM Dmitry Gurevich
2500 IM Stanislav Smetankin
2456 IM Angelo Young
2445 FM Mehmed Pasalic
2435 FM Ruslan Ahundov
Smetankin, Gurevich, Ahundov - Playing in the 2 day event (Smetankin, Gurvich win, Ahundov loses to Ehlvest )
Shulman vs Nienart - 3 day event round 2 - Shulman wins


Magdalena Matyszewska 1984 (highest rated female player)

The father and son Karklins

Andrew Karklins 2311

Erik Karklins 2026 He is over 90 years old and maintains an expert rating!

4th round clash of the Eriks. Age difference around 70! years. Erik Santarius wins this and draws the last round to finish clear first in the U2200 and wins $1000.

I finished 3/5 (first round bye, 3rd round forfeit win) U2000

Rnd 2.Me (1800) - Bartlett,R (1733) [D30]Midwest Class, 14.10.2006
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 d5 3.c4 e6 4.Bg5 Be7 5.e3 Nbd7 6.Bd3 dxc4 7.Bxc4 h6 8.Bh4 0-0 9.Nc3 c6 [9...c5 10.dxc5 Nxc5 11.0-0] 10.0-0 b5 11.Bd3 Bb7 12.Rc1 a5 13.Bg3 Nh5 14.Be5 Nxe5 15.dxe5 [15.Nxe5 Nf6 16.Qf3] 15...g6 16.Ne4 [16.Qc2 Qe8 17.Nd4±] 16...Qb6 17.Nd4 Rad8 18.Qe2 Nf4 19.exf4 Rxd4 20.Qe3 Rfd8 21.Bb1 c5 22.Nf6+ Kg7 23.a3 Qc7 24.Ne4?? [24.Qxd4 Wins] 24...Bxe4 25.Bxe4 a4 26.g3 Qa5 27.Bc2 b4 28.axb4 cxb4 29.Ra1 b3 30.Bxb3 Qd2?? [30...Rd3 Wins for Black] 31.Qxd2 [31.Bxa4 Qxe3 32.fxe3 Rd2 33.b3] 31...Rxd2 32.Bxa4 Rxb2 33.Rab1 Rdd2 34.Rxb2 Rxb2 ½-½

I think I had a decent opening, I should have played 16.Qc2 and would have had a good game. We both got into time trouble and made many gross blunders. I could have won with 24.Qxd4 and he could have won with 30...Rd3

Rnd 4 Me (1800) - Magness,T (1857) [B11]Midwest Class (4), 15.10.2006
1.e4 c6 2.Nc3 d5 3.Nf3 Bg4 4.h3 Bh5 [ 4...Bxf3 5.Qxf3 e6 6.d3 Nf6 7.Bd2 Nbd7 8.g4 Qb6 9.0-0-0 d4 10.Ne2 Bb4 11.g5 Bxd2+ 12.Rxd2 Ng8] 5.exd5 cxd5 6.g4 Bg6 7.Bb5+ Nc6 8.Ne5 Rc8 9.d4 e6 10.h4 f6 11.Nxg6 hxg6 12.Qd3 Nge7 13.Be3 a6 14.Ba4 Qa5 15.0-0-0 b5 16.Bb3 Nb4 17.Qd2 Ng8 18.a3 Nc6 19.Qd3 Kd7 20.Qxg6 Nge7 21.Qd3 b4 22.Na4 Ng8 [ 22...bxa3 23.Nc5+ Ke8 24.bxa3 Qxa3+ 25.Kd2 Nb4] 23.Bd2 Bd6 24.Rde1 Rb8 25.g5 Qd8 26.Qe3 Qe7 27.Bxd5 exd5 [ 27...bxa3 28.Bxe6+ Kd8 29.Qe4 axb2+ 30.Kb1] 28.Qh3+ Kd8 29.Rxe7 Ngxe7 30.Qe6 Kc7 31.axb4 Nxb4 32.Nc5 Rhd8 33.Bxb4 Rxb4 34.Nxa6+ Kb7 35.Nxb4 Bxb4 36.gxf6 gxf6 1-0

I was not familiar with this variation of the Caro Kann. I didn't wan't to give up the 2 bishops on move 4, but looks like that was the best move.

Surprisingly Black is okay after 12...f5

Rnd 5 Me (1800) - Blackman,W (1893) [D21]Midwest Class (5), 15.10.2006
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 a6 3.c4 dxc4 4.a4 [ 4.e3 b5 5.a4 c6] 4...c6 5.Nc3 Nf6 6.e3 Be6 7.Ne5 Nbd7 8.Nxc4 Bxc4 9.Bxc4 Nb6 10.Bd3 e6 11.0-0 Be7 12.Bd2 a5 [ 12...e5 13.a5 exd4 14.exd4 Nbd5 15.Nxd5 Nxd5 16.Qg4] 13.Qe2 0-0 14.Ne4 Nbd5 15.Nxf6+ Nxf6 16.Bc3 Qc7 17.Rac1 Rfd8 18.f4 Bd6 19.Be1 Nd5 20.Rf3 g6 21.g4 Nxf4 [ 21...f5 22.g5 ( 22.gxf5 exf5 23.Qg2 Qe7 24.Bf2) ] 22.exf4 Bxf4 23.Rc4 Rd5 24.Qf2 Bd6 25.Bd2 [ 25.Be4 Rg5 26.Qh4 Be7 27.Bg3 Qd8 28.Qh6] 25...Bf8 26.Qh4 Rad8 27.Rh3 f5 28.gxf5 exf5 29.Bf4 [ 29.Rc1 Rxd4 30.Bc4+ Kh8 31.Bc3; 29.Bg5 R8d7; 29.Rc3 Rxd4 ( 29...Kh8 30.Bg5 R8d6 31.Bc4 Rxd4 32.Bf6+ Rxf6 33.Qxf6+ Bg7 34.Rxh7+ Kxh7 35.Rh3+ Bh6 36.Be6) 30.Bc4+ Kh8 31.Qf6+ Bg7 32.Rxh7+ Kxh7 33.Rh3+ Rh4 34.Rxh4+ Bh6 35.Rxh6#] 29...Qf7 [ 29...Qg7 30.Be5 Be7 31.Bxg7 ( 31.Qf4 Bf6) 31...Bxh4 32.Be5] 30.Be5 [ 30.Bg5 R8d7 31.Rc2 Rxd4 32.Bc4 Rxh4 33.Bxf7+ Kxf7 ( 33...Rxf7 34.Rxh4) 34.Rxh4] 30...Bd6 31.Qxd8+ 1-0

Black had a = game before he gave up the knight

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Corpus Christi - Texas

Took part in a fun-event in Corpus Christi, Texas, The Susan Polgar Giant Chess Set Tournament. (For teams of three)

The UT Brownsville team showed up, and they decided to have two teams one with their coach GM Gilberto Hernandez and the other with IM Daniel Fernandez.

The competition was lopsided to say the least with basically 400 rated players competing against GM/IM for the same prizes.

UT Brownsville finished 1st-2nd(Surprise! Surprise!)
We finished tied for 3rd-4th (4th on tie breaks), but the organizers decided not to split the prize money, but give it to the 3rd place team(based on tie breaks)

The 3rd place team lead by Bill Wheeler was very generous and decided to split the prize money with us.