Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Joe Fieder Memorial

One of the great things about chess is the opportunity to meet new people and travel to new places. I did just that yesterday when I visited Random Lake, WI (Population 1551) for the 11th Joe Feider Memorial Tournament. (5 round swiss, G/30, Unrated)

This tournament is held in memory of Joe Fieder, an avid chess player who succumbed to a car accident in 1979.

It is organized by Edward Ferber ("Doc") with support from the Fieder family, the local library and other volunteers.

Keanu Davis receiving the Junior High trohy from "Doc"

"Doc" has a collection of over 200 chess sets and we had the opportunity to see and play on some of them. Kudos to "Doc" for a great event conducted in a friendly, welcoming atmosphere complete with snacks (chess cookies, fruit cake etc.) and hot beverages.

There were 34 participants. I was the 4th seed. I won the tournament on tie breaks with a score of 4.5 / 5.0 and received a nice clock trophy for my effort.
Round 4
I was paired against former master Larry Ahrens . I was happy with my play and won the end game although I missed 24...Rxd4 which would have given me a clear edge. Stephane Desmoulin(1675) upset 4 time winner Paul La Cosse (1816).

Round 5
I had White against Stephane in the last round. I thought I was doing better most of the game, but got myself into time trouble and made several bad moves. I was able to hold the opposite colored bishop with a pawn down to secure the draw.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Season's Greetings

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year to all. I hope that the new year brings you lots of chess knowledge/rating points.

I finished 2007 with 2 personal bests:

Highest rating : 1890
Highest Published rating: 1890 (Feb 2008)

These are my 2008 resolutions that I hope will push me over 2000 in 2008:

1) Average 7 hrs of sleep a night
2) Average 30 min of cadio. per day and 2-3 days of strength training per week.
3) Drink more water (64 oz/day) and eat healthy.

4) Average 50 CTS problems per day
5) Repeat the ~1200 CT-ART 3.0 problems 7 times (Errant Knights)
6) Create a binder of positions in which I missed the best move, print them out, and solve them regularly. (See comments by A. Vaja in this entry)
7) Read the following books:
Tal's Winning Chess Combinations
Art of Attack in Chess by Vladmir Vukovic
The Life and games of Mikail Tal
Rook endings
8) Play 5-10 rated games a month

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Training Game etc.

There are several big tournaments held during the Christmas break. Three of Wisconsin's top active players BETANELI, ALEXANDER (2287), VAJA, ASHISH (2239) and SANTARIUS, ERIK F (2177) will be heading out to the 34th Annual Eastern Open in DC.

Fellow chess traveller JAYNE, RYAN D (1697) will be heading out to the North American Open in Las Vegas. He will be one of the top seeds in the U1700 section and has a very good chance to finish on top, since I think that he is under rated by at least 150 points. This is the prize list for the U1700 section:

$10,000-5,000-3,000-2,000-1,000-800-700-600-500-400 (67% guaranteed)

May the four of them bring back lots of cash and rating points!

As part of Ryan's preparation for the NA Open, we played the following training game:

Me (1893) - Jayne,R (1679)
[E91]Training Game 60 (5 sec. increment),

1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 g6 3.c4 Bg7 4.Nc3 0-0 5.e4 d6 6.Be2 Na6 7.0-0 e5 8.Be3 [ 8.dxe5 dxe5 9.Qc2; 8.Re1] 8...Ng4 9.Bg5 Qe8 10.h3 [ 10.dxe5 Nxe5 11.Qd2 ( 11.Nd4 Bd7 12.Qd2 f6 13.Be3 Qf7) ] 10...h6 11.Bc1 exd4 12.Nxd4 Nf6 13.f3 [ 13.Re1 Nxe4 14.Bd3; 13.Qc2] 13...Nh5 14.Be3 Ng3 15.Re1 Nxe2+ 16.Rxe2 [ 16.Ndxe2] 16...Nc5 17.Qd2 Kh7 18.Nd5 Qd8 19.b4 [ 19.Nb5 c6] 19...Ne6 20.Rc1 [ 20.Rf1] 20...c6 21.Nc3 Qh4 22.Bf2 [ 22.f4 Bxd4 23.Bxd4 Nxd4 24.Qxd4 Qxf4 25.Rf1 Qe5] 22...Bxd4 23.Bxd4 Nf4 24.Ree1 [ 24.Rf2 Bxh3 25.Be3 g5 26.gxh3 Nxh3+ 27.Kg2 Nxf2 28.Bxf2] 24...Qg3 [ 24...Bxh3-+ 25.gxh3 Qg3+ 26.Kf1 Qxf3+ 27.Kg1 Qg3+ 28.Kh1 Qxh3+ 29.Kg1 Nd3] 25.Kh1 [ 25.Be3 Nxh3+ 26.Kh1 Ng5 27.f4 Ne6 28.Ne2] 25...Bxh3 26.gxh3 Qxf3+ 27.Kg1 Qg3+ 28.Kh1 Qxh3+ 29.Kg1 Qg3+ 30.Kh1 f5 [ 30...Nd3 31.Rcd1 Nxe1 32.Rxe1 f5 33.Rg1] 31.Rg1 [ 31.Re3 Qh4+ 32.Qh2 Qxh2+ 33.Kxh2 Ne6] 31...Qh3+ 32.Qh2 Qf3+ 33.Rg2 Nxg2 34.Qxg2 Qxg2+ 35.Kxg2 f4 36.Kf3 g5 37.Rg1 Kg6 38.e5 dxe5 39.Bxe5 Rae8 40.Bd4 0-1

Some interesting moments:

Position after 15. Re1

Here Black played 16...Nxe2, I was happy to see this move as I think it is mistake to take my bad Bishop.

Position after 23...Nf4
Here the only way for White to stay a slightly ahead is to play 24.Rf2, 24. Ree1 loses to Bxh3

Position after 24...Qg3 Here I had to find the only move 25.Be3, but I played 25.Kh1 which loses to Bxh3
Position after 30.f5I get one last chace to save the game with 31.Re3, but I play 31.Rg1 which loses.

I was happy with my position after White's 21st move. I was getting behind on time and wanted to gain some time on the clock and quickly played 22.Bf2, which was my first mistake, later I had to find many only moves in time trouble and did not do so. Black didn't play the best moves either, and I still had a chace to come back with 31. Re3.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Blogger Profiles

I thought it would be a good idea if we bloggers had the opportunity
say, "hi" online or if we visit another blogger's city.

In order to facilitate that I created the following:

Blogger Profiles

Your real name is optional so you can remain anonymous if you wish.

Please forward this to anyone else that might be interested.
email your information to:

iwijetunge [at] yahoo [dot] com

Or leave it in comment form.

Blog Name:
Real name: (optional)

Handles :
FIDE Rating (estimate if you don't have one) (Optional) :

Friday, December 14, 2007

Almost 1900 (1890)

I finished with 4.5 / 5.0 in the double round quad. I won the quad with game in hand. The last game (me vs Garvin) will not be played.

1890 STANLEY T GARVIN 3.0 / 5.0
1852 Me 4.5 / 5.0
1813 ARLEN P WALKER 3.5 / 6.0
1697 JOSEPH H HETZEL 0.0 / 6.0

Rating gain 1851 - 1890

Since my next tournament won't will be till the 44th Northeastern Open , January 26-27, my February rating of 1890 will be a personal best.

I have scored 7-0=1 in my last 8 games at the Waukesha Chess Club.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Last round loss from the Wisconsin Memorial

This is my last round loss against Erik Santarius (2177) from the Wisconsin Memorial.

Comments from Alex Betaneli (2287)
"Erik and I looked at it for a long time last night and found fascinating things, many turning points. In particular I suggest to Ivan to identify moments when he went from clearly better to slightly better to even to slightly worse to much worse to hopelessly lost"

Click here for games replay

The first few moves of a chess game is usually a dance where each player is trying to provoke the other to move the game along in a direction that is more familiar to himself.

1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nc6 I have never encountered this move. The Chigorin Defense is 1.d4 d5 2.c4 Nc6. So I could get into it by playing c4 here, but I decided to play 3.Bf4 since I figured my opponent knew the main lines better than I did.

3.Bf4 e6 4.e3 Bd6 5.Bxd6Since my remaining bishop was better than his, I decided to exchange. I also considered:

Bg3 with ideas of opening the h-file if the Bishop was taken, Or


Or simply allowing ...Bxf4
5... cxd6

Black gets another pawn to the center, protects the e5 square and hopes to find counter-play on the c-file

6.c4 Nf6 7.Nc3 dxc4 8.Bxc4 0-0 9.0-0 a6

Black tries to expand on the q-side.

10.a4I put a stop to q-side expansion ideas by Black, but create a hole on b4, but I did not consider this a major issue since a4 is a very common move in QG games. I considered 10 d5. It was probably a better move.

10.a4 e5 11.dxe5 dxe5 12.Qxd8 Rxd8 13.Ng5

** White is Better

Better bishop, ahead in development, able to use the d-file first, the Black e-pawn is a target. The only advantage I see for Black is that he has a pawn on the 5th rank and mine is on the 3rd.

I was very happy with my position, and was sure that White could not lose. I thought that I could exchange as many pieces as possible and get an easy draw. It is never a good idea to play for a draw and in fact that is a sure way to lose.

I should have:

1.Controlled the d-file

2.Centralized my king

13...Rf8 14.Nd5
I offered a draw here

A better way to exchange the Knight was to play 14.Nge4, then Black does not get a tempo by attacking the Bishop, and if Black takes the Knight my Knight remains actively placed.

14...Nxd5 15.Bxd5 Nb4 16.Bc4

I didn't want to part with the Bishop, as it was on a good diagonal, but simply 16.Rfd1 might have been better, why lose a tempo?

16...Bd7 17.Nf3I lost way too much time with this Knight and let Black get all his pieces out while it moved aimlessly around. The idea was to put pressure on the e-pawn.

***White is slightly Better

17...Rfe8 18.Ng5 Re7

I have given Black 2 free moves

19.Ne4I thought that d3 might be good square for the Knight.

19...Bc6 20.Nc3

Decided to come back to c3 as I now saw that Black could easily double rooks on the d-file, and I had to challenge him.

***Equal 20.... Rd8 21.Rfd1 Red7 22.b3

After exchanges a4 needs to be protected, 22.a5 might have been better

***Black is slightly better

22...Kf8 23.Rxd7 Rxd7 24.Rd1 Rxd1+ 25.Nxd1 Ke7

I was afraid of 25...b5

26.Nc3 f6
27.h4.Kd6 28.e4
I didn't think that the Black King could do anything on the q-side, but I was wrong. Actually in some variations I may have been correct, if the White knight enters the Black k-side. 27.h4 was wrong, the idea was to move the pawns to black squares 28.e4 was a mistake. I was afraid of Black's king getting into the q-side after exchanging twice on d5, but I didn't have to exchange off both minors. This move obstructs my own bishop. 28.Bg8 was much better.

*** Black is better

Kc5 29.f3 Nc2 30.Na2?? (Black wins a pawn and the game 30.Bg8 is much better)

My first big mistake and it is decisive. With the Black pieces so active I t may not have made much difference. Since all three black pieces are attacking on the q-side and I am defending with 2, (With the knight running short of squares) it may have been too late to save the game.

***Black is winning

30...Bxa4 31.Bg8 Be8 32.Kf2 Kd4 33.Bd5 b6 34.Bc4 b5 35.Bd5 Kd3 36.b4 Nd4 37.Bg8 Kc2 38.Ke3 Bd7 39.Bd5 Be6 0-1

The position below is from a possible unplayed variation. What is interesting about is that White is actually better. Although the Black king is very aggressively placed it is also too far away to protect the k-side pawns and the White knight starts to munch on them. My h4 move actually makes sense in this variation!

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Wisconsin Memorial

ROBERT JOYNT JR vs GEREMY SAM WEBNE-BEHRMAN (Round 1) closest to the camera.

There were nearly 80 players. Congratulations to Guy Hoffman and Mike Nietman for a well run event.

5.0 Betaneli
4.5 Santarius
4.5 Joynt

USCF Results

I finished 3-1 (+ a bye)

I won the Wisconsin Tour Class-A prize.(Thanks to Parker's oversight)

Parker was winning the last round game against the top seed ROBERT JOYNT JR(2305), but thought the first time control was 40/2 instead of 45/2. He made 42 moves and lost on time!

That cost him ~$200( $83 - Wisconsin Tour Class-A + half of (2nd overall $125 + 1st A $100) )

I was disappointed that I lost the following last round game against ERIK F SANTARIUS(2177). I am White with the move. Although I knew better I tried to play for the draw by exchanging off pieces.(Playing for a draw is a sure way to lose!) I should have controlled the open d-file instead. A better way to exchange the knight was to play Nce4 instead of Nd5.
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bf4 e6 4.e3 Bd6 5.Bxd6 cxd6 6.c4 Nf6 7.Nc3 dxc4 8.Bxc4 0-0 9.0-0 a6 10.a4 e5 11.dxe5 dxe5 12.Qxd8 Rxd8 13.Ng5 Rf8 14.Nd5 Nxd5 15.Bxd5 Nb4 16.Bc4 Bd7 17.Nf3 Rfe8 18.Ng5 Re7 19.Ne4 Bc6 20.Nc3 Rd8 21.Rfd1 Red7 22.b3 Kf8 23.Rxd7 Rxd7 24.Rd1 Rxd1+ 25.Nxd1 Ke7 26.Nc3 f6 27.h4 [ 27.f3 Kd6 28.Kf2 Kc5 29.Bg8 h6 30.Ke2] 27...Kd6 28.e4 Kc5 29.f3 Nc2 30.Na2?? [ 30.Bg8 Kb4 31.Nd5+ Bxd5 32.exd5 Kc5 33.Bxh7 Ne3 34.Kf2 Nxd5 35.Be4] 30...Bxa4 31.Bg8 Be8 32.Kf2 Kd4 33.Bd5 b6 34.Bc4 b5 35.Bd5 Kd3 36.b4 Nd4 37.Bg8 Kc2 38.Ke3 Bd7 39.Bd5 Be6 *

Tuesday, December 04, 2007


In preparation for the 2008 Chicago Open, I am thinking of joining the Errant Knights. There are 164 days before tournament, so that should give me enough time. I plan to start on Dec. 10th.

My next tournament is the Wisconsin Memorial Dec. 8-9. My goal is to score 4/5 (Same score as last year) Actually 3.5/4, since I usually take a bye on the first day since it's a bit ridiculous to play 3 games with a time control of 45/2;25/1;SD/1 in one day. Yes, that's right, up to 24 hours of chess in one day! Some of these Wisconsin tournaments are probably the only ones with adjournments. Last year I had the misfortune of having my first 2 rounds adjourned. I had taken a 3rd round bye, but had to come back after the 3rd round to complete the adjournments. Needless to say the games went on until early the next day.

On a side note there is an interesting race for the Wisconsin Tour A Class. This is the last event of the 2007 tour.