Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Checkmate Open 2011

"Hungarians are strange creatures"
Zong-Yuan Zhao

Case in point: Andras Toth

The Checkmate Open was held over the last weekend on the 9-10th of July. The arbiter for the tournament was not Charles Zworestine, who was going to play his first weekender in over 10 years!

The first round was played on Friday night ... at a bowling alley and not over the chess board. Charles kept going on about him bowling a turkey, but we can find no evidence to back up his claim. The score sheet may or may not have been lost at some point over the weekend. The disappointment seemed to take its toll on Charles as he was so "sick" the following morning that he had to pull a Novak Djokovic and withdraw from the tournament.

Now for the real first round which commenced only 20 minutes late, which has to be some kind of Australian record. The top seeds had a generally easy round except for James Morris who had a tough endgame against Frank Lekkas which dwindled down to a draw and Andrew Brown who played a nice game but then blundered in time trouble against Edgar Mdinaradze and he had to settle for half a point.

In round 2, Sam Grigg notched up an upset over Andrew, after Perpie again blundered in time trouble, this time in a drawn minor piece endgame. Edgar Mdinaradze continued his good form, drawing with Mark Chapman who had already taken a half point bye in the first round. Most of the other top seeds reached 2/2. 

In the third round, Ron Scott had an upset draw against second seed GM Darryl Johansen, although neither player was happy with the game which was extremely boring while Trevor Tao managed to win a drawn rook and pawn ending against Sam Grigg, setting up a clash with Zong-Yuan Zhao in round 4. Perpie chalked up his first win of the tournament ... down on board 11 ... while Fedja, white, somehow swindled the full point from the following position against Mdinaradze playing the last 20 minutes of the game on only the 10 second increment.

Kevin Sheldrick had the whole tournament hall in laughter as he turned up to his board a few minutes before the forfeit time dressed up as a pirate.

Kevin the Pirate

Kevin won his round 3 game against Anthony Milton, but went down to Alistair Cameron in round 4 in an extremely tricky endgame which was probably drawn until Kevin moved his king outside the square of the passed h-pawn. 

1. Kc5?? (1.Ke5 keeping the opposition and diagonal opposition holds, for example 1... Kc6 2.Ke4 ) h4 0-1

On board 1, Trevor Tao blew the tournament wide open by beating top seed Zong-Yuan Zhao. Sam owned the second member of the Zulfic house by hacking Fedja after a dynamic position arose from a Grunfeld and Fedja failed to find the best defence in time pressure.

Grigg,Sam - Zulfic,Fedja [D85]
Checkmate Open (4.6), 09.07.2011
[Mainly Rybka 4]

1.c4? Nf6 2.Nc3 d5 3.cxd5 Nxd5 4.d4 g6 5.e4 Nxc3 6.bxc3 Bg7 7.Nf3 c5 8.Be3 0–0 9.Be2 Nc6 10.0–0 cxd4 11.cxd4 Bg4 12.d5 Bxf3 13.gxf3?! Na5 14.Bd4  (D)

b6?! [14...Qd6 A more natural move preventing the immediate advance of the f-pawn. 15.Bxg7 Kxg7 16.Qd4+ Kg8 17.e5 Nc6 18.exd6 Nxd4 19.dxe7 Nxe2+ 20.Kg2 Rfe8 21.d6 Nf4+ 22.Kg3 Nd5 23.Rfe1=] 15.Bxg7 Kxg7 16.Qd4+ Kg8 17.f4 Rc8 18.Rac1 Qd6 19.e5 Qa3 20.Rxc8 Rxc8 21.f5 Sam is a hacker 21...Qxa2 22.Bd3 Qd2 23.fxg6 hxg6 24.e6 (D)

24...f5? [24...Qg5+ 25.Kh1 Nb3! 26.exf7+ Kxf7 27.Qe4 Qf6µ] 25.d6 Qg5+ [25...exd6 26.Qf6 Qxd3 27.Qxg6+ Kh8 28.Qf6+ Kg8 29.Qf7+ Kh8 30.e7+-] 26.Kh1 exd6 27.Rg1 Rc1 28.Bf1 Qh5 29.e7 Qf3+ 30.Bg2 Rxg1+ 31.Kxg1 Qe2 32.Bd5+ Kh7 33.Qe3 Qd1+ 34.Kg2 Qxd5+ 35.f3 f4 36.Qe2 Qg5+ 37.Kh1 1-0

Trevor maintained his lead in round 5 with a draw with Darryl, while the house struck back with Zong-Yuan beating Sam in a game of missed chances. Alistair Cameron had a good upset draw on board 3 against Bobby Cheng.

Zhao,Zong-Yuan - Grigg,Sam [A90]
Checkmate Open (5.2), 10.07.2011
[Zong-Yuan Zhao]
1.d4 e6 2.c4 f5 3.g3 Nf6 4.Bg2 c6 a subtle move order designed to fight against the Nh3 plans since black can still arrange to play d6 and e5 5.Nf3 [5.Nh3 d6 6.0–0 Be7 7.Nf4 e5] 5...d5 6.0–0 Bd6 7.b3 Qe7 preventing an immediate Ba3 8.Bb2 0–0 9.Nbd2 b6 [9...Bd7 10.Ne5 Be8 11.Ndf3 Bh5 12.Nd3 is maybe a bit better for white] 10.Ne5 Bb7 11.Rc1 c5! (D) [11...Nbd7 12.cxd5 cxd5 13.Ndc4! now that b7 is unprotected white has this neat little trick (13.Nc6 Qf7 14.Nf3 Rfc8 15.Nfe5 Qe8=) 13...Rfc8 14.Nxd6 Qxd6 15.Qd3²]  

12.e3 [12.dxc5 Higher intervention from...Rybka4 12...bxc5 (12...Bxc5 13.cxd5 exd5 (13...Nxd5 14.e4 Nf6 15.Qe2) 14.Nd3) 13.cxd5 exd5 14.Ndc4! if 14...Bc7? (D) (14...dxc4 this is best 15.Bxb7 Bxe5 16.Bd5+ (16.Bxe5 Qxb7) 16...Nxd5 (16...Kh8 17.Bxe5 Nxd5 18.Qxd5 Nd7 19.Bd6 Qf7 20.Qxf7 Rxf7 21.Rxc4) 17.Qxd5+ Qf7 18.Qxf7+ (18.Qxe5 Nd7 19.Qd6) 18...Kxf7 19.Bxe5 Nd7 20.Bf4 cxb3 21.axb3 Rfc8²)

15.Ng6!! hxg6 16.Bxf6 Qe6 17.Be7!! Qxe7 18.Bxd5+ Bxd5 19.Qxd5+ Kh7 20.Qxa8] 12...Rd8 13.Qe2 Bxe5 14.dxe5 Ne4 15.Rfd1 Nc6 16.g4 Nxd2 17.Rxd2?! now black has the chance to seize the initiative [17.cxd5! Rxd5! (17...exd5 18.Rxd2 Nxe5 19.gxf5 Rd6 20.f4 Nf7 21.b4²) 18.Bxd5 exd5 19.Rxd2 Nxe5 20.Bxe5 Qxe5 21.b4 c4 (21...d4 22.bxc5) 22.Rd4 Re8÷] 17...dxc4! 18.Rxd8+ Rxd8 19.gxf5 (D)

c3? this was a Sam cheapo as now f6 is met by cxb2! hehe =) [19...Qg5 20.f4 Qxf5 21.bxc4 Na5 22.Bxb7 Nxb7 and this is better for black as the white king is unsafe and also he has many queenside weaknesses 23.Bc3 (23.Rd1 Rxd1+ 24.Qxd1 Na5 (24...h5) ) 23...Rd3 (23...Qe4 24.Kf2) 24.Kf2 Nd8 25.Rd1 Rxc3 26.Rxd8+ Kf7 27.Kg3 Ke7] 20.Bxc3 Qg5 21.f4 Qxf5 the difference is that now white is to move! 22.Rd1 Qf8 23.Kf2 Rxd1 24.Qxd1 Qd8?! [24...Qe7 25.Qd6 Kf7 26.Kg3²] 25.Qd6 Qh4+? [25...Kf7 26.Kg3²] 26.Kg1 Qg4 (D) played at top notch speed 

27.h3?? [27.Qd7 was white's intention but was then convinced he missed Qxg2+ 27...Qxg2+ 28.Kxg2 Nxe5+ and black wins...wait isn't b7 hanging duh  29.Qxb7+-] 27...Qg6? [27...Qg3! forces white to be extremely accurate 28.Bd2! (28.Qxe6+ this was white's intention 28...Kf8 29.Qf5+ Ke7 30.Qg5+ Qxg5 31.fxg5 Nd8 32.Bf1 Ne6 33.h4 Be4 and it looks like black can hold ) 28...Qg6 29.Kh2] 28.Kh2 Qe8 29.f5 Nd8 30.Bxb7 Nxb7 31.Qc7 Nd8 32.f6 Nf7 33.Qxa7 gxf6 [33...Qd8 34.Qe7] 34.exf6 Qd8 35.Qe7 Qxe7 36.fxe7 Nd6 37.Be5 Ne8 (D)

38.a4?! [38.Bb8! Kf7 (38...b5 39.a4 c4 40.Be5 bxa4 41.bxa4 c3 42.Bxc3) 39.Ba7 Kxe7 40.Bxb6 Kd6 41.Kg3 Nf6 42.Kf3 Nd5 43.Ba5] 38...Kf7 39.Bb8 Nf6 [39...Kxe7 is better 40.Ba7 Kd6 41.Bxb6 Kc6 42.Ba5 Nd6 43.Bc3±] 40.Bc7 Nd5 41.Bd8 c4 42.bxc4 Nxe3 43.Bxb6 [43.c5 bxc5 44.a5 c4 45.a6 c3 46.a7 c2 47.a8Q c1Q 48.e8Q+! (48.Qf3+ Nf5 49.Qh5+ Kg7 50.e8N+ Kf8) 48...Kxe8 49.Bg5+ Kf7 50.Qf3+] 43...Nxc4 44.Bc5 Na5 45.Kg3 Nc6 46.Kf4 h6 47.h4 Ke8 48.Ke4 Kd7 49.h5 Ke8 50.Kd3 Na5 51.Kc3 Kd7 52.Kb4 Nc6+ 53.Kb5 e5 54.e8B+ 1–0

Round 6 saw Trevor seal at least equal first by crushing James Morris in 45 minutes as his nearest competitors Yuan and Darryl drew on board 2. Lower down in the field, Sam confirmed his reputation as the world's biggest hacker against Mdinaradze.

Grigg,Sam - Mdinaradze,Edgar [A22]
Checkmate Open (6.6), 10.07.2011
1.c4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.g3 c6 4.Nf3 d6 Better is [4...e4 5.Nd4 d5 6.cxd5 cxd5] 5.d3 Be7 6.Bg2 Na6 7.0–0 0–0 8.Rb1 Nc7 9.b4 Ne6 10.a4 Nd7 11.e4 Re8 12.Be3 Bf6 13.Qd2 Nc7 14.Ne1 Nf8 15.f4 exf4 16.gxf4 Bg4 Blacks play has been extremely passive and thus allows white a perfect wall of pawns with 17.d4 (D)

Qd7 18.e5 Bh4? was a waste of a tempo, best was [18...Be7 immediately 19.exd6 Bxd6 20.c5 Be7] 19.Nf3 Be7 20.b5 dxe5?? is simply losing 21.bxc6! bxc6 22.Nxe5 Qf5 23.Bxc6 Bh3 24.Bxa8 Nxa8 25.Rf3 Nb6 26.Rb5 Qh5 27.Rg3 white has consolidated his position and now...to have some fun 27...Bf5 28.c5 Nc8 29.d5 Bh4 30.d6 Bxg3 31.hxg3 a6 32.Rb7 Qh3 33.Bf2 Rd8 34.Rxf7 Ng6 35.Rc7 Nxe5 36.Qd5+ Be6 37.Qxe5 Bc4 38.Qxg7# 1–0

Round 7 saw Trevor and Bobby agree a draw in a complex position giving Trevor outright tournament victory. Ronald Scott joined Bobby in equal third place by beating Zong-Yuan in a Bf4 Grunfeld which allowed Darryl to take second place with an amusing win over Sam Grigg. Alistair Cameron finished a good tournament with a final round win over Frank Lekkas giving him a share of third as well.

Johansen,Darryl - Grigg,Sam [A22]
Checkmate Open (7.3), 10.07.2011
1.c4 e5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Nf3 Here Sam had a mental blank and played... 3...e4? 4.Ng5 Bb4 To pin the d2 pawn [4...b5 is actually playable although white is probably better after  5.d3 bxc4 6.dxe4] 5.Ncxe4 Nxe4 6.Nxe4 Now 6...Qh4 Sam's opening was so random that Darryl thought he had 'prepped this from Secrets of Openings Surprises'. However, Sam didn't even realise that such a book existed! 7.Qb3 Better was [7.Qc2 0–0 White has consolidated his position and is easily much better] 7...Nc6 8.Nc3 0–0 9.e3 Re8 10.Be2 d6 11.Nd5 Bg4 12.Bxg4 Qxg4 13.0–0 Ba5 And white went on to win. 1–0

Mark Chapman's last round game against James Morris had a cute finish. Black had just played Qa5-e5.

1. Rxh7!! BAM

And black resigned due to 1...Qxf4 2. Bxf7 Kf8 3.Ne6#

Over the course of the weekend, one arbiter-cum-chessgroupie accidentally implied he was a turkey, a geek, a noob and a camel. Below is an artist's depiction of this mythical creature.

The Zworebeast: Any resemblance to a certain IA is purely coincidental and totally denied by the relevant party.