Another 5-0 in another Washington Open Scholastic

Another 5-0 in another Washington Open Scholastic

NM Joseph_Truelson

Picture is of the trophies that were awarded at this tournament, the Washington Open Scholastic. Technically the Washington Chess Federation took this picture, but I took all the stuff in it.

(Notice: This is my first blog in a long time, and maybe to many people's dismay, I haven't tried that hard to be funny, instead I'm focusing more on the actual event. So if you actually want to read this blog, I suggest you get a cup of coffee or tea, otherwise you'll probably fall asleep attempting to read this)

For those of you who didn't know but want to know: The Washington Open Scholastic was held on Saturday May 27, 2017. It was a 5 round Swiss with a time control of 30 minutes. There were no cash prizes, only trophies, but you're still expected to pay an entry fee of $25, which, as I've noted, is more than the cost to buy the trophies that they award. Why don't people buy their own trophies and claim that they've won a bunch of events that they haven't? I don't know, because I've bought a couple dozen trophies to look impressive.

My section, the top one, meant for 7th-12th graders, had a notably low attendance this year, only 9 players. There were 14 last year. But the competition wasn't necessarily easier, Drake Borden (1351-1459) and Munkhbileg Munkh-Erdene (1567-1541) could give me a tough time on a good day, or if I had an especially bad one.

As is sort of standard for me when going to most events, since my high school gives us bus cards that we can use to go anywhere in the Seattle Area (for free!), I took the bus to the tournament. In order to be safe, I left way too early, around 6:30, but I've missed the bus multiple times so I wasn't going to risk being late. I spent the bus ride using the "Play Magnus" app on my iPad. I generally lose to age 10, and this wasn't different. I got crushed multiple times. It appears that the Sicilian is one of "his" specialties. I arrived at the venue, Embassy Suites Lynnwood, pretty early, around *;19 or so. That gave me over an hour before the games would begin.

I used that time to talk to players, mainly ones in my section in this tournament, trying to tell them that it's ok to lose tome, I'm way higher rated than them, so they shouldn't try so hard to beat me. Since I'm higher rated they had to agree to me, but that didn't mean they'd listen to my "advice".

The pairings came up only a few minutes late, a near record, and I was paired against Mary Deng (785-751), who had decided to play up (she's in 6th grade) for no really good reason. Fortunately, I knew I'd win because of what I'd done before the game. Her brother is 1900, and gives her chess lessons, so I told him not to teach her anything that she could use to beat me, in exchange I would let him stay in the "RAR" group (Link here , this blog's main purpose is to be an advertisement for that group). He thanked me profusely for allowing him this opportunity. Instead of focusing on the various ways I might cheat and the art of removing pieces from the board illegally without your opponent noticing, his lessons focused on obscure ideas like positional chess and trying to gain slight advantages. That's probably why I was able to win, players who aren't prepared for me don't tend to do very well.


My section during round 1

After the game, many players told me that it was rude to promote to 5 queens (there were maybe 3 people watching me, and they each told 3 and so forth until the whole world knew about the incident), but I was ready (maybe I wasn't ready, but I did it anyways) to defend myself, saying "It's not my fault she didn't resign!" and "chess tournaments are supposed to be fun, what's wrong with me making it fun?"

My opponent was a very good sport about the game, probably because she hadn't known about my deal with her brother and I was more than double her rating. Our game had been relatively long, so that left us with only around 20 minutes before the next round, certainly not long enough to do anything that crazy. I think I might have played a blitz game a or two before my next game, which was against another girl (4 of the 9 players in my section were girls!), Beatrice Raugei.

Once again, my opponent reacted very well to losing, telling me "You're really good!" If someone had humiliated me like that and promoted to 3 knights, I would have told them they were horrible at chess, even though all the evidence would have suggested otherwise.

After round 2, it was time for the lunch break. Many players left to blow their money on food, but I stayed, eating 2 apples for lunch (I ate around 10 apples over the course of the whole tournament). I decided to arrange some bughouse games, and with various players, attempted to have fun playing bughouse. Unfortunately, it was actually kind of hard, since many of the younger players that we convinced to play with us preferred throwing the pieces instead of moving them, or they would make too many illegal moves. After a while, it got too tiring, so I decided to relax and impart my wisdom on anyone who was willing to strike a conversation with me.

The third round came, and since only me and another kid, Drake Borden, had 2 points, we played each other. We'd played each other before and I'd beaten him, this time he thought it wasn't fair that I was playing since I was too good, but if that was the case, then why didn't he accept the resignation offer I gave him before the game began?

I was fairly satisfied with my play at this point. I hadn't entered any losing positions, which I'd done in every other scholastic event that I have played in. That all changed however, in my next game, against Munkhbileg Munkh-Erdene, the second highest rated player in my section.

Now I'd technically won my section, but the trophies aren't awarded in this tournament based on place, but on your total score. So that meant that I couldn't take any pity on y last round opponent, who I'd known and seen many times before. Before the game, he asked if I'd resign. I thought he was joking, but it soon became clear that he wasn't. He really wanted to win this game to get a trophy, and he knew that if I was trying, that it wouldn't be possible. I'll explain more in the game notes, and why the ending of the game appears to make no sense.

So as a shocker to all of you (who didn't read the title), I scored 5-0 and won the Washington Open Scholastic! Go me!

In the end, I gained 4 rating points (1955-1959) from this tournament, as well as having an amazing time. Recently, scholastic events have failed to disappoint me, the results or the experience.

After the event though, since I had won sort of easily, I'm more open to stopping to play in scholastic events (many people told me I should), particularly if the players don't want me in there. One player told me that it was fine if I play, as long as if I played that I wouldn't win, but I don't think I'd agree to a draw against him unless I was bribed.

Anyways, that concludes the good part of my whole Washington Open experience. The next two days, I would have to play against much harder competition, in the main event. Did I manage to get the same success that I had here and win? Or, did I revert back to my normal playing style and suffer a huge rating loss?

Find out these extremely important questions next month, when I post my blogs on the Washington Open.

Thanks for reading this, except if you:

1. Use anything I've written in this blog against me.

2. Think that this was a bad blog

3. Realize that a bunch of this was made up

4. Want to get revenge against me the next time I play you.