World Open 2010, Playing for the big big money and overlooking simple mates.

Hi All, 

 I promised some folks I would give an update to my World Open Chess experience when I got back.  Sorry for the delay but lots going on.  This is my second go at the World open.  I played in it once before about 20 years ago.  I played in the under 2200 section (my unofficial rating was actually a little over 2200 so was on the higher rating end of players in the section).  I was playing in the 5 day schedule to start and started exactly as I did 20 years ago before going on a big run by losing my first game in fine fashion.  Then since I knew I had to take 2 half point byes the last day figured what the heck and re-entered the tournament in the 4 day schedule.  My first game in re-enter mode was a draw and then I won my next 5. 

Going into the 7th round me and this other guy were the only 5.5’s in the U2200 so I knew this game would be the biggest chess prize money game in my life.  Since I was taking 2 byes at the end (Had to get back home on Monday) a win would lock me in at 7.5 points and a loss at 6.5.  I was aware prior to playing that the guys who scored 7.5 in the section last year won over $10,000 while the 6.5 people won a mere $300.00. 

 During the 7th round game I recall being content to be playing a game for big money potential and waxing nostalgic about the tournament (Blah!).   Not nervous or intense at all.  My only problem was I wasn’t actually focused on playing the actual game and I lost in a total debacle. With 6.5 I ended up “winning” $500 (After subtracting entry fee+ Re-entry + hotel that puts my world open earnings at -.500 actually lol), the 7.5 players this year in the section took home over 8k.

In any case it was a great experience.  Lots of fun.  


2 positions below.  One is from my first round loss prior to my re-entry.  I overlook a simple mate by my opponent and lose my advantage. 

The second game is from my 5th round and my opponent does the same thing I did in the 1st round! Overlooks a simple mate in a good position for him.

In the diagram below, from round 1, prior to re-entry I'm playing black and it may look a little scary at first glance but black is actually doing quite well.  If black could get that extra light squared bishop he has for the few pawns on that a8, h1 diagonal it would be a monster!  Well how would you do that if you’re black?  Would you do it in more caveman style by first just clearing the c6 square by 20…nxe5 and then bishop to c6  ( something like 20…nxe5, 21. fxe5, bc6 22.nf6+, rxf6 23. rg1, rg6 24. qxd8, rxd8 with a big plus  or would you simply play 20…ncd4 first then after 21. nf6+, rxn.  22.pxr, bc6, threatening  both rooks as well as …nf3+ .  See how I played it below.

Diagram 1:







Diagram 2:

In the diagram below from round 5 I’m black again and white plays 23. nxf5!.  I immediately played and goofed I might add with 23…pxn.  (23…qb8 is better and the game is about equal).  How would you send black on a trip down misery lane?  Be careful!


  • 6 years ago



    I think it has more to do with the depth with which they play the openings b4 getting off line. This ensures some interesting looks. Then after that the masters don't straight up blunder like you and me. Instead they make minor inaccuracies until their opponent destroys them (or wins a quiet endgame)

  • 6 years ago


    Can anyone tell me why the games of strong players look unique

    compared to casual players?  Is it because their different moves at openings?

    Many casual players play whole games correctly and again their positions look usual.

  • 6 years ago

    NM SHoshall

    defrancis.  thx for the comment.  I Think you meant 2. qg3+ by white after 1...gxf5, and that does look interesting however after 2...Kh8, 3. bxf5, black has 3...qf6! as the saving resource with a decent advantage.  The white bishop is pinned if white for example tried to win the black knight with 4. bxd7  because black has 4...qxr+, 5. rxq, and 5...rxr mate!  Lots of tactics in this position.

    2. =/+  (-0.68): 24.Qg3+ Kh8[] 25.Bxf5 Qf6 26.Bg5[] Qxf5[] 27.Rxf5 Rxf5[] 28.h4 Bc6 29.Qc7 Ne5 30.Bf4 Ng4 31.Qxc6 Raf8 32.Rf1 Rxf4[] 33.Rxf4 Rxf4 34.g3 Rf8 35.h5 Nf6 36.h6 Rf7 37.Qe6 Kg8 38.Qc8+ 









  • 6 years ago


    My own question concerns what happens in the second game (Nolan)  after 1. ... gxh5, should White play 2. Qc3+?  (If black plays any blocking move, Qg5 (BQ captured by either WB or WQ and BK still in check), or Rg7, (2 ... Rg7  3.Qxg7#) that piece will be lost.  On c3, the WQ can not be taken by Black.)  If 2. ... Kh8, 3. Bxf5, threating the BQ with WR on d1 (protected by the other WR on f1.


  • 6 years ago

    NM SHoshall

    Steiner...  I agree it doesn't need to be puzzle mode but what I wanted to do was hide the move list at least for the first move so wasn't sure how to do that other than puzzle mode.

    Wishbringer... yes i think it was greg nolan from PA.  Funny guy, nice person we went over the game afterwards.  Both these guys were good people as well as good players.

  • 6 years ago


    Well rony1990, pxn is more commonly seen in descriptive notation, a much older form of notation, which was used even during the 70s.  It is not as simple as algebraic(modern) notation, and so, you don't see many people who know this anymore, even though it is a very valuable piece of knowledge because many older books are very useful and most haven't been translated to algebraic.

  • 6 years ago


    23…pxn. ? What language?

  • 6 years ago


    If your opponent in Game 2 was Greg Nolan (PA), you beat a former master and an excellent player.

  • 6 years ago


  • 6 years ago


    Interesting positions but shouldn't you disable the "puzzle" mode when the moves are sub-optimal?

  • 6 years ago

    NM SHoshall

    Thanks AdamP  excellent comments.    In regards to Black holding the endgame 2 pawns down.  I initially thought I would have a chance to hold that too because of white's awful pawn structure but after white plays the correct bxq ( Instead of qe5+), then black plays rxq the logical looking Kg7 seems to lose outright therefore Black is forced to play bf8 where he gets bottled up down in the 7th , 8th rank.  White can post that black bishop on d4  and has all the activity and fun Plus 2 extra pawns.  Rybka analysis below:

    Analysis by Rybka 3 Human 1-cpu 32-bit .bit:

    1. +-  (1.67): 27...Bf8 28.Be5+ Bg7[] 29.Bd4 Rg8 30.Rf2 Ba6 31.Bb5 Bxd4 32.cxd4 Bxb5 33.cxb5 Kg7 34.Kg1 Kg6 

     2. +-  (3.29): 27...Kg7 28.Be5+ Kh6 29.Rf6+ Kg5[] 30.h4+ Kxh4[] 31.Bf4 Bxg2+ 32.Kxg2 Rg8+ 33.Kf3 h5 34.a4 Rg1 35.Ke4 Rg2 36.Rh6 Bf8 

    In the first position  your c3 was what white actually played in the game.  But after Re8+ black is at least equal after kd1 and Bf3+

     1. =  (0.00): 26. c3, Re8+ 27.Kd1 Bf3+ 28.Kc1 Rc8 29.Qxa6 Nb3+ 30.Kb2 Rb8 


    and after the game continuation ( this was not shown):  kf1?!  black is actually a little better if correct play:

     Analysis by Rybka 3 Human 1-cpu 32-bit .bit:

    1. =/+  (-0.33):  26. c3, Re8+ 27.Kf1?! Bc6 28.Kg1 Bb5 29.Qh3 Ne2+ 30.Kf2 Ke6 31.a4 Bc4[] 32.Qf3 Rc8 33.Qb7 Nd6 34.Qe7+ Kd5 35.Qd7 Rh8 36.Kg2 


    In the last Chess life magazine.  Karpov is interviewed and he's asked how to handle a big change in circumstances after you make a mistake and the game goes from an advantage for you to equal or even an advantage for your opponent.  He says he doesn't let his past mistakes effect him and just goes on playing the current position.  He also says that this is very hard to do and the vast majority of players can not do this.  I think me losing this game was somewhat related to my inability to deal with a change of circumstances.  After missing the mate and losing the advantage i was just mad at myself for screwing up and figured i was losing.  ...But in the position black still has 3 minor pieces for the queen and the rook for the bishop.  white has a lot more pawns of course to go along with the queen.  It's one of those nightmare positions for both sides really.



  • 6 years ago

    NM SHoshall

    bgiovasurf, Thanks for the comment.   Your right, bxr+ is better than the continuation of the actual game but it just goes into a clear cut loss for white down a piece.  The endgame is hopeless for white at that point.  bg5 was an attempt to mix it up for hopeful complications and I can't blame white for trying.  i only included that because it was the actual game continuation.  the main point of the diagram was white should not have played Qe5+?  which looked totally crushing if black played ...kg8?  but rg7! saved black because of the mate on g2.  White needed to play bxq instead of qe5+

  • 6 years ago


    in the last puzzle why not BxR check?

Back to Top

Post your reply: