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