Fighting Chess: Macedonian Labour Day Open 2009
Its been awhile since I posted, but I've been busy with that real life thing.
Recently I had the opportunity to play in Toronto's Annual Labour Day Open, a big and well run tournament directed by NM Bryan Lamb. The tournament was filled with some terrific fighting chess this year. At one point it looked like Richard Cote of Sudbury was going to run away with first place in the U1600 section with his firey start of 3/3! Then things got even more firey, and Richard lost his last three to break even!
Bruce highcock of Sudbury put up some good fighting chess in a few games and also managed an even score, while Derrick Fleming managed just 2.0/5 rounds before withdrawing when he was certain there was no chance for prize money.
Of special mention is Sudbury's Matthew Nicholson (Ih8sens) who scored an undefeated 4.0 in 6 rounds, finishing just out of the prize money. Matthew played very solid chess and promises to be a player to watch. Just dont watch him when he's busy busting out 4 draws! Just kidding, some of these were against strong players - so well done Matt!
My own score was mediocre for the section I was in at 2.5/6 rounds in the Open, which breaks down to the following:
Whissell (2160) - Sapsoshnikov (2390) 0-1
Henry (2275) - Whissell (2160) 1/2-1/2
Whissell (2160) - Marinkovic (2110) 0-1
Kleinman (2112) - Whissell (2160) 0-1
Sundar (2246) - Whissell (2160) 0-1
Whissell (2160) - Peng (2310) 0-1
If you've notice that black ran away in each of my games, then bully for you! I can say that I did have an advantage against Marinkovic, but was outplayed and eventually foolishly traded into a dead lost ending. Remind me to calculate before I'm losing! That game may be posted at a later date for interested readers.
For now, I present the following games with extensive annotations:
First, a powerful display as black's knights find perfect outposts and make white's bishops look lackluster.
Next, who says the Dragon is dead?? Not David Peng, who used an unorthodox line to crush me quickly with some really lovely positional and finally tactical play. I look forward to my next game with this innovative mind!
Finally, a slow positional battle in the Lopez Exchange Deferred shows that white is used to his opponents not knowing how to play such positions. In this instance, however, Black is geared up for such a battle. Black patiently waits and builds his position as white flounders in the middlegame. Finally a few inaccuracies added with severe time-pressure see white bite the bullet in a hurry!