Birmingham Rapidplay Tourny.

Birmingham Rapidplay Tourny.

Oct 12, 2009, 5:08 PM |

Hi all, I would like to share with you the great day i had yesterday Sunday 11th Oct.

I travelled 70 miles on my motorbike to play in the Birmingham Rapidplay Tournament.

The Tournament consisted of 6 games at 30 minutes each on the clock in one day.

The Tournament was split into rated sections based on each players ECF rating (English Chess Federation). The sections were : a Minor for players rated 125 and under (1650 fide), an Intermediate for players rated 150 and under (1850 fide), a Major for players rated 175 and under (2050 fide), and an Open section for players rated over 175.

As my rating is 176, i had no choice but to play in the Open section, and i must admit that i was more than a little nervous of who i would have to face. Things didnt improve much either, when i checked the entry list for the Open section.

Only 19 players had entered and the top 5 seeds were as follows.

  1. GM Matthew Turner , rated 2508 on the current FIDE list (ECF rating 238)
  2. Ameet Ghasi , untitled but a well known giant killer in the UK, having taken many titled scalps in Tournaments. Rated 2359 FIDE (ECF rating 235)
  3. IM Laurence Cooper, rated 2316 FIDE(ECF rating 218)
  4. D.Mason, rated 2255 FIDE (ECF rating 203)
  5. M.Surtees, rated 2135 FIDE (ECF rating 201)

I wasnt bottom seed, as 3 lower rated players had entered the Open, even though they could have played in one of the lower rated sections. Still, that left me 15th seed from 19 players, and it was with a lump in my throat that i approached the boards for the first round draw.

RD 1: White against I.M. Laurence Cooper (2316)

My first game against a titled player in real competition! Would i lose my bottle and fold quickly? What would i play as white? My usual is the Kings Gambit after a black e5, but in the Kings Gambit you can get squashed really quickly if you make a slip, i really didnt know whether to play it safe with an Opening i didnt usually play, or just give it my best shot with what i know best. Here is the game in full.

Laurence said after the game that i had given him a real fight and I was pleased with my play in general.

Tourney score : 0/1

RD 2: as there were an odd number of players in the Open (19) somebody on zero had to get the full point Bye. Unfortunately that was me....

Tourney score: 1/2

RD 3 : Black against D.Mason (2255)

I was beginning to wonder if the guy doing the pairings had a grudge against me. After losing to the no.3 seed i now have to play Black against the no.4 seed!

Here is the game in full.....

The game was drawn on the offer of my opponent, i knew when he offered me a draw here, that there was a win for me in the final position. I just couldnt find it! We were both down to a couple of minutes each left on the clock, and as a tried to find the win the ticking seemed to get louder and louder. I accepted the draw, and immediatley my opponent informed me of the win. 24...c4! just caves white in. Oh well, its sort of a nice feeling when a 2200+ player considers himself lucky to get away with a draw :-)
Discussing the game afterwards, Mr Mason said he was very impressed with my moves 13....Qa5, and 18...g5. Qa5 posed him real problems , and g5 is a really hard move to find as it puts a pawn en-prise which can be taken by check! but actually, what it does for me is opens up the g-file, enabling me to put a rook on g8 and attack.

Tourney score : 1.5 / 3

RD 4: Black against M.Surtees (2135)
LOL, i really did feel like i was being victimised by now, i have now to play top 5 seed no.3!
A wild game, but a badly played one on my behalf.
Here is the game in full :)

We had a very interested chat after the game, where Mr Surtees showed me the game where he won 'game of the day' at last years British Championship, beating a WGM in 23 moves!

Tourney score 1.5\4

RD 5: White against M.Uddin (1641)
At last i get a player rated lower than myself! I managed to win quickly :-)
Here is the game in full....

Tourney score : 2.5/ 5

RD 6: Black against P.Davies (1963)
A very tired draw quickly agreed, 6 games in a day is a lot OTB!
Here is the boring game in full :)

Final Tourney score: 3\6  for 50% and a Performance rating of 2053, which just so happens to be my rating, so all in all i was happy with my chess, and i look forward to my next one!

G.M. Turner won the Open on 5.5/ 6.

Any critic of my play welcome (constructive ofcourse) and please remember this is 30/0 chess, not 40 moves in 2 hrs, so lots of time trouble involved!

Hope you enjoyed the read, i will add some proper analysis at some point.