Atlantic Open: Day 1

Aug 29, 2015, 6:12 PM |

Hi everyone, I just finished the first day of the Atlantic Open. After taking a break from tournament chess after the World Open in early July, I made my return in the U1900 section. I was feeling pretty relaxed heading into Round 1, which was strange as I usually get pre-tournament jitters. I was scared that I would be rusty after my tournament break, but I was happy with how I played today. Enjoy the games!

*I'll be annotating these games over this next week, but feel free to ask questions about my games.*

Round 1: G60, d10

In round 1 I was paired White against Dennis Burke, a solid player with a rating around 1800. I had played him twice before with White and had lost embarrassingly both times. With that in mind, I quickly pulled out my phone and did some pregame opening prep. I still don't think I played the opening perfectly, but I was able to build up an attack and I won in mutual time trouble. Here is the game:

Game summary: I'm sure I could have played more accurately in the early middlegame and I'm frustrated that I hung a piece on move 23, but I think besides that it was a pretty strong game for me. Any thoughts I had of being rusty after not playing tournament chess for a month stopped after this game.

Round 2: G60, d10

In Round 2 I was paired with Bradley Guo, another person I had played several times before. I think he messed up his opening as I saw him grimace after he touched his knight on move 2, but we both got decent positions coming out of the opening. He started playing very passively, and I was able to create a destructive passed pawn. Here is the game:

Game Summary: I think I gave White the opportunity to get active in the middlegame, but I was happy with how I played for most of the game and thrilled to start out the tournament 2-0.

Round 3: 40/110 + SD30, d10

In round 3 I was paired with Stephanie Ballom, an 1880 from New York. We played the first ten moves of the games really quickly, and being in a "blitz" mentality I proceeded to hang a piece (!) a few moves later. I got a bit of counterplay and I was pretty sure I could get my piece back but she played a tactical blow that left me helpless. Here is the ugly game:

Game summary: Not really much to say about this game except for a complete lack of focus for the first 16 moves. Not only did I overlook Black's move 15...f4 but I also opted not to play the only non-losing move 16. c4 due to my incorrect belief that 16. Bxf4 would be fine. Hopefully I can turn this poor play around tomorrow.


I finished the day with 2/3 points, which probably keeps me in contention for a prize. Stay tuned for my blog of tomorrow's games!