Sign of the Times

Dec 7, 2009, 3:02 PM |

In the excellent LA Times chess column of Nov 6, IM Jack Peters reports: "The 45th annual American Open ended in a three-way tie last Sunday at the Renaissance Hotel in Los Angeles. Two favorites, GM Melikset Khachiyan and IM Andranik Matikozyan, shared first place with 20-year-old Julian Landaw. All scored 6-2 in the 36-player Open section...
Landaw, a master since 2006, achieved the greatest success yet in his chess career. He had to take a last-round bye that evening to return to college at UC Berkeley."
One cannot help but wonder what would have happened if he had played that last round game...Earning a half-point by withdrawing early would seem to cast a cloud on "the greatest success yet in his chess career."
IM Peters goes on to report: "Organizer Randy Hough described the turnout of 197 players as "rather disappointing." The tournament was one of the country's largest in the 1980s, consistently attracting over 400 entrants.
On the other hand, attendance boomed to 144 players in the American Open Scholastic."
A sign of the times...