Rosen, Shahade Reach IM Not A GM Speed Chess Championship Quarterfinals

Rosen, Shahade Reach IM Not A GM Speed Chess Championship Quarterfinals

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IM Greg Shahade and IM Eric Rosen qualified for the quarterfinals of the IM Not A GM Speed Chess Championship‎ after beating IM Anna Zatonskih and IM Elisabeth Paehtz, respectively. Three more matches in the round of 16 will follow on Friday and Saturday on

It seems that a pattern is emerging in the IM Not A GM Speed Chess Championship‎ so far: experience in online chess is a big, big advantage. Shahade and Rosen are more active on than their female counterparts, and that might have been one reason for their big victories.

Shahade and Zatonskih tied 3.5-3.5 in the five-minute portion, but in the faster time control, it was Shahade who took the upper hand: 4.5-2.5 in the three-minute and 6-3 in the bullet. The final score was 14-9. 

We're starting with a win for Zatonskih, though, chosen as the Game of the Match by commentator GM Robert Hess for Black's splendid endgame technique in one of those endgames where the knight is actually stronger than the bishop:

Shahade, about a good phase for Zatonskih early in the match: "She outclassed me technically in all those games, it felt like. I was kind of scared that it was gonna be a blow-out."

But in most games after that, Shahade was the faster and slightly more practical player. Here's one of the craziest moments of the match, where Zatonskih misses a mate in one:

"I think my mistake was I didn't prepare some more espresso shots before the one-minute part!" quipped Zatonskih, who remained in good spirits after her loss.

Shahade won $150 outright and $91.30 based on win percentage, so $241.30 in total. Zatonskih won $85.70 on percentage.

The next opponent for Shahade is the winner between IM Carissa Yip and IM Dean Ippolito, a match that will be played on Saturday, April 25 on

All games of the match

Rosen beat Paehtz 5.5-2.5 in the five-minute portion, 6-2 in the three-minute, and again 5.5-2.5 in the bullet to reach a total score of 17-7. Here, the difference in practice was even starker and early mishaps by Paehtz set the tone.

After both had won one game in the five-minute segment, this happened:

"To be honest, when I am playing blitz and I am a queen down I am always resigning," said Paehtz. "I was so irritated that my opponent didn't resign; I am not used to playing online chess. I think I was so much irritated that I just blundered, in a way. Probably in online play you should play until the end, that's what I learned in this match."

Rosen: "Of course there are situations where resigning is acceptable but, growing up, my coach had a rule for me: never resign. It's amazing how many games can be saved when the opponent thinks it should just be over. All it takes is one careless mistake."

But then, this happened in game eight:

Paehtz: "That was the final cut, when I actually lost the match. The stalemate was still OK but after this it was over for me psychologically."

Rosen won $150 outright, and $106.25 based on win percentage, so $256.25 in total. Paehtz won $43.75 on percentage. The next opponent for Rosen is Alina Kashlinskaya, who defeated Christof Sielecki.

All games of the match

The inaugural IM Not A GM Speed Chess Championship exclusively features international masters in an effort to bring entertainment to the audience. All matches are broadcast live with commentary and occasional roasting from GMs Vidit Gujrathi, Robert Hess and Daniel Naroditsky on and 

Matches feature 75 minutes of 5+1 blitz, 45 minutes of 3+1 blitz, and 25 minutes of 1+1 bullet chess. The total prize fund is $6,000.

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