Saturday, July 18, 2009

Kansas Open - Day 2

If this seems to be kind of late, you're right. Sometimes one needs a vacation from her vacation. It took me awhile to get back into a New York state of mind, and blogging got pushed down to the bottom of the to do list.

So where did I leave off? Oh yes. Losing round three in an exciting game. After the game was done I hung around watching the other games finish up. Then I was looking to find some real food, since for the most part I had been just snacking on fruit and energy bars. One of the tournament directors and I went on a food finding mission, that failed miserably. What is it about bars that stop serving food after 11:00 pm in a town where nothing else is open?

Having failed miserably we returned to the dorm, and before going to bed Tony and I played a little more bughouse. Only in bughouse can you get a mate like the one pictured below. I don't know what other pieces were on the board for either side, but only the knights and White's king and pawns matter.

The move sequence was ....Nc2+, Kf1, Nd2+, Kg1, Ne2#. I love knights!

The following morning I got up, determined to find real food for breakfast. When I had been walking around town on Friday I recalled seeing a Swedish pastry and pancake place on Main St. I figured I would go for some of the local cuisine. The pancake place wasn't open, but around the corner is the Swedish Country Inn, a cute little hotel. They serve a nice buffet breakfast with Swedish meatballs, pickled herring (I passed on that one!), Swedish tea ring, rye bread, various meats and cheeses, and waffles. I can't say I've ever had Swedish meatballs for breakfast before, but they were tasty. After breakfast I asked the waitress how much I owed. She said that they would take care of that at the front desk. Imagine that in most places? Not going to happen. I was expecting to pay around $10.00 to $12.oo for breakfast. It cost $6.95 including tax.

Swedish Country Inn - Breakfast of Champions!

After a lovely breakfast it was time to play chess. I got paired against one of the teenaged 1600s who decided to play up. Nice kid for the most part, but he couldn't sit still. Almost after every move he'd get up and go look at the game on board one. After I would move he would come back to the board, make another move and leave again. In the past I would get annoyed when an opponent did that. I would feel as if my opponent wasn't taking me or the game seriously. However I've had my moments when I can't stay focused on my own game, and take to wandering around the playing hall looking at other games.

The only time I got annoyed with his wandering was when he came back to the board, not having seen that I had moved, and starting accusing me of recording my move on my Mon Roi before making the move on the board. I'm saying "What are you talking about? I made my move on the board first." He's insisting that I recorded first. Fortunately a player who was looking at our game saw that I had moved first, and told my opponent this. It was then that my opponent noticed I had moved and his clock was running. It's a little annoying to be accused of something when the one making the accusation isn't even at the board to see what I did or did not do.

That was about all the excitement the game had. He played the Maroczy Bind against my Accelerated Dragon. He had a lot of pressure, but I was able to make some trades. After my 21st move he offered me a draw. I happily accepted since my position was still a little cramped.


It also gave me a lot of time to wander around town some more, and have another good meal. Lindsborg is a charming little town, and quite different from many of the places that I've gone to play chess. Most of the out of town tournaments I've played in recently have been in large hotels in the middle of nowhere, or at an airport. After awhile one hotel looks like another, and there isn't much to look at outside the hotel. As I mentioned in an earlier post, all over town are hand carved dala horses, painted in different designs. Some of the designs and names were quite clever, so I decided to walk around town and take pictures of some the ones I liked in particular.

Hello Dala!

The one I'm standing in front of is painted in the traditional Swedish motif. Since they are hand carved and painted they are expensive. Even the smallest ones were not cheap.

I found another buffet for lunch. I love how they put it on the board outside the restaurant. "All you care to eat." Maybe that's a nice Midwestern or Swedish way to say, "Don't eat like a pig!"

I didn't want to eat like a pig since, I hate feeling really full when I'm playing chess. There's nothing like feeling totally stuffed, and trying to stay awake enough to play a half way intelligent game of chess. I figured I was going to pay another one of the teenagers, so I wanted to have a clear head and not be falling asleep at the table.

Sure enough I played the other 1600 in the section. We traded down to bishops of the same color and 5 pawns each. I offered a draw which he promptly turned down. My queen side pawns were connected, and his were split. However his king was a lot more active. He did win my a pawn, but he had the wrong color bishop to convert the pawn advantage. Since he had been so emphatic about refusing my draw offer, I figured I wouldn't offer another one. I'd either wait him out with the 50 move rule, three fold repetition, or let him offer the draw back. When he did conclude that it was a draw, it wasn't exactly a draw offer. It was more a begrudging realization that I was not going to screw up and give him control of the crucial a2-g8 diagonal, or move my king off c3.


Even though I didn't win any games, I was satisfied with my result. My non-losses outnumbered my actual losses. The first round game was ugly, but I felt I rebounded nicely from that game. Seeing how the Under 1800 section went, I was glad I played up. Colby Stuckman, rated 1349 at the start of the tournament went 5-0 in the section. I probably would have played him in the first round. Needless to say he's no longer in the 1300s. His rating shot up to 1634. Almost 300 point gain! Congratulations Colby.

Under 1800 Champion: Colby Stuckman

Kansas State Champion: Tom Brownscombe
Executive Director Karpov Chess School

Laurence Coker and Tony Dutiel
Organizer, Tournament Director.

A very nicely run tournament. Thanks for a well organized event.


linuxguy said...

Game 1, I would be playing Nd7 then f5; working for the b5 break also looks like another good plan. I can't see allowing the draw to 1600 level player, but instead play active enough to win. He took a long time to castle too, which only gives me ideas.

Game 2, It was a draw because he carelessly let his pawn get stuck on f5, a white square, otherwise looks winning for him.

Earlier, he allowed you to get in Ne5 with f4 right behind it, which I would think should be golden opportunity for you. It's eye-opening that your pieces were so far pushed back that you couldn't take on h6 safely (I suppose you can't sac the knnight).

I think you are mostly getting by on their lack of endgame experience, which may work at that level, but I can't imagine the typical 1900 level player getting the trades and pawn and king moves wrong in the endgame.

I would be walking around town, too. That seemed like a very interesting place!

linuxguy said...

Polly, that was actually a well-played draw on your part in game 1, and game 2 was great how you bailed on the middle-game once he escaped, and you saw that your queen on c2 was doing you no favors.

I figured you would draw after you locked in his pawn on f5, but it was neat how you did it by trapping his king. :-)

Polly said...

Linux: I could have played on in that first game, but the position is really locked up. Even if i put the knight on e5 which looks like a terrific outpost square, where is it going from there? What are the threats to White's position? There aren't really any useful pawn pushes. Pushing pawns on either side will just create weaknesses in the pawn chain. I think both sides will simply fiddle around with their minor pieces.

In the second game I felt he should have played 40...g4 and not allowed me to trade off so easily. I have to be very careful how I proceed from there. Bishop moves to waste time don't work the same way with all pawns still on the king side. My best try after 40...g4 is 41. f3.

It may still end out being a draw, but there are a lot more possibilities for White to go wrong.

linuxguy said...

I think you mean 40...f4.

"I think both sides will simply fiddle around with their minor pieces."

I agree.

"It may still end out being a draw, but there are a lot more possibilities for White to go wrong."

I think that's mainly because you lost about 3 tempos there starting with Bb5, which surprised me to see since trading rooks seems indicated (IOW, the game seemed more like draw-mode rather than create more middlegame complications). Anyhow, it loses a tempo as does moving the rook twice, and then he is finally able to recapture the rook with his king which is the third tempo.

He should play 40...f4, not g4, IMHO, and then I think he has a win if he leaves his pawn on a7 as he can capture the a-pawn and then simply outrun your king all the way up to b7.

You played to save that endgame very well.

linuxguyonfics said...

I forgot to erase that first comment about f4.

Yes, I think you are right! 40...g4 looks winning if his pawn were on a5 already (at first I though his pawn was already advanced to a5), because your bishop does not have as much room to maneuver out and and get that same diagonal. With the pawn on a7 still, it probably wins anyway by just leaving the pawn on a7 so that the king won't get trapped.

Blue Devil Knight said...

Great stuff, and pics thanks.

In the summer do tournaments become overrun with scholastic players?

Polly said...

BDK: Regarding scholastic players, I think weekend tournaments the attendance may be pretty consistent with how it is during the school year. In some cases i may be lower because kids have gone to camp for the summer.

My club that meets on Monday evenings get a few more kids during the summer then during the school year. Though I do have some kids who attend all year around.

Not knowing what the Kansas scholastic scene is like, I can't say if this tournament had more or less kids then normal in it. It certainly had less kids then I see at a typical NYC tournament.


I randomly stumbled onto this blog and discovered that you had written about my game, so I would like to give my analysis on it:

40...g4 would have been a bad idea imo because after 41. f3 black either messes up his kingside pawn structure by taking, which would be undesirable due to the king positions, or has to push h5 to defend when after f4 the pawns can be attacked by white's bishop and the only square to defend them both from, g6, is very undesirable.

The central mistake for black was 37...c4????? which completely threw away the win. The correct move was BxB when after KxB black 1: Moves his king over to b3 as white goes to b1 2: Takes away all white's queenside tempos. 3: Trades the c-pawn for the b-pawn. 4: Outflanks white's king to win the a-pawn. 5: Sacrifices the a-pawn to run over to the queenside and win the other pawns. The main thing I missed in my plan was that after the pawn trades your bishop could gain control of the a2-g8 diagonal via the h-file. Thus I think 42...g4 may have saved the win but I have not explored that possibility since I am now looking at my games from Chicago Class.

Andrew Latham


Also, @linuxguy, after 14...Rac8, 15. f4 is not good because after cxd4, recapturing with the c-pawn loses a knight while recapturing with the e-pawn loses the d-pawn to the c-file pin. The only option is to give up the well placed knight and leave the e4 square weakened.

The number of scholastic players was about what you would expect. The reserve had a lot more players, Chris Purdy and Conrad Holt are the only 1800+ scholastic players in KS.

Polly said...

Andrew thank you for your insights into the position. I agree that you should have exchanged bishops when given the chance. When I was looking at that line, I was wondering what in earth I was thinking about when I even allowed you the opportunity to trade. Fortunately you didn't, so I got another chance to get the bishop away.

I guess you were thinking that if I play Bxd3, you can recapture cxd3 or Kxd3, Eventually I'm going to run out of space and moves.

In the line we played I was depending on keeping your king trapped on a3 after winning the pawn.

Based on Linux guys comments I did a little more analyzing using Fritz. Fritz still seemed to like the king side pushes as opposed to the trades.

Here is the extra analysis.

1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3 e6 3. Bg5 b6 4. e3 Bb7 5. Bd3 Be7 6. Nbd2 O-O 7. O-O d5 8. c3 h6 9. Bh4 c5 10. Rc1 Nc6 11. Bb1 Nd7 12. Bxe7 Qxe7 13. Qc2 Nf6 14. Ne5 Rac8 15.Ng4 g6 16. Nxf6+ Qxf6 17. Qd1 Rfd8 18. Qf3 Qxf3 19. Nxf3 Rc7 20. Bd3 Re8 21.
Rfe1 Rce7 22. dxc5 bxc5 23. e4 Kg7 24. Bb5 f5 25. exd5 exd5 26. Rxe7+ Rxe7 27.Rd1 Ne5 28. Nxe5 Rxe5 29. Kf1 g5 30. Rd2 Kf6 31. Re2 d4 32. Rxe5 Kxe5 33. cxd4+ Kxd4 34. Be2 Be4 35. g3 Bb1 36. a3 Bd3 37. Ke1 c4 (37... Bxe2 38. Kxe2 Kc4 39.
Kd2 Kb3 40. Kc1 g4 41. Kb1 c4) 38. Bd1 c3 39. bxc3+ Kxc3 40. h4 a5 (40... gxh4 41. gxh4 f4 42. Bf3 Bc4 43. Bc6 a5 44. Kd1) (40... g4 41. f3 (41. Ba4 Kb2 42.Kd2 Kxa3 43. Bd7 Be4 44. Kc3 Ka2 45. Be6+ Kb1 46. Bb3 Kc1 47. Ba4 a5 48. h5 Bd5
49. Bc2 Be6 50. Ba4 Bf7 51. Kd4 Kd2 52. Ke5 Bxh5 53. Kxf5 Ke2 54. Kf4 Kxf2 55. Bb5 Ke1 56. Ba4 Kd2 57. Bd7 Kc3 58. Ke4 Bg6+ 59. Kf4 h5 60. Kg5 Bf7 61. Bc6 Kb4 62. Kf6 Kc5 63. Bd7 h4) 41... gxf3 (41... h5 42. Ba4 Kb2 43. fxg4 fxg4 44. Be8
Kxa3 45. Bxh5 Bf5 46. Bf7 a5 47. h5 a4 48. Bg6 Be6 49. Kd2 Bg8 50. h6 Kb4 51.h7 Bxh7 52. Bxh7 Kc4 53. Bf5 Kd4 54. Bxg4 a3 55. Kc2 Ke3 56. Bf5 a2 57. Kb2a1=Q+ 58. Kxa1 Kd4 59. Kb2) 42. Bxf3 Kb3 43. Kd2 Bf1 44. Bd5+ Kxa3 45. Kc3 a5 46. Be6 Bh3 47. Bc4 Ka4 48. Ba6 Bg4 49. Bd3) 41. hxg5 hxg5 42. f4 gxf4 43. gxf4
Bc2 44. Bh5 a4 45. Bg6 Kb2 46. Kd2 Be4 47. Bf7 Kxa3 48. Kc3 Bb1 49. Be6 Be4 50.Bf7 Bf3 51. Be6 Bg4 52. Bf7 Bh3 53. Be6 1/2-1/2

It looked like you had a fairly decent result at Class. Hopefully you were satisfied with you play.

chesstiger said...

37. ... c4 seems to be the mistake indeed. Exchanging bishops there and running to b3 like suggested in another comment seems to be the line to play.