Sunday, July 12, 2009

Kansas Open - Day 1

The Kansas Open was being held at Bethany College. I had mailed my entry in back in June. I had received the following email from the organizer.

Dear Polly,

I received you entry fee today. Everything looks in order. It is a long way to go from NY to Kansas. You wouldn't be trying to play in a chess tourney in all fifty states, would you?

Laurence Coker

Is that obvious that I'm trying to play in all fifty states? Though I did want to get out and visit my sister in Kansas since it has been four years since I've been out there. I just happened to have found a chess tournament to attend while visiting.

When I mailed my entry in, I signed up for the Under 1800 section. I looked at last year's results and noticed there were a lot of really low rated players, and wasn't sure if I really wanted to be sitting on one of the top boards with a bulls eye on my forehead. I don't mind playing in an Under 1800 section when there's another section below it. As I found out in Las Vegas, playing in one's own section is very challenging when there are sections below. There are no easy games.

When I got here and looked at the two sections I told the tournament director if he had an odd number in the Open Section to go ahead and switch me there to make it even. I wasn't even going to be the lowest rated player. There were three teen aged kids rated in the 1600s who opted to play up. As it turned out there was an odd number so I switched sections. I was glad I switched sections, because in the first round there were 6 upsets on the top 10 boards in the Under 1800. I would have played a young kid rated around 1350 who did beat his higher rated opponent in round one. I play enough really under rated kids in New York. I don't need to travel half way across the country to play more of them.

In the first round I played David Blair again. He was the one who crushed me in the second round of the quick tournament. Hopefully having more time on my clock, and perhaps learning from the previous day's mistakes I could maybe get my revenge. Unfortunately the result was the same. I put up a little more resistance, but it still was painfully short. That game can be seen here.

In the second round I played Ron Pasik. The name didn't really ring a bell with me when we sat down and played. We had a tough game, that ended out in a draw. I offered the draw in this position after 45. Kc4. I may be slightly better with the passed pawn, but I just couldn't see a safe way to penetrate. It just seemed like one of those positions that if either player tries to win, he/she will lose.

Afterward we got talking and he asked me if I had played in tournaments in Leominster, Massachusetts. I said yes, way back in the early 70s. He remembered me from those tournaments. He moved out to Seattle in 1980, and then to Kansas in the 90s. Even though my last name was different, how many chess players out there are named Polly? He's about 4 years younger then me, so he would have been an even younger kid then me back then. I'll have to go through my old score books and see if we actually played. It's not something I'll be able to find on the USCF website since the rating history only goes back to 1991.

In the third round I played Ken Fee again. He was my 4th round opponent in the quick tournament. It's funny how I not only was playing my second player from the other event, but again I had Black. Why couldn't I play the guy I beat playing with White? I guess I made Ken nervous from the close call in the quick event, because he played 1. e4 instead of 1. d4.

It was a very interesting game. I was glad for the long time control because I had time to think things out. Unfortunately after spending 15 minutes on one move and another 25 minutes on another move, I left myself short on time. I was also totally fried after all of that analysis. I ended out making a terrible mistake because I reached a point where I couldn't sort out the lines anymore. I had reached the "screw it" stage where I didn't feel like it made a difference which move I made. It did make a difference.



linuxguy said...

The ...f6, okay you were probably seeing ghosts with either an f6 fork push or f6 pawn clearance sac. Anyway, we are down a pawn. Then you spent the dreaded 40 minutes of time and energy.

I've been to the "screw it" stage, usually after I have been at the board for 4 hours and my opponent is still analyzing all chipper and fresh as a daisy. That's where I want to take my brain out of my head, shake it up to circulate the blood, and look at my opponent cross-eyed (if I could).

You simply have to play confidently at that point. oops, there is a Re8+, okay, well, Kf7 is going to be your escape square. Where to put the rook? Fine, g7 it is. Blundercheck, he can trade rooks with Re8+, then Re7+ KxR QxR+, but that is all the position is offering you anyhow.

Good luck on your next rounds! :-)

Polly said...

Sometimes I just want to kick myself for not playing the move that creates a threat. Rg7 is threatening mate on g2. It's funny Fritz doesn't even consider your line after Rg7. It has white playing Qh3.

Ultimately the game is probably going to come down to and ending with me still down a pawn with either rooks and/or the queens off the board.

chesstiger said...

Indeed that Rf8 move is a horrible blunder that did cost you the game. On f8 the rook only has a defensive role, on g7 its has a defensive and attacking role so its better then on f8. With other words you just had to calculate if you could get out of threat of checkmate if you play Rg7.

Kansas City Chess Club said...

Hi Polly,

Yes after almost getting crushed by you in the Friday Night Quick and losing the first round of the Kansas Open, I did decide to change things up with e4 which I have played for 20 years or so.

I just found this blog in January 2010.

Pretty Cool.

Ken Fee Kansas City Chess Club