Saturday, February 6, 2010

Bermuda: Lunch & 1st Round

A lovely Friday in Bermuda. This is the view from Nigel's house where we had a wonderful lunch of roast lamb, potatoes, veggies, and rum swizzles. Many players come over for lunch. Lunch is early enough and the round late enough that the wine and rum has safely been processed. The round doesn't start until 8:00 pm which can be tough for those who have long games.

Nigel Freeman: host and organizer extraordinaire!

Larry Ebbin: The Swizzle King!
Michael Khodarkovsky
GM Pascal Charbonneau and his sister Anne Marie
Polly checking out the rum swizzle.
Natasha Christiansen checking out the fish chowder.
Lunch in Nigel's backyard. I was probably the lowest rated one there.

The first round is at 8:00 pm. Carol Jarecki, the arbiter started off by explaining the differences between FIDE rules and USCF rules which all us Americans needed. Little differences such as one must castle moving the king first. That used to be a USCF rule, but it got changed a number of years ago. Cell phone rules are rather harsh. Your phone makes a noise and you lose. No 10 minute penalty, just instant forfeit. Arbiter can call flags. A few other differences which I don't remember off the top of my head.

Jorge Vega Nigel Freeman Carol Jarecki

Polly gets Black against WIM Ester Epstein (Mrs. Alexander Ivanov)

Pascal Charbonneau versus Nigel Freeman
White has the white wine and Black has the red wine

The tournament has a wide range of ratings and experience. We have GMs Christiansen, de Firmian, Ivanov and Charbonneau, IM David Cummings, FMs Adnan Kobas and Joel Salman and CMs Nick Faulks and Aleksandr Ostrovskiy as the titled players at the tournament. Then there are some young Bermudian kids playing in their first tournament. They got the crash course on notation earlier this week.

In the first round there were no upsets. The top half won every game against the lower half. Sad to say I could not boast of being the lone upset of the first round. With an 8:00 pm start time the last games were finishing at 2:00 am. I was not one of those games! Ester put me out of my misery in about two hours. I wasn't the first one done. One of the new kids lost in about 8 moves. One of my former students who I used to have nag about playing too fast went 5.5 hours. It's amazing what happens when they grow up and they improve over the board.

A player sitting next to me asked me if I was Polly. He introduced himself and said he was a new fan of my blog which he came across Googling for information on the Bermuda Open. Hello Charles if you're reading! I thought that was rather cool. Charles game was one the last ones done. Nice hanging tough against your higher rated opponent.

Here's my rather ugly start to the tournament. Very light annotations.


More reports to follow including my six hour win in the second two. More pictues on Facebook.


LinuxGuy said...

That looks like the tournament to be at. You get to mingle with the stars, so who cares about the results (but I still like looking at your games) ;-)

Lately, I cannot play chess even the next day, if I have so much as one drink the night before. Perhaps the 7,000 ft. altitude here has something to do with that. Looks like people were having fun, though!

Polly said...

This is one tournament where the party is as important as the play.

Carlo said...

Nice pictures! I certainly have appreciated your blogging from both this time at the Bermuda Open and the last. My game was in fact the last to finish in the first round, at somewhere past 1AM, which of course pleased Carol the TD to no end.

I'm partly visible as the guy in the gray shirt next to Polly in her first round game, nice to be famous. :)



chesstiger said...

You definetly got outplayed by your opponent. I guess the ratingdifference was to big here.

Polly said...

Tiger: She's not as active as she used to be. I played her probably 20 years ago in the New England Woman's Championship and she smacked me around back then too.

When one plays somebody that strong, one little mistake can give them way too much to work with.