Shakmaty Bereolos - The Official Chess Site of Peter Bereolos

9/19/05 - Colias Memorial - Round 9

Between rounds the players were again treated to lunch, this time by TD Glenn Panner, who grilled hot dogs and hamburgers. Thanks Glenn! There was also an announcement by the organizers that one of the players wanted to address the other participants before the last round. This turned out to be Tim McEntee, who revealed himself as the anonymous sponsor of the tournament. He wanted to keep this secret until the end of the tournament so that players would not feel any pressure to play soft against him. All I can say is Bravo, Tim! Also, much kudos to Robert Loncarevic who announced that he would contribute prizes for Best Game and Best Endgame (I haven't heard what the winning games were).

In the final round, I had Black against Dr. Steven Tennant. I joked with the organizers before the round that I was surprised that his name plate read that way in the Colias Memorial because a famous quote from Billy was "He's not a doctor, he's a dentist!" 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 Nc6

I had prepared the Black Knight's Tango as a surprise weapon for this tournament, but elected not to use it in round 2 against McEntee since I had played a couple of games as White against Tim that began 1. d4 Nc6. However, Al Chow beat me to the punch using the Tango twice during the first weekend including his game against Tennant. At least that gave me some idea as to how Tennant would respond. 3. Nf3 e6 4. Nc3 Bb4 While I don't normally play the Nimzo-Indian, my move order has avoided Tennant's usual f3 lines. 5. Bg5 h6 6. Bh4 g5 Chow opted for a Queens Gambit setup with 6... d5 7. Bg3 Ne4 8. Qc2 This move is routine in the Nimzo/Queens Indian hybrid system where Black has played ...b6 instead of ...Nc6, but here Black can utilize the fact that the queen does not defend d4. 8... Nxg3 9. hxg3 g4 10. d5 gxf3 11. dxc6 fxe2 12. cxd7+ Bxd7 13. Bxe2 Bc6 14. a3 Bf8 a suggestion of Orlov who was unsuccessful with 14... Bc5 here, although I believe that move is also fully playable. 15. O-O Bg7 Black could also try 15... Qf6 (or 15...Qg5) with the possibility of castling queenside, but it is likely that this would only lead to a transposition into the game after 16. Rad1 Bg7 16. Rad1 Qf6 17. Rd3 O-O 18. Bf3 Bxf3 19. Rxf3 Qg5 19... Qg6 20. Qxg6 fxg6 is also about equal. 20. Rd1 Rad8 21. Rfd3 [½:½]

there really isn't much going on after 21... Rxd3 22. Qxd3 Bxc3 23. Qxc3 Rd8 This assured me of at least a tie for first place.

In the other games, McEntee and Karagianis played a very quick draw and got an early start on their return trip to Iowa. Wallach claimed another victim with the Stonewall when Burgess blundered two pawns early in the middlegame. Loncarevic tried another opening gambit against Chow and the play was quite unclear for a while, but Chow eventually prevailed. That left only the game Karklins-Stamnov, where Aleks could tie me if he won. Karklins dropped a pawn in the opening, but managed to find some compensation and eventually won his pawn back with an attacking position after 24...Kf8

I was of course rooting for the perpetual check, but it is quite understandable that Karklins played on. 25. h4 Bf5 26. Nd5 Ne7 27. Nf6 White could also consider snatching a pawn with 27. Nxc7 but after much thought he went back to the kingside attack. 27... Nc6 28. h5 d5 29. hxg6 29. h6 d4 30. Bd2 Ke7 doesn't look as bad for Black as the game continuation. 29... fxg6 on 29... Bxg6 the dream sequence is 30. Rh8+ Kg7?? 31. Ne8# but it isn't clear what White has after 30... Ke7 so better is the tactical sequence 30. f5 Bxf5 31. Nxd5 Rxd5 32. Rg8+ Ke7 (32... Kxg8 33. Rh8#) 33. Rxa8 winning the exchange 30. Rh8+ This may be a misstep as the Black king is able to run out Better looks to be 30. Rh7 d4 31. Bd2 Rac8 32. Rg5 with the idea g4; 30... Ke7 31. Re3+ Kd6 32. Rxd8+ 32. Be5+ Nxe5 33. fxe5+ Ke6 34. Rh1 Rh8 35. Rd1 Rad8 36. g4 Be4 37. Nxe4 dxe4 leads to an equal ending. A more complex alternative is 32. Ne8+ Kc5 (32... Kd7 33. Rh7+ ) 33. Bf6 or 33. Bg7 although the White pieces look somewhat awkward in this line 32... Rxd8 33. Bd2? A serious mistake giving up control of h8. 33. g4 d4 34. Bxd4 Nxd4 35. gxf5 Nxf5 is an equal ending It also isn't clear that Black can do better than repeating moves after 33. Ne8+ Kd7 34. Nf6+ 33... Rf8! An important in between move. On the immediate 33... Rh8 White has perpetual check with 34. Ne8+ Kc5 (34... Kd7 35. Nf6+ Kd8 36. Nxd5) 35. Rc3+ Kb6 (35... Kd4 36. Be3+ Ke4 37. Nf6#) 36. Rb3+ 34. Nh7 Rh8 35. Ng5 Rh1+ 36. Bc1 Nd4 and Black was in full control and won a few moves later

Final Standings: Bereolos, Stamnov 6; Chow, Wallach 5.5; Tennant 5; Karklins 4.5; McEntee 3.5; Burgess, Karagianis, Loncarevic, 3 Once again, I'd like to thank the organizers Glenn Panner and Len Weber for inviting me. I don't get to play in many round robin events, especially against such a high caliber of competition. Again, special thanks to Tim McEntee for his generous sponsorship. Finally, congratulations to all the players for playing such interesting chess. I have really enjoyed analyzing these game the past couple of weeks and am looking forward to the comments of the other participants in the tournament book. Also, there is supposed to be coverage in the Illinois and Iowa state magazines as well as on Pete Karagianis' website. Hopefully, we'll all be able to do it again next year!

9/18/05 - Colias Memorial - Round 8

In Round 8, I had the White pieces against Ken Wallach, who had made a nice comeback after losing his first two games.1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nc3 f5 trying to reach a Stonewall while avoiding several gambits, but White just gets a comfortable edge by playing simply.

4. cxd5 cxd5 in a regular Stonewall an exchange on d5 would be met by exd5. 5. Bf4 If White is determined to play a gambit, he might investigate 5. e4 dxe4 6. f3 leading to a Staunton Gambit with c-pawns missing.; Robert Loncarevic suggested 5. Bg5 hoping to provoke a weakness by 5... h6 6. Bf4 5... Nc6 6. Nf3 Another possibility is 6. e3 leaving open the option to develop the knight to e2. 6... e6 7. e3 Bd6 8. Bb5 Bxf4 9. exf4 Nge7 10. O-O O-O 11. Bxc6 Nxc6 12. Re1 h6 13. Ne5 probably a bit premature since piece trades help ease Black's position. Better was 13. Rc1 or 13. Qb3 13... Nxe5 14. Rxe5 Bd7 15. Rc1 15. Qb3 is again an improvement. Now, Black manages to stir up some counterplay on the queenside. 15... Qb6 16. Qd2 Rfc8 17. Ree1 Rc4 18. Ne2 Rb4 19. b3 a5 20. Rc5 a4 21. Nc1 axb3 22. axb3 Rc8 The rook had no future on the a-file, so he wisely exchanges before White gets a grip on the c-file with Qc3. 23. Rxc8+ Bxc8 24. Qc3 Bd7 25. Rd1 Kh7 26. h3 Be8

27. Rd3 I wanted to try and invade the dark squares with Qe5 and Rd3 to play either Rg3 or Rc3-c7 but I think I think the immediate 27. Qe3 would be a better way to try to realize this plan 27... Bh5 28. Qd2 Be8 29. Qc3 29. Qe3 Bb5 30. Rd2 Be8 (30... Ba6!?) 31. Qe5 Qc6 doesn't seem to be making progress, but perhaps White could sacrifice a pawn with 32. Nd3!? Rxb3 33. Nc5 29... Bh5 30. Qd2 Be8 [½:½]

Chow lost his second straight game, this time with White against Karklins. With his time running down, he engaged in a risky king walk, but the situation was still far from clear after 34...Qb1

35. Bd6 In the post mortem, Albert suggested 35. Rd8, I didn't really catch all of the analysis because things got a little testy between Chow and Tennant when Tennant joined in and I decided not to stick around in that environment. The main point is that if Black plays as in the game with 35...Qf1+ 36. Kh4 Rg2 37. Kg5 Rxh2 White turns the tables with 38. Rxf8+ Kxf8 39. Qb4+ Black also looks to be in some trouble after 35... h6 36. Qc4 so he would probably have to find 35... Kf7 36. Qc4 Be7 37. Rb8 when it is still complicated. 35... Qf1+ 36. Kh4 Rg2 37. Bxf8 Rxh2+ As Tennant and others pointed out, 37... h6 would force White to lose massive amounts of material to avoid mate. 38. Kg5 Rh6 [0:1] I believe Chow's flag fell here. While things still look dicey for the White king, it look like White has a saving resource with 39. Bxg7! Rg6+ 40. Kh5 Qh1+ 41. Qh4 Qxf3+ 42. g4 and there doesn't seem to be a knockout blow for Black. Meanwhile, Black's king is suddenly in massive danger. So it looks like Black would have to bail out into a rook ending with 41...Qxh4+ but White should have excellent winning chances thanks to his outside passed pawn.

Another Slav Defense, which may be of theoretical interest took place between Karagianis and Stamnov. 1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. Nc3 dxc4 5. a4 Bf5 6. Ne5 Nbd7 7. Nxc4 Qc7 8. g3 e5 9. dxe5 Nxe5 10. Bf4 Nfd7 11. Bg2 f6 Avoiding Morozevich's 11... g5 which had occurred in McEntee's games against Stamnov and Loncarevic 12. O-O Nc5 This is the modern move. 12... Rd8 was played in both of the Euwe-Alekhine World Championship matches. 13. e4 13. Ne3is thought to be more critical. 13... Be6!? Novelty or did he get confused with the line 13. Ne3 Be6 The normal move is 13... Bg6

14. Bxe5 Perhaps 14. Nxe5 not surrendering the bishop pair is a better option. 14... fxe5 15. Qh5+ Qf7 16. Qxf7+ Kxf7 17. Bxe5 Nd3 18. Bd4 and Black doesn't seem to have the compensation he gets in the game. 14... fxe5 15. Qh5+ g6 16. Qxe5 Qxe5 17. Nxe5 O-O-O with two strong bishops, the weaknesses in White's queenside, and the lack of outposts for White's knights, Black seems to have enough compensation for the pawn. Black later won after a White's exchange sacrifice didn't yield enough.

Loncarevic tried a gambit of ill-repute with Black against Burgess 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. Nxe5 Nxe4?! 4. Qe2 Qe7 5. Qxe4 d6 6. d4 dxe5 7. Qxe5 7. dxe5 is thought to be a surer way for White to secure an edge 7... Qxe5+ 8. dxe5 Bf5 9. c3 Nd7 Here, Black's freer development is supposed to give him compensation, and indeed Black has a good score from here in practice. However, in the game, White ended up in a nice position without any dramatic errors by Black and went on to win.

In the other game, McEntee went badly wrong in a complex middlegame against Tennant and had to give up a piece. With one round to go: Bereolos 5.5; Stamnov 5; Chow, Karklins, Tennant, Wallach 4.5; Burgess, Loncarevic, McEntee 3; Karagianis 2.5.

9/17/05 - Colias Memorial - Round 7

Between rounds the players were treated to pizza courtesy of Fred Gruenberg. Fred was not able to visit the tournament, so I'll give my thanks here. Some of the players speculated that Fred was the anonymous donor who was putting up the prize fund, but the organizers denied this.

For the second time in the tournament, I scored a very short win, this time with Black against Robert Loncarevic. 1. e4 e5 2. f4 exf4 3. Nf3 g5 4. h4 g4 5. Ne5 Bg7 6. Nxg4 Theory has mainly focused on 6. d4 6... d5 7. exd5? 7. d4 is probably still the best move

7... Qe7+ Korchnoi's analysis concludes that Black has a decisive edge, this game seems to confirm that assessment. 8. Kf2 interposing on e2 would leave the g4 knight hanging, so the king has to go for a walk. 8... Bd4+ 9. Kf3 h5! Black also has a large advantage after 9... Bxg4+ 10. Kxg4 Nf6+ but I really liked this energetic move going for the kill. The idea is to sacrifice the h-pawn to open a file for the rook. 10. Bb5+ Since White ends up getting mated on g2 in the game, one might wonder if he would do better without this check. Here's a variation that shows the answer is no 10. Nf2 Bg4+ 11. Nxg4 hxg4+ 12. Kxg4 Nf6+ 13. Kxf4 Qe5+ 14. Kf3 Qf5+ 15. Ke2 (15. Kg3 Bf2+) 15... Qe4# 10... Kf8 11. Nf2 Bg4+ 12. Nxg4 hxg4+ 13. Kxg4 Nf6+ 14. Kxf4 not allowing the bonecrushing 14. Kh3 Rxh4+ and Black mates. 14... Qe4+ 15. Kg3 Rg8+ [0:1]

The standings really got shaken up this round, the only time every game was decisive. In an ideal result for me, both of the previously undefeated players lost, leaving me alone in first. Chow lost with Black against Stamnov when he allowed a breakthrough after 38. Ng2

The position is roughly level, but Albert went wrong with 38...f5 38...Kf7 would avoid White's trick. 39. b5 axb5 40. Qa8+ Kf7 41. Qxb7 and the passed pawn gave White an advantage that he was able to covert.

Tennant lost with White in the endgame against Karagianis after 43...h5

Knight endings are much like pawn ending since outside passed pawns, especially rook pawns, can become quite powerful. I think White needs to take some care here that Black isn't able to sneak in ...h4, so I would suggest 44. Kg3. Instead, Tennant opted for 44. Ne3?! Now, Black could obtain a comfortable edge with 44...h4. Karagianis chose to first attack the d-pawn 44...Ne6 45. Nc2? Instead of this passive move, 45. gxh5 Nxd4 46. f4 would likely have led to a draw. Now, Karaganis played 45...h4 and White was in a lot of trouble. Black's king and knight are both better and the connected White pawns are paralyzed. Black soon won.

In the other games, Ken "Stone" Wallach, scored another victory with the Stonewall with White against McEntee. Karklins-Burgess looked level for quite sometime until Jon got his knight stuck behind enemy lines and ended up with a horrible pawn structure. Heading into the final day: Bereolos 5, Chow 4.5, Stamnov, Wallach 4; Karklins, Tennant 3.5; Loncarevic, McEntee 3; Karagianis 2.5; Burgess 2.

9/16/05 - Colias Memorial - Round 6

I played probably my best game of the tournament in Round 6 with White against Andrew Karklins. This was our first meeting despite the fact that he has been playing master level chess since before I was born. Many people don't realize that before the Russian invasion Andrew was one of the top players in the country. He even participated in a couple of US Championships in the early 1970s, finishing with an even score in the 1973 event. 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. g3 Bb4+ 4. Nc3 c5 5. Nf3 d6 6. Bg2 Nc6 7. O-O e5 8. d5 I pondered 8. dxe5 Bxc3 9. bxc3 Nxe5 (9... dxe5 10. Qxd8+ Kxd8 11. Ng5 also needs to be examined) 10. Nxe5 dxe5 11. Qxd8+ Kxd8 which looks pretty good for White with ideas like Be3, Rb1, Rd1 and Black is under some pressure. I eventually decided to instead just take a space advantage since it was hard to calculate the long lines and I knew that in some analogous positions Black can just give up the c5 pawn and play against whites doubled pawns on the open file. 8... Ne7 with the idea of eventually reaching d4. 8... Bxc3? 9. dxc6 Ba5 10. Nxe5; 8... Na5 probably isn't as effective here as in some Nimzo positions since White hasn't been saddled with doubled c-pawns. 9. Nd2 O-O 10. e4 Nd7 11. a3 Ba5 now the doubled c-pawns after 11... Bxc3 12. bxc3 didn't concern me since d4 would be covered and Black would be left searching for counterplay. 12. Rb1 a6 13. b4 cxb4 14. axb4 Bb6 now Black seems to be getting some coordination. After ...f5 the rook and bishop will be bearing down on f2, so I play to lock out the bishop. 15. Nb3 Ba7 15... f5 16. c5 dxc5 17. d6 Nc6 18. bxc5 16. Ba3 f5 17. exf5 Nxf5 18. Ne4 Nf6 19. c5 Kh8 20. Bb2 Bd7 21. Re1 Qe8?

Walking straight into a tactic. I had expected either 21... Bb5 or 21...Ba4 to which I intended 22. Ng5 In a brief discussion afterwards he suggested 21... h6 but 22. Na5 intending Nc4 looks like a good reply 22. Nxd6 Nxd6 23. Bxe5 White will now regain his piece with interest, but the most important point is the poor placement of the a7 bishop. 23... Nb5 24. Bxf6 Qf7 25. Bd4 Rad8 26. Qd2 Bf5 27. Rbc1 Nxd4 28. Qxd4 I didn't even want him to have a whiff of counterplay such as 28. Nxd4 Rxd5 29. Bxd5 Qxd5 when White is winning but will have to pay attention to his light squares. 28... Bd7 29. Na5 b6 30. Nc4 30. cxb6 could also be played, but I decided to stick with the plan of keeping the Ba7 completely dead. 30... bxc5 31. bxc5 Bb5 32. Ne5 Qf6 33. Nf3 Qh6 34. Rc3 Rc8 35. Re7 Qg6 36. h4 Rf7 37. Rxf7 Qxf7 38. Ng5 Qf6 39. Qe4 g6 40. Rf3 Qa1+ 41. Kh2 Bxc5 the bishop finally comes to life only in time to see the monarch killed on the other side of the board. 42. Rf7 [1:0]

The theoretical debate in the Slav started in Round 1 between McEntee and Stamnov continued when McEntee and Loncarevic repeated the first 19 moves of that game 1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. Nc3 dxc4 5. a4 Bf5 6. Ne5 Nbd7 7. Nxc4 Qc7 8. g3 e5 9. dxe5 Nxe5 10. Bf4 Nfd7 11. Bg2 g5 12. Ne3 gxf4 13. Nxf5 O-O-O 14. Qc2 Nc5 15. O-O Ne6 16. Qe4 fxg3 17. hxg3 a5 18. Nb5 cxb5 19. axb5 Nc5

20. Qe3 Improving on 20. b6 of McEntee-Stamnov. Tim said he gave Aleks "half-credit" for the move, which implied to me that he had done some study of it during the week. 20... Nc4 Shirov sent his knight the other direction against Johannessen in the Bundesliga. 20... Ng4 21. Qc3 Qe5 22. Qf3 Qe4 23. Qxe4 Nxe4 24. Bxe4 with a nice edge to White although Shirov managed to hold on for a draw. 21. Qc3 Qe5 22. Qxc4 Qxf5 23. Rxa5 Kd7 24. b4 missing the big shot 24. Bh3! Qxh3 25. Qxf7+ Be7 26. Rd1+ Kc7 27. Qxe7+ and White wins 24... Rg8 25. b6 Rc8 26. Bxb7 Nxb7 27. Qd4+ Ke6 28. Rxf5 Kxf5 29. Qd7+ [1:0]

For the first time in the tournament, Albert Chow showed a bit of vulnerability with Black against Burgess after 17...Rae8

I'm not sure why Jon avoided the natural looking 18. Ng5 hitting h7 and e6. It looks like White gets a clear edge in all lines A)18... h5 19. Nf4 Qxe5 20. Nxg6 Rxf1+ 21. Rxf1 Qxe3+ 22. Qxe3 Bd4 23. Qxd4 Nxd4 24. Rf7; B) 18...h6 19. Nxe6 Qxe5 20. Bxd5 Rxf1+ (20... Nb4 21. Nxg7+ Nxd5 22. Nxe8 Qxe3+ 23. Qxe3 Nxe3 24. Nd6) 21. Rxf1 Qxd5 22. Nxg7 Rxe3 23. Qxe3 C)18... Rxf1+ 19. Rxf1 h5 20. Nf4 Qxe5 21. Nxh5 gxh5 22. Qxh5 Qxe3+ 23. Kh1. Instead after 18. Nf4 Rf5 Black covered both e6 and g5 and went on to win.

In Stamnov-Tennant, White won the exchange, but Black had compensation even in the ending as there were no open lines for the rooks. Aleks went through lots of contortions to try to avoid the draw but got into a lot of trouble. However, he got a reprieve when Tennant threw away the win late after 74. Kd2

When the Black king is trapped in front of the h-pawn, the White king needs to be cut off to at least the c-file for Black to win. Since the White king has already reached the d-file, Tennant's 74...Re4? was not useful. Instead, he had to get his king out from in front of the pawn with 74...Kg2! 75. Ke3 Rf3+! when the Black rook is poised to block checks from either the back or the side as in the game Bereolos-Ibragimov, 2003 World Open Instead, the game was drawn after 75. Kd3 Re7 76. Rh6 Kg3 77. Rg6+! Kh2 78. Kd2 h3 79. Rg8 Ra7 80. Ke2 Ra2+ 81. Kf1 Rg2 82. Rh8 Rg4 83. Rf8 Kg3 84. Kg1! [½:½]

Wallach played the Stonewall again, this time with Black against Karagianis. The game was balanced throughout but Pete went wrong in the endgame when he began to run low on time after 39...h4

40. Kd2? e5? Both players missed the breakthrough 40... g4! 41. gxh4 gxh4 42. Ba4? Instead 42. dxe5+ Kxe5 gives White reasonable chances to hold. Now, after 42... exd4 43. exd4 he had to many pawn weaknesses and Black won without difficulties. Standings with two-thirds of the rounds complete: Chow 4.5; Bereolos 4; Tennant 3.5; Loncarevic, McEntee, Stamnov, Wallach 3; Karklins 2.5; Burgess 2; Karagianis 1.5

9/14/05 - Colias Memorial - Round 5

Before this round, organizer Glenn Panner presented all the players with a copy of the book Billy Colias: Midwest Master (to which Al Chow and I were among the contributors). Ken Wallach had the nice idea of getting all the participants to sign his copy and pretty soon everybody was getting in on the act and swapping signatures.

This round seemed pretty crucial to me, since I was Black against the leader, Albert Chow. This was the only round played on a Friday night and it caused some travel problems especially for the players coming from Chicago. In addition to the usual Friday night traffic, the Bears were playing. I took an alternate route, but still arrived just at the scheduled 5 PM start, and several players including my opponent still had not arrived. The round formally started around 5:15 and by the time 5:45 rolled around, Steve Tennant told me I didn't have to wait for an hour of clock time, but could claim a forfeit at 6 PM. I asked TD Glenn Panner about this and he said we would wait for the full hour off of the clock and that Albert had called and should be arriving around 6. I think Steve had further discussion about this with Glenn, but Albert showed up just before 6 making the point moot. 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 I had focused most of my attention for this game on the King's Gambit, which Albert had played for many years. I decided that if he instead went for the Ruy Lopez that I would go for the Berlin endgame. Although Albert normally takes a lot of time, I thought that the Berlin might even gain me a larger clock advantage since: 1. It would be unexpected to him. Most of my games in the databases are with 3...a6. 2. It might be more unfamiliar to him, since he played the Kings Gambit for many years. 3. The positions are very subtle and there are generally several candidate moves in each position. I also think the positions are unbalanced enough that Black can maintain winning chances. I think the choice turned out to be a good one as sure enough he began spending gobs of time. 4. O-O Nxe4 5. d4 Nd6 6. Bxc6 dxc6 7. dxe5 Nf5 8. Qxd8+ Kxd8 9. Nc3 h6 10. b3 a5 11. Bb2 Bb4 11... Ke8 was played by Kramnik in this position, so it deserves a serious look. 12. Rad1+ Ke8 13. h3 Bxc3 13... Be6 is a reasonable alternative 14. Bxc3 h5?! I wasn't completely sure about the line 14... Be6 15. g4 Ne7 16. Nd4 h5 17. Nxe6 fxe6 but Black should be fine since White isn't ready to start a pawn roller with 18. f4 because of 18... hxg4 19. hxg4 Rh4 So, I decided to stop g4, but this move is a serious strategic error; 14... a4 also deserves attention

15. Rfe1 I realized after I moved that White has the very strong idea 15. Bd2 with the idea of Bg5 and a very strong dark square bind. While I was trying to figure out what to do he moved his rook and offered a draw. By this point I had a massive lead on the clock, with around 2.5 hours vs. 1 hour. However, I still didn't see a good plan against Bd2-g5 and thought 1 hour was still plenty of time for him, so I accepted instead of risking a loss which would put me 1.5 points behind with only 4 rounds to go. [½:½]

This round featured a couple of interesting endgames. In Wallach-Tennant, Black seemed to be in control for most of the game, but Wallach managed to reach a rook ending that turned into a pawn race after 36... Rxg5+

37. Kh2 Rg4 38. Rb7 g5 39. a5 Rc4 40. b5 It seems simpler to push the unobstructed pawn. 40. a6 h4 41. a7 Rc2+ 42. Kh1 Ra2 43. b5 g4= 40... h4 41. b6 g4 At first I thought Black could improve on the game with 41... Rc2+ 42. Kg1 (42. Kh3 Ra2 43. Rxf7+ Kxf7 44. b7 Rb2 45. a6 Kg6 46. a7 Kh5) 42... Ra2 avoiding Rc7 coming with tempo, but then it looks like White has the equalizing shot 43. Rxf7+ Kxf7 44. b7 Rb2 45. a6 Rb1+ 46. Kf2 h3 47. Kg3 Rb3+ 48. Kh2 g4 49. a7 Rb2+ 50. Kg1 when it looks too dangerous to play 50...Rxb7 51. a8Q, so Black should probably just take the perpetual. 42. a6? With the Black pawns advanced 42. Rxf7+ doesn't seem to work 42... Kxf7 43. b7 Rc2+ 44. Kg1 Rc1+ 45. Kf2 g3+ and Black will also promote. However, White can gain a tempo on the game with 42. Rc7 Rb4 43. b7= 42... Rc2+ 43. Kg1 h3? Black could gain a crucial tempo to advance his pawns with 43... Rc1+ 44. Kh2 (44. Kg2 h3+) 44... g3+ 45. Kg2 Rc2+ 46. Kf3 (46. Kg1 h3 47. Rc7 Rg2+ 48. Kh1 Ra2 49. Rc1 Rxa6 50. Rb1 Ra8 51. b7 Rb8 52. Kg1 f5) 46... g2 44. Rc7 Rg2+ 45. Kh1 g3 46. a7 Rh2+ 47. Kg1 Rg2+ 48. Kh1 Rh2+ 49. Kg1 [½:½]

Loncarevic-Karagianis was a complex game. What interested me most at the time was the fact that Robert had played the Kings Gambit. Since I was to play him two rounds later, I thought I might get to use some of my preparation for the Chow game. After I left, they ended up in a fascinating endgame after 47. Nxf6

47... Ke6? It appears that the way to draw is a more passive defense 47... Kc6 48. Ng4 Kb6 49. Ne5 Kb7 (49... a5? 50. b5 a4 51. Kb4 a3 52. Nc4+ +-) 50. Kc5 Kc7! when I don't see how Black can be moved off of the squares b7 and c7. If the White king heads towards the g-pawn, Black will be able to trade pawns with ...a5. 48. Ng4? 48. Ne4! gains a crucial tempo for penetration with the king. 48... g4 49. Kc5 Ke5 50. Ng3 Kf4 51. Nf1 Kf3 52. Nh2+ +- 48... Kf5? Black should have headed back with 48... Kd6 49. Nh2 Ke4 50. Kb3? 50. Kc5 Kd3 51. Nf3 g4 52. Ne5+ is straightforward 50... Kd3? The other squares on the d-file are also mined. 50... Kd5? 51. Ka4! Kc6 52. Nf3 g4 53. Ne5+; 50... Kd4? 51. Nf3+ The only way to draw was to approach the knight.; 50... Kf4! 51. Ka4 Kg3! 52. Nf1+ Kf2! 53. Nd2 g4 54. Ka5 Ke3 (54... g3? 55. Ne4+) 55. Nf1 Kf2 = 51. Ka4? 51. Nf3! g4 52. Ne5+ 51... Kc3! 52. Ka5 Kb3! 53. Ng4 Kc3? Another unfortunate square for the king. 53... Kc4!= 54. Nf2? 54. Ne5! Kb3 55. Nc6 g4 56. Kxa6 g3 57. b5 g2 58. Nd4+ 54... Kb3 55. Ng4 Kc3? 56. Ka4? Kb2 57. Nf2 57. Ka5 Kb3! avoids the check at the end of the previous variation 58. Ne5 Kc3 59. Nc6 g4 60. Kxa6 g3 61. b5 g2 62. b6 g1=Q 63. b7 with a draw. 57... Kc2 58. Ka3 Kc1 59. Kb3 Kb1! It wasn't too late to go wrong with 59... Kd2? 60. Ne4+ 60. Ng4 Ka1 61. Ka3 Kb1 62. Nf2 Ka1 [½:½]

Burgess-Stamnov saw a new move in a variation of the Petroff's that has been played at the highest levels 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. Nxe5 d6 4. Nf3 Nxe4 5. d4 d5 6. Bd3 Nc6 7. O-O Be7 8. c4 Nb4 9. Be2 O-O 10. Nc3 Bf5 11. a3 Nxc3 12. bxc3 Nc6 13. cxd5 Qxd5 14. Re1 Be4

This idea has been seen before, but not in this particular position 15. Bf4 Bd6 15...Rac8 also seems solid 16. c4 Qf5 17. Bxd6 cxd6 18. d5 Bxf3 19. Bxf3 Ne5 Black seemed to have a reasonable position although later it looked like White got a large advantage. Jon later blundered horribly trying to avoid a draw.

In the final game, McEntee got a cramped position in the opening against Karklins and never got his pieces out, so suffered his first loss. After 5 rounds: Chow 3.5; Bereolos, Loncarevic, Tennant 3; Karklins, Stamnov 2.5; Burgess, McEntee, Wallach 2; Karagianis 1.5.

9/11/05 - Colias Memorial - Round 4

In Round 4 I played the other "foreign" participant, Jon Burgess from England. Like Aleks Stamnov, Jon has been living in the US recently. I was able to get back in the thick of things when he fell into an opening trap. 1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Nf3 e6 5. Bg5 h6 with a draw offer, which I declined. 6. Bxf6 Qxf6 7. Qc2 g6? 7... Nd7 is the normal move

8. cxd5 exd5 9. Nxd5 Qd6 10. Nc3 Bg7 11. e3 O-O 12. Be2 Nd7 13. O-O Re8 14. Bc4 [1:0] He decided to resign rather than try to grovel for 5 or 6 hours. I'm not sure how much the time control factored into his decision. As I mentioned previously, the rate was a very leisurely G/3. So basically, there was little hope of me falling into time pressure. Jon and Robert Loncarevic were the most outspoken against this rate. I didn't really care for it as it seemed to upset the normal flow of games. I understand that quality can suffer when you speed up the time controls, but I think it can also suffer when the players have to play for 11 or 12 hours in a single day. On the other side of the argument was Albert Chow, who will take any and all time he can (the organizers even brought out a new chess clock, the Chow-nos, which was a sundial!). I also heard second-hand that Andrew Karklins would not have played if it had been held with the standard 40/2, SD/1 format, which I thought was a bit odd since he plays in events all around the country with that time control. Albert was of the opinion that you have to experiment with different rates and give them all a fair shake. Personally, I feel that if an experimental time control was going to be used, then it probably should have been the FIDE G/90 with a 30 second bonus per move. However, organizer Len Weber seemed pretty strong in his stance that Chess Club 2K would not run tournaments with that time control. Perhaps some intermediate compromise could be tried, such as G/2 with a 30 or 45 second bonus.

For the second round in a row, it looked like Loncarevic missed another chance to pull off an upset, this time with the Black pieces against Tennant 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. f3 c5 5. d5 b5 6. e4 bxc4 7. Bxc4 Nxd5 when I first saw this I thought it must be a typo 8. Bxd5 8. exd5 Qh4+ with advantage to Black is the point 8... exd5 9. Qxd5 Nc6 10. Bd2 This is a rare move. Normal is the immediate 10. Nge2, which seems more flexible 10... O-O 11. Nge2 Ba6 12. a3 Bxc3 13. Bxc3 Qb6 14. Qd2 Bxe2 15. Qxe2 d5 16. O-O

16... Rfe8 16... c4+ followed by d4 and the transfer of the knight to d3 looks very promising for Black. 17. Rfd1 c4+ 18. Qf2 dxe4 19. fxe4 Qxf2+ 20. Kxf2 Rxe4 [½:½] White has some compensation after 21. Rd7, but I think Black should have played on.

Karagianis finally got on the scoreboard with a win over Karklins with an exchange sacrifice that netted him 3 connected passed pawns. Chow consolidated his lead with a very short draw against McEntee. Ken Wallach got his first win of the tournament vs. Stamnov trotting out the Stonewall 1. d4 d5 2. e3 Nf6 3. f4 Scores after the first weekend: Chow 3; Bereolos, Loncarevic, Tennant 2.5; Burgess, McEntee 2; Karklins, Stamnov, Wallach 1.5, Karagianis 1.

9/10/05 - Colias Memorial - Round 3

Billy's parents had stopped by the tournament site during Round 1. It was nice to see them again, since I had seen them rarely since Billy's funeral. I didn't get much time to visit with them, though, since I was playing. Mr. Colias returned before Round 3 as well as the following Saturday and I got to catch up and reminisce with him before the round.

My opponent in Round 3 was Aleks Stamnov from Macedonia who has been living in the Chicago area the past several years. Although I had played many of the players in the tournament before, Aleks was the only player I had recent experience against, losing to him with Black in the 1993 Land of the Sky tournament. I was hoping to avenge that defeat with the same colors and same opening, but alas, this wasn't my day. 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 exd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 Bb4 6. Nxc6 bxc6 7. Bd3 d5 8. exd5 cxd5 9. O-O O-O 10. Bg5 c6 11. Na4 h6

I chose 11... Be7 in this position against Aleks in the 2003 Land of the Sky tournament. I also equalized out of the opening in that game, but went astray in the ending and lost. I decided on a more active development of the bishop for the present game. 12. Bh4 Re8 13. c4 Bd6 14. cxd5 cxd5 15. Nc3 Be5 16. Re1 Bb7 17. Qa4 17. Qd2 has been seen in this position previously. The text maintains more control over e4, but less over b2. 17... Qd6 the immediate 17... Qb6 hitting b2 is probably a more accurate reply to White's last move 18. Bg3 Bxg3 19. hxg3 Qb6 20. Qc2 trying to immediately conquer d4 with 20. Ne2 runs into 20... Ne4 (20... Qxb2 21. Rab1) 21. Qd4 Nxg3! 20... Rac8 the attempted freeing combination 20... Ne4 21. Nxe4 dxe4 22. Bxe4 Bxe4 23. Rxe4 Rxe4 24. Qxe4 because Ra8 hangs with check 21. Bf5 Rcd8 21... d4 deserves serious consideration opening up the light squared bishop before white can blockade on d4. 22. Na4 Qa5 23. Red1 Ne4 this was the last chance for 23... d4 when Black is still better. Now White gets a nagging edge because of the purely defensive light squared bishop.

24. Rd4 Qa6 25. Rad1 Qf6 26. Bg4 Qg6 27. Bf3 Rc8 28. Qb3 Ba8 29. Nc3 Nxc3 30. bxc3 Qf6 31. Qa4 Qb6 32. Bg4 Rb8 33. Bf5 g6 this weakening of the kingside was not really necessary 34. Bg4 Qc5 35. Qc2 Bc6?! I wanted to play Qa3 without allowing Ra4, but the bishop turns out to be quite vulnerable here. 36. Qd2 Kg7? 36... Re5 intending 37. Qxh6 Qxc3 is about equal. 37. Bf3?! it looks like he missed a chance here with 37. Bd7 Re5 38. Qf4 f6 39. Bxc6 Qxc6 40. c4 37... Rbc8 totally missing his idea, Black is still defending with 37... Re5 38. Rh4 Rh8? still oblivious to his tactic 38... h5?! 39. g4 launches a strong attack, but 38... g5 39. Rd4 Re5 seems to still be holding although Black's kingside is much looser than he would like it to be, all of which can be traced back to ...g6.

39. c4 Ba4 39... dxc4 40. Qc3+ and Rxc4 wins, so White wins a pawn for nothing and Black is left with a bunch of misplaced pieces. 40. Qb2+ d4 41. Rdxd4 Qe5 42. Rhe4 Qf6 43. Rf4 Qe5 44. Rxf7+ Kxf7 45. Rf4+ Ke6 45... Qxf4 might hold out longer, but Blacks forces are too scattered to put up serious resistance. 46. Bd5+ Kd6 47. Rf6+ Qxf6 48. Qxf6+ Kc5 49. Qe7+ Kb6 50. Qb4+ [1:0]

Chow took the lead (although that wasn't clear at the time since Tennant-Chow was still pending) when Karagianis again went astray in the opening. 1. c4 e5 2. Nc3 f5 3. d4 e4 4. Nh3 c6 5. Bg5 Nf6 6. e3 Be7 7. Nf4 O-O 8. c5 b6 9. Bc4+ Kh8 10. h4 Ng4?

11. Nxe4 fxe4 12. Bxe7 Qxe7 13. Qxg4 bxc5 13... d5 14. cxd6 hitting the queen may have been what Pete missed, but it was probably the best chance as at least the White king gets displaced after 14...Qxd6 15. Qe2 Qb4+ 16. Kf1 14. Qg5 14. h5 is also strong with the idea 14...d5? 15. Ng6+ hxg6 16. hxg6+ Kg8 17. Rh8+ Kxh8 18. Qh5+ Kg8 19. Qh7# 14... Qxg5 15. hxg5 Rxf4 there was no better way to deal with the threat of Ng6+. 16. exf4 and White won

Wallach finally got on the board with a draw with Black against Loncarevic, but it looks like Robert may have missed an opportunity after 22...Rxe3

Black's has just sacrificed the exchange on e3 and has all his pieces in the vicinity of the White king. But here, instead of 23. Qxd5 White has the stunning 23. Rxd5 Bh2+ 24. Kh1 Ng3+ 25. Kxh2 Ne2+ 26. Re5! Rxe5 27. Qxb7 with a big edge. After the text Black had compensation after 23... Bc5 24. Rd4 Bxd4 25. Qxd4 25. cxd4 deserves attention 25... Qe7 [½:½]

Tennant kept pace with a win with Black against Karklins. White won the exchange in the middlegame, but Black it looked like black got powerful compensation with the two bishops and a strong passed pawn. Still, White might have been holding even at the late stage after 27...a2

White collapsed quickly after 28. g4 perhaps imagining a Nh6/Rg8/Kg7 type of mating configuration, but it doesn't quite get there. Instead activating the king with 28. Kf1 Bd4 29. Ke2 looks like it might give White chances to hold. 28... Bd4 29. g5 Rxb6 30. Ra8+ Kg7 31. Ng4 Bd5 [0:1]

I didn't really understand much of the final game of the round between Burgess and McEntee. It looked like Jon was much better the whole time, but Tim managed to keep it together and reach an opposite colored bishop ending. After 3 Rounds: Chow 2.5, Burgess, Loncarevic, Tennant 2; Bereolos, Karklins, Stamnov, McEntee 1.5, Wallach 0.5, Karagianis 0.

9/8/05 - Colias Memorial - Round 2

In round 2, I had Black against Tim McEntee, the player I had played the most among the other participants. During lunch, I commented to Tim and Pete Karagianis that I thought Billy was still the player I had played the most rated games against despite his untimely passing over 10 years ago. A check of my database indicates that I've actually played Brad Watson 19 times, as opposed to 18 games against Billy. However, Billy and I did play numerous unrated games that were held under tournament conditions when we battled for first board rights at Wilbur Wright Middle School and Munster High School. Besides those games, we must have also played thousands of blitz games against each other.

This was my 11th meeting with Tim, but we hadn't played since 1993, when we faced off 4 times. I came away from those meetings with 3 wins, but the game he won was in the variation that appeared in the present game. 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 d6 5. Nge2 O-O 6. Ng3 c5 7. d5 e6 8. Be2 8. h4 was his choice in the aforementioned game. However, the result of that game had little to do with the opening. 8... exd5 9. cxd5 a6 10. a4 Nbd7 11. Bf4 Qc7 12. O-O Re8 13. Qc2 13. Qd2 seemed like a more natural place for the queen, but apparently he had been successful with this sort of setup. 13... Rb8 14. Rfd1 Ne5 15. Nf1 Bd7 The text turns out to be a tad too ambitious, so the more restrained 15... b6 was probably in order. 16. a5 c4 I didn't see how else to make progress since Black doesn't seem to have quite enough compensation after 16... b5 17. axb6 Qxb6 18. Rxa6 Qxb2 19. Qxb2 Rxb2 20. Rxd6 Nxe4 21. Nxe4 Rxe2 22. Nxc5 although the bishop pair may count for something. 17. Nd2 Bb5 18. Be3 Qe7 19. f3 Rbc8 20. Ndb1

simple chess, he just wants to win a pawn on b5 or c4. However, the Benoni often contains dynamic resources for Black and I managed to find some counterplay. 20... Nfd7 21. Na3 Nd3 22. Naxb5 axb5 23. Bxd3 cxd3 24. Qxd3 b4 25. Na4 f5 26. Qb3 fxe4 27. f4 Nf6 28. h3 Rf8 29. Qxb4 Nh5 30. Rf1 Ng3 31. Rfe1 Nf5 32. Nc3 Nxe3

By this point the brouhaha around the Tennant-Chow game had erupted making it very hard to concentrate. White's last move also caught me a bit off guard since for the past few moves Nb6 was a focus of my attention. I wasn't really sure what the assessment of this position was. I felt White stood better, but that Black probably had sufficient counter chances. I wasn't sure if the right approach was to bank on the superiority of the bishop over the knight or if I needed to trade minor pieces leaving him with some loose pawns in the major piece ending. With all this confusion, I decided to offer a draw and try to figure out what to do next while he was considering it. After a little bit of thought he accepted. 33. Rxe3 Rxf4 34. Rae1 (I had managed to calculate the variation 34. Nxe4 Bxb2 35. Qxb2 Rxe4 36. Rxe4 Qxe4 37. Qxb7 Qd4+ 38. Kh2 Qe5+ -+ but for some reason thought it was only a perpetual. I think I would have seen that I'm winning a whole rook if we had gotten there.. 34... Be5 (this looks better than 34... Bxc3 35. bxc3 when the Black king might be a little airy. At least my Kings Indian instincts were in place and I was wary of trading the bishop for the knight. [½:½]

The game Stamnov-Loncarevic was quite sensational. I had been told that they study together and that last year they had played the rather spectacular looking line in the Pirc where Black sacrifices his queen for perpetual check. When I saw that a crazy line of the Two Knights Defense had been played and that White had sacrificed his queen, I thought it was more of the same. However, a short time later there was a bit of a commotion around their board and it turned out that Stamnov was mated! 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Nf6 4. Ng5 Bc5 5. Nxf7 The rare times this variation has been played at high level have seen White go for a small plus with 5. Bxf7+ instead of the insanity associated with the text. See, for example, the games, Karpov-Beliavsky, USSR 1986 and Anand-Beliavsky, Linares 1991 5... Bxf2+ 6. Kf1 6. Kxf2 Nxe4+ followed by Qh4 with an attacking position is the point of Black's play. 6... Qe7 7. Nxh8 d5 8. exd5 Bg4 8... Nd4 seems to be the main move here, with Black scoring well in practice. 9. Be2 Bxe2+ 10. Qxe2 In ECO, Gligorich gave 10. Kxe2 Nd4+ 11. Kxf2 Ne4+ 12. Ke3 (12. Kg1 is the only move I have found played in practice.) 12... Qg5+ 13. Kxe4 Qxg2+ 14. Kd3 Qh3+ 15. Ke4 (15. Kc4 b5+ 16. Kc5 Qh4-+) 15... Qg2+ with a draw, but 16. Kxe5 (if this move is good White should play it on move 14 in order to avoid 15...Qh4+ in the given line). 16... Nf3+ 17. Ke4 O-O-O which Gligo assessed as winning for Black doesn't look that clearcut after the computer suggestion 18. c4 but you would have to be prepared to the teeth or a total madman to play such a risky looking king march. 10... Nd4 11. Qxf2 O-O-O 12. c3 This looks like a new move. White has tried various moves here with mixed success. 12... Rf8 13. cxd4 Ng4 14. Qxf8+ Qxf8+ 15. Ke1 Qf2+ 16. Kd1 exd4 17. Re1?? In the database I received of the tournament games 17. d3 was a suggestion here, with no other followup. I think Black has decent play after 17... Ne3+ 18. Bxe3 dxe3. Instead 17. Kc2 Qe2 looks like it could end in perpetual, for example 18. b3 Qe4+ 19. Kb2 Nf2 20. Rf1 Nd3+ 21. Kc2 Nf2+= but Black could also try for more with 17... Ne3+ 18. Kb3 Qxg2 17... d3 suddenly the White king is trapped by his own pieces! 18. h3 Qf3+ 19. gxf3 Nf2# [0:1]

Burgess got a very nice position out of the opening with Black against Karagianis. 1. d4 d5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. c4 c6 4. Nc3 e6 5. e3 Nbd7 6. Qc2 Bd6 7. Bd3 O-O 8. O-O dxc4 9. Bxc4 e5 10. e4?! 10. h3, 10. Rd1, or 10. Bb3 are prefereable. 10... exd4 11. Nxd4 Nb6 with the dual threats of Nxc4 and Bxh2+ 12. Qd3 Nxc4 13. Qxc4 Re8 14. Re1 The two bishops already give Black a comfortable game, he decided to go on the attack with a piece sacrifice 14... Ng4 15. h3 Qh4 16. Re2 We could have seen the second wandering king of the round after 16. hxg4 Qh2+ 17. Kf1 Qh1+ 18. Ke2 Bxg4+ 19. f3 Qxg2+ 20. Ke3 c5 21. fxg4 cxd4+ 22. Kxd4 but I don't think this one would have survived 16... Ne5 17. Qb3 Bxh3 18. gxh3 White is pretty much obliged to accept this sacrifice 18...Bc5 White managed to avoid mate but was a pawn down with an uncomfortable king for the rest of the game after 19. Ncb5 cxb5. On top of all these problems, Pete also fell into terrible time pressure. I saw one trick he might have gone for near the end when he only had a few seconds left.

Instead of 42. Rg4 42. Re5 would set one final trap if Black gets careless and allows 43. Qxh7+ Kxh7 44. Rh5# Instead, after the text, the game soon ended 42... Rd2 43. Qe4 Qxf6 44. Rgg2 Qxf4+ [0:1]

The only major controversy of the tournament occurred during this round in the game Tennant-Chow. With Chow having only a few seconds left on his clock (the time control was a much discussed G/3 with 5 seconds delay, but more on this later) versus over an hour for Tennant the following position occurred with White to play.

I was playing on the other side of the room, but as I mentioned in the notes to my game it caused quite a commotion. As I was not a direct witness, I can only give my impressions of what I heard and was later told by those involved. Chief TD Glen Panner was directly observing the time scramble and here Tennant played 55. d8 announced "Queen" and started Chow's clock. My understanding is that Chow started to grab a queen to replace the pawn, realized he only had a little time and played 55...Rxd8 and started complaining about the promotion being an illegal move. Panner said, "His intention was clear." Chow seemed to continue complaining and meanwhile they flashed out another couple of moves 56. Kxd8 h3? 57. Rg3 h2 58. Rh3 and then things completely erupted. Panner finally managed to get the players outside of the playing room to try to sort things out. Since the game was played under FIDE rules, he consulted the FIDE handbook, where section 7.4a seemed to have been written with this situation in mind. "If during a game it is found that an illegal move, including failing to meet the requirements of the promotion of a pawn or capturing the opponent`s king, has been completed, the position immediately before the irregularity shall be reinstated.". From this point forward, I think Panner handled the situation perfectly. With this evidence that he may have made a mistake in his ruling at the board, he declared the game adjourned. Then, he began calling around the country to get the opinion of International Arbiters. After those discussions he realized he had made a mistake and freely admitted it. The position from the diagram was reinstated and the game later played out. Of course, this time Chow played the correct 56...Kf4 and the game ended in a draw. The general consensus was that all 3 individuals involved had made mistakes. Tennant played an illegal move, Chow should have stopped the clocks to have his complaint heard on the spot, and Panner made an incorrect ruling at the board. However, I can sympathize with all three that things get crazy in the heat of battle especially when the clocks start running down. I think it is to Glen Panner's credit that he admitted his mistake and took all the necessary actions to reach what seems to be the correct decision according to the laws of chess. Unfortunately, there seemed to be a lot of bad blood between Tennant and Chow for the rest of the tournament.

While it might seem amazing that a rule could be so cleanly written, I speculated that the reason it might be so clear is because of the similar incident in the game Karpov-Kasparov, Linares 1993. This game has been forever immortalized by the following diagram after 22. Nc1

Everyone seems to recall the strange alignment of White pieces along the back rank, but what happened next is of interest to the present case 22...c3 23. Nxa2 c2 24. Qd4 cxd1 and seeing no Black queen handy and with Karpov in severe time pressure (there is a photo in New in Chess that shows Karpov's flag hanging by a thread while Kasparov has around 30 minutes), Kasparov announced "Queen" and started Karpov's clock. After much commotion (including a White queen placed on d1 as well as Karpov's claim that it should be a Black knight, Kasparov finally got his queen while Karpov got two extra minutes.

In the other game, Karklins beat Wallach in a bishop vs. knight ending when Wallach was unable to hold his attempted blockade. So when all the results of Round 2 were finally tallied, the standings were: Bereolos, Burgess, Chow, Karklins, Loncarevic 1.5; McEntee, Tennant 1; Wallach, Karagianis 0

9/6/05 - Colias Memorial - Round 1

The organizers had asked me to bring photos I had of Billy and my Mom had a lot of old photos and newspaper clippings from our middle school and high school days. I think it made a nice addition to the crosstables, scoresheets, and magazines that the organizers, Glenn Panner and Len Weber set up. I also donated a trophy to the tournament. Back in 1980, Ed Vano, an organizer and teacher in Northwest Indiana, organized a tournament for teenage players. Billy's parents were one of the sponsors of the event and donated a trophy called the "Colias Cup" which was intended to be a traveling trophy for that tournament. I was fortunate enough to win that event ahead of Billy and then Munster High School's top player, Ilya Schwartzman. Unfortunately, Mr. Vano's tournaments suffered some financial setbacks later that year and 1980 was the only edition of the "Teenage Special" ever held. So, I've had this trophy for 25 years and thought it made an appropriate award for this tournament.

Before the round, I got to renew some old acquaintances, and met Robert Loncarevic and my first round opponent, Pete Karagianis for the first time. I got off to a somewhat rocky start with the White pieces against the defending co-champion. 1. d4 d5 2. c4 e6 Almost all the games of Pete's that I was able to locate before the tournament had featured the Slav Defense, so my preparation was out the window on move two. 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. cxd5 exd5 5. Bg5 Be7 6. Qc2 O-O 7. e3 c6 8. Bd3 h6 9. Bh4 9. Bxf6 Bxf6 10. b4 is a possible way to take advantage of Black's omission of Nbd7 9... Re8 10. f3?! A very superficial move. I thought on the routine 10. Nge2 or 10. Nf3 that Black was just equalizing with 10...Ne4, but White probably keeps his normal opening advantage in either case. 10... Nh5 11. Bf2 Bg5 12. e4 My initial thought was to hunker down with 12. Nd1 Nf4 13. Bf1 but White is totally underdeveloped and I couldn't figure out a way to untangle. Somehow White drew from here in the game Jakab-Hocevar, Budapest 2000 after 13... Ne6 14. Ne2 c5 15. dxc5 Qa5+ 16. Qc3 Qxc5 17. Rc1 Na6 18. Qxc5 Naxc5 19. Nd4 Bd7 20. h4 Be7 21. Be2 1/2-1/2, although White still isn't very comfortable in the final position. I also considered just letting the pawn go with 12. Nge2 Bxe3 13. Bxe3 Rxe3 I thought I recalled a high level game where that type of sacrifice had been played in this structure, but haven't been able to find it. 12... Nf4 13. Bf1 dxe4 14. fxe4 Nd5 15. Nf3 I briefly considered 15. h4 hoping to get castled queenside, but after 15... Bf4 it seems that all White has accomplished is to make further holes in his already dicey position. 15... Bf5 16. Bd3 Nb4 17. Qe2 Nxd3+ 18. Qxd3 Bxe4 19. Nxe4

19...f5? more accurate is 19... Qd5 20. Nfxg5 (here 20. Ne5 fails to 20... Rxe5) 20... hxg5 21. O-O and White has insufficient compensation for his pawn. 20. Ne5 fxe4 now 20... Rxe5 loses material to 21. Qb3+ Rd5 22. Nc3 21. Qb3+ Qd5 22. Qxb7 e3 23. Bg3 Rf8? 23... Nd7 24. Qb3 with an ending similar to the game except that Black has gotten his queenside pieces developed.

24. Qb3? After being under pressure for so long, and with my king still stuck in the center, I was quite happy to exchange queens. However, it looks like Black's attack runs out of gas after 24. Rf1 Rxf1+ 25. Kxf1 Qb5+ (25... e2+ 26. Kxe2 Qxg2+ 27. Bf2) 26. Qxb5 cxb5 27. Ke2 and White should soon collect the e-pawn. 24... Rd8 25. Qxd5+ Rxd5 26. Nf3 Bf6 27. Ke2 I think this is best. Rather than try to go through contortions to hold the weak d-pawn, I simply trade it for Black's e-pawn and hope that bishop vs. knight with a better pawn structure and more active king will be enough to win the ending. 27... Bxd4 28. Nxd4 Rxd4 29. Rhd1 c5 30. Kxe3 Nc6 31. Rxd4 Nxd4 32. Kd3 Nf5 33. Bf2 Rd8+ 34. Kc3 Rd5 35. Re1 with the idea Re4-a4 targetting the weakness on a7. 35... Kf7 36. Re4 Nd6 37. Ra4 Ke6 38. Bg3 Nf5 giving up a pawn to try to become active. 38... Nc8 39. Ra6+ also looks difficult for Black 39. Ra6+ Kd7 40. Rxa7+ Kc6 41. Ra6+ Kb5 42. Rg6 Ne3 on 42... Nxg3 my intention was 43. hxg3 (43. Rxg3 is also good for White) 43... Rd7 44. b3 and Black is close to zugzwang 43. Bf4 Nd1+ 44. Kc2 Rd4 45. Bd2 Nf2 45... Nxb2 46. Bc3 46. b3

threatening a4# on 46... c4 47. a4+ Kc5 48. Be3 wins [1:0]

Tim McEntee and the other defending co-champion, Aleks Stamnov, played a very interesting theoretical duel in Morozevich's variation of the Slav Defense. 1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. Nc3 dxc4 5. a4 Bf5 6. Ne5 Nbd7 7. Nxc4 Qc7 8. g3 e5 9. dxe5 Nxe5 10. Bf4 Nfd7 11. Bg2 g5 12. Ne3 Kasparov's move, which has seemed to develop into the main line, but 12. Bxe5 will probably start getting a lot more attention after Jobava's crushing win over Grishchuk in the last Olympiad. 12... gxf4 13. Nxf5 O-O-O 14. Qc2 Nc5 15. O-O Ne6 16. Qe4 fxg3 17. hxg3 a5 18. Nb5

This move was introduced in the game Johannessen-Shirov in last year's Bundesliga, although I'm not sure how familiar either player was of that game. 18... cxb5 19. axb5 Nc5 20. b6 Johannessen played 20. Qe3 here and Shirov struggled to make a draw. Apparently, Alex suggested this move to Tim after the game, which will become relevant later in the tournament. 20... Nxe4 21. bxc7 Kxc7 22. Bxe4 Bb4 and White has a slight edge, but he was not able to convert it to a full point.

In the other games, Burgess-Tennant was a fairly quiet draw, as was Karklins-Loncarevic. Chow-Wallach looked fairly equal out of the opening, but when Wallach avoided a queen exchange in the middlegame, his position became passive, Chow won a pawn and proceeded to grind out an endgame win. After Round 1: Bereolos, Chow 1; Burgess, Karklins, Loncarevic, McEntee, Stamnov, Tennant 0.5; Karagianis, Wallach 0.

9/5/05 - Tennessee Open

Congratulations to Todd Andrews of Nashville for winning the 2005 Tennessee Open held this past weekend in Crossville. This was the first time Todd has won the title outright, although he had split it a couple of times in the past and was Georgia state champion last year when he split time between Atlanta and Nashville.

I think this was the strongest Tennessee Open I have played in. It looked likely that it would be a 4-way race for the title between GM Sam Palatnik, IM Ron Burnett, Andrews, and myself. We were the only 4 masters in the tournament and had accounted for 11 2/3 of the past 12 Tenneseee state championship titles. Only Leonard Dickerson, who was part of a 3-way tie with myself and Todd in 1998 kept it from being a clean 12/12.

However, things got shaken up in Round 2 when Alex King upset Palatnik (who then withdrew) and Burnett was nicked for a draw by Patrick Tae. Todd gave up a draw to North Carolinian John Curcuru in the third round, which left me as the sole leader going into Sunday. However, Burnett beat me in the morning round which meant I would need some help if I was going to get a share of the title for the fourth straight year. I won my last game to finish 4-1 and got some help when another North Carolinian, Chris Mabe, drew with Burnett in the final round. That meant everything hinged on the Board 2 game Andrews-King. In a long ending Todd finally brought home the full point.

Congratualtions also to Corry Marsh of the Knoxville Chess Club. Corry was the only player in any section to post a clean 5-0 score in taking home the Novice title. I don't think he'll repeat this title however, since the nearly 100 rating points he picked up should keep him out of the Novice section forever!

Remarkably, I just checked the US Chess website and this event has already been rated! I guess that's an advantage of having the tournament in the same city as the new location of the national headquarters. I'll post some highlights after I complete my coverage of the Colias Memorial.