|BIG UPSETS DOMINATE U.S. CHESS CHAMPIONSHIP|
|Written by MonRoi Support on Sun, May 10 2009 (02:41)|
For immediate release:
Saint Louis, May 9, 2009 -- The second day of the U.S. Chess Championship was a repeat of the first, with big upsets and teenagers making the biggest buzz. While it's hardly a surprise that No. 1 ranked Gata Kamsky of Brooklyn, N.Y., is undefeated after round two, it's shocking that one of the two other undefeated players in the 24-competitor championship is Robert Hess, a 17-year-old from New York.
IM Anna Zatonskih, Photogenic as always, Happy Mother's Day! Photo: Betsy Dynako
Hess came into the tournament ranked 37th in the United States. He has defeated grandmasters in both rounds: sixth-ranked Larry Christiansen, of Cambridge, Mass., on Friday, and seventh-ranked Julio Becerra of Miami, Fla., on Saturday.
Other Round 2 winners included Missourian Michael Brooks. The 91st-ranked Brooks, from Kansas City, beat 15th-ranked Alexander Shabalov, a grandmaster from Glendale, Calif. The youngest player in the tournament, Ray Robson, 14, of Largo, Fla., was victorious over the oldest player, 12th-ranked Boris Gulko, of Fairlawn, N.J., who is ranked 12th.
Defending champion Yury Shulman, of Barrington, Ill., the fourth-ranked player, remained unbeaten. But the second-ranked player in the country, Hikaru Nakamura, lost his chance at an undefeated tournament, when he played to a draw with Jaan Ehlvest, of Baltimore, who is ranked 11th.
Any player going undefeated over nine rounds will receive a $64,000 prize named for Bobby Fischer, the only player to accomplish that feat. In all, there is nearly $200,000 of potential prize money available.
The nine-round tournament continues Sunday, May 10th from 2pm-8pm., and will conclude Sunday, May 17.For a live update of tournament play on Twitter, go to www.twitter.com/ccscsl. Results of Saturday's matches are available at www.saintlouischessclub.org. Photos of Round 2 are available at picasaweb.google.com/SaintLouisChessClub/.
The Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis opened in July 2008, and has over 500 members. The club also will host the 2009 U.S. Women's Chess Championship from October 2-12.
Contact: Laura Slay