|All-Army Championship Ends - Congratulations!|
|Written by Andres D Hortillosa on Fri, May 16 2008 (06:36)|
Duke imploded against Drake and lost quickly in 22 moves. He recklessly blundered a pawn and the right to castle on move six, which can only be attributed to a classic case of simple oversight. It got worse on move ten when he allowed a knight fork on e6. The game was totally lost at that point. Duke came very close to making the team in his first try. I am sure he will have many chances in the years to come.
Round 11 Results
King in his game against Macaspac, who is playing remarkably solid chess this entire tournament, held his own as Black. He maintained the balance from the opening to the point where the game was agreed drawn. He showed inventiveness and flair in his other games thus rightly deserving a spot on the team.
West quickly drew with Baniel to take 5th place. Because of his good tie breaks, he overtook King on the wall chart despite scoring the same number of points. West, to his credit, won against King and Duke, his main rivals for the last two places on the team.
The top four players by rating were never in danger of not making the team. Tia’s record survived yet another year. His unblemished record will harldy get assailed again. Macaspac lost a historic opportunity to be enshrined in the history books of this long-running Army tradition.
The team will compete against the Marines, Navy and the Air Force in Tucson, Arizona next month with each service fielding a team of six players. Besides the service championship, the top finisher of each team will take the first four team spots. The remaining two spots will go to the other top placers regardless of service.
In this scheme, any team can possibly (and only) take three spots in the US Armed Forces Chess Team. The upside to this arrangement is that each service will at least be represented. In addition, it also effectively removes the possibility for one service to comprise the team.
The downside is evident as it is possible that players earning a berth on the US Armed Forces Team simply because they are the top scorers of their respective services may actually not even be in the top ten of the wall chart. When this happens, the US Armed Forces Team is not fielding its strongest team based on results.
The format of the tournament is 7-round Swiss but no player will be paired against his teammate. The team will represent the US Armed Forces in this year’s edition of the NATO Chess Championship to be held in Brussels, Belgium. The dates are yet to be announced.