09 June 2008


Written by 

 Hi everyone! This is Ray Robson from Las Vegas. I have just finished playing in the National Open, and I will be going home soon. In the end I finished with a good 4.5/6. Here is a short recap of my games:

Round 1 black vs. Gutman. In the first round I was black against an Expert. I was able to quickly seize the initiative and finished the game with an exchange sacrifice to open up my opponent’s king. Round 2 white vs. Sandager. My opponent offered to play the Marshall Attack in the Ruy Lopez, but instead I made it an Anti-Marshall. I thought a long time about playing the sacrifice 17.Bxf7+, but in the end I decided not to. Instead I played a different sacrifice with 17.Re3 and 18.Rg3. I am not sure if this sacrifice is completely correct, but after his move 18…Nbd4 I think the next moves were forced. I was able to get 5 pawns for a piece and won the game by eventually pushing my pawns forward.

Next, I had three games against grandmasters. Round 3 black vs. Akobian. I had played Akobian three times before this game and had lost them all. In this game we played the Shirov/Shabalov gambit in the Semi-Slav. I think I was just trying to get equal chances the whole game, and I eventually did. At move 24 my opponent offered a draw in an approximately equal rook endgame, and I accepted. Round 4 white vs. Yermolinsky. I had played Yermolinsky in only one game before, which was in the U.S. Championship Qualifier in Tulsa. In that game I had lost badly as white in a Ruy Lopez. We played another Lopez, but Yermolinsky played a different variation (5…Bc5 instead of Be7). Perhaps I could have gotten a slight edge in the opening but I didn’t see how to. My opponent found the strong plan with Kh8 and Ng8 to prepare f5. Although the position may still be about equal, I didn’t like it from my side of the board. Therefore, I offered a draw, which my opponent accepted. Round 5 black vs. Erenburg. The pairings were up early for this round, so I was able to prepare a little bit. We played a Rauzer and followed my preparation until move 21. My opponent thought a long time and played Qh4 followed by Qf6, trying to penetrate into my king’s position and threatening Bh6. Fortunately, I have the exchange sacrifice that I played, after which I think our next moves were pretty much forced and the game was a draw. By the way, if 24. Bh6 I have Qxc2+! 25. Kxc2 Be4+ 26.Kb1 Rxd1++.


Round 6 white vs. Brigljevic. I didn’t play the opening too well in this last round game, and I think my opponent had good chances. However, he let me slowly improve my position. My opponent’s position was still solid, so it wasn’t clear if I could break through. Eventually I was able to win a pawn right before time control and then another one in my opponent’s time-trouble. My opponent sacrificed his bishop, perhaps thinking I couldn’t take it. However, everything was covered, and I won in a few moves. I was glad to end the tournament with a win.


This is my first blog, and I’m still learning how to use the tools. Until I can get my games posted, you can always refer to the MonRoi site to see the games discussed above.


Ray Robson

Read 277 times
Rate this item
(0 votes)


Chess Quotes

When you see a good move, look for a better one.

Emanuel Lasker
Send us Your Chess Quote