Video Impressions 3 PDF Print E-mail
Tue, May 20 2008 (01:12)

by Zeljka



Round 7 Summary Report by Tom Braunlich PDF Print E-mail
Mon, May 19 2008 (20:31)

Yury Shulman took another big step toward the championship by defeating Julio Becerra to maintain his 1-point lead with only two rounds to go. Shulman was not sitting on his lead by playing safely with black; he instead played into the main line of the Qg4 French Winawer Variation. In the post-mortem Yury said that after 22…Rg4 it is hard for white to find a move. Julio tried a diversion by rushing forward his h-pawn, but before long it was lost. White might have tried 36.Rxc4 intending to fight on with two bishops against two rooks. 39…R1h3 forced mate with some flair.

Chess Player

WFM Tatev Abrahamyan is a student at Cal State in Psychology.


The round was a very combative one, with only one game was drawn (Ippolito-Vigorito).


Kaidanov – Onischuk was another key game this round, a very interesting Two Knights variation in which black played 8…Be7 instead of the more usual 8…Rb8. Before long white had two sets of isolated double pawns and Alex cleverly sacrificed two more pawns to exploit this and threaten penetration with his better developed pieces. Black soon won back these pawns, with interest, helped by the excellent 21…Ne1. In the post mortem it seemed that 27. Nxf5 instead of 27.Ba3 was white’s best chance to hold on.


Defending champ Alex Shabalov has not been having a good tournament. Today his chances for the title were lost with his defeat by Kudrin, whose 21.Qf3 suddenly just won a piece.


Friedel joined the leaders when Gurevich played a sharp line of the Queen’s Indian with 13.Nb5 and Josh shot back with 16…Nxf2 and 17… e5. He was winning after 24…Nxh2!


Akobian also won to stay among those within range of first place by finding the subtle 20…Be5! Perelstheyn beat Yermolinsky who again used an usual line of the Carlsbad QGD. 46. Rh4! set up a mating net with the threat of Rch8. The Fed defeated Ivanov with the same idea of …h5 to safeguard his kingside he used against Shankland. 32…d5 exposed white’s king.


Sergey Galant was doing well against Jesse Kraai until 28…Rxh2? lost a tempo to grab a pawn (the players decided 28…Kd6 was better.) Kaufman beat Shankland in an endgame in which 17…Na6 was called an error by Alan Stein in the commentary room (17…Nce4).


Important events in the Women’s event turned the leader board over. Krush won over Airapetian while Zatonskih was upset by Tuvshintugs in a Caro-Kann modern main line, falling from ½-point ahead to ½-point behind.


Tomorrow’s K-Z matchup will likely determine the champion.

Photo Portraits PDF Print E-mail
Mon, May 19 2008 (17:46)

Chess Player
GM Eugene Perelshteyn is a computer scientists who works for Symantec in Maryland.

Chess Player
GM Julio Becerra lives in Miami, originally from Cuba

Chess Player
GM Dmitry Gurevich won the National Open 6 times.

Chess Player
GM Alex Onischuk has worked with elite players like Karpov and Topalov.

Chess Player
GM Boris Gulko is the only man who has won both the U.S. and USSR Champion titles.

Chess Player
IM David Pruess from California is just one step away from becoming a grandmaster.


Video Impressions 2 PDF Print E-mail
Mon, May 19 2008 (00:53)

by Zeljka



Round 6 Summary Report by Tom Braunlich PDF Print E-mail
Sun, May 18 2008 (18:33)

The two leaders met this round and Yury Shulman took a big step towards the championship by defeating Sergey Kudrin and taking a full point lead over the field as the other top boards ended in draws.

Chess Player
IM Josh Friedel is the current Samford Fellowship Winner


Shulman – Kudrin was a complex Gruenfeld that for awhile looked good for Sergey due to some penetration down the c-file. A repetition was possible but after a long think Yury avoided it. After Kudrin’s …e5 Yury was able to target this pawn and achieve two mobile center pawns to go with his space advantage, leading to a rook endgame win.


Several other games this round were interesting rook endgames. Ippolito – Langer was a theoretical Benoni main line in which Michael had an edge, but Ippolito held the balance in a pawn-down rook endgame and “the result was a fair one” as Dean said after the game.


In Galant – Kaufman, Sergey was pressing for a win but, starting with 24…Kc6! Kaufman put up a stout defense and was able to steer the game into a rook ending that was drawn despite being two pawns down.


The most combative game of the round was Akobian – Ludwig. The game saw the gambit 7. g4 originally developed by Shabalov and Shirov. Var’s 12. Ne4 was I believe unusual and Ludwig played actively to try and catch white’s king in the center. White’s position always seemed to have enough resources however, including the move 27. Rf3! to refute Daniel’s rook sacrifice. Ludwig saw that but had missed the followup 27… Qh5 28. Qd7.


Gurevich sprang out of a cramped position to suddenly win a pawn against Vigorito that he was able to convert.


Kraai-Pruess was an odd game perhaps prompted by the fact that these two friends had driven to the event together from New Mexico. The odd opening 1. Nf3, g6 2. e4, Nf6 perhaps was an attempt by them both to stay away from openings they may have discussed. David unbalanced the position with 11…dxe5 but Jesse managed to keep a slight edge into another rook endgame, which was drawn.


The Fed beat young Shankland in the kind of Sicilian he has played well for decades. His 14…e5 and 21…h5! achieved an edge and left Sam without a safe haven for his king. This made Fedorowicz feel better after yesterday’s debacle.


In the women’s event, Anna Zatonskih edged into the lead by half a point when she defeated Epstein by outplaying her in a fairly even ending.


Meanwhile, in the battle of the Irinas, Krush could only achieve a draw against Zenyuk in a Queen’s Gambit Accepted that led directly to an endgame with the symmetrical pawn structure.


Battsetseg ruined Jamison’s hopes of getting on the scoreboard with a nice opposite bishops attack that lasted even with the queen’s off. 59…g4 broke through.


Rohonyan won the exchange with 24. Ba3 but …e4 and …Qe5 gave tactics that turned the game for Abrahamyan, who now moves into third place with 4/6.


Airapetian seemed to be developing an attack in a Ruy Lopez, but Tuvshintugs was able to push it back and exchange into a winning endgame.





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And for the chess-player the success which crowns his work, the great dispeller of sorrows, is named "combination."

-Emanuel Lasker (1868-1941)

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