Monday, June 26, 2006

Candidates Results

I can't say the tournament went horribly, but the finish wasn't great. I beat the 2nd lowest player in the field in round one fairly routinely. In round 2 I played my good friend NM Eugene Yanayt and after I equalized as black he decided he'd had it for the day so he offered a draw and we both got to end early. In round 3 I played for the fourth time (all as white) a strong expert Craig Clawitter. In the first 3 games there had been, a dragon, a hippo, and a french. The first one I was winning I messed up and drew, the second game I didn't really get anything and the position got kind of locked up and we drew. In the third game I beat him to qualify for the state championship candidates last year (which I couldn't play in). In this game, he decided to go back to the dragon, but since then I had switched from the 9. Bc4 lines to the 9. 0-0-0 lines against the dragon. He followed with Bd7 which is played, but isn't as good against 9. 0-0-0 so I quick got a huge initiative. He wisely sacked a pawn to keep his play alive, but eventually I got a big attack and that pawn became a powerful passed pawn and in the end I managed to display some tricks to simplify and be left with a promoting pawn which was easy to mop up. In the last round, I was willing to take a draw if I got nothing from the opening (although I realized I might have missed out on qualifying by tiebreaks had this happened, but I couldn't play in the championships anyways, I'm in Hawaii at that time). So in round 4 I played strong expert (although probably now master after this result) Francis Chen and that game was an absolute disaster. I was moving a little too fast in the opening and played a slight inaccuracy that allowed him to completely equalize with maybe even a slightly better position. So I played a move which I thought allowed him to liquidate and offered a draw which I was pretty sure he would be fine with. This is true, but this move carelessly blundered a piece so he decided to take the piece instead. Quite embarassing, but still a good overall result for the tournament.

Rating Change: 2138->2145

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