Wednesday, May 31, 2006


Texas Amateur Championships - Final 2 Rounds

The 7 round Texas Amateur tournament over Memorial Day Weekend wrapped up Monday. IT was held simulatenously with the Texas Championship for those U2000. After taking a first round bye, I won two games on the first day, got a win a draw on the second day, and a win and a final draw on the final day. I finished with 5.5/7 and a final place of 3rd equal out of 118 participants, 30 of whom were class A players. Not too shabby. I played both the #1 seed (draw) and the #3 seed (win). My rating went up 19 points to an all-time high of 1951 and had a tournament performance of 2118. I've already posted the first game in a previous post and below I have the final day. (I will add the middle three games soon.)

Going into the final day, I had 4 points and one person had 4.5. The morning game was a tough one. My opponent was a strong 1950 and 3rd seat in the tournament, who has spent a lot of time over 2000. During the endgame, I constantly thought it would draw and the I thought I had a win, but would find a draw for him, then back to the win. He blew about 3 chances for a draw during the endgame. I think the endgame is my strong suit, so perhaps that's why I kept seeing draws for him. The game took 4.5 hours to play leaving me quite drained by the end.

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1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. e5 c5 5. Bd2 Ne7 6. Nb5 Bxd2 7. Qxd2 O-O 8. f4 cxd4 9. Nf3 Nbc6 10. Nbxd4 Nxd4 11. Nxd4 Nc6 12. c3 f6 13. Nf3 fxe5 14. fxe5 Qc7 15. Qe3 Bd7 16. Bd3 Ne7 17. O-O Qb6 18. Qxb6 axb6 19. a3 h6 20. Rae1 Nc6 21. g3 Be8 22. Nd4 Rxf1 23. Bxf1 Nxd4 24. cxd4 Rc8 25. Bd3 Ba4 26. Kf2 Rc6 27. Ke3 Bb3 28. Kd2 Bc4 29. Rc1 Bxd3 30. Rxc6 bxc6 31. Kxd3 Kf7 32. a4 Ke7 33. b4 Kd7 34. Kc3 Kc7 35. a5 Kb7 36. Kb3 Ka6 37. Ka4 Kb7 38. b5 cxb5 39. Kxb5 bxa5 40. Kxa5 Kc6 41. g4 g6 42. h4 g5 43. hxg5 hxg5 44. Ka6 Kc7 45. Ka7 Kc6 46. Kb8 Kb5 47. Kc7 Kc4 48. Kd6 Kxd4 49. Kxe6 Kc4 50. Kf6 d4 51. e6 d3 52. e7 d2 53. e8=Q d1=Q 54. Qc6+ Kb4 55. Qe4+ Kb3 56. Qe6+ Kb4 57. Kxg5 Qd8+ 58. Kg6 Qd3+ 59. Qf5 Qd6+ 60. Kg5 Qd8+ 61. Kf4 Qd2 62. Kg3 Qe1+ 63. Qf2 Qc3+ 64. Qf3 Qe1+ 65. Kh3 Qe8 66. g5 Qh8+ 67. Kg4 Qc8+ 68. Qf5 Qa8 69. g6 Qg2 70. Kh5 Qh2+ 71. Kg5 Qe2 72. Qg4+ 1-0

On to the afternoon, still a half point behind the leader with one game to go, I was black. However, my teenaged opponent played a very drawish line and there was nothing I could really do about it. I was surprised he went for such a line. Perhaps I'll need to develop a fighting line as black that cannot as easily be avoided. It's such a slow and boring game that I will only post the final position and the pgn. It's very similar to my other draw in the 5th round, but even more drawish. His knight will go to c5 and it's way too risky to try for a break on e5. So we agree to our Grandmaster draw. In a small way, I was happy because I was quite drained from all the games, especially the morning game, which finished about 40 minutes before this game started.

1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Nf3 a6 5. cxd5 cxd5 6. h3 Nc6 7. Bf4 Bf5 8. a3 e6 9. e3 Bd6 10. Bxd6 Qxd6 11. Bd3 Bxd3 12. Qxd3 O-O 13. O-O b5 14. b4 Rfc8 15. Rfc1 Rc7 16. Rc2 Rac8 17. Rac1 Nd7 18. Nd2 Nb6 19. Nb3 Nc4 20. Nb1 Nb8

Nice game!
Congrats, Christopher. How close will you now be to 2000?
I'm at 1951
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