Three tie in American Open

Dec. 6, 2009 Position No. 6084: White to play and win. From the game Craig Clawitter-Leigh Hunt, La Palma 2009. Solution to Position No. 6083: White wins the Queen with 1 Nc7+ Kb8 2 Bb5!, as 2 . . .

December 06, 2009|By Jack Peters

Position No. 6084: White to play and win. From the game Craig Clawitter-Leigh Hunt, La Palma 2009.

Solution to Position No. 6083: White wins the Queen with 1 Nc7+ Kb8 2 Bb5!, as 2 . . . Qxe4 leads to mate by 3 Nxa6+! bxa6 4 Bc7+ Kc8 (or 4 . . . Ka7 5 Qb6+ Ka8 6 Qxa6 mate) 5 Bxa6+ Qb7 6 Bxb7+ Kxb7 7 Qb6+.

The 45th annual American Open ended in a three-way tie last Sunday at the Renaissance Hotel in Los Angeles. Two favorites, GM Melikset Khachiyan and IM Andranik Matikozyan, shared first place with 20-year-old Julian Landaw. All scored 6-2 in the 36-player Open section, which included 16 masters.

Landaw, a master since 2006, achieved the greatest success yet in his chess career. He had to take a last-round bye that evening to return to college at UC Berkeley.

The three winners drew among themselves and with IM Vladimir Mezentsev. Khachiyan and Matikozyan defeated state champion IM Enrico Sevillano, who tied for fourth place at 5-3 with Mezentsev, Tatev Abrahamyan and Takashi Iwamoto.

Other sections were won by Jared Tan (under-2200); Fei Yue Yang (under-2000); Zheng Zhu (under-1800); Asatour Dovlatyan (under-1600); Alexander Magganas (under-1400); and Suresh Jhunjhnuwala (unrated).

Organizer Randy Hough described the turnout of 197 players as "rather disappointing." The tournament was one of the country's largest in the 1980s, consistently attracting over 400 entrants.

On the other hand, attendance boomed to 144 players in the American Open Scholastic. Sean Manross (grades K-12); George Situ (grades K-8, on tiebreak over Ezekiel Liu), Kumann Liu (grades K-6); and Eli Minoofar (grades K-3) led their sections.

Masters Robby Adamson, Harutyun Akopyan and Mick Bighamian shared first place with scores of 7 1/2 -2 1/2 in the Quick chess (10-minute games) event, which attracted 33 entrants. Roger Norman won the 22-player Action (30-minute games) tournament with 4 1/2 - 1/2 .

World Cup

The World Cup in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia, has reached the fifth of seven rounds of two-game matches. Only eight quarterfinalists remain from the field of 128 starters. Of the 10 U.S. players, Gata Kamsky of New York, the winner of the 2007 World Cup, lasted longest. He won two matches before losing to 16-year old Philippine grandmaster Wesley So, who also upset pre-tournament favorite Vassily Ivanchuk of Ukraine. Varuzhan Akobian of North Hollywood, Alexander Onischuk of Virginia and Alexander Shabalov of Pennsylvania were eliminated in the second round.

The tournament is scheduled to conclude Dec. 15.

Local news

The Diversity Winter Scholastic Quads will be held next Sunday in the Woman's Club, 324 S. First Ave. in Arcadia. See for details.

Today's games

GM Varuzhan Akobian (USA)-GM Pavel Tregubov (Russia), Game No. 1, World Cup, Khanty-Mansiysk 2009: 1 d4 f5 2 Nc3 Nf6 3 Bg5 Akobian's favorite treatment of the Dutch Defense. d5 4 Bxf6 exf6 5 e3 Be6 6 Bd3 Standard, although Akobian won a brilliancy against Spraggett in 2007 with 6 Qf3 Nc6 7 Bb5. Nc6 7 Nge2 Qd7 8 a3 0-0-0 Premature. Instead, 8 . . . Ne7 plans the maneuver . . . Ne7-c8-d6-e4. 9 Na4 g6 10 b4 Ne5 11 Nc5 Nxd3+ 12 Qxd3 The Bishops will not show their potential, as White will create threats first. Qe8 After 12 . . . Bxc5, both recaptures strongly favor White. 13 a4 Kb8 14 0-0 Bc8 15 Rfb1 h5 16 a5 Rh7 17 c4 Activating his Queen and Knight before the breakthrough. The immediate 17 b5 is promising too. dxc4 18 Qxc4 h4 19 h3 g5 20 b5 Rd6?! Black's last chance is 20 . . . f4!?, when 21 exf4? g4 obtains counterplay and 21 e4 f3 distracts White from his Queenside attack. 21 d5! Decisive. The Knight will enter at d4. Qf7 Now 21 . . . f4 is crushed by 22 e4 f5 23 Nd4 fxe4 24 b6. Or, if Black tries 21 . . . g4, the persuasive sequence 22 b6! cxb6 23 axb6 axb6 24 Nd3 gxh3 25 Nd4 Rg7 26 Nb5, threatening 27 Ra8+, shows White's main idea. 22 Nd4 Qxd5 If 22 . . . Rxd5, White gains the exchange by 23 Na6+! Ka8 24 Nxc7+ Qxc7 25 Qxd5. 23 Na6+! As 23 . . . bxa6 24 Nc6+ Ka8 25 Qxd5 Rxd5 26 bxa6 leads to mate. Ka8 24 Nxc7+ Rxc7 25 Qxc7 White's attack remains unstoppable. Rd8 26 a6 Qd7 Or 26 . . . b6 27 Nc6. 27 axb7+, Black Resigns. The finish would be 27 . . . Bxb7 28 Rxa7+ Kxa7 29 Ra1+.

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