Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Destiny Top Blitz 4-0

What a match!

Hope I can provide a better recap later this week. For now, here are some photos courtesy of Dujiu Yang (Darwin's father).

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Dallas Loses to San Francisco, 3-1

Bercys just resigned. Difficult match. Thanks for those who stayed up to follow this! We'll be sure to give a recap sometime this week.

Adarsh Goes Down

Adarsh just resigned against NM Liou. Tough game. It seemed like White had a slight pull out of the opening, but Liou counterattacked nicely. After some exchanges, Adarsh just couldn't deal with Black's Q+R+N activity.

2-1 San Francisco. We need Bercys to swing for the fences against Shankland.

A Shout Out

I'd like to take this opportunity to congratulate former Dallas Destiny player FM Andrei Zaremba for his stellar play in the first two weeks for Queens.

Despite years of irrelevant philosophizing, online poker, and womanizing, he still manages to play a decent game of chess. Congrats, Drei.

Board 1

Not looking good for Marko on board 1. This is like deja-vu from last year's finals: a 2...e6 gone badly awry for Zivanic. Friedel is in his element in these king-hunts just like GM Larry Christiansen.

UPDATE: Marko lost. That was total annihilation, sheesh. Score stands at 1-1. Surprising blowouts and blunders on the top couple boards.


GM Jesse Kraai blundered a piece against IM Daniel Ludwig!


It appears that Kraai missed the simple double-attack 16.Qg3

UPDATE: ...and Kraai has resigned. We'll take it! 1-0 Dallas.

A Few Pics

Sorry they're so blurry...yes, I have a cheap camera.

SanFranMatch 001
Sal Bercys
SanFranMatch 002
Daniel Ludwig
SanFranMatch 003
Adarsh Jayakumar (left) and Sal Bercys (right)
SanFranMatch 004
Daniel Ludwig once more

Live Blogging: Dallas vs. San Francisco, Week 2

We are up and running, with only Marko Zivanic experiencing some technical difficulties with his computer. He has a degree in Computer Science though, so I think he'll be fine.

Games look normal to start...I'm going to try and upload some pictures if my camera cooperates.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Tonight: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Blog

Recently I read this amusing post by Seattle's HA81. Though obviously written tongue-in-cheek, the author describes the Dallas Destiny blog as "the most boring blog" in the league.

You know what? HA81 is right. We need to spice things up around here. Seriously. If I strictly write match reports for the rest of the season I think I'm going to lose it. GM Joel touched on this subject in his CLO article here.

I'm going to draw on Sublime for inspiration. Here's "What I Got" for tonight:

Early in the evening, log on ICC
Head over to Starbucks and order a Chai Tea
Got to find a reason, a reason our blog blows
Got to find a reason for our readership woes
I got this 'net connection, and I can still make posts
I can rock for Dallas like I'm Hall and freakin' Oates

So there you have it. My pledge to you, dear reader, for a better and more interesting blog. Tomorrow I'll be liveblogging our match against San Francisco and hope to deliver some hall-of-fame worthy updates.

It's a start, right?

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Week 1: Dallas Falls to Miami 3-1

So we got killed this week.

It wasn't exactly a violent death-by-chainsaw-in-bathub style killing a la Scarface (Miami connection? I tried), but it was still a good, old-fashioned thrashing. The Sharks always field a dangerous team that has the potential to beat virtually anyone. Not the most ideal way to start our 2009 campaign, but after so much success the past two seasons we have to learn to take our lumps.

Let's start with the good and move towards the bad:

Nelson, who graciously filled in for Bayaraa this week, played a nice game on board 4. He responded to the Winawer with an unusual sideline (4.Qd3!?) that garnered him some nice pressure right from the get-go. It seemed that Nelson was always in control as he guided the game into a superior N vs. B ending that culminated with a thematic pawn break:

1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. Qd3 dxe4 5. Qxe4 Nf6 6. Qh4 Nc6 7. Nf3 Ne7 8. Bd3 Nf5 9. Bxf5 exf5 10. Bg5 Be6 11. O-O Be7 12. Rad1 c6 13. Rfe1 O-O 14. Ne2 Re8 15. Nf4 Ne4 16. Bxe7 Qxe7 17. Qxe7 Rxe7 18. Nd2 Nxd2 19. Rxd2 Rae8 20. Rde2 Kf8 21. b3 g5 22. Nd3 Bd5 23. Rxe7 Rxe7 24. Rxe7 Kxe7 25. f3 b5 26. Kf2 Kd6 27.a3 f6 28.Nc5 h5 29. Ke3 f4+ 30. Kd3 f5 31. c4 Bf7 32. Kc3 bxc4 33. bxc4 Bg8 34. Nd3 Be6 35. Kb4 Bg8

Align Center
White to move

36. h4! gxh4 37. Nxf4 Bf7 38. Nd3 Be6 39. f4 Bg8 40. Ne5 Be6 41. Nf3 Bc8 42. Nxh4 Be6 43. g3 Bd7 44. Nf3 Be6 45. Ne5 Bg8 46. Ka5 Bxc4 47. Nxc4+ Kd5 48. Ne5 Kxd4 49. Nxc6+ Ke3 50. Ne7 Kf3 51. Nxf5 Kg4 52. Ng7 Black Resigns 1-0

Board 3 was a roller-coaster. Keaton built up a big time advantage early on, but made a horrendous blunder on move 20. A piece down, he fought on and almost succeeded in turning the game around in Rodriguez's time pressure. Analysis shows that 49...Rh1! would have given Black the draw.

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 d6 5. Bg5 h6 6. Be3 c5 7. dxc5 Qa5 8. Qd2 dxc5 9. O-O-O Nc6 10. Nd5 Qxd2+ 11. Rxd2 Nxd5 12. cxd5 Nd4 13. Nf3 Nxf3 14. gxf3 b6 15. Bb5+ Bd7 16. Bxd7+ Kxd7 17. f4 Kc7 18. Rg1 Rhg8 19. f3 Rad8 20. f5!

20...gxf5?? 21. Rdg2 fxe4 22. fxe4 Bxb2+ 23. Kxb2 Rxg2+ 24. Rxg2 f5 25. exf5 Rxd5 26. Bxh6 Rxf5 27. Bg5 Rf3 28. h4 Rh3 29. Bxe7 Kc6 30. Rd2 c4 31. Kc2 Re3 32. Bg5 Rh3 33. Re2 b5 34. Re3 Rh2+ 35. Kc3 Rxa2 36. h5 Rh2 37. h6 Rh5 38. Bf4 Rh4 39. Re6+ Kd5 40. Re5+ Kc6 41. Rf5 a5 42. Kd4 a4 43. Rf6+ Kd7 44. Kd5 c3 45. Rd6+ Ke8 46. Be3 b4 47. Rc6 a3 48. Bg5 a2 49. Ra6 Rh2? Here Keaton had a surprising resource in 49...Rh1! (diagram). The idea is to gain a tempo to advance the b-pawn. A sample line goes 50. Rxa2 (50.h7 Kf7! 51.Kc4 Rxh7 52.Rxa2 is probably White's best, hoping for an eventual R+B vs. R scenario) b3 51. Ra8+ Kf7 52. Rb8 b2 53. Kd4 b1=Q 54. Rxb1 Rxb1 55. Kxc3 with an obvious draw.

Position after 49...Rh1! (analysis)

50. Ke6 Re2+ 51. Kf6 b3 52. h7 Rh2 53. h8=Q+ Rxh8 54. Ke6 Rh6+ 55. Bxh6 Kd8 56. Bf4 a1=Q 57. Rxa1 Kc8 58. Ra3 Black Resigns 1-0

New UTD student IM Daniel Ludwig made his debut on board 2 against FM Bruci Lopez. Daniel is known for his opening preparation, and he seemed quite comfortable on the White side of this Saemisch KID:

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 d6 5. f3 O-O 6. Nge2 Nbd7 7. Be3 c5 8. Qd2 Qa5 9. d5 a6 10. Nc1 Rb8 11. Nb3 Qb4 12. Qc2 Ne5 13. a3 Qb6 14. Be2 e6 15. O-O exd5 16. cxd5 Qc7 17. a4 Bd7 18. h3 b5 19. Nd2 Rfe8 20. Rfe1 b4 21. Nd1 Bc8 22. Rc1 Ned7 23. b3 Nh5 24. Nc4 Ne5 25. f4 Nxc4 26. Qxc4 Ng3 27. Bf3 h5 28. Nf2 Bc3 29. Red1 Nf5 30. exf5 Rxe3 31. fxg6 fxg6 32. Ne4 Bxh3 33. Kf2 Rxf3+ 34. gxf3 Qe7 35. Kg3 Bf5 36. Nxc3 bxc3 37. Re1 h4+ 38. Kf2 Qh7 39. Qxc3 Rf8 40. Qe3 Qh6 41. Rh1 Bd7 42. Rc4 Qh8 43. Qd2 Qh5 44. Re4 h3 45. Kg3 g5 46. Rg1 Bf5 47. Ree1 Bg6 48. Kh2 Rxf4 49. Re8+ Kg7 Daniel has won the exchange and appears to be reeling in the point. 50. Qc3+ Rd4 51. Re6! followed by 52. Rxd6 is more than sufficient. Round about here, though, his wireless connection went out and we had to scramble for a new laptop. Daniel said afterwards that this really rattled him - especially since Lopez was in terrible time pressure.

White to move

50. Re3? Rd4! Now Black has serious counterplay 51. Re7+ Kh6 52. Qe3 Rd3 53. Qe1? (53.Qe2) Qxf3 54. Rg3 Qxd5 55. Ree3 Rd2+ 56. Re2 Rd3 57. Rxd3 Qxd3 58. Re3 Qc2+ 59. Kxh3 d5 60. Kg3 Be4 61. Qf1 Kg7 62. Kg4 Qh2 63. Rh3 Qe5 64. Rg3 c4 65. bxc4 Kg6 66. Kh3 Qh8+ White Resigns 0-1

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 d6 8. c3 O-O 9. d4 The Yates variation. Bg4 10. d5 Na5 11. Bc2 c6 12. h3 Bc8 13. dxc6 Qc7 14. Nbd2 Qxc6 15. Nf1 Nc4 16. Ng3 Re8 Interestingly, former Dallas Destiny member GM Magesh Panchanathan played Becerra in this very same line back in 2005. That game continued 16...g6 17. a4 Re8 18. b3 Nb6 and was drawn on move 58. 17. a4 Bb7 18. Nf5 Bf8 So far, so good. Julio is a huge expert in the Spanish, but I was aware of the theory up until this point. 19. Bg5!? A surprise. I thought this was a novelty at first, but apparently it has been played by Judit Polgar against Kamsky in a rapid event in 1992 and was first tried in a game from Moscow in 1989. This continuation looks promising for White. d5 Rybka initially loves to grab the b-pawn but then it starts to appreciate White's attack after 19...Nxb2 20. Qc1 Nxa4 21. Bxf6 gxf6 22.Nh6+ += 20. axb5 The Polgar-Kamsky game continued with 20. exd5, but that is definitely weaker. axb5 21. Rxa8 Bxa8 22. Bxf6 Qxf6 23. exd5 I spent some 20 minutes trying to find an acceptable continuation for Black here. The notes to the Polgar-Kamsky game say "23...g6=" but I can't see how Black can claim equality after 24. Ne3 Nxe3 25. Rxe3. My solution wasn't great, but it gave me chances: Rd8 24. b3 Nb6 25. c4! Awesome move that I completely missed.

Position after 25. c4!

25...bxc4 26. bxc4 Bb4 My only chance. The pawn is taboo because 26...Nxc4 27. Qd3 threatens 28. Ne7+ and 28. Qxc4 27. Rxe5?! Here I started to see a glimmer of hope Nxc4 28. Re4 Bxd5 29. Rd4 Nb2! (Forced, but good) 30. Qc1 Bc3 31. Rg4 The critical moment of the game.

Black to move

My pieces are kinda awkward, but Black is holding. Here 31...g6! should equalize cleanly. In my time pressure though I started seeing ghosts. The only thing I could focus on was getting mated with Qh6 and Ng5 looming. 31...Be6? Panic. 32. Rxg7+ Kh8 33. Rg5 Bxf5 34. Rxf5 Qxf5 35. Bxf5 Rd1+ 36. Qxd1 Nxd1 37. Bc2 Nb2 38. Ng5 f6 39. Ne4 I thought 39. Nxh7 was winning much easier. Be5 40. g3 Kg7 41. f4 Bd4+ 42. Kg2 Nc4 43. Bb3 Ne3+ 44. Kf3 Nf5 45. Be6 Ne7 46.g4 Ng6 47. Nd6 Bc3 48. Nf5+ Kf8 49. Ne3 Kg7 50. Nd5 Bd2 51. Ke4 Bc1 Black might have some outside chances to hold this ending, but it's a longshot. 52. Bf5 Bd2 53. Bxg6 hxg6 54. f5 g5 55. Kd4 Kf7 56. Kc5 Be1 57. Kd6 Bg3+ 58. Kd7 Be1 59. Nc7 Bd2 60. Nb5 Bf4 61. Nd6+ Kf8 62. Ke6 Be5 63. Ne4 Kg7 64. Nxg5 Black Resigns 0-1

We have another tough match against San Francisco next week. Hopefully we'll be able to right the ship and I can report on a Dallas victory.

-Johnny B, manager