COMMENTARY BY GREG SHAHADE
NY MASTER ACTION
JUNE 25 2002
(TOURNAMENT NOT BEING HELD NEXT WEEK BECAUSE OF THE WORLD OPEN, WILL RESUME JULY 9TH)
Once again the attendance record was broken, as we had 32 players. We had 7 GM’s show up and 1 GM – elect (Boris Kreiman). We even had to play one game each round in the little side room, as only 15 boards fit in the main room. We had two new grandmasters come to play this week. Our top seed was Ildar Ibragimov, a GM from Kazakhstan who now lives in Connecticut. The other new GM was the famous author of “Seven Deadly Chess Sins” and “Understanding the Grunfeld”, the Scottish Jonathan Rowson. Other first timers included IM Igor Shliperman, IM Jayson Gonzalez, NM Mikhail Belorusov and FM Sunil Weeramantry. Below was the field.
1. GM Ildar Ibragimov
2. GM Igor Novikov
3. GM Leonid Yudasin
4. GM Pavel Blatny
5. GM Roland Schmaltz
6. GM Jonathan Rowson
7. IM Greg Shahade
8. IM Boris Kreiman
9. GM Maurice Ashley
10. IM Igor Shliperman
11. IM Dean Ippolito
12. FM Yuri Lapshun
13. FM Ricardo D’Arruda
14. IM Justin Sarkar
15. NM Evgeny Gershov
16. FM David Pruess
17. IM Jayson Gonzalez
18. WIM Jenn Shahade
19. IM Jay Bonin
20. FM Alan Stein
21. NM Samson Benen
22. FM Lewis Eisen
23. NM Mikhail Belorusov
24. FM Ron Young
25. FM Boris Privman
26. FM David Koenig
27. NM Peter Aravena
28. NM Yefim Treger
29. FM Sunil Weeramantry (Round 1 bye)
30. NM Doug Pader
31. NM Rafal Furdzik
32. NM Adam Robinson
33. Qualifier – Brennan Ward
1st - $460
2nd - $220
3rd - $100
U2400 - $160
In the first round you saw 2 IMs and a US Womens Champion paired up! There were a few upsets and some almost upsets in the first round. Jenn Shahade was up a piece against Novikov and was surely winning at some moment, but Novikov has won in the first round in all 15 events and Jenns time situation allowed him to keep this streak alive, after he found some swindles. My recent first round troubles continued as I was very lucky to draw against Mikhail Belorusov. Belorusov lives in Philadelphia but had some business in NY tonight, so it was nice to see him show up to play. Boris Privman got off to a good start by holding GM Maurice Ashley to a draw. The biggest upset however was David Koenig knocking off IM Dean Ippolito. Koenig has had some rough luck in these events so far, but this time was able to convert his big opening advantage.
1 Ibragimov - Shliperman
2 Lapshun - Novikov
3 Yudasin - Sarkar
4 D’Arruda - Blatny
5 Schmaltz - Pruess
6 Gershov – Rowson
7 Koenig - Kreiman
BOARD 1 Ibragimov – Shliperman
The top seed had some difficulty this round, but Shliperman is a very experienced player and has had very solid results against GM’s in the past. Ibragimov had an attack but it eventually fizzled out into a rook endgame which was eventually drawn, thus putting Novikov back into his usual “top seed” position.
BOARD 2 Lapshun – Novikov
Novikov would be the new top seed if he could beat Lapshun and he must have been optimistic as he has good results against Yuri as of late. However this time things were not so simple, and Yuri agreed to a draw in an endgame which could have been better for him as his two bishops were very formidable.
BOARD 3 Sarkar – Yudasin
Sarkar always has problems with Yudasin and this week things were no different. Sarkar had to give up the exchange and Yudasin put things away quite promptly after this.
BOARD 4 D’Arruda – Blatny
Coming off of a 1-3 score from the previous week, I’m sure Blatny wanted to win this game and get off to a great 2-0 start. He got it down to an endgame up some pawns and thus pulled it off.
BOARD 5 Schmaltz – Pruess
It’s quite funny to see Roland Schmaltz as the 5th seed, considering how he tends to dominate these events every time he plays. Sometimes the ratings of foreign players do not accurately represent their strengths. Pruess played his usual French defense against Schmaltz and it became a Classical French. Schmaltz played the new move a3, which was recently essayed in the famous game Luther – Volkov. This move caused Pruess some serious problems, and Schmaltz continued his torrid pace with another victory.
BOARD 6 Gershov – Rowson
The Scottish GM, who will be moving to the US this fall to attend Harvard University, got off to a good start by beating Gershov to jump to 2-0.
BOARD 7 Koenig – Kreiman
Koenig played his favorite Closed Sicilian and got quite a good position. He probably had great chances to win but Kreiman moves very very quickly sometimes and it can be quite difficult to handle such a pace. In the end Koenig couldn’t handle it and GM – elect Kreiman moved to 2-0.
Leaders after Round 2
2 pts – Yudasin, Schmaltz, Blatny, Rowson, Kreiman
1.5 pts – Ibragimov, Novikov, Ashley, G.Shahade, Shliperman, Lapshun
1 Rowson - Yudasin
2 Blatny - Schmaltz
3 Kreiman - Ibragimov
4 Novikov – Ashley
5 Shliperman – G.Shahade
6 Ippolito - Lapshun
BOARD 1 Rowson – Yudasin
This GM vs GM duel was definitely the most exciting game of the round. It was a 6.Bg5 Qc7 Najdorf Sicilian, and black allowed Bxf6 gxf6. Eventually both sides started to attack and white planned a variation involving the move Nxf7and it was around move 30 at this point, and Rowson cannot be blamed for missing blacks cool response to the knight sitting on f7. Yudasin created a sensation in the playing hall as he simply castled, through the knight on f7 and with this move achieved a completely won position as whites attack was now finished and blacks attack had just began. Sometimes it is hard to consider castling as a legal option in such situations with a piece so close to the king and also so late in the game. This victory moved Yudasin up to 3-0
BOARD 2 Blatny – Schmaltz
Could Schmaltz keep winning? This time with black against a GM things didn’t look so easy as Blatny played 1.f4 (You know it’s a funny tournament when 2 different GMs play 1.f4 at some point during the event), and queens were traded very early, around move 6 or 7. It seemed to be quite equal, but Schmaltz outplayed the Czech GM and also moved faster. In the end Schmaltz scored the victory and moved to his usual 3-0 score.
BOARD 3 Kreiman – Ibragimov
In another exciting game, Kreiman seemed to have the advantage at some point, but Ibragimov is very cagey and eventually got to an endgame with Rook and Bishop versus Rook. As we know this is supposed to be a draw, but it seems as though its virtually impossible to draw such a position in game 30. Last week Sarkar beat Koenig in this endgame. The time delay clock was activated but it was not enough to save Kreiman as eventually he fell into one of the many pitfalls. Ibragimov was now back into things with 2.5/3
BOARD 4 Novikov – Ashley
Strangely enough, despite Novikov’s impressive scores in the NY Masters, he had yet to defeat a GM in the event. Maybe this would be his chance as he was definitely going to go for blood. The opening was a Queens Indian, and things looked quite complicated, but Novikov found a way to beat Ashley and move to 2.5/3
BOARD 5 Shliperman – G.Shahade
Both players needed a win this game to stay in the running for the top prizes. What ensued was one of the most boring chess games in the history of chess, as basically nothing happened in a quiet Sicilian line for 30 moves and the game was agreed drawn, thus knocking both players out of serious contention.
BOARD 6 Ippolito – Lapshun
Lapshun had 1.5/2 and Ippolito had 1 point going into this game. Ippolito has had good results against Lapshun in the past, and this trend continued today as he got a good opening and won 2 pawns. He took it to an endgame with rook, bishop and 6 pawns. versus rook, knight and 4 pawns. Deans technique was of course enough to win this position.
In other action, Koenig continued his strong tournament by beating Phillipenes IM Jayson Gonzalez to move to 2-1.
Leaders after Round 3
3 pts – Yudasin, Schmaltz
2.5 pts – Ibragimov, Novikov
2 pts – Blatny, G.Shahade, Kreiman, Rowson, Ippolito, Pruess, Bonin, Shliperman, Koenig
1 Yudasin - Schmaltz
2 Ibragimov - Novikov
3 Shliperman - Blatny
4 Rowson - Ippolito
5 G.Shahade – Pruess
6 Bonin – Kreiman
7 Ashley - Koenig
BOARD 1 Yudasin – Schmaltz
Yudasin has an 0-2 score against Schmaltz in the NY Masters. The big question was whether he would try to even the score a little bit, or would he accept a draw with the white pieces and take a guaranteed payday. He offered the quick draw and Roland accepted, ensuring both players of a tie for first and no less than $270 each. If Novikov – Ibragimov ended in a draw they would each get $340, otherwise all three would get $270.
BOARD 2 Ibragimov - Novikov
These guys came out slugging as they needed a win to tie for first and get some serious money. Ildar played the Larsen-Bird attack with 1.f4 followed by b3 and Bb2. Ibragimov seemed to have a good position but Novikov hit him with a really nasty trick, and Ildar’s position quickly went south. He found some ways to prolong the game, by sacrificing an exchange, but in the end it was the all time NY Masters money leader, Igor Novikov, winning the game and joining the 2nd and 3rd placers on the all time money list, Yudasin and Schmaltz in a 3 way tie for first and $270 a piece.
Important Stat - (Final score of 1.f4 in the 15th NY Masters---- 0/2)
BOARD 3 Shliperman – Blatny
Blatny got an endgame with an extra pawn, yet Shliperman had a bishop and Blatny had a knight. It seemed as if Blatny would somehow convert his extra pawn, yet Igor’s bishop was enough to hold and earn him the draw.
BOARD 4 Rowson - Ippolito
Ippolito can be very dangerous with the black pieces sometimes, and he showed why against Rowson. Right out of the opening, his theoretical knowledge earned him a winning position. Dean had an extra pawn in the endgame and was about to notch a second pawn when Rowson resigned and called it a day.
BOARD 5 G.Shahade – Pruess
A win for Pruess would guarantee him a share of the U2400 prize, so he was going to go all out. I repeated the variation against the French that I used to “beat” Pruess last time. Of course this victory wasn’t due to the opening as I was completely lost and simply got lucky in his time trouble. Once again I achieved nothing out of the opening and quickly got a worse position, in exchange for a few minutes on the clock. Pruess couldn’t find a way to break through my defenses and eventually, with Pruess having 20 seconds left yet with time delay activated, we agreed to a draw.
BOARD 6 – Bonin – Kreiman
Bonin also needed a win to notch the U2400 prize, and seemed to get a very good opening. I thought he had some great attacking chances, but they quickly fizzled away, when he hesitated in sacrificing a pawn. In the end Kreiman got two rooks and a bishop for the queen, and this was enough for him.
BOARD 7 – Ashley – Koenig
Koenig also needed to win or draw to get into the U2400 money, yet having black against GM Ashley is not the most opportune situation. Koenig had had a good tournament thus far with wins over 2 IM’s, yet the run stopped here as Maurice won.
With his draw against me and a 2.5/1.5 David Pruess got a piece of the U2400 money, as no U2400 players were able to score 3-1. Two other players joined him at 2.5. One of them was Doug Pader, who knocked off Gershov in the last round to get on the moneyboard with $55 a piece. Also winning and tying for the prize was our man from Philly, Mikhail Belorusov, who scored a win over IM Justin Sarkar. Once again the tournament is NOT going to be held next week, as everyone will be at the World Open. We plan to hand out fliers in Philadelphia, and also the event will FINALLY be advertised in next months Chess Life, although it’s possible that everyone knows about the event anyway. See most of you in Philly!
15th New York Masters Action USA (USA), 25 vi 2002
1 2 3 4 Total
1. Novikov, Igor g 2692 +23 =11 + 9 + 6 3.5 ($260)
2. Yudasin, Leonid g 2665 +18 +21 +15 = 3 3.5 ($260)
3. Schmaltz, Roland g 2586 +24 +12 + 7 = 2 3.5 ($260)
4. Kreiman, Boris m 2569 +28 +19 - 6 +18 3.0
5. Ippolito, Dean m 2460 -19 +30 +11 +15 3.0
6. Ibragimov, Ildar g 2683 +17 =10 + 4 - 1 2.5
7. Blatny, Pavel g 2603 +26 +16 - 3 =10 2.5
8. Shahade, Greg m 2534 =13 +25 =10 =12 2.5
9. Ashley, Maurice g 2543 =25 +13 - 1 +19 2.5
10. Shliperman, Igor m 2510 +29 = 6 = 8 = 7 2.5
11. Lapshun, Yury f 2459 +20 = 1 - 5 +23 2.5
12. Pruess, David f 2403 +33 - 3 +27 = 8 2.5 ($55)
13. Belorusov, Mike 2282 = 8 - 9 +30 +21 2.5 ($55)
14. Pader, Douglas 2200 -16 =26 +29 +22 2.5 ($55)
15. Rowson, Jonathan g 2577 +27 +22 - 2 - 5 2.0
16. D'Arruda, Ricardo f 2387 +14 - 7 -18 +24 2.0
17. Gonzales, Jayson m 2381 - 6 +29 -19 +27 2.0
18. Bonin, Jay m 2383 - 2 +31 +16 - 4 2.0
19. Koenig, David f 2250 + 5 - 4 +17 - 9 2.0
20. Treger, Effim 2216 -11 -23 +33 +26 2.0
21. Sarkar, Justin m 2402 +30 - 2 =23 -13 1.5
22. Gershov, Evgeny 2377 +32 -15 =24 -14 1.5
23. Shahade, Jenn wm 2379 - 1 +20 =21 -11 1.5
24. Benen, Samson 2321 - 3 +33 =22 -16 1.5
25. Privman, Boris f 2253 = 9 - 8 =26 =30 1.5
26. Stein, Alan f 2389 - 7 =14 =25 -20 1.0
27. Eisen, Lewis f 2288 -15 +32 -12 -17 1.0
28. Young, Ron f 2280 - 4 --- --- +32 1.0
29. Aravena, Peter 2251 -10 -17 -14 +33 1.0
30. Weeramantry,Sunil f 2229 = - 5 -13 =25 1.0
31. Furdzik, Rafal 2229 -21 -18 =32 --- 0.5
32. Robinson, Adam 2201 -22 -27 =31 -28 0.5
33. Ward, Brennan 1825 -12 -24 -20 -29 0.0
1ST - $460
2ND - $220
3RD - $100
U2400 - $160
Thanks to our sponsors:
National Scholastic Chess Foundation, Inc.
Bermuda Chess Association
David Lerner CEO - The Totius Group