Posted on

Looking back to the seniors

The new event the US Senior Championship took place this July.

Ten players had single round robin tournament. All players despite Alex Fishbein had notable chess career. All grandmasters. The tournament favorite was not announced, but there was only one active player present Alex Shabalov who finally won the event. In his own words he had a lot of luck and in total he had three lost positions during the tournament.

All other players had more or less the same weakness lack of practice. Also the physical fitness or lack of it might play a lot in senior’s competition. The quality of games differed a lot. There were some outstanding games, but most of the time at the end usually in time trouble many games turned to muddy waters and as we say they did not have their logical end.

This was true with my games, but I am sure everybody could complain. The format was difficult the time control 90 minutes for the first 40 moves and then half hour to complete the games with 30 second increment does not look first very tricky for younger generation. However most of the players in this field had in the past different much more friendly time control. Like 2,5 hours for the first 40 moves and after that the game was adjourned.

I lost my first game where I mixed everything possible in the opening. In my next game I tried to be solid and missed several winning opportunities.

In the next game after that I missed a golden opportunity as well. Both my opponents shared second-third place at the end.

 

 

Finally on round four I won and I thought I am back in the competition.

Now after this game I played against my friend Alexander Yermolinsky. I was Black and still I was in fighting mood. I got very promising positions, but in severe time trouble accepted his draw offer which was made on move 30. There was a rule no draws allowed before move 30.

Next time I bring more games and some inside stories from seniors. Time being here is the final standings.

Cross table after round 9

Rank Name Rating 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Score
1 GM Shabalov, Alexander 2500 x ½ ½ ½ 1 ½ ½ 1 ½ 1 6.0
2 GM Kaidanov, Gregory 2544 ½ x 1 1 ½ ½ 0 ½ ½ ½ 5.0
3 GM Goldin, Alexander 2540 ½ 0 x 0 1 1 1 0 ½ 1 5.0
4 GM Christiansen, Larry 2574 ½ 0 1 x ½ 1 0 0 1 ½ 4.5
5 GM Novikov, Igor 2556 0 ½ 0 ½ x ½ ½ 1 1 ½ 4.5
6 GM Benjamin, Joel 2524 ½ ½ 0 0 ½ x 1 1 ½ ½ 4.5
7 GM Yermolinsky, Alex 2504 ½ 1 0 1 ½ 0 x 0 ½ 1 4.5
8 GM Dlugy, Maxim 2518 0 ½ 1 1 0 0 1 x 0 ½ 4.0
9 GM Ehlvest, Jaan 2515 ½ ½ ½ 0 0 ½ ½ 1 x ½ 4.0
10 GM Fishbein, Alexander 2432 0 ½ 0 ½ ½ ½ 0 ½ ½ x 3.0

 

Jaan Ehlvest