Caissa Hong Kong Chess Club

Excitement and Drama in Round 6 of YGP 2 – Anything can happen in next round

March 4th, 2015

Unfortunately Ulysses could not make it today (resulting in an automatic win for Andy) but apart from that we had action on all other boards in round 6.

 

The Start of Caissa YGP Round 6

The Start of Caissa YGP Round 6 – Time to wake up Anika!

 

This was a round with highs and dramatic lows. To start with, on board 1 Teddy could have freed himself up to pole position for round 7 by beating James. His ferocious attack led to win of a piece and just-not-check-mate. However, possibly Teddy forgot that he was a piece up when he accepted James’ draw offer when his immediate check mate didn’t work.

On table 2 even more drama. Given the above, by winning from Ronald, Richard could have pushed himself up to first place instead of Teddy. But at the end of a long pawn endgame battle Richie let his completely winning position of King + Queen against Ronald’s King + pawn end in a draw. Tension and pressure must be high in this event as we all know Richard’s qualities to be way above this to happen – and similar things were to happen on other boards too…

 

Ronald (white) vs. Richard and Miguel Angel (white) vs. Harsh in the background

Ronald (white) vs. Richard and Miguel Angel (white) vs. Harsh in the background

 

These results were definitely useful to Miguel Angel who beat Harsh by timing his king-side attack well enough to gain some pawns for free. It was also calmer and more straightforward to winning routes on the boards where Marco beat Toby and Mei Jing beat Harold after both Toby and Harold had made some early mistakes.

Samuel came with lots of advantage out of the opening with white against Anika but the excitement of having a good position could work against you if you lose patience and that is what might explain why Samuel lost the game.

 

Samuel against Anika on the foreground, followed by Seteven against Pak, mei Jing against Harold and Marco against Toby

Samuel against Anika on the foreground, followed by Steven against Pak, Mei Jing against Harold and Marco against Toby

 

Finally, the most impressive game seen in a while on any chess board was between Steven and Pak. Steven had developed his white pieces in such a harmonious way that when he lost his queen through a knight double attack check, he managed to create immediate counterplay. Allowing pins, creating new ones, trading few pieces in the way of several checks he wanted to give with his combined bishops, Steven suddenly had pushed the black king back to the middle of the board where it was checkmated by a combination of 3 minor pieces and a rook. Pak probably could have done something about it 10 moves earlier, e.g., by sacrificing something back, but the last 5 moves were already part of a forced win.

As can be seen from below ranking tables in the coming last round, anything can happen.

Cross Table Ranking after Round 6

Cross Table Ranking after Round 6

Ranking after Round 6

Ranking after Round 6

Pairing Round 7

Pairing Round 7

Long You Champion Winter 2015 – Miguel Angel 2nd and David 3rd

March 2nd, 2015

Last Friday, in the 7th and last round, Long was leading with 5 points but he was not present and David with 4 points on 2nd place was not playing either. Therefore the top 3 positions were not secured until the very last game ended.

That game was between Melvin and Miguel Angel. If Melvin would win he would join Miguel Angel and David with 4 points and depending on the results of James and Henry, this could mean a prize…

 

The last game of the tournament: Melvin with white against Miguel Angel in Round 7

The last game of the tournament: Melvin with white against Miguel Angel in Round 7

 

However in an endgame with strong queen attack that was en route to be winning for Melvin, Miguel Angel lured Melvin’s white king towards the middle of the board into checkmate.

The other key match that could still change the ranking in the top 3 was between Koji and James. Gradually pieces went off the board until a 2 rooks vs. 5 pawns endgame was left in which Koji managed to stay more precise, winning a few pawns and the game.

 

Koji with white against James and Ray with white in the background against Henry

Koji with white against James and Ray with white in the background against Henry

Conrad with white against Michel

Conrad with white against Michel

 

Although there were no prizes at stake in the games between Henry and Ray and Conrad and Michel – both boards showed dynamic positions. While Michel with black pressed his h and g pawns far up, supported by a rook, piece and queen, Conrad suffered a piece loss. After this his play through the middle was insufficient to prevent a stampede of the well coordinated black pieces trampling the white king.

In the game between Ray and Henry it was Ray who was slamming on the door of the black king with his pawns pushed up all the way to h5 and g5, supported by queen and pieces. However, Ray chose to break the black protective pawns in front of the black king in peril  by playing g6 instead of h6. This made a difference of day and night as Henry freed up his Rh8 after capturing f7xg6 and with his active queen and knight was able to execute a decisive attack on the queen side.

With these results, Long stayed number 1 and became Champion with 5 points. Miguel Angel, single digits in age, ended also with 5 points and collected 2nd prize (and counted and recounted his 750HKD prize money …). David with 4 points ended 3rd. Trophies will be given next week.

Thanks all for the good atmosphere and several fine games played over the board.

Final Ranking Caissa Winter 2015  Open

Final Ranking Caissa Winter 2015 Open

 

Cross table after 7 rounds

Cross table after 7 rounds

Teddy and and James share first place in YGP2 … and meet next Sunday

February 25th, 2015

With Miguel Angel drawing against Richard in round 5 Teddy has emerged on the top position again after his win against Ronald in that same round, sharing 1st place with James who won against Marco. The game to watch in round 6 will be James against Teddy!

Teddy with white against Ronald

Teddy with white against Ronald breaking through the center

 

Below the ranking after round 5 and the pairing for round 6:

Cross Table Ranking after Round 5

Cross Table Ranking after Round 5

Pairing Round 6

 

 

Long You Stays on Top but …

February 24th, 2015

After Long beat James in their encounter before CNY, Long has freed himself a full point from his followers. However, as Long will not be in town this Friday the top 3 places are not settled at all yet.

See below for ranking after round 6 and pairing round 7…

Cross Table after Round 6

Cross Table after Round 6

 

Pairing Round 6

Pairing Round 7

Long You Leads Winter Open

February 9th, 2015

The game between the until-then only two undefeated players last Friday ended in a win for Long who met David’s Sicilian with the c3 variation.

Henry’s good-looking sacrifice of a piece for 2 pawns and a strong king side attack did not go as planned against James who found enough of his white pieces readily positioned for the win when black’s assault had run out of steam.

Our 9 years old Miguel Angel came under dangerous fire of several pins and attacks all around his defensive white pieces but he still managed to win the game after Conrad’s miscalculation of move order cost him a rook.

 

Miguel Angel vs. Conrad - Long in background

Miguel Angel vs. Conrad – Long in background watched by Melvin

 

Koji and Michel maneuvered their pieces around for a long time before finally the end game with rook + piece and few pawns on both sides grounded into a stand-still  and draw.

 

Koji vs. Michel

Koji with white vs. Michel

 

The ranking and score table are below, as is the pairing for next round when the game between James and Long could be crucial for the championship:

Cross table after Round 5

Cross table after Round 5

 

Pairing Round 6

Pairing Round 6

 

Pairing Round 5 Winter Open and Youth Grand Prix 2

February 4th, 2015

Coming Friday, Long and David, the only two players without a loss yet will meet to what would likely end with a fierce battle for the full point. Can Miguel Angel show against Conrad that his excellent win against Henry last week was not a coincidence? Will Koji push on after his clear win last week at cost of Michel? James and Henry will be eager to avoid 2 consecutive losses, but who will succeed, or is a draw good enough as Melvin with a BYE point will surely move up? All the answers coming Friday!

 

Pairing Caissa Winter Open 2015 Round 5

Pairing Caissa Winter Open 2015 Round 5

 

In the YGP2 round 5 Richard catapulted himself to board 1 where he will meet his Discovery Bay Caissa club mate Miguel Angel who seems to be in great from. Teddy, ranked second, will have to give it his all against Ronald who hasn’t lost yet. James will find a strongly ascending Marco as his opponent this time and Ulysses, who played a game less and still ranks high, will have to deal with Oliver who also hasn’t lost yet with 3 draws and a win out of his 4 games. Toby and Andy’s match outcome will be decisive in regard to staying in the top half or below as is the case with Harsh who can stay in the top half if he manages to beat Steven. Both girls Anika and Mei Jing will try to prove against Pak and Samuel respectively that it doesn’t happen all (Sun)days both girls lose! Harold can enjoy a free Sunday and point being the player with a BYE due to odd number of players.

 

Pairing Caissa Winter YGP2 2015 Round 5

Pairing Caissa Winter YGP2 2015 Round 5

 

Miguel Angel Leads YGP 2 flanked by four other players with equal points

February 3rd, 2015

After the 4th round there are five players, each with 3 points, topping the ranking.

On board 1 we had a lengthy but noteworthy battle of the titans of U12, James, and U10, Miguel Angel. Both players lead their age group in Grand Prix points and the game was daring and adventurous from both sides. In the beginning of the endgame Miguel Angel with white managed to force his queen towards close range from the black king and after some necessary exchanges to ease the pressure in front of the black king, Miguel Angel ended in a rook-bishop vs rook-bishop end game one pawn up. With only few minutes left on the clock Miguel Angel accepted the 3-fold repetition by James’ rook checks.

A great game worthy a replay:

 

On board 2, the U12 boys Ronald and Oliver drew in a game that looked very good for Oliver for a long time, but the pawn up advantage in the end was not enough for Oliver to win.

On board 3, Andy and Teddy had an important game for the U10 grand prix points. Teddy with black had put a lot of pressure on white, winning 2 pawns and later returning them for a superior king pawns endgame which was won very well.

Ulysses with white found Richard blocking his way to get a 3rd win in a row and through this win Richard is back in the top 5.

Marco played concentrated and well against Anika as did Harsh against Mei Jing. Despite their resilience it turned out not to be a good day for the girls.

Harold with white benefited from an error Samuel made early in the game and Toby unfortunately had to wait an hour and got a free point because of Steven’s no show.

 

Harold playing chess against Toby and Ulysses after finishing their games (Toby waiting for his opponent)

Harold playing chess against Toby and Ulysses after finishing their games (Toby waiting for his opponent)

 

YGP2 Cross Table after R4

YGP2 Cross Table after Round 4

Samira jumps to 2nd position and Suneh sets scholar’s mate record for the club

January 31st, 2015

After 33 rounds since the start of this season in September 2014, the Discovery Bay internal club competition for the club members Saturdays, shows a ranking in flux. Most noteworthy, compared to the ranking on 25 October, is that Samira (Advanced group) has settled strongly on 2nd place and the Intermediate group players Suneh, Jay and Wo Hang have claimed a spot in the top 10. From the Beginners group Seth and Noah have pushed themselves up close to the top 10 – very impressive.

 

Chor Xi against Nathan

Chor Xi (white) against Nathan

 

Good to see that our very youngest players Nathan and Chor Xi start winning regularly and much less so lose because of falling for opening tricks. Speaking of which, we had last week an absolute record set by Suneh, who in a round robin of 5 players beat all his 4 opponents by Scholar’s mate variations – even playing with black, Suneh’s opponents’ white kings collapsed on f2.

 

Jay with white against Suneh - today no Scholar's mate ...

Jay with white moved his queen out well against Suneh’s Bb6 and Qc5 battery aiming for f2 – today no Scholar’s mate

 

Christopher 9white) against Koza in foreground and Samira scoring her 2nd win of the day against Joshua in the back.

Christopher (white) against Koza in foreground and Samira scoring her 2nd win of the day against Joshua in the back.

 

Note that we play with the Keizer System. It can thus be so that players who have played less, but against opponents who are higher ranked, will have a higher ranking than players who played more and/or won more games, but against lower ranked opponents. You can read a good explanation on the Keizer System here. Below the ranking as of 31 January 2015.

 

DB Internal Competition - Rank After Round 33 on 31 Janaury 2015

DB Internal Competition – Rank After Round 33 on 31 January 2015 (Punten = points, Wa = value, Gsp = played, Gw= win, Rm= draw, Vl = lose)

 

David Leads Open Winter

January 30th, 2015

In the Open Winter this Friday David and James played on board 1 knowing that the winner of this game would be able to claim first place – for a while. James with black chose the Dutch against David’s 1.d4 and he perhaps gave in the middle game a little too much space for white on the queen side which resulted in just enough pressure to breach the black position.

Michel with white played an equal game against Long’s Sicilian until in the beginning of the middle game Long managed to push his pawn to e4 and torture the white pieces in the center close to it such that there was some material loss down the road, enough for Long to play the game out precisely enough.

Henry with white played the exchange variation against Miguel Angel’s Philidor. Miguel kept an eye on the Philidor weakness d6 in this variation in a very creative way, with Ke7 and Bc7, and timed his break through on the queen side, pushing up the pawns b5 and a5 with all his pieces cooperating to the maximum, very well. Henry, having had to use a lot of time, resigned after Miguel had won a pawn and under the time pressure Henry ended up in, had created himself a winning position.

Conrad with white played aggressively against Melvin who had played h6 a little too early. Conrad’s piece sacrifice in the opening on the king side became thus a worthwhile venture and Melvin was never able to free up his position and after a good fight of many moves finally lost the game.

Ray, who played a very good game against Miguel Angel last week, misplaced some of his white pieces from somewhere halfway the opening against Koji who managed to win material and developed his black pieces in the game towards a win in a straightforward way.

Winter 2015 Open Cross Table after R4

Winter 2015 Open Cross Table after R4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pairing Round 4 of YGP2 and Winter Open

January 28th, 2015

It will be an exciting Sunday ahead of us. On the top 2 boards we have the top 3 players James, Ronald and Miguel Angel as well as the highest ranked U12 of YGP1, Oliver, facing each other.

On board 3 we will see if Ulysses’ quick ascent will continue at cost of top seed Richard and on board 4 it will be a battle of U10 titans between Andy and Teddy.

On the other boards it remains unclear what to expect, except in Pak’s case who got a full point already from BYE due to odd number of players.

 

Pairing Round 4 YGP2 2015

Pairing Round 4 YGP2 2015

 

In the Winter Open, on Friday, on board 1 David will have to prove his worth against James from whom he had narrowly escaped in the Autumn Open giving checkmate with just one second left.

Michel on board 2 meets Long who hasn’t lost a game yet; same on board 3 with Miguel Angel who meets Henry who also has not tasted defeat yet.

On board 4 and 5 both Conrad and Melvin as well as Ray and Koji will surely try to get the full point to stay close to the top position. It could be very much so that like in the Autumn Open 2014 edition things will not be sure until the very last round.

 

Pairing Round 4 Open Winter 2015

Pairing Round 4 Open Winter 2015

Caissa Hong Kong Chess Club