GM Ben Finegold's Blog: Musings of a Grandmaster

Saint Louis Invitational -- Back to 50%

I was able to win today versus Angelo Young in an interesting game.  I got frisky in the opening, playing the unusual 5.Rg1!?!?  I attacked, and attacked, and attacked, and was fortunate that Angelo gave back the sacrificed piece, and I was able to win a better ending.

Another awesome round for the spectators, as all the games were interesting, and, like last round, three were decisive.

Enrico Sevillano won an interesting game against Michael Brooks.  At one point, it seemed like all of Enrico's pawns were on the third rank!

Marc Arnold was probably winning against Elshan Moradiabadi, but had to settle for a draw in the end.

Darwin Yang had an up and down game with Mac Molner which ended in a long draw.  Mac was down a piece in the ending for two passed pawns, and I was not sure who was trying to win!

Giorgi Margvelashvili won a long ending against Leonid Gerzhoy.  Georgi was forced to move his king very early, but his two bishops and space seemed to be more important as white's king was never really in danger.

I play black against Gerzhoy in round 3, which starts in 25 minutes!

Saint Louis Invitational -- Round 1 Recap

Round 1 of the Saint Louis Invitational featured many exciting games and decisive results.  I was first to lose, as already mentioned in my previous blog.  Also losing quickly was #1 seed GM Giorgi Margvelashvili as he fell victim to a crushing attack at the hands of young IM Darwin Yang.  Michael Brooks easily held Mac Molner with the black pieces, as they drew in less than 20 moves.  Marc Arnold looked to be losing against Enrico Sevillano, when the former gave away his entire queenside, but time trouble and sturdy defense allowed Marc to save the day and hold a draw.  Angelo Young won a long game against Leonid Gerzhoy when the latter blundered an exchange in time trouble.  The game went for quite some time, but eventually Angelo was able to wrap up the full point.

Next round is 11AM Central time....I will have white versus Angelo Young.


1-3 Moradiabadi, Young, Yang  1

4-7 Arnold, Brooks, Sevillano, Molner  0.5

8-10 Finegold, Margvelashvili, Gerzhoy  0

Saint Louis Invitational -- Resident gets CRUSHED!

The tournament had begun, but not well for your favorite Resident!  I was CRUSHED in round 1 by Iranian GM Elshan Moradiabadi.  I was black in a King's Indian and made mistakes early, too early!  I decided to "win" the exchange, but my position was simply lost, as my king was too exposed and my queenside pieces were awful.  I was hoping to have no draws this event, but not this way!

Saint Louis Invitational

Hello blog readers! The 2nd annual Saint Louis Invitational starts tomorrow, Monday, April 9. The tournament features 3 GMs and 7 IMs. Unlike last year's event, I will be playing this time around, and this strong event will be immediately followed by The Bill Wright Saint Louis Open, a 5 round weekend swiss, also held at the Chess Club, April 14-15. Round 1 is Monday at 5PM, followed by 2 rounds per day, Tuesday-Friday at 11AM and 5PM. Pairings have been posted (go to the events tab on the Chess club website), and I will play Iranian GM Moradiabadi (and soon to be Saint Louis resident, when he starts at Webster U!) in round 1. Wish me luck, and keep a watch on my blog, as I post my games each day!

Mid-America Open -- Round 5

The tournament ended with a 5 way tie for first.  Joining Ron Burnett and I were Kevin Wasiluk, Doug Eckert, and Sean Vibbert as we all scored 4-1. Howard Chen and Gopal Menon had a hard fought draw on board 2 keeping them out of the money.

Spencer was able to win his last round against Kenny Thomas to finish with 3-2. Many of my students played in the event and I will have a lot of games to look at this week!

My next big event is the GM norm tournament held at the CCSCSL April 9-13, followed by the Saint Louis Open, April 14-15.

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