Monday, September 28, 2009

Cychess September 27th, 2009

  I went to play in the Cychess tournament yesterday. Cychess is a 3 round game in 45 minute tournament held 3 or 4 times a year by Ames chess legend, Roger Gotschall. The entry fee is $5 (or $3 if you are a member of the Cyclone Chess Club) and is a great one day chess tournament where I can leave my house at 11:45, be home at 7:00 and get 3 games in. I travelled with a member of the Marshalltown Chess Club, Jaleb Jay. Unfortunately, we were paired against each other in the first round!! Since there was an odd number of players, I offered to sit out the game and let Jaleb play the odd man out. I play a training game against Jaleb almost every Thursday and saw no reason to travel 40 miles to play one.
My first game was against Nathan Pang, an Ames grade schooler. Nathan is very low rated. I was well prepared to follow my usual strategy of playing solid, protecting my pieces, and waiting for my opponents mistake.
  My second game was against Yuzhou Zhang, the father of Jiahua Zhang, one of Iowa's top scholastic players. When I served as scholastic director of the Iowa State Chess Assocation, I ran unrated parents tournaments with thew scholastic tournaments so the parents could have something to do while the kids were playing. Yuzhou played in the parent sections and liked them so much, he signed up for a USCF membership and is a tournament player in his own right. He tied for first in the Iowa Open Under 1600 section this past Labor Day weekend. I was ready for a tough battle, and I made it much tougher when after the handshake, I picked up a pawn to make my first move only to discover I was not holding my d pawn,but had my c pawn in hand and I had to move it. So I had to play an opening I never played in a tournament before.

  All in all, a nice tournament me. I played solidly and with no mistakes except for my finger flub. A down side was that my chess clock got lost/misplaced/stolen. I lent it to someone to use and picked up the wrong one after the game. When that was claimed by the owner, my clock was gone. Amazing that this could happen in the midwest. Live and learn, I suppose.

Jason Juett, Kushan Tyagi, and Jiahua Zhang all went 3-0 and shared first place.