Can I blog when I’m not even there?

by admin on May 16, 2008

At the U.S. Championship, that is. And the answer is: Of course! As a fan, I’ve got to root for the “home team.” And where I’m concerned, there are two home teams:

San Francisco area residents:

  • Josh Friedel 2.5/4
  • David Pruess 2/4
  • Sam Shankland 2/4

ChessLecture.com lecturers:

  • Jesse Kraai 2/4
  • Eugene Perelshteyn 2/4
  • David Vigorito 1.5/4

So no one is really doing fabulously, but no one is getting blown out of the water, either. The leader of the tournament so far is Sergei Kudrin (3.5/4).

Josh Friedel had a wonderful attacking victory over Boris Gulko (you can play it through at the bottom of this post), and that’s really saying something. He sacked the exchange and then just kept on making threats and putting pieces en prise, both at the same time. I couldn’t tell what was going on, but he made it work somehow. This could be  a sign that he’s in really good form.

David Pruess had a really nice win in round three against Dean Ippolito (also at the bottom of this post), in which David played the King’s Gambit! Wooo hooo! Not only that, David made up a new move on the fourth move of the King’s Gambit Declined. You can bet I’m going to look at this game very closely, because it’s something I might want to try out myself.

You just mark my words, someday, SOMEDAY, the King’s Gambit will come back into style, when people get tired of banging their heads against Petrov Defenses and Berlin Variations of the Ruy Lopez.

I was wondering why Jesse Kraai was having such a ho-hum start — four games, four draws. For the winner of the U.S. Championship Qualifier, I had slightly higher hopes. But then I looked at who he has been matched up against: Onischuk (the highest-rated player in the tournament), Akobian, Finegold, Shabalov. Which of these four was he supposed to beat? Even though Jesse is a GM, every one of these players has him outrated. That kind of brings home the point that there are no easy games in this crowd.

With three of the regular ChessLecturers playing in the U.S. Championship, the management has asked me to record a couple of extra lectures to fill in for them. I’m going to record the lectures on Monday, and I think you’ll find them to be lots of fun. (I would guess that they will probably air Tuesday and Wednesday.) I’m using the opportunity to start a new series that’s a little different from what I’ve done before. Ssshhhh… No spoilers…

Now, if you scroll down a little ways, you can play over the two games by Friedel and Pruess that I mentioned above. 

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Extra space inserted deliberately to create room for chess diagrams
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More extra space inserted to create room for the diagrams
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I love technology, but why can’t it do what I want?
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Like resize the darned diagrams
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Anyway, this ought to be enough space
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Or not
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Okay! Here we go!
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Here are the games by Friedel and Pruess that I mentioned above, courtesy of MonRoi.com. First Friedel’s assault on Mount Gulko:

And now Pruess shows why a Bishop on b3 plus a Rook on the f-file spell trouble for Black in the King’s Gambit:

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Kazelgif May 30, 2008 at 10:11 am

Hi webmaster!

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stephanazs September 20, 2008 at 8:38 am

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