London Chess Classic 2015

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Today I came back home from London. I think I could write entire article just about my travel as I missed my flight and basically was stressed more than during the whole tournament 😀

…but let’s better talk about positives. I played in FIDE Open and the field was quite strong, there were 28 GMs, 34 IMs and I was 63rd on the starting list so it was a great chance to show my potential. I managed to outplay every weaker player I faced quite convincingly and each game against stronger player was full of fight. I played 2 guys from world top 100, GM E.Postny and GM H.Melkumyan, even though I lost those games I played very agressively and had some chances. After 6 rounds I had 4 points but still without a win over someone strong so the real test came in the last three rounds where I made 2,5 with average above 2450! I beat 2 GMs and made a draw with 1 good IM.

I shared 8th place, my performance was above 2500, I got 4th International Master norm and gained more than 40 ELO points so on January I’ll finally cross 2400! My detailed results: http://chess-results.com/tnr197807.aspx?lan=1&art=9&fed=POL&flag=30&wi=821&snr=63

LCC 2015

In front of Olympia where the event took place

I also had a chance to follow the best players in the world live in action. Unfortunately they were playing more less at the same time as I was playing my games so I was unable to enjoy it as much as I wanted… Still that was nice to sit in their playing hall and experience it live, not online.

Naka vs Caruana

just before handshake Caruana vs Nakamura

There wasn’t a lot of time to visit the city but I managed to see a thing or two 🙂 One thing which caught my eye immediately was… chess set (made 12th century!) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lewis_chessmen

Lewis Chess Set in the British Museum

What can I say more? I’m just looking forward playing more such tournaments!

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my impressions after Ostravsky Konik 2012

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As I promised I’m writing more about my last tournament…

I have already played in Ostrava in 2008 (my first tournament in Czech Republic) and scored very well, 8th place and performance close to 2400. In next years I wanted to play there again but somehow I was unable mainly due to school obligations. This year I have lots of things to do at my university but just few days before start of the tournament I decided I can get away with it.

I was 6th on the starting list and first and second round were quite easy for me, sometimes this is a key for me to score well in the tournament – just not to loose any points against weaker opponents. In 3rd and 4th round I didn’t play great but well enough to score 1,5/2 against players 2300+.

5th round was very important to me, I was playing Black versus IM Pavel Simacek who defeated me recently in Novy Bor. I had good score in the tournament (3,5/4) so I treated this encounter very seriously and was preparing whole day as I was doing some years ago. Both players were playing the opening very quickly being confident own variations but it was me who got won opening battle. I got great position with Black:

diagram

P.Simacek (2447) – P.Nguyen (2374), Ostrava 2012 – position after 25 moves, White to move

Black is exchange down but bishop pair together with pawn on d3, total control over c-file and lack of coordination between White’s rooks gives Black practically winning position. White tried 26.Nc1 and I could choose between two winning ideas:

  • 26…Rc2 27.Nxd3 Bb5 28.Ke1 preparing Rd2 but there’s 28…Be3 and White is in kind of zugzwang!
  • 26…d2 27.Nd3 Be3 and White can’t give up exchange by means of 28.Ke2 because of …Re8 and if 29Rxd2 then …Bf4+ 30.Kd1 Ba4+ winning and in case of let’s say 28.b3 Black can play 28…d4 followed by …Rc3, …Bb5 etc. White is busted.

In the game however I went completely wrong, I played 26…Ba4? 27.b3 and I could still keep something with 27…Bb5 but I played 27…Rxc1?? and after 28.Rxc1 Bxb3 29.Rb1! White is winning… I totally missed move like Rb1… now after 29…Bxc4 came 30.Rxb6 axb6 31.Ke1 and Black couldn’t survive.

It’s really bad I didn’t win this position… I should win position like this even against Kasparov because if I don’t win having so big advantage how big should it be? One can say “it happens to everyone” and it’s true but I should find the reason of my bad decisions anyway.

Rounds 6th and 7th were quite strange for me. In 6th round there were many mistakes from both sides, game was very messy and eventually drawn and in 7th round I equalized with Black and just kept pressure for some time and my opponent blundered so I won easily.

On the other hand 8th round was very interesting, I recommend you to find this game in database (Pacher Milan – Nguyen Piotr, Ostrava 2012). I played Black against young IM 2400+ and it was extremely sharp and after difficult battle it was me who scored one point!

And to my surprise I had great result in the tournament and draw in last round was enough for me to get International Master norm. Those who are reading my blog regularly understand how much I tried to get this… So the last round was agreed for a draw without any hessitations from both sides. I was White and win would give me 1st place in the tournament so I could try but norm is a norm, I can play next tournament but now I achieved this what I was trying to achieve for almost 3 last years… (my first norm was during holidays 2009 in Olomouc).

To Summarize: I played just normal chess, nothing special and in the only game where I had really professional opening preparation I lost. What was the key I made this IM norm so easily? I don’t really know… 😛 Maybe all I needed was more experience and good tournament (average of my opponents was 2300+) so I could show sth instead of constantly fighting with much weaker opponents.

Tournament website: http://ostravskykonik.cz/ and final results http://www.chess-results.com/tnr71611.aspx?art=1&rd=9&lan=5&turdet=YES&flag=30

report from Novy Bor after 4 days

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The organizers of the Czech Tour always make tournaments in places nice for tourists. It partially answers the question why there’re so many foreign chessplayers coming for chess tournaments in Czech Republic. The possibility of spending free time is just very attractive.

In Novy Bor the organizers passed the exam once again, this small city is very nice to have a good rest. I walk few hours every day around the city breathing fresh air and in the evening one can spend some time in various restaurants drinking hot wine (in Cze: svařené víno) which I really do recommend 🙂

Paweł Flak and Piotr Nguyen, in front of Klić, near Novy Bor 2012

Paweł Flak and Piotr Nguyen, in front of Klić, near Novy Bor 2012

After 4 rounds there’re five players leading in the tournament with 3,5 point (I’m on 4th place). And ten players have 3 points with good chances to catch current leaders.
I think it is worth noting on shared 6-7th place there is little boy (11 years old) with same name as mine(!) Nguyen Thai Dai Van. I think we’ll hear about him more and more in the future and I’ll surely follow results of this young talented boy.

All in all there’re still 5 rounds to go, everything can happen especially that tomorrow we have double round, but I don’t have chance for IM norm – too little titled opponents…

results after 4 rounds: http://chess-results.com/tnr65600.aspx?art=1&rd=4&lan=5&fed=UKR&turdet=YES&flag=30

Novy Bor 11.02-18.02.2012

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I managed to pass all my exams at the university so now I have deserved winter holidays and it’s not hard to predict I’m going to play chess tournament! I haven’t been training for some time but I believe I have kind of fresh mind and I’ll be able to find some creative ideas over a board.

Last year I’ve played few tournaments abroad (France, Ukraine and Romania) but this time I’ll play in Czech Republic where I played some tournaments in 2008 (Ostrava), 2009 (Nachod, Olomouc, Plzen) and 2010 (Prague, Olomouc). I always enjoy participating in chess events in Czech Republic, I don’t know why these tournaments despite of low prizes attract strong players from many countries! In Poland there are many local tournaments where the prize is comparable but no one would ever dream about inviting one foreign International Master. I totally don’t understand why there’s so huge difference.

On 6th February 2012 there were registered 97 players from 9 countries(!) including 1 GM, 6 IMs and 1 WIM. Having said that there is theoretical possibility to make International Master norm which I’m trying to get for quite a long time… (I’ve got one so far from Olomouc 2009).
Starting list: http://czechtour.net/files/Novy_Bor_Open.xls

All results shall be here http://www.czechtour.net/novy-bor-open/results-and-games/ so keep fingers crossed for me and follow my results. I’ll write some reports here if I have Internet connection there.

I depart today’s evening – hope to be there on time tommorow 🙂

5,6,7,8…

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Unfortunately I was unable to connect to the internet recently that’s why I couldn’t post anything new.

At the moment I also don’t have comfortable connection thus I’ll just quickly tell about the results:

5. draw with Emil Mirzoev (2138) in the Pirc Defence

6. I beat International Master Grekh Andrey (2378) playing 1.f4!

7. victory over Vladimir Meleshko (2286) playing French Defence.

and I needed 1,5 point out of two last games to get the International Master norm, but unfortunately today I lost to International Master Zajarnyi Anatoli (2337). After the opening I got slightly better endgame but probably I played it too sharp and fall into some tactics and later it was very tough to play

Tomorrow I’m playing against WIM Adrenko Irina (2272) with Black and I don’t have any chance to get IM norm…

After the tournament I hope I’ll post something more interesting 😉

My next tournament is Najdorf Memorial in Warsaw. Here’s the starting list: http://www.poloniachess.pl/najdorf2011/A/list_of_players.html

And I’m going to attack IM norm again…