Saturday, January 17, 2009

Game of the Year -- 7th Place

This is the fourteenth part in a series of articles which will count down to revealing what game was voted as the 2008 USCL Game of the Year. For more information on exactly how this process works and the prize information, please refer to: Game of the Year Contest.


7th Place: IM Alex Lenderman (QNS) vs IM Dean Ippolito (NJ) 1-0

In the midst of a tactical melee, Lenderman got the best of the complications with 28. Qxf7!, forcing liquidation into a winning endgame.

Below are the comments from the judges on why they ranked the game where they did and in parentheses is the ranking given by that judge and the number of points awarded for that ranking.

FM Ron Young (3rd Place, 18 points):
White made a number of nice moves to reach a winning ending, but Black's inspired King charge made for one of the more exciting mopping-ups since the enchanted mop in Disney's Fantasia. And that one was really more scary than entertaining.

FM Ingvar Johannesson (5th Place, 16 points):
A nice tactical game by Lenderman. Black seems to be ok with the two Bishops vs a Rook, but he has some big time coordination problems, and after some nice tactics White ends up in a winning rook endgame. The stalemate attempt 40... Rxc4 was nice although it fell short, but it was somehow a nice cherry on top of a pretty good cake.

GM Jan Gustafsson (10th Place, 11 points):
Creative stuff from Lenderman, but I'm not a huge fan of the position he got out of the opening. Black's plan with 16... e5 looks wrong though, giving squares to the White pieces; I'd prefer something less committal such as 16... Qc7. Later on 19. Bxd6 is flashy, but I can't believe that it's the best move; 19. Qf3 instead looks like a huge edge while in the game Black should be ok with the two Bishops for Rook + Pawns. Lenderman came up with the creative 24. h3 25. g4 plan though, applying pressure and provoking Black's mistakes. 28. Qxf7 is a nice if obvious shot, and I'd guess Black is beyond salvation for the rest of the game. Pluses for creativity, but I'm just not buying his concept so not higher on my list.

FM Daniel Ludwig (11th Place, 10 points):
Pretty cool game. I enjoyed watching this one, from beginning to end. Ippolito had a nice game going, but got out of control with 16... e5, 17... exf4. One thing that impressed me by about this game was how Lenderman kept the initiative going, even with a Rook against two Bishops. 24. h3, 25. g4 was a nice plan that pretty much sealed the deal. In general this was a great game, but there was nothing deeper than one or two move shots.

IM Ben Finegold (14th Place, 7 points):
Lenderman played well (albeit, a bit over the top), but Ippy spoils the game with four consecutive mistakes from moves twenty two through twenty five. A nice tactical win though.

Total Score of Lenderman vs Ippolito: (7th Place, 62 Points)


Stay tuned for five more such articles as the field shrinks by one game every couple of days to see which of the following games will be the 2008 Game of the Year!

Week 5: SM Jorge Sammour-Hasbun (BOS) vs IM David Pruess (SF) 1-0 Article

Week 8: GM Sergey Erenburg (BAL) vs SM Jorge Sammour-Hasbun (BOS) 1-0 Article

Week 10: GM Jaan Ehlvest (TEN) vs GM Sergey Erenburg (BAL) 1/2-1/2 Article

Quarterfinals: IM Davorin Kuljasevic (DAL) vs GM Vinay Bhat (SF) 1-0 Article

Championship: GM Larry Christiansen (BOS) vs IM Marko Zivanic (DAL) 1-0 Article

Wildcard #2: GM Joel Benjamin (NJ) vs GM Sergey Erenburg (BAL) 0-1 Article


7th Place (62 Points): IM Alex Lenderman (QNS) vs IM Dean Ippolito (NJ) 1-0 Article Elimination Article

8th Place (60 Points): GM Vinay Bhat (SF) vs IM Emory Tate (CHC) 1-0 Article Elimination Article

9th Place (59 Points): GM Alex Shabalov (NY) vs SM Jorge Sammour-Hasbun (BOS) 0-1 Article Elimination Article

10th Place (54 Points): IM Alex Lenderman (QNS) vs FM Oleg Zaikov (CAR) 1-0 Article Elimination Article

11th Place (51 Points): IM Lev Milman (CAR) vs GM Alex Shabalov (NY) 1-0 Article Elimination Article

12th Place (46 Points): GM Sergey Kudrin (PHI) vs GM Larry Christiansen (BOS) 1/2-1/2 Article Elimination Article

13th Place (44 Points): IM Alex Lenderman (QNS) vs IM Emory Tate (CHC) 1-0 Article Elimination Article

14th Place (42 Points): GM Pascal Charbonneau (NY) vs GM Sergey Kudrin (PHI) 1-0 Article Elimination Article

15th Place (35 Points): FM Bruci Lopez (MIA) vs GM Gregory Serper (SEA) 1-0 Article Elimination Article

16th Place (34 Points): IM Davorin Kuljasevic (DAL) vs GM Julio Becerra (MIA) 1-0 Article Elimination Article

17th Place (32 Points): GM Patrick Wolff (SF) vs IM Marko Zivanic (DAL) 1/2-1/2 Article Elimination Article

18th Place (27 Points): IM Dmitry Schneider (QNS) vs GM Eugene Perelshteyn (BOS) 1-0 Article Elimination Article

19th Place (22 Points): FM Oleg Zaikov (CAR) vs SM Jorge Sammour-Hasbun (BOS) 1/2-1/2 Article Elimination Article

20th Place (18 Points): GM Jaan Ehlvest (TEN) vs IM Rogelio Barcenilla (ARZ) 1-0 Article Elimination Article

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