Friday, December 24, 2010

Game of the Year -- 16th Place

This is the fifth part in a series of articles which will count down to revealing what game was voted as the 2010 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.


16th Place: Nicholas Rosenthal (MIA) vs NM Nick Thompson (ARZ) 1-0

With 24. Qd1!, Rosenthal nicely eyed the weakness on h5 and took advantage of it in short order.

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.

WIM Alisa Melekhina (9th Place, 12 points):
While GM vs. GM games may be instructive and can exemplify precise technique, oftentimes the intense and overpowering brawl that renders a game dynamic and enthralling is lacking. However, games between strong players that are not quite at the GM level often produce such a vibrant battle, and this game did not disappoint. Rosenthal opened with the alternative King's Indian Attack and immaculately played in keeping with the main ideas of defending the e5 pawn and exploiting Black’s weaknesses, while using Fischer's 14. a3 idea to neutralize Black's counterplay. Taking advantage of Thompson's hesitation to play h5, Rosenthal broke through with 17. Ng4 and concluded the game with a violent mating net, reminding us of what drew us to chess in the first place. It's always refreshing to see an anti-Sicilian fare so well and end with an upset.

GM Robert Hess (10th Place, 11 points):
I have to admit it: Nick Rosenthal played a sexy game. As an offbeat Sicilian player myself, I was happy not seeing forced variation after forced variation. I guess Thompson regretted bringing his Bishop to g7 instead of e7, but the mistake isn't so obvious until reviewing the game. It looks like it pressures e5, but that square was always protected by half the pieces on the board. The Nb1-d2-f1-g4-h6 maneuver was typical, but I think Thompson missed 22... f6. Not positive this actually works, but OK, kind of scary to play regardless. Another game played shockingly well by the Board Fours in this League.

FM Ingvar Johannesson (14th Place, 7 points):
Seemed like a fairly normal KIA going right. Black didn't get enough counterplay and simply had too many pieces on the Queenside and was unable to defend against the mass of White pieces mounting against the Kingside. Black made it a little too easy, but White found some nice attacking moves, for instance 24. Qd1 and also the end sequence was nice even though more or less anything won. Nice looking game, and I think the average chess player will prefer such a game vs a technical game between stronger players.

FM Ron Young (16th Place, 5 points):
White made it look easy, but so did Black. Still, a good advertisement for the KIA. I nominate it for a Clio.

GM Jan Gustafsson (16th Place, 5 points):
The beautiful King's Indian Attack plan at its purest. O-O, Re1, Bf4, Nbd2, Nf1, N1h2, Ng4, then mate somehow. Works perfectly here, Black doesn’t find counter measures, probably 20... Nd4 was no good, Qa5 looks more resilient. Nice finish and all that.

Total Score of Rosenthal vs Thompson: (16th Place, 40 Points)


Stay tuned for fifteen more such articles as the field shrinks by one game almost every day to see which of the following games will be the 2010 Game of the Year!

Week 1: GM Yury Shulman (STL) vs GM Melikset Khachiyan (LA) 1-0 Article

Week 2: GM Yury Shulman (STL) vs IM Florin Felecan (CHC) 0-1 Article

Week 3: IM Daniel Rensch (ARZ) vs WFM Tatev Abrahamyan (LA) 1-0 Article

Week 4: GM Josh Friedel (SF) vs GM Varuzhan Akobian (SEA) 1-0 Article

Week 6: GM Larry Christiansen (BOS) vs GM Jesse Kraai (SF) 1-0 Article

Week 7: IM Jonathan Schroer (CAR) vs GM Giorgi Kacheishvili (NY) 1-0 Article

Week 8: IM Jonathan Schroer (CAR) vs GM Larry Christiansen (BOS) 0-1 Article

Week 10: SM Jorge Sammour-Hasbun (BOS) vs GM Giorgi Kacheishvili (NY) 1-0 Article

Quarterfinals: NM Ilya Krasik (BOS) vs NM Adithya Balasubramanian (BAL) 1-0 Article

Championship: IM Sam Shankland (NE) vs GM Julio Becerra (MIA) 1-0 Article

Wildcard #1: NM Eric Rosen (CHC) vs Alex Guo (SEA) 0-1 Article

Wildcard #2: GM Varuzhan Akobian (SEA) vs GM Yury Shulman (STL) 1-0 Article

Wildcard #3: GM Giorgi Kacheishvili (NY) vs IM Sam Shankland (NE) 0-1 Article

Wildcard #4: GM Alex Stripunsky (MAN) vs GM Sergey Erenburg (BAL) 0-1 Article

Wildcard #7: IM Robert Hungaski (NE) vs IM Jonathan Schroer (CAR) 1-0 Article


16th Place (40 Points): Nicholas Rosenthal (MIA) vs NM Nick Thompson (ARZ) 1-0 Article Elimination Article

17th Place (35 Points): GM Varuzhan Akobian (SEA) vs GM Josh Friedel (SF) 1-0 Article Elimination Article

18th Place (31 Points): GM Dmitry Gurevich (CHC) vs IM Rogelio Barcenilla (ARZ) 1-0 Article Elimination Article

19th Place (27 Points): FM Charles Galofre (MIA) vs FM Marcel Milat (SEA) 1-0 Article Elimination Article

20th Place (23 Points): SM Jorge Sammour-Hasbun (BOS) vs IM Sasha Kaplan (BAL) 1-0 Article Elimination Article


Anonymous said...

Julius, you must be frustrated and annoyed with these incompetent judges for not ranking the league MVP's entry higher... your thoughts?

Anonymous said...

GMs Kasparov, Carlsen, Kramnik, Anand, and Aronian have all consented that the Schroer-Kacheishvili game should be unequivocally awarded the Game of the Year prize.

Anonymous said...

But GM Fischer said it should go to Stripunsky-Erenburg!

Anonymous said...

Who cares what any of those bums think, Julius G has already spoken

Aww :( said...

Aww... I was rooting for this game :(

Anonymous said...

Its super annoying that gran marika JuliusG posts annon in order to call himself, how long will this specticle continue,his opionions aren't worth a dime, he is probably rated 955 uscf.

Anonymous said...

oh my, JuliusG must be taking quite a while...

Anonymous said...

Its quite understandable given the big Victory in Washington, ever since "don't ask don't tell" has been repealed, JuliusG has been busy enlisting.

Nicholas Rosenthal said...

Thanks for the support everyone. The Sharks always come so close to winning, unfortunately Renier couldn't make it and Galofre's car broke down on the way over. Was a fun year, was glad to have a GOTW evaluated by the pros. See you next year.. Go Sharks!

Anonymous said...

Cmon, Nicholas its not like we all have blinders on, its a well known fact that Galofre's car had trouble days if not weeks before the match. There were cabs and rental car options which were available. The point is that your teammmate made no effort to come to the final and you damn well know it.

Anonymous said...

Well, i didn't know that you where there when it happened. Could you please tell me your name, Mr. Anonymous?

Pablito said...

Jajajaaaja, one annon asks another for his name. Jajajaajajjajaaja welco$e to uscl.