|Top seeds, IM's Kanan Izzat and James Morris|
The 2015 event has already seen a few upsets, but the tournament hangs in the balance. Top seed is IM James Morris, but he has already conceded 2 draws to Aleks Safarian and 5th seed IM Ari Dale. Second seed IM Kanan Izzat has had no such trouble winning all his first 4 games in fairly short order. The big round 5 game sees Izzat playing against the other IM on maximum points, Chris Wallis. Chris has also looked at ease in his games so this one should be a cracker!
|IM Chris Wallis (left) starts with a perfect 4/4, including a win against an old rival, FM Dusan Stojic|
The games can be followed on Noble Park's server and there are lots of games stored on Tornelo. The game that everyone was talking about this morning when I walked in was Kevin Sheldrick's escape against Angelo Tsagarakis.
Angelo is black and giving over 300 rating points to his opponent here. Black is 2 exchanges up and while there are probably many ways to win, the move that Angelo tragically played was one of the few to lose. 38..Rb2?? allowing Philidor's legacy after 39.Nf7 when Angelo resigned rather than being subjected to 39..Kg8 40.Nh6 Kh8 41.Qg8 Rxg8 42.Nf7#. I am guessing that being so dominant for so long, Angelo relaxed in the belief that he couldn't lose.
I was coaching local kids for most of the day, as Chess Kids were running a camp. Some of the kids got the chance to play a game in the tournament, but most were not ready for that sort of commitment. There will be a junior tournament run at a rate of 25 minutes + 10 second increment tomorrow alongside the Weekender and we're hoping that a lot of local kids show up to take part in it. The kids I was working with today had great thinking skills, and a huge desire to learn. Given the chance, some of these will become Ballarat Chess Club's future.
|Age is no barrier in chess!|