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2010 Washington State Championship / Premier / Invitational

Brilliancy Prizes

The 2010 Washington State Championship / Premier / Invitational chess tournaments were conducted as round-robins the weekends of February 6-7 and 13-15, 2010 in Seattle.

Return to main page for link to PGN file of the actual games.

The Brilliancy Prizes totaled $300 ($100 for best game in each section).

Championship Section

The winner:

Bragg vs. Hadzic: Starting with a symmetrical pawn structure and a slight lead of development at move 11, white slowly achieved almost complete domination of the board. I especially like the move 18.e4, which temporarily closes the dominant bishop to restrict black’s knights. The position after 31.f4 shows the triumph of white’s strategy – 7th rank domination, raking bishops, the marooned Ng6. Even the end is elegant; all of white’s pieces work to their full potential.

The runners up:

Greninger vs. Collyer: A very consistent and purposeful game by white, who methodically broke down broke black’s position. The maneuver 15.exf5 and 16.f4 forced black to make a basic choice, and his answer weakened the long diagonal which white proceeded to seize with 30.Bc3. Then the kingside blockade was pressured to the point where the king was required to maintain it (with 39… Kg6). White then arranged and executed the decisive breakthrough sacrifice (44.Nxe4), which could not be prevented.

Omori vs. Collyer: In a sharp Steinitz French White’s initial aggression (7.Qh5, 12.f5) was met with a powerful retort (13…Ne4). After 16.Rxd5 white was uncoordinated and black had easy play (16…Be6 followed by O-O and major pieces to the c-file). Black chose the apparently equivalent course with 16… O-O, but white began to develop a tempo and landed a powerful blow (22.Nxh6+) which forced the win.

Perez vs. Chen: Like several of the new champ’s wins, this victory was sealed in a well played ending. After white wasted some time in the opening (10.Nf3 instead of the critical 10.Ndb5) black was comfortable and soon won a little pawn exchange (center pawn for wing pawn). The game transposed into the ending, where black acquired a ‘thorn’ on c3. The climax was reached on move 38, where white’s tactical bid for freedom Rxc3 was met by the cool …e4! when the situation was instantly clarified: minus plus.

Perez vs. Bragg: As might be expected from this match up, this game saw creative and uncompromising play from both players. What exactly the evaluation was at any certain point I am not qualified to say, but by the time black flagged white was winning. Bravo!

Premier Section

The winner:

Macgregor vs. Kelly: After white passed up the opportunity to play 18.f5, black showed the master touch and chose exactly the right plan and executed it in a vigorous manner. Not even a tempo for castling!

The runners up:

Sang vs. Wang: White energetically punished black’s only slightly delayed development with a couple of stylish strokes. The game ended many moves later have but the result was never in doubt.

Watts vs. Bartron: A remarkable game. Beginning on move 9 white begins a pawn storm on the kingside, and doggedly carries it out. At the critical juncture on move 22, just as it appears the attack is out of steam, white forces a queen trade(!) and soon constructs a mating net.

Dean vs. Sang: Although black played an early ...f5 in the Ruy Lopez, it was white who took advantage of the open lines that advance created from the very opening. When the dust cleared white was two pawns up.

Bartron vs. Xing: Black’s compensation for the exchange persisted into the ending. Check out the position after 22.Na3, black’s knights are excellent.

Invitational Section

The Winner:

Vanmane vs. Ummel: After white surrendered the light squares black acquired a monster Bd3. Though black could have played the position in several ways, he delightfully opted for a messy tactical solution (17…g5!?). The final position is a classic.

The runners up:

Narayanan vs. Fryberg: This very complete game featured a burst of opening tactics, a back and forth middlegame with a positional queen sacrifice, and a well played ending.

Ummel vs. Fryberg: A classy positional game. All hail Ne5! Such a knight is worth a rook (as has been said before), and this game proves it.

Feng vs. Vanmane: Strong and thematic play against the King’s Indian Defense! Well played by the up and coming Mr. Feng.

Ummel vs. Hosford: Black sacrificed a pawn in a promising sort of Fromm’s Gambit, but white kept cool and defended well. Black’s initiative petered out and white completely turned the tables with the attractive 30.Re6!