What Was Kazim Thinking?

It was a brutal penultimate round for the intrepid players from Georgia. GM Zapata managed to draw his game with Levy Rozman (2287), as did IM Carlos Perdomo, who drew with Alexander Betaneli (2246). Damir Studen also drew his game with IM John Cox (2371) from the United Kingdom.

Damir Studen (2264) vs IM John Cox (2371)
1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Nf3 dxc4 5. a4 Bf5 6. Ne5 Nbd7 7. Nxc4 Qc7 8. g3 e5 9. dxe5 Nxe5 10. Bf4 Nfd7 11. Qd4 f6 12. Rd1 g5 13. Bxe5 fxe5 14. Qe3 Be6 15. Nd2 h6 16. Nde4 Qb6 17. Qd3 O-O-O 18. Bg2 Nc5 19. Qxd8 Qxd8 20. Rxd8 Kxd8 21. Nxc5 Bxc5 22. Kd2 Bb3 23. Be4 Ke7 24. f3 Rd8 25. Bd3 a5 26. h4 Kd7 27. hxg5 hxg5 28. Rh7 Kc8 29. Rg7 Bf8 30. Rh7 Bb4 31. Rg7 Bxa4 32. Rxg5 e4 33. fxe4 Bb3 34. Kc1 Rh8 35. Bc2 Rh1 36. Kd2 Bf8 37. Rxa5 Bh6 38. Kd3 Be6 39. Ra8 Kd7 40. Rh8 b5 41. b3 Kd6 42. Nd1 Rh3 43. e3 Rh2 44. Nc3 Kc5 45. e5 Bf5 46. Ne4 Kb4 47. Bd1 Rh3 48. Bf3 Be6 49. g4 Rh4 50. Nd2 c5 51. Rh7 1/2-1/2

Unfortunately Michael Corallo lost again, this time to GM Elshan Moradiabad (2598). Michael had been having such a tremendous tournament that after losing back to back games he is still tied at +1, or 4 1/2 points, with those above named players, and will battle another GM, Vladimir Romanenko (2498) in the money round.

Sanjay Ghatti lost to Andrey Gorovets (2478) but still has an even score with 4 points.

Sanjay Ghatti (2024) vs Andrey Gorovets (2478)
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Qb6 5. Nb3 Nf6 6. Nc3 e6 7. Be3 Qc7 8. Be2 Bb4 9. f3 d5 10. O-O Bxc3 11. bxc3 dxe4 12. fxe4 Nxe4 13. Qd3 f5 14. Nc5 Nf6 15. Qc4 Nd5 16. Bf4 Nxf4 17. Rxf4 Ne5 18. Qa4 Kf7 19. Ne4 Qb6 20. Qd4 Rd8 21. Ng5 Kg6 22. Qxb6 axb6 23. Nf3 Nxf3 24. Bxf3 Kf6 25. Rb4 Rd6 26. a4 Bd7 27. Bxb7 Ra7 28. Bf3 b5 29. c4 Rxa4 30. Raxa4 bxa4 31. c5 a3 32. Rb1 a2 33. Ra1 Ra6 34. Bb7 Ra7 35. c6 Ke7 36. cxd7 Rxb7 37. Rxa2 Rxd7 38. c4 Kd6 39. Ra6 Ke5 40. Rc6 g5 41. Kf2 Rd2 42. Kf3 h5 43. h3 g4 44. hxg4 hxg4 45. Kg3 f4 46. Kxg4 Rxg2 47. Kf3 Rg3 48. Kf2 Rc3 49. Ke2 Re3 50. Kf2 Kd4 51. Rc8 Rc3 52. Re8 e5 0-1

The Frisco Kid drew with Joshua Colas (2116) and is at -1, with 3 1/2 points, needing a win tonight against Sam Copeland (2153) to finish with an even score.

Kazim Gulamali lost his penultimate round game and also has 3 1/2 points.

Nicolas D Checa (2219) vs FM Kazim Gulamali (2283)

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 d5 4. Nc3 dxc4 5. e3 a6 6. a4 c5 7. Bxc4 cxd4

The game ended here and this was displayed on the website:
“White won (rated game). Cellphone went off”

It is beyond my comprehension how such a thing could occur. Why any player would even have a cellphone after what happened to GM Nigel Short when he lost a game, even though his gizmo was turned off, because it made a sound to signal its battery was low, disrupting the tournament, and violating the FIDE rule against gizmos making sounds. No players should ever, under any circumstance, have a gizmo with them in or around the tournament hall because of the appearance of having such device gives because of the possibility of cheating by using a gizmo. All chess organizations should have banned gizmos years ago for just this reason. Please do not misunderstand me. I am not, and would never accuse Kazim of cheating. Having known him for at least a decade I would not believe it if he were ever accused of cheating because he is a gentleman. I hate to write this, but his play this tournament could be considered prima-facie evidence that he did not cheat. It is more than a little obvious that Kazim had what is now called a “Dierks” moment.

Reece Thompson lost in the penultimate round and still has 3 points, but will play the last round game trying to finish with a -1 score.

Kapil Chandran (2382) vs Reece Thompson (2087)

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 d6 3. Nf3 Nbd7 4. Nc3 c6 5. e4 e5 6. Be2 Be7 7. O-O O-O 8. Qc2 Re8 9. d5 a5 10. h3 Qc7 11. Be3 Nc5 12. Rfd1 Bd7 13. Rac1 cxd5 14. cxd5 Rec8 15. Nd2 Qb8 16. Bxc5 Rxc5 17. a4 Be8 18. Qb1 Nd7 19. Nb3 Rc8 20. Nb5 Rxc1 21. Rxc1 Bd8 22. Qc2 Bg5 23. Nc7 Bxc1 24. Nxa8 Be3 25. fxe3 Qxa8 26. Qc7 Qa7 27. Kf2 Nf6 28. Qd8 h6 29. Bb5 Kh7 30. Bxe8 Nxe4 31. Kf3 f5 32. Bd7 1-0
The schedule has been brutal as can be seen by the fact that 30% of the field will not play in the last round. The ones who do play will certainly be staggering at the finish line.

Dierks Bentley – What Was I Thinkin

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FM Kazim Gulamali vs GM Alex Shabalov

Some have asked why I do not annotate games. Each time I think of something the Discman wrote in an email, “Now any schmo with a smartphone can figure out the best move.” I figure most readers have access to a strong program and would refute most of the analysis of this schmo. In an email exchange with the Frisco Kid he wondered if he and Kazim Gulamali could have been GM’s now if they had had the right life experiences at the proper time, mentioning the work of Dean Keith Simonton, recommending I read anything I can find. I replied, “I often wondered out loud at the House of Pain what kinda player Kazim woulda turned out to be if he had been trained by IM Boris Kogan.” Kazim and his father, Mumtaz Yusef, were regulars at the House of Pain. Saturday nights meant Kung Pow Wow for Mumtaz and less spicy fare for the rest of the House. Mumtaz helped keep the House from going hungry. Kazim was called the “Little Grandmaster” for a reason. He understood chess on a different level even when young, and we all knew it. Kazim was always a gentleman, even when still considered a child. He was an adult as a player long before society considered him an adult.
This is the game score of Kazim’s game with GM Shabalov. I urge you to go over the game without a program and then return to the notes, kept while the game was ongoing and cleaned up a little for publication

FM Kazim Gulamali vs GM Alexander Shabalov
2014 World Open Rd 6
1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.e5 c5 4.c3 Nc6 5.Nf3 Bd7 6.Be2 Rc8 7.O-O a6 8.a3 Nge7 9.Bd3 Ng6 10.g3 f6 11.Re1 Be7 12.Qc2 Kf7 13.Qe2 Rf8 14.h4 Kg8 15.h5 Nh8 16.Bf4 cxd4 17.cxd4 fxe5 18.dxe5 Be8 19.h6 g5 20.Nxg5 Bxg5 21.Qg4 Nf7 22.Qxe6 Nd4 23.Qg4 Nxh6 0-1

I questioned 9 Bd3. My thinking was that if a student showed this game I would tell him the move violates the principle of moving the same piece again before development is complete. The move 9 dxc5 suggests itself. If then 9…Ng6 10 b4 would follow.
When Kazim played 12 Qc2 I thought back to a conversation I had with IM Boris Kogan after showing him a game of mine that began 1 e4 e6 2 d4 d5 3 e5 c5 4 Nf3 Nc6 5 Bd3 cxd4 6 0-0. In that game I had a chance to capture exf6 but eschewed the move. Black was able to move his pawn to f5 on the next move, leaving me with a lonesome pawn on e5, while the Black position was rock solid. In my game Black would have had to take on f6 with the g-pawn, leaving the Black King, “Drafty,” according to Boris. Although not the same exact position I cannot help wondering if Kazim should play 12 exf6.
With the above in mind, I wondered why Shabba did not play 12…f5.
I was flummoxed after Kazim played 13 Qe2. I realize that after IM John Watson published his stupendous, and award winning, book, “Rules? What rules?” (The name is actually, “Secrets of Modern Chess Strategy” and it was a classic when it was published), every player is trying to find the exception to the rule, and Black just moved his King, so maybe the Queen move is called for, but I would still take the pawn, playing exf6, because if I do not Black can play 13…cxd4 14 cxd4 fxe5 15 dxe5 and White has that lonesome e-pawn. So naturally Shabalov plays 13…Rf8. Hey, he’s the GM!
14 h4 is aggressive and it is a natural move with the Knight on g6, but I am playing exf6. In lieu of 16 Bf4 I am still playing pawn take pawn.
22 Qxe6 Oh no, Mr. Bill! This position is reminisce of some of the positions I had when taking my first chess steps. The attack would be raging but when I needed more troops they would be, like Union General George McClellan’s, languishing in the rear. At the Battle of Shapsburg in 1862, the bloodiest day of the War For Southern Independence, “McClellan refusing to act even though he had two full corps that had not seen action.” (From “The Grand Design,” by Donald Stoker) The move has got to be 22 Nbd2, with Nf3 threatened. I rejected taking the pawn because in many games I have seen things turn out badly when the attacker settled for only a lowly pawn. It may not be correct to take a pawn like that even if you put the King in check. This gives Black a move, whereas developing the Knight gives Black something to worry about. I am reminded of the book by FM Charley Hertan, “Forcing Moves.” White needs to force his opponent to react, not allow him to act.
Today it would be said that Kazim “Went down over three pawns,” when he played QxP. Back in my day one of the Road Warriors would have said, “He let go of the rope.” In showing one of his games, LM Brian McCarthy said, after making a dubious move, “I let a hand slip offa the rope here, but he allowed me to grab hold again with this move, and after his next questionable move I hit him with this move and now I was climbing again!” Translate that to today’s computer speak and it just does not have the same ring.
After checking the opening with the Chessbase database and 365Chess.com I, too, allowed a program to do its thing. I am happy to report the machine proved that Boris knew what he was talking about. If I understood this particular kind of position better than the combatants it is only because of the fact that when Hulk Kogan talked, I listened.
Kazim had what we call a Dierks Bentley, “What Was I Thinking” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PMQxLyGyT-s) moment when he played QxP. We have all had a “Dierks” moment. I sure would have liked to have seen the game that would have followed the Knight move that, as the Legendary Georgia Ironman is so fond of saying, “Connects the Rooks!”