Friday, November 25, 2011

Hou YiFan wins World Championship

Chinese prodigy, Hou YiFan , won the women's world championship against challenger Humpy Koneru. Yi Fan took a three point lead after drawing the eight game. With only two games left in the ten game match, Yi Fan retains the title. The remaining two games will not be played.

Full report from Chessbase here

Monday, November 21, 2011

SEA Games chess over

Today is the last round of the men and women standard event. The women and men's blitz event also starts after the completion of the standard event.

Standard event

There was two quick draws between GM Cao Sang and GM Wesley So which lasted only four moves. GM So has won the silver with this draw. GM Cao Sang ties for third with

The game between Indonesian GM Megaranto Susanto and Myanmar Kway Ling Naing lasted only a little longer , eight moves to be exact. Megaranto wins the gold with this draw. FM Kway and GM Cao Sang had a play-off to determine the bronze.  Kway surprisingly won the armageddon and thus takes the bronze.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

SEA Games - Men and Women Standard chess

The situation in the men's and women's standard chess is more or less clear where the gold is concerned. GM Megaranto agreed a draw with IM Jimmy Liew. Tomorrow he has white pieces against Myanmar player Kyaw Ling Naing and a draw will be sufficient for the gold medal.

FM Kyaw has a chance for a medal after drawing against GM Cao Sang. The final round will decide the bronze and maybe the silver as well.

Vietnam takes gold in rapid chess

Vietnamese players snatched gold in both the men's and women's rapid event.  GM Le Quang Liem won his second gold and WGM Nguyenn Pham Le Thao  won the women's event. Indonesia had a silver through the surprising FM Hamdani Rudin. GM  Nguyen Ngoc Truong Song took the bronze.

Truong Song needed to win the last game against the lower rated FM Kasmiran. Surprisingly the position reached a Q+B versus Q+B where the Vietnamese could not avoid perpetual check. Since he already had the bronze , he continued to play on and ended up losing a bishop ending.

The following position was reached in GM Barbosa Oliver against Sumant Subramaniam in the final round. Sumant was not having a good tournament and has lost a pawn. However some resourceful play and time pressure and we have the diagram

Megaranto leads

Indonesian GM Megaranto takes the lead in the SEA Games Men's Standard event. Last night, he created an upset over Philippines GM Wesley So.

The men's standard only has six players and contested over a five round round-robin tournament. A single loss can be the end of the gold medal. Megaranto should now win the gold barring any upset as he needs a single point from the remaining two rounds. A tie with Wesley So will be in the Indonesian's favour due to the personal encounter tie-breaker.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Yee Weng and Najiha wins bronze!

It was a nerve wrecking final round for the Malaysian contingent. Malaysia needed to tie Indonesia's score today to win the bronze on tie-breaks. While Indonesia had the gold medallists Vietnam, we had the easier match against Myanmar.

Yee Weng drew quickly after reaching an opposite-colored bishop position with all major pieces on the board. He soon regretted the decision as Najiha had pawn advantage in her game but ran very short of time. Even with two extra pawns in a Rook and Bishop versus Rook and Knight ending, things were very difficult as she had less than two minutes at some crucial moments. Nevertheless, Najiha managed to convert the game after more than eighty moves

Vietnam took the gold and Philippines the silver.

In the blindfold event, Vietnam's super GM Le Quang Liem managed to overtake Filipino Paul Gomez to take the gold leaving Gomez the silver. Another Filipino GM , Laylo Darwin was the bronze medallist.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Malaysia loses to Philippines

In the fourth round of the Mixed event,both IM Lim Yee Weng and WFM Najiha lost their games to the more experienced Filipinos. This means Vietnam will take the gold and Philippines the silver leaving the bronze for the other countries.

Malaysia meets Myanmar in the fifth and last round and needs a win to confirm a bronze medal. As I write, Yee Weng is hard at work , preparing to win tomorrow. Much depends on him as a win will ease the pressure on the young Najiha, though we also expect her to beat her opponent tomorrow.

My fortunes in the blindfold continue to slide downward , losing both seventh and eight rounds. Mok drew both games.

The rest of the team, IM Mas, Sumant Subramaniam, Camilia, Li Ting  and Nabila has joined us from Malaysia. They will have a free day tomorrow as their events only starts on the Thursday,17th of November.

SEA Games all results

Below are the current standings of all events currently going on in Palembang, Indonesia. They are blindfold, mixed team and Asean chess.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Malaysia shocks Indonesia!

In the on-going SEA Games mixed pair event, Malaysia has just registered a shock 1.5 - 0.5  win over Indonesia in Round 3. The mixed event is played over two boards with one men and one women. Our team is out-titled and out-rated but our fighting team did the seemingly impossible to win the match. Indonesia had their top men and women , GM Megaranto Susanto and WGM Irine Sukandar in the line-up.

IM Lim Yee Weng was the first to finish and he beat Indonesia's top player GM Megaranto Susanto.

GM Megaranto - IM Lim Yee Weng
White resigned after 1. Rf3 Qxf3 as the black king will capture the white a-pawn and queen his own pawn.

In the other game, our Najiha drew with WGM Irine Sukandar. Najiha exchanged all pieces to reach a rook vs rook ending with both sides having three king-side pawns. The Indonesian conceded the draw to give Malaysia the match win.

Malaysia now has two match wins and one loss. The mixed event is based on match points so there is a good chance to catch a bronze medal now. The remaining opponents are Myanmar and Philippines.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

SEA Games player list

Three events that have yet to begin are the Blitz, Rapid and Standard.

One thing worth noting is that the the other countries like Philippines, Vietnam and of course Indonesia have all their players already here, even those events that have not started yet. These players who have not started their events get to enjoy the atmosphere , lend support to their comrades who are already playing and generally get aclimatize to the environment. But for Malaysia our players will only start to arrive on the 15th.

SEA Games Blindfold, Round 4

Results of Round 3

IM Mok Tze Meng  0.5-0.5 GM John Paul Gomez
IM Lioe Dede 1 - 0 GM Darwin Laylo
GM Nguyen Anh Dung  0-1 IM Purnama Tirta Chandra
IM Myo Naing 1-0 IM Jimmy Liew
GM Zaw Win Lay 0 -1 GM Le Quang Liem

Results of Round 4
The surprise of the round was Vietnam's Super GM Le Quang Liem loss to GM Darwin Layo

GM Darwin Laylo 1- 0 GM Le Quang Liem
IM Jimmy Liew  0.5-0.5  GM Zaw Win Lay
GM John Paul Gomez 0.5 - 0.5 GM Nguyen Anh Dung
IM Purnama Tirta Chandra 1-0  IM Myo Naing
IM Lioe Dede 0.50.5  IM Mok Tze Meng

Standings after Round 4

3.5 points
IM Purnama Tirta Chandra
3.0 points
GM John Paul Gomez 

2.5 points
GM Le Quang Liem

2.0 points
IM Jimmy Liew
GM Nguyen Anh Dung
GM Darwin Laylo

1.5 ppoints
IM Mok Tze Meng
 IM Lioe Dede
 GM Zaw Win Lay
 IM Myo Naing

GM Le Quang Liem lost to GM Darwin Laylo

IM Mok drew with IM Lioe Dede

GM Zaw Win Lay drew with IM Jimmy Liew

SEA Games Blindfold, Round 2

There are ten players in this event from five countries. We will play a round robin of nine round with two rounds per day at 3:00 P.M. and 5:00 PM. In the first round, players from same country are paired. The only players to fight it out were Malaysia and Philippines. All others drew quickly. Results of round one

GM John Paul Gomez 1 - 0 GM Darwin Laylo
IM Lioe Dede 0.5-0.5 IM Purnama Tirta Chandra
IM Mok Tze Meng 0 - 1 IM Jimmy Liew
GM Nguyen Anh Dung 0.5 - 0.5 GM Le Quang Liem
IM Myo Naing 0.5 - 0.5 GM Zaw Win Lay

Results of Round 2

GM Darwin Laylo 1- 0 Zaw Win Lay
GM Le Quang Liem 1-0  IM Myo Naing
IM Jimmy Liew 0.5 - 0.5 GM Nguyen Anh Dung
IM Purnama Tirta Chandra 0.5 0.5  IM Mok Tze Meng
GM John Paul Gomez 1 - 0  IM Lioe Dede

In this type of event there are bound to be
some incidents. In round two , IM Mok claimed a three-fold repetition draw which opponent disputed. Even after the arbiter had determined that the claim was valid,  the Indonesian master still did not agree. Arbiter actually had to verbally warn him that the decision was final.

There are a few interesting rules in this totally new event. The time control is twenty minutes with twenty second increments from move one.

For serious rule infractions a player will be given a yellow card similar as in football. After two yellow cards, the third infraction will be a red card which will result in the loss of the game.

Players sit at a empty chess board. They write their move on a piece of paper in long form notation (e.g e2-e4). Doing otherwise will result in a verbal warning. The second time the player will be shown a yellow card. The player on the move shows the move to the opponent and passes it to the game controller (there are two controllers for each game). The controllers verify the moves and play it on a chess board at the side (not visible to the players). An illegal move results in a yellow card.

Players are not allowed to get up from the board until the game is over. This is actually to prevent them from getting a view of the actual position on the chess board besides them though I doubt anyone actually would want to in view of the short time control.

Standings after Round 2

2.0 points
GM John Paul Gomez 

1.5 points
IM Jimmy Liew
IM Purnama Tirta Chandra
GM Nguyen Anh Dung
GM Le Quang Liem

1.0 points

GM Darwin Laylo

0.5 points
IM Mok Tze Meng
 IM Lioe Dede
 GM Zaw Win Lay
  IM Myo Naing

Round 3 pairings.

IM Lioe Dede vs. GM Darwin Laylo
IM Mok Tze Meng vs. GM John Paul Gomez
GM Nguyen Anh Dung  vs. IM Purnama Tirta Chandra
IM Myo Naing vs IM Jimmy Liew
GM Zaw Win Lay vs. GM Le Quang Liem

IM Jimmy Liew - IM Mok, Jimmy wins

GM Nguyen Anh Dung - IM Jimmy Liew, draw

IM Mok - IM Purnama, draw

Friday, November 11, 2011

Arrived in Palembang

The first team members,  Najiha, IM Mok, Haslinda, Gregory and myself ,  left KL International Airport yesterday afternoon. Our flight schedule was to Jakarta and then switch to a local flight to Palembang. Arrived in Palembang around 7:00 PM tired and sweaty.

We are staying at the Hotel Swarna Dwipa. Last night dinner was only so-so , hopefully things will improve or maybe we will get used to Indonesian food :)

The opening ceremony will be scheduled for tonight, while the first event will begin tomorrow. For the blindfold event, both Mok and myself are competing. At the moment we have no idea how the event will be conducted as this is the first time that blindfold event is held.

Internet access is patchy so I doubt if I will be doing much blogging. Haslinda will have more regular updates and results at her blog.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Things aren't always what they seem

Two traveling angels stopped to spend the night in the home of a wealthy family. The family was rude and refused to let the angels stay in the mansion's guest room. Instead the angels were given a space in the cold basement. As they made their bed on the hard floor, the older angel saw a hole in the wall and repaired it. 

When the younger angel asked why, the older angel replied, "Things aren't always what they seem".
The next night the pair came to rest at the house of a very poor, but very hospitable farmer and his wife. After sharing what little food they had the couple let the angels sleep in their bed where they could have a good night's rest.
When the sun came up the next morning the angels found the farmer and his wife in tears. Their only cow, whose milk had been their sole income, lay dead in the field. The younger angel was infuriated and asked the older angel "how could you have let this happen!? The first man had everything, yet you helped him," she accused. "The second family had little but was willing to share everything, and you let their cow die."

"Things aren't always what they seem," the older angel replied.
"When we stayed in the basement of the mansion, I noticed there was gold stored in that hole in the wall. Since the owner was so obsessed with greed and unwilling to share his good fortune, I sealed the wall so he wouldn't find it. Then last night as we slept in the farmer's bed, the angel of death came for his wife. I told him to take the cow instead. Things aren't always what they seem."
Sometimes this is exactly what happens when things don't turn out the way we think they should. Just trust that every outcome is always to your advantage. You might not realize it until much later.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Stories beyond the board - Back again

After some four months he is back again. I had been hopeful that the Welfare Department had taken him away but apparently that was not the case. I wonder where he has been all these while.

He seemed happy to see me again. I gave him some food this morning. Noted that he is wearing the jeans I gave him months ago.

Maybe he has a family looking for him. If you know him or his family, please inform them. He can be found near Menara Milenium in Jalan Damanlela.