Fédération québécoise des échecs
Fédération québécoise des échecs
Fédération québécoise des échecs

Bob Armstrong - day 9

Blog # 8 - Day 7/ Rd. 8 – Friday, July 25


1. This blog is duplicate posted: a) on the FQE Canadian Open website ("Follow the tournament"); b) on the CMA Chesstalk. But the FQE website has the great advantage that it includes a game-viewer. So my Rd. 2 game, and that of Mario’s, that are in the text, can be immediately played over. The URL for the blog there is: http://echecsmontreal.ca/co/suivre_en.html .
2. The advantage of the Chesstalk site, is that there is capacity for anyone to comment and discuss any CO matters. The URL is:

Starting the Day Off Right – Wee Hours of the Morning

After midnight Friday, I continued work on the draft Blog # 7(covering Thursday) and finished it, except for the game 7 analysis. Mario prepped for his Rd. 8 opponent. I went to bed at 1:00 PM.


I awoke at 6:30 AM – a very long sleep for me, especially during tournaments. So I checked e-mails, posted on the 4 FB chess sites I manage/co-manage, and looked at the other 2 non-chess FB pages I manage. I reviewed my almost complete draft of the blog # 7, and made minor revisions. Then I continued analyzing the Rd. 7 game for blog # 7.
Mario got up about 7:15 AM. as I was getting my blog # 7 sent out to FQE, and posted on Chesstalk. Then we went down to the food court for breakfast (not Timmies or McD’s!)
When we came back, I found that Jack Maguire of Toronto, who I know from the Annex CC where I also play, was taking umbrage at my mild criticism of the Dutch Defence in my Blog # 7. I and my trusty researcher came up with a bit of a defence, and so I posted. But Jack pointed out that statistics can lie. He did force me to re-evaluate the “source” I was using to bolster my case. So I then got into the difference between anecdotal collection of human results, and the pure chess theology of computers, demanding the perfect move each time (we humans are a bit sloppy on this front). Jack noted that I play humans….hmmm.
This all tired my official blog researcher out, and the next thing I know, on work time, there he is sacked out on his bed. So I decided to go out for a walk, and get some fresh air, before I commenced working on this Blog # 8. When I came back, Mario was up.


At noon, I was totally zonked…unusual. So I hit the sack for about an hour. When I got up I could hear the laptops whimpering…like two dogs that knew they were about to be let alone in the house for a few hours. They had heard Mario and I discussing going down to the hotel restaurant for lunch …. My treat to my steadfast (well….sometimes) official Can. Op. Blog Researcher. I think I mentioned that in addition to free tournament entry and playing up fee for doing the blog for FQE, they gave me a nice little gift of a credit for the hotel restaurant. So it was almost enough to cover the two of us going there. So down we went about 1:30 PM, hearing the laptop whimpering in the background. We had been told the food there was very good…we both agree – a very nice lunch. Afterwards we went for a walk. We saw the “Vieux Montreal” sign, and decided now that we had escaped from the laptop/alcove prison, we should do the touristy thing. So down we went. It is impressive! We went down to the waterfront and stood at the edge of the St. Lawrence. It was a beautiful day…sunny, not too hot, with a strong, cool wind. Lots of people; lots of benches; interesting streets everywhere.
On the way back we came up through Chinatown on St. Laurent.
On the way back west on Rene Levesque Blvd Ouest, we had an experience that made us very proud….we gave directions to 2 French-speaking gentleman (hesitant English). They were looking for an address on the street. So we were able to explain to the that St. Laurent was the centre for ouest and est, and that the numbers rise on both sides going away from it. They were quite pleased, and Mario and I felt we had thereby met today our good Samaritan quota.
At University, we met the President of the FQE, Bernard Labadie, who I had met earlier in the tournament, when we had chatted for quite a while. He provided me with some sympathy for the fact that I had ended up in the crosshairs of Louis Morin, who I believe edits the FQE magazine, on my own annotation system, the “Comprehensive Annotation System”. I assured him that Louis had been very gentle with me. In the past on Chesstalk, I have been treated much more roughly for some of my “outside the box” thinking…it sort of felt like being drawn and quartered. He went to the playing hall, and Mario and I returned to our room, quite happy (I had advised him a while ago that there was a recent medical/scientific study that established that walking stimulated the brain in such a way as to generate feelings of happiness, and we had had a good 2 hour walk). Back to the blog…oh joy…fun, fun, fun!
At 5:00 PM Mario and I decided we had not had dessert at lunch, and so went down to get a decadent cinnamon bun. Then back to the “slave alcove”. Before the round, we then went downstairs to get a coffee to take to Rd. 8 (second-last round) which began at 6:00 PM.

Round 8

I was paired up a bit. But, as I have mentioned a number of times previously, it should have been more. The arbiters were, unfortunately, still using my higher FQE rating for pairing, rather than my lower CFC rating (which I have unsuccessfully tried to get corrected now three times – I’ve given up – sorry to repeat from prior blogs, but I really think it should have been corrected by now). I lost – 2 blunders (sigh).
After the game, I met Rahul Gangoli of my Scarborough CC, and we talked about my game annotation system and the strong push-back I was getting. We discussed how it might be made more acceptable, given some constructive suggestions I’ve received.
Then, in case there should be a glitch in standings/pairings posting on the internet before midnight, I started manually collecting the results I need for my blog from the hard copy results posting sheet. I then went up to work on this blog # 8, and enter and analyze the game. Mario came in then, and he had won a “garbage game” that he really doesn’t want to see the light of day. He showed me it, and I agreed it was better buried! But it now puts him over 50% (4 ½ pts.)
So I went up and down a number of times, to collect stats and take a quick look at games in progress still.
Mario came in at 10:00 PM, having won. So Mario now has 4 ½ pts.(50%).
One time I was downstairs, Mario and Omar Shah (who had lost – has 5 pts.) showed up and wanted to go to dinner. I was able to get my last stats and join them (Five Guys have great burgers).
On the way back, Omar left to catch the subway. Mario and I came up to the room about midnight.

My Games

(Because new readers come to the blog from time to time, I want them to have the following information, and so I am repeating the template of it each day – I’d ask the daily readers of the blog to tolerate the repetition)

As I’ve said in prior year’s blogs, I like to think “class” games, like those in the U 2000 section, down in the middle of the bowels of the tournament, have some interest. I believe in some ways they are more educational to class players than GM games, if properly annotated. They are understandable, because we all think similarly – GM moves are many times incomprehensible to us class players.
For years now, I’ve used a chess website, Chess5 (http://www.chess5.com ), as my own personal chess games blog and back up storage site – I have gotten to know the owner/administrator Eydun, quite well over the years. I introduced Canada to his website, after I first saw it. Canada is now one of the main posters to this on-line databank. I post all my games, using what I call my “Comprehensive Annotation System (CAS)”, hoping that this makes them even more helpful to viewers. In prior years, this is where I have posted my Open games for those interested to play over. Click on the heading link “public games”, and you get a list of games posted this month so far. There is an option to go back and look at posted games from prior months. In past years, my Can. Op. games have been posted there during the tournament. But I am not doing that this tournament, since I am now blogging on the FQE website, and there now is a gameviewer in my blogs.
My games may not be dramatic, but I am told I am a somewhat messy (I prefer the phrase “somewhat unorthodox”) and adventurous player (I lose a lot!), and that my games, win or lose, are often interesting to play over (some friends say, so they’ll learn how not to play chess…sigh). However in this tournament so far, I must admit I have played quite conservatively, even passively, in the first three games (all losses). My Rd. 5 & 7 games showed more spirit – though only one was a win. The Rd. 6 game is kind of messy, and I never really was in it. But in any event, the viewer will decide. The Rd. 8 game is marred by 2 blunders.

The 4 U 2000 Leaders Post Rd. 8

1. – 7 pts. (Undefeated) – 1 player – Germaine, Michel (1947 – QC);
2/ 3. 6 ½ pts. – 2 players – Weston, Paul (1963 – QC ); Pinho, Tiago (1889 – Portugal);
4/ 8. – 6 pts. – 5 players – Barko, Maxim (1887 – QC); Gunapalan, David (1872 – QC); Kajan Thanabalachandran (1798 – ON); Petit, Raymond (1789 – QC); Pulfer, Luke (1784 – BC).

Our section started with 13 top players who I termed the “favourites”. They were all in the 1900’s. But a number of them were not in the full Can. Op.; they were only in the Mini-COC and so they should not have been in our favourites group, which should have been only 7 players. 2 of them are now among the leaders set out above. Here are the true remaining 5 non-leader favourites and their scores – I kind of like to keep tabs on them since, though they may not be doing well early on, they are quite capable of suddenly again rising to the top:
1. Shah, Omar – 1999 – ON – 5 pts.
2. Have, Didier - 1992 – QC – 4 ½ pts.
3. Pomerantz, Daniel – 1937 – 5 ½ pts.
4. Chang, Michael – 1912 – 5 ½ pts.
5. Sarra – Bournet, Marc – 1911 – QC – 5 pts.

My Round 8 Game

The time control is 40/90 min. + SD/30 min, with a 30 sec increment from move 1.
Here it is – it is annotated using my own “Comprehensive Annotation System (CAS), Fritz, and my own annotations. My system has been constructively criticized as a consequence of being highlighted in this year’s blog. And I am making some of the suggested changes tonight in annotating my Rd. 8 game. It is just a start, but I would like to make it more user-friendly, dependent on the time I have available.  I do hope you enjoy playing it over, and that much of the analysis, particularly tactical, is instructive and sound. As I said, this is certainly to be considered a somewhat flawed game, but for what it is worth, here it is (I now have 1 win; 6 losses; 1 forfeit):

Armstrong, Robert J. (1645) - St-Cyr, Xavier

[pgn][Event "Canadian Open (U 2000)"] [Site "?"] [Date "2014.07.25"] [Round "8"] [White "Armstrong, Robert J."] [Black "St.-Cyr, Xavier"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "A52"] [WhiteElo "1645"] [BlackElo "1730"] [Annotator "Armstrong, Robert J."] [PlyCount "81"] [EventDate "2014.07.25"] [EventType "swiss"] 1. d4 $11 {0.15 (based on my initial "researcher" data, and Egis Zeromskis' request that I check more carefully my initial judgment that white had a "slight" advantage with 1.d4; I am modifyinig it 'til I can further check it on a better program and hardware)} Nf6 2. c4 e5 $6 $14 {Budapest Gambit - the computer is not saying it is unplayable, only that it leads to a valuation less than can be achieved by more standard defences like ...e6, which keep equality (going for a Nimzo-Indian or a Bogo-Indian)} (2... e6 $11) 3. dxe5 Ng4 4. e4 $6 $11 {I had not played against the Budapest for years, and have no memory of most openings I don't play often. I thought he will know all the lines, so I should just play solid and get into a somewhat normal, even if equal, middlegame. So I just played what I considered a classical move.} (4. Bf4 Nc6 5. Nf3 Bb4+ 6. Nc3 Qe7 $14) 4... Nxe5 5. Nf3 Bb4+ 6. Bd2 Bxd2+ 7. Nbxd2 Nbc6 8. Nxe5 Nxe5 9. Nf3 Nxf3+ 10. Qxf3 O-O 11. Bd3 d6 12. O-O Bd7 13. Rfe1 Qg5 14. Rad1 f6 {I achieved my opening goal, in one I didn't know, of getting into at least an equal middlegame} 15. Bc2 $4 $17 {Chess Blindness and old age...my only excuses for not seeing this coming at all. And even when I wondered about the odd ...f6 move. I will lose the exchange. In fact, at the time, I was so discouraged with myself that I considered resigning immediately. But I came to play chess. And in the early going, being down an exchange is not necessarily decisive at the class level. If I can get a P, the game will again be relatively equal. Xavier gets a "clear" advantage} (15. e5 fxe5 16. Qd5+ Kh8 17. Qxb7 Bg4 $11) 15... Bg4 16. Qb3 {makes a few threats in compensation for losing the exchange. The g7 P is attacked and not defended, and there is a pawn-push discovered check.} Bxd1 17. Rxd1 {Xavier is up the exchange} Qc5 {to prevent me pushing c5} 18. Rd5 Qb6 $6 $15 {loses a P when he need not} (18... Qc6 19. Qb4 Rf7 $17) 19. Rb5 Qc6 20. Rxb7 {Xavier is now up the exchange, but I have a P compensation. I now felt like I still had chances to win this game.} Kh8 21. Rb5 $6 $17 (21. g3 a6 22. Qb4 a5 $15) 21... a6 22. Rh5 g6 23. Rh6 Kg7 24. Qh3 Rh8 25. b3 Qc5 26. Rh4 Rad8 {I've been managing to hold the status quo, though I'm quite a bit behind at the moment} 27. Rf4 $6 $19 {- 2.13 Xavier gets a "winning" advantage} (27. Qd3 Qa5 28. g3 Rhe8 $17) 27... Qa3 { threatening checkmate, as well at the same time, attacking the B and R simultaneously} 28. Qf3 {attacking the f6P to give him something to consider, as well as setting up the defence of the two pieces, and a block for the check} Qb2 29. Bd3 Qxa2 {Xavier is now up the exchange} 30. Bf1 {it may get pinned, but at least it won't be in the vulnerable position of having to be defended by the Q while pinned.} Qb2 31. e5 {I had calculated (well mis-calculated) that this was winning. I had thought the pawn was untakable, all three ways, and that by-passing it also was not good. What I missed was his ability to force an exchange of rooks before I can accomplish anything. So all it is, is an equal exchange of material, which further disadvantages me, since I have less material left with which to try to make progress.} dxe5 32. Rxf6 Rhf8 33. Rxf8 Rxf8 {that exchange accomplished nothing but to dig myself into a deeper hole.} 34. Qe3 Qd4 35. Qxd4 $2 $19 {- 4.96} (35. Qe1 c5 36. h4 e4 $19 {- 4.19}) 35... exd4 36. Bd3 $2 $19 {- 6.37} (36. Be2 Rb8 37. Bd1 Re8 $19 {- 5.38}) 36... c5 $2 $19 {- 5.38} (36... Rb8 37. Bc2 a5 $19 {- 6.21}) 37. Kf1 Re8 $2 $19 {- 4. 24 though not the best move, it accomplishes the significant ending feat of blocking the white K from getting over to the passed P} (37... Rb8 38. Bc2 d3 39. Bxd3 Rxb3 $19 {- 5.75}) 38. f3 $2 $19 {- 7.49} (38. Bc2 Kf6 39. g3 Re7 $19 {- 6.13}) 38... Re3 39. Bc2 d3 $19 {- 8.54 I resigned. I must lose material (P) and cannot win the passed P.} 40. Bd1 d2 41. Kf2 {- 12.17} (41. Be2 $2 Rxb3 42. Kf2 Rb1 {- 18.23}) 0-1[/pgn]

In the Wee Hours of Saturday Morning

At midnight Saturday, I was finishing the text of the Blog # 8, and doing the Game 8 annotating. My goal was to try to get it out early this morning, since we check out later this morning. We’ll see if I can stay awake to complete it. I worked on the blog ‘til 2:30 AM …..and completed both the text and the analyzed game! I then sent it to FQE (Roman). Then I posted it on Chesstalk. Mission accomplished!

The U 2000 Leaders’ Rd. 9 (Final) Pairings (top 18)

Round 9 on 2014/07/26 at 11h00


My Rd. 9 Pairing

38 30  Armstrong Robert J. 1845 2  2  Gao Christine 1587 91

The Top Section Leaders After Rd. 8

First prize is $ 4,000. There are 42 registered players (one shown actually in U 2400).
Here are the Leaders:

1/ 2. - 5 ½ pts. – 2 players

GM Van Kampen, Robin (2636 – Netherlands)

GM Ghaem-Maghami, Ehsan (2586 – Iran)

3/ 5. – 5 ½ pts.

GM Tiviakov, Sergey (2656 – Netherlands)

GM Kovalyov, Anton (2636 – Canada – top FIDE-rated Canadian, playing for Canada)


GM Moradiabadi, Elshan (2586 – Iran)

The Top Section Leaders’ Rd. 9 Pairings

Round 9 on 2014/07/26 at 11



Unfortunately, the website format FQE uses, does not allow for any comments, questions, etc. concerning the blog material. This is why it is being duplicate posted on the Chess ‘n Math Association national chess discussion board, Chesstalk. There this can be done. So, I'd like again to invite everyone to join into the discussion on Chesstalk by making comments, suggestions, questions, constructive criticisms  , etc. Anything to do with the Can. Open is welcome. I will try to respond on Chesstalk if that seems appropriate. And I am open to doing this for a short while after the tournament Rd. 9 is finished. I will be doing a Blog # 9, covering Saturday, likely to be posted Sunday afternoon. I may well post alast “After the Tournament” Blog # 10 as well on Monday.

Bob Armstrong, the Hapless CAS Inventor 

Copyright © 2024
Fédération québécoise des échecs
Développement et intégration / Richard Duguay
Copyright © 2024
Fédération québécoise des échecs
Copyright © 2024
Fédération québécoise des échecs
Développement et intégration
Richard Duguay
Développement et intégration
Richard Duguay