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Old August 16th 10, 08:59 PM posted to,,,alt.chess,
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Default Sam's Games from the 2010 US Open Championship

On Aug 15, 11:12*am, samsloan wrote:
I started off very badly in the 2010 US Open Chess Championship (and
Jerry Hanken Memorial), losing to or drawing with players rated far
below me (and lucky to do that). I recovered or got back into practice
somewhat near the end and had an outside chance to win a smal money
prize. However, I lost in the last round and ended with an even score
of 4.5 - 4.5 .

My most interesting game was against International Master Anthony
Saidy. I sacrificed a pawn in the opening and felt I had a reasonable
game. Saidy said that I lost the game with 32. Kg3, retreating my
king. Had I kept my king on Kf4, he could not have penetrated and a
draw was a likely result, he said.

My best game was against Chris Keefe where I refuted his Danish
Gambit. This is a game that every Danish player should study because I
always win with the black side of this opening. Billy Colias, a young
master at the Manhattan Chess Club, used to play this against me and I
beat him every time, even though he was much stronger and higher rated
than I was. These were seven-minute games in the Manhattan Rapids.

In my game against Holly McRoberts, she fell into a trap that weaker
players often fall into against me. I cannot tell you how many games I
have won like this.

After the game, I informed her that she is probably a distant cousin
of mine as my great-great-grandmother was Elizabeth McRobert
(1812-1879) from Stranraer, Scotland and the name is not common even

My best result was against Ronald Eng, a young near master rated 2164.
It looked like I was losing but I managed to hold a draw in a tricky

My most disgusting result was in my last round. I seemed to have an
outside remote chance at a money prize if I could win with Black
against a higher rated opponent. However, Randall Hough psyched me out
by saying that my opponent was up in his room burning the midnight oil
preparing for my Damiano's Defense. As a result, I chickened out.
Instead of playing my strong and solid Damiano's Defense (1. e4 e5 2.
Nf3 f6 3. Nxe5 fxe5 4. Qh5+ Ke7 5. Qxe5+ Kf7 6. Bc4+ d5 7. Bxd5+ Kg6
8. d4 Bd6) I played the Latvian Gambit which I used to play years ago
before I discovered the Damiano's Defense. I had forgotten all about
the Latvian Gambit and I mixed up my lines, but I survived with a
playable game until I hung my Queen. I forgot that the reason Black
plays 5. .... Qf7 rather than 5. .... Qg6 in several variations is to
stop Be2-h5 winning the queen. I fell right into that and this ruined
what might have been a successful result. Had I played 11. .... dxe4
instead of 11. .... Nxe4 my game was quite OK I believe.

It would have been better certainly, but doesn't he end up winning
that pawn, which in the end, you can't win back, for example:

11... dxe4 12. Nc4! Bc7 13. Ne5 Bxe5 14. dxe5 Bh3 15. Rf2 Ng4 16. Bxg4
Bxg4 17. Qd4 Nd7 18. Nc3 Bf5 19. Bf4 O-O 20. Re1 Qe6 21. Nxe4 Bxe4 22.
Qxa2?? 23. e6!

But it looks like a long road ahead if you play 22.... Rae8, and I
always found the Latvian had certain "resiliencies" that made winning
the pawn up endgame tough.

Do you think he would have found the proper responses to 11... Qxe4? I
guess 12. c4 is too obvious a rejoinder, and the resulting play not
hard to find, even OTB. But it would have mixed it up.

Sam, have you ever tried the line 3. ...Nc6?! in response to 3. Nxe5?
It of course has a terrible record in the databases, but it seems - at
least based on my experience, to provide positions white, even when
"winning," can mess up pretty badly. I know it isn't good but it can't
be as bad as the Damiano. The Elephant Gambit is another one that
is good only as a surprise weapon.....

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