Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Became Runner in North American Open Chess Tournament 2013 in Las Vegas

I just have had a nice spring of tournaments at the end of 2013. First I was joint runner up in Tuesday Night Marathon Fall by defeating the then tournament leader Oleg Shakhnazarov.Then during Christmas break, I played in North American Open, Las Vegas and became sloe runner up in Under 1900 section bagging couple of thousand dollars.

Here are the games I played - 
  1. Round 1 won against John Hale
  2. Round 2 won against Ronald Morris
  3. Round 3 drew a winning rook end game against George Shan
  4. Round 4 won against Faisal Kaleem
  5. Round 5 drew a lost position against Olayemi Ogungbe
  6. Round 6 won against Justin Gomez
  7. Round 7 won against Kursat Karatas
As Sadiaa is visiting us from Boston, we made it a vacation plan. We first drive to Los Angeles renting a Chevy Tahoe 25th December. Saiful from San Diego joined us there. We stayed in LAX Marriott and visited Getty Institute next morning. Then we reached Bally's Las Vegas at 26th night where Zeeshan Bhai, Bhabi and their 5 kids joined the party.

Ahyan, Zayan and Raisah played in Under 1250 section while I played in Under 1900 (as my rating was 1882). I also met FIDE Master Mehdi Hasan Parag who came from Bangladesh and played in Open section scoring 4 out of 9 games. His current FIDE rating is 2285 and so he was expecting to play in Under 2300 section. However, he found at the very last moment that his USCF rating is 2302 and hence he was the lat seed in the open section. He was accompanied by Rifat Halim bhai who was playing in Under 1500 section coming from Florida. I and Rifat Bhai are trying to see how we can use Parag's chess talent to increase Bangladeshi chess players presence in the top boards of chess tournaments in USA.

Last year in this same tournament Ashfaq, Shumi, Sadiaa were also there with us. That time my rating was 1987 and I have lost more than 100 rating points over a year. However, last couple of months I am swinging back the ladder again and this time with the perofrmance in Las Vegas my rating in January 2014 has become 1990! You can see the final standings if you click the Under 1900 section link here -

To my astonishment, I saw the announcement of GM Maurice Ashley's Millionaire Open Chess when I came back to Fremont at 30th December. We came back earlier than New Year's Eve to have 31st night party in Sumit Bhai's house with all our close family friends.

I have registered for the Millionaire Chess Tournament already that will be help during October 9th to 13th in Planet Hollywood, Las Vegas (which is adjacent to Bally's where I just played North American Open 2 consecutive years now). I am very hopeful about this tournament and Ahyan will also play in the Under 1000 section.

I started a thread in chess.com to promote this event and I am nervous about actually meeting the 1500 registrations by 31st March. GM Ashley has already handled a half million dollar Chess Tournament (HB Golbal in 2005 at Minneapolis) and I trust his calculations and capability in this regard. I wish success to this even whole-heartedly as it will be a great win for the game of Chess in USA.

I also played Bay Area International Amateur section (1800-2199 USCF rating group) last weekend scoring an average 4 out of 6. My immediate next targets are Golden State Open tournament that will be held in Concord, California (BART accessible from my home) in Under 2200 section and Foxwoods Open in Connecticut at 24th to 26th January in Under 2000 section. I will meeting Parag and Rifat Bhai there in Foxwoods who will also be playing that tournament.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Official BABA Election Results from The Election Commissions

Official BABA Election Results from The Election Commissions:

Dear Bay Area Community Members,

Thanks to current BABA EC and BOT committee, BABA 2014 election was held at Santa Clara on Dec 15, 2013 in presence of community members.  The election was held for 2014 BABA EC Panel of President, Vice President and General Secretary, as well as two vacant BABA BOT (Board of Trustees) positions.  

We are pleased to announce the election of Mahbub (Mark) Rahman of San Jose and Mashuque Rahman of San Jose to BABA BOT for a term of three years from Jan 1, 2014

We are also pleased to announce that the panel consists of  Helal Chaudhury of San Jose as President, Mahbub Alam Nizam of San Jose as Vice President, and Quazi Shahriar Rahman of Fremont as General Secretary was elected.  This panel has selected the following members as 2014 EC committee :
1 Helal Chaudhury                                 President and Social Affairs Secretary 
2 Mahbub Alam Nizam                            Vice President and Finance Secretary 
3 Quazi Shahriar Rahman                      General Secretary and Sports Secretary 
4 Ananna Mohsin                                    Cultural Secretary
5 Ashik Uzzaman                                     Public Relations Secretary
6 Ezazul Bhuiyan                                     Publication Secretary
7 Raisa Sultana                                       Women and Children Affairs Secretary
On behalf of BABA Election Commissions, we like to extend our sincere thanks to outgoing Acting President Khadiza Dulal (Piu) and other BABA EC committee for an excellent job and dedication.  Thanks also to all members of BABA BOT for their constant guidance and advice.

Congratulations to the new BABA EC and new BOT members.  Best wishes,

Zia Karim
Badrul Hassan
Sohel Imtiaz

BABA Election Commissions
Dec 28, 2013

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Paid Off My Honda Accord 2009 LX

I just paid off my Honda Accord 2009 LX. Hurray! Now time to start looking for Honda Pilot as we need a bigger car.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

I Became Runner Up in Tuesday Night Marathon, Fall 2013 at Mechanics Institute of Chess, San Francisco

In the 9th and final round of tuesday night marathon, fall 2013 I won against Oleg Shakhnazarov (USCF rating 2187) who was solely leading the board with 7 out of 8.

Natalya won a seemingly lost middle game against Brendan La Counte and hence thanks to my victory against Oleg, became champion with 7.5 points out 9. Oleg and I are runners up with 7 out of 9. In 3rd board IM Eliott Winslow defeated Ivanov and hence he is one of the several in joint 4th position with 6.5 out of 9. 

I have been playing tuesday night marathon for more than a year now in Mechanics Chess Institute, San Francisco which just walking distance from my office. I never could be part of top 10 earlier. And now this time runners up! I am very happy with my performance although I believe I was very lucky last 3 rounds. For example, in this final round Oleg started a wild aggressive attack in the king side, being black and all his pieces undeveloped which was the result of a poor unorthodox opening. So as I defended coolly, he didn't have much chance the entire game except at the very end when I made a mistake and lost a piece that I was up, giving him practical drawing chances. However, due to time pressure, he couldn't afford the calculations needed and simply went to a same color bihsop end game to win back the piece he was down. That end game was a dead win for me and so I had no difficulty to win both by position and time. But last week in 8th round Russell Wong (USCF rating 2200) had a winning position being exchange up against me. However, he couldn't find the correct defence for the counter attack I got as a compensation, and hence he lost. In the seventh round Alex Steger (USCF rating 2041) gave me the break by blundering a piece in an equal position. Being a FIDE rated event, I believe now my FIDE rating will also increase. My USCF rating before this tournament was 1882 and after this is going to be 1990, a hoping 108 points added! The final standings can be found here.

IM John Donaldson mentioned me in the 652nd newsletter of Mechanics Chess Institute while reporting on the final round - http://chessclub.org/news.php?n=652 . From this newsletter I came to know I have won $250 also from this tournament!

Now looking forward to the North American Open next week in Las Vegas where my son will also play along with a few other Bangladeshi chess players one of whom are coming from Dhaka.

Sunday, September 08, 2013

Took 3rd Place in Under 2000 Section of CalState Class Chess Championship 2013, Labor Day Weekend

I and Ahyan played CalState Class Chess Championship 2013 in Under 2000 (1800-1999) and Under 1000 (600-799) sections respectively. Ahyan's game was August 31st, 5 Round swiss. My games were Sept 1st and 2nd with 6 round swiss. Ahyan didn't do good this time ending up with 2 points out of 5 where 1 point is from bye, 1 from win in the last round and 3 losses.

I played well and became 3rd in the U2000 section getting $200 in the process as prize money. With this my post event tournament rating jumped from 1870 to 1924. Here is the final standings of all the sections and you have to scroll down a bit to find section A (1800-1999) result. In the open section IM Ricardo De Guzman won the trophy.

I didn't notice earlier but I see now that I have a FIDE rating of 1739 since last August 2013. So my next target will be to increase the rating and cross the 2000 barrier.

Here are my 6 games that I played in this Labor Day Weekend Tournament.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Isaac Asimov on his failure at Chess

I am reading Isaac Asimov's autobiography I.Asimov: A Memoir with immense interest. In the first quarter of the book, I came into a short chapter called Chess. I can't resist myself but share it with you here -

Failure at physical sports has never bothered me...What bothered me, though, was my failure at chess. When I was quite young and had a checkerboard, but no chess pieces, I read books on the game and learned the various moves. I then cut out cardboard squares on which I drew the symbols for the various pieces, and tried to play games with myself. Eventually I managed to persuade my father to get me real chessmen. Then I taught my sister the moves and played the game with her. Both of us played very clumsily indeed. 

My brother, Stanley, who watched us play, learned the moves and, eventually, asked if he might play. Ever the indulgent older brother, I said, "Sure," and prepared to beat the pants off him. The trouble was that in the first game he ever played he beat me. 

In the years that followed, I discovered that everyone beat me, regardless of race, color, or religion. I was simply the most appallingly bad chess player who ever lived, and, as time went on, I just stopped playing chess. 

My failure at chess was really distressing. It seemed completely at odds with my "smartness," but I now know (or at least have been told) that great chess players achieve thier results by years and years of studying chess games, by the memorization of large numbers of complex "combinations." They don't see chess as a succession of moves but as a pattern. I know what that means, for I see an essay or a story as a pattern. 

But these talents are different. Kasparov sees a chess game as a pattern but an essay as a mere collection of words. I see an essay as a pattern and a chess game as a mere collection of moves. So he can play chess and I can write essays and not vice versa. 

That's not enough, however. I never thought of comparing myself to grand masters of chess. What bothered me was my inability to beat anyone! The conclusion that I finally came to (right or wrong) was that I was unwilling to study the chessboard and weigh the consequences of each possible move I might make. Even people who couldn't see complex patterns might at least penetrate two or three moves ahead, but not I. I moved entirely on impulse, if not at random, and could not make myself do anything else. That meant I would almost certainly lose. 

And again - why? To me, it seems obvious. I was spoiled by my ability to understand instantly, my ability to recall instantly. I expected to see things at once and I refused to accept a situation in which that was not possible. 1