Two top Chicago

by Alejandro Ramirez
5/30/2014 – The traditional Chicago Open was held only days after the U.S. Championship. With many players taking advantage of the close location between the tournaments it is not a surprise that the event was incredibly strong. At the end, Armenian GM Gabriel Sargissian and Indian IM Priyadarshan Kannappan shared first place and the nice first prize.

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The Continental Chess Association (CCA) organized the Chicago Open, one of the staples of American Chess, from May 22 to May 26. As per usual for CCA tournaments there were different sections of the tournament, the main attraction being the Open section. Many players took the opportunity to travel to Chicago from Saint Louis, where the US Chess Championship was held only a few days prior, since Saint Louis is only a five hour drive away from Chicago.

The tournament favorite was Gabriel Sargissian from Armenia, famous for being Levon Aronian's second. He was in the USA helping Varuzhan Akobian with the US Championship. Sargissian's help was surely felt as Akobian tied for first in that event. Even though Sargissian drew his second round game (against talented youngster Jeffery Xiong from Texas) he was clearly always a favorite to win the event and this was very clear as after round six he had accumulated an amazing 5.5/6. Three draws in the last three rounds were sufficient for Sargissian to claim first prize, but not without sharing the money.

IM Priyadharshan Kannappan had an amazing surge. After starting the tournament with only 2.0/4 after losing to Kovalyov in round four, he sprinted with five consecutive victories and caught the Armenian with 7.0/9, also earning his first GM norm on the way!

FM Eric Rosen who plays for the surprisingly successful University of Illinois Chess team, was there and provided us with some impressions from the tournament:

Yuri Shulman has been one of the strongest players in America for a long time, but this year he was unable to qualify for the US Championship. A victory against Sargissian in the last round would have let him tie for first, but he was unable to do so and instead he ended up in a big tie for third.

The surprise of the event: Priyadarshan Kanappan who wrecked his opposition from rounds 5-9

Kayden Troff is close to fulfilling all of his requirements to be a grandmaster.
He fell victim to Kanappan in the last round of the event.

National Master Michael Bowersock. It is unclear if he is hiding from someone or from his bad opening.

GM Giorgi Margvelashvili. In the words of the photographer: "There is a lot going on in this picture"

GM Fidel Corrales recently switched to the American Federation.
Despite starting with 0/2 he tied for third at the end!

Little Awonder Liang is already above 2200

GM Anton Kovalyov is Canada's #1 player, and also in the pack of tied for third

FM Michael Lee attends Princeton and was the best u2500 player, which netted him $2000.
His sister, WIM Megan Lee, played in the u2300 section.

Bartolomiej Macieja juggles his time between being University of Texas at Brownsville's coach,
a professional chess player and a father. Not easy!

Emily Tallo has played in the Chicago Open five times.
It is "her favorite tournament" for reasons unknown.

Final Standings

1 GM Gabriel Sargissian 2684 7.0
$7700.00
2 IM Priyadharshan Kannappan 2420 7.0
$7500.00
3 GM Anton Kovalyov 2636 6.5
$1066.67
4 GM Bartlomiej Macieja 2605 6.5
$1066.67
5 GM Fidel Corrales Jimenez 2577 6.5
$1066.67
6 GM Yury Shulman 2560 6.5
$1066.67
7 GM Conrad Holt 2555 6.5
$1066.67
8 GM Giorgi Margvelashvili 2550 6.5
$1066.67
9 FM Michael Lee 2394 6.5
$2000.00
10 GM Julio Catalino Sadorra 2611 6.0
$266.67
11 GM Aleksandr Lenderman 2582 6.0
$266.67
12 GM Eugene Perelshteyn 2513 6.0
$266.67
13 IM Kayden W Troff 2484 6.0
$333.34
14 GM Dmitry Gurevich 2475 6.0
$333.34
15 IM Jeffery Xiong 2412 6.0
$333.34

Links


Topics: Chicago

Grandmaster Alejandro Ramirez has been playing tournament chess since 1998. His accomplishments include qualifying for the 2004 and 2013 World Cups as well as playing for Costa Rica in the 2002, 2004 and 2008 Olympiads. He currently has a rating of 2583 and is author of a number of popular and critically acclaimed ChessBase-DVDs.
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