USCF Home Chess Life Online 2010 June IM Bryan Smith Leading Philadelphia International
|IM Bryan Smith Leading Philadelphia International|
|By Andrea Rosen|
|June 27, 2010|
After five rounds at the Philadelphia International, local IM Bryan Smith, undefeated with five points, is leading the pack by a full point over his four closest competitors: GM Sundaraja Kidambi, IM Sam Shankland, IM Tobias Hirneise, and Mackenzie Molner. Because of the accelerated pairings, Bryan faced two of his toughest opponents so far in rounds 1+2.
A number of upsets from the pairings in the beginning rounds has resulted in only one GM, Sundaraja Kidambi, being tied for second place---the others are much further down the standings. GM Mark Paragua of the Phillipines drew his first match with Steven Zierk, one of the many strong junior players at the tournament. The other grandmasters also have gotten a lot of grief from the strong juniors. GM Magesh Panchanathan and GM Mikheil Kekelidze had just three points each after five rounds. Panchanathan lost to 13-year-old Darwin Yang in the second round and drew Zierk in the third round; and Kekelidze drew junior Shankland, who with four points is still in the running for his third GM norm. GMs Falko Bindrich of Germany and Amon Sol Simutowe of Zambia were faring even worse, and entered Round 6 with just 2.5 points each. One of Bindrich’s two losses was to 16-year-old Conrad Holt of Kansas, and Simutowe drew with both Yang and Holt.
The accelerated rounds led to some unusual pairings. In each of the first four rounds, Yang had to face a grandmaster, and was holding his own with one win, two draws and just one loss. But in the fifth round,Yang was upset by an up and coming junior, Amanda Rae Mateer of Arizona.
The complete Philadelphia International standings can be found on the official site.