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|GM Invitational Kicks Off in Dallas|
|By WIM Dr. Alexey Root|
|November 22, 2013|
The University of Texas at Dallas (UT Dallas) Grandmaster Invitational began Thursday night, November 21, at the Embassy Suites hotel in Dallas. A small group of chess fans showed up in person, for live analysis by UT Dallas Chess Coach IM Rade Milovanovic. However, you don't need to be in Dallas to watch the nine-round event. You can follow the games on either Mon Roi or Chessdom.
At the opening ceremony, last year's GM tournament winner GM Cristian Chirila battled invited GM Tamaz Gelashvili in two, two-minute speed games for the Richardson Cup. Chirila won the first game as White but lost the second game as Black. Stallings decided that both names would be engraved on the cup as co-winners this year.
Also at the opening ceremony were UT Dallas Associate Provost Abby Kratz, UT Dallas Dean of Arts & Humanities Dennis Kratz, and Richardson Chamber of Commerce Vice President John Jacobs. They made ceremonial first moves for three of the games.
The grandmaster section has no norm possibilities, as all the players already hold the grandmaster title. Milovanovic commented, "This is the strongest GM tournament ever for UT Dallas. Our top players are so close to each other. I don't know who will be #1 and who will be #8 for our Pan Am teams." UT Dallas has eight grandmasters and Milovanovic will consider their play in this tournament to decide his "A" and "B" team line-ups for the Pan American Intercollegiate Team Chess Tournament, to be held at the end of December at Texas Tech University.
When I asked Milovanovic for his predictions, he said that he expects GM Berczes to get into time trouble. Milovanovic said, "Berczes is our new Bercys. He gets in time trouble almost every game." Bercys refers IM Salvijus Bercys, who recently finished his Master's Degree at UT Dallas.
In the IM section, a category 2 tournament, IM, WGM, and WIM norms are possible. Milovanovic thought that WFM Patrycja Labedz's first round upset of IM Arthur Calugar was the most exciting first-round game from the IM section.
From the GM section, Milovanovic picked the fighting draw between Holt and Ramirez as the best game, stating "They always play sharply against each other."
Chief tournament director Franc Guadalupe thought that the most interesting fact about round 1 was that, "Black won 5 games, White won 2 games, and there were three draws."
Dr. Alexey Root teaches Chess Online courses, available worldwide via UT Dallas eLearning. You can also find her books at USCF Sales.