American Open Kicks Off with Upsets
By Randy Hough   
November 27, 2010
Roman Yankovsky
As approximately 210 players complete the second (first for about half of them) day of play in the 46th Annual American Open at the LAX Radisson, upsets are the order of the day in the Open section.
In the four-day group, FM Robby Adamson took down top-ranked GM Mark Paragua of the Philippines in the fourth round. He is joined at 3.5 points by newly-minted IM Steven Zierk, our World Under 18 Champion. Zierk beat WGM Anjelina Belakovskaia and IM Zhanibek Amanov. The other players, including defending champ GM Melik Khachiyan (victim of a first round upset by Mexican Master Giovanni Carreto), all trail by at least a point.
The three-day schedule saw even more surprises. Eighteen-year-old Roman Yankovsky, who recently moved to the US from Russia, beat the previous leader, FM John Bryant (who had previously downed IMs Mackenzie Molner and Andranik Matikozyan), in Round 4. See some of Roman's chess analysis from the Metropolitan Invitational, held over the previous two weekends in Los Angeles.

Yankovsky is joined at 3.5 by GM Josh Friedel, who is taking a Round 5 bye. Friedel beat IM Salvijus Bercys and top seed GM Alejandro Ramirez (who also lost to Matikozyan). Another stunner was Bercys' loss to 2204-rated Craig Clawitter in Round 4.
As the merge of the two schedules occurs and staff braces for the onslaught of well over 100 scholastic players (downstairs, fortunately), the American Open again promises some exciting action in the last two days. Stay tuned for games and check out the standings and tentative pairings at

Follow two other major Thanksgiving events, the National Chess Congress at and the Thanksgiving Open in Saint Louis at