Home Page arrow Chess Life Online arrow 2008 arrow September arrow Todd Blogs from Tennessee Open
Todd Blogs from Tennessee Open Print E-mail
By FM Todd Andrews   
September 1, 2008
Todd Andrews and John Bick
Many a hand scaled the grand old face of the plateau
Some belonged to strangers, some to folks you know

- Plateau (By: The Meat Puppets)

The 62nd edition of the Tennessee Open was held high atop the Cumberland Plateau in beautiful Crossville, Tennessee over Labor Day weekend. Known for its excellent hiking, spectacular golf courses and of course the headquarters of the US Chess Federation, Cumberland County is an excellent place to play chess. It came down to mostly usual suspects on day two with IM Ron Burnett, FM Peter Bereolos and me vying for the state title with 3.5 points out of 4.0. Junior player Patrick Tae rounded out the 3.5 score group. The final round was ripe for action.

When it wrapped up, Burnett was able to take down Tae with the black pieces and it was Tempo-on-Tempo crime when I won against Bereolos. Miraculously enough, this was the only time team members had to do battle over the weekend, despite the Tempo core participating.

With 4.5/5 each, Burnett and I were declared Co-Champions and with it both of us took home our 6th Tennessee title. Although Ronald is from a previous generation, we have both lived in Nashville approximately the same amount of time and it is a fair race for the coveted 7th title (The record holder is Robert Coveyou with 8 titles). Here is a small portion of the action.


That is a nice game from the champ in what could have been a very complicated endgame due to the connected passers. But who is this Bill Hall character? Well, if you were to ask that to television viewers in the Middle-Tennessee area, they would tell you all about a beloved weather man who took his best guess at what the heavens had in store on Channel 4 each night. But this Bill Hall is a Crossville homeboy who holds the title of Executive Director for the US Chess Federation. He is a pretty good chess player too and Bill cashed in on one of the expert prizes with 3.5 points. I personally believe this fun-loving and level headed Tennessee boy is a great guy to have calling the shots in an organization that has a lot of exciting events lined up, including a well-funded U.S. Championship in Saint Louis and a NASA/scholastic match (details forthcoming). So I'll honor Bill's recent successes with this nice victory.

Bill Hall-Christian Chavez

Hall-Chavez, Black to Move

In what seems like a reasonably played game for both sides up to now, black decides to go for the forcing lines and gets the short end of the stick.
19...c5! 20.Bxa5 Qa6 21.Bxd8 Rxd8 22.Nxh6+ gxh6 23.Nc2 and black is better.
20.Bxa5 Bxc1 21.Rxc1 Qa7?
21...Qa6 avoided the oncoming forking pattern.
 22.Bxd8 Rxd8 23.Nxc6 bxc6 24.Ne7+ Kh8 25.Nxc6 Qb6 26.Nxd8 Qxd8

Position after 26..Qxd8

and an interesting late middle game has occurred where white is better since he has no weaknesses and plenty of space.
27.Bh3 Bg6 28.Qc3 Qe7 29.Kf1 Bh5 30.f3 Qe3 31.d4! Qe7 32.Qc8+ Kh7 33.Rc7 Qe3 34.Bxd7 Qxd4 35.Bf5+ Bg6 36.Bxg6+ fxg6 37.Qa6 Qd1+ 38.Kg2 Kg8 39.Qd3 Qe1 40.Rb7 Kh7 41.b4

Position after 41.b4

and white went on to win easily thanks to the b-pawn and extra exchange. 1–0

Lotta poor man got the Cumberland blues he cant win for losin
  Lotta poor man got to walk the line just to pay his union dues.
  I dont know now, I just dont know if Im goin back again.

-Cumberland Blues (The Grateful Dead)

Those lyrics are for my good friend and teammate Peter Bereolos who was the only man standing with a perfect 3-0 score after day one. Peter’s stamina failed him in day two when he blew a won endgame against Patrick Tae in round four to draw followed by this uncharacteristic tactical loss by Peter to the Peoples’ Champ…as my good buddy Gerald Larson always says “what a cruel mistress chess can be!” After 17. Qh5, Re7 is necessary, but black is suffering after 18. e5.

Position after 17.Qh5


Completing the Tennessee Tempo lineup, (FM) Jerry Wheeler scored 4.0 out of 5.0 to take third place. I hope all of the USCL readers will cast their attention to the Internet Chess Club next Wednesday for the US Chess League. We are happy to be hosting Hurricane Gustav refugee (FM) John Darby Bick on our team for a while and hopefully his home, the Big Easy, will still be standing once this is published. My prayers are with them, but soon he’ll be singing…

Tennessee, Tennessee
 their ain’t no place I’d rather be,
 baby won’t you carry me
 back to Tennessee

Tennessee Jed (The Grateful Dead)

I love my state and my home and next year I will go for five state titles in a row.