From the Pig's Pen


edition 3 * 18 June, 2014

The weekend of June 14-15 saw open tournament action in both Charlotte and Raleigh and several new milestones reached. First we’ll start in Charlotte where one player made up a good chunk of ground in his quest for a national master title, and a talented young player jumped into the expert class.

The Charlotte Chess Center and Scholastic Academy hosted the 38th edition of it popular Saturday event, the Reverse Angle. Fifty-two players from both Carolinas converged on the center to vie for the guaranteed $800 in prizes. NM Peter Giannatos served as chief tournament director.

Dominique Myers of Charlotte played his typical fearless game in winning the Open division with a 3+0=0- score. Dominique’s round two game demonstrates a timely disregard for material when it comes to cultivating a strong attack. Not satisfied with a two pawn advantage, Dominique completed the attack and force his opponent’s king to bow out of a hopeless situation.

As Dominique got closer to elevating his status with a new title, 14-year-old Kireet Panuganti hurdled the expert barrier with his 2+0=1- performance landing him a 2002 rating.

In the other three divisions, Damon Smith of Charlotte swept the under 1800 section as did Gunatesa Guruvelli of Columbia, SC  in the under 1400. Hrishika Roychoudhury of Charlotte bested the under 1100 division to round out the winners.

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Meanwhile in Raleigh, Victor Beaman and East Carolina Chess, hosted the 6th edition of the Raleigh’s Exciting Action Chess Tournament…. or REACT for short. The REACTs are  pure open events where all players meet in one section and anyone can play anyone. This leads to some big upset possibilities. A total of 24 participants entered.

Expert Ilker Bozkurt, a native of Turkey living in Durham, managed to escape the upsets by four high A class challengers to score a perfect 4+0=0- and win REACT 6. This was only Ilker’s second USCF rated event although he does carry a 2134 FIDE rating in from his native land. Alan Crist, Jeff Jones of Raleigh, and Jim Watson of Rocky Mount shared second place with 3+0=1- scores, all falling to Bozkurt.

Larry Williams of Fayetteville and Chacha Nugroho of Chapel Hill split the class B prize with 2.5 points each. Jacob John of Greensboro and Christopher Chaves of Durham shared the class C prize with two points each.

Ten-year-old Benjamin Yan of Cary and Nicodemus Njuguna  each won their classes and achieved new rating levels. The 1297 rated Yan played the two highest rated opponents he has ever faced in the final two rounds drawing a 1700 and defeating a 1926 to claim the class D award with 2.5 points. This boosted his rating well over the 1300 plateau for the first time.

Njuguna himself scored a 400+ point upset in round three with pushed him over 1200.

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The Knights of the Triangle hosted the TMSA II challenge at the Triangle Math and Science Academy in Apex the next day on the 15th. 53 youths from throughout the Triangle battled in five divisions. Venkat Shanmugavadivel directed this event.

R.J. Raynoe and Larry Chen  drew in the final round to share first in Division I. The 2+1=0- performance vaulted Chen over 1300 for the first time. Rahul Jakati swept Division II with a 3+0=0-effort. Lukas Dannull scored the same perfect three points in Division III.

Division IV saw five rounds as the lesser experienced players gained valuable experience. Sanchit Tamboli and  Kashi Tumbapura drew each other and tied for first with a 4+1=0- tally. Division V added a sixth round and Sriraam Kumar’s 5+1=0- score stake his claim to the trophy.