2022 ACC Halloween Rapid (A Chess Master’s Thoughts)

This article is the start of our new series “A Chess Master’s Thoughts” in which Canadian Masters share their thoughts with us, from time to time, using interactive games analysis and videos.

Below are the games from Board #1 of Annex Chess Club’s 2022 Halloween Rapid, which were captured by a DGT Smartboard. IM Mark Plotkin was the highest rated player of this event and played all 5 of his games on Board #1. FM Mike Ivanov was the second-highest rated player. The time control was 10 minutes plus a 5 second increment and Mark finished 1st with a score of 4.5/5. Mike finished 2nd with a score of 4/5. This fun event was CFC Quick-rated though CFC Regular ratings were used for pairings and are presented below. It is interesting to review the chess games to see what happened over the course of an evening. Rapid chess, like Blitz, is not perfect chess and mistakes, inaccuracies and blunders are common due to the time pressure faced by the players.

Mark Plotkin has annotated the games for us. He does a great job helping us understand his thinking process through the 5-rounds. One page is dedicated to each of the 5 games and you can navigate through them using the page number boxes below. On the final Page #6, we’ve added our own Lichess computer analysis of all the games. To replay these games, you may need to resize your browser window or possibly download the PGN files and import them into your own chess engine.

Round #1: IM Mark Plotkin (1) vs Michael Jacobs (0)

Mark Plotkin: I was excited to play in the ACC Halloween Rapid considering I viewed this as a good way to shake off any remaining rust before playing in my next few upcoming tournaments. Even though I was the highest rated player in the field, I thought it would be a great idea for me to come and play. I had the Monday off from work, so I was excited to start game 1 against a prospering junior.

A cute little combination to win the game. My rook, queen, and bishop all play a role in mating Black’s king. My opponent must be kicking himself for that knight that stayed on e8 that whole game. Sadly for me, I had to wait almost 30 minutes until the next game as this game was played very quickly.

Chess for everyone