Round 3 saw the top seeds start to meet, with a number of dramatic games & a few unexpected results. The big surprise of the night was Ari Dale beating IM Guy West on board 1. Guy played the Barry Attack, but managed to get no advantage out of the opening, with a series of exchanges leading to a queen & rook ending, which at first sight appeared reasonably level. Ari however managed to gain an edge by threatening to take control of the c-file with his rooks, which forced one pair of rooks off & allowed Ari to take control of the d-file with his remaining rook & queen. Ari then managed to further improve his position, threatening to exchange queens & enter an advantageous rook ending. Rather than allow this bad rook ending, Guy tried a pawn break on the kingside, but this turned out to put his position in further jeopardy, with a 'hail Mary' rook sacrifice attempted in an effort to achieve a perpetual check. Ari defended accurately, ultimately finding a safe haven for his king, before Guy blundered his queen in a lost position. The other leaders had very different paths to victory, with Dusan Stojic having a surprisingly easy win over Carl Gorka, while Mirko Rujevic had to work much harder to defeat Malcolm Pyke.
Other boards also saw a few upset results, with Richard McCart beating Thai Ly & Jason Chew beating Richard Voon, while Abraham Widjaja managed to hold Jim Papadinis to a draw.
As usual, results are on ChessChat.
Also if you're looking for another view on the event, you can try the blogs by competitors Carl Gorka & Paul Cavezza - both are entertaining & well worth a look!
This week's game is the top board upset by Ari Dale over IM Guy West. Ari is most definitely becoming a force to be reckoned with at the club & it will be interesting to see how he will fare in the coming rounds against the other top seeds.