"My opponent left a glass of whisky 'en prise' and I took it 'en passant". - Henry Blackburne | SINCE 2007

Monday, August 17, 2009

My First Tournament

My first tournament

In January 2004, I played my first tournament. Today, I read my diary and it was de ja vu, back then Atwolli<> could not play in any event, I used to crash him like a cat. Here now is the non-edited version of the events at my first chess tournament.

2nd veteran pharmaceutical open chess championships 22 to 23, 2004 Jan, Aga khan sports club.

I first heard about the veteran pharmaceutical open championships when I read the Monday standard on a report where Nigel short played blitz games against local players. The excitement of playing in full strong tournament was so high that I could not believe it. The idea of meeting Mathew kanegeni and the likes and giving them a run for their money was unbelievable.

My initial preparation was not that good; I downloaded a few games and planning material and made a 4-day crash course that I did not fulfill. When I left for Nairobi as Burnt Forest chess king on 21st I was sure I was going to walk way with 6-0.


I spent most of the day traveling and looking for the Aga khan sports centre. After getting lost, I finally found it and knew the registration was going to happen the next day. So after many years of playing chess I was about to play in my first ever tournament.


I arrived at the Aga khan sports centre before 8, not knowing the chess Kenya protocol, I had had to wait for some minutes before the officials arrived. As guys started arriving, I caught my first glimpse on john Mukabi. The “guys” started playing blitz and analysis; the deep understanding they had of the game amazed me. As the draw was made, I was given a dream pairing just like Man u playing Exeter in the FA cup fourth round, it wad Mathew Kanegeni vs. Edwin Korir in Board.

EVENT: Veteran pharmaceutical open chess championships

SITE: Aga Khan Sports Centre

DATE: 22nd to 23 Jan 2005

WHITE: Mathew Kanegeni

BLACK: Edwin Korir

OPENING: Siccilian Najdorf with f4.

  1. e4 ( after months of preparing for the Sicilian , here was my chance to play my best aganaist the best) 1…c5
  2. Nf3 d6
  3. d4 cxd4
  4. Nxd4 Nf6
  5. Nc3 a6
  6. Be2 ( the first variation and instead of replying to the moves he plays, my heart is beating, I am so excited and u have used less than a minute so far. May lack of tournament experience is surely showing) 6…e5
  7. Nb3 Be7 (I always initially play Be6 before this move, whether it was fear or not I could not tell but it proved to be a novelty.)
  8. 0-0 0-0 run away from trouble if you can
  9. f4? The move I have always detested, apart from Qc7 I don’t know how to handle it. It was going to be a long day. …Be6

starting off from here are the losing moves, apart from wasdting time this move does nothing at all. My plan was to accelerate thr f5 move so I could play Bd7 but that was not to be. The best plan here is 9…Bd7 10. a4 exf4 11. Bxf Ne5 getting an outpost which white will gladly exchange removing my isolsted pawn and leading to a pretty drawn position.

  1. Be3 Qc7
  2. a4 Bxb3? Bad move no doubt, it opens up the c file for white to usr.
  3. cxb3 Nbd7
  4. Rc1 Qa5
  5. Qd1 Rac8 the losing move. Failure to analyse, plan and adrenalin combines to bring this disastrous ending.
  6. Nd5 Qxd1
  7. Nxe7 Kh8
  8. Rxd1 Nxe5
  9. Rc7 Nc5
  10. fxe5 Nxb3
  11. Bf3 Nbd2
  12. Bxd2 Nxd2
  13. exd5 h6
  14. d7 Rd
  15. Rc8 Nxf3
  16. gxf3 Rxc8
  17. dxc8 >Q Kg7


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