Sunday, 27 September 2015

Moulthun Ly and Anton Smirnov share first place in the Dato Arthur Tan Malaysian Chess Open 2015. (edited)

Dato Tan

Dato Tan Chin Nam showed his interest in the event which bares his name and which he has sponsored for it's entire twelve year history by speaking at the closing ceremony. He asked one of the youngest competitors, Sultan Al-Zaabi, to join him and to say a few words.

He is very frail now at 89 and needs help with everything, movement, eating but strangely enough not moving the chess pieces. He played several friendly games during the event. Talking itself is a considerable effort so he is economical with his words but makes perfect sense and shows full awareness of the world around him, especially regarding his two great passions, chess and horses.

The Open Winners

Six players finished on 7/9 with tie-break separating them. Full results for all events can be found on the Chess Results website. Australias took out both the Silver and the Bronze.

Brisbane player and coach Moulthun Ly came second

Anton Smirnov from Sydney, the early leader came third. 
His performance was nearly 2600 and at just 14 he clearly has a bright future.

The top seed GM Jahongir Vakhidov was the top seed and played accordingly, winning five games and drawing four. He played the toughest field, took the lead early and drew his way home. A thoroughly professional and deserved victory. 

Moulthun kindly provided one of his games for our viewing pleasure. His others were too dry and technical which one can't say about this one. Stockfish points out that his opponent had chance (understatement alert) around the time control but in practical increment play this is normal, even in games between super GM's. Makes it even more entertaining.

Here is the score of the game. As Andrew Ooi pointed out, the game re-player is not working.

White.   Minh, To Nhat     Black.  Ly, Moulthun

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.Bb5+ Nd7 4.c3 Nf6 5.Qe2 a6 6.Ba4 b5 7.Bc2 e5 8.O-O
Be7 9.d4 O-O 10.Rd1 Qc7 11.d5 Nb6 12.h3 Ne8 13.Nbd2 g6 14.Nf1 Ng7 15.
Ng3 c4 16.Bh6 a5 17.Nh2 Qd8 18.f4 exf4 19.Bxf4 Bg5 20.Qe3 Bxf4 21.
Qxf4 Qe7 22.Nf3 Nd7 23.a4 b4 24.Qh6 f6 25.Rd4 Ne5 26.Nxe5 Qxe5 27.Nf1
Ba6 28.Nd2 Rab8 29.Nf3 Qe7 30.Qd2 b3 31.Bd1 f5 32.e5 dxe5 33.d6 Qf6
34.Rd5 Rbd8 35.d7 Bb7 36.Rd6 Qe7 37.Be2 f4 38.Bxc4+ Kh8 39.Re1 Nf5
40.Re6 Qc5+ 41.Kh2 Qxc4 42.R1xe5 Bxf3 43.Re8 Qf7 44.Rxf8+ Qxf8 45.
gxf3 Qf7 46.Rd5 Qe6 47.c4 Kg8 48.c5 Ne3 49.Qxa5 Rxd7 50.Rxd7 Qxd7 51.
Qb4 Qd3 52.Qb8+ Kf7 53.Qxf4+ Ke6 54.Kg3 Nf5+ 55.Kg4 h5+ 56.Kg5 Qd8+
57.Kxg6 Qg8+ 58.Kxh5 Qh7+ 59.Kg4 Qh4# 0-1

As for my tournament, considering I have not played a lot of chess for several years now and have never had a good tournament in Malaysia, I guess it was not too bad. I started quite badly but recovered a bit in the second half.

My last round game was another blunderfest but am told it was quite entertaining so I have posted it as usual but hidden it here so only the most dedicated reader will see it :-)

Other members of our "delegation" performed well, got some breaks and missed some chances.

Brodie McClymont, who recently tied for first in our Zonal in Sydney thereby becoming an IM, played in his first International open. One bad double round day destroyed his GM norm chances and an unnecessary loss in the last round kept him out of the prize-pool.

David Liu, rated 1461, gained 110 elo points performing at about 2000! Despite this he could have done even better, spoiling some promising positions. He visibly grew during the tournament, adapting to the new environment. The player he drew with in the first round I drew with in the last round so he figures we are the same strength now :D

 Jacob Chan, who rarely plays in even local events excelled in the challengers. He played 9 rated opponents so should emerge with a FIDE rating, probably around 1500, on the next list.

Last but most definitely not least I must mention Jordan Chan.

Jacobs nine year old brother may have had the greatest influence on the future of Malaysian chess of any Australian. Let me tell you how.

Last night I had a cup of tea with Ignatius Leong, Peter Long and Hamid Majid, arguably the three most influential organisers in Asia. The subject of my last blog post, Malaysian cheating championship  came up and I was expecting at least a little rebuke. I was surprised that they were all in agreement and determined to remedy the situation.

Hamid told us that he witnessed the replay of Jordan's game and saw Jordan gently remind his opponent, who had just cheated him, to press his clock.  It was immediately clear to Hamid who was really telling the truth about the previous game and he felt very bad that there was little he could do to remedy the situation. Jordan lost the game and graciously congratulated his opponent.

All the chief organiser (Mr Hamid Majid) could do was give Jordan a medal for sportsmanship but he said "we must do more in future to protect wonderful young children like Jordan against cheating". 

Thank you Jordan, you are an example to all of us. 


  1. Just to correct you that the event is named after his son, not himself.

  2. Thanks Jimmy, for correcting and for reading :-)

  3. I think your 1st game from Ly Moulthun 4 ... Ndf6 is illegal ! :)

  4. Thanks Andrew, will add correct score now.