The annual ANZAC Day weekender at Melbourne Chess Club attracted 42 entries, after a late rush saw the field double in size in the final day before the tournament!
Top seed for the event is Grandmaster Zong Yuan Zhao, fresh off his victory in the Bangkok Open. One would expect him to win this event easily after winning the Bangkok tournament against a field of GMs & IMs, but chess is a funny game sometimes & strange things can happen! Other top seeds in the tournament are FM Michael Baron, Karl Zelesco, Pano Skiotis, Sylvester Urban, Malcolm Pyke & George Hua, with quite a number of other players over 1600, making for a strong weekend event.
Day 1 saw a few players go through with two wins, with most of the top seeds being in this group. The surprises are the Chan brothers, Kris & Luis, who both beat higher rated players on the way to a perfect start to the event.
DGT coverage of the top board is available on Guy West's Ozmium website.
Results & Pairings are available on ChessChat.
In a tournament like this, the early rounds are a chance for the 'average' club players to play a Grandmaster, but it is also a demonstration for the rest of us about how to accumulate small advantages, before finally converting these into a winning advantage, with a demonstration of excellent technique to finish off a winning position in convincing fashion. This is exactly what happened to Marcel Rothlisberger in round 2, with Zhao achieving an edge out of the opening, before slowly improving his position before his kingside pawns decided the game.