On July 20, 2012 the Cincinnati Chess Club hosted a tournament which invoked the Fischer 960 style of competitive play. In this peculiar format a series of coin tosses are used to scramble the back row of both sides into unique positions (i.e. Bishops next to one another on e and f squares, etc.) The gambit of such play is an attempt to not only spice up board play; it also holds the promise of leveling the playing field by theoretically allowing a weaker player to defeat a much stronger opponent through accurate and precise play as opposed to the formality of recognized and memorized positional play.
This tournament hosted five players of varying strength across a five round single robin in which each round saw a player sitting out with a bye. In the first round Master Hans Multhopp fought against the lowest rated player yet still quite formidable Benjamin Bryant. Master Hans held the intuitive throughout the match, only slipping up once during the last stages of the game with a move which allowed the young Mr. Bryant fighting chances. Experience proved the mightier component as Hans executed the final stages with precision and accurate tenacity, crushing his lesser rated opponent. The first round also saw an upset as the Expert Andy Mackowiak lost quickly to Class-A player John Applebee. It would be Expert Andy’s only defeat.
The second round hosted harsh competitive play as Master Hans and Expert Andy slugged it out across the board. Sitting to the right of their board, Expert Duane Larkin and John Applebee fought neck-in-neck in a tenacious struggle of will and creative spirit. After intense struggle, Hans fell victim to an irresistible attack brought on by Andy Mackowiak. Just shy of this intense finale Duane Larkin usurped John Applebee’s position and won in fine fashion.
Round three hosted Expert Andy Mackowiak verses Benjamin Bryant. At board two sat Expert Duane Larkin and Master Hans Multhopp. After a titanic battle, of crushing blow verses crushing blow, Duane Larkin was able to drop the juggernaut down and contest victory. Board two proved the exciting highlight of round three, as Expert Andy completely obliterated his opponent the one Mr. Benjamin Bryant. It was a heart wrenching defeat.
Round four proved a delight to Benjamin as he managed to swindle a victory from the clutches of his opponent the esteemed Mr. Duane Larkin. Their contest went to very last seconds of the clock, and proved exhilarating to view. On board two, Master Hans redeemed himself with a crushing victory over the powerful Mr. John Applebee.
Finally in the last round the contest for first place was contested between the two point equals Expert Duane Larkin and Expert Andy Mackowiak. Also with equal score combated the hopeful second place runner-ups Benjamin Bryant and John Applebee. Benjamin Bryant went straight for the jugular against his opponent, fighting with zealous energy yet little accurate attack. John Applebee strove through the intense complications with diligence, refuting his opponent’s attack and leveling the playing field. Unfortunately the clock proved itself the master; John fell victim to its power and lost the game on time. After an intense slug-fight, Duane Larkin fell as third prey to Andy Mackowiak; the clear-cut victor of this tournament.