Thunder Quick III took place on chess.com. There were 24 participants with the prevailing majority of these players being from either Borlaug or Wickham Elementary. The tournament was expected to take about 2 hours to complete but I opened the doors about 1 hour early so I could get setup and while the early birds chatted and prepared themselves for the event.
The previous winner of Thunder Quick II was Farhan (4.5/5.0) from Wickham. I expected this event to be a battle between Leon, Farhan, and Nolon but there were a few new students that had the potential to shake up the results.
There were no upsets after round 1 but one of the new students was expected to play against one of the top players in the second round. This was the matchup between Cole, from Mt. Vernon, and Aryan (1255) from Weber.
The position was much better for white with the rooks on the opened c-file but white had spotted the tactical threat of bringing the bishop to f4 to skewer the queen and rook along the diagonal. Things did not get much better for black from this point.
The third round Farhan, a previous Thunder Quick winner, was set to play against Aydan. These two are top players from the same school. The winner of this matchup would be likely finish the event with a medal.
This game was one sided. Aydan could have been nervous about this matchup but he lost a lot of hardware early into this game. Black currently has an extra rook and bishop while white is underdeveloped with an unsafe king. There was no surprise with this result, Farhan converted the position.
The new player, Cole, from Mt. Vernon had his hands full against Max; another top player from Wickham.
Going into round 4, there would be a tie for 1st place between Max (3.0) and Farhan (3.0). This matchup rarely happens in the Wickham chess club due to their being only 3 rounds. Max is a dangerous calculator and tends to be stingy when given a material advantage. My prediction was the game being decided on the player who drops the first piece.
Farhan had created some early pressure in the opening and after grabbing the second pawn, black had made a nasty blunder. I believe it was actually a mis-click. The knight captured the c-pawn threatening the queen that was on e7. Max tried to solve the problem by trading off queens on e2 but let go of the mouse on e3 instead of e2.
Farhan had no mixed feelings about grabbing the free queen and finished the game with ease.
The final round had Farhan (4.0) in clear first with Shreethan (3.5) in clear second. There were a lot of players with a score of 3.0. Shreethan was probably focused more on his competitor than his tiebreaks if he finished the event 4.0 with 2 or 3 others. Drawing this game would guarantee him a medal on tiebreaks but I am certain he wanted to win it all.
The game started off good for Farhan after he used his knight and bishop to target the f7-square. Shreethan had to make a concession and lost the f-pawn to avoid losing a heavier amount of material. He took advantage of the lost f-pawn by creating pressure along the f-file with his queen and rook.
In the current position black had just attacked the queen with knight to d4. White solved this problem by moving his queen to e3 but this walked into another problem. The knight captured the unprotected c2-pawn and attacked the king, rook, and queen at the same time (fork). White lost the queen and after the king recovered the knight on e3 (Ke2-e3), black sealed the game by capturing the f-pawn with his queen.
Nice Job Shreethan in your first appearance to the Thunder Quick Tournaments.
1st Place: Shreethan (Weber) 4.5 / 5.0
2nd Place: Farhan (Wickham) 4.0 / 5.0
3rd Place: Leon (Wickham) 4.0 / 5.0