Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Best game prizes

The concept of a prize for the "Best Played Game" is probably on the way out, in part because it is a difficult to manage. Apart from the usual reticence of players to put their own games forward for judging, judging the games themselves can be difficult. In the old days a Master would normally be roped in to run his eyes over a few games and choose one to his liking. However spare Masters can sometimes be hard to find, especially ones that can quickly make a judgement in the frenzied rush towards the prize giving ceremony. The other option is to run them through a tame computer program, and choose the one that the computer finds least objectionable. The difficulty with this approach is that there will almost always be moves that are "second best", and without sound judgement, such findings may colour the overall impression of the game. They did have a "Best Played Game" prize at the recently completed Australian Championship, but I am not aware of who won (possibly because I missed the announcement). However the organisers did put up a file of games that were entered, and I have picked one from this list. It is a win by New Zealand FM Michael Steadman over Pengyu Chen. Some may think the game lacks a certain subtlety, but it is the kind of chess I like to see.

Chen,Pengyu - Steadman,Michael
2012 Australian Chess Championship Geelong, VIC AUS (3.11), 29.12.2011


Ian Rout said...

It was announced at the closing ceremony that ZY Zhao won the prize for Zhao v Ikeda from Round 2.

Shaun Press said...

Thanks Ian

Anonymous said...

Your choice is clearly the opposite extreme to what was chosen by Leonid. In my personal view, neither is a good choice.
1) Your choice is just too simplistic. Frankly speaking it reminds me one of my bullet games. The play by white was so weak that anything black would do would be enough.
2) On the other hand, I am not a big fun of the Leonid's choice either. The exchange sacrifice is a technical instrument at the 2500+, so white did not really do anything special in this game. It is a good positional win by white and for me personally it is just too boring to call it the most beautiful game of the championship.


Shaun Press said...

I agree with your point 1. In fact when I said I 'picked' one it wasn't that I picked it as the best, just that it was the one I chose to show.