Selangor Open

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Bobby Ang

Chess Piece

45th Selangor Open
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
April 27-May 1, 2018

Final Top Standings

1-3. IM Marcos Llaneza Vega ESP 2422, IM Haridas Pascua PHI 2441, IM Oliver Dimakiling PHI 2412, 7.0/9

4-10. Merben Roque PHI 2318, GM Alexander Fominyh RUS 2391, Ian Udani PHI 2234, FM John Marvin Miciano PHI 2260, IM Emmanuel Senador PHI 2323, Chan Kim Yew MAS 2148, Lye Lik Zang MAS 2183, 6.5/911

11-15. FM Pitra Andyka INA 2213, GM Bong Villamayor SGP 2427, Efren Bagamasbad PHI 2120, FM Alekhine Nouri PHI 1883, Sabri Mohd Saprin MAS 2032, 6.0/9

Total of 87 participants

Time Control: Players receive 90 minutes for the first 40 moves then 30 minutes play-to-finish with 30 seconds added to their clocks after every move starting move 1.

The Spanish IM Marcos Llaneza Vega (ELO 2422, born March 16, 1987) won the just concluded 45th Selangor Open Chess Tournament in Malaysia. He actually figured in a tie for first with Filipino International Masters Haridas Pascua and Oliver Dimakiling but was awarded the trophy based on the better tie-break scores.

John Marvin Miciano capped off his Southeast Asian campaign by tying for fourth just half a point behind the three winners. The tournament finished too late to be included in the FIDE rating list for May but anyway the past month’s campaign has seen his rating jump by 171 (!) points and he is now rated 2431, no. 11 in the Philippines behind GMs Ino Sadorra 2546, Oliver Barbosa 2545, Mark Paragua 2512, Joseph Sanchez 2471, John Paul Gomez 2461, Eugene Torre 2460, Rogelio Antonio, Jr. 2452, Rogelio Barcenilla 2452, Richard Bitoon 2450 and IM Haridas Pascua 2441.

John Marvin won his first three games, had two losses and a draw in the next three rounds and finished with another 3 wins. The following is his best game. He has annotated it for us through the kindness of his coach GM Jayson Gonzales.

FM Pitra Andyka is a strong player from Indonesia. Back in 2012 in the Brunei Campomanes Memorial he scored 3/3 against Filipino masters and tied for first.

Andyka scored 4.5/5 in the opening rounds and took the early lead in Selangor. However, he slowed down after losing to Oliver Dimakiling in round 6. By the time of this game (i.e., last round) he could still tie for first if he beat Miciano, but his opponent had a different idea.

Andyka, Pitra (2213) — Miciano, John Marvin (2260) [B09]
45th Selangor Open Chess Kuala Lumpur (9), 01.05.2018 [Marvin,John]

One of my best games.

1.e4 d6 2.d4 Nf6 3.Nc3 g6 4.f4

I was expecting 4.Nf3

4…Bg7 5.Nf3 0–0 6.Bd3

During my pre-game preparation I noted that he has not had much experience in the Pirc.

6…Nbd7 7.e5 Ne8 8.Qe2 c5 9.d5?!

I have already encountered this move twice in “heavy” tournaments. My opinion of the move is that it is bad as now black can easily attack white’s center pawns.

9…Nb6 10.Bd2


In the Penang Open last year my opponent Setyaki played 10.Be3 here but after 10…Nc7 he has difficulty holding on to his pawns and I think Black is already better here. Setyaki,A (2349)-Miciano,J (2224) Penang 2017 0–1 (17);

10.Be4 Nc7 is another version of the line above. Black is now threatening …f5. 11.Be3 e6 12.0–0–0 f5 13.exd6 Qxd6 14.dxe6 Qxe6 15.Ng5 Qe7 16.Bd3 h6 Black has an edge and White self-destructed here with 17.Bc4+ Kh8 18.Nf7+ Rxf7 19.Bxf7 Qxf7 20.Rd8+ Kh7 21.Bxc5 Ne6 Black has a decisive advantage. Tuncer,T (1996)-Selbes,T (2308) Kemer 2014 0–1 (32);

10.e6 fxe6 11.dxe6 d5 Black is likewise clearly better. His loss had nothing to do with the opening. Wockenfuss,K (2380)-Pfleger,H

14.fxe5 h5 15.Be4

I was expecting 15.Bg5 but I had prepared the counter 15…Nb4 16.Bxg6 Qb6! (of course not 16…fxg6?? 17.Rxd8) 17.Bd3 Nxa2+ 18.Kd2 Re8 followed by …Bg4.

15…Nb6 16.Bf4 Qc7 17.g3 Be6 18.Ng5 Bg4 19.Bf3 Bxf3 20.Nxf3 Qc6

Threatening Qa4.

21.Kb1 Rad8 22.Ng5

Now comes a hard move to find.


Preventing e6 and at the same time simply threatening Qb6.

23.Bc1 c4!

Trying to get in Qb5

24.Rxd8 Rxd8 25.Rf1?

Correct is 25.Rd1. The text move is a blunder but it is not so easy to see why.

25…Qb5 26.Rf3?

The lesser evil is 26.Qf3 Rf8 27.Nxf7? (27.Ka1 Bxe5) 27…Nxb2! Here comes a decisive series of good moves.

26…Bxe5! 27.Nxf7

[if 27.Rb3 Qd5]



28.Rb3 <D>


And now comes the brilliancy.


Offering the rook,queen and bishop for free, but none could be taken after all.

29.Nh6+ Kh8 30.Nf7+ Kg7 31.Qe5+ Qxe5 0–1

I thought that the following draw against GM Alexei Barsov, at one time among the leading players of Uzbekistan, smacked of tactical wizardry.

Barsov, Alexei (2411) — Miciano, John Marvin (2260) [E69]
45th Selangor Open Chess Kuala Lumpur (4), 29.04.2018

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nf3 Bg7 4.g3 0–0 5.Bg2 c6 6.0–0 d6 7.Nc3 Nbd7

The maneuver 7…Qa5 followed by Qh5 is in my repertoire. Once I even did 7…Qc7 and my opponent played 8.Bf4 then I went 8…Qa5 which is quite a bit funny, but playable.

8.e4 e5 9.h3 Re8

The Encyclopedia of Chess Openings regards the text move as the main line but nowadays Black usually goes for complications with 9…Qb6 10.c5 dxc5 11.dxe5 Ne8 12.e6!? with an unclear position although here Black has good chances for a full-blooded fight.

10.Re1 Qc7

I know that many people consider this position as good for White (Black’s position can get passive if he is not careful) but so far it has served me in good stead.

11.Be3 a5

My signature move.


[12.dxe5 Nxe5 13.Nxe5 dxe5 is my favorite kind of position. Black will play Bf8 and then maneuver his knight to d4 via d7–c5–e6–d4]

12…exd4 13.Nxd4 Nc5 14.Qc2 Bd7

The standard Pirc idea of doubling the rooks.

15.Rad1 Re7 16.Bf4 Rae8?

Objectively bad. 16…Ne8 seems forced.


I underestimated the move 17.Nf5 here, which is probably White’s best. After 17…gxf5 18.Bxd6 Qb6 19.Bxe7 Rxe7 20.exf5 Rxe1+ 21.Rxe1 blacks pieces are uncoordinated, white’s pawns are also movable.

17…h6 18.Nde2

After 18.Re2 I was planning for a blockade on the dark squares after 18…Nh7 followed by …g7–g5 and …Be5.]


Realizing that my game was slipping into inferiority I calculated a long line which leads to an endgame.

19.Nxe4 Nxe4 20.Ng3 Nxg3 21.Rxe7 Rxe7 22.Bxd6

White thought he was winning but I was prepared for this.


[22…Qxd6 isn’t possible 23.Rxd6 Re1+ 24.Bf1!]

23.Kf1 Nd4! 24.Rxd4 Qb6 25.c5 Qb5+ 26.Qd3 Bxd4 27.Qxb5 cxb5= 28.Bxe7 Bc6 29.Bxc6 bxc6 30.a4 ½–½


Bobby Ang is a founding member of the National Chess Federation of the Philippines and its first Executive Director. A Certified Public Accountant, he taught accounting in the University of Santo Tomas for 25 years and is currently Chief Audit Executive of the Equicom Group of Companies.