The Philadelphia International was not the only big tournament in Philadelphia last weekend. A five round weekend swiss, the Philadelphia Open, was contested June 28th-30th, and it presented the top players with an interesting decision. The Open was less days, less games, and less competition than the International. But it also offered less money in prizes.
Vladimir Belous (photo David Hater)
GM Bryan Smith
Three Grandmasters opted for the Philadelphia Open, and GM Hovannes Gabuzyan won the tournament, earning $1500 for his efforts. That was more than all the GMs who tied for second in the International. GM Vladimir Belous won clear second and won $800, while GM Bryan Smith won $500 for third place. Smith tied with Joseph Mucerino, but Mucerino won $600 for his clear first Under 2200 prize.
For the GMs, this tournament was essentially a round robin event. They all went 3-0 against the non-titled players and they all played each other to effectively decide the top prizes. Gabuzyan went 1.5/2 (draw Smith, win Belous), Belous went 1-1 (win Smith, loss Gabuzyan) and Smith went 0.5/2 (draw Gabuzyan, loss Belous).
The first GM game was in round three. All the GMs were 2-0. Gabuzyan and Smith played a hard fought draw while Belous was paired down.
In round 4, Belous was the only 3-0. He faced Smith and won that game to get to 4-0. Meanwhile Gabuzyan was paired down and won to get to 3.5.
In the last round Belous had black against Gabuzyan. Belous only needed to draw to claim first place, but Gabuzyan won the game to finish at 4.5. Belous finished at 4-1 and Smith finished at 3.5.