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WIM Irina Krush (USA) and GM Giorgi Kacheishvili (GEO) pose for the photographer, while socializing during round 5.

GM Gregory Serper (USA) makes a move in round 5. At his right side is GM Jaan Ehlvest (EST). Both players drew, Serper against GM Vladimir Akopian (ARM) and Ehlvest (EST) against GM Victor Bologan (MOL)

GM John Fedorowicz (USA) during his round 4 game.

NM Mauricio Uribe (USA), at left drew with IM Arnaud Hauchard (FRA) at right in round 5.

GM Victor Bologan (MOL), at left, drew with GM Igor Novikov (UKR), at right, in round 6, under the watchful eye of the internet. That contraption just behind their clock was focused on the board and recorded the moves of all top board games, for chess fans all over the world to watch.

GM Alexander Goldin (RUS) had a 4.5/6 score but then lost in rounds 7 and 8 to drop out of the chase for the prize money.

NM William Hook (USA) is not only a USCF Life Master (he has played more than 300 games as a National Master); he also is one of the most published chess photographers in the United States. Hook plays in many of these monster open chess tournaments, spotting his opponents time, while he photographs the top boards. In this tounament he drew with an International Master and a Fide Master, while scoring 50%.

GM Suat Atalik (TUR) stares at the camera before the start of his eighth round loss to GM Igor Novikov (UKR)

GM Igor Novikov (UKR) avoids looking at the camera while waiting for his round 8 game against GM Suat Atalik (TUR). Novikov won the game.

IM Benjamin Finegold (USA) made the 'Top Boards Room' in rounds 3 and 8. Unfortunately, he lost both games. Here, Finegold awaits his eight round game against GM Alex Yermolinsky (USA)

GM Jaan Ehlvest (EST) just before the 'tiff of the two timers', reported below, that preceded his eighth round game versus GM Alexander Ivanov (USA)

GM George Timoshenko (UKR) seems pleased to be the photographer's subject before his round 8 win over GM Artashes Minasian (ARM)

'Only in America' or 'A Tale of Two Timers'. This photograph and the next two tell a story that may seem strange to chess players outside of the United States and Canada. In most other countries, the organizers provide the equipment for the players, especially at the top boards. In these two giant North American states, players almost always are required to supply boards, sets and clocks at open tournaments. This photograph shows GM Alexander Ivanov (USA) at board 1, in round 8, setting up his 'Saitek Digital Game Clock' for the five second time delay. After having set up his clock, Ivanov left the board. [His opponent, GM Jaan Ehlvest (EST), had not yet arrived at the board.]

When GM Ehlvest - carrying a standard, double-faced analog "Tilt-Back Rolland Clock" -- came to board 1 for his eighth round game against GM Ivanov, he found Ivanov's clock already set up on Black's right. Ehlvest simply moved the Saitek aside and replaced it with his Rolland. In this photograph. Ehlvest's Rolland is close to the board, in front of a plastic cup. Ivanonv's Saitek is behind the cup at the edge of the table.

When GM Ivanov returned to the board, the competitors could not resolve amicably the question of which timer would be used, so Bill Goichberg, organizer of the World Open (and dozens of other open tournaments in the United States every year) was called in. Goichberg told Ehlvest that the time-delay digital timer was 'of preference'. In this photograph, he is about to reverse the table positions of the two clocks. The game was played, using the Saitek. Although Ivanov won the battle over which timer would be used, he didn't win the chess game. It ended a draw.

NM Lawyer Times (USA) during his round 8 game

FM Norman Rogers (USA) grasps his e pawn to open his round 8 game against GM Sergey Kudrin (USA)

GM Sergey Kudrin (USA), at left, prepares to respond with the Sicilian Defense 1.. c5 to the 1.e4 of FM Norman Rogers (USA) at right. Kudrin won the game.

GM Alexander Stripunsky (USA) during his round 8 game.

FM Stephen Muhammad (USA) during his round 8 win against GM Alexander Goldin (RUS)

GM Dmitry Gurevich (USA), at left, faces FM Guillermo Ruiz Gonzalez (MEX) at right, during round 8.

FM Stephen Muhammad (USA), at left prepares to start the clock, while GM Alexander Goldin (RUS) at right gets ready for his first move in their round 8 game.

NM Vasik G. Rajlich (USA), at left, faces NM Jerome B. Hanken (USA), at right. Hanken is one of the most active USCF politicians and frequently submits articles to 'Chess Life', the national organ of the United States Chess Federation.

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Last modified august 1999.