Monday 23 January – Thursday 2 February 2012

PRESS RELEASE N0. 12 26, January 2012
Wednesday 25 January 2012 report by Stewart Reuben on Round 2 of the Masters

The life-blood of publicity for chess tournaments is the games of the players. The better the games, the more they will be circulated. Since there were so many clashes at the top, there were a very large number of entertaining games considering it is only the second round. Some of the games will be anthologised and played over for many years to come in many different countries.

However the game between Artur Jussupov GER 2569 and Peter Svidler RUS 2749 was not one of them. The game was a very fair draw after 30 moves, but there should be a Chessbase symbol for such games. Virtually all the other games were in complete contrast and provide a very enjoyable experience when played through.

Shakhriyar Mamedyarov AZE 2747 v Tamir Nabaty ISR 2563 had just one flaw. Tamir resigned before the spectators understood why. There should be a law against it. But Black played a splendid concept with 14…Ng4. Whether it was sound is quite another matter.

Emanuel Berg SWE 2550 v Michael Adams ENG 2724 was possibly the Game of the Day. But no doubt there are a lot of contenders that I have yet to see. Michael is much better prepared these days than years ago.

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0–0 Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 d6 8.c3 0–0 9.h3 Nb8 10.d3 Nbd7 11.Nbd2 Bb7 12.Nf1 Re8 13.Ng3 Bf8 14.Ng5

(There is no doubt Michael gave up a pawn deliberately with 14…d5 as 15…Bxd5 16 Bxd5 Nxd5 17 Qh5 wins.)

14…d5 15.exd5 Nc5 16.d6 Nxb3 17.Qxb3

(Black has some compensation for the pawn lost in the shape of the bishop pair and the backward d pawn. 17…Bd5 loses to 18 c4.)
17…Qd7 18.dxc7 Rac8 19.a4 Rxc7 20.axb5 axb5 21.Ra5 Bc6 22.c4?!

(But was 21 Ra5 wise in conjunction with 22 c4 when the two white rooks could be attacked by the black bishop? After Black won the rook for bishop and White’s kingside was shattered, it was all over.)

22… bxc4 23.dxc4 Rb7 24.Qc2 h6 25.Nf3

(25 Raxe4 would still be approximately equal).

25…Bxf3 26.gxf3 Bb4 27.Rexe5 Bxa5 28.Rxa5 Qxh3 29.Bd2 Rd7 30.Bc3 Red8 31.Ra1 Nh5 32.Nxh5 Qxh5 33.Ba5 Re8 34.Qa4 Qh3 35.Qc6 Re6 36.Qa8+ Kh7 0–1

Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar (2747) (AZE) – Nabaty, Tamir (2563) (ISR)

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 Bb4+ 4.Bd2 Qe7 5.a3 Bxd2+ 6.Qxd2 d5 7.Nc3 0–0 8.e3 Nbd7 9.cxd5 exd5 10.Bd3 c5 11.0–0 c4 12.Bc2 Rb8 13.Rfe1 Qd6 14.Ng5 Ng4 15.Bxh7+ Kh8 16.f4 f5 17.h3 Nh6 18.Qf2 Rf6 19.g4 g6 20.Qh4 Kg7 21.Bxg6 Kxg6 22.gxf5+ Kg7 23.e4 dxe4 24.Ncxe4 Qxd4+ 25.Kh1 Nf8 26.Nxf6 Qxf6 27.Re7+ 1–0

We had problems understanding why the Israeli resigned. The late, great Danish grandmaster, Bent Larsen, once said, “You should never resign until all the audience understands why.”

Even the commentator Simon Williams was puzzled. Basically 27 Re7! Qxe7 28 Ne6ch Qxe6 29 fxe6 Bxe6 30 Rg1ch forces Ng4 and Black’s position is in ruins.

The game of Judit Polgar 2710 (HUN) v Vyacheslav Ikonnikov 2531 (RUS) exploded into tactics in a manner we have grown accustomed to for the great Hungarian woman. Maxime Vachier-Lagrave 2699 (FRA) v Anna Zatonskih 2506 (USA) fizzled out into a draw.

There isn’t time in the commentary room to look at all the jewels on display. Should we ask the players to slow down so that we can keep up?

Alexei Shirov delighted us in the Commentary Room by joining us after he beat the English IM/poker player Simon Ansell with the Black pieces. Thus we had two Master Classes in one day. The young English grandmaster David Howell went over his first two games Wednesday evening, much to the delight of a packed audience. You can see this on http://www.gibraltarchesscongress.com/videos.htm.

Please do not hesitate to contact me at gibchesspress@gmail.com

Alice Mascarenhas
Tradewise Chess Press Officer

Press Officer
2012 Tradewise Gibraltar Chess Festival

Chess Daily News from Susan Polgar
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