The 3rd round of the Russian Superfinal was played on October 18 in Novosibirsk.
All games of the men’s championship ended in draws.
A relatively quiet game was played between Alexander Riazantsev and Nikita Vitiugov. They went for the Sicilian Defense, which after mass exchanges transposed to a queen and bishop ending. The game ended peacefully by perpetual.
Evgeny Tomashevsky and Peter Svidler played a similarly quiet positional game. They started to repeat moves in an endgame with opposite-colored bishops.
Kokarev-Oparin was more exciting. The grandmaster from Penza, playing White, outplayed his younger opponent, but then refused to take the queen, which would lead to a position with a non-standard material balance and good winning chances for White. Soon the game simplified, and a threefold repetition occurred on the move 33.
Alexander Grischuk and Dmitry Bocharov experienced certain problems against Dmitry Jakovenko and Aleksey Goganov respectively, but in both cases managed to parry the threats and reach equality.
Vladimir Fedoseev tried squeezing something out of a slightly better ending against Ernesto Inarkiev for quite a while, but did not succeed. A draw was agreed on the 57th move.
The leaders of the women’s championship are increasing their gap. Both Alexandra Kosteniuk and Olga Girya won their third consecutive games. Kosteniuk played against Pustovoitova today. “I sacrificed a pawn, which probably was unnecessary, but nevertheless got enough compensation”, said Kosteniuk. “I could not see how my opponent could make progress. And then Daria blundered…”
Olga Girya, playing Black, faced Daria Charochkina. Girya successfully solved opening problems and got a promising position in the middlegame. After a single careless move White got herself under a pin and suffered significant material losses shortly after. In a hopeless position, being down a piece, Charochkina acknowledged her defeat.
Girya: “I think Dasha misplayed in the opening, and when we reached a relatively sharp position, her knight on d6 was always threatened because of a pin. I think I calculated everything correctly when decided to give up a pawn on the queenside in order to win this knight.”
The defending champion Aleksandra Goryachkina won her first game in Novosibirsk, and the victory was fast and furious. Her opponent, Ekaterina Ubiennykh, blundered badly on the 15th move. Goryachkina won a piece and also got a winning attack. White resigned on the 24th move.
After two starting losses, Valentina Gunina also scored her first win in Novosibirsk, beating Alina Kashlinskaya in the Catalan Opening. White got a better position after the opening and transposed to a favorable rook ending, then won a pawn and converted it, showing good technique.
“The opening was my preparation, so I will say no more. Most importantly, I was able to recall everything at the board”, said Gunina after the game.
Natalija Pogonina defeated Anastasia Bodnaruk. At the press-conference Pogonina said that she aimed for a quiet game, and this strategy gave her a lasting advantage. White cleverly utilized strategic advantages of her position and slowly but surely outplayed the opponent.
Alisa Galliamova and Evgenija Ovod made a draw.
Standings after 3 rounds:
Svidler, Fedoseev, Riazantsev, Goganov – 2
Grischuk, Oparin, Tomashevsky, Kokarev – 1.5
Jakovnko, Inarkiev, Vitiugov, Bocharov – 1
Round 4 pairings:
Inarkiev-Jakovenko, Bocharov-Grischuk, Oparin-Goganov, Vitiugov-Kokarev, Svidler-Riazantsev, Fedoseev-Tomashevsky