After the equal score after the second game of the semi finals, Ruslan Ponomariov and Vladimir Malakhov will continue fighting for the qualification to the finals in the tie breaks. This is their press conference after the game.

V.M.: We had a very interesting and complicated game. After the black moved 4… Kc6, I thought we would have a running positional game. But Ruslan found an opportunity to make it “not easy” and the position became unclear. Yes, I had a pawn up, but my opponent had an obvious compensation. I could have played stronger in a way. Truly speaking I don’t know what would happen if Ruslan did not offer a draw. We both had a chance, but if you intend to win, you enormously risk. There is almost no time and there is a danger to miscalculate.

R.P.: I agree with Vladimir. The game was really interesting and at the same time complicated. I was trying to find something new. I created some problems, but at the end was scared myself, everything was so mixed up (laughing). There were several variations in the endgame, but it was difficult to play. If you make a mistake, you pay a high price.

Ruslan, there was an impression that you were intending to win today…

R.P.: I was just playing chess. Yes, I was hoping that my opponent will give me chances to win. Why not? We had similar situations: Vladimir has overplayed Svidler with black and yesterday Gelfand won Karjakin with black as well…

Vladimir you mentioned few times that the tie breaks equalize the chances of the opponents. The equal score 1:1 is the result you wanted to have?

V.M.: The score 1:1 is always good. Especially if this is the score after two draws, no worries about defeats. Personally I am trying to work in the same rhythm I had in the beginning. In principle, only strong Grandmasters play in the semi finals, so, the probability of a draw is very high. I am not talking about the situation if one opponent decides to win at any cost. But this is not me.

Who is supporting you at this tournament?

R.P.: My second is the Ukrainian Grandmaster Yuri Kuzubov.

V.M.: My relatives and fans are supporting me. But unfortunately they are doing this being far from me.

Ruslan, before your press conference, Boris Gelfand and Sergey Karjakin were giving their interview here. We noticed that despite the rivalry, they cherish kind feelings towards each other. What relations do you have?

R.P.: There are chess players who make me feel uncomfortable when playing against them. Because of weird or aggressive behavior. But if we take into account the participants of the semi final games, I have sympathy to all players. I am grateful to my opponent that our match is a pleasant game for both of us.

Vladimir, is it important for you to see an enemy in your opponent?

V.M.: No, I never try to find negative sides in my opponent. I don’t understand why we should hate our opponents. I don’t see any sense in it; I don’t think it could influence my performance.


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Chess Daily News from Susan Polgar
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