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Tuesday, October 2, 2012

London Chess Grand Prix R9: Mamedyarov Takes Lead; Grischuk Beats Gelfand (Updated)

Chess blog for latest chess news and chess trivia (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2012

Hi everyone,

The First FIDE Chess Grand Prix is taking place from September 21 to October 3 in Simpson’s-in-the-Strand, London. A very exciting Round 9 took place with Shakhriyar Mamedyarov taking over the lead from Boris Gelfand. The latter has led so far for most of the tournament. Here is the official report by GM Robert Fontaine. The tournament has a prize fund of 240,000 Euros. 
Round 9 Results
Wang Hao 2742 - Leko Peter 2737  ½-½ 
Mamedyarov Shakhriyar 2729 - Dominguez Perez Leinier 2725  1-0 
Ivanchuk Vassily 2769 - Topalov Veselin 2752  0-1 
Adams Michael 2722 - Nakamura Hikaru 2783  1-0 
Giri Anish 2730 - Kasimdzhanov Rustam 2684  ½-½ 
Grischuk Alexander 2754 - Gelfand Boris 2738  1-0 

Boris Gelfand was still leading with 5,5/8 after eight rounds just ahead of Shakhriyar Mamedyarov with 5/8. On Monday, Alexander Grischuk arrived just before the Zero tolerance kicked in and almost lost the game before it started! The Russian player decided to go for a rare and close Sicilian, to avoid the Sveshnikov of Boris. Right after the opening, Grischuk converted his development advantage into a clear pawn up. On move 23, Grischuk decided to go for a direct attack, sacrificing a piece on e6, giving a winning position. Boris blundered with 24…Kd7?? Allowing 25.Qg4. Boris lost the lead! See the game with Chess King.

Nakamura and Mamedyarov chose the Caro Kann as a main weapon against 1.e4. Once more, the American player seemed well prepared and spent just fourteen minutes for 21 moves! Adams managed to install the strong Knight on “e5” with the bishop “c3” and pawn on “f4”. White increased their advantage and Nakamura made a huge mistake 26…Rb8? and got absolutely hopeless position. The tournament is a nightmare for Hikaru who has now lost five games. 

Anish chose a close line of the Slav defence with 4.e3. White managed to get the pair of bishops and an impressive pawn structure with c3-c5-d4-e3-f4! After 30 moves, the position was totally blocked and the only possibility was to break through by g3-g4 and Anish did succeed in doing so on the 36th move. Rustam kept the balance, by putting his rooks on h7 and h8. The Dutch player tried all he could, found another breaking point with 48.c4! Rustam finally found a draw repetition!

Ivanchuk opted for a strange opening choice in a kind of King’s Indian reverse. The Ukrainian player played solidly and didn’t create a lot of danger. The position of the Bulgarian player looked even better, putting pressure on the d3 pawn.

Leinier went for a solid Bogo-Indian today against Mamedyarov. Probably the Cuban player wanted to play a safe line, but “Shak” showed his intentions with the aggressive 10.g4, 11.g5. Dominguez decided logically to counter attack on the queen-side and in the centre by d6-d5. Mamedyarov kept control of the position, exchanging pieces to arrive in a very confortable endgame with two bishops against knights.

Wang Hao decided to go quickly to the endgame in one of the main line of the Nimzowich. White looked a bit better thanks to their powerful bishop on “d4”. The Chinese player had to exchange a pair of rooks but couldn’t penetrate in black’s position. Leko created a strong blockade with his king on f7 and his rook on d7. After suffering, Peter managed to draw the endgame!
(Photos by Ray Morris-Hill

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