Blog entries

Women WCh 2015 - Final (2)

Submitted by eugen on Fri, 04/03/2015 - 11:33
The second game of the final was a Ruy Lopez. It was a long positional battle as one would expect. Mariya was white and maintained for a long time a positional advantage. This forced Natalija to use a lot of time in order to find the proper defence. Mariya increased the pressure and in time trouble Natalija could not hold the position against the final assault on her King. Notice how black completely forgot about Bb7! [Event "WWCC2015"][Site "Sochi"][Date "2015.04.03"][Round "35.1"][White "Muzychuk, Mariya (UKR)"][Black "Pogonina, Natalija (RUS)"][Result "1-0"][SetUp "1"][FEN "5qk1/1b1r1p2/p2p1Pp1/P2Pn2p/1PpNP2P/6N1/1P1Q2K1/5R2 w - - 0 53"][ECO "C95"]53. Nf3 {53. Nxh5 ... is better} Ng4 54. Nxh5 gxh5 {This was the last straw. Black should not take that pawn if it wants to play longer. 54... Bc8 is needed} 55. Qg5+ Kh8 56. Qxh5+ Nh6 57. Kh2 Qg8 58. Rg1

Women WCh 2015 - Final (1)

Submitted by eugen on Thu, 04/02/2015 - 16:46
Natalija and Mariya are unlikely finalists, facing each other in a 4 games match with possible tie break games in case of a tie! The first game was very quiet with both players content to play cautious, exchange pieces and reach a draw. Those interested in the Anti-Meran might like to save it to their database for reference. [Event "WWCC2015"][Site "Sochi"][Date "2015.04.02"][Round "34.1"][White "Pogonina, Natalija (RUS)"][Black "Muzychuk, Mariya (UKR)"][Result "1/2-1/2"][ECO "D45"]1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. e3 e6 5. Nf3 Nbd7 6. Qc2 Bd6 7. Bd3 O-O 8. O-O dxc4 9. Bxc4 b5 10. Be2 a6 11. Rd1 Qc7 12. e4 e5 13. dxe5 Nxe5 14. h3 Re8 15. Bg5 Nxf3+ 16. Bxf3 Be6 17. Rac1 Rad8 18. b3 Bh2+ 19. Kf1 Be5 20. Be3 h6 21. Ne2 Rxd1+ 22. Rxd1 Bc8 23. Kg1 Bb7 24. g3 Rd8 25. Rxd8+ Qxd8 26. Bg2 Bc7 27. Nf4 Nd7 28. Nd3 Bb6 29. Nc5 Bc8 30. Nxd7 Bxd7 31. Bc5 Bxc5 32. Qxc5 Qa5 33. a3 Be6 34. e5 Qe1+ 35. Kh2 Bxb3 36. Bxc6 Be6 37. Bg2 Qe2 38. Qb6 Qxe5 39. Qxa6 Qc5 40. Qa8+ Kh7

Women WCh 2015 - Semifinals (2)

Submitted by eugen on Mon, 03/30/2015 - 11:39
After yesterday masteful endgame display by Pia, Natalija had to win. It is remarkable in this situation Pia decided to play the Sicilian and put a lot of faith into a Queenside dominance. This however resulted into negligence on the Kingside! Natalija correctly observed it and after good preparation it began the final assault with a swift attack. Her win tied the match; well deserved result for Natalija! [Event "WWCC2015"][Site "Sochi"][Date "2015.03.30"][Round "29.2"][White "Pogonina, Natalija (RUS)"][Black "Cramling, Pia (SWE)"][Result "1-0"][SetUp "1"][FEN "2rq4/1r1p1pk1/pp2p1pp/4P3/P1nRN3/2P3Q1/2P2PPP/4R1K1 w - - 0 27"][ECO "B28"]27. h4 Qc7 28. f4 b5 29. h5 Qd8 30. axb5 axb5 31. Qg4 Qe7 32. Rd3 Rg8 33. Nf6 Rh8 34. Rg3 d5 35. hxg6 fxg6 36. Qxg6+ Kf8 37. Ra1 Ra7 38. Nd7+

Women WCh 2015 - Semifinals (1)

Submitted by eugen on Sun, 03/29/2015 - 20:47
Pia is a very experienced player. She got a small but persistent advantage and took it into a long endgame. We can enjoy her endgame technique; to me it is better than reading a book. Watch and learn! [Event "WWCC2015"][Site "Sochi"][Date "2015.03.29"][Round "28.2"][White "Cramling, Pia (SWE)"][Black "Pogonina, Natalija (RUS)"][Result "1-0"][SetUp "1"][FEN "8/1pk2p2/3r3p/PR1p2pP/3P2P1/3KP3/8/8 w - - 0 55"][ECO "D56"]55. e4 dxe4+ 56. Kxe4 Rf6 57. Rf5 Re6+ 58. Kd5 Rd6+ 59. Kc4 f6 60. Rb5 Re6 61. Kd5 Re3 62. Rb6 Rf3 63. Ke6 Rf4 64. d5 Re4+ 65. Kxf6 Rxg4 66. d6+ Kc8 67. Kg6 Rg1 68. Kxh6 g4 69. Kg7 g3 70. h6 Rh1 71. Rb2 Rh4 72. h7 Rg4+ 73. Kf6 Rh4 74. Kg6 Kd7 75. Rxb7+ Kxd6 76. Rb1 Ke5 77. a6 g2 78. Rg1 Rg4+ 79. Kh5

Women WCh 2015 - Quarterfinals (2)

Submitted by eugen on Fri, 03/27/2015 - 16:23
The Benko gambit is rarely seen in top events; however Natalija needed a win with black. The usual pressure black has for the sacrificed pawn was tangible during the first 30 something moves, then at move 33 black got it back. Both players then decided to go for the kill with black having a slight upper hand which brought her the victory in the end. This match goes now into tie breaks. [Event "WWCC2015"][Site "Sochi"][Date "2015.03.27"][Round "23.2"][White "Zhao, Xue (CHN)"][Black "Pogonina, Natalija (RUS)"][Result "0-1"][ECO "A58"] 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 c5 3. d5 b5 4. cxb5 a6 5. bxa6 g6 6. Nc3 Bg7 7. g3 O-O 8. Bg2 d6 9. Nf3 Nxa6 10. O-O Qb6 11. Re1 Nc7 12. e4 Nd7 13. a4 Ba6 14. Ra3 Rfb8 15. Qc2 Ne5 16. Nxe5 Bxe5 17. Nd1 e6 18. Bd2 Bd4 19. Bc3 e5 {black applies continuous pressure} 20. Bh3 Ra7 21. Bg4 Rab7 22. Be2 c4 23. Bxd4 Qxd4 24. Ra2 Ne8 25. Nc3 Rb4 26. Rd1 Qb6 27. a5 Qc7 28. Rda1 Nf6 29. Na4 Nd7 30. Nb6 Rb7 31. Ra4 Rxa4 32. Qxa4 Nxb6 33. axb6 Rxb6 {material is now equal again and black has a small advantage} 34. Rc1 Qc5 35. b3 Bb5 36. Qa8+ Kg7 37. bxc4 Ba6 38. Re1 Qb4 39. Kf1 Bxc4 40. Bxc4 Qxc4+ 41. Kg2 Rb1 {both players are going for the win} 42. Qa5 Qd3 43. Kh3 Rb2 44. Qc7 Rxf2 45. Qxd6 Qc3 46. Rb1 Qc8+

Women WCh 2015 - Quarterfinals (1)

Submitted by eugen on Thu, 03/26/2015 - 13:51
Mariya had a rocky start against our fellow Canadian Yuan in round 1, while Humpy won all 3 matches so far with a 2-0 score. It is then unexpected to see Mariya surprising her opponent with a nice pseudo Queen sac and scoring the full point when black's King was left alone. [Event "WWCC2015"][Site "Sochi"][Date "2015.03.26"][Round "22.1"][White "Muzychuk, Mariya (UKR)"][Black "Koneru, Humpy (IND)"][Result "1-0"][ECO "C45"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 exd4 4. Nxd4 Bc5 5. Be3 Qf6 6. c3 Nge7 7. g3 d5 8. Bg2 dxe4 9. O-O O-O 10. Nd2 Bb6 11. Re1 Nxd4 12. Nxe4 Qf5 13. Bxd4 Nc6 14. Bxb6 axb6 15. f4 Be6 16. b3 h6 17. h3 Ra3 18. Qd2 Qa5 19. b4 Qa4 20. g4 Rd8 21. Qf2 Rxa2 22. Rxa2 Bxa2 23. b5 Na7 {the black pieces have deserter their King } 24. g5 hxg5 25. Nxg5 f6 {now it is too late to put up a defence} 26. Qd2 Rf8 27. Bd5+ Bxd5 28. Qxd5+ Kh8 29. Qf7

Women WCh 2015 - round 3 (2)

Submitted by eugen on Tue, 03/24/2015 - 13:55
Anna Muzychuk joined her sister Mariya into round 4 after a well played game. She won an exchange at move 29 and after Lela misplaced her knight at move 33, she proceeded to punish that methodically. We can replay, enjoy and learn from that last part of the game. Lesson: "how to win a won game"! [Event "WWCC2015"][Site "Sochi"][Date "2015.03.24"][Round "19.3"][White "Javakhishvili, Lela (GEO)"][Black "Muzychuk, Anna (UKR)"][Result "0-1"][SetUp "1"][FEN "8/4k2N/4n3/5pp1/8/4B1P1/4rP1P/6K1 b - - 0 33"][ECO "E15"]33... f4 34. Bb6 Rb2 35. Ba5 f3 36. h3 Kf7 37. h4 g4 38. Bc3 Rb1+ 39. Kh2 Rf1 40. Nf6 Rxf2+ 41. Kg1 Rg2+ 42. Kf1 Rxg3 43. h5 Ng5 44. Nd7 Ke6 45. Nf8+ Kf5 46. Ng6 Rh3

Women WCh 2015 - round 3 (1)

Submitted by eugen on Mon, 03/23/2015 - 17:41
Veteran GM Pia Cramling took the exchange offering of black and proceeded to convert the material advantage into a winning advantage. We have the final combination to enjoy, my first re-playable puzzle try here on the website. Hope you like it. [Event "WWCC2015"][Site "Sochi"][Date "2015.03.23"][Round "18.6"][White "Cramling, Pia (SWE)"][Black "Gunina, Valentina (RUS)"][Result "1-0"][SetUp "1"][FEN "5rk1/5p2/6p1/p1PpQ2p/3Pn1P1/3q4/1R3PK1/1R6 w - - 0 33"][ECO "D18"]33.Rb8 f6 34.Qxd5+ Kg7 35.R1b7+ Kh6 36.Rxf8 f5 37.gxf5 Ng3 38.Rh7+ Kg5 39.fxg6+

Women WCh 2015 - round 2 (2)

Submitted by eugen on Sat, 03/21/2015 - 19:40
Alexandra Kosteniuk protected her 1-0 match score by playing a simple second game with white and drew it by perpetual check. She was the first one to move to the third round; congratulations Alexandra! [Event "WWCC2015"][Site "Sochi"][Date "2015.03.21"][Round "11.5"][White "Kosteniuk, Alexandra (RUS)"][Black "Shen, Yang (CHN)"][Result "1/2-1/2"][ECO "C84"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. d3 b5 7. Bb3 d6 8. a3 O-O 9. Nc3 Bg4 10. Be3 Nd4 11. Bxd4 exd4 12. Nd5 c5 13. Nxe7+ Qxe7 14. Re1 Nd7 15. h3 Be6 16. Ba2 Qf6 17. a4 Rfb8 18. axb5 axb5 19. Bxe6 fxe6 20. e5 dxe5 21. Qe2 Rxa1 22. Rxa1 Qf4 23. Ra7 Rd8 24. b3 h6 25. Qe1 b4 26. Qe2 Kh8 27. Rxd7 Rxd7 28. Nxe5 Qc1+ 29. Kh2 Ra7 30. Ng6+ Kh7 31. Qxe6 Qg5 32. Nf8+ Kh8 33. Ng6+

Women WCh 2015 - round 2 (1)

Submitted by eugen on Fri, 03/20/2015 - 13:54
After a normal Catalan opening, black chose an aggressive approach on the King side. White took advantage and finished the game with a nice combination beginning with 28. Nxg6! ... [Event "WWCC2015"][Site "Sochi"][Date "2015.03.20"][Round "10.6"][White "Gunina, Valentina (RUS)"][Black "Girya, Olga (RUS)"][Result "1-0"][ECO "E06"] 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 d5 4. g3 Be7 5. Bg2 O-O 6. O-O dxc4 7. Qc2 a6 8. Qxc4 b5 9. Qc2 Bb7 10. Bg5 Nbd7 11. Nbd2 Rc8 12. Bxf6 Nxf6 13. Nb3 c5 14. dxc5 Be4 15. Qc3 Bd5 16. Rac1 Bxb3 17. Qxb3 Bxc5 18. e3 Qb6 19. Rc2 Rc7 20. Ne5 Rfc8 21. Rd1 g6 22. Rcd2 Be7 23. g4 Rc5 24. Nd3 Rg5 25. h3 h5 26. gxh5 Rxh5 27. Nf4 Rhc5 28. Nxg6 fxg6 29. Rd6 Bxd6 30. Qxe6+ Kh7 31. Rxd6 Rc1+ 32. Kh2 Qc7 33. Qxf6 Rc2 34. Qxg6+ Kh8 35. Qh5+ Kg8 36. Bd5+ Kg7 37. Qh6#