2011 Russian Team Championship: Ponomariov runs over Ivanchuk

4/22/2011 – It was one of the biggest matches of the event, with leader Tomsk-400, headed by Ponomariov and Motylev, facing Elo-favorites CHF-St. Petersburg, with Ivanchuk and Svidler as their top boards. On board one, Ponomariov as Black achieved a very active position, and won in under 30 moves. Though they saved the match, HSM-64 was able to draw level. Report on rounds eight and nine.

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Tournament: The Russian Club Championship is being held in the village of Olginka (Krasnodar Territory), Russia, from April 11 to 23.The men's tournament is a round-robin with twelve clubs participating. Each team consists of six players with two reserves.
Time Control: 40 moves in 90 minutes followed by 30 minutes KO and a 30-second increment as of the first move.
Time: All rounds at 6:30 AM New York / 12:30 PM Paris
Rest day: April 18

Rounds eight and nine

The round matchup between leader Tomsk-400 and Elo-leaders CHF - St.Petersburg promised to be an excfiting one. Tomsk-400 came sporting Ponomariov on board one and Motylev on board two, each playing their own brand knockout chess, and hoped to maintain its meagre lead over HSM-64, while the players representing St. Petersburg, in a near all-2700 lineup, came hoping to take charge of their fates with Ivanchuk as their masthead and Svidler as the backup. The top board meet was unexpected after Ivanchuk had shoved his way back to the top 5-6 players in the world over the last months.


The players ready for a tough encounter with Ivanchuk sipping coffee while Ponomariov
stays away in the background.

Ivanchuk,Vassily (2779) - Ponomariov,Ruslan (2743) [C65]
TCh-RUS Premier Olginka RUS (8), 20.04.2011

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.d3 Bc5 5.0-0 d6 6.c3 0-0 7.Nbd2 a6 This line of the Ruy Lopez Berlin has been very popular at the Super-GM level with Karjakin being its most significant contributor, playing it as both Black *and* White. Most prefers 8.Ba4 as White, but Movsesian, Svidler, and now Ivanchuk play Bxc6 just as readily. 8.Bxc6 bxc6 9.d4 exd4 10.cxd4 Bb6 11.Qc2 Re8 12.Re1 Bd7. 12...c5 13.e5 Nd5 14.Nc4 h6 15.Bd2 Be6 16.exd6 cxd6 17.Nxb6 Qxb6 18.dxc5 dxc5 19.Ne5 Nb4 20.Qa4 Nd5 21.Qc2 Nb4 22.Qa4 Nd5 1/2-1/2 (22) Svidler,P (2722)-Karjakin,S (2760)/Moscow 2010/Mega2010 Update 53 13.b3 c5! 14.d5 c6! 15.dxc6 Bxc6








With his last moves, Ponomariov has managed to revitialize his bishop pair and his piece activity is about to take on life. 16.Bb2 Ba5 17.Rad1 h6 18.Re3 Re6 Rook lift? Two can play at that game buster. 19.Nc4 Bc7 20.e5 Nd5 21.Ree1 Nf4








It doesn't take a genius to see just how threatening Ruslan's pieces are with all of them poised for a blitzkrieg on White's position. 22.Qf5? 22.exd6 Bxf3 23.dxc7 Although the engines do not see any win here for Black (bully for them), if you had been told there *was* winning continuation, would anyone have been surprised? Though the move played loses, it is hard to really get down on Ivanchuk for being uncomfortable entering this line. 22...Bxf3 23.gxf3 Qh4 24.Re4 dxe5 25.Rd7? A game-ending blunder, but Ivanchuk was objectively lost anyhow. 25...Rg6+ 26.Kf1 Rg2 0-1. [Click to replay]

In spite of this setback, St.Petersburg rallied, thanks to a win by Zviaginzev's win over Khismatullin, and drew the match. HSM-64 had it much easier in rounds eight and nine as they had not faced the two weakest teams yet, and sure enough, scores of 5-1 and 5.5-0.5 were no surprise.


HSM-64 had few worries in the last couple of rounds. Here (left) Caruana, Riazentsev,
and Potkin adjust their pieces.

The biggest matchup will be in round ten when the leaders HSM-64 and Tomsk-400 finally meet head-to-head. Expect plenty of blood to be spilled.


Irina Vasilevich demonstrates her attacking skills


Kateryna Lahno playing in the Women's league


WGM Nazi Paikidze


Alina Kashlinskaya


"Ugra" with their team jackets (please sack the person who chose the models)
against Economist.


"She's looking this way. What do I do?"
"Play with your hair. It works for the women."


As usual, the players take to the football field to unwind


Spectacular defense is not limited to the board


The women also enjoyed some football. Kosteniuk demonstrates her form here.


Natalia Pogonina stayed out of the games to enjoy the company
of her number one fan: her son Kolya.


Viktorija Cmylite


The charming photographer Maria Bolshakova, responsible for all the pictures on
the event, and chief arbiter Vyacheslav Namruev.

Pictures by Maria Bolshakova (Russiachess.org)

Crosstable after nine rounds

Rk.
Team
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
TB1
TB2
TB3
1
HSM – 64
*
3
4
5
4
5
5
17
40
0
2
Тomsk- 400
*
3
4
17
38
0
3
CHF - St. Petersburg
3
3
*
4
5
5
5
6
14
38
0
4
"Ugra"
2
*
3
4
4
5
13
34
0
5
Economist - SSSEU
3
*
3
4
5
5
12
35
0
6
Polytechnique
2
3
*
9
25
0
7
Club Chigorin
1
2
2
2
*
4
5
8
25
0
8
UEE – Vista
2
1
½
1
*
4
8
24
0
9
NIU "BSU"
2
*
5
6
24
0
10
Аtom
1
1
2
2
*
3
3
18
0
11
Yamal
½
½
1
1
1
½
3
*
1
13
0
12
OSDYUSSHR
1
0
1
½
1
*
0
14
0

Tie Break1: Matchpoints (2 for win, 1 for draw, 0 for loss)
Tie Break2: Game points
Tie Break3: The results of the teams in then same point group according to Matchpoints


Links

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