All photos by Anastasiya Karlovich
Geoffrey Borg, the FIDE CEO, arrives to tournament
Before the round starts, Adhiban, Bok, and Saleh enjoy a friendly chat
It isn't often that a grandmaster's queen finds itself attacked with nowhere to hide, yet that is precisely what took place in not one, but two games.
Radoslaw Wojtaszek vs Benjamin Bok
Centralization is key strategical concept in chess, but to every rule there is an exception. Here, just 15 moves have been played, but after 16. Nb3! (oops!), the queen was caught smack in the middle of the board. Black played 16...a4, but eventually waved the white flag 15 moves later. (Note: You can move the pieces on the diagram)
Top seed Wojtaszek probably could not believe his good fortune to find himself winning the queen after just 16 moves
Matthias Bluebaum vs Vishnu Prasanna V
In this game, Black only did better by one move, and after 17. Qb2! resigned in view of the inevitable 18. Nb3! winning the black queen
The queen related tragedies did not stop there, and even decided the top board and the top spot.
It was a crucial game for the standings, and Wang Hao admitted he had planned to not push hard for tournament strategy reasons, only to find his opponent had other ideas. The opening play seems very offbeat, but little did the Indian know, Wang Hao had analyzed it all in detail.... with one of his students! Daniel King is astonished to learn that an active elite player such as Wang Hao is also a teacher.
When asked how he spent his free days in such events, Wang Hao said he is very relaxed and usually spends it watching anime (Japanese cartoons) or playing video games
Although the chance for a GM norm is no longer on the table, 11-year-old Praggnanandhaa will nevertheless add some Elo points to his already impressive 2455 rating.
We are treated to a game between to very young fighters: Aditya Mittal, 11 years old, and Nodirbek Abdusattorov, 13, and already clearly of strong IM strength. The young Uzbeki shares his win with Daniel King.
16-year-old WGM Zhansaya Abdumalik has had a challenging event and stands at 4.0/7
Official photographer Maria Emelianova
The very likable Gawain Jones suffered another setback in round seven, and after a 4.0/4 start, has now lost two straight games
Vasanta Wettasinha is 60 years old, and rated a very modest 1718, but the incredibly out-giving player teaches children chess for free in Sri Lanka.
Top UAE player, Salem Saleh, rated 2652, reached a powerful position against his Indian opponent, but as he explains to Daniel King, who agreed, how he could break through was not at all obvious. He then hit upon a powerful plan, which he executed to eventually convert his advantage to a win. A fascinating video.
After his first round 'slip' when he drew 11-year-old IM Praggnanandhaa, Arkadij Naiditsch is now well on track with 5.5/7 and 5th in the standings. It will all come down to the last two rounds.
French GM Laurent Fressinet is also on 5.5/7 and 6th in the standings
|22||12||GM||Iturrizaga Bonelli Eduardo||VEN||2673||5,0||23,5||-4,1|
|26||57||GM||Deepan Chakkravarthy J.||IND||2483||5,0||22,5||9,8|
|28||18||GM||Salem A.R. Saleh||UAE||2652||5,0||22,0||-10,1|
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The games are being broadcast live on the official web site and on the chess server Playchess.com. If you are not a member you can download a free Playchess client there and get immediate access. You can also use ChessBase 14 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs.