Taizhou 05: draw in 61, Ushenina under pressure

9/17/2013 – On Tuesday Challenger Hou Yifan had a second white, and she once again played the aggressive Keres Attack she had used in the previous game. A theoretical battle ensued, with many exchanges leading to an even endgame. On move 21 women's world champion Anna Ushenina missed a chance and the game was drawn in 61 moves. Round five report with analysis by Tania Sachdev.

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Women’s World Chess Championship Match 2013 between the current World Champion Anna Ushenina of Ukraine and her challenger, Hou Yifan of China (former World Champion 2010-2012), is being played from September 11th to 27 in the Taizhou Hotel (Taizhou, China). The time control is 90 minutes for the first 40 moves, followed by 30 minutes for the rest of the game, with an increment of 30 seconds per move starting from move one. The games start at 3 p.m. local time. That translates to 09:00 a.m. CEST, 03:00 a.m. New York, 10:00 a.m. Kiev. You can find your local time here.

Round five report

According to regulations Hou Yifan had white pieces for the second time in a row

World Champion Anna Ushenina having less trouble with black than with white

Hou Yifan has just deviated from the previous game and played 8.h4, leaving Anna Ushenina pondering

The Ukrainian GM, ranked number 17 in the (female) world, has a daunting task ahead of her:

Anna, above with her seconds Alexander Khalifman and Anton Korobov, needs to win at least two
of the next five games against world's number two, who is rated more than 100 points above her

19-year-old challenger Hou Yifan has three black games left to play, but can coast to victory

Round five game – guest commentary by IM Tania Sachdev

[Event "Taizhao Women's World Championship"] [Site "taizhou"] [Date "2013.09.17"] [Round "5.1"] [White "Hou, Yifan"] [Black "Ushenina, Anna"] [Result "1/2-1/2"] [Annotator "Sachdev,Tania"] [PlyCount "121"] [EventDate "2013.??.??"] {Going into game five Hou Yifan gets white again. The reason for breaking color every four games is to prevent the same player getting white after every rest day.} 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 {Ushenina employs her preferred Najdorf. She has a lot of experience in the line and a good feel for it. Besides it is one of the more daredevil lines for Black, a need of the hour for Anna.} 6. Be3 e6 7. g4 h6 8. h4 ({In game four Yifan tried } 8. Qf3 Qc7 9. h4 h5 $5 $146 {Black got a comfortable game and it ended in a draw without much trouble}) 8... Nc6 (8... h5 {The interesting idea of countering White's h4 with h5 works better when White's queen is committed on the f3 square, as in the previous game. Here it doesnt work as well as White can deploy pieces better.} 9. g5 Ng4 10. Qd2 Nc6 11. Nxc6 bxc6 12. Bf4 Qb6 13. O-O-O Qxf2 (13... Nxf2 $4 14. Be3 $18) 14. Bxd6 Qxd2+ 15. Rxd2 Bxd6 16. Rxd6 { With a nice endgame for white}) 9. Nxc6 bxc6 10. Qf3 h5 11. gxh5 (11. g5 $6 Ng4 12. O-O-O Rb8 {and Black will generate play on the queenside, while its more difficult for White to do her bit against the black king.}) 11... Nxh5 12. O-O-O Rb8 {A gentle reminder to be slightly worried.} 13. Bc4 Qf6 14. Qg2 Nf4 15. Qg5 e5 $1 16. Qxf6 gxf6 17. Bxf4 exf4 {Three islands including tripled pawns (Jonathan Rowson called it a train without an engine)! Black clearly doesn't have the most gorgeous pawn structure. However the bishop pair, the open files and Whites weak h-pawn can balance it out, if Black creates quick counterplay. So it was crucial for Ushenina to play actively to neutralize the structural disadvantage. And...she does it well!} 18. Ne2 Rb4 19. Bd3 f5 $5 { A nice break} 20. exf5 (20. c3 {Not sure what Anna had in mind for c3 but it possibly could have been} Rxe4 $5 (20... Ra4 {Possible but not delightful after } 21. Nd4 Rxa2 22. Kc2 {Avoiding rook enchange so as to create attacking possiblities on blacks king} fxe4 (22... Bd7 23. Nxf5 $14) 23. Bxe4 c5 24. Bd5 {Looks dangerous for black}) 21. Bxe4 fxe4 22. Rde1 d5 23. f3 Bd6 $44 {The strong central pawns and double bishop is enough compensation. Enough to intimidate Hou Yifan too.}) 20... f3 21. Nc3 ({Computer suggestion} 21. Ng1 { Also leads to a comfortable position for black} Bh6+ 22. Kb1 Bg7 23. b3 Rbxh4 24. Rxh4 Rxh4 25. Nxf3 Rf4 {Though holdable but black's dark squared bishop wont make life easy for white}) 21... Bh6+ $6 (21... Rbxh4 $1 {This was Ushenina's chance! Keep it simple. The natural capture gives black to fight for some real advantage.} 22. Rxh4 (22. Rhe1+ Kd8 23. Ne4 Rh2 $15 {[%cal Gd8c7, Gd6d5]}) 22... Rxh4 23. Re1+ Kd8 24. Ne4 d5 25. Nd2 Rh3 26. c3 Bc5 27. Rf1 Ke7 $15 {[%csl Gf5][%cal Ge7f6] And if nothing else, black will trouble white for a long time.}) 22. Kb1 d5 23. a3 Rf4 24. Rde1+ Kd8 25. Nd1 a5 $6 (25... Bxf5 $142 26. Bxa6 (26. Bxf5 Rxf5 27. Ne3 Re5 28. Ng4 Rxe1+ 29. Rxe1 Bg7 {is fine for black too}) 26... Rg4 27. Reg1 Rxg1 28. Rxg1 Bf4 29. Rh1 Bg5 {Black will regain the pawn, but not much more.}) 26. Ne3 Rg8 27. h5 Bd7 28. Reg1 {White goes in for a series of exchanges leading to perfect balance. A practical choice by Yifan.} Rxg1+ 29. Rxg1 Rh4 30. Ng4 Rxh5 31. Ne5 f6 32. Nxd7 Kxd7 33. Rg3 Rh2 34. Rxf3 {Even though the game continued for almost another 30 moves, its difficult to imagine any real chances for either side.} Bg5 35. Ka2 Bh4 36. Kb3 Bxf2 37. Ka4 Bb6 38. b4 {There you are, draw could have been agreed here.} axb4 39. axb4 Kd6 40. Rg3 Rh1 41. c3 Bf2 42. Rf3 Rh2 43. Kb3 Ke5 44. Bc2 Kd6 45. Bd3 Kd7 46. Bc2 Rg2 47. Rd3 Rg4 48. b5 Rf4 49. bxc6+ Kxc6 50. Rd1 Rf3 51. Bd3 Bg3 52. Kc2 Kc5 53. Rf1 Re3 54. Ra1 Be5 55. Ra5+ Kc6 56. Ra6+ Kc5 57. Ra5+ Kc6 58. Ra6+ Kc5 59. Ra5+ Kc6 60. Ra6+ Kc5 61. Ra5+ {Five more games to go and Hou Yifan has a commanding 3.5-1.5 lead. Anna gets white next game so expect some no-compromises fighting chess!} 1/2-1/2

Indian IM and multiple National Women's Champion Tania Sachdev, who recently
recorded a wonderful new DVD for ChessBase – and will do more in the near future

Information and pictures by Anastasiya Karlovich, FIDE Press Officer

Game five impressions and interviews


Players Rtng
Anna Ushenina 2500
Hou Yifan 2609


10th September Opening Ceremony
11th September Game 1
12th September Game 2
13th September Rest day
14th September Game 3
15th September Game 4
16th September Rest day
17th September Game 5
18th September Game 6
19th September Rest day
20th September Game7
21st September Game 8
22nd September Rest day
23rd September Game 9
24th September Rest day
25th September Game 10
26th September Rest day
27th September Tiebreak Games
28th September Closing Ceremony


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