Cairns Cup: Krush and Khotenashvili grab crucial wins

by Klaus Besenthal
6/11/2023 – In the seventh round of the Cairns Cup played on Saturday, sole leader Anna Zatonskih got a rest day. Elisabeth Paehtz missed her chance to catch up with Zatonskih, as the German grandmaster lost to Bella Khotenashvili. Thanks to this win, the Georgian now stands half a point behind Zatonskih. Irina Krush is also back in the mix after beating Harika Dronavalli. Krush is one point behind Zatonskih, but the two still have to play each other. | Photo: Austin Fuller

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The third stage of the game

Elisabeth Paehtz entered the round in sole second place, a full point behind leader Anna Zatonskih. The German grandmaster had the black pieces against Bella Khotenashvili

Paehtz had been in a bad position for a while after the opening phase, but then managed to restore the balance. Grandmaster Karsten Müller shows in his instructive analysis why she lost the game in a rather tricky endgame.

Bella Khotenashvili

After starting the tournament with two defeats, Bella Khotenashvili has now won four games in a row. | Photo: Austin Fuller

Meanwhile, Irina Krush and Harika Dronavalli reached a theoretical rook ending, one that every chess player no matter their level should know: the Lucena position. Karsten Müller once again dissected the nuances of the position.

Irina Krush

Irina Krush will face Anna Zatonskih in Monday’s final round | Photo: Austin Fuller

Results - Round 7

Standings - Round 7

Cairns Cup 2023

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Klaus Besenthal is computer scientist, has followed and still follows the chess scene avidly since 1972 and since then has also regularly played in tournaments.