Essent 2006: Judit loses, Veselin wins

by ChessBase
10/28/2006 – Instead of going for a draw and a sure tournament victory Judit Polgar remained true to character and went for the jugular. However a pugnacious Shakhryar Mamedyarov fought back and delivered her first defeat in Essent. Veselin Topalov outplayed Ivan Sokolov for his second win in a row. Report with video by Peter Doggers.

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Essent Chess Tournament 2006

The 10th edition of the Essent Chess Tournament is taking place from October 20 to 28, 2006 in Hoogeveen, Holland. As in the past years there are a number of competitions: a Crown Group, a strong Essent Open, an Amateur Tournament, a pub tournament and an event for youth. The games are being broadcast live on the official site and on Full details on the event are available on our first Essent report.

Round five

Anyone would have expected Judit Polgar to go for a rock-solid draw with the white pieces, to ensure at least joint victory in this category 20 tournament. But then of course they would be ignoring the driving characteristic of this incredible player. Judit once again went all out on the attack – and suffered defeat at the hands of a cunningly operating Shakhryar Mamedyarov.

The pugnacious Mr Mamedyarov [photo Fred Lucas]

Polgar,Ju (2710) - Mamedyarov,S (2728) [C95]
10th Essent Hoogeveen NED (5), 27.10.2006
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0-0 Be7 6.Re1 b5 7.Bb3 d6 8.c3 0-0 9.h3 Nb8 10.d4 Nbd7 11.Nbd2 Bb7 12.Bc2 Re8 13.Nf1 Bf8 14.Ng3 g6 15.b3 d5 16.Bg5 h6

17.Bh4 g5 18.Nxg5 hxg5 19.Bxg5 exd4 20.e5 Rxe5 21.Rxe5 Nxe5 22.cxd4 Nc6

This position has occurred at least twice, in 2005, with White getting just half a point (there are other examples in the PAL/CSS Freestyle tournaments on In both cases the continuation was 23.Nh5, a move that Fritz fervently pleads for: 23.Nh5 Be7 24.Bxf6 Bxf6 25.Qd3 Bxd4 26.Qh7+ Kf8 27.Qh6+ Ke8 28.Re1+ Ne7 29.Qh7 a) 29.Ng7+ Kd7 30.Rxe7+ Kxe7 31.Nf5+ Kd7 32.Nxd4 c5 and black is doing fine; b) 29.Qg5 Kf8 30.Bh7 (or 30.Qh6+ with repetition) 30...Bc3 31.h4 Qd6 (31...Bxe1?? allows 32.Qh6+ Ke8 33.Nf6#) 32.Rxe7 Re8 and the rook is untouchable due to the mate on g8, and White has an advantage. All this is very complicated, and Judit spent considerable time mulling over the position. In the end she came up with 23.Nf5N?! which leaves Fritz cringing, and which the analysts will have to evaluate after deeper study. Mamedyarov went on to win the game, after Judit Polgar lost her struggle to keep up the pressure on the black king.

23...Bc8 24.Rc1 Bxf5 25.Bxf5 Qd6 26.Bh4 Ne7 27.Bg3 Qb4 28.Bb1 c6 29.Be5 Bg7 30.a3 Qxa3 31.Rc3 Nd7 32.Rg3 Nxe5 33.dxe5 Qb4 34.Rg4 Qc3 35.f4 d4 36.Kh2 Nd5 37.f5 d3 38.Qxd3 Qxe5+ 39.Rg3 Nf6 40.Qf3 Rd8 0-1.

Video of game and analysis Polgar-Mamedyarov,
posted on YouTube by Peter Doggers

With the appearance of his manager Silvio Danailov in round four in Essent Veselin Topalov is transformed, playing with confidence and courage and winning both games since then. In round five he outplayed Ivan Sokolov seemingly effortlessly to come within striking range for top place (theoretically: if Topalov beats Judit Polgar in round six with white, and Mamedyarov loses his white game to Ivan Sokolov, then Veselin Topalov would share first with the other two, with Mamedyarov winning out on tiebreak points: 10.25 to Topalov's 9.25 and Judit's 8.25. Saturday's the day.

Veselin Topalov with a young fan [photo Fred Lucas]

Sokolov,Iv (2670) - Topalov,V (2813) [A43]
10th Essent Hoogeveen NED (5), 27.10.2006
1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 c5 3.d5 g6 4.Nc3 Bg7 5.e4 d6 6.Bb5+ Nfd7 7.a4 Na6 8.0-0 Nc7 9.Re1 Nxb5 10.axb5 0-0 11.Bf4 Nb6 12.e5 Bf5 13.h3 h6 14.Qe2 g5 15.Bg3 Qd7 16.h4 f6 17.e6 Qe8 18.Nh2 Bg6 19.f4 Bh5 20.Qd3 gxf4 21.Bxf4 Qg6 22.Nf1 f5 23.Kh2 Qg4 24.Qg3 Qxg3+ 25.Nxg3 Be8 26.Nge2 Kh7 27.Bg3 Nc4 28.b3 Ne3 29.Rac1 Rg8 30.Nd1 Nxd5 31.c4 Nb4 32.Ne3 a6 33.bxa6 Rxa6 34.Nxf5 Bf6 35.Nf4 Ra2 36.Nd5 Nxd5 37.cxd5 Bh5 38.Rf1 Rd2 39.Ne3 Bd4 40.Nc4 Rd3 41.Bf4 Rxb3 42.Nd2 Rb2 43.Rb1 Bg6 44.Rxb2 Bxb2 45.Rf3 Rf8 46.Nc4 Be4 47.Bxd6 Bxf3 0-1.


Tournament schedule:

Date Round Robin Open Group Amateurs
October 20 opening 1st round 1st round
October 21   2nd round 2nd round
October 22 1st round 3th round 3th round
October 23 2nd round 4th round 4th round
October 24 3th round 5th round 5th round
October 25 Rest day 6th round 6th round
October 26 4th round 7th round 7th round
October 27 5th round 8th round 8th round
October 28 6th round 9th round 9th round

Playing hours: All rounds start at 14.00 hours daily. The final round (October 28th) starts at noon. The Amateur Groups have other starting times: Group I: 14.30 hours (October 28th at 13.00 hours); Groep II: 10.00 hours (October 28th at 9.00 hours).


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