Prague Chess Festival, Round 3: Shankland beats Navara

by Johannes Fischer
6/17/2021 – David Navara, the number one Czech player, started the Masters at the Prague Chess Festival with two losses, and in round 3 he had to play against Sam Shankland, who seems to be in good shape in Prague. But Navara still played ambitiously which allowed Shankland to counter and to win a fine game. With 2.5/3 Shankland is now the sole leader at the Masters. | Photo: Lennart Ootes

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For some time Navara and Shankland followed a currently popular line in the English, in which Navara soom ambitiously pushed his kingside pawns ahead. But Shankland, who has written two excellent books about pawn play in modern chess (Small Steps to Giant Improvement: Master Pawn Play in Chess and Small Steps 2 Success: Mastering Passed Pawn Play) knew what to do and countered Navara's pawn push effectively and soon seized the initiative and developed a strong and successful counterattack.


David Navara | Photo: Vladimir Jagr

Jorden van Foreest is the winner of last year's Challenger at the Prague Chess Festival and since then he has become even stronger. At the beginning of the year he sensationally won the Tata Steel Tournament in which he started as a complete outsider. With a current Elo of 2701 he is the Dutch number two behind Anish Giri and number 38 in the world.

Against Radoslaw Wojtaszek he tried to win by soon liquidating into an endgame rook vs two minor pieces in a well-known line of the Nimzo-Indian but failed to achieve anything tangible.


The two other games also ended in a draw. After three rounds Shankland is sole leader with 2.5/3.

Standings after round 3


Games Masters



In the Open, rounds three and four were played on the same day. After four rounds six players share the lead with 3.5/4 each.


Rk. Name Pts.  TB1 
1 Nasuta Grzegorz 3,5 9,0
2 Krzyzanowski Marcin 3,5 9,0
3 Petr Martin 3,5 8,5
4 Plat Vojtech 3,5 8,5
5 Blohberger Felix 3,5 7,5
6 Sorm Daniel 3,5 7,5
7 Greenfeld Alon 3,0 9,0
8 Kraus Tomas 3,0 9,0
9 Finek Vaclav 3,0 8,5
10 Sreyas Payyappat 3,0 8,0
11 Seemann Jakub 3,0 8,0
12 Hollan Petr 3,0 8,0
13 Pavlidis Anastasios 3,0 8,0
14 Wachinger Nikolas 3,0 7,5

99 players

Games Open


Games Futures



Tournament page...

Johannes Fischer was born in 1963 in Hamburg and studied English and German literature in Frankfurt. He now lives as a writer and translator in Nürnberg. He is a FIDE-Master and regularly writes for KARL, a German chess magazine focusing on the links between culture and chess. On his own blog he regularly publishes notes on "Film, Literature and Chess".


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