Reggio: Almasi leads by a full point

by ChessBase
1/6/2010 – With one round to go the seven-time Hungarian champion Zoltan Almasi has scored 6.5/8, a full point ahead of his nearest rival, Gata Kamsky. Almasi has won five of his last six games, including a key game against Viktor Bologan in round six. His performance: 2859. Kamsky and Almasi face each other tomorrow in the final round. Pictorial report.

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52nd Reggio Emilia Tournament

The Masters group is an invitational with ten players with an average rating of 2623 (= Category 15). The rate of play is 100 minutes for 40 moves, then 50 minutes for the rest of the game, with 30 seconds increment given for each move from the start of the game.

Round six

There were four decisive games in this round, making it the most blood-drenched so far. In rounds one, three, four and five there were three decisive games each, in round two it was two games, in rounds seven and eight there was just one decisive game each.

Viktor Bologan faces a Berlin Defence by Zoltan Almasi (contemplating his 9th move)

Bologan, who hadn't played a single draw so far, gave up a bishop in the endgame for attacking chances which did not materialise.

Bologan,V (2692) - Almasi,Z (2704) [C67]
52nd It Reggio Emilia ITA (6), 03.01.2010
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.0-0 Nxe4 5.d4 Nd6 6.Bxc6 dxc6 7.dxe5 Nf5 8.Qxd8+ Kxd8 9.Nc3 Ke8 10.h3 Ne7 11.Re1 Ng6 12.a3 h6 13.Be3 Be7 14.Rad1 Bd7 15.Ne4 Bf5 16.Ng3 Bxc2 17.Rd2 Bb3 18.Nh5 Bf8 19.Nd4 Be6 20.f4 Ne7 21.g4 Nd5 22.Bf2 Rg8 23.Kf1 Bd7 24.f5 c5 25.Nb3 Bb5+ 26.Kg1 Bc6 27.Nxc5 Bxc5 28.Bxc5 b6 29.Bf2 Bb7 30.Bh4 c6 31.e6 f6 32.Rc1 Rd8 33.Kf2 Ke7 34.b4 a6 35.Rcd1 g5 36.Bg3 Rc8 37.Bh2 Rgd8 38.Ng3 c5 39.bxc5 bxc5 40.Rb2 Ba8 41.Ne2 c4 42.Rc1 c3 43.Rbc2 Rc4

44.Nxc3 Rxc3 45.Rxc3 Nxc3 46.Rxc3 Rd2+ 47.Ke3 Rxh2 48.Rc7+ Kd8

After 49.e7+ Ke8 (49...Kxc7 50.e8Q+–) 50.Rc8+ Kxe7 51.Rxa8 Rxh3+ 52.Ke4 Rxa3 53.Kd5 White is two pawns down but should be able to hold the draw. 49.Rf7? Rxh3+ 50.Kd4 Bf3 51.Rxf6 Bxg4 52.Ke5 Rf3 53.Rxh6 Bxf5 54.Rh5 Ke7 55.Rxg5 Bxe6 56.a4 Ra3 57.Rg7+ Bf7 58.Rg4 Be8 59.Rg7+ Kf8 60.Ra7 Rxa4. This way White is a piece and pawn down and is going to lose. But the endgame is not trivial, and after some pushing and probing Almasi takes home the full point. 61.Kd5 Ra1 62.Kc4 a5 63.Kc3 a4 64.Kb2 Rd1 65.Ka3 Bd7 66.Ra5 Ke7 67.Re5+ Kd6 68.Re3 Kc5 69.Rf3 Kb5 70.Re3 Rd5 71.Rf3 Ka5 72.Re3 Rb5 73.Re7 Rb3+ 74.Ka2 Bc6 75.Re1 Bd5 76.Ka1 Rd3 77.Rb1 a3 78.Rg1 Kb4 79.Rb1+ Ka4 80.Rg1 Rc3 81.Rb1 Be4 82.Rg1 Kb3 83.Re1 Bd3 84.Rd1 Bc4 85.Rb1+ Ka4 86.Rg1 Rc2 87.Re1 Ra2+ 88.Kb1 Rd2 89.Ka1 Kb3 90.Rb1+ Rb2 91.Rd1 Rc2 92.Rb1+ Kc3 93.Rg1 Bd3 94.Rd1 Bc4 95.Rg1 Ra2+ 96.Kb1 Rf2 97.Ka1 Bf1 98.Rg3+ Bd3 99.Rh3 Rd2 100.Rh2 Rd1+ 0-1.

Gata Kamsky won a Fianchetto Grünfeld against Sabino Brunello in crushing style in round six

Konstantin Landa won the white side of a Sicilian Dragon 65 moves

GM Eltaj Safarli, 17, of Baku, Azerbaijan, lost to GM Fabiano Caruana, Italy, who is one month his junior

Round seven

Safarli and Hungarian GM Zoltan Almasi analyse their Ruy Lopez Schliemann (Almasi won in 61 moves)

Almasi,Z (2704) - Safarli,E (2592) [C70]
52nd It Reggio Emilia ITA (7), 04.01.2010
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 4.Ba4 b5 5.Bb3 Na5 6.0-0 d6 7.d4 exd4 8.Nxd4 Bb7 9.c4 c5 10.Nf5 g6 11.Ng3 h5 12.Nc3 h4 13.Nge2 Nxc4 14.Bxc4 bxc4 15.h3 Bc6 16.Nd5 Bg7 17.Nec3 Rb8 18.Re1 Kf8 19.Ne3 Bd4 20.Nxc4 Rb4 21.Qd3 Qf6 22.Be3 Bb5 23.Nxb5 axb5 24.Nb6 Qe6 25.Nd5 Rc4 26.b3 Bxa1 27.bxc4 bxc4 28.Qxc4 Bf6 29.Qd3 Bd8 30.Rd1 Nf6 31.Nxf6 Bxf6 32.Qxd6+ Qxd6 33.Rxd6 Kg7 34.Bxc5 Rb8 35.Rd1 Rb2 36.a3 g5 37.Kf1 Ra2 38.Rd5 Kg6 39.Bb4 Bb2 40.Rd3 f6 41.Ke1 Kf7 42.Kd1 Kg6 43.Bc5 Kf7 44.Rd7+ Kg6 45.Ra7 Bc3 46.Be3 Be5 47.a4 Bc3 48.Bb6 Rb2 49.Be3 Ra2 50.Bc5 Rd2+ 51.Kc1 Ra2 52.Bb6 Be1 53.Kb1 Rd2 54.a5 Bxf2 55.Bxf2 Rxf2 56.a6 Rf1+ 57.Kb2 Rf2+ 58.Kb3 Rxg2 59.Ra8 Rg3+ 60.Kb4 Re3 61.Re8 1-0.

Konstantin Landa and Gata Kamsky drew their Classical Caro Kann in 44 moves

Round eight

This game between Viktor Bologan and Gata Kamsky (French Defence) was drawn in 40 moves

Zoltan Almasi, unplugged, defeated Italian GM Daniele Vocaturo in a Queen's Indian

Almasi,Z (2704) - Vocaturo,D (2500) [E06]
52nd It Reggio Emilia ITA (8), 05.01.2010
1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.g3 d5 4.d4 Be7 5.Bg2 0-0 6.0-0 b6 7.cxd5 exd5 8.Nc3 Bb7 9.Ne5 Na6 10.Bf4 c5 11.Rc1 Rb8 12.Nb5 Qe8 13.a4 Ra8 14.e3 Ne4 15.h4 f6 16.Nf3 h6 17.Nd2 Rd8 18.dxc5 Bxc5 19.Nb3 g5 20.hxg5 fxg5 21.Nxc5 bxc5 22.Bc7 Nxc7 23.Nxc7 Qe5 24.Nb5 Qxb2 25.Qh5 Qf6 26.Bxe4 dxe4 27.Rxc5 Rd2 28.Qh2 Rfd8 29.g4

Until now 20-year-old Daniele Vocaturo has bewen doing fine against a grandmaster rated 200 points above him, but now he picks a flawed plan: 29...Rd1? 30.Nd4 Rxf1+ 31.Kxf1 Ba6+ 32.Kg1 Qb6 33.Qe5 Bc8? The final mistake in the losing battle.

34.Rc6 1-0. Daniele Vocaturo made his three GM norms in just six months and has been invited to play in the 2010 Wijk aan Zee tournament in Group C. He is being trained by GM Mihail Marin. Zoltan Almasi has won five of his last six games and now leads the field by a full point. His performance: 2859.

Standings after eight rounds

Of the 40 games played so far 20 were drawn = 49%. White won eleven (28%) and Black nine games (24%).

Photos provided by Giorgio Gozzi


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