Women's World Championship: Ju Wenjun surges ahead

by Georgios Souleidis
5/7/2018 – Tan Zhongyi has a rating of 2522, is number ten on the women's rating list, and reigning Women's World Champion, but with a rating of 2571 challenger Ju Wenjun is number two on the women's rating list and favourite to win the Women's World Championship match in Shanghai. Ju indeed dominates at the start of the ten-game match and after three games leads 2½-½. In game three Tan lost in 27 moves after misplaying the opening. | Photos: Gu Xiaobing

The Catalan: A complete repertoire for White! The Catalan: A complete repertoire for White!

The Catalan is one of the most solid openings for White. It forms part of the large and strong fianchetto family in which White builds his strategy mainly around the bishop on g2. Grandmaster Victor Bologan covers all of Black’s replies to the Catalan, some of which can even transpose to other openings such as the Tarrasch System and the Queen’s Indian. Suffice it to say that the Catalan rules!

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Game 3: Ju Wenjun wins with the Catalan

Game 3 of the Women's World Championship was a theoretical duel. Ju Wenjun played with White and opted for a Catalan. Up to move 12 both players followed a well-known line which they had already discussed in a game at the Chinese Women's Championship 2013. But with 12...Be7 Tan Zhongyi treid something new and deviated from her own example and almost all other games in this line in which Black usually removes the queen from the d-file to avoid unpleasant surprises by White's rook on d1.

It is unclear whether this was preparation because two moves later Tan ventured 14...g5? which looks rather violent and is a decisive mistake. This move soon cost Tan a pawn and weakened Black's king's position beyond repair. The black king was stuck in the center which Ju exploited with energetic play that forced Tan to resign after 27 moves because she could not avoid serious material losses.

 

Ju Wenjun won the second game in a row

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Regulations (FIDE)...




Georgios Souleidis is an International Master with a degree in media and communication studies. He is an experienced journalist, author, photographer, chess trainer, editor-in-chief for the German Bundesliga, a regular contributor to the chessbase website, German chess magazine SCHACH, and previously blogged on his own site entwicklungsvorsprung.de.
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