Prague Challengers 2023 R2-3: Akash misses a win against Motylev
Pentala Harikrishna drew his third game in-a-row at 5th Prague International Chess Festival 2023 Masters. He had a hard fought draw against the tournament leader, Germany no.1 Vincent Keymer. Ray Robson (USA) scored the sole victory of the round in the Masters section. He played sublime chess in his first-ever rated game encounter against the legendary Boris Gelfand (ISR). Robson and Keymer are currently in the lead 2/3, followed by six players at 1.5/3 including Harikrishna. In the Challengers section, Akash G missed a golden opportunity to win against Alexander Motylev (ROU). Akash had a decisive advantage for the better part of the game. In the endgame, he had the most definite opportunity. Unfortunately for him, he overlooked it. Round 4 for Masters and Challengers, and Round 3 Open starts today at 3 p.m. local time, 6:30 p.m. IST. Photo: Anežka Kružíková/Prague International Chess Festival
Bartel wins two in-a-row
GM Mateusz Bartel (POL) defeated IM Richard Stalmach (CZE) and FM Vaclav Finek (CZE) in Round 2 and 3 respectively to gain sole lead 2.5/3 in the Challengers section. In the Open event, six Indians - GM Mitrabha Guha, GM Deep Sengupta, IM Ameya Audi, Anish Gandhi, Alok Sinha and FM Sharan Rao have made a perfect start 2/2.
Masters Round 3: Keymer - Harikrishna: 0.5-0.5
Pentala Harikrishna (2704) has never lost a rated tournament game against Vincent Keymer (GER, 2690). That remained unchanged yesterday.
White went 9.Kd2 in the anticipation of the queens getting traded. 9...Nd7 10.Bd3 Bxd3 11.Kxd3 and the game reached the above position. Keymer's fellow country mate Alexander Donchenko had this position earlier this year against Erwin l'Ami at the 85th Tata Steel Challengers 2023 in a losing effort. The game eventually ended in a draw as neither player made any mistake.
Robson - Gelfand
In his first-ever rated game against the legendary, Boris Gelfand (ISR, 2668), Ray Robson (USA, 2689) made the most out of his opportunity. He gained an exchange on the 20th move 20.Bxb3 Rxb3 after Black decided against keeping the rook as it would have made things worse for Black in a hurry. 21.Rc1 Rxb2 22.Qc3 Qxc3+ 23.Rxc3 f6 24.0-0 Kf7 the realization of White's advantage into a victory was far from easy.
White is ahead by an exchange. However, the rook is unable to gain an entry towards Black's back-rank, moreover he has his own weaknesses to worry about. 31...Kxf4 32.g3+ an attempt to make way for the rook Kf5 33.gxh4 Kg6 34.Bc1 e5 35.c5 Be2 36.Rb3 Kf7 37.Rb7 finally White got an opportunity to improve his rook Ke6 38.Rc7. White eventually went on to win the game with some precise practical play.
Challengers Round 2: Gledura - Erwin: 1-0
GM Benjamin Gledura (HUN, 2645) had faced the reigning Netherlands champion, GM Erwin l'Ami (2645) only once before in a rated game at 81st Tata Steel Challengers in 2019. The Hungarian won that game. This time also, he repeated the feat.
The sole intention of 27.Rdh1 is to crash through the h-file and land a rook on h8. How to stop that? 27...h5! 28.gxh6 Kh7 the outcome probably wouldn't have changed but it still would have kept some fighting chances. 27...Rf7 28.Rh6 Kf8 29.Bf6 Rc8 30.Rxg6 White has managed to crash through. He managed to win the game in another eight moves.
Bartel - Stalmach
GM Mateusz Bartel (POL, 2609) has a crushing on IM Richard Stalmach's (CZE, 2436) kingside. Find out the correct way to finish it just like Bartel did in the game.
Finek - Bartel
Black sacrificed his knight at f2 few moves ago 15...Nxf2 with the intention of exchanging his two knights for a rook and pawn. Generally that would not be a good idea especially since his opponent has all minor pieces present on the board. However, the difference here is, White's pieces are underdeveloped, the a1-rook and c1-bishop will take some time to get into the action. Black factored it in and went ahead with his plan. The unnatural and counter-intuitive 20.Qxf2 is the correct continuation for White according to the computer. 20...Qb5 21.Bf1 Bxh3 22.Bxh3 Qxd3 23.Bf1 Qc2 24.Nc4 Qxe4 25.Bf4 is what it recommends. However, White was just a 12-year-old kid, he opted for the humane 20.Nxf2 Bf6 21.a3 Rac8 and Black went on to win in another ten moves.
Motylev - Akash
GM Akash G (2483) was winning for the better part of the game against GM Alexander Motylev (ROU, 2597). His most definite opportunity arose in the endgame after 79.Kh3. Find out the finish which Black could have done.
The Round-Robin tournaments will take place from 21st to 30th June 2023. Every day except the last round, games will start at 3 p.m. local time, 6:30 p.m. IST). Monday 26th June is a rest day. The ninth round game on 30th June will start at 11 a.m. local time, 2:30 p.m. IST.
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Round 3 results
|1||2||2690||GM||KEYMER Vincent||½ - ½||GM||HARIKRISHNA Pentala||2704||10||PGN|
|2||3||2689||GM||NAVARA David||½ - ½||GM||NGUYEN Thai Dai Van||2653||1||PGN|
|3||4||2711||GM||SHANKLAND Sam||½ - ½||GM||WANG Hao||2722||9||PGN|
|4||5||2685||GM||MARTIROSYAN Haik M.||½ - ½||GM||DEAC Bogdan-Daniel||2693||8||PGN|
|5||6||2689||GM||ROBSON Ray||1 - 0||GM||GELFAND Boris||2668||7||PGN|
Standings after Round 3
|4||1||GM||NGUYEN Thai Dai Van||CZE||2653||1,5||0||2,50||1|
|6||5||GM||MARTIROSYAN Haik M.||ARM||2685||1,5||0||2,25||1|
Round 4 pairings
|1||10||2704||GM||HARIKRISHNA Pentala||GM||GELFAND Boris||2668||7|
|2||8||2693||GM||DEAC Bogdan-Daniel||GM||ROBSON Ray||2689||6|
|3||9||2722||GM||WANG Hao||GM||MARTIROSYAN Haik M.||2685||5|
|4||1||2653||GM||NGUYEN Thai Dai Van||GM||SHANKLAND Sam||2711||4|
|5||2||2690||GM||KEYMER Vincent||GM||NAVARA David||2689||3|
Round 3 results
|1||2||2436||IM||STALMACH Richard||½ - ½||GM||GLEDURA Benjamin||2645||10||PGN|
|2||3||2409||FM||FINEK Vaclav||0 - 1||GM||BARTEL Mateusz||2609||1||PGN|
|3||4||2611||GM||PECHAC Jergus||0 - 1||GM||PULTINEVICIUS Paulius||2530||9||PGN|
|4||5||2597||GM||MOTYLEV Alexander||½ - ½||GM||AKASH G||2483||8||PGN|
|5||6||2645||GM||L'AMI Erwin||0 - 1||IM||VYKOUK Jan||2467||7||PGN|
Standings after Round 3
Round 4 pairings
|1||10||2645||GM||GLEDURA Benjamin||IM||VYKOUK Jan||2467||7|
|2||8||2483||GM||AKASH G||GM||L'AMI Erwin||2645||6|
|3||9||2530||GM||PULTINEVICIUS Paulius||GM||MOTYLEV Alexander||2597||5|
|4||1||2609||GM||BARTEL Mateusz||GM||PECHAC Jergus||2611||4|
|5||2||2436||IM||STALMACH Richard||FM||FINEK Vaclav||2409||3|
The time control is 90'/40 moves + 30'/end & 30"/move.