Chess

Bazna Kings Round Four Report

Radjabov and Carlsen win, take over the lead

The 2010 Bazna Kings, the strongest tournament in Romanian chess history, continued Thursday with round four games. Pairings are Magnus Carlsen – Wang Yue, Teimour Radjabov – Boris Gelfand and Ruslan Ponomariov – Liviu-Dieter Nisipeanu.

Holding Black pieces against Ponomariov, Nisipeanu opted for Bluemenfeld gambit, which is relatively unexplored but usually slightly better for White. The Romanian already played this before and achieved some nice victories.

An original position has arisen and the players exchanged punches with temporary piece sacrifices. After the dust settled down, White remained with an extra pawn, which also happened to be a dangerous passer. Black was relying on a vague counterplay against weakened enemy King.

Ponamariov pushed the pawn down to the seventh rank and tied the Black pieces pretty nice. Taking a short break to secure the King, Ponamariov then attacked with heavy pieces and Nisipeanu resigned facing the imminent checkmate.

Bazna Radjabov

Radjabov restored his confidence with the beautiful victory in round three, obviously helping him to get in the mood and storm Gelfand’s solid Petroff today. Inspired attack by the Azeri left the World Cup winner desperately trying to cover the King.

Temporary piece sacrifice brought the King out for a walk and Black was forced to return the piece because of some neat tactics on the 7th rank.

The resulting position with heavy pieces and opposite-coloured Bishops fancied the attacking side. Black was forced to seek exchanges in order to prevent checkmate, which Radjabov used to convert the position into winning Rook endgame. Gelfand resigned before the first time control.

Magnus Carlsen Bazna

Carlsen also anticipated Petroff defence from Wang Yue and that is why he “deviated” and played King’s Gambit!? A nice reminder of the romantic 19th century… Black defended with central countergambit, but chose a modest version with 3…exf4.

Black got himself a pair of Bishops, but the position was equal. Still, the surprise must have affected Wang, traded a pair of Bishops and allowed White to advance central pawns. It still wasn’t much but as Black slowly retreated the “trend” was in White’s favour.

Carlsen’s pawn advanced to the 7th rank and Wang, after some preparatory moves, decided to give up the exchange in order to remove the danger. Wang was hoping to establish a fortress, but a careless advance of the g-pawn allowed White to create a passer and at that point the game was decided. Wang resigned soon after. Replay the game with computer analysis.

Carlsen and Radjabov move into the lead with 2.5 points each, Gelfand and Nisipeanu remain on two points and are now joined by Ponomariov, while Wang is last with one point next to his name.

Round one report / Round two report / Round three report / Photo gallery

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