No rest for chess lovers

Chess world never takes a pause. A big competition (Euro championship) finished just a few days ago, three strong tournaments has started yesterday, all together. The strongest is the 15th Sigeman & Co event, which takes place in Malmo, Sweden (average rating: 2553). Bulgarian Ivan Cheparinov, Indian young star Parimarjan Negi and Dutch veteran Jan Timman are among the participants. Another interesting tourney is the Gausdall Chess Classics (av. Rating 2537), held in the famous high mountain hotel in Gausdal, Norway. Local idol Magnus Carlsen is the top rated player, followed by Polish Michal Krasenkow and Russian Alexey Dreev; American WGM Irina Krush is the surprising leader with a perfect score after two rounds. Finally we have the 2007 Moscow championship (I think you’ll guess where it takes place :-) ). Eight players with a 2527 average rating will battle for the city crown until April 24.
Italian team championship will start tomorrow in Palermo, Sicily. The star of the event is Spanish super GM Francisco Vallejo Pons, who is a member of “Il Massimo” team with FMs Renzo Ramondino, Sergio Corso and Maurizio Genovese among the others; the top seed team is Marostica, with GMs Robert Hubner, Markus Stangl, Michele Godena and Lexy Ortega. I don’t know, by the way, if all these players will take part in the event. Last year winner is Obiettivo Risarcimento Padova, which can count on Albanian GM Erald Dervishi and Italian IMs Fabio Bellini, Carlo D’Amore, Daniele Vocaturo and Ennio Arlandi. I hope I will have some pictures from Palermo in the next days: if so, I’ll put them on www.messaggeroscacchi.it. I’m also waiting for the moves of a blindfold game played yesterday between Vallejo and Italian master Riccardo Gueci: I hope you’ll see it on this Blog by Sunday :-).
Just a couple of days after Caruana, another young Italian talent, 15 y.o. Axel Rombaldoni from Pesaro (his brother Denis played in the GM event), scored his first IM norm in Budapest, tying for first with Russian FM Alexander Khantuev: he won seven games, lost two and draw just one. Congratulations Axel!
Another Italian player, candidate master Alex Brunetti from Como, will face Veselin Topalov on May 8 - as reported on March 24 -, just one day before the start of the Mtel Masters super-tournament. Now we know the details of the match, which will be held in Grand Hotel Sofia. Alex will have White pieces and Topalov will play blind (which means, we hope, he won’t be able to see neither the chessboard nor Danailov :-) ); each player will have 30 minutes to finish the game. Don’t understimate your opponent, Veselin!
And now here is an astonishing loss by Alexei Dreev in Gausdal: he was really crushed by… Krush in the second round, after playing the horrible 19.Rh5??...

Dreev,A (2633) - Krush,I (2464) [D23], Gausdal 19.04.2007
1.d4 d5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.c4 dxc4 4.Qa4+ Nc6 5.Nc3 Nd5 6.e4 Nb6 7.Qd1 Bg4 8.d5 Ne5 9.Bf4 Ng6 10.Bg3 e5 11.dxe6 Qxd1+ 12.Rxd1 fxe6 13.Be2 Bd6 14.Nb5 Bxg3 15.hxg3 Ke7 16.Nxc7 Rac8 17.Nb5 Bxf3 18.gxf3 Ne5 19.Rh5??
Much better was 19.Nd6 or even the immediate 19.f4.
19… Rc5 20.f4 Nd3+ 21.Kd2 Nxf2 22.Rxc5 Nxe4+
That’s the point. Now Black takes the Rook back and White has no compensation for the two pawns loss.
23.Kc2 Nxc5 24.Bf3 a6 25.Nc3 Rd8 26.Rg1 Rd3 27.Be2 Rd4 28.Re1 Kf6 29.Bf3 h6 30.Nd1 Nd3 31.Re2 Na4 32.a3 b5 33.Ne3 Nac5 34.Bg2 h5 35.Kc3 Rd6 36.Nxc4??
The last mistake in a desperate position.
36… Na4+ 37.Kb3 0–1
After 37…Rd4 (or the simple 37…Ndc5+) White loses a piece. A game to forget for Dreev. And very soon.

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