What a great performance! Israeli GM Viktor Mikhalevski dominated the 4th Calvia International open, which ended yesterday in the Spanish city. He won his first seven games and made short draws in the last two, with a 2783 performance and a 8/9 final score. Not bad indeed... Canadian GM Kevin Spraggett finished in sole second place on 7, without any loss like the winner; Italian GM Michele Godena shared third place on 6.5 with a very good 2640 performance. Official site: http://www.calviafestival.com.
Godena will be a member of the Italian team which takes part to the European team chess championship, to be played in Crete (Greece) in October 27 to November 7. The remaining team members will be 15 y.o. GM Fabiano Caruana, IM Sabino Brunello, IM Carlo D'Amore and IM Federico Manca. The average rating of our top four boards is 2524, which means this is the strongest Italian team ever seen in an International competition. About 40 countries have confirmed their participation. The participants will include 7 of the World Top-10 GMs: Ivanchuk (UKR 2787, No. 2 in the world), Topalov (BUL 2769, No. 4), Morozevich (RUS 2755, No. 5-6), Mamedyarov (AZE 2752, No. 7), Radjabov (AZE 2742, No. 8), Aronian (ARM 2741, No. 9), Shirov (ESP 2739, No. 10). The Women's event will also feature world stars such as GMs Alexandra Kosteniuk, Maia Chiburdanidze, Tatiana Kosintseva, Antoaneta Stefanova, Elisabeth Paehtz and Almira Skripchenko. Official site of the event: http://www.euroteams2007.org.
Last but not least, a strong category 15 event is taking place in Barcelona, Spain. American GM Hikaru Nakamura leads on 5 points after 7 rounds, followed by Cuban GM Lenier Dominguez on 4.5, Spanish IM Josep Oms Pallise, Azeri GM Vugar Gashimov and Polish GM Michal Krasenkow on 4. Nakamura started with 3.5/4 and then 5/6, then he lost his only game so far against Oms Pallise in round 7. Official site: http://www.escacs.cat/ciutat07.
And now here is a brilliant win by Nakamura himself in Barcelona...
Krasenkow,M (2668) - Nakamura,H (2648) [A14], Barcelona 19.10.2007
1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.g3 d5 4.Bg2 Be7 5.0–0 0–0 6.b3 a5 7.Nc3 c6 8.d4 Nbd7
8...b6 is the main alternetive. The game Lautier-Kramnik, Cannes 1993, continued 9.Bb2 Ba6 10.Nd2 Ra7 11.Qc2 Rd7 12.e3 c5 13.Rfd1 cxd4 14.exd4 Nc6 15.Nb5 Nb4 16.Qb1 Bb7 17.a3 Na6 18.Qd3 Qa8 19.Qe2 Nc7 20.a4 Rc8 21.Rac1 Nxb5 22.axb5 Rdc7 and Black got the initiative and eventually won.
9.Bb2 is also playable; the game Dizdar-Drasko, Belgrade 1988, soon ended in a draw after 9...b6 10.Nd2 Ba6 11.e4 Rc8 12.Re1 e5 13.dxe5 Nxe5 14.Nxd5 cxd5 15.Bxe5 dxc4 16.Nxc4 Bxc4 17.bxc4 Rxc4 18.Qe2 Qc8 19.Bxf6 Bxf6 20.e5 Rc2 21.Qe4 1/2–1/2.
9...Re8 10.Rd1 has also been played in a few games.
The most active choice. After 10.Rd1 Ba6 11.Nd2 b5 12.e3 Qc7 Black can easily equalize (Donchenko-Paramonov, Chigorin Mem. 2000).
11.e5 is more common and probably more precise. After 11...Ne8 12.Ne2 b5 13.c5 b4 14.a4 bxa3?! 15.Rxa3 White got an edge in the game Timman-Karner, Tallinn 1973.
This looks to be a new move. After 11...Rc8 12.Re1?! c5 13.dxc5 d4! 14.Na4 Nxc5 15.Nxc5 Bxc5 16.Qd3 e5 17.Bh3 Rb8 Black got a slight advantage in the game Renet-Bronstein, Oviedo 1992.
12.exd5 cxd4 13.Nb5 exd5
The best choice, but 13...Bxb5!? is an alternative to be considered. After 14.dxe6 fxe6 15.Bxa8 Qxa8 16.cxb5 Ne5 Black has a good compensation in return for the sacrificed exchange.
14.Nxd4 Rc8 15.Re1?!
This looks to be an inaccuracy. 15.Nf5 had to be considered.
Now Black puts a lot of pressure on the c4 pawn. White must be really very careful...
16.Bb2 Re8 17.Qd1
After 17.Rad1 Bc5 18.Rxe8+ Qxe8 19.Bc3 Nb6 Black has a strong initiative anyway.
17...bxc4 18.bxc4 Qb6 19.Rb1 dxc4 20.Nc6?
Hard to believe it, this is the decisive mistake... White had to play 20.Bc3 and after 20...Qc5 21.Qa4 Nd5 22.Bxa5 N7f6 Black had the better chances, but the game is not finished yet.
Weak, but after 21.Rxe7 Rxe7 22.Bxf6 Nxf6 23.Rxb6 Rxb6 Black wins easily anyway.
A brilliant and very nice blow!
22.Kxf2 Bc5+ 23.Kf3
23.Bd4 Bxd4+ 24.Kf3 Rf6+ 25.Kg4 Ne5+ 26.Kg5 Bc8 27.Be4 Rf2 is losing as well.
23...Rxf6+ 24.Kg4 Ne5+ 25.Kg5
25.Rxe5 Bc8+ 26.Rf5 Bxf5+ 27.Kh4 Rh6+ 28.Kg5 Bc8 is not better for White.
25...Rg6+ 26.Kh5 f6
White can't avoid mate or huge material losses.
The only way to avoid mate was 27.Bd5+ Kh8 28.Kh4 Rh6+ 29.Qh5 , but after 29...g5+ 30.Kh3 Rxh5+ 31.Kg2 Rd8 White can resign.
27...Rxe5+ 28.Kh4 Bc8 0–1
Now White is loss: 29.Bd5+ Rxd5 30.g4 Rd3! 31.Qf3 Rxf3 32.Nxf3 Rxg4+ 33.Kh3 Rg5+ 34.Kh4 Bf2#. A beautiful combination by Nakamura!