Report Round 2

14:08 Round 2 has started! 

We're off again! Today both match games started with 1.e4, which we more or less expected with Wei Yi and Jorden van Foreest playing White. And in spite of Wei Yi's reputation as a Sicilian slayer, Vasily Ivanchuk did take up the challenge and played 1...c5. Bravo!

There were no games in the Open yesterday that were beautiful enough to deserve the brilliancy prize. But Dinara Saduassakova did win a prize: all her moves against Alef Boer coincided for no less than 100% with the first choice of the strong ChessBase computer!

Updated: 17:08 Less work for Tania Sachdev today...? 

The first decision is here: Jan Boersma won by forfait against Pieter Hopman, who wanted a bye in the second round.

Tania Sachdev 'put the lights out' in the playing hall yesterday because she failed to convert a good piece sacrifice and had to work very hard for the point. Today she may finish earlier, as she already has a big advantage right after the opening. It looks as if Amir Nicolai may have forgotten about Qa4 checks when he played 8...c5, and after 9.Nxc4 there are also checks on d6 in the air.

15:38 Violent girls' game 

Tania Sachdev may be pipped at the post, since Lara Schulze looks to be winning in a violent attack on the king of Robin Duson, who bravely started the game with a Dragon Sicilian.

Jonathan Carlstedt also looks to be in big trouble against his countryman Carsten Stanetzek, who already won a crazy game from Onno Elgersma yesterday.

The youngest member of the Van Foreest clan, Machteld, is having a hard time against Axel Fehr with white in a sharp Sicilian. But we also applaud her bravery to go in for this sharp Najdorf.

15:50 Van Foreest-Adhiban gets out of hand again 

Strange things are starting to happen in the game Van Foreest-Adhiban. The Indian put his knight on the rim, and the young Dutchman could on move 16 have taken twice on h6 and covered the c4-pawn by 18.Nd2. Instead Van Foreest also put his knight on the rim: 16.Nh4!?, when after Black's reply 16...Qh5 White cannot well take on h6, and c4 is hanging. The result is now that Van Foreest has lost a healthy pawn, just like yesterday.

16:46 Complications in Wei Yi-Ivanchuk 

Wei Yi and Ivanchuk are engaged in a sharp struggle. The provocative pawn capture 19...Qxb2 was predicted by our commentator of today, Robert Ris, who called it 'just a move Ivanchuk would play'. Tournament director Loek van Wely joined the analysis, and said after the pointed reply 20.Bxb5, 'Maybe this is a good time to leave you alone with your audience.' However Black remained alive with active play. Even stronger, Loek van Wely commented: 'It's hard to imagine this can be anything for White'.

16:54 Suicidal action by Thomas Beerdsen? 

Thomas Beerdsen just started a furious attack with the rook sacrifice 24.Nf5 against Jakob Pajeken. His assault on the black king with knight and queen looks dangerous, but unfortunately there is no engine to be found that thinks it's anything. It just looks losing for White! After 27...Rf5 Black can always give that rook for the annoying knight.

17:33 Wei Yi and Ivanchuk again balancing on the edge 

The second game between the Chinese and the Ukraine top GMs also ended peacefully with a perpetual. Wei Yi had played this line four years ago versus Alexei Shirov: "Then I castled long instead of short. Maybe after Black played 12...d5 I had some chances." The sharp 17.Nf5 didn't quite work out; the computer suggests trying something on the queenside with 17.a4 or even 17.Qb4.

"18...g6 was a good move", said Wei Yi. "After that it was probably a draw. Maybe Black even had a little something after taking on b2, but it was not enough to win." Ivanchuk agreed about the last bit: "I'm not sure if I had anything there."

17:52 Xu, Ernst, Pruijssers, Kollars 

A few not unexpected decisions at the top of the Open group. Xu Xiangyu pressed against Stefan Colijn and won a queen, after which the conversion didn't take very long. Roeland Pruijssers replied to a furious attack by Joost Wempe with a vicious counter, and Sipke Ernst defeated a young player from the same province of Frisia with a petit combinaison:

Here Ernst introduces the decisive trick: 28...Qg5 29.Nxd6 29.Tf1 was necessary, to prevent the following onslaught. 29...f5 30.Nf2 Nhf4 31.exf4 Nxf4 With attack on g2 and e2/c1. After 32.Qxf5+ Qxf5 33.Nxf5 Ne2+ Ernst hauled in the loot.

The young German talent Dmitrij Kollars won a quite technical game today, while his coach, Jonathan Carlstedt, went down against Carsten Stanetzek.

18:06 Lara Schulze comments 

We received some comments by Lara Schulze on her combinative win against the young Dutch girl Robin Duson.



'This was a trap', Schulze said. 'Black cannot take this pawn.' She should have played the thematic 14...Nc4.


A great counter. If Black now takes the queen White gets

a very favourable endgame with the bishop pair: 15...Nxd2 16.Nxe7+ Kf7 17.Nxc8 Raxc8 18.Rxd2. But this is what Robin should have tried, since now she gets crushed on the kingside.

15...exd5 16.Qxd5+ Kh8 17.hxg6 Nf6


Of course. Mate is inevitable.

18...Nxh7 19.Qh5 Bxb2+ 20.Kxb2 Rf7 21.gxf7 Qe6 22.Bxf3 Qf6+ 23.Bd4 e5 24. Rh1 1-0

The young German women's champion was glad she bounced back after losing against Casper Schoppen yesterday. 'But I haven't set any goals for this tournament. If you want to end on 5 or 6 points you're thinking "Oh, now I need three more points" all the time, and not focussing on the game at hand. Better take it one day at a time.'

18:28 Big fight on board 1 

Ivo Maris is putting up a big fight against Elo favourite Davorin Kuljasevic on board 1. Black had pressure on the c4-pawn, but White always had something in return. In the end the beleaguered pawn fell, but now White has gained the a4-pawn for it. A very slight edge for Black... will Maris be able to hold?

18:34 Second Foreest pawn goes 

Jorden van Foreest has defended tenaciously, but now a knight ending is reached in which the a5-pawn also goes. How can the young Dutchman save himself from this?

Worries for the young Dutchman...

18:55 Machteld! 

Machteld van Foreest just scored her first win in a big open. In a difficult position she cleverly started a permanent attack on the bishop of Axel Fehr, whereupon the latter sacked the bishop and ended up in a totally lost endgame.

It turned out that Machteld even had more ambitious plans... "If he had gone back with the bishop to c6 I would have gone after his rook and pushed my h-pawn", she said. Her opponent Axel Fehr very graciously congratulated the 10-year-old and said 'Gut gespielt.'

19:11 Van Foreest resigns 

The knight ending was hopeless, and Jorden van Foreest has resigned after some tough defending.

Once more about the crucial moment in the game:

The reason why Adhiban hadn't played 16.Bxh6 was that he thought Black had 16...Nb3. But right after the players were asked about this, Van Foreest cried: 'Ah, now I do have 17.Nh4, and now I have exactly what I wanted!' Both players had missed this. 17...Qe6 for instance is no use in view of 18.Qg5. So Black has to trade queens and White has a nice advantage.


19:15 Honourable draw for Maris 

Ivo Maris has held GM Davorin Kuljasevic to a draw on the top board. 'It was very tough', the Dutchman said. 'I was a little worse all the time, I couldn't do much and had to wait. But fortunately there was no way through for him. Maybe early on, when he traded the h-pawns (after move 29, PB), he should have played ...g7-g6 and ...f7-f5 instead, to create a second front. Then e4 becomes weak too. As it went, I could fool around a little on the edge of the board, and keep him busy."