Day 3 at TATA Steel chess - Drew my final game and got first place!

Day 3 at TATA Steel chess - Drew my final game and got first place!



Today was day three at TATA steel chess for us amateurs and the second day for the challengers and masters. I closed this day off with a draw, which put me on 2.5/3, clinching the group victory!

Day one at TATA can be found here
Day two at TATA can be found here

Let's get right into the game! My opponent for this match was Feike Liefrink (1978) who played an extremely solid game on his side. Without any further ado, let's get right into it. I'll post some key moments of the game, just as I did in the last blogs!

In the opening I tried to go for a very sharp line with my last move b6. I was hoping that white would go for e5 where fireworks would come off the board, can you spot the best moves?

Unfortunately my opponent didn't go for this line and continued with the move Re1. A few moves later we reached this position:

Arguably black is a bit better here. Blacks threat is to make the move Qd4 which attack multiple pieces and keeps the pressure in the center. However, the position is very equal and it's hard to create any kind of imbalance. That doesn't mean I'll keep trying it though!

This is probably the move where I sealed the draw. After whites last move Qc4, I traded queens which lead to a very drawish endgame, unlucky!

At the end I had one final trick up my sleeve that could potentially lead to a victory, can you find my move?

And that was the game! With this draw I was crowned group winner with 2.5/3 and a TPR of 2206 (full results and standing can be found here:

As usual, the full game can be reviewed here:

To summarize it, it was a very eventful day where I learned two very important things:

Lesson #1 - Never call Lawrence Trent while he's doing commentary:

Lesson #2 - Have a great dinner afterwards to celebrate your victory!