Lion taming

Lion taming

Feb 2, 2018, 1:12 PM |

Round 1 : 2,5-1,5

This round, like all the other rounds before it for the Migraines was played out on the top 3 boards. Maze and Gozzoli won and Bacrot drew with black. But it wasn't as easy as it sounds. Gozzoli's win was the only smooth one. He gained a pawn then created a passed pawn and destroyed his opponent. Bacrot was in a worse position in the endgame against an FM and Maze was looking for a draw where he had a piece for two pawns when his GM opponent blundered the game right back into his hands in an attempt to avoid repetition. We all like a smooth game (except Magnus), Gozzoli's game was smooth(ish) :

Round 2 : 2,5-1,5

This was the round of madness. Bacrot did what he always does. He did an amazing sacrifice on f7 and then got through a load of complications to get to a winning position. But Maze was then slowly squeezed in a rook ending where he was down a pawn. Gozzoli got a win by forfeit against his GM opponent. Migraine history was made when Maurizzi got his first half point on board 4 and did it with style. He held out the Lion's board 2 (who was a GM) with black (!) in a game that most certainly wasn't bland.

Round 3 : 1,5-2,5

The Lions fought back in round 3, Maze was destroyed by the GM who forfeited the earlier round and Maurizzi blundered away his game. Gozzoli was then held out by an FM in a quite boring game. But the Migraines kept the lead coming into the final round thanks to Bacrot. His opponent played h4 like Magnus but played it in a different and flawed manner. Bacrot won the game smoothly. The Lions won this round thanks to their win against Maze :

Round 4: 2,5-1,5

It was too late for the Lions and the Migraines won this round the way they always do. They dominated the top 3 boards. Gozzoli won a miniature that can only be described as mad, 9 moves were blunders, inaccuracies and mistakes out of the first 18 moves that they played. Maze's game was in stark contrast to Gozzoli's, where he edged out a rook ending. Bacrot went for a draw at move 30 in an uneventful game.


In this game, our board 4 finally got half a point but on the other hand the top 3 boards performance showed some warning signs. Maze was dominated in a few games and there were a bunch of disappointing draws. It was still a great result for the Migraines and increases our hopes for our board 4.