Tata Steel part 1
The 76th Tata Steel Chess Tournament is underway and so far I think the participants in the Masters and Challengers have been treating the audience greatly with attractive attacking chess. As a Dutch chess fanatic I have the privilege following the tournament live in Wijk aan Zee both as a spectator as well as a commentator. In the second round I had the pleasure to have been invited joining GM Yasser Seirawan in the live commentary show, so for those who have missed it, you can still watch that session here:
It goes without saying I'm honored to have been joining such a great commentator and nice person and even this time when I was sitting next to Yasser I felt I got a free lesson myself!
The next day I joined the live commentary again with one of my best friends around in scene, Dutch GM Erwin l'Ami. We know each other very well for the greater part of our life and during the show I felt at some point we went back in time, reliving our early teenagers years when we had some much fun in our endless blitz sessions. Evidently we were lucky to have been commentating on one of the most exciting rounds so far.
In particular our attention was attracted by the game between our two fellow countrymen Loek van Wely and Anish Giri. Below I'd like to give you the critical moment of the game!
So for Van Wely it's a pity that in the line 23.Bxe6 fxe6 24.f7 Kh8 25.Ng5 Qd5 he has the amazing resource 26.h4! when there isn't anything to do against the threat Qg6. Although the engines are immediately showing this decisive variation, for a human it's pretty difficult to find it over the board, as well as in the commentary room as both Erwin and I failed to spot this strike either!
Tomorrow I will be in Wijk aan Zee doing the live commentary for the kids and after for the more experienced players. I'm really looking forward to it and hopefully I'll be joining the live stream commentary on one of the next days as well.
Photo: Alina l'Ami: Behind the scenes. I'm doing commentary with Erwin and Peter Doggers taking care of the technical issues.