PogChamps 2: tfblade, dogdog Win, Brackets Set
dogdog defeated QTCinderella in their armageddon game and moves on to the championship bracket.

PogChamps 2: tfblade, dogdog Win, Brackets Set

| 11 | Chess Event Coverage

The group stage of PogChamps ended on Monday with group C in the spotlight. This group was wide open, with three of the four players able to move on to the championship bracket. Concurrent viewership peaked at over 65,000, and the action was commentated by GM Hikaru Nakamura, IM Levy Rozman, and Ludwig.

dogdog defeated QTCinderella in an armageddon game to take second place in group C, while tfblade beat TSM_Zexrow for the first place position in the group. dogdog and tfblade both advance to the championship bracket. Group C was the final puzzle piece needed to complete the brackets, which now has all of the spots locked in.

PogChamps 2
PogChamps 2 brackets are set.

    Make sure to tune into's daily coverage of the 2020 PogChamps at 12:45 p.m. Pacific (21:45 p.m. Central Europe) on The complete show archives are available on and

    dogdog Defeats QTCinderella In Armageddon

    dogdog was the overwhelming favorite heading into the match, with a 600-rating point advantage, and was coming off of an impressive victory over tfblade in round 2. He needed the win versus QTCinderella to move on to the championship bracket, but it would not be an easy task.

    In game one, dogdog played a Trompowsky opening and the game got tense quickly with opposite-side castling. QT's attack came first, and she had some excellent chances against dogdog's king. She won a pawn and had a very promising position both on the board and on the clock, as she was ahead over three minutes at one point.

    With under 20 seconds on the clock, dogdog tried a direct mate threat which was missed by QT and it was all over.

    QT played a Stonewall attack in game two, and dogdog replied with a King's Indian Defense setup. dogdog again found himself in bad time trouble and lost the thread of the game. QT was up two exchanges and had an extra four minutes on the clock; she then showed great skill while she promoted a queen. dogdog flagged in a hopeless position, and QT forced an armageddon game.

    In the final game, QT chose the White pieces and lost a pawn in the opening. Quickly after losing the pawn, she lost her queen and dogdog started rolling. dogdog kept picking up material, but both players were below 30 seconds with no increment. In an exciting finish, QT flagged, and the match was over.

    In the post-match interview, QT made it very clear that she was upset... upset about losing, but also about her Cheetos:

    With this win, dogdog secured a spot in the championship bracket. He will face the group A winner, WaggamamaTV, in the quarterfinals of the championship bracket. QTCinderella will face ConnorEatsPants in the consolation bracket.

    tfblade Beats TSM_Zexrow

    The second match of the day had TSM_Zexrow face off against tfblade for a spot in the championship bracket.

    In game one, Zexrow played the King's Indian Attack. tfblade started central play early while Zexrow expanded on the queenside. The play was balanced until Zexrow hung his knight, and tfblade took control. tfblade traded down to a minor piece endgame where he was just up a knight.

    When tfblade was putting the finishing touches on game one, the unthinkable happened:

    Game one ended in a surprising stalemate, and it all came down to game two.

    Zexrow fianchettoed on the queenside (instead of his normal play of performing the kingside fianchetto), and tfblade built a pleasant position. Zexrow was staring at doubled and isolated queen's pawns but continued playing solid moves and eventually doubled tfblade's queen's pawns as well. It isn't often that you see four isolated pawns on a single file:

    pogchamps 2
    It is rare to see four isolated pawns on the same file.

    The game remained balanced for a long time, and the position transitioned to an even endgame. tfblade made some progress with his active king, and then Zexrow missed a fork that lost a full rook. tfblade was in full control, and Zexrow resigned.

    With this win, tfblade moves forward to the championship bracket and will face Hafthorjulius in the quarterfinals. Despite winning two matches and losing only one, TSM_Zexrow will be playing in the consolation bracket where he should be considered one of the favorites to win. He will face AustinShow in the consolation quarterfinals.

    Group C Final Standings

    Pogchamps 2

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