Dallas Destiny Big Winners As Giri Makes PRO Debut
The Dallas Destiny scored a league-high 20 points in week seven.

Dallas Destiny Big Winners As Giri Makes PRO Debut

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The Dallas Destiny scored a league-high 20 points in PRO Chess League Battles Royale as several teams such as the Miami Champions made big strides forward in the league standings with strong performances. Other favorites such as the Montreal Chessbrahs faltered and lost ground in the increasingly tense playoff race.

The biggest news on the individual player front was Anish Giri entering the fray for the Montreal Chessbrahs. Giri had spent two seasons on the Chessbrahs' roster without seeing action. This week he finally dove in and made a big splash on the board and on Twitter.

For crosstables and games from all matches, visit our weekly results page.

Cast your vote in the game and MVP of the week polls.

Battle Royale #5: Amsterdam Mosquitoes Sting Opposition

The Amsterdam Mosquitoes have been solid performers throughout the 2019 season, but few would have picked them to win a Battle Royale five amidst several more highly-performing teams. An excellent 5.5/7 and at least a +2 on all boards was enough for them to rack up 19 points and clear first place. Here is one of Loek Van Wely's wins in the event.

Former FIDE world champion Ruslan Ponomariov also made his debut for the Barcelona Raptors in the event and while his result was not as good as he hoped, he played many interesting games.

Note: The Moscow Phoenix were absent from their match, believing it to be on Thursday, and forfeited all games.

Battle Royale #6: Arch Bishops Hard-Fought Victors

Battle Royale six was unbelievably stacked with talent. Stars like Fabiano Caruana, Ding Liren, Hikaru Nakamura, and Le Quang Liem battled on board one while Wesley So and Wang Yue contested board two! Given such strong lineups, it is perhaps not surprising that a relatively meager 16.5 points was enough for the Saint Louis Arch Bishops to take first.

Here is one of Fabiano Caruana's wins. Do you think it was a beautiful game or a simple blunder of the f7-pawn?

Amid all the 2700+ talent, the surprise high-scorer on board one was Daniel Naroditsky who notched 5.5/7 points!

Battle Royale #7: Dallas Destiny Average +3

The Dallas Destiny were the big winners in Battle Royale seven as they scored 20 points, an average of 5/7 per board. Jeffery Xiong found a nice tactic to claim a point early.

The Destiny's highest individual score came from Chris Toolin who scored 5.5/7, emerging the winner in some crazy time scrambles like the following.

While the Dallas Destiny stole the points, the Montreal Chessbrahs stole the show as Anish Giri made his debut. For two seasons, he has been on their roster but never played, finally he got off the pine and scored 5.5/7 on board one. This was great for IM Anna Rudolf who successfully guessed his final score and won a box of chocolates in a friendly wager against her co-commentator Robert Hess.

Giri's first game featured two beautiful unexpected moves and earned him a quick win.

Later Giri sprang an amusing trap against Baadur Jobava.

But then he fell for an even more devilish trap himself!

A surprising weak point for the Chessbrahs was Eric Hansen who had recently achieved a blitz rating high on As he confessed, he made the grave sin of overpressing in several positions.

Battle Royale #8: Miami Champions Surprise Victors

The Miami Champions occupied the basement in their division, but with 17.5 points, they won Battle Royale eight and lifted themselves from their doldrums. Both Eljanov and Tianqi Wang scored well, but it was Iturrizaga's monster 6/7 that lifted them over their competitors.

John Batholomew earned many plaudits for his 6.5/7 score on board four, a score he shared with Flavio Perez. They each only dropped one half-point in the game they drew against each other.

A standout game from the division was Movsesian's smothering assault against GM Andrew Tang.

Commentary for this week of #prochess was provided by Hess, Alexandra Botez, Rudolf, David Pruess and Jenn Shahade. All shows and archives are available at

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NM Sam Copeland

I'm the VP of Chess and Community for I earned the National Master title in 2012, and in 2014, I returned to my home state of South Carolina to start Strategery: Chess and Games. In late 2014, I began working for and haven't looked back since.

You can find my personal content on Twitch , Twitter , and YouTube where I further indulge my love of chess.

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