Nakamura wins in Gibraltar after playoff

0 | Chess Event Coverage
Nakamura has won the GibTelecom Masters in Gibraltar by beating Bu Xiangzhi in the rapid playoff 2-0. The American, who is known as a superb blitz player, clinched the first prize of 12,000 pounds. Video added

In Gibraltar it's all done a bit differently. The organizers don't like the sharing of prize money and prefer a good fight, with some bloodshed, sweat and tears. That's why this tournament is decided by a rapid playoff when several players finish shared first. But how do they manage, all this on one day, including the prize giving ceremony, the experienced tournament organiser wonders.

Well, like this. All players who, after the penultimate round, still have a chance for first prize, have to start their games at 10:00 AM instead of 15:00 PM, when the rest of the tournament plays its last round. And so the games Bu Xiangzhi-Ni Hua, Nakamura-Efimenko and Gopal-Bologan were played very early today, in fact during the last round of the second Challengers Tournament. The two Chinese players drew each other in just 22 minutes and Gopal-Bologan saw the same result (where White probably missed a win somewhere). Nakamura beat Efimenko (his fifth victory in a row after his defeat against Australia's newest GM Zong-Yuan Zhao) and so it was Bu and Nakamura who played their rapid playoff (ten minutes plus ten seconds increment) at 15:00 for a first prize of 12 thousand pounds.

Nakamura won the first game convincingly, but got into big trouble in the second. Bu won his opponent's queen but the American managed to create a fortress with his rook, knight and pawns. The Chinese tried to do the impossible and eventually let his king be mated at the middle of the board.


Here's some footage of the playoff and interviews with both Nakamura and Bu, created by the indefatigable Zeljka Malobabic:


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