Russia and USA lead at World Team Championship

| 0 | Chess Event Coverage
World Team ChRussia and the USA are sharing the lead at the World Team Championship. After six rounds both teams are on ten match points. Azerbaijan, Armenia, Israel and India follow with seven match points, with three rounds to go. Games rounds 5-6 with notes.

The 7th World Team Championship takes place at the Merinos Congress Centre in Bursa, Turkey from January 3rd till 14th, 2010. It's a 9-round round-robin with 10 teams of 6 players: 4 players + 2 reserves, and one coach/captain. The time control is 90 minutes for 40 moves +30 minutes to end the game, with 30 seconds increment from the start. At the tournament the zero-tolerance rule is in effect, and draw offers are not allowed before move 30. Teams are Russia, Brazil, China India, Egypt (continental champions), Armenia, Israel, USA (Olympiad qualifiers), Turkey, Azerbaijan, and Greece (organizing country and two invited federations).

Rounds 5-6

After the first four rounds no less than five teams were on six match points, and everything was possible. Two rounds later it looks like the real fight for the title will be between Russia and USA. Azerbaijan recovered with an easy win against Turkey in round 5, but yesterday the dropped another match points against Israel. The Armenians are not in top shape either, and especially Levon Aronian. In the fifth round, against Sasikiran, he blew a textbook rook ending that should have been a draw and yesterday he missed a trivial win on his very last move, allowing an immediate drawing answer by Kotronias.

Sasikiran-Aronian World Team Ch 53...Kd5! (threatening 54...Rg8+ 55.Kf6 Kd4, the point in such positions) 54.g4 Rg8+ 55.Kf4 Rf8+! 5.Kg3 Rg8! and it's draw, as long as the black king keeps using the d6 and d5 squares. With the pawn on the third rank, White can only win if the black king is cut off at a distance of three files. See the game viewer.

Aronian-Kotronias World Team Ch Here 49.Nd5?? Qd6! was an instant draw, where 49.Ne2 simply wins a piece and 49.Qc4+! mates the Black king - see the game viewer.

The best game of the fifth round was Gelfand-Nakamura; a spectacular 9.Nd2 King's Indian with the classical scenario of sharp attacks on both wings where every tempo counted. It included the typical Nxg2 sacrifice, a move "Black can't do without in such positions", as I think Kasparov once wrote. It was a rare example of unsuccessful opening preparation by the Israeli, who naturally knew Nakamura's game against Beliavsky played August last year in Amsterdam.

However, did Gelfand also see the game Roussel Roozmon-Charbonneau, Montreal 2008? We should assume that he did, but then he should have examined the Ng6-h4xg2 manoeuvre some more before the game. Nakamura certainly knew the Charbonneau game, since he was staying with the Charbonneau family during the Montreal 2008 tournament (as mishanp noted at the Daily Dirt)!

Gelfand's 24.dxc7 must be a mistake (very interesting complications arise after 24.Kxg2 Rg7) after which Nakamura started a series of devastating blows all with just one idea: a mate with either pawn or bishop on g2.

Gelfand-Nakamura World Team Ch 28...Qd3! and Black won.

Update 17:42: Nakamura's brief comments to the game have now been posted

In round six Greece did it again: after beating Russia earlier in the tournament they also defeated Armenia. We already saw that Aronian could have won, but this wouldn't have helped his team because both Akopian and Petrosian lost, to Papaioannou and Halkias respectively. Russia and the USA scored good wins over Brazil and India and have a three-point lead with three rounds to go.

World Team Ch 2010 | Results round 5

World Team Ch 2010 | Results round 6

World Team Ch 2010 | Round 6 standings

Games rounds 5-6

Game viewer by ChessTempo


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