Tang Clinches 1st Win In Day 4 Of U.S. Championship Online Qualifier
Andrew Tang defends with two seconds on his clock. Photo (archive): Maria Emelianova/Chess.com.

Tang Clinches 1st Win In Day 4 Of U.S. Championship Online Qualifier

PromoteToBishop
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17 | Chess Event Coverage

The fourth round of the U.S. Championship Online Qualifier kept viewers at the edge of their seats, as GMs Daniel Naroditsky and Andrew Tang emerged victorious in their action-packed games against GMs Timur Gareyev and Elshan Moradiabadi.

IM Christopher Yoo and GMs Aleksandr LendermanRobert Hess, and Dariusz Swiercz all secured a draw for themselves after playing out their endgames.

How to watch?
Every round will be streamed live at Chess.com/tv starting at 2 p.m. Pacific time, December 11-18. The games can also be found here as part of our live games platform.


The live broadcast of the fourth round.

Tang vs. Moradiabadi (1-0)

Tang was able to obtain his first win of the event in this roller-coaster of a game. 

Black opted for a double fianchetto setup against Tang's London System, and Tang started gaining space on the queenside. However, Black's pieces started swarming around the white king; Moradiabadi eventually pulled the trigger on the attack with 27... Nxg4!, sacrificing his knight. The position was theoretically still equal, but practically it was much harder to play for Tang, who ended up making a devastating mistake on move 37. 

At this stage, Tang was in serious time trouble and Moradiabadi's time was also getting quite low. Forced to blitz out their moves, the players played a real nail-biter from there on out. Amid the chaos, Moradiabadi missed the crushing 38...g3, and Tang was able to slowly untangle. 

After the dust settled, Tang was up the exchange in a winning endgame, and Moradiabadi resigned shortly thereafter.

Naroditsky vs. Gareyev (1-0)

Naroditsky won another brilliant game by checkmate, this time sacrificing two rooks to do so.

The game featured a Bishop's Opening, and Naroditsky, who joined the stream after the game, identified move 12 as a critical moment in the game. He stated that instead of playing in a "tame" manner, he decided at that moment to "risk it for the biscuit with f4." After that move, the game got highly tactical, and Gareyev went for a line where he sacrificed a pawn to win the exchange. White's compensation for being down the exchange was having active pieces in the center with which he could look to attack the black king. 

Naroditsky was able to utilize this advantage and went on to find a beautiful eight move sequence in which he sacrificed another rook and a knight to deliver checkmate, a sequence that Gareyev allowed him to play on the board.

daniel-naroditsky
Daniel Naroditsky Sacrifices Both Rooks For Checkmate. Photo: Maria Emelianova/Chess.com

Hess vs. Yoo (0.5-0.5)

Hess put pressure on the young tournament leader in this game, but ended up settling for a draw.

"Christopher seemed to misplay the opening and I obtained a nice advantage," Hess remarked after the game. Indeed, the player and well-known commentator came out of the opening quite strong and, contrary to his previous games, was able to avoid being significantly down on time.

However, even though he had calculated the variation 17.Rfd1 Qg5 18.Bxf3 Rc8 19.Qa5 and noticed he was winning a pawn, Hess still played the inaccurate 18.Qxg7 instead. As he told Chess.com, only after doing so did he realize that he had previously decided to not play this line precisely because of [Yoo's] 19...Rc4!.

"After that," Hess commented, "[Yoo] defended extremely accurately." The young IM was, in fact, down a pawn in the subsequent opposite-colored bishop endgame and managed to simplify into a draw.

Swiercz vs. Lenderman (0.5-0.5)

The two GMs played out a 100+ move game that resulted in a draw, as Swiercz was not able to penetrate Lenderman's defense. 

The game began with an English Opening but quickly transposed into an Accelerated Dragon with a Maroczy Bind bind formation. In the queenless middlegame that followed, Swiercz seemed to generate a nice advantage for himself with his outside passed pawn on the a-file. 

Lenderman managed to trade that pawn off though, which also meant that he was able to neutralize White's advantage for the most part. Although it still looked better for White, the resulting position was actually equal, provided Black played perfectly. Lenderman did just that, as we saw the players play the position out until Lenderman found a neat way to conclude the game as a draw: sacrificing his rook with 101...Rg5+ to force a stalemate.

Standings

# Fed Name Username Rtg* Perf 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Pts SB
1 Christopher Yoo @ChristopherYoo 2803 2890 1 ½ 1 ½ 3.0/4
2 Aleksander Lenderman @AlexanderL 2793 2834 ½ ½ 1 ½ 2.5/4 3.75
3 Daniel Naroditsky @DanielNaroditsky 2626 2733 0 1 ½ 1 2.5/4 3.75
4 Elshan Moradiabadi @Elshan1985 2810 2690 ½ ½ 0 1 2.0/4 3.25
5 Timur Gareyev @TimurGareyev 2452 2736 0 ½ 1 ½ 2.0/4 3.25
6 Dariusz Swiercz @daro94 2659 2580 ½ ½ ½ 0 1.5/4 4
7 Andrew Tang @penguingm1 2849 2626 0 0 1 ½ 1.5/4 3
8 Robert Hess @GMHess 2664 2568 ½ ½ 0 0 1.0/4

*Chess.com ratings

The U.S. Championship Online Qualifier is an eight-player round robin played Dec. 11-18 on Chess.com, with a rest day on Dec. 15. The time control is 90 minutes for the whole game with a 30-second increment from move one. The total prize fund is $10,000. The winner will secure a spot in the 2021 U.S. Chess Championship. 

Watch the fifth round live at Chess.com/tv. Play will begin at 2 p.m. Pacific time on Wednesday, December 16.


Earlier reports:

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