Vallejo leads in Reggio Emilia

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Vallejo leads in Reggio EmiliaFrancisco "Paco" Vallejo Pons is in sole lead at the 53rd Torneo di Capodanno in Reggio Emilia. The Spanish GM scored 2.5/3. The tournament also sees big names like Vassily Ivanchuk, Vugar Gashimov, Nigel Short, Fabiano Caruana and... Alexander Morozevich.

General info

The 53rd Torneo di Capodanno takes place December 28 - January 6 in Reggio Emilia, Italy. It's a 10-player, single round-robin with Vallejo Pons, Short, Ivanchuk, Caruana, Onischuk, Movsesian, Navara, Godena, Gashimov, and Morozevich playing. Rounds start at 15:00 CET every day, except for January 6th when it starts at 12:00 CET.




Rounds 1-3

It has been quite a while since Alexander Morozevich played a tournament, and in fact his participation in Reggio Emilia wasn't a 100% sure until after the event had begun. Apparently the Russian GM had encountered some travel issues - he spent two full days to get to the northern-Italian town, and didn't manage to arrive in time for the first round! His game against David Navara was postponed, and so the two will only meet each other in the new year.

Even without this game the first round saw a lot of exciting chess with for example an interesting, positional draw between Caruana and Ivanchuk and an Evans Gambit in Vallejo-Godena. The game of the round, however, was the one between Short and Gashimov. The Azeri grandmaster sacrificed a piece for a dangerous attack, then probably played for a win a bit too long and so Short, with a wandering king, could claim the full point. An excellent start for the Englishman, who had such a dreadful tournament in London earlier this month.

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WGM Martha Fierro talks with Fabiano Caruana and Vasily Ivanchuk after the first round



A fair share of luck was on Nigel Short's side also the day after, when he managed to beat Alexander Morozevich from a lost position. Around move 23 Black is on top if he goes Ra1 and Qc5, or the other way around, and 27...Rf5 and 29...Nf4+ both look strong too. In the game Short manoeuvred his king through a minefield. In the same round Navara won a pretty, positional Sveshnikov against Caruana.

It had to go wrong at some point, and indeed the next day Short lost his first game, against Caruana - a reprise from the tense game that decided the Corus B tournament in 2009. Vallejo grabbed the lead with a win against Navara, who deserves credit for playing for a win with the black pieces. The Czech GM avoided a move repetition in the opening, underestimating an exchange sacrifice by the Spaniard.

Reggio Emilia 2010 | Round 3 standings
Reggio Emilia 2010 | Round 3 standings


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