Yu Yangyi Cruising Through Capablanca Memorial -- Midway Report

Yu Yangyi Cruising Through Capablanca Memorial -- Midway Report

While most of the chess world's attention is firmly fixed on the ongoing action in Norway, another elite tournament is currently taking place in Havana, Cuba: The 50th Capablanca Memorial, a six-player double round robin with an average rating of 2715 (!).

Chinese superstar GM Yu Yangyi has been unstoppable and is leading with 4.5/5 at the half-way mark. Trailing him with 2.5/5 are GMs Pavel Eljanov (UKR), Dmitry Andreikin (RUS), and Lenier Dominguez Perez (CUB). Rounding out the field is GM Lazaro Bruzon Batista (CUB) with 2/5, and GM Ian Nepomniachtchi (RUS) with just 1/5.

So far Yu has only been in trouble once in the event — after a nice queen sacrifice by Nepomniachtchi — but luck was on his side, as he landed a fierce counterattack and caught White's king in the center of the board:

One of Yu's cleaner wins of the event was his slow middlegame grind against Dominguez:

In the final position, White resigned as he has no answer to the threat of 39...Be8!, trapping his queen.

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Accurate and ruthless, Yu shows no signs of slowing down. Photo: Fernando Medina


As White, Yu has faced the Berlin Defense in all three games, though only Eljanov was able to survive:

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Round 3: Nepomniachtchi - Dominguez 0-1 Photo: Fernando Medina

The action continues with Round 6 on Sunday, June 21st, as the players switch colors and face off against each other once more. Look for a full recap after the event is concluded here on Chess.com.

2015 Capablanca Memorial | Round 5 Standings

# Name Rtg Perf 1 2 3 4 5 6 Pts SB
1 Yu,Yangyi 2715 3097 phpfCo1l0.png ½ 1 1 1 1 4.5/5
2 Eljanov,Pavel 2718 2716 ½ phpfCo1l0.png ½ ½ 0 1 2.5/5 5.75
3 Andreikin,Dmitry 2718 2716 0 ½ phpfCo1l0.png ½ 1 ½ 2.5/5 5.00
4 Dominguez Perez,Leinier 2746 2710 0 ½ ½ phpfCo1l0.png ½ 1 2.5/5 4.50
5 Bruzon Batista,Lazaro 2677 2653 0 1 0 ½ phpfCo1l0.png ½ 2.0/5
6 Nepomniachtchi,Ian 2720 2474 0 0 ½ 0 ½ phpfCo1l0.png 1.0/5
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