Jobava keeps the top position

Today GM Baadur Jobava drew vs GM Dronavalli Harika, but yesterday’s clash versus GM Pavel Eljanov was very intense. Although good friends since childhood, due to Jobava living in Eljanov’s hometown Kharkov for a number of years, the board was by no means showing any sign of this friendship…

In move 29 Eljanov played Re4:

JobavaEljanov1

Jobava followed up by Rc7 which Eljanov could have responded with Re6! with a clear advantage.

JobavaEljanov2

Black can obviously not take the rook due to an immediate mate threat in two moves on g6/g7. After this could follow: 30… Qh2 (or Qc5)  31. Rxg6 Qxg1  32. Qxg1 fxg6  33. Qb6 Rd7 with a winning position for white with queen vs two rooks and two pawns up.

When asking GM Eljanov why he did not play this line, he responded: “I did consider Re6 of course, but I simply thought 30. f4 was an easier win”, but his calculation turned out to be wrong because of Rc5, equalizing the position…

After only one round to go, Jobava is in the lead with 2.5/4 together with Grandelius. Then follows Eljanov and Blomqvist on 2 points, and on 1.5 points we find Short and Harika.

The last round tomorrow starts at 12.00 CEST at Hipp Theatre, Spegelsalen on the top floor, Kalendegatan in Malmö, just a 100 metres walk from the central station.