Cover Pic: Chess Dudes out on an evening cruise!
Timur and Wei Ming wheeled out the highly theoretical French Winawer Poisoned pawn variation which we saw Xiangyi attempt against Batchuluun one round ago. However, it was not to be a slashfest as Timur opted for a line which gave Black the choice of repeating moves or to go into a slightly worse queenless middlegame. With a +2 score, Wei Ming was not about to gamble against the top seed and promptly repeated moves to move to 3/4 with Timur.
Gong Qianyun overpressed with 22 f4 against Irine Sukandar, weakening her own e-pawn chronically and the Indonesia double Asian Women’s champ found an exquisite knight sortie to douse any attacking chances that Qianyun had hoped to generate.
Liu Xiangyi’s choice of a passive waiting game against Munkhgal’s Nimzo Indian was further compounded when he lashed out at an inappropriate time and Mungkhgal broke through the centre and the Singaporean could no longer provide resistance.
Qing Aun too struggled after the opening. I thought the choice of the 4.c3 and 5.d4 Giuoco Piano wasn’t quite appropriate as it does not test his GM opponent much. However, Batchuluun’s subsequent technique was really impressive!
Jingyao took advantage of a tentatively played Slav by Nguyen Anh Dung to attack the latter’s kingside with great verve and he just couldn’t put a foot wrong. An awesome display of relentless attacking chess.