World Youth Chess Championship 2018

Round 11

One last chance to make an impression in the most significant youth chess tournament in the world. Every member of the England team will want to go out with a bang but so will their opponents. Let’s see what happens.

Callum Brewer was playing with the white pieces against a very strong FM from Argentina. The Argentinian player has had a series of strong results in the last 4 rounds. The opening went generally well for Callum but the transition to the middle game was misplayed and allowed the Argentine to take the advantage. Black never relinquished the advantage and though Callum did what he could to create counterplay the game eventually transitioned into a lost rook and pawn endgame. Callum finishes on 5/11

Gautam Jain also with white was playing a plus 2000 rated player from Greece. The Greek player though had not put together the best run of results. This was a well-played game by Gautam and he had the winning chances in this one. This one became blocked and Marilyn Munroe could have drawn this one quite probably whilst buffing her impeccable nails. Gautam finishes on 4/11

FM Koby Kalavannan with white was playing another FM from Peru. The Peruvian’s results would have warned Koby that he is dangerous when given the opportunity. Koby got himself into a bad position in a tense and complex middlegame and as it transitioned into an endgame it became very difficult to hold. The pressure eventually told as Koby blundered. Koby finishes the tournament on 6/11

Max French also had white against a lower rated player from Russia. Though the Russian player started the tournament poorly. He has put a good run of results together and this was going to be a challenge for Max. The game became messy and in a tense position Max was afraid of his opponent sacking a piece, but it turns out he was seeing ghosts. His fear caused him to move somewhere which lost immediately. Max finishes on 4/11

Leif Hafstad had the black pieces against a strong 2104 AIM from Hungary. This player had underformed in the tournament. This was a close contest with a rook and 3 vs a rook and 3. The position was drawn but Leif overstretched, and this caused him to lose the game. Leif finishes on 4/11

Ilya Miyura had the white pieces against a Norwegian player who’s rating was approaching 2200. Ilya played A Catalan and his opponent sacked the exchange which is apparently a common theme in this opening. If at that point black can manoeuvre his pieces to get his pawns moving on the queenside, he gets a winning game and so it proved. Ilya finishes on 5/11

Aditya Munshi had white against a lower rated Swedish player. Aditya played a really nice game here. He eventually took on h6 though he had an earlier opportunity to do so. Excellent preparation and skill by Aditya. Aditya finishes on 6/11

(158) Munshi, Aditya (2133) – Muntean, Victor (1876) [C55]

Christopher Tombolis also had white against a lower rated Slovakian player. Christopher got a Benoni in this one. His opponents Knight was on the edge of the board. Christopher attacked it with his pawn and the Slovakian player kindly moved it to a square where it could be taken by Christopher’s Queen. Having said that Christopher played the opening well and was always better. Thank you very much and we’ll take that for a 50% score of 5.5/11.

(296) Christopher Tombolis – Radovan Priechodsky [A75]

Nadia Jaufarally had the black pieces against another strong WFM rated over 2000 from Russia. Until the last round the Russian girl had been difficult to beat scoring draws or wins in each of her rounds. Nadia played a good game making a couple of mistakes which proved decisive but fought valiantly. This was a good tournament for her with a tremendous win in round 10. Nadia finishes on 6/9

Anita Somton was playing an even stronger WFM on paper than Nadia with the black pieces from Spain. This one didn’t go Anita’s way leaving her with 5.5/9

Nilomi Desai had the white pieces against a lower rated Irish player. This didn’t go Nilomi’s way and she ends up with 4/11 in the tournament.

And as the player setting a trap pondered snidely over his pieces and another fretted sulkily in a worse position the tournament is over now and we forget the battles we have lost and won on the chess board for now and become friends once more. It has been a privilege to write these reports for the England team. It’s time to let whatever hair we have down, perhaps drink some champagne and yes indeed, why not send pizza to a friend?! That’s what I’ll be doing to celebrate.

To those who met or exceeded their expectations, hearty congratulations. To those that did not remember the words of Luna Lovegood —
‘The things we lose have a way of coming back to us in the end. If not always in the way we expect.’

— Glafcos Tombolis

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