After his confidence boosting win in round 9, Callum Brewer was playing an FM from Slovenia with the black pieces. We had no idea he would go to infinity and beyond with this amazing victory. This must be the highlight of his tournament, but you never know, he still has round 11 to look forward to. Callum always had the advantage in a well-controlled game and when his opponent made a blunder Callum made him pay the ultimate price a few moves later. Callum is on 5/10.
(154) Bratkovic, Jakob (2242) – Brewer, Callum D (2056) [B22]
Gautam Jain faced a tough one as black against a Spanish player rated over 2000. The Spanish players are always well prepared. So, it proved in this one. As usual Gautam offered as much resistance as he could but was unable to ward off the Spanish players attack. Gautam is on 3.5/10.
FM Koby Kalavannan faced another FM from France also as black. This one was always likely to produce a decisive result with the French player losing 3 as well as winning 5 of the last 9 games. However, curiouser and curiouser, this one belied the stats despite the fact that Koby was in a better position throughout the match. He was unable to find a way through the complications that his opponent created, and the game was drawn with only 2 kings left on the board. Koby is on 6/10.
(157) Travadon, Loic (2293) – Kalavannan, Koby (2365) [E90]
Leif Hafstad had the white pieces against his higher-rated Norwegian FM opponent. This went to the form book unfortunately and Leif will be on 4/10 going into the final round.
Max French was playing black against a Hungarian FM. Max feels like he is suffering the consequences of hard contests in previous rounds and felt tired today. He didn’t play his best by his own admission and lost against his titled opponent. Max needs to put this behind him quickly in order to get a confidence boosting victory in the final round. Max is on 4/10.
A battle of the ages took place on board 31 with Ilya Misyura as white playing Aditya Munshi. A clash of English titans but who would have bragging rights? The truth is a draw was inevitable. They sat down in post-game analysis to discuss the match. Each player had their own version of events. Ilya’s version was that he did 20 minutes of prep for 1 line about 20 moves deep. Aditya claimed that he had it all under control. Well, they can say whatever they like, after all its all Greek to me. You be the judge. Both players are on 5 points with some work to do to get a 50% score tomorrow.
Christopher Tombolis was playing black against his 2000+ graded Israeli opponent. Christopher was taken by surprise in the opening and emerged worse and a pawn down. A strategic mistake in the middle game compounded problems and the position that arose meant the tactics were always going to be in the Israeli player’s favour. Christopher went on to lose the game but needs to fight hard tomorrow to get 50% score. Christopher is on 4.5/10
Nadia Jaufarally had a tough one with the white pieces against a WCM rated over 2000. The truth is Nadia doesn’t want the tournament to come to a close. She’s hit top form now and had a beautiful win today with a blazing king side attack. This was a crazy game and there were several moments where to follow the computer’s continuation she would have to do something off the wall and crazy. A phrase that has served me well is ‘What would Nanny do’ and ultimately Nadia followed this mantra. In essence to follow the safest and most efficient path to victory and the path that would give her coach Peter Wells the least number of heart palpitations before the end of the game. Nadia is on 6/10.
(156) Jaufarally, Nadia (1810) – Toncheva, Nadya (2002) [B30]
Anita Somton also had white against a slightly lower-rated Slovenian player- Pia-Marie Kuzic. The story of this game started out very much like ‘Mary had a little lamb’. In the nursery rhyme the lamb follows Mary around everywhere because she loves her so much. Well in this game Pia-Marie trustingly followed the pawn Anita was offering only to realise far to late that that she was not Anita’s little lamb but a lamb to the slaughter. That’s what you get for pawn grabbing and leaving the protection of your king’ I’m afraid. Poor Pia- Marie, having bought the carrots she received the stick only a move later. A well-played game by Anita. Anita is on 5.5/10
(155) Somton, Anita (1787) – Ruzic, Pia Marie (1691) [C01]
Nilomi Desai had the black pieces against a lower-rated Kosovan player. Another drawn game for Nilomi taking her to 4/10. Nilomi will fight hard in the last game.
Good luck to all our England players in round 11. I think at the end of my last report I referred to the fact there were 12 rounds. Clearly, I don’t want to go home. Onto the final round and hopes and dreams abound.
— Glafcos Tombolis