I promised to write about Najdorf Memorial but again somehow I didn’t have much time ūüėÄ and basically there was not much to say… I lost 7th round to relatively weaker opponent and it was kind over for me. I made draw in 8th round and won 9 round finishing the event with only 4/9 again loosing some ELO points. But I think it was very good training for me, I learnt few new things and what’s maybe much more important – I reminded myself bunch of interesting things I knew some years ago. As usual now I feel like I would play much better chess if I play next tournament but next month I’m doing some other stuff so I can forget everything again just to recall it during the next tournament ūüėČ That’s how it works when you don’t play regularly… and it’s not only with chess, it’s with everything, it’s life.

In order not to leave you with just some sad comments I’ll share with you one interesting endgame from the tournament. In 4th round I played White against Woman International Master Yuliya Shvayger (rated 2287). I got winning position after the opening but I managed to spoilt later just getting slightly better endgame.

P.Nguyen vs Y.Shvayger


It’s Black to move and it looks that even though c4 pawns is falling Black can create some counterplay as White has so many pawn islands.

30…Rd8?¬†with interesting idea in mind should White take on c4 but it¬†just runs to nice grip for White by force.

Correct was¬†30… Ra8¬†31. a4 (immediate 31.Rxc4?! is not good in view of ¬†31…Ra3) Ra5 32. Rxc4 Ke6 and even though White won a pawn things are not that¬†easy 33. e4 +/=


Black’s idea was that after 31. Rxc4?¬†she could play 31…Ne5 32. Rc7+ Ke6 33. Kf2 (33. Rxh7?!¬†Rd2 and Black will pick up some pawns while White’s king is very weak)¬†33… Rd2+ 34. Ne2 Kd6 35. Rc3 Rd1 and even though White is pawn up it’s hard¬†to create any passed pawns, Black is very active so it would have ended most¬†likely with a draw.

31… Ke8 32. Re6+ Kf7 33. Rd6 Ke8 34. a4!¬†Fixing b6 pawn, Black is¬†in kind of zugzwang 34…f5

Black couldn’t move the rook 34… Ra8?? 35. Rxd7; 34… Rc8?? 35. Rxd7; and if 34…Rb8? 35. Kf2 +- and Black is hopeless.

35. Kf2 Nc5¬†Black had to do this finally 36. Rxd8+ Kxd8 37.Nxb6 c3¬†(37…Kc7 38.a5!) 38. Ke2 h5P.Nguyen vs Y.Shvayger


Now I went a bit wrong with 39. Kf3

The fastest way to finish the job was straightforward 39. a5 Kc7 40. Nd5+ Kb7 41. Nxc3 Ka6 42. Nd5 Kxa5 43. Ne7 picking up kingside pawns.

39… Nd3!?¬†and things became very tricky but I managed to keep everything under control. 40. a5

It was ¬†easy to spoil the position¬†playing passive 40.Ke2 Nb4 and now still 41.a5 Kc7 42.Na4! wins but one could go 41.Kd1? Kc7 42.Nc4 h4 (42…Kc6 43.Na3!) 43.Na3! and probably White still wins but the mess was really unnecessary.

40…Nb4 (40… Kc7 41.Nd5+ Kb7 42. e4 +-) 41. e4!¬†I worked out it well and the rest is very simple

41…f4 (41… Nxc2 42. a6 Nd4+ 43. Ke3 Nb5 44. exf5 +-) 42. Ke2 Nxc2 43. a6 Nd4+ 44. Kd3 Nb5 (44… c2 45. a7 c1=Q 46. a8=Q+ Ke7 47. Nd5+ Kf7 48. Kxd4+-) 45. Nd5 h4 (45… c2 46. Kxc2 Kd7 47. Nf6+ Kc8 48. Nxh5 Kc7 49. e5 $18) 46. Nxc3 Nxc3 47. a7 1-0