Generation Chess International Tournament
Round Four

All games were decisive… this typifies the spirit of the battle as a couple games (Akobian-Yudasin and Paschall-Perelshteyn) could very well have ended in draws. Irina Krush continues her onslaught by upending GM Jaan Ehlvest. Muhammad got into the win column with a hard-fought win over 15-year old Canadian IM Mark Bluvshtein.


Akobian-Yudasin, 0-1. Commentator Eric Schiller called Akobian the first casualty of the 50-move no-draw rule. In other words, this game would normally had been drawn near move 20, but with the no-draw rule in place, the two players had to continue to play an equal ending. In fact, one spectator at the Internet Chess Club claimed that GM Yudasin had privately complained to him about having to play out hopelessly drawn endings. Perhaps this game will change his perspective! The first 20 moves of this Nimzo-Indian were nothing spectacular, but after 2o.Bxc6, the first imbalance was created.  However, Akobian would be saddled with a knight against a long-range bishop and begin to falter with 34.Nh5?! Due to this loss of time, black had time to coordinate his pieces and slice the board in half. To prevent an invasion of the black king, white had to pitch a pawn on the king-side and Yudasin slowly banished the white knight to the queenside and began to march his majority. Akobian disappointedly resigned. So far, a tough tournament for the talented player.

Krush-Ehlvest, 1-0.
This game was featured on the main board at the Internet Chess Club (ICC).  Irina Krush has earned one previous GM norm at the New York City International in June 2001 at appears to be well on her way to earning a second with a win over the strong Estonian Grandmaster. Ehlvest appeared to get a slight spatial advantage out of the Nimzo-Indian, but Krush got play down the e-file by attacking black's pawn wedge with 19.e4!? and doubling the rooks on the e-file. She then set up a long-range attack by playing 22.Qb1! (threatening 23.exd5 when black's bank rank is weak). Due to the pressure on the e-file and h1-a8 diagonal, Krush won a pawn and simplified into a technically winning R+P ending. All that was required was a bit of technique and the former U.S. Women's champ was up to the task. Great performance and Krush sits atop the leader board with 3½-½!

Christiansen-Simutowe, 1-0.
This opening was not what Simutowe would've ordered. Typically employing the Najdorf Sicilian, the Zambian IM found himself in a Panov-Botvinnik Attack with h6 thrown in. This extra move allowed white to establish a grip on the queenside light squares . Christiansen played 19.Nc5! and instead of exchanging pieces with 19…bxc5 20.Bxa5,  Simutowe retreated his bishop with  even more space with 19…Be8?! Finally, Christiansen seized the initiative after 21.Bxa5 bxa5 and Simutowe could no longer prevent a wholesale invasion of his queenside. As the noose tightened after 29.Na6, the Zambian jettisoned a pawn to trade off several pieces and solved some of his problems, but Christiansen kept a grip on the position.  After 33.Bf3, Fritz recommended 33…Kf8 with only a slight advantage to white, but Simutowe blundered with 33…Bd8 and allowed white to break through by promoting the passed pawn.

Muhammad-Bluvshtein, 1-0. What a relief for America's newest IM! Muhammad had struggled in his first three games and this tough win will certainly give a shot to his confidence level. This game typified the fighting spirit of Muhammad as he could've easily folded when black wrested the initiative… four losses in a row would have been devastating. Nevertheless, a win puts him back on track.

This game featured a known line in the Tarrasch Defense. "EeEk" of the ICC mentioned that Bluvshtein had played a similar line on two occasions two weeks ago. The key position occurred after 10…Be6. In
Daly-Bluvshtein (7 April 2003), the game went 11. b3 Qa5 12. Nxc6 bxc6 13. Qd2 Rad8 14. Rfd1 Bb4 15. Bxf6 gxf6 which is slightly different from the game continuation of 11. b3 Qa5 12. Qd2 Bb4 13. Nxc6 bxc6 14. Bxf6 gxf6 15. Rfc1 Rac8.

Game start 5 back 1 back 1 forward 5 forward Game end flip board autoplay


In another side story… "Aries2" of the ICC said that the entire line beginning with 9…c4 is dubious and that white should continue with 11. f4! Nxe5 12. fxe5 Ne4 13. Bxe7 Nxc3 14. bxc3 Qxe7 15. e4! He cited Kasparov-Hjorth, 1980!

Muhammad continued with 16.Bxc4 dxc4 17.a3!? (17.e4 was played in
GM Lugovoi - Bluvshtein  - 3 April 2003 - and ended in a draw). Black certainly couldn't play 17…Bxa3?? because of 18.Qa2! winning a piece, so the bishop sauntered back to e7. It appeared that Muhammad's attempt at the initative backfired after 22…Rxd5! (22…f5 would be met by 23.d6!) and after a series of moves, black's c-pawn was looking quite dangerous.

Bluvshtein abandoned the pawn to place two rooks on the 7th with 30…Rf5. This allowed Muhammad to counter with 31.f4! and reclaim the initiative. After this, Muhammad started to harass black's bishop with 33.g4! and after 36.f5 and 37.f6, established a deadly pawn wedge giving rise to mating possibilities. Black position grew in disrepair as white invaded black's weakened position, won two pawns and closed out the win with flawless endgame technique. Nice comeback by Muhammad!

Paschall-Perelshteyn, 0-1. Another disheartening loss for Paschall. Both he and Akobian have probably had the hardest "luck" of any of the players. Paschall burst out the opening attacking Perelshteyn's Accelerated Dragon and seem to be winning after 16.Bg7! Paschall missed 18.Qxa7! (recommended by ICC spectators) and allowed black to consolidate into a position with a superior pawn structure. Even so, the result would normally be a draw. Fritz 8 still evaluated white as slightly better before 31.Re5? Black would win the c-pawn and eventually grind out a win as his connected pawns would eventually steamroll up the board. Tough loss for Paschall! Not a good result when one is about to face a Grandmaster.

Cross Table
Round Four Games (playable and downloadable)
All Games (PGN download)

Standings: Krush, Perelshteyn, ;  Christiansen, 3; Simutowe, Ehlvest, Bluvshtein, Yudasin, 2; Muhammad, 1; Paschall, Akobian, ½.

Drum Reports

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