2005 US Chess Championship

Round Six
1   GM Gregory Serper  
  GM Hikaru Nakamura
2   GM Alex Stripunsky  
  GM Alexander Fishbein
3   GM Sergey Kudrin  
  GM Gregory Kaidanov
4   GM Ildar Ibragimov  
  GM Boris Gulko
5   GM Yury Shulman  
  GM Alexander Shabalov
6   GM Gata Kamsky  
  GM Joel Benjamin
7   GM Alexander Goldin  
  IM Levon Altounian
8   GM Igor Novikov  
  IM Renier Gonzalez
9   GM Alexander Onischuk  
  IM Dmitry Schneider
10   FM Dmitry Zilberstein  
  GM Varuzhan Akobian
11   GM Alex Yermolinsky  
  GM Julio Becerra
12   GM Dmitry Gurevich  
  GM Nick DeFirmian
13   GM Larry Christiansen  
  FM Lev Milman
14   Salvijus Bercys  
  GM Aleks Wojtkiewicz
15   GM Alexander Ivanov  
  IM Blas Lugo
16   IM Eugene Perelshteyn  
  IM Irina Krush (w)
17   IM Cyrus Lakdawala  
  FM Stephen Muhammad
18   WGM Anna Zatonskih (w)  
  GM Walter Browne
19   IM Stanislav Kriventsov  
  WGM Rusudan Goletiani (w)
20   IM Ben Finegold  
  WIM Tsagaan Battsetseg (w)
21   IM Yury Lapshun  
  WIM Anna Hahn (w)
22   IM Ron Burnett  
  IM Jesse Kraai
23   FM Robby Adamson  
  FM Tegshuren Enkhbat
24   FM Matt Hoekstra  
  FM Marcel Martinez
25   FM Fabio La Rota  
  FM Joshua Friedel
26   WFM Tatev Abrahamyan (w)  
  GM Anatoly Lein
27   Jake Kleiman  
  Vanessa West (w)
28   FM Michael Casella  
  Iryna Zenyuk (w)
29   WIM Jennifer Shahade (w)  
  WFM Laura Ross (w)
30   Chouchanik Airapetian (w)  
  FM Bruci Lopez
31   WIM Esther Epstein (w)  
  Tatiana Vayserberg (w)
32   WFM Anna Levina (w)  
  WFM Olga Sagalchik (w)

Cuba (5) - The Rest of the World (0)

Any journalist worth his/her weight in gold would have a field day with the main story of the 6th round of the U.S. Championships. An improbable occurrence happened when the five Cuban émigrés not only won their games, but each won playing the black pieces! What are the odds of that happening even with the Ukrainian émigrés?? Slim. Nevertheless, the presence of the Cubans is historic and their spirits are certainly high. FM Marcel Martinez's recent emergence from a brief hiatus has been a spark to the south Miami contingent.

IM Renier Gonzalez played what he said (on chess.fm) was the craziest game he'd ever played in his life. Novikov, who is not considered an attacking player, revved up his engine in this explosive encounter. It appeared as if Gonzalez would be sent to his room early as Novikov pushed pawns onto his king will ill-intent (click here). However, Novikov's king chilled dangerously in the middle of the board.

What happened next?

After 18.f4!? the board was set ablaze as pieces were flying all over the board and when the smoke cleared, Gonzalez had beaten back the kingside onslaught and had launched an attack of his own.  Novikov was unable to the save position after donating his queen… the black queen then mopped up the board and white resigned. Truly a crazy affair!

Team Cuba - Front L-R: IM Renier Gonzalez, FM Marcel Martinez, Back L-R: IM Blas Lugo, FM Bruci Lopez, GM Julio Becerra

Team Cuba

Sitting L-R: IM Renier Gonzalez, FM Marcel Martinez, Standing L-R: IM Blas Lugo, FM Bruci Lopez, GM Julio Becerra.

In an unprecedented "whitewash" of the field, the Cubans scored the following wins: Gonzalez (over Igor Novikov), Becerra (over Alexander Yermolinsky),  Lugo (over Alexander Ivanov), Martinez (over Matthew Hoekstra) and Lopez (over Chouchanik Airapetian). South Miami should be rocking!

Hikaru Nakamura and Gregory Serper played a weird encounter which ended in a fortress draw.  In the middlegame, Serper decided to wait for the young star to make a move. This tactic drew ire from fans across the world, but perhaps it was a means to gain some time. Serper had slipped 20-25 minutes behind at one point.  Between moves 15 and 25, Serper shuttled his bishop between d2 and e1 and observers were wondering when the punch line was coming. 

While baiting Nakamura to take action, Serper hunkered down and watch his opponent break down the door on the queenside. However, Nakamura was only able to come out of it with a slight positional advantage. They played on another 50 moves until Serper found a cute drawing sequence leading to a stalemate. Analysts were praising Nakamura's will to win and the comparisons to
Bobby Fischer (which are already plentiful) continued to flow in the chess media.

Alex Stripunsky's win over Alex Fishbein, he pulls into sole possession of 1st place with three rounds remaining.  There is a four-way deadlock for second with Gregory Kaidanov and Yury Shulman joining Nakamura and Serper.

Serper had a little fun with  82.Nxe4!  and set up…

Serper had a little fun with  82.Nxe4!  and set up…

… a drawing fortress!

… a drawing fortress!

Round #6 Information Center

Selected Games

GM Gregory Serper - GM Hikaru Nakamura, ½-½
GM Larry Christiansen - FM Lev Milman, 0-1
GM Igor Novikov - IM Renier Gonzalez, 0-1
WGM Anna Zatonskih - GM Walter Browne, 1-0
IM Cyrus Lakdawala - FM Stephen Muhammad, ½-½

PGN download (all 32 games)

The Chess Drum

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