Round 8: same leaders at the top
The central game of the eighth round between Ju Wenjun and Hou Yifan finished in a draw and both leaders secured their places at the top with 6, 5 points. Batchimeg Tuvshintugs outplayed Alina L’Ami and keeps the third place after eight rounds one point behind the leaders. Elina Danielian defeated Nafisa Muminova and shares the fourth place with Anna Ushenina and Harika Dronavalli. Other games finished in a draw but Zhao Xue had the highest chances to grab the full point in the game against Tatiana Kosintseva. Hou Yifan and Humpy Koneru keep 3 points distance and Hou Yifan needs only one draw to win the first place in the FIDE Women Grand Prix Series 2013-2014.
Tomorrow is free day and the ninth round will start at 3 pm on 4th of September.
Batchimeg Tuvshintugs 1-0 Alina l'Ami
Alina L’Ami tried to avoid opponent’s preparation and chose to play a bit different setup compare to her previous games. In the middle game Tuvshintugs missed an interesting opportunity to play on the King’s side.
25.f5!? Nd7 26.fg fg 27.e5!? with unclear position.
After quieter 25.Qc2 Black was just in time to create conter play on the King's side and place pieces in better positions. According to Alina, she saw the right plan starting with 30...Nd7 but could not explain why she had changed her mind at the last moment. The fight could have just started but after blunder 30.Qf6 White got a piece and after the time control Romanian player resigned.
Nafisa Muminova let Elina Danielian to exchange her dark-square bishop in the opening and that was the beginning of her problems. Black refused to go into the worse endgame and was suffering in the middle game. Elina played very precisely and didn’t let any chance to her opponent.
Elina Danielian 1-0 Nafisa Muminova
Anna Ushenina 1/2-1/2 Humpy Koneru
Anna Ushenina could not find a clear plan after the opening and let her opponent to obtain a comfortable position. Humpy tried to find chances to complicate the things but White has too solid position during whole game. Former world champion felt the right moment to exchange most of the pieces and made a draw.
Ju Wenjun 1/2–1/2 Hou Yifan
Hou Yifan stopped “competing” with Caruana on who will win more games in a row and after 4 victories made a draw with her compatriot and co leader. The victory in this game could have put Hou Yifan at the top of women’s live rating list. Nevertheless World Champion admitted it was not her goal and she was not thinking about it during the game. The position was equal after the opening and after most of the pieces had left the board the move repetion followed.
Zhu Chen 1/2 – 1/2 Harika Dronavalli
Zhu Chen decided to go for moves repetition in the position which she believed was better for White. “Black still has to prove if she has equal play but my tournament situation is not so good, so I decided to use an opportunity to make a draw at the early stage of the game”, said former world champion. Harika believed the final position was equal but agreed that Black needed to be watchful.
Zhao Xue 1/2-1/2 Tatiana Kosinsteva
Tatiana was not familiar with this line in the Queens Indian. Black was late with attack on the King’s side and underestimated White’s pressure on the Queen’s side. Chinese player sacrificed a pawn and got a very good compensation due to excellent location of her pieces.
After 24…Rd7. Things cannot be good if Black needs to place her pieces this unfortunate way. After 25.d6! Black’s position collapses. Later on Zhao Xue didn’t play precisely and let her opponent to escape.
Chinese player went for the force line but missed she cannot play 34.Ba6 in the end because of 34...d3 and 35...d2.