Saturday, 1 February 2014

Gibraltar Masters update

After five rounds of the Gibraltar Masters, Suffolk's David Spence is on three points, the same score as GMs Nigel Short and Stephen Gordon, and just 1½ points behind the joint leaders.

After an excellent draw in Round 1 against a 2614-rated GM, David lost to another GM in Round 2, followed by a surprising draw against a 1941.   But since then he has won his next two games, with today's in Round 5 being his best result to date, beating a 2419-rated FM.

To date David has gained 15 rating points, which would take his 'live' rating to 2231.

The other East Anglian Player, Ashley Stewart from Cambridge, is on 2½ points, with a similar rating improvement of 15 points.

One of the best moves seen so far occurred in the first round when GM Gata Kamsky was Black (to play):

Gata uncorked the brilliant 23... Nf2!

Black now threatens mate in one along the g-file, so White has to weaken his kingside further.   Either capture of the knight would end in instant disaster with the loss of White's queen.

The game continued 24. g4   Qh4   25. Nxc8   Qg3+ 26. Kf1   N2xh3 and White resigned.

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