Eat Sleep Chess Repeat in India!

Cruising along the 10k morning race in Kochi together with my friend David Bennett, local, and international participants
With a few days to spare before the tournament series, I started my Indian journey coming into the southern coastal city of Kochi in the state of Kerala. Years ago, I played World Youth Team Championship U-16 and World Championship U-20 years old here. Now we got together with my friend David Bennett to explore Kochi and run a 10k race before we were to head for our first tourney of the series in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh over in the central part of the country.
A tough team!
Meeting friends in Goa, “One day in sea paradise”

Bhopal:

December 20-28, 2017
The view from our excursion at Upper Lake
Participants in the circuit really appreciated the brand new effort by the local organizers. Despite humble accommodation, the hotel was next to the playing venue with large outdoor space including the top floor patio with beautiful sunset views towards the end of the afternoon round. had a few confident victories and ended up leading the tourney with 6.5 out of 7. However impressive the lead, each one of the tournaments in the series had over 300 competitors alike big American events such as US Open. The field gets tough as you strive to keep the victories coming.
[pgn][Event "Bhopal"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2017.12.30"]
[Round "?"]
[White "David Alberto"]
[Black "Gareyev Timur"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "C92"]
[Annotator "Gareyev,Timur"]
[PlyCount "74"]
[EventDate "2017.??.??"]
[SourceDate "2011.05.31"]1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 (5... b5 6. Bb3) 6. Re1 b5
7. Bb3 d6 8. c3 O-O 9. h3 Bb7 10. d4 Re8 11. Nbd2 Bf8 12. a3 g6 (12... Na5 13.
Bc2 c5 14. b4 cxd4 15. bxa5 dxc3 16. Nb3) 13. Bc2 Bg7 14. Nb3 Rb8 (14... exd4
15. cxd4 a5 16. d5 Ne5 17. Nxe5 Rxe5 18. Bf4 Rh5 19. Qd2 a4 20. Nd4 (20. Nc1
Qe8) 20... Nxd5) 15. Bg5 (15. d5 Ne7) 15... h6 16. Bh4 Qc8 (16... exd4 17. cxd4
Qd7) (16... a5 17. d5 (17. a4 bxa4 18. Rxa4 exd4 19. cxd4 Nb4) 17... a4) 17. d5
{My opponent followed his intuition on a straightforward strategic plan. I
focused on the opportunities to try and hold a good defense.} Ne7 18. Bxf6 Bxf6
19. Na5 Ba8 20. b4 Kg7 21. Bb3 Rd8 22. Qd3 {White is now all set on conquering
the queen side via c3-c4. All of my pieces are set in anticipation of game
opening up.} c5 {Staying proactive} (22... c6) 23. dxc6 (23. c4) 23... Nxc6 24.
Nxc6 Bxc6 25. Rad1 Rb7 26. Nh2 (26. Bd5 Bxd5 27. Qxd5 Rc7 $17) (26. c4 Rc7 $11)
26... Bg5 {As my opponent wants to maneouver his knight, I direct my bishop to
gain control over the dark squares.} 27. Nf3 Be7 28. Nd2 f5 $5 {Finally a
break through! Despite the impressive counterplay, this is still an even game.}
29. Bc2 Rf8 30. Qe2 (30. f4 $1 exf4 31. exf5 Rxf5 32. Qd4+ Bf6 33. Qxd6 Rd5 34.
Qxf4 Rf7 35. Qe3 Qc7 $44) 30... Rc7 31. Bd3 Bb7 32. a4 Rxc3 33. axb5 axb5 34.
exf5 gxf5 35. Bxb5 Rf6 {Going for the kill!} (35... Kh7 {Rg8}) 36. Nb1 $2 Rxh3
$1 37. Rc1 Rg6 $1 {My opponent realized the hopelessness of his situation and
resigned.} (37... Rg6 38. Rxc8 Rxg2+ 39. Kf1 Rh1#) 0-1[/pgn]
As I pushed forward in my later rounds, suddenly, a disaster struck. I lost two games in a row, falling out of the contention for the top prizes. Aside from trying to find improvements and analyzing the flow of the games, this did not put me too much into my head, as I primarily enjoyed the experience of being in India, playing, communicating, and seeing lots of interesting chess.
[pgn][Event "Bhopal International GM Chess Tournamen"]
[Site "Hotel Kanta Shrawan Palace, N"]
[Date "2017.12.26"]
[Round "8.1"]
[White "Gareyev, Timur"]
[Black "Tran, Tuan Minh"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "E21"]
[WhiteElo "2606"]
[BlackElo "2544"]
[Annotator "Timur Gareyev"]
[PlyCount "161"]
[EventDate "2017.12.21"]
[EventRounds "10"]
[EventCountry "IND"]
[SourceDate "2011.05.31"]1. d4 e6 2. c4 Nf6 3. Nf3 b6 4. Nc3 Bb4 5. Qb3 a5 6. Bg5 Bb7 7. e3 h6 8. Bh4 g5
9. Bg3 Ne4 10. Bd3 Bxc3+ 11. bxc3 d6 12. c5 $5 Nxg3 13. hxg3 dxc5 14. O-O {
Despite the thematic push for initiative, White's play is not enough for the
sacrificed pawn.} Nd7 15. Bb5 c6 16. Bc4 a4 17. Qb2 Qc7 18. Rad1 b5 19. Be2 c4
$15 20. e4 O-O-O 21. e5 f6 22. exf6 Rhf8 (22... Nxf6 23. Ne5 h5 24. f4 g4 25.
f5 Rde8) 23. Rfe1 Rxf6 24. Nd2 {after some inaccurate play by black, White's
pieces come alive} Kb8 25. Bg4 h5 26. Bxh5 $6 (26. Bxe6 $1 Nf8 27. Bxc4 $1 bxc4
28. Nxc4 $44 {I did consider this idea during the game and surprisingly did
not pull the triger.} h4 29. gxh4 gxh4 30. Rb1 Rg6 $2 (30... Rd5 31. Re8+ Ka7
32. Qa3 Rb5 33. Qxa4+ Ba6 34. Rbe1 $36) 31. Na5 $18) 26... Rh6 27. g4 Nf6 28.
Ne4 (28. Rxe6 Nxg4 29. Bxg4 Qh2+ 30. Kf1 Rxe6 31. Bxe6 Re8 32. Nf3 Qh1+ 33. Ng1
Rxe6 34. d5 Rd6 35. Qb4 $11) 28... Nxh5 29. gxh5 Rxh5 30. Ng3 Rhh8 31. Qb1 $6 (
31. Rxe6 {Indeed, I had a feeling taking the pawn back was best despite Black's
threats along h-file combined with c6-c5 opening up the diagonal for the
bishop.} Qh7 32. Kf1 Rdf8 33. Re3 Qh2 34. Qc2 (34. d5 cxd5 35. Qxb5 d4 36. Qe5+
$11) 34... Rf4 35. Qg6 Rhf8 36. Rd2 {White defended well and is ready to take over
}) 31... Rdf8 32. Re5 (32. Rxe6) 32... Qf7 33. f3 $6 (33. Qc2) 33... g4 $17 34.
Rf1 gxf3 35. Rxf3 Qg7 36. Nh5 Qh6 37. Rxf8+ Rxf8 38. Qe1 Ka8 (38... Rg8 $1 {
aiming for c5 opening the bishop is crushing} 39. Ng3 c5) 39. Ng3 Rf6 40. Ne4
Rg6 41. Nc5 {Now, I managed to solidify my game and block off my opponents
counterplay.} Qh3 42. Re2 Bc8 43. Rf2 Qg4 44. a3 Rg8 45. Rd2 Qg5 46. Rf2 Qd5
47. Qe3 Ka7 {Right about here, my opponent offered a draw. Despite missing a pawn,
and both my opponent and I playing on increment, I figured I could go for more.
.} 48. Qf4 (48. Ne4) 48... e5 {very obvious counterplay that I somehow missed}
49. Qxe5 (49. Qh2 $1 {was now necessary} Ka8 (49... Kb6 50. Re2 exd4 $4 51.
Qb8+ Kxc5 52. Qa7+ Kd6 53. Qe7#) 50. Qxe5 $1 Qxe5 51. dxe5 Rg5 52. Rf8 $1 Kb8
53. e6 Rxc5 54. e7 Re5 55. e8=Q Rxe8 56. Rxe8 $18) 49... Qxe5 50. dxe5 Rg5 51.
Rf8 Rxe5 52. Nxa4 Bf5 53. Nb2 Bc2 54. Kf2 Rd5 55. Ke3 Rg5 56. Rf2 Bb3 57. Kf4
Rh5 58. Rf1 Rh7 59. Rg1 Rh2 60. Nd1 $2 {I had to keep status quo keeping the
guard of the queen side, as my weak-looking knight combined with my opponent's
sloppy bishop made a good pair.} (60. Kg3 Rh8 61. Kf4 Kb6 62. g4 Rf8+ 63. Ke3
Re8+ 64. Kf4 Re2 65. Nd1 {Still allowing black to trade the bishop for the
knight in much better version than the game.}) 60... Bxd1 61. Kg3 Rh8 62. Rxd1
{Black's plan is now simple: Use the rook to stop and potentially even
sacrifice for the g-passer while collecting my queen side pawns with his king
and pushing his b and c-pawns forward.} Kb6 63. Kf4 Rf8+ $6 (63... Ka5 $1 $19)
64. Ke3 Rg8 (64... Ka5 $17) 65. Kf3 $2 (65. Rg1 $1 Rg3+ 66. Kd2 Ka5 67. Kc2 Ka4
68. Kb2 c5 69. Kc2 $11) 65... Ra8 66. Ra1 Rf8+ 67. Ke3 $2 (67. Ke2 Ka5 $1 (
67... Rg8 68. Rg1 Ka5 69. Kd2 Ka4 70. Kc2 Rg3 71. Kb2 c5 72. Kc2 {still is
nothing for black}) 68. a4 $1 bxa4 69. g4 Rf4 70. Rb1 Rxg4 71. Rb8 c5 72. Ra8+
Kb5 73. Kd2 $11) 67... Rd8 68. g4 Rd3+ 69. Kf4 Rxc3 70. g5 Rd3 71. g6 Ka5 72.
g7 Rd8 73. Ke5 $2 {final mistake, it was still possible to hold!} (73. Rg1 $1
Rg8 74. Ke3 Ka4 75. Kd4 Kxa3 76. Kc3 b4+ 77. Kxc4 b3 78. Kc3 b2 79. Kc2 Ka2 80.
Rb1) 73... Ka4 74. Rg1 c3 75. g8=Q Rxg8 76. Rxg8 c2 77. Rg1 Kxa3 78. Kd6 b4 79.
Kc5 b3 80. Kc4 b2 81. Kd4 0-1[/pgn]
This was one of the longest games of the tournament, with unfortunate result for me. I was able to successfully fight through the tumultuous middle game. However, during the play on increment, I failed to maintain my positional edge via solid proactive game. In the endgame, I was able to maintain dynamic equality but mis-evaluated my chances in the rook endgame. As I allowed my opponent to trade his bishop for my knight, my pawns became weak, and I was not fast enough to hold fortress or create substantial counterplay.
Playing basketball with chess players and local kids
Cricket time!
Meanwhile as I was wrapping up my tournament number one chess adventure, I faced one of India’s top youngsters Arjun Erigasi in the last round.
[pgn][Event "Bhopal"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2017.12.30"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Gareyev"]
[Black "Erigasi"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "A11"]
[Annotator "Gareyev,Timur"]
[PlyCount "87"]
[EventDate "2017.??.??"]
[SourceDate "2011.05.31"]1. e3 {My recent favorite opening I tend to call Anti-French.} Nf6 2. Nf3 d5 3.
c4 c6 4. Nc3 e6 5. Rg1 {Pretty direct effort to stir some action on the
king-side.} Nbd7 (5... c5 {was certainly best} 6. g4 d4 7. exd4 cxd4 8. g5 dxc3
9. gxf6 cxd2+ 10. Bxd2 gxf6 11. Qc2 Nc6 12. O-O-O) (5... h5 $5 6. h3 c5 7. d4
cxd4 8. exd4 Be7 9. c5 Nc6 10. g4 hxg4 11. hxg4 Ne4 12. g5 e5) 6. g4 Bd6 7. Qc2
Ne5 8. Nxe5 Bxe5 9. g5 Nd7 10. f4 Bd6 11. b3 Qe7 (11... e5 12. cxd5 exf4 13.
dxc6 Ne5 14. Qe4 O-O 15. cxb7 Bxb7 16. Qxb7 fxe3 17. Rg2 exd2+ 18. Bxd2) 12.
Bb2 $14 Nf8 {Black is certainly struggling to develop.} (12... b6 13. cxd5 exd5
14. Ne2 $1 $18 {hitting c6 and g7}) (12... Ba3 13. Nxd5 $1 exd5 14. Bxg7 Rg8
15. Qxh7 Rxg7 16. Qxg7 Nb6 17. cxd5 Nxd5 18. Kf2 Bf5 19. Bh3 $1 $16) 13. O-O-O
(13. Ne2 Rg8 14. Ng3 e5 15. Nh5) (13. Na4 Rg8 14. O-O-O Ba3) 13... Ba3 14. h4
Bd7 15. h5 Bxb2+ 16. Kxb2 dxc4 17. Bxc4 (17. Ne4 cxb3 18. Qc3 Rg8 19. axb3
O-O-O 20. Ra1 Kb8 21. Qe5+ Ka8 22. Qa5) 17... O-O-O 18. Ne4 e5 19. fxe5 Qxe5+
20. d4 Qe7 21. Rgf1 Be6 22. d5 cxd5 23. Bxd5+ Kb8 24. Bxb7 $1 Nd7 {My opponent
realized that accepting the bishop sacrifice was deadly.} (24... Rxd1 25. Rxd1
Kxb7 26. Nc5+ (26. Nd6+ Kb8 27. Qh2 Ka8 28. Qg2+ Kb8 29. Rd4 a5 30. Qc6) 26...
Kb6 27. Rc1 $1 (27. Na4+ Kb7 28. Qe4+ Kb8 29. Rd4 a5 30. Rd5 Qb4 31. Qe5+ Kc8
32. Rc5+ Kd8 33. Qxg7 Rg8 34. Qxg8 Ke7 35. Rc2) 27... Qd6 (27... Bd7 28. Qc3
Bb5 29. Qd4 Bc6 30. Qb4+ Kc7 31. Na6+ Kd8 32. Qb8+ Kd7 33. Qxa7+ Kd8 34. Qb6+
Ke8 35. Nc7+) 28. Qe4 Qxc5 29. Rxc5 Kxc5 30. Qe5+ Kc6 31. Qxg7) 25. Ba6 (25.
Qh2+ $1 {Insisting black accepts the "gift"} Kxb7 26. Nd6+ Kb6 27. Rd4 (27. Rf4
a5 28. Qe2 Qxg5 29. Rf5 Qxf5 30. Nxf5 Bxf5 31. Rd6+ Kc7 32. Rd5 Be6 33. Qc4+
Kb7 34. Rb5+ Nb6 35. Qc5) 27... Nc5 28. Rc1 Qc7 29. Rb4+ Kc6 30. Rxc5+ Kxc5 31.
Rb7 Qxd6 32. Qc2+ Kd5 33. Rb5+) 25... Bh3 26. Rf4 Nb6 27. Nc3 (27. Rd4 Rxd4 28.
exd4 Nd5 29. Rf2 Rd8 30. Qc5 Qxe4 31. Rxf7 Qg2+ 32. Ka3) 27... Rxd1 28. Qxd1
Bc8 29. Bxc8 Rxc8 30. Qd2 (30. Qd4 Rd8 31. Rxf7) 30... Rc7 (30... Qxg5 31. Rxf7
Qxh5 32. Qd6+ Ka8 33. Qe7) 31. Rf5 g6 32. Rb5 Rd7 (32... gxh5 33. a4 Rc5 34.
Qh2+ Ka8 35. Qg2+ Kb8 36. Qg3+ Kb7 37. Qf3+ Kb8 38. Qf4+ Ka8 39. a5 Rxb5 40.
Nxb5 Nd7 41. Nd4 Ne5 42. Qe4+ Kb8 43. Kb1) 33. Qh2+ Kb7 34. Qg2+ Kb8 35. Qg3+
Kb7 36. Qf3+ Kb8 37. Qf4+ Kb7 38. Re5 (38. a4) 38... Qd6 39. Qe4+ Ka6 40. h6 f5
(40... Qd2+ 41. Qc2 Qe1 42. Ne4 $1 $18) 41. gxf6 Qxf6 42. Ka3 (42. a4 Qf2+ 43.
Ka3 Qd2 44. Ra5+ Kxa5 45. b4+ Ka6 46. b5+ Ka5 47. Qb4#) 42... Qd6+ 43. b4 Rc7 (
43... Qxe5 44. b5+ Qxb5 (44... Ka5 45. Qb4#) 45. Nxb5 Kxb5 46. Kb3 Kc5 47. Qe5+
Kc6 48. e4 $18) 44. Ra5# 1-0[/pgn]
Alongside tournaments in Bhopal and Mumbai I played two simultaneous blindfold matches. Here is a nice miniature vs. a local kid at the blindfold match I gave on 11 boards in Bhopal.
[pgn][Event "Bhopal Match"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2018.02.14"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Timur Gareyev"]
[Black "Manas Parmar"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "C46"]
[Annotator "Gareyev,Timur"]
[PlyCount "28"]
[EventDate "2018.??.??"]
[SourceDate "2011.05.31"]1. Nc3 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 d6 4. e4 Bg4 5. Bb5 Bxf3 6. Qxf3 exd4 7. e5 dxc3 8.
Bxc6+ bxc6 9. Qxc6+ Ke7 10. exd6+ cxd6 11. O-O Rc8 12. Re1+ Kf6 13. Qf3+ Kg6 14. Qg4+ Kf6 (14... Kf6 15. Qg5#) 1-0[/pgn]

Mumbai:

December 30, 2017-January 7, 2018
Prestigious venue hosted by Mount Litera, one of the best private schools in the country as well as major support from world’s largest private finance company IIFL Wealth Management. Both the international and the youth tournaments were well accommodated. To say the least, even Anand came out to play a quick simul and attended the prize-giving. Fortunately, I tied for 2nd and ended up one of those prize winners to shake Anand’s hand. Vishy sure was in a superb mood after his win over at World Rapid Championship.
Timur in 3rd together with David Alberto who finished 2nd on tie breaks, clear 1st place finisher Parham Maghsoodloo of Iran, winner of youth event U-13 Gukesh, all honored by Vishy Anand.
The tournament was quite up-and-down for me, with three victories in a row in the last rounds, I was able to score! Here is a nice positional battle vs GM Chakravarthy which gave me a spot at the podium.
[pgn][Event "Mumbai"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2017.12.30"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Gareyev"]
[Black "Deepan"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "A21"]
[Annotator "Gareyev,Timur"]
[PlyCount "77"]
[EventDate "2017.??.??"]
[SourceDate "2011.05.31"]1. c4 e5 2. Nc3 d6 3. Nf3 (3. d4) 3... f5 4. d4 e4 5. Ng5 (5. Nd2 Nf6 6. e3 g6
7. h4 Bg7 8. h5 Nxh5 9. Rxh5 gxh5 10. Qxh5+ Kf8 11. f3 exf3 12. Nxf3 Nc6 13.
Nd5 Qd7 14. Qh4) 5... c6 6. g3 (6. Bf4 h6 7. Nh3 g5 8. Bd2 Bg7 9. e3 Nf6 10.
Ng1 c5 11. h4 Nc6 12. hxg5 hxg5 13. Rxh8+ Bxh8 14. Nh3 Ng4 15. Nd5) 6... Na6 7.
Bg2 Be7 8. Nh3 (8. h4 Nf6) 8... Nf6 9. O-O O-O (9... d5 10. cxd5 cxd5 (10...
Nxd5 11. f3 exf3 12. Bxf3) 11. Bg5 O-O 12. Nf4 Nc7 13. Qb3 b6 14. Bxf6 Bxf6 15.
Ncxd5) 10. d5 Ng4 (10... Nc7 11. f3) 11. f3 Qb6+ 12. Kh1 Ne5 (12... Ne3 13.
Bxe3 Qxe3 14. dxc6 (14. fxe4 fxe4 15. Rxf8+ Bxf8 16. Qg1 Qd2 17. Rf1 (17. Nxe4
Qxb2 18. Rf1 (18. Nhg5))) 14... bxc6 15. Nd5 cxd5 16. Qxd5+) 13. b3 (13. fxe4
Nxc4 14. dxc6 bxc6 15. Nd5 cxd5 16. Qxd5+ Kh8 17. Qxc4) 13... Bf6 14. dxc6 bxc6
15. Na4 (15. Bg5 Nxc4 16. Na4) 15... Qc7 16. Bb2 exf3 17. exf3 Bd7 18. Qd2 Rad8
19. Bc3 Qb8 20. Rad1 Be7 21. c5 (21. f4 Ng4 22. Rfe1 Rfe8 (22... Bf6) 23. Ng5
Bxg5 24. fxg5 Rxe1+ 25. Rxe1) 21... Nxc5 (21... Bc8 22. Nf4 Nxc5 23. Nxc5 dxc5
24. Qe2 Bf6 25. Nh5 Qb5 26. Qe3) 22. Nxc5 dxc5 23. Ba5 Bf6 24. Bxd8 Rxd8 25.
Qc2 Qb4 26. Nf4 c4 27. Nh5 Be7 28. Qe2 Nf7 29. Rfe1 Bf8 30. Qxc4 Qxc4 31. bxc4
Bd6 32. Re2 Rb8 33. f4 Kf8 34. Bf3 (34. c5 Bxc5 35. Rxd7 Rb1+ 36. Bf1 Rxf1+ 37.
Kg2 Rb1 (37... Rg1+ 38. Kh3 g5 39. Nf6) 38. Rc2) 34... Be8 35. Re6 Rd8 36. Nxg7
Kxg7 37. c5 Bxc5 (37... Bd7 38. Rexd6 Nxd6 39. Rxd6 Kf7 40. Kg2 Ke7 41. a4 (41.
Bxc6 Bxc6+ 42. Rxc6 Rd2+ 43. Kh3 Rxa2 44. Rc7+ Ke6 45. Rxh7 a5 46. Rh6+ Kf7 47.
Ra6) 41... a5 42. Rh6) 38. Rxd8 Nxd8 39. Rxe8 1-0[/pgn]
Celebrating the festive traditions together with Chief Arbiter Praful Zaveri
My record of the series was to be able to play a 12-game blindfold match and still win my afternoon round towards the end of the tournament in Mumbai. Meanwhile, I was astounded to find out that a few of the juniors who played in my blindfold match, not only did that, but also played their morning round at the Youth event as well as the evening Open event.
Another blindfold match with a dozen highly motivated juniors.
[pgn][Event "Mumbai Blindfold"]
[Site "Mumbai"]
[Date "2018.01.05"]
[Round "1"]
[White "Sharanya, Vinayak Adane"]
[Black "Gareyev, Timur"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]
[ECO "C42"]
[WhiteElo "1230"]
[BlackElo "2605"]
[Annotator "Timur Gareyev"]
[PlyCount "55"]
[EventDate "2018.??.??"]
[EventCountry "IND"]
[SourceDate "2011.05.31"]1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. Nxe5 d5 4. d3 dxe4 5. dxe4 Qxd1+ 6. Kxd1 Nxe4 7. Be3
$146 Bd6 8. Nc4 Bc5 9. Bxc5 Nxc5 10. Nc3 Be6 11. Be2 Nc6 $36 12. Ne3 O-O-O+ 13.
Ke1 Nd4 14. Rd1 Rhe8 15. Kd2 f5 16. g3 g5 17. Kc1 f4 (17... Ne4 $1 $17 18. Bh5
Nxf2 19. Bxe8 Nxh1) 18. gxf4 $2 (18. Bh5 $1 $11 Rf8 19. Ng4) 18... gxf4 $19 19.
Bh5 Re7 $2 (19... Rg8 $19 {Threatens to win with .. .Rg5.} 20. Nf1 Rg5 21. Rxd4
Rxd4) 20. Ng2 $11 f3 21. Ne3 a5 22. a3 a4 (22... Rg7 $11) 23. Bg4 (23. Ned5 $1
$14 Ne2+ (23... Rxd5 24. Nxd5) 24. Nxe2 Rxd5 25. Nf4 (25. Bxf3 Rxd1+ 26. Rxd1
Rf7 $16) 25... Rxd1+ 26. Rxd1) 23... Bxg4 $15 24. Nxg4 Ne4 25. Nxe4 Rxe4 26.
Ne3 $1 Ne2+ 27. Kb1 Rxd1+ 28. Rxd1 {Towards the end, we started to get short on
time, so I was willing to take it easy in a couple matches and accept peaceful
outcomes.} 1/2-1/2[/pgn]

Delhi

January 9-16, 2018
The capital of India, certainly one of the most dynamic, highly cultural, and, unfortunately, badly polluted cities in the world. The tournament was hosted at Indira Ghandi Indoor Stadium. It was a wonderful venue with outdoor views, even though at times the playing hall was freezing in the morning. Organizers were courteous to accommodate the players with free hot coffee and Indian chai. Among the four tournaments, I noted that this one was especially tricky with its schedule. A lot of the round times did not match from one day to the next and apparently were different from the original regulations. The morning rounds designed to start at 9:30 am may have been scheduled to throw off the “lazy” GMs and give the extra edge to the commonly highly underrated, thirsty for action locals. The luxurious accommodation for top players was established with Leela Palace where we had a nice buffet meals 3 times a day.
Well-deserved dinner!
As part of the all India chess adventure, we learned through experience that there is more than one Leela Palace in town. As a matter of fact, we ended up visiting 3 of those palaces in Delhi! This was all done by accident and pretty much allowed us to explore all of New and Old Delhi, going beyond the airport grounds well outside the city limits!
Sightseeing with my friend Anna who took up on her first chess tournament ever in India
The venue was located about 30-minute drive from the hotel, which made a double-round day especially tough to get through. If you decided to return to the hotel for some food and rest, you would have to start heading back to the venue almost immediately. As I looked over the schedule of the tournament circuit and the general forfeit policy of 15-30 minute at the events, I quickly realized this will be a close fight to make it over to all 39 games in India without a “bad blunder”.
“Staying headstrong”
Sure enough the premonition came true as the events in the universe aligned against my luck. Having declined the official shuttle in favor of a few extra moments of peace and preparation, I was now running late leaving the hotel. I grabbed a cab and, sure enough, was stuck in the morning traffic. What do you know, we even had the elephant slowly strolling along in front of the whole line of cars! I contacted the organizers at the start of the round, letting them know I was on my way and would be getting there late. As we arrived, I ran straight into the stadium. As I turned the corner, I noticed a kid standing in the corridor leading up to the playing hall. As I caught his gaze, I immediately realized this was my opponent. Not sure of the exact situation, I briefly asked him if he was ready to play. He mumbled yes and followed me to the board, which seemed like a positive response. As we sat down, I noticed the clock was at 33 minutes past the start time and was not running, which the forfeit came in effect at 30 minutes. My opponent, the 15-year-old Koustav Chatterjee, was hesitating to play his first move. As we started the clock back up, a few moments passed, and Koustav played 1.c4. I quickly responded with 1… e5 for classical English. Soon enough the chief arbiter appeared and suggested we stop the clock once again. We left the playing hall and discussed the circumstance. The overall situation was that the kid wanted to play and did not want a free point, even though the win by opponent’s forfeit would not ruin his norm chances, considering the tournament had 10 rounds (and norms become valid at 9 games minimum). The arbiter wanted to stay loyal to the FIDE rules and give me a zero. With some reasoning and consultation with the president of All India Chess Federation Bharat Singh, the conclusion as I understood was that we do play, and, in case someone from the tournament disagrees with the way things were assessed, they may appeal. So, we got back to the board and continued from the very start.
[pgn][Event "Delhi"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2018.01.04"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Chatterjee Koustav"]
[Black "Timur Gareyev"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "A20"]
[Annotator "Gareyev,Timur"]
[PlyCount "120"]
[EventDate "2018.??.??"]
[SourceDate "2011.05.31"]1. c4 e5 2. g3 Nf6 3. Bg2 c6 4. Nf3 e4 5. Nd4 d5 6. cxd5 Qxd5 7. Nc2 Qh5 8. Ne3
(8. Nc3 Bh3) 8... Bh3 9. Qb3 b5 (9... b6 10. d3 (10. d4 exd3 11. Qxd3 Bc5 12.
O-O Nbd7 13. Bxc6 O-O 14. Bf3 Ne5) 10... Bc5) (9... Nbd7 10. Qxb7 Rb8 11. Qxc6
Bc5 12. Bxh3 Qxh3 13. Nc3 Bxe3 14. dxe3 O-O) 10. Bxh3 Qxh3 11. Qc2 Qe6 12. b3
Na6 13. Nc3 (13. Bb2) 13... Nb4 (13... Bc5 14. a3 O-O) 14. Qb1 Bc5 $17 {
Somehow with the right opening idea, I am taking over the initiative.} 15. Bb2
O-O 16. a3 Nbd5 17. b4 (17. Nexd5 cxd5 18. b4 Bb6 19. Nxb5 a6 20. Nd4 Qh3 $19)
17... Bb6 (17... Bxe3 18. fxe3 Nb6 19. O-O (19. Nd1 Nc4 20. Bc3 Nd5) 19... Nc4
20. Bc1 a5) 18. O-O Rad8 (18... Nxe3 19. fxe3 (19. dxe3 Qh3 $19) 19... Rfd8 20.
Qc1 Ng4 $19) 19. Ncxd5 cxd5 20. Qa2 Ng4 (20... Nh5 $140 $5 {f5, f4}) 21. Kg2 h5
(21... f5 22. Nxg4 (22. h3 Ne5 23. Bxe5 Qxe5 24. f4 exf3+ 25. Rxf3 g6) 22...
fxg4 23. a4 Qh6 24. a5 Qh3+ 25. Kg1 Rf5 $19) 22. h4 (22. a4) 22... Ne5 (22...
Nh6 {f5, f4}) 23. a4 (23. Bxe5 Qxe5) 23... bxa4 (23... Ng6 24. a5 Nxh4+ 25.
gxh4 Bxe3 26. dxe3 Qg4+ $19) (23... Nc4 $5) 24. Bxe5 Qxe5 25. Qxa4 f5 26. Qb5
f4 (26... Qd4) (26... Qd6 27. f4 exf3+ 28. Rxf3 f4 29. Nf1 Qe5 $17) 27. Nc4 f3+
28. Kh2 Qe8 29. Qxe8 Rdxe8 30. Nxb6 fxe2 31. Rfe1 axb6 (31... Rxf2+ 32. Kg1
Rf1+ 33. Rxf1 exf1=Q+ 34. Rxf1 axb6 35. Rf5 $11 {is the equalizing resource I
missed in my calculation.}) 32. Rxe2 Rc8 {Having missed many decisive
opportunities, I now have to try and win the game all over again.} 33. Kg2 Rc4
34. Rb1 Rd4 35. Rb3 b5 (35... Rc8 36. f3) 36. f3 (36. d3 Rf3) 36... Rc8 37.
fxe4 dxe4 38. Rbe3 Rcc4 39. g4 hxg4 40. Kg3 Rxb4 41. Kxg4 Kf7 42. Kf5 Rd5+ 43.
Kf4 Kf6 44. Rxe4 Rxe4+ 45. Rxe4 (45. Kxe4 {indeed, allows white to make a draw}
Re5+ 46. Kd3 Rxe2 47. Kxe2 Ke5 48. Kd3 Kd5 (48... Kf5 49. Kc3 Kg4 50. Kb4 Kxh4
51. d4 Kg5 $11) 49. Kc3 Kc5 50. Kb3 Kd4 51. Kb4 Kd3 52. Kxb5 Kxd2 53. Kc6 Ke3
54. Kd7 Kf4 55. Ke7 Kg4 56. Kf7 $11) 45... Rxd2 46. Kg4 Rd5 (46... Rb2) 47. Rb4
g6 48. Rf4+ Ke6 49. Rf8 Rd1 50. Rb8 Rb1 51. Rb6+ Kd5 52. Kf4 Rf1+ 53. Ke3 Kc4
54. Rxg6 b4 55. h5 b3 56. h6 b2 57. Rb6 Kc3 58. h7 Rh1 59. Rb7 $4 ({Continuing
to attack my king and keeping my passed pawn at check was surely the way to go.
My opponent saw and planned on the defense, but somehow just blundered giving
up the results of his great endgame play.} 59. Rc6+ Kb3 60. Rb6+ Ka2 61. Ra6+
Kb1 62. Ra7) 59... Rh3+ {This check first is essential} (59... Rxh7 $4 60. Rxh7
b1=Q 61. Rc7+ Kb3 62. Rb7+ $11) 60. Kf4 Rxh7 {My opponent resigned, at which
point, realizing the tragedy of his last rook move and the happening of the
game, I considered for a moment to offer him and declare the game a draw. I
also felt like the kid was tough enough to handle and learn from the lesson to
keep his focus until the end. Koustav chose not to defend the R vs Q, which
may be understandable considering the flow of things from the start. However,
as I suggested to him in our game analysis afterwards, this is a very playable
endgame to try and survive.} 0-1[/pgn]
Upon conclusion of the match, which was the 2nd longest running game of the round, it turned out the chief arbiter consulted on the appeal (even though nobody appealed the decision for us to play the game) with the committee consisting of the GMs I was competing with. Certainly, the ruling was that I forfeit the game, despite playing it out. I accepted the result despite the ironic nature of the situation.

Doubleroo Roams Wild

After my mishap, I took a bit of a vacation from “serious chess” and let the creative aspect decide the battle of mind over matter. Inspired by my Aussie friend IM Alex Wohl I got to know at the tournament in Bhopal, I started the practice of “Doubleroo” in Mumbai with good success.
“Knights are the strongest, placed along the edges”
Gareyev-Kulkarni: crushing compensation!
As you may have guessed, the key to classical Doubleroo play is to start off developing the knights via a3 and h3. The major premise for following the strategy is that if you decide to place one of the knights on either K or the Q-side edge of the board (where it’s the strongest, due to its highly unpredictable offensive plans) you must place the other knight on the opposite edge to make sure the board is at balance and doesn’t tip over. ? Now back at round 3 of Delhi Open, filled with the genuine mission for transforming the world of chess for the better, I blasted my dark horses to aggressively take over the flanks. My opponent was sure prepared with utmost precision using Stockfishy opening tree analysis combined with the latest readings from the Himalayan prophets. Even then, the fearless Hamal Manish got mercilessly outplayed by move 13. Diagram from the game: All of this was surely just a warm up for the decisive battle to come. With my break-through opening lines being intensely studied, the opposition surely started to gain some tricks up their sleeves. This where I decided to take my opening game to the next level and unleashed the Royal Doubleroo!!
[pgn][Event "New Delhi"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2017.12.30"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Gareyev"]
[Black "Bhambure"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "A00"]
[Annotator "Gareyev,Timur"]
[PlyCount "115"]
[EventDate "2017.??.??"]
[SourceDate "2011.05.31"]1. a4 d5 2. h4 Nf6 3. b4 $1 {strengthening my opening play with Sokolsky
advance} e5 4. Bb2 Bd6 5. e3 O-O 6. Be2 {potentially aiming for lethal
king-side attack in the good traditions of Mr. Grob, albeit, at times, the threat is
stronger than it's execution. I sure felt my opponent was shaken with fear.}
Re8 7. b5 c6 8. Nh3 (8. g4 $5 {with smashing attack on the kingside. Please
don't reveal this novelty to anyone and DON'T try this explosive idea at home.}
) 8... Qe7 9. c4 a6 10. cxd5 cxd5 11. Na3 $1 {Finally Royal Doubleroo in
action!!} Nbd7 12. Ng5 e4 13. Nc2 Ne5 14. Nd4 Bd7 15. Bc3 Rec8 16. Qb1 (16. g3)
16... Nc4 17. g3 (17. Nh3) 17... Ng4 18. Bxc4 Rxc4 19. bxa6 bxa6 20. Qb7 Bc6 $2
{After some persistent good play, my opponent is finally giving in to Royal
Doubleroo strategic and psychologic pressure. Black is pleading for mercy,
hoping to survive in the endgame.} (20... Rac8 {sacrificing material for
attack was the way to go}) 21. Qxe7 {For the annoyingly persistent skeptics of
this world, yes indeed it took 21 moves for White to finally equalize. Even
more so, I continue to unfold my well-crafted endgame plan.} Bxe7 22. Nxc6 Rxc6
23. Ke2 Bf6 24. Bxf6 Rxf6 25. f3 exf3+ 26. Nxf3 Re8 27. Rac1 (27. Rab1) 27...
h6 (27... d4 28. Nxd4 Rf2+ 29. Ke1 h5 $44) 28. a5 Rd6 (28... d4 $5) 29. Nd4 Ne5
30. Rc5 Rb8 31. Nf5 Rd7 32. Rhc1 {Strengthenning my position before executing
tactically.} Rb2 33. Rxd5 Rxd5 34. Ne7+ Kh7 35. Nxd5 Rb5 36. Nc3 Rxa5 37. d4
Nc4 38. e4 f6 39. Kd3 Nd6 40. Kc2 Nb5 41. Rd1 (41. Nxb5 Rxb5 42. d5 f5 43. Kd3
$18 {d-pawn is unstoppable}) 41... Kg8 42. Nxb5 Rxb5 43. Ra1 Rb6 44. Kc3 Rc6+
45. Kb4 Re6 46. Kc5 Rxe4 47. Rxa6 Re3 48. g4 Kf8 (48... Rc3+ 49. Kd6 Rg3 50. d5
Rxg4 51. h5 Rg5 52. Kc6) 49. Ra8+ Ke7 50. Ra7+ Kf8 51. d5 Re4 (51... Rc3+ 52.
Kd6 Rc4 53. h5 Rxg4 54. Kd7 Rc4 55. d6 Rc5 56. Rc7 Rxh5 57. Rc8+ Kf7 58. Kc6
Rh2 59. d7 Rd2 60. d8=Q Rxd8 61. Rxd8 Ke6 62. Rd5 g5 63. Kc5 h5 64. Kd4 h4 65.
Ke4 h3 66. Ra5 h2 67. Ra6+ Kf7 68. Ra1 $18) 52. d6 Ke8 53. Rxg7 Re1 54. h5 Re2
55. Rh7 f5 56. gxf5 Rf2 57. Kd5 Rxf5+ 58. Ke6 1-0[/pgn]

Endgame Mastery

Right alongside I had my 2600 buddy, Ivan Rozum, the all-time “Soviet School of Chess” graduate, crushing it at endgame practice and theory. Facing the tough Indian “kids” who were resisting with passion, Ivan explored infinite opportunities to apply the strategic and tactical pressure.
[pgn][Event "Delhi Open "]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2018.03.16"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Navalgund, Niranjan"]
[Black "Rozum, Ivan"]
[Result "0-1"]
[Annotator "Gareyev,Timur"]
[SetUp "1"]
[FEN "8/6n1/6k1/5p2/1P2nQP1/P7/5P2/1q3NK1 b - - 0 1"]
[PlyCount "75"]
[EventDate "2018.??.??"]
[SourceDate "2011.05.31"]{[#] As white is about to trade black's last living pawn, the situation starts
to look like a sure draw. However, the game goes on...} 1... Ng5 2. Kg2 N5e6 3.
gxf5+ Nxf5 4. Qg4+ Kf6 5. Ng3 Nfd4 6. Qe4 Qc1 7. Nh5+ Kf7 8. Qh7+ Kf8 9. Qh8+
Ke7 10. Qh7+ Kd6 11. Qe4 Qg5+ 12. Ng3 Nf4+ 13. Kf1 Qb5+ 14. Kg1 Nde6 15. Nf5+
Kd7 16. Ng3 Qa6 17. Qe3 Qa8 18. Ne4 Qg8+ 19. Ng3 Qg4 20. Qd2+ Ke8 21. Qe3 Kf7
22. Qe4 Qd1+ 23. Kh2 Qd2 24. Qe3 Qb2 25. Qa7+ Kg6 26. Qe3 Qh8+ 27. Kg1 Ng5 28.
Qb6+ Nfe6 29. Qe3 (29. f4 $4 Nh3+ 30. Kf1 Qa1+ $19) 29... Qa8 30. Qd3+ Kg7 31.
Qc3+ Kg8 32. Qe3 Nf4 33. f3 $4 {Surely the "merry-go-round festival of
knights", playing on increment affected White's ability to correctly assess
his defensive options. He mistakenly gives up the essential defender.} (33. Kf1
Qg2+ {doesn't do much} 34. Ke1 Nf3+ 35. Kd1 {and the king successfully flees
to the queenside}) 33... Nxf3+ 34. Kf2 Ng5 $1 (34... Ne5 {also keeps White at
struggle}) 35. Qb3+ Kf8 36. Qe3 Qg2+ 37. Ke1 Nf3+ 38. Kd1 Qxg3 {After almost
100 moves of tough battle white had had enough.} 0-1[/pgn]
With two Doubleroo victories under my belt, I decided to go with another royal opening, the King’s Indian. This time, circumstances demanded the most extreme treatment, as I was ready to give up my queen for a couple solid pieces and long-lasting strategic initiative.
[pgn][Event "DELHI OPEN 2018 Category "]
[Site "Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium,"]
[Date "2018.01.12"]
[Round "5.12"]
[White "Dhulipalla, Bala Chandra Prasad"]
[Black "Gareyev, Timur"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "A48"]
[WhiteElo "2313"]
[BlackElo "2605"]
[Annotator "Gareyev,Timur"]
[PlyCount "144"]
[EventDate "2018.01.09"]
[EventRounds "10"]
[EventCountry "IND"]
[SourceDate "2011.05.31"]
[WhiteClock "0:01:45"]
[BlackClock "0:00:35"]1. d4 Nf6 2. Bf4 g6 3. e3 c5 4. c3 Bg7 5. Nf3 O-O 6. Be2 Qb6 7. Nbd2 Qxb2 8.
Nc4 Qxc3+ 9. Kf1 cxd4 (9... Nd5 10. Rc1 Qb4 11. a3 Qb5 12. Nd6 Qb2 13. Rb1 Qxa3
14. Nc4 Qa6 15. Nb6 Qxb6 16. Rxb6 axb6 17. Bxb8 Rxb8) 10. exd4 d5 11. Rc1 Qb4
12. Rb1 Qxb1 13. Qxb1 dxc4 14. Bxc4 Nc6 15. Be3 Bg4 16. h3 Bxf3 17. gxf3 b6 18.
Bb5 Na5 19. Kg2 Rad8 20. Rc1 Nd5 21. Bc6 Nxc6 22. Rxc6 e6 23. Qb3 Bxd4 24. Bg5
Rb8 25. Rd6 b5 26. Rxd5 exd5 27. Qxd5 Bb6 28. Bf6 Rfe8 29. Qd6 Rbc8 30. Qd7 b4
31. h4 Bc5 32. h5 Bf8 33. hxg6 hxg6 34. f4 Bg7 35. Bxg7 Kxg7 36. Qd4+ Kg8 37.
f5 gxf5 38. Qd7 Rcd8 39. Qxf5 Rd6 40. Qc5 Rb6 41. Kf1 Re4 42. Qg5+ Rg6 43. Qd5
Reg4 44. Qa8+ Kg7 45. Qxa7 Rg1+ 46. Ke2 Re6+ 47. Kf3 $6 (47. Kd2 $15) 47...
Rf6+ 48. Ke3 Re1+ 49. Kd3 Rf3+ 50. Kd2 Re4 51. Qc5 f5 52. Qc7+ Kg6 53. Qa7 Ref4
$19 54. Ke1 Rxf2 55. Qb8 Kh5 56. Qe8+ Kg4 57. Qg8+ Kf3 58. Qb3+ Kg2 59. Qg8+
Rg4 60. Qd5+ Kg1 61. Qc5 Re4+ 62. Kd1 Kf1 (62... Ree2 63. Qb6 (63. Qd6 Rd2+)
63... Rxa2 64. Qg6+ Kf1 65. Qf6 Rad2+ 66. Kc1 b3 67. Qa6+ Rfe2 $19) 63. Qb5+
Kg2 (63... Ree2 64. Qd3 Kg1 65. Qg3+ Rg2 66. Qh4 Ref2 67. Qd4 Kh1 68. Qh4+ Rh2
69. Qc4 Kg1 70. Qd4 Rh1 $19) 64. Qc6 Kg1 65. Qc5 f4 66. Qb6 Kf1 67. Qb5+ Ree2
68. Qc4 f3 69. Qb5 Kg1 70. Qg5+ Rg2 71. Qc5+ Kf1 72. Qc4 Rg1 0-1[/pgn]
The game wrapped up my winning streak and despite using Dragon and Trompovsky in the following games, I was not able to breakthrough. Quite possibly, this was the major point of physical and emotional exhaustion. According to GM Sergei Tiviakov, who joined the series starting in Delhi and stayed relatively close by the playing venue, the players who faced long commutes, despite the refined accommodations were at disadvantage. I agree, and that correlation that can be found in the standings.
[pgn][Event "Delhi"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2017.12.30"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Nithin"]
[Black "Gareyev"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "B76"]
[Annotator "Gareyev,Timur"]
[PlyCount "55"]
[EventDate "2017.??.??"]
[SourceDate "2011.05.31"]1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 g6 6. Be3 Bg7 7. f3 Nc6 8. Qd2
O-O 9. O-O-O d5 10. Qe1 e6 11. h4 h5 (11... Qc7 12. h5 Nxh5 13. g4 Ng3 14. Ndb5
Qb8 15. Rh3 a6 16. Nd4 Nxd4 17. Bxd4 Bxd4 18. Rxd4 Qf4+ (18... Qe5 19. Rd1 d4
20. Ne2 Nxf1 21. Qxf1 f5) 19. Kb1) 12. Be2 e5 13. Nxc6 bxc6 14. exd5 cxd5 15.
Bg5 Be6 (15... d4 16. Ne4 Qb6 17. Nxf6+ Bxf6 18. g4 hxg4 19. fxg4 Bg7 20. h5 e4
21. Bc4 d3 22. c3) 16. Bc4 Qc7 17. Bxf6 dxc4 18. Bxg7 Kxg7 19. g4 hxg4 20. h5
g5 21. fxg4 f6 22. Qe4 Kh8 23. Nd5 Qh7 24. Qg6 (24. Nxf6 Qxe4 25. Nxe4 Bxg4 26.
Rd6 Bf3 27. Re1) 24... Qg7 (24... Rad8 25. Qxh7+ Kxh7 26. Nxf6+ Kg7) 25. Ne3 c3
$5 {this move certainly gave my opponent some worries} 26. Rd6 Qb7 $1 $11 27.
Qh6+ {White must now repeat} Kg8 28. Qg6+ 0-1[/pgn]
Towards the end of the tournament things got a lot easier with just one round every day. We had a chance to get away and enjoy the beautiful gardens in close vicinity to the venue.

Chennai

I truly felt at peace arriving in Chennai, Tamil Nadu for the last competition of the series, however exhausting the load of games, travels, and “tough breathing” conditions at times, I felt blessed to still be alive and fighting for the ultimate victory! A month before then, I started my journey in Norway continuing onto Germany, Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus which certainly gave me the appreciation of warmth and sunshine in India.
Enjoying the snowy landscapes along my Siberian journey
 
My young Uzbek compatriot Bekhzod in Chennai!
As a top seed, I was honored to meet India’s first IM Emanuel Aaron from Tamil Nadu state:
Playing the opening moves at the ceremony
I started the tourney strong with some nice victories and a perfect score after four rounds. Round 1 Game:
[pgn][Event "Chennai"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2017.12.30"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Kumar S"]
[Black "Gareyev Timur"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "C45"]
[Annotator "Gareyev,Timur"]
[PlyCount "92"]
[EventDate "2017.??.??"]
[SourceDate "2011.05.31"]1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 exd4 4. Nxd4 Qf6 5. Be3 (5. Nxc6 dxc6 6. Bd3 h5 7.
Nd2 Bg4 8. f3 Bc5 9. Nb3 Bb6 10. Qe2 Be6 11. c4 Qh4+ 12. g3 Qe7 13. Be3 h4 14.
c5 Bxb3 15. cxb6 axb6) 5... Bc5 6. c3 Nge7 7. Nf5 Nxf5 (7... d6 8. Bxc5 (8. Nd4
) 8... Bxf5 9. Bxd6 (9. Bd4 Nxd4) 9... O-O-O) 8. Bxc5 d6 9. Ba3 Nh4 10. Nd2 Ne5
11. Qe2 Bg4 (11... O-O) 12. Qe3 O-O (12... g5 13. h3 Bd7 14. O-O-O a5 15. g3
Nhg6 16. Be2 b5 17. Rdf1 Nf4) 13. f4 Qh6 14. Qg3 Qxf4 15. Qxf4 Nxg2+ 16. Bxg2
Nd3+ 17. Kf1 Nxf4 18. Bf3 (18. e5 Rfe8 19. Bxb7 (19. exd6) 19... Rab8) 18...
Bxf3 19. Nxf3 Rfe8 20. Re1 Re6 21. Re3 (21. Rg1 Rae8 22. Rg4 Nd3 23. Re3 (23.
Rd1) 23... f5) 21... Rae8 22. Nd2 d5 23. Rg1 (23. Rf3 Ng6) 23... dxe4 24. Rg4
Nd5 25. Reg3 (25. Rexe4 Ne3+) 25... g6 26. Rg5 c6 (26... f5 27. Rxf5 Ne3+ 28.
Rxe3 gxf5) 27. Rxd5 (27. Nc4) (27. c4 e3) 27... cxd5 28. Bc5 f5 29. Ke2 f4 30.
Rg4 (30. Rg5 Re5) 30... b6 31. Bd4 Rf8 32. a4 Rf5 33. b4 h5 34. Rg1 g5 35. h3
Rg6 36. c4 g4 37. hxg4 (37. c5) 37... hxg4 38. c5 (38. cxd5) 38... e3 (38... g3
) 39. Nf1 g3 40. cxb6 (40. Kf3 Re6 41. Rg2) 40... axb6 41. Kf3 Re6 42. Rg2 e2 (
42... Re4) 43. Rxe2 Rxe2 44. Kxe2 f3+ 45. Ke3 g2 46. Kf2 Rf4 0-1[/pgn]
I fought hard in the Dragon in round 5 and unleashed the King’s Gambit in round 6. Unfortunately, both attempts versus highly tactical players went wrong. I was not feeling my Dragon mojo to pull off a miracle and misplayed the King’s Gambit losing two games in a row! I gradually got over the bad day, building my confidence back up one victory at a time. After 3 straight wins in a row I was facing Ivan Rozum, who led the field by a whole point. This was a true shot at glory going for all or nothing in the final round!
[pgn][Event "Chennai"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2018.01.23"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Gareyev"]
[Black "Rozum"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "E11"]
[Annotator "Gareyev,Timur"]
[PlyCount "57"]
[EventDate "2018.??.??"]
[SourceDate "2011.05.31"]1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 Bb4+ 4. Nbd2 O-O 5. a3 Be7 6. e4 d5 7. Bd3 c5 (7...
dxe4 8. Nxe4 Nxe4 9. Bxe4 c5) 8. e5 Nfd7 9. h4 h6 (9... g6 10. h5 cxd4 11. cxd5
Nc5 12. Bxg6 hxg6 13. d6) 10. Bb1 (10. b4 cxd4 11. cxd5 exd5 12. Nb3 Nc6 13.
Bf4 Re8 14. O-O Nf8) 10... Re8 11. Ng5 cxd4 (11... Nf8 12. Qh5 Bxg5 13. hxg5
Qxg5 14. Qh2 f5 15. Nb3 Qg6 16. g4) (11... Nc6 12. Rh3 Nxd4 13. Bh7+ Kf8 14.
Nxf7 Kxf7 15. Qh5+ Kf8 16. Nf3 Nf5 17. Bxf5 exf5 18. e6 Kg8 19. Bxh6 Bf6 20.
Qf7+ Kh8 21. Bg5 Re7 22. Qh5+ Kg8 23. cxd5 Qb6 24. Kf1 Qxb2 25. Re1 Nb6 26.
Bxf6 Qxf6 27. Rg3 Nxd5 (27... Bxe6 28. dxe6 Rxe6 29. Rxe6 Qxe6 30. Ng5 Qh6 31.
Qf7+ Kh8 32. Re3 $18) 28. Ng5 Qh6 (28... g6 29. Ne4 fxe4 30. Rxg6+ Rg7 31. Rxf6
Nxf6 32. Qf5) 29. Qf7+ Rxf7 30. exf7+) 12. f4 (12. Bh7+ Kf8 13. Nxf7 Kxf7 14.
Qh5+ Kf8 15. O-O Bxh4 (15... Nc6 16. cxd5 Ncxe5 17. f4) 16. Nf3) 12... Nc6 (
12... dxc4 13. Nxc4) 13. Qh5 Rf8 14. cxd5 exd5 15. O-O Qe8 16. Ndf3 (16. Bh7+
Kh8 17. Ndf3 Bxg5 18. Nxg5 Nc5 19. f5 (19. b4 Nb3 20. Rb1 (20. f5 Nxe5) 20...
Nxc1 21. Rbxc1) 19... Nxe5 20. f6 Bg4) 16... d3 17. Bxd3 f5 18. Qxe8 Rxe8 19.
Ne6 (19. Nh3 Nc5 20. Bc2 d4 (20... Be6 21. Be3 Ne4) 21. b4) 19... Bc5+ (19...
Ndxe5 $1 20. Nc7 Bc5+ 21. Kh2 Re7) 20. Nxc5 Nxc5 21. Rd1 (21. Bc2 d4 22. b4 d3
23. Bb1 Nb3 24. Ra2 Be6 25. Be3 Red8 26. Rb2 a5) 21... Nxd3 22. Rxd3 Be6 23.
Be3 {I am sure my opponent was quite happy to finally reach safe-looking
grounds. Despite the drawish nature of the opposite color bishop endgames and
limited number of resources for both sides, this endgame is quite unplesant
for black.} Rec8 24. Rc1 Kf7 25. Rdc3 Ke8 26. Kf2 Kd7 27. b4 b6 28. h5 Bf7 $4 {
Having taken a lot of pressure throughout the game, my opponent finally gives
in.} (28... Ne7 29. Nd4 Bf7 (29... Rxc3 30. Rxc3 Rc8 31. Rxc8 Nxc8 32. b5 Ne7
33. Kg3 Ng8 34. Bd2 Ke7 35. Bb4+ Kf7 36. Nc6 Ke8 37. Nxa7 d4 38. Kf2 d3 39. Ke3
$18) 30. g4 $1 fxg4 (30... Rxc3 31. Rxc3 fxg4 32. f5) 31. f5 Bxh5 32. e6+ Kd8
33. Bf4 Rxc3 34. Rxc3 Rc8 35. Rxc8+ Nxc8 36. Be5 $18) 29. e6+ 1-0[/pgn]
As I indeed was able to pull off a big win, we ended up with a nice 5-way “family tie”. Since the prizes are not shared, tiebreaks, however, played important role in the final standings. Aside from direct encounter, Buchholz was used as the main system which measured the number of points the opponents scored. I ended up in 3rd missing 1st place by 0.5 Buchholz point which amounts to less than 1% lead in the tiebreaks! Ivan Rozum, despite his disappointing finish, was able to hold at 2nd, and Chennai local, R.R Laxman, gained 1st. I suppose there is always room for improvement and reaching for greater results. Both physical and intellectual preparation are certainly key. I was able to take advantage of the powerful training experience in India as I won two major international tournaments Doeberl Cup in Australia and JAPFA GM International Tournament in Indonesia in April and May. However good it is to make progress and strive for greater victories, the best part about the journey is certainly getting to know the wonderful personalities in the chess world and every day traveler’s life. You may follow Timur’s games and adventures via his blog & newsletter: http://www.blindfoldking.com/apps/blog/        http://www.blindfoldking.com/

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