Round 5

In the fifth round Groenendijk and Baliakin both achieved an important victory.

Ron Heusdens - Jan Groenendijk 0-2 (2021)
Ron Heusdens - Jan Groenendijk 0-2

33.40-34

In this position white has a huge tempo advantage, and because of that it seems best to avoid a closed classical position.

13-18 34.32-27 18-23! 35.38-32

This is the last chance of white to avoid a classical position using the exchange 35.27-22 23x32 36.38x27. Then the white position does not look pretty, but the huge lead in development compensates for that.

10-14 36.30-25 8-13 37.34-30 13-18 38.43-38 6-11 39.39-34 9-13 40.34-29 23x34 41.30x39 18-23 42.45-40 11-17

diagram 1
diagram 1

43.40-34?

Only with the less obvious 43.39-34! white could still make a draw. Then after 13-18 44.34-30! white doesn't have to fear 23-29? because of the combination 45.25-20 14x45 46.35-30 24x35 47.33x2.

13-18

A big problem for white is now that the normal development 44.34-30? is disrupted by the Ghestem attack 23-29!, which leaves black a winning position.

44.36-31 7-11 45.31-26 11-16 46.34-30?

Here the piece sacrifice 46.26-21 17x26 47.28-22 23-29 48.22x13 29x40 49.35x44 19x8 was the best defense for white. Then black has weaknesses on both wings, which gives white good prospects to make a draw. For example after 50.32-28 12-18 51.44-40 14-19 52.38-32 18-23 53.28-22 the computer is able to calculate into the endgame databases.

23-29 47.26-21 17x26 48.28-22 18-23 49.33-28 12-17 50.22x11 16x7 51.28-22 7-11 52.38-33 29x38 53.32x43 3-8 54.43-38 8-13 55.38-33 15-20!

and white didn't await 56.39-34 11-17 57.22x11 23-28 58.33x22 24-29 59.34x23 19x6.

Casper Remeijer - Alexander Baliakin 0-2 (2021)
Casper Remeijer - Alexander Baliakin 0-2

One of the most beautiful games of the tournament was the one between Remeijer and Baliakin. The black pieces have an almost ideal classical structure, and it is instructive to see how Baliakin uses this to put pressure on the white position.

13-18! 28.42-38 12-17! 29.28-22 17x28 30.33x13 19x8 31.27-22 8-13 32.39-33 14-19 33.47-42 11-17! 34.22x11 6x17

Black doesn't fear the exchange 35.33-29 24x33 36.38x18 13x22 because after 37.42-38 22-27 he will quickly make a breakthrough on the white left wing.

35.33-28 13-18 36.36-31 9-13 37.48-43 17-22 38.28x17 21x12

diagram 3
diagram 2

39.43-39?

This is already the decisive mistake. It was necessary to play 39.31-27 12-17 40.27-21 16x27 41.32x12 18x7 42.43-39 7-11 43.39-33 and white can defend this position.

12-17 40.39-33 3-9!!

This computer-like move is indeed the right way for black to cash out his advantage.

41.33-28 18-22!

A remarkable case of zugzwang. White has only one move, but it allows black to make a king.

42.40-34!? 22x33 43.38x20 23-29! 44.34x3 13-19 45.3x21 16x47 46.31-27 47x15 47.27-22 15-33 48.22-18 33-17!

Not 33-29? because of 49.35-30 29x12 50.30-24 19x30 51.25x34 12x40 52.45x34 W+

49.37-32 17-8! 50.32-27 19-24 51.25-20 24x15 52.35-30

Round 7

In the seventh round there were many decisions, sometimes caused by severe miscalculations.

Ron Heusdens - Alexander Baliakin 0-2 (2021)
Ron Heusdens - Alexander Baliakin 0-2

Instead of 30.43-39 with a very decent position Heusdens played

30.38-33?

after which Baliakin ended the game with a simple combination:

26-31 31.27x36 21-27 32.32x23 13-19 33.24x13 9x49 34.34-29 49-21

Bhiem Ramdien - Henk Grotenhuis ten Harkel 2-0 (2021)
Bhiem Ramdien - Henk Grotenhuis ten Harkel 2-0

18-23(?) 13.28x19 14x23 14.30-24!

Here black needed to stay cool and play 13-18 15.34-30 25x34 16.39x30 10-14! and the attack 17.24-19 is neutralized by 23-28 18.33x13 14x23. But Grotenhuis panicked, and after

23-29? 15.34x23 25-30 16.24-19! 13x24 17.33-28!

it was inevitable that the black piece on 30 got lost.

21-26 18.47-42 26x37 19.41x32 4-9 20.42-37 1-7 21.40-34 7-11 22.34x25 17-22 23.28x17 11x22 24.25-20 24-30

Round 8

Andrew Tjon A Ong - Roel Boomstra 0-2 (2021)
Andrew Tjon A Ong - Roel Boomstra 0-2

24.39-33

In this position the white fork lock is not very effective, due to the absence of black pieces on 11 and 17. So perhaps the most sensible plan for white was to make an exchange with 24.27-21 16x27 25.32x21 here.

14-20 25.43-39 24-30 26.45-40 30-35 27.48-43 4-9 28.33-28 22x33 29.39x28

This exchange doesn't bring white any relief, since his left wing stays immobile. It was probably best to accept a passive position after 28.40-34 7-11 29.50-45 20-25 30.44-40 35x44 31.39x50.

20-24 30.27-22? 18x27 31.31x22 24-29!

With this move Boomstra blocks the white right wing. The black position is practically winning now.

32.43-39 7-11 33.37-31 12-17 34.42-37 8-12 35.31-27 12-18 36.39-33 29-34 37.40x29 23x34 38.44-39 34x43 39.38x49 18-23 40.36-31 23-29 41.33x24 19x30 42.26-21 17x26 43.28-23 30-34 44.22-18 13x22 45.27x18 11-17 46.32-28 16-21 47.49-43 35-40 48.43-38 34-39

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