I was going to write a quick post about the Australia Day Weekender, but just woke up this minute to absolutely sensation news that IM Zong-Yuan Zhao has defeated American superstar GM Hikaru Nakamura in the Gibraltar Chess Festival tournament.
Gibtelecom Chess Festival 2008
Zhao, Zong Yuan
1. e4 Nf6 2. e5 Nd5 3. d4 d6 4. c4 Nb6 5. exd6 exd6 6. Nc3 Be7 7. Bd3 Nc6 8. Nge2 Bg4 9. h3 Bh5 10. Be3 O-O 11. d5 Ne5 12. b3 Bf6 13. Rc1 Bg5 14. f4 Bh4+ 15. Bf2 Bxe2 16. Bxe2 Bxf2+ 17. Kxf2 Qf6 18. g3 Rae8 19. Re1 Ned7 20. Bf3 Nc5 21. Qd2 a6 22. Kg2 Qf5 23. Re3 Rxe3 24. Qxe3 Qd3 25. Qxd3 Nxd3 26. Rd1 Nc5 27. Re1 Rd8 28. Re7 Ncd7 29. Be2 Kf8 30. Re3 Nb8 31. Bd3 h6 32. g4 a5 33. Nb5 Na6 34. a3 g5 35. Kf3 Nc5 36. Bc2 Na6 37. Bd3 Nc5 38. Bc2 gxf4 39. Kxf4 a4 40. Nxc7 axb3 41. Bxb3 Nbd7 42. Nb5 Ne5 43. Ba2 Ncd3+ 44. Kf5 Nc1
45. Nxd6 Ng6 46. Nxb7 Rb8 47. c5 Rxb7 48. Bc4 Rb2 49. Ke4 Ke7 50. Kd4+ Kd8 51. c6 Nf4 52. d6 Rd2+ 53. Kc5 Ncd3+ 54. Kb6 Rc2 55. Bxf7 1-0
The win puts Zhao on 4 points after fives games. At this time of writing, I don't know how the other Aussies, Ly and Lazarus, are doing. Their games don't seem to be available in the live streams. Also, it looks like FM Manuel Weeks may have pulled out.
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Manuel weeks is listed as the Publicity Manager at Gibraltar 2008. Maybe he found that he couldn't do that job as well as play chess to a high standard.
If he gets his final norm in this tournament, what a nice way to do it! Go Zhao!!!
After draws with the chess legends Beliavsky and Gurevich, Zhao is only half a point away from his final GM norm and the title. And at this stage, Zhao looks to be taking Ian Rogers' mantle as Australia's number one player.
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