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Round 3: three decisive games
 MG 4746

Maxime Vachier-Lagrave kept his half point lead in round 3 of the FIDE Grand Prix in Tashkent. He managed to hold a draw with Black against Teimour Radjabov after long defence. Sergey Karjakin outplayed his compatriot Dmitry Jakovenko and shares the second place with Hikaru Nakamura and Dmitry Andreikin, who drew with Anish Giri and Fabiano Caruana respectively. Rustam Kasimdzhanov sacrificed a pawn in the opening but lost the thread of the game in a complicated position against Baadur Jobava.  Shakhriyar Mamedyarov profited from a mistake in the endgame by Boris Gelfand after 6 hours of play.

Kasimdzhanov, Rustam 0-1 Jobava, Baadur

Jobava repeated a very provocative line with g6 in French Defence, which he has already used against Karjakin and Solak. Rustam went for the most principal continuation with a pawn sacrifice and got a decent compensation. Black's pieces had problems with development and former world champion had to play very precisely in order to use this temporal disadvantage. By playing 17.N3e4 White could maintain the pressure but around this moment Rustam lost his track.


24.Ba7 turned out to be a decisive mistake as Rustam missed a very strong reply of his opponent 27.Qd7.

 MG 4721

Caruana, Fabiano 1/2–1/2 Andreikin, Dmitry

In one of the main lines of Berlin Defence Caruana didn't pose any serious problems for Black. Dmitry managed to equalize quite easily and didn't give chance to create any serious threat.

 MG 4750

Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar 1– 0 Gelfand, Boris

Players repeated the same line in King's Indian with e3 from the Baku Grand Prix, which was transported after c5 d5 into Benoni without one tempo for White.

Shakhriyar played 16.Rae1!?! and after Qb6 admitted his mistake and came back 17.Ra1! This maneuver not only surprised the chess audience but according to Shakhriyar turned to be decisive for the game as at this point both players spent half an hour each and Boris had to play last moves before the first time control under the time pressure.


Boris passed by an opportunity to make a draw after the force line starting with 22...Nd3 and after 22...Kh7 Shakhriyar got chances in the endgame. Nevertheless, nicely using tactical tricks Black managed to convert the game in a drawish endgame but on move 40 Boris let his opponent to sacrifice an exchange and later on didn't find a precise way to make a draw.


Rg2? Turned to be a decisive mistake. After Kd6 Black holds a draw.


Radjabov, Teimour 1/2-1/2 Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime

A very sharp line in Najdorf variation, deeply analized by both players happened in the game. Maxime went for the endgame which turned to be quite dangerous for Black, than it seems. Only deep analize can show if White can significantly improve his play but draw still looks like the most logical result.


Nakamura, Hikaru 1/2-1/2 Giri, Anish

Nakamura chose a quiet and well-known line in Nimzo Indian with 4. Qc2 and the ending appeared right from the opening. Hikaru pushed for a win during the whole game and was looking for a chance to create a second weakness on the King's side at the right moment. With amazingly patient and accurate play Anish hold a draw in this complex position.


Karjakin, Sergey 1-0 Jakovenko, Dmitry

Sergey Karjakin was a bit surprised by Jakovenko's move g6 in the opening but reacted well and got slight edge after the opening.Sergey decided to transfer the game into the ending and was in time to create some unpleasant threats almost forcing his opponent to sacrifice a pawn. Dmitry still had quite good drawing chances but completely misplayed arising endgame.

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