The four leaders with 6/7 points met on the top two boards today and the result was a draw on both boards.
1 GM Mark Bluvshtein - GM Alexei Shirov 0.5 - 0.5
2 GM Michael Adams - IM Edward Porper 0.5 - 0.5
That gave the ten players tied a half point back a chance to grab a share of the lead and each and every one of the games were decisive.
3 GM Hua Ni - FM Theo Hommeles 0 - 1
4 GM Surya Ganguly - IM Zhe Quan 1 - 0
5 IM Artiom Samsonkin - FM Jonathan Tayar 0 - 1
6 GM Eugene Perelshteyn - GM Anton Kovalyov 1 - 0
7 IM Dmitry Zilberstein - IM Irina Krush. 0 - 1
That leaves 9 players tied for the lead going into the last round! Should be interesting. Here are the pairings for tomorrow:
1 GM Alexei Shirov (6.5) - GM Eugene Perelshteyn (6.5)
2 IM Irina Krush (6.5) - GM Michael Adams (6.5)
3 IM Edward Porper (6.5) - GM Surya Ganguly (6.5)
4 FM Theo Hommeles (6.5) - GM Mark Bluvshtein (6.5)
5 FM Jonathan Tayar (6.5) - GM Xue Zhao (6)
6 FM John C Yoos (6) - FM Eric Hansen (6)
7 Victor Plotkin (6)- GM Hua Ni (5.5)
After my loss yesterday I dropped to board 67 and was paired against Kristof Amudson (1601). I wanted a win really badly so I played the Kings gambit. Neither of us played the opening very well but I emerged with an advantage and eventually won a pawn. I desperately tried to hang on to my extra pawn so that I could win in the endgame and in doing so put both my rooks in passive position and then put my king on a precarious square with mating threats all around. I could not find a way out and had to give up the exchange and soon after he won a couple of pawns and forced a trade of the remaining pieces. End result I lost. I'm going to lose quite a few points this week.