Exciting eighth round leaves everything open for an electrifying final round
Tapani Sammalvuo firstname.lastname@example.org
Just like in the fifth round, the first ranked GM Sergey Fedorchuk had the white pieces against the sole leader of the tournament, this time GM Lucas van Foreest. Whereas the fifth round game against Kevlishvili ended favourably for the “top dog”, now he got into real trouble and was lucky to salvage a draw in a difficult ending.
We have learned that GM Gábor Nagy doesn’t like to lose. Today he made already his fourth short draw, but to be fair, his tournament strategy seems to be working fine. GM Bartłomiej Heberla never had chances for an advantage on the white side of a Queen’s Indian Defence. In fact, Black was to be preferred in the final position.
GM Victor Mikhalevski won a nice technical game against IM Mikael Agopov.
IM Vilka Sipilä is known for his games that seem to defy all logic. He chose the Scotch Opening against GM Héðinn Steingrímsson, but it was Black who soon took over and at some point was already two pawns up in an endgame. White was definitely lost, but in the time-trouble Vilka-magic started happening. First, Vilka recovered his lost pawns and then, in a rook ending with equal material, Black got flustered and lost two more. Thanks to this game, Sipilä is now sharing the overall lead in the tournament and leads alone the Nordic Championship.
IM Tarvo Seeman’s English Opening didn’t succeed against GM Robby Kevlishvili. Black took soon over and for most of the game White was in trouble.