Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Hastings International Congress 2007

Hastings International Congress 2007 is being heldfrom 28 December till 6 January 2008.The tournaments is taking place at the Horntye Park sports centre, the main event is the ten-round Swiss, the Hastings Masters. 102 players, including 16 grandmasters and 16 international masters is among the participants compete in this year edition.

After two rounds, five players are leading the pack. The leaders are three GMs, one IM, and the other the not so young -59 year old Mel Young (photo above) rated 1954! So far he has beat Pickersgill (2088) and Briscoe (2273) but his real test will come on round 3 when he was paired against the top seed- Malakhatko (2603)! In Gibraltar Chess Festival 2003, Mel Young has hold GM Jim Plaskett for a draw in round 1 and we will see whether he can at least repeat the results this year.

Below are the 1st round shocker when the top seeded Vadim Malakhato were beaten by German -Sebastian Bogner.

Malakhatko,V (2603) - Bogner,S (2383) [D03]
Premier Hastings ENG (1), 28.12.2007

Bogner (photo left) has played well so far and even grab the initiative against the top seed. Here Malakhato instead of playing 40.Qxb7 or 40.Rxe2 to draw the game choose the losing move

40.Qc7 ?? Qe1+ 41.Kh2 exf2 42.Rxf2 Qxf2 43.Rxb7 Probably Malakhato realized here that his opponents can played

43...Qg3+! transposing into a won endgame! 44.Qxg3+ hxg3+ 45.Kxg3 Rd8 46.Rc7 Rxd4 47.Rxc6 Kf7 48.Rc5 Rg4+ 49.Kf3 Rg5 50.Rc6 Rd5 51.Rb6 Kg6 52.Ke4 Re5+ 53.Kf4 Rc5 54.Kf3 Kg5 55.Rb8 Rc3+ 56.Kf2 Rb3 57.g3 b4 58.Rg8+ Kf5 59.Rh8 Ke4 60.Re8+ Kd4 61.Rf8 Rb2+ 62.Ke1 b3 63.Kd1 Rb1+ 64.Kd2 Rg1 0–1

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