Anna Zatonskih Clinches Decisive Championship
October 12, 2009
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2009 US Women's Champion Anna Zatonskih, Photo Betsy Dynako
Defending champion IM Anna Zatonskih has clinched a very decisive 2009 US Women's Championship (October 3-13). After eight rounds, Anna has an incredible 7.5, two points ahead of the field, and a 2700+ performance rating. Zatonskih won two nice games in a row with Black including a round seven brilliancy against her team-mate, IM Rusudan Goletiani.



In round eight, Anna continued her winning ways against Sabina Foisor, who weakened her own king with the over-aggressive 15.g4. Zatonskih then fought her way to a pawn up endgame and finished Foisor off brilliantly with 56...Be4, reminiscent of Shirov's famous 47...Bh3 against Topalov in 1998. "Not the only win", Anna said, but definitely the prettiest one and good enough to force Sabina to resign.



Meanwhile, the tournament has seen 15 straight decisive games. Some highlights have been Irina Krush's tear in her attempts to secure second place (she won three in a row against Baginskaite, Foisor and Tsagaan), Iryna Zenyuk's combative win over Alisa Melekhina and Yun Fan's victory over Rusudan Goletiani.

Tune into the chess.fm broadcast or the official website tomorrow at 10 AM local/11 AM EST to see if the decisive streak continues. Also check uschesschamps.com for photos, the crosstable, in-depth bulletins and news.