All-American Battle Set for Round Eight of the World Senior
By GM Larry Kaufman   
November 3, 2009
After seven rounds of the World Senior Championship in Condino, Italy (October 27-November 11), I have a respectable score of 5/7, having recovered from a bad patch where I lost to top seed GM Tseshkovsky as Black in round 4 and then losing on time in a difficult position in round 5 after a clock malfunction.  

In my round five game against Malmdin Nils-Ake of Sweden, I played my 39th move as Black. The clock added 30 minutes to each side, which it is supposed to do after move 40. So it just displayed 30 minutes, no indication of seconds. As my position was critical and I had to find a way to stay alive, I gambled on when and if I might be forfeited. When the display showed 29, the arbiter forfeited me. I could have filed a protest based on the faulty clock and the fact that I had no way to tell how much time remained, but I felt that I would most likely lose anyway even if they upheld my protest. It turned out that I wasn't quite as lost as I thought at the time; Rybka thinks I might have reached a pawn down ending with some chances to draw.

So far all five of my wins have been relatively easy, in every case I was winning by move 21. Here is my latest:



GMs Mark Tseitlin and Miso Cebalo share the lead at 6, the latter having defeated Tseshkovsky today. Three GMs (Tseshkovsky, Butnorius, and Chernikov) plus the untitled Bo Jacobsen share third at 5.5.

But I am not the only American still in contention for a prize. New Orleans master Jude Acers shares my score of 5 points, and we are paired against each other tomorrow! I'll have Black.

Here is Acers marathon round seven win against IM Leonid Kernazhitsky.



The other two American masters playing, Eduard Zelkind and IM James Sherwin, both have 4.5. Four rounds to go.

In the women's section WIM Tatyana Fomina leads with 5 out of 6, while a group of four players including top seed GM Nona Gaprindashvili have 4.5. Only three rounds remain in this section, which was shortened from the planned 11 rounds as it was felt that 11 rounds was unnecessary with only 28 players.
 
See Larry's earlier reports on arriving at the World Senior and the early rounds. Also watch the games live including the All-American Acers-Kaufman battle on the official website's live game link.