Fascinating games

American Cup, Day 5, Recap: Great matches and a strong novelty

By IM Kostya Kavutskiy
Saint Louis Chess Center Press Release

In the Elimination Bracket, GM Levon Aronian eliminated GM Wesley So in stunning fashion, while GI Stavroula Tsolakidou and WGM Katerina Nemcova were also sent home. Robson – Sevian lasted until the playoffs, which saw Robson emerge victorious after two thrilling matches.

Open field – Elimination parenthesis

Women’s Champ – Elimination Bracket



Caruana’s excellent preparation earned him more than an extra hour on the clock against Dominguez, who needed plenty of time to reach a difficult but tenable final. With rooks and bishops of opposite colors on the board, Caruana had a nice practical advantage, and although Dominguez defended extremely well for a time, he eventually faltered, allowing Caruana to take the full point.

12.g5! was an extremely powerful novelty from Caruana, putting Black under tremendous pressure. | 1-0, 53 shots

GM Fabiano Caruana | Photo courtesy of Saint Louis Chess Club, Bryan Adams


GM Irina Krush also won Game 1 of the Champions Bracket Finals, which turned a small opening strategic advantage into a decisive positional advantage. Lee tried to defend by giving up a pawn and rushing into an endgame, but Krush’s technique was too clean to allow chances.

GM Irina Krush | Photo courtesy of St. Louis Chess Club, Lennart Ootes



While the first game of the match led to a relatively calm draw, Aronian’s play as Black in the second game was nothing short of brilliant, as he allowed So to make a second queen in exchange for two tricks. , So even having an extra room. . But Aronian’s attack was too strong and led to a winning tactical shot.

37…Ke8! was the last move of the game, taming the white king after 38.Qxd4 Rxe1+

Wesley & Levon after the end of their second game. | Photo courtesy of St. Louis Chess Club, Lennart Ootes


The first two quick games of this match were very evenly contested, with neither player able to create substantial winning chances. But in the playoffs, Robson took control, winning the first game as White with a nice middle move tactic. Sevian had chances to fight back in Game 2, but another nice trick from Robson saved the game, kept the draw and won the playoffs.

22.c6! was a killer move, as 22…Bxb3 23.c7 would give White a decisive material advantage. | 1-0, 37 shots


A sharp f3-Nimzo saw Tsolakidou take the initiative early on, with pressure against Black’s kingside. But a nice pawn sacrifice from Tokhirjonova allowed him to turn the tide, leaving White with a very weak structure. The players then entered a round ending that was objectively drawn, but difficult for the Whites from a practical point of view, and another blunder by Tsolakidou allowed Tokhirjonova to win the first game.

In game two, Tsolakidou was unable to generate any real winning chances as Black, and ended up blundering in a queen endgame, allowing Tokhirjonova to capitalize on the error and win Game 2. -0.

WGM Begim Tokhirjonova | Photo courtesy of St. Louis Chess Club, Lennart Ootes


Another tough game saw Abrahamyan win the opener for the Blacks, taking advantage of an error that left Nemcova in a rookie final completely lost. In the second game, Abrahamyan decided to trade queens early on, but Nemcova managed to trade in a very promising endgame knight vs. bishop, with a much better pawn structure for black. However, Abrahamyan was able to find the right moment to create counterplay and activate her bishop, after which Nemcova lost control of the position and ended up losing the game.

WGM Tatev Abrahamian | Photo courtesy of St. Louis Chess Club, Lennart Ootes

Games Championship Bracket (Open)

Game Disposal Support (Open)

Games Championship Table (Women)

Games Elimination (Women)

Day 6 of the 2022 American Cup will take place on Monday, April 24 starting at 12:50 p.m. CT. Don’t miss the live action with top commentators Yasser Seirawan, Cristian Chirila and Alejandro Ramirez on uschesschamps.com and on the Saint Louis Chess Club Youtube and Twitch.tv canals.