European Chess Club Cup
The strongest teams in Fuegen were utterly formidable. Indeed, no fewer than 10 of the 20 players in the world rated over 2,700 were in action at one time or another. Nevertheless, it wasn't one of the absolute elite who got the best individual result but a more modest player, albeit a strong grandmaster: the Finnish GM Tomi Nyback, who was playing on fifth board for Werder Bremen.
Nyback's superb 6.5/7 netted him a performance rating of 2,887 - way above the 2,575 he actually is. Here, he blew away Vladimir Malakhov (who was playing for the top seeds Ural Sverdlovsk) in excellent style. I should add that the game came to my attention through Alex Baburin's splendid daily internet paper Chess Today - www.chesstoday.net.
In a complicated opening battle, White worked to prevent the enemy bishop from settling on f5 and Black countered with ...Bg4 and, after 9.Ne5, Be6, which apparently loses a tempo but in fact makes it easier to get in ...c5.
In the diagram, 14...dxc4 15.bxc4 Rc8!? is critical, though after 16.Nf4 Bxc4 17.Bxc4 Nb6 18.Ne6! Rxc4 19.Qxc4 Nxc4 20.Nxd8 Rxd8 21.Bc3 White was a touch better in a game in Denmark in 2001. As played, Nyback got a space advantage and under pressure Malakhov tried the desperate 28...a5? but ran into a crushing exchange sacrifice.
At the end, there's absolutely no defence against the triumphal advance of the connected passed pawns.
Tomi Nyback vs Vladimir Malakhov Fuegen 2006 (round 7) Queen's Gambit Slav
14.exd4 (see diagram)
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