Dortmund 2012, Round 4: Five Draws
Monday, July 16, 2012 at 5:02PM
Dennis Monokroussos in Dortmund 2012, Dortmund 2012

Today's fourth round at Dortmund wasn't as interesting as its predecessors, but although all five games were drawn there were some interesting moments. The game of the day, by a large margin, was the wild Winawer between Peter Leko and Fabiano Caruana. Leko was doing a beautiful job of negotiating the complications, but missed his chance on move 31: 31.Ba6+ Kd8 32.Qf1 would have won on the spot. Black cannot avoid a trade of queens, after which the loose status of his remaining pieces will cost him the game. His best try is 32...Qxf1 33.Bxf1 Rxh2, but after 34.Rxf3 Bxf3 35.Kxf3 Rxc2 36.f5 Black's rook will be no match for White's bishops. After 31.Rg1, most of Leko's advantage had dissipated, and by the time control the position was completely drawn.

In the leaders' games, Vladimir Kramnik's plan of pushing the h-pawn gave him good counterplay in a sharp Petroff, and his game with Arkadij Naiditsch soon ended in a perpetual. Ruslan Ponomariov was unable to seize the sole lead, though he did manage to press Sergey Karjakin in a Berlin with 5.Re1. The line has an insipid reputation, but Ponomariov showed that White can obtain a little something with it. Karjakin defended very patiently, though, and held the draw.

The other two games were less interesting. Jan Gustafsson-Mateusz Bartel followed one of the Gelfand-Anand games for a while, and as in the earlier game Black held the balance without much trouble. Daniel Fridman-Georg Meier was likewise a quick exchange-fest that was drawn without either player experiencing much trouble.

Standings After Round 5:

1-2. Ponomariov, Kramnik 3
3-4. Leko, Karjakin 2.5
5-7. Naiditsch, Caruana, Meier 2
8. Fridman 1.5
9. Gustafsson 1
10. Bartel .5

Round 6 Pairings:

Caruana - Gustafsson
Meier - Leko
Karjakin - Fridman
Kramnik - Ponomariov (battle of the leaders)
Bartel - Naiditsch

Article originally appeared on The Chess Mind (http://www.thechessmind.net/).
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