Five of the six games in round 3 of the FIDE Grand Prix in Thessaloniki were drawn, and of the five four of them were logical; that is, neither side ever had a serious advantage. Kamsky-Grischuk was another story, as Kamsky had a huge time advantage and an outright win in his grasp with 27.Nxf7! Nxf7 28.Nxg6. White's attack is too strong, and Black has loose material on h5, f8 and e7. Kamsky waited one more move before firing away with his attack, but 29...Qa2+! (perhaps Kamsky had missed this a few moves back?) gave Grischuk just enough to survive. Enough to survive, but not to equalize: Kamsky could have played on with 34.Qh7+ Kf8 35.Qe4 (or likewise two moves later); instead, he took the repetition and called it a day - pretty understandably, taking into account his own vulnerable-looking king and the ridiculous (and loose) bishop on h2. (Note, however, that after 35...Qxh2? White has 36.Rg2 Qh1 37.Nh7+, when Black loses the rook on f6 for nothing [at least nothing but the bishop captured on move 35], as White will otherwise win Black's queen with a discovered attack.)
As for the one decisive game, it was a catastrophe for Ivanchuk. He had a colossal advantage against Dominguez, missing an easy outright win on move 26 with 26.Be5 (he had time, too, but it's one of those moves you either "see" quickly or you don't; more time is unlikely to help), and then a more subtle win on move 31 (31.Nxg7 Rxd6 32.Qe8+ Kh7 33.Nh5! - not too difficult either, if one has time on the clock) and yet a third win the next move (32.Nxg7 followed by 33.Ne8). Even after these errors he was still better, and would have had good winning chances after 37.Nf6+ or especially 37.Nc7. Instead, he uncorked the ridiculous 37.f4??, hanging his knight.
The finish was if anything even more amazing. Back in 2009 the same players had another time scramble. Ivanchuk knocked over some pieces then, and although he was winning at the time control he felt bad about the toppled pieces and offered a draw. In act of remarkable sportsmanship, Dominguez didn't take the knight but went for a perpetual check, to pay Ivanchuk back for the 2009 game, but Ivanchuk's flag fell on the last move of the time control and the arbiters declared the forfeit - even as Dominguez tried to declare the game drawn! Alas...
Round 4 Pairings:
- Grischuk (2) - Bacrot (1)
- Morozevich (2) - Nakamura (.5)
- Caruana (2) - Kasimdzhanov (2)
- Dominguez (1.5) - Svidler (1.5)
- Topalov (1.5) - Ivanchuk (.5)
- Kamsky (2) - Ponomariov (1.5)