Because that line perfectly describes my feeling after the end of the first leg of the Chess Grand Prix 2017… First leg in which 3 out of every 4 games ended in a draw (Source: Chess Base article), and out of those draws, the majority was rather boring, short and lifeless.
GRISCHUK WINS AND JOINS THE LEADERS WHILE THE UNLIMITED DRAWS CONTINUE
By now there is no doubt that my sports betting career is definitely over even before it began.
Because even the slightest hope of avoiding infinite draws in the later rounds of Sharjah Grand Prix 2017 dissappeared with the round 8.
Once again, there were only two out of nine decisive games. The first winner was, surprisingly, by his own admission, “out-of-form“Pavel Eljanov, who won against an even more “out-of-form” Jon Ludvig Hammer with the Black pieces.
The other hero responsible for at least some entertainment for chess spectators is Alexander Grischuk. So far he hasn’t been under the spotlight in this tournament, but he has played a rather solid chess, and today he managed to outplay the ever-strong Mamedyarov.
LI CHAO B OUTPLAYS ELJANOV, SALEM WINS AGAINST RIAZANTSEV
There is nothing worse then being out of form in a chess super tournament. After Sharjah Grand Prix 2017 – Round 7, Pavel Eljanov and Alexander Riazantsev are probably very well aware of that fact, as they both changed their evaluation of the tournament from bad to terrible with the round 7 losses.
Both games were very attractive for the winning side. Salem A.R. Saleh finally improved his tournament somewhat by outplaying his opponent in a sharp advance Caro Kann. A timely 15 f6! won an exchange for White, and although the position wasn’t very clear afterwards, Black missed his way in the complications, and Salem scored an attractive victory.
GRISCHUK SURVIVES, NEPO WINS A BRILLIANCY, RAPPORT ALSO WINS
Round six of the Sharjah Grand Prix 2017, played after a free day, still hasn’t changed the ongoing trend of a great number of quick draws. In the sixth round there were only two decisive games.
However, out of the 5 draws, the one between Nakamura and Grischuk really stands apart. Because at one point in the game, Nakamura had 100 minutes (!!) on the clock and the Grischuk was down playing on increment.
Considering that the position was highly tactical and complicated, it seemed impossible to Grischuk to navigate and find the best moves.
However, they don’t call him “time trouble junkie” for no reason, as he managed to defend excellently, even with the time issues. Finally the game ended in a draw, although there must have been at least one point where Nakamura could have extricate more and play for the win.
In a popular line of the Italian opening, Hammer played the uncommon 8… Kh8, which had some logic behind it, but turned out to be not the best against a continuation 10 Na3!? chosen by Adams.
In the resulting middlegame White had the slight advantage, which transformed in slightly bigger advantage when everything apart from rooks and one minor piece was exchanged. Black faced a hard (if possible) defensive task, but Adams convincingly exploited his chances and opponent’s certainty and went on to score an important win.