GM Alexey Sarana (FIDE, 2668) defeated GM Anton Korobov (UKR, 2658) in Round 9 to take the sole lead in the European Individual Chess Championship 2023 with only two rounds to go.
Alexey Sarana got the upper hand in a dynamic position, which later transposed into a pawn-up endgame for the 26-year-old grandmaster. Korobov fought hard, but Sarana demonstrated a perfect technique and scored a victory to get closer to the EICC-2023 throne.
It was a draw in the clash of generations which was played on the second board between 23-year-old GM Benjamin Gledura (HUN, 2637) (pictured below) and 54-year-old Boris Gelfand (ISR, 2674). Gledura had a slightly better position out of the opening and eventually emerged up a pawn. However, it wasn’t enough to earn a full point, as Gelfand’s active pieces helped him to keep the position in balance.
Sitting on 7 points (each), GMs Anton Korobov (UKR, 2658), Etienne Bacrot (FRA, 2659), Benjamin Gledura (HUN, 2637), Kirill Shevchenko (ROU, 2668), Andrey Esipenko (FIDE, 2680), Valentin Dragnev (AUT, 2561) and David Paravyan (FIDE, 2584) are tied for the second place.
The 10th penultimate round starts tomorrow at 15:00 CEST with the clash between the two youngsters on the top board. Andrey Esipenko will have the white pieces against the new leader Alexey Sarana.
Round 10 top 10 pairings:
1. Esipenko, Andrey (7) – Sarana, Alexey (7½)
2. Shevchenko, Kirill (7) – Gledura, Benjamin (7)
3. Bacrot, Etienne (7) – Paravyan, David (7)
4. Dragnev, Valentin (7) – Korobov, Anton (7)
5. Anton, Guijarro David (6½) – Kadric, Denis (6½)
6. Ivic, Velimir (6½) – Predke, Alexandr (6½)
7. Gelfand, Boris (6½) – Lupulescu, Constantin (6½)
8. Grandelius, Nils (6½) – Azarov, Sergei (6½)
9. Iskandarov, Misratdin (6½) – Santos Latasa, Jaime (6½)
10. Nguyen Thai Dai Van (6½) – Guliyev, Namig (6½)
Live broadcast with commentaries by IM Miodrag Perunovic can be followed through the ECU YouTube channel.
Text and photos: official website
Official website: eicc2023.com/