NM Sanjay Ghatti Battles French With 2 Qe2!

NM Sanjay Ghatti finished undefeated, with a score of 6-3, at the 2014 US Open, winning three games while drawing six. He tied with GM Alonso Zapata and FM Kazim Gulamali for the honor of being the top scorer from Georgia. For this fine result Sanjay lost eight rating points. More importantly he played my favorite move against the French defense, 2 Qe2! This was one of the few games I was able to follow on Monroi, which had its usual problems. For some reason I find it appropriate USCF uses Monroi in lieu of one of the obviously better methods of broadcasting chess games.
Sanjay’s opponent in this game was an Expert, Jessica Regam, who had upset GM Zapata in the second round. The ratings are taken from the CBDB and must be FIDE, because the ratings shown on the USCF website are considerably higher. The post tournament rating is 2194 for Sanjay and 2145 for Jessica.

Sanjay Ghatti (2024 )vs Jessica Regam (2031)
2014 US Open 7/26/14
1. e4 e6 2. Qe2 c5 3. Nf3 Nc6 4. d3 g6 5. g3 Bg7 6. c3 Nge7 7. Bg2 0-0 8 0-0 d6 9 Nbd2 Qc7 10 a4 a6 11. Nc4 b6 12. Bf4 e5 13. Bd2 h6 14. b4 Bd7 15. a5 bxa5 16. bxa5 Be6 17. Nb6 Rab8 18. c4 Nb4 19. Bxb4 cxb4 20. Rfc1 Bg4 21. Qd2 Bxf3 22. Bxf3 Nc6 23. Nd5 Qa7 24. Qe3 Nd4 25. Rcb1 Qc5 26. Bd1 Rb7 27. Ra4 Nc6 28. Ra2 Rfb8 29. Nb6 Nd4 30. Ra4 Nc6 31. Bg4 Rd8 1/2-1/2

Sanjay’s tenth move appears to be a novelty. Many ninth moves have been tried and all score better than 9…Qc7. This is the oldest game I discovered with this particular variation:

Istvan Bilek (2485) Wolfgan Heidenfeld
Lugano ol (Men) 1968
1. e4 e6 2. Qe2 c5 3. Nf3 Nc6 4. g3 d6 5. Bg2 g6 6. O-O Bg7 7. c3 Nge7 8. d3 O-O 9. Nbd2 Qc7 10. Rd1 b6 11. Nc4 Ba6 12. Bf4 e5 13. Bc1 Rad8 14. a4 d5 15. exd5 Nxd5 16. Nfd2 Rfe8 17. Re1 f5 18. Na3 Na5 19. Nb5 Qb8 20. Nc4 Nxc4 21. dxc4 Nf6 22. a5 Bb7 23. Bxb7 Qxb7 24. axb6 axb6 25. Bg5 Rd7 26. Bxf6 Bxf6 27. Ra7 Qxa7 28. Nxa7 Rxa7 29. Rd1 Re6 30. Rd5 e4 31. Qd1 Be7 32. Rd7 Rxd7 33. Qxd7 Kf7 34. Qd5 h5 35. Kf1 Kf6 36. Ke2 Bf8 37. Qa8 Kf7 38. h3 Be7 39. Qd5 Kf6 40. Qa8 Kf7 41. Qb7 Kf6 42. Qc7 Kf7 43. Kd2 Rd6+ 44. Kc2 Re6 45. Qf4 Kg7 46. Qc7 Kf7 47. Kd1 Rd6+ 48. Kc2 Re6 49. g4 fxg4 50. hxg4 hxg4 51. Qf4+ Kg7 52. Qxg4 Kf7 53. Qh3 Kf6 54. Kd2 Kf7 55. Kc2 Bf8 56. Kb3 Be7 57. Ka4 Bf8 58. Kb5 Be7 59. Ka6 Kf6 60. Kb7 Kf7 61. Kc7 Kf6 62. Qh6 Kf7 63. Qd2 Bf8 64. b4 Be7 65. b5 Bf8 66. Qf4+ Ke8 67. Kc8 Be7 68. Qh2 Kf7 69. Qh7+ Kf6 70. Kc7 Bf8 71. Qh8+ Kf7 72. Qh4 Be7 73. Qh6 Bf8 74. Qf4+ Ke8 75. Kc8 Ke7 76. Qh2 Bg7 77. Qh4+ Ke8 78. Qh3 Ke7 79. Kc7 Be5+ 80. Kb7 Bg7 81. Kc8 Bf8 82. Qh8 Kf7 83. Qh4 Be7 84. Qh7+ Kf8 85. Qh2 Bf6 86. Kd7 Re7+ 87. Kc6 Re6+ 88. Kd5 Re5+ 89. Kd6 Kf7 90. Qh7+ Bg7 91. Qxg7+ Kxg7 92. Kxe5 Kf7 93. Kd5 Kf6 94. Kc6 g5 95. Kxb6 g4 96. Kxc5 e3 97. fxe3 g3 98. b6 g2 99. b7 g1=Q 100. b8=Q Qxe3+ 101. Kb4 Qc1 102. Qd6+ Kg5 103. Qd5+ Kh4 104. c5 Qb2+ 105. Qb3 Qf2 106. Qc4+ Kh3 107. Kb3 Qe3 108. Qd5 Kh2 109. Kc2 Qf2+ 110. Qd2 Kh1 111. c6 Qf5+ 112. Kc1 Qe5 113. Qd1+ Kh2 114. Qf3 Qg5+ 115. Kc2 Qg6+ 116. Kb2 Qd6 117. Kb3 Qc7 118. Kc4 Kg1 119. Qd5 Kh2 120. Qd2+ Kh1 121. Qd1+ Kh2 122. Qd7 Qf4+ 123. Kb3 Qb8+ 124. Kc2 Qg8 125. Qd6+ Kh1 126. Kb2 Qg2+ 127. Kb3 Qg8+ 128. c4 Qg3+ 1/2-1/2

It was a great surprise to find during research that another World Champion, Mikhail Tal, played 2 Qe2. His opponent tried 9…Rb8.

Mikhail Tal (2635)- Heinz Liebert (2445)
C00 Lublin 1974
1. e4 e6 2. Qe2 c5 3. Nf3 Nc6 4. g3 g6 5. Bg2 Bg7 6. O-O Nge7 7. d3 d6 8. c3 O-O 9. Nbd2 Rb8 10. Nb3 e5 11. Nh4 Be6 12. f4 Qd7 13. Be3 Rbe8 14. Rad1 Kh8 15. Nd2 f5 16. a3 b6 17. Ndf3 exf4 18. gxf4 d5 19. e5 d4 20. Bc1 Bb3 21. Rde1 c4 22. dxc4 dxc3 23. bxc3 Na5 24. Nd2 Bc2 25. Rf3 Rc8 26. Rh3 Rfd8 27. Bd5 Qe8 28. Qg2 Ba4 29. Ndf3 Nxc4 30. Be6 Bd7 31. Bxd7 Rxd7 32. Ng5 Rcd8 33. Qe2 Rc8 34. Kf2 Rdc7 35. Rg1 h6 36. Ne6 Rc6 37. Nd4 Rc5 38. Rhg3 Kh7 39. Nxg6 Nxg6 40. Rxg6 Qxg6 41. Rxg6 Kxg6 42. Qd3 Nd6 43. exd6 1-0

Pia Cramling faced former World Champion Vassily Smyslov twice last century in Veterans vs Women tournaments, first trying e5, then h6.
Vassily Smyslov (2540) – Pia Cramling (2510)
C00 Women-Veterans 1995
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. Qe2 Nc6 4. g3 d6 5. Bg2 g6 6. d3 Bg7 7. O-O Nge7 8. c3 O-O 9. Nbd2 e5 10. a3 h6 11. b4 Be6 12. b5 Na5 13. Bb2 f5 14. exf5 gxf5 15. Nh4 d5 16. c4 d4 17. Rab1 Qd7 18. f4 exf4 19. Rbe1 Rf6 20. Rxf4 Re8 21. Bh3 Ref8 22. Ndf3 b6 23. Ne5 Qc7 24. Qh5 Nb7 25. Bc1 Nd6 26. Bg2 Nf7 27. Neg6 Nxg6 28. Nxg6 Re8 29. Rf2 Nd6 30. Nf4 Bf7 31. Rxe8+ Nxe8 32. Qf3 Nd6 33. Re2 Qd7 34. Qa8+ Kh7 35. Qb8 Nxc4 36. dxc4 d3 37. Rf2 Bxc4 38. Bc6 Qe7 39. Qe8 Qxe8 40. Bxe8 Rd6 41. Be3 Bc3 42. Bd2 Bd4 43. Kg2 Bxf2 44. Kxf2 1/2-1/2

Vassily Smyslov (2500)- Pia Cramling (2505)
C00 Cancan Veterans-Women 1998
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. Qe2 Nc6 4. g3 g6 5. Bg2 Bg7 6. O-O Nge7 7. d3 d6 8. c3 O-O 9. Nbd2 h6 10. Rb1 Qc7 11. Rd1 b6 12. Nf1 e5 13. Ne3 Be6 14. b4 cxb4 15. cxb4 b5 16. a3 a5 17. Bd2 axb4 18. axb4 Ra2 19. Qe1 Rfa8 20. Ra1 R8a4 21. Rxa2 Rxa2 22. Ra1 Qa7 23. Rxa2 Qxa2 24. Qc1 Qb3 25. Qc2 Qa3 26. Qc3 Qa2 27. Qc1 Qb3 28. Qc2 Qa3 29. Qc3 Qa4 30. Nc2 d5 31. Nfe1 dxe4 32. dxe4 Nd4 33. Nxd4 exd4 34. Qc1 Bc4 35. Bf1 Qb3 36. Qc2 Qxc2 37. Nxc2 Nc6 38. Ne1 Bf8 39. Nd3 Bxd3 40. Bxd3 Ne5 41. Be2 d3 42. Bd1 Nc4 43. Bc3 Na3 44. Kg2 Nb1 45. Bd4 Bxb4 46. Kf3 Bd2 47. e5 Nc3 48. Bxc3 Bxc3 49. Ke4 d2 50. f4 Kf8 51. g4 Ke7 52. h4 f6 53. exf6+ Kxf6 54. g5+ hxg5 55. fxg5+ Ke6 56. h5 gxh5 57. Bxh5 Kd6 58. Kd3 b4 1/2-1/2

Other games:

Antonio Fernandes (2440) – Joaquim Durao (2225)
Lisbon BNU op 1992
1. e4 e6 2. Qe2 c5 3. Nf3 Nc6 4. g3 g6 5. c3 Bg7 6. d3 Nge7 7. h4 h6 8. Na3 d5 9. Bg2 b6 10. O-O Ba6 11. e5 Rc8 12. Nc2 Nf5 13. Bf4 d4 14. Rad1 O-O 15. Rfe1 Qd7 16. Qd2 Kh7 17. c4 Bb7 18. Re2 Nb8 19. Nce1 Ne7 20. Nh2 Bxg2 21. Nxg2 Qb7 22. Ne1 Nd7 23. Nef3 b5 24. b3 b4 25. Qe1 a5 26. Nd2 Qa6 27. Ne4 Nxe5 28. Bxe5 Bxe5 29. Nxc5 Rxc5 30. Rxe5 Qd6 31. Rxc5 Qxc5 32. Ng4 Qf5 33. Qe2 Nc6 34. f3 h5 35. Nf2 Ne5 36. Kg2 Rg8 37. Nh3 f6 38. Qe4 Qxe4 39. dxe4 Nc6 40. Nf4 Re8 41. Ra1 Kh6 42. a3 g5 43. hxg5+ fxg5 44. Nd3 Rb8 45. axb4 Nxb4 46. Nxb4 Rxb4 47. Rxa5 Rxb3 48. Ra6 Rc3 49. Rxe6+ Kg7 50. Re5 Kg6 51. c5 d3 52. Rd5 g4 53. fxg4 hxg4 54. Kf2 d2 55. Rxd2 Rxc5 56. Ke3 1-0

Leaving no stone unturned, I found the next two games which began with the Sicilian defense before transposing:

Anastasija Polivoda – Maritsa Tsirulnik
UKR-ch sf U14 Girls Kiev 2003
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. d3 Nc6 4. g3 g6 5. Bg2 Bg7 6. Nbd2 Nge7 7. O-O O-O 8. c3 d6 9. Qe2 Qc7 10. h4 a6 11. a4 b6 12. Nh2 Rb8 13. g4 b5 14. axb5 axb5 15. Nb1 b4 16. h5 bxc3 17. Nxc3 Nd4 18. Qd1 Nb3 19. Ra3 Nxc1 20. Qxc1 Nc6 21. h6 Bh8 22. Qd2 Bd7 23. g5 Qb6 24. Rb1 Nd4 25. Ng4 Qd8 26. Qf4 Bc6 27. e5 Bxg2 28. Kxg2 dxe5 29. Nxe5 Qd6 30. Nxg6 Qc6+ 31. Qe4 fxg6 32. Qxc6 Nxc6 33. Na4 Rf5 34. Rc1 Bd4 35. Rc2 Rxg5+ 36. Kf1 Nb4 37. Re2 Rf8 38. Nb6 Rgf5 39. Nc4 Rxf2+ 40. Rxf2 Rxf2+ 41. Ke1 Nc2+ 42. Kd1 Nxa3 0-1

Simon Hiller (1958) – Norbert Soelker (1967)
Verbandsliga Muensterland 0506
Germany 2006
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d3 Nc6 4. g3 g6 5. Bg2 Bg7 6. O-O e6 7. Nbd2 Nge7 8. c3 O-O 9. Qe2 Qc7 10. Re1 a6 11. h4 b5 12. Nf1 Bb7 13. N1h2 Rae8 14. Be3 e5 15. Qd2 Kh8 16. h5 gxh5 17. Bh6 Ng6 18. Nh4 Nxh4 19. gxh4 Rg8 20. Kh1 Re6 21. Bxg7+ Rxg7 22. Bh3 Re8 23. Rg1 Reg8 24. Qh6 Bc8 25. Rxg7 Rxg7 26. Rg1 Rxg1+ 27. Kxg1 Kg8 28. Bxc8 Qxc8 29. Qxd6 c4 30. dxc4 bxc4 31. Qh6 Qb7 32. Nf3 f5 33. Qe6+ Kg7 34. exf5 1-0

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One thought on “NM Sanjay Ghatti Battles French With 2 Qe2!

  1. […] featured the other Georgia to score six points, NM Sanjay Ghatti, in a previous post (https://xpertchesslessons.wordpress.com/2014/08/15/nm-sanjay-ghatti-battles-french-with-2-qe2/). Here is another […]

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