Gabriela Antova vs Alex Leningrad Lenderman

Grandmaster Alex Lenderman

https://ha.chesschest.com/doke-budapest-gambit-gm-lenderman-wasa-da-mutane/

has been playing excellent Chess recently but one would not know it after watching the following game in which Lenderman snatched victory from the jaws of defeat several times against Gabriela Antova,

https://www.schachbund.de/news/jewgenij-schtembuljak-und-polina-schuwalowa-sind-junioren-weltmeister.html

a FIDE Master (FM) from Bulgaria. Because of her sex she is also a “Woman International Master.” The fact that there is a separate rating list for women is an insult to Caissa.

It was a rainy day and after checking out the openings from Charlotte this writer was enthralled to see GM Lenderman play the Leningrad Dutch, which was appropriate since Alex is originally from Leningrad. The game did not begin with the usual 1 d4 f5, but transposed into a Leningrad Dutch when Lenderman decided to play 4…f5. This caused me to think…

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I first began wondering about how the game was being played when Alex moved his King into the corner on move 8. Stockfish and Komodo both show 8…Na6 as best, and moves like 8…a5, or 8…Qc7, or 8…Qe8 have been popular. Maybe it would have been an OK move if the woman had played her Queen to b3 in lieu of c2 on the previous move, but still…8…Kh8 is a weak and vacillating move. It was difficult to see the move 10…Nb4? appear on the screen. It did, though, give the woman a choice of where to place her Lady, and she chose one of the, shall we say, “least best” squares for the Queen, which might have had something to do with the thinking of the GM. I was watching a few other games, and doing other things, but kept returning for more of the Antova and Lenderman show. Keep in mind I was spectating at the FollowChess.com website because there is no analysis. After seeing the woman not take the pawn on f4 but retreat her knight to e2 instead I was tempted to surf on over to ChessBomb.com to learn what Stockfish had to say about the position, but I eschewed temptation and stayed straight with no chaser. This lasted until seeing 19…Nh5? It was at this time the realization struck that the moves being shown on the screen did not appear to be coming from Masters, much less a Grandmaster. Then the realization struck that the game being followed could have been one of the games I played ‘back in the day’ when first learning how to play the Leningrad Dutch. It also caused me to question my concept of Chess as I expected the move 19…fxg3 to be played, just as I had expected the woman to play 19 gxf4. Nevertheless I again refrained from heading over to the Bomb. After seeing the move 20…Kxg7 onscreen I thought possibly there were transmission problems, like those affecting FollowChess.com recently. Don’t get me wrong, I am not complaining, because ‘back in the day’ we had to wait months to obtain the moves that now miraculously and instantly appear after being played. Then the thought occurred that Alex knew what he was doing and wanted to trade Queens and grind her down in an endgame and maybe expected her to give the check on c3 with the Queen, which is exactly what transpired. I expected Alex to block the check with 21…Qf6 and was shocked to see 21…Qe5 appear onscreen. After 22 Nd4 I expected 22…fxg3 and was flummoxed to see Alex had retreated his King by moving it back to h8. When Alex finally played 24…fxg3 it had come too late and he had a ‘lost’ position. After playing 27…Nf6 the GM was BUSTED, Buster.

White to move

And then the fun began…I will not spoil any more of it for you and let you play over the rest of the game for yourself.

Gabriela Antova (BUL) vs Aleksandr Lenderman (USA)
Charlotte Open 2021 round 04

A88 Dutch, Leningrad, main variation with c6

  1. d4 d6 2. Nf3 g6 3. g3 Bg7 4. Bg2 f5 5. O-O Nf6 6. c4 O-O 7. Nc3 c6 8. Qc2 Kh8 9. b3 Na6 10. Bb2 Nb4 11. Qb1 Rb8 12. a3 Na6 13. d5 e5 14. dxe6 Bxe6 15. Qc2 Qe7 16. Rfe1 Nc5 17. Ng5 Bg8 18. e4 f4 19. Ne2 Nh5 20. Bxg7+ Kxg7 21. Qc3+ Qe5 22. Nd4 Kh8 23. Ngf3 Qg7 24. e5 fxg3 25. hxg3 Rbd8 26. Rad1 dxe5 27. Nxe5 Nf6 28. b4 Ncd7 29. Nef3 Ng4 30. Rd2 Nb6 31. c5 Nd5 32. Qc2 a6 33. Rde2 Rd7 34. Re4 Ndf6 35. Ne6 Bxe6 36. Rxe6 Qh6 37. Qc3 Rff7 38. Re8+ Kg7 39. Nh4 Qd2 40. Qxd2 Rxd2 41. R8e2 Rd3 42. Nf3 h6 43. Rd2 Rxa3 44. Nd4 h5 45. Ne6+ Kh6 46. f3 Ne3 47. Nd8 Rh7 48. Rd6 Nfd5 49. Bh3 Nc4 50. Rd7 Rxd7 51. Bxd7 Rxf3 52. Kg2 Rd3 0-1
    https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2021-charlotte-open/04-Antova_Gabriela-Lenderman_Aleksandr
  1. d4 d6 2. Nf3 g6 3. g3 Bg7 4. Bg2 f5 5. O-O Nf6 6. c4 O-O 7. Nc3 c6 (Komodo plays this but Stockfish 011121 @depth 52 plays 7…a5. See former World Chess Champion Anatoly Karpov give a recent lesson below) 8. Qc2 (Stockfish 100221 @depth 33 would play 8 Qb3) 8…Kh8 9. b3 Na6 10. Bb2 (In this position Komodo @depth 23 would play 10…Rb8, a move not contained in the Chessbase Database. Stockfish 14.1 @depth 31 shows 10…Bd7, another move not shown at the CBDB. Stockfish 310720 @depth 33 shows 10…Qc7, yet another move not contained in the CBDB. There are three games having been played with 10…Nc7, one of which is the game below played by David Bronstein, who drew a match with Mikhail Botvinnik,contested during the first year of my life.

Anatoly Karpov (2617) vs David Paravyan (2631)
Event: Smyslov Region Group Cup
Site: Moscow RUS Date: 08/16/2021
Round: 9.5 Score: 1-0
ECO: A80 Dutch
1.d4 f5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.g3 g6 4.Bg2 Bg7 5.O-O O-O 6.c4 d6 7.Nc3 a5 8.Rb1 Na6 9.b3 c6 10.Bb2 Nc7 11.Qd3 Rb8 12.Rfe1 b5 13.Nd2 d5 14.cxb5 cxb5 15.Nf3 f4 16.Rbc1 Bf5 17.Qd1 Bh6 18.gxf4 Bxf4 19.e3 Bd6 20.Ne5 Qe8 21.Ne2 b4 22.Ng3 Be6 23.Re2 Nb5 24.Rec2 Rc8 25.Rxc8 Bxc8 26.Qd3 Bb7 27.Rc2 Ba6 28.Qd1 Qa8 29.Bh3 Bc8 30.Bg2 Bb7 31.Qc1 Na3 32.Bxa3 bxa3 33.Qd2 Bb4 34.Qc1 Bd6 35.Qd2 a4 36.b4 Qa6 37.Bf1 Qb6 38.b5 Kg7 39.Rc1 Rc8 40.Rxc8 Bxc8 41.Qc2 Qb8 42.Qxa4 h5 43.Nc6 Qc7 44.Qa7 Bb7 45.Qa5 Qd7 46.Qb6 h4 47.Ne5 Bxe5 48.dxe5 Ng4 49.e6 Qc8 50.Ne2 Nf6 51.Nd4 Ba8 52.Qa7 Qf8 53.f3 g5 54.Bh3 g4 55.Bxg4 Nxg4 56.fxg4 h3 57.Qc7 Qf6 58.Qf4 Qh4 59.Nf5+ 1-0
https://www.365chess.com/game.php?gid=4300056

Stefan Brzozka vs David Bronstein
Event: Asztalos mem
Site: Miskolc Date: ??/??/1963
Round: 6
ECO: A88 Dutch, Leningrad, main variation with c6
1.c4 f5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.g3 g6 4.Bg2 Bg7 5.O-O O-O 6.d4 d6 7.Nc3 c6 8.Qc2 Kh8 9.b3 Na6 10.Bb2 Nc7 11.Rad1 Bd7 12.e3 Qe8 13.Rfe1 Rd8 14.Rd2 Nh5 15.d5 Qf7 16.dxc6 bxc6 17.Ne2 c5 18.Nf4 Nf6 19.Ng5 Qg8 20.Bc3 Rde8 21.Ba5 Ne6 22.Ngxe6 Bxe6 23.Nxe6 Qxe6 24.Qd3 Ne4 25.Qd5 Qxd5 26.Rxd5 Bc3 27.Bxc3+ Nxc3 28.Rd2 Ne4 29.Rb2 a5 30.f3 Nf6 31.Kf2 Rb8 32.Ke2 Rb6 33.Kd3 e5 34.f4 e4+ 35.Kc3 Kg7 36.Bf1 h5 37.h4 Rfb8 38.Be2 a4 39.Reb1 a3 40.Rd2 Kf7 41.Rbd1 Ke7 42.Rd5 Ne8 43.R1d2 Nc7 44.Bd1 Na6 45.Bc2 Nb4 46.Bb1 Ra6 47.Rd1 Nxd5+ 48.Rxd5 Rxb3+ 49.Kxb3 Rb6+ 50.Kc2 Rb2+ 51.Kc1 Re2 52.Rd1 Rxe3 53.Rg1 Rc3+ 54.Kd2 Rxc4 55.Bc2 d5 56.Rb1 d4 57.Bd1 Rc3 58.Rb3 e3+ 59.Ke2 Rc1 60.Rxa3 c4 61.Ra7+ Kd6 62.Ba4 Rh1 63.Rd7+ Kc5 64.Rc7+ Kb4 65.a3+ Kc3 66.Bb5 Rh2+ 67.Kf1 d3 0-1
https://www.365chess.com/game.php?back=1&gid=2573719&m=21

Liubov Yakir vs Klaara Skegina
Event: URS-chT
Site: Moscow Date: ??/??/1959
Round: ?
ECO: A88 Dutch, Leningrad, main variation with c6
1.d4 f5 2.c4 g6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Nc3 Bg7 5.g3 O-O 6.Bg2 d6 7.O-O c6 8.Qc2 Kh8 9.b3 Na6 10.Bb2 Nh5 11.Rfd1 f4 12.d5 Bf5 13.Qd2 c5 14.Nh4 Bd7 15.Ne4 Qc8 16.Bxg7+ Kxg7 17.Ng5 Nc7 18.Qd3 Qe8 19.Bf3 Nf6 20.gxf4 Bg4 21.Bxg4 Nxg4 22.e3 Nh6 23.Kh1 Nf5 24.Nxf5+ Rxf5 25.Rg1 Qf8 26.Rg3 Qf6 27.Rag1 Rf8 28.Rh3 Rh8 29.Ne4 Qb2 30.Nxd6 Rff8 31.Rxh7+ Rxh7 32.Qxg6+ Kh8 33.Nf7+ Rhxf7 34.Qh6+ 1-0
https://www.365chess.com/game.php?back=1&gid=2547853&m=21

5 Norms Scored at the Charlotte Labor Day Norm Invitational

This was obtained from the Charlotte Chess Center Facebook page:

5 norms scored at the Charlotte Labor Day Norm Invitational!
IM’s Nikolas Theodorou (Greece) and Andrew Hong (USA) earned their 3rd and final GM norms and will be crowned Grandmasters at the next FIDE congress.
IM Christopher Yoo (USA) earned his 2nd GM norm.
FM Robert Shlyakhtenko (USA) earned his 3rd IM norm and will be crowned an IM once he reaches 2400.
NM Sandeep Sethuraman (USA) earned his first IM Norm.

These pictures can also be found at the website. Unfortunately there are no names to go with the pictures. The gentleman with his thumb up and wide grin is the Executive Director and Founder of the CCC, Peter Giannatos.

May be an image of 2 people, people standing and indoor
May be an image of 2 people, people standing and indoor
May be an image of 2 people, people standing and indoor

This next picture is of Christopher Woojin Yoo:

May be an image of 1 person and standing
Christopher Woojin Yoo

In future years when asked to show the game that garnered his third and final GM norm now Grandmaster Andrew Hong can proudly present this win made even more special because it came with the black pieces:

IM 2411 Kassa Korley (DEN) vs IM Andrew Hong 2494 (USA)
Charlotte Labor Day GM B 2021 round 09
E04 Catalan, open, 5.Nf3

  1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3 d5 3. c4 e6 4. g3 dxc4 5. Bg2 Bb4+ 6. Bd2 a5 7. Qc2 Bxd2+ 8. Nbxd2 b5 9. O-O O-O 10. b3 cxb3 11. Nxb3 Bb7 12. Nc5 Bd5 13. e4 Bc4 14. Rfd1 Nc6 15. a4 Nb4 16. Qd2 bxa4 17. Rxa4 Bb5 18. Ra3 Qe7 19. Rda1 Nc6 20. Qc3 Rfb8 21. Nd2 e5 22. Nf3 exd4 23. Nxd4 Nxd4 24. Qxd4 Rd8 25. Qc3 a4 26. e5 Nd5 27. Qd4 c6 28. Nxa4 Nb4 29. Qb2 Nd3 30. Qc3 Nxe5 31. Nc5 Rxa3 32. Qxa3 h5 33. Qe3 Qf6 34. Re1 h4 35. gxh4 Ng6 36. Qg5 Nxh4 37. Qxf6 gxf6 38. Bh1 f5 39. h3 Rd2 40. Nb3 Rd3 41. Re3 Rd1+ 42. Kh2 Rf1 43. Nd4 f4 44. Re8+ Kg7 45. Nxb5 cxb5 46. Re4 Rxf2+ 47. Kg1 Rb2 48. Rxf4 Ng6 49. Rf5 f6 50. Rc5 Nf4 51. h4 b4 52. Be4 Ne2+ 53. Kf2 Nc3+ 54. Kf3 Rf2+ 55. Ke3 Re2+ 56. Kd4 0-1
    https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2021-charlotte-labor-day-gm-b/09-Korley_Kassa-Hong_Andrew

When asked to show the game that brought him the title of Grandmaster Nikolas Theodorou, who came all the way from Greece, must show this “game” and I use the word extremely loosely because it is an insult to Caissa:

GM Mark Paragua 2475 (PHI) vs IM Nikolas Theodorou 2569 (GRE)
Charlotte Labor Day GM B 2021 round 09
E60 King’s Indian, 3.Nf3

  1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nf3 Bg7 4. g3 O-O 5. Bg2 d6 6. O-O Nc6 ½-½
    https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2021-charlotte-labor-day-gm-b/09-Paragua_Mark-Theodorou_Nikolas

Christopher Yoo needed a draw for his second GM norm and got it with this “gift”:

Christopher Woojin Yoo 2466 (USA) vs Irakli Beradze 2479 (GEO)
Charlotte Labor Day GM A 2021 round 09
E18 Queen’s Indian, old main line, 7.Nc3

  1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 b6 4. g3 Bb7 5. Bg2 Be7 6. O-O O-O 7. Nc3 Ne4 8. Bd2 Nxd2 9. Nxd2 Bxg2 10. Kxg2 d5 11. e3 c6 12. Rc1 Nd7 13. Qa4 ½-½
    https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2021-charlotte-labor-day-gm-a/09-Yoo_Christopher_Woojin-Beradze_Irakli 12…Nd7 was not a good move. I can see it; you can see it; and so can the programs at ChessBomb and Chess24. The Stockfish program at the latter shows white up a pawn. Maybe the Grandmaster thought it was time to “make his move” and offer a draw to the kid while he held the upper hand, which is exactly what he did. The boy had no reason to play on, and obviously the pusillanimous Grandmaster has no pride. There was a time in Chess when the GM title was so exclusive that Grandmasters wanted to keep it that way and made an aspirant “earn it.” Chess has come a long way, “Bay Bee.”

In the IM D section FM Robert Shyakhtenko earned an IM norm and will become an International Master if he ever attains a rating of 2400. Say what? I don’t know about you but it seems one should either earn the norm or not. What is this with the waiting? Is that weird, or what? If you play in a tournament and meet the norm requirement you have not met the requirement if your rating does not meet the minimum rating required, or am I missing something?

FM Robert Shlyakhtenko 2313 (USA) vs Shelev Oberoi 2175 (USA)
Charlotte Labor Day IM D 2021 round 09
E70 King’s Indian, Kramer system

  1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 d6 5. Nge2 O-O 6. Ng3 a6 7. Be2 h5 8. O-O c5 9. d5 h4 10. Nh1 h3 11. g4 e6 12. a4 exd5 13. cxd5 Nbd7 14. Ng3 Nh7 15. f4 Bd4+ 16. Kh1 Qh4 17. Bf3 Qe7 18. Qe2 Re8 19. Be3 Bg7 20. Rf2 Rb8 21. g5 Bd4 22. Rd1 Bxe3 23. Qxe3 b5 24. axb5 axb5 25. Bg4 b4 26. Nb1 Nb6 27. Qf3 Bd7 28. Rg1 Ra8 29. Bxd7 Nxd7 30. Nd2 Nb6 31. f5 c4 32. f6 Qe5 33. Nf5 gxf5 34. Qh5 Kh8 35. Qxf7 Rg8 36. g6 Rxg6 37. Qxg6 Qxf6 38. Qxf6+ Nxf6 39. Rxf5 Rf8 40. Rc1 Kg7 41. Nxc4 Nxc4 42. Rxc4 Ra8 43. Kg1 Kg6 44. Rf3 Ng4 45. Rxh3 Ra4 46. Rg3 Kh5 47. Rc8 1-0
    https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2021-charlotte-labor-day-im-d/09-Shlyakhtenko_Robert-Oberoi_Shelev

I was unfamiliar with the “Kramer system”

https://external-content.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=https%3A%2F%2Fi1.wp.com%2Fdevsari.com%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2020%2F04%2FSeinfeld-Kramer-scaled-e1586858928921.jpg%3Ffit%3D1360%252C792%26ssl%3D1&f=1&nofb=1
Kramer

but did find one game, only one, in which 7…h5 was previously played:

Dragan Kosic (2528) vs Dejan Antic (2479)
Event: YUG-ch
Site: Belgrade Date: ??/??/1999
Round: 4
ECO: E70 King’s Indian, Kramer system
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.Nge2 O-O 6.Ng3 a6 7.Be2 h5 8.Bg5 Nbd7 9.Qd2 c6 10.O-O b5 11.cxb5 axb5 12.b4 Nb6 13.Rfc1 Be6 14.Bh6 h4 15.Nf1 Bc4 16.Bxg7 Kxg7 17.Ne3 Bxe2 18.Qxe2 Qd7 19.Rc2 ½-½
https://www.365chess.com/game.php?back=1&gid=800573&m=15

Sandeep Sethuraman won five games and drew four to win the IM C section by 1 1/2 points. He needed to win to garner his first norm on the way to the International Master title and did just that, after the following battle in which it was anyone’s game for the taking until the lady played the natural looking, but lame, 31st move, after which she was pounded into submission like a punch drunk fighter and went down like rot gut whiskey, hard.

FM Gabriela Antova 2313 (BUL) vs Sandeep Sethuraman 2286 (USA)
Charlotte Labor Day IM C 2021 round 09
D37 Queen’s Gambit Declined, 4.Nf3

  1. d4 d5 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. Nc3 dxc4 5. e4 b5 6. e5 Nd5 7. Nxb5 Nb6 8. Be2 Nc6 9. O-O Be7 10. Qd2 O-O 11. Qf4 Nb4 12. Qg3 Kh8 13. Rd1 Qd7 14. Nc3 Ba6 15. Bg5 h6 16. Bxe7 Qxe7 17. Ne4 Na4 18. Rd2 Nd5 19. Rc2 Nb4 20. Rd2 Nd5 21. Rc2 Rab8 22. Bxc4 Bxc4 23. Rxc4 Nxb2 24. Rc2 Nd3 25. Nfd2 N3f4 26. Qf3 Qb4 27. Nb3 a5 28. Rd1 Qa3 29. Qg4 Rfd8 30. g3 a4 31. Nbd2 Qd3 32. Rc4 Ne2+ 33. Kg2 Nec3 34. Rc1 Nxa2 35. R1c2 Nab4 36. Rc1 a3 37. Nf3 a2 38. Ne1 Qxc4 0-1
    https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2021-charlotte-labor-day-im-c/09-Antova_Gabriela-Sethuraman_Sandeep