Round 8 – the longest day?

The Bangkok Chess Club Open entered its final stretch this Saturday, with what proved to be an intense afternoon.  The thing is, many chess masters are late sleepers, and therefore reluctant to pin all their hopes on a decisive result at a Sunday morning game that begins at the ungodly hour of 9:00am.  Much better to score big today and make do with a draw tomorrow, if at all possible.  Much better for one’s sleep quality, too.  

This appears to having been the approach of top seed Bernadskiy, who defeated his GM colleague Zhao on board one following a fine positional display to bag a crucial 7th point.  Other important wins were scored on boards 2 and 4 with the white pieces by GMs Mitrabha and Makhnev respectively.  GM norm hopeful Cao suffered a second successive defeat at the hands of Australian IM Morris, who had the looser shirt but the more compact position. 

The first and second prizes for competitors playing under the Thai flag have been all but awarded today, with co-leaders Wisuwat and Prin facing each other at board 31 in a dynamic Open Sicilian.  The young IM outlasted his veteran teammate with the black pieces with a string of sacrifices culminating in unusual material and positional imbalances.  

Meanwhile, uncertainty surrounds the overall ranking.  Three leaders on 6/7 and no less than fifteen pursuers on 5.5 before the start of the round remain in the scrap for the first prize of 100.000 baht.  

As the whale-shaped glass chandeliers of the Open tournament hall were chiming delicately, a tsunami overran board 10 when a glass of water was spilled accidentally, interrupting the live transmission.  Play resumed shortly after on the other side of the hall, with both contestants safe and dry, including FM Sek.  Games, hence with the exception of this particular one, are available at

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