The sixth round at the Thessaloniki Chess Grand Prix 2013 witnessed Vassily Ivanchuk self-destructing yet again before Ruslan Ponomariov. The match started as French defence and the commentators were hoping that this was a signal of Ivanchuk’s desire to play for a win. White responded with a Tarrasch setup. Ponomariov kept his options open, with possibility to play on either of the flanks. Ivanchuk underestimated white’s flexibility and carelessly castled long. White immediately sprung into action and only three moves later the game was over. Black is losing a pawn and the King remains under constant attack. Ivanchuk apologized to Ponomariov – “I am sorry that I played this bad,” and then resigned. Ponomariov said that after five draws in a row he wanted to play for a win. On question about opponent’s form, Ponomariov said that it would have been easier for Ivanchuk if this was a knockout event where “…You lose and you go home, but here you have to stay until the end and suffer.” About the World Chess Championship Match 2013 in Chennai, Ponomariov said, “Everyone is claiming that Carlsen is clear favorite to win the WCC match, but as you can see he also loses some games. Besides, the match is being held in India, so I don’t think everything is so clear. Having been World Champion at the age of 18, I am always rooting for younger players, so I am Carlsen’s fan in this match.” Read a report on the round at Chess Blog.

Ponomariov, Ruslan (2742) – Ivanchuk, Vassily (2755)

Result: 1-0
Site: Thessaloniki
Date: 2013.05.28
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