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Zhao Xue escapes from difficult position, concedes first draw in the Nalchik Grand Prix

After the furious start and six victories in a row, GM Zhao Xue drops the first half a point in the Nalchik FIDE Grand Prix.

Despite having white pieces, Zhao run into early trouble after mismanaging the Tarasch opening against Ekatarina Kovalevskaya. But the Rostov nominee rushed to cash in with material advantage and Zhao, although being a pawn down, succeeded to salvage a double Rook endgame.

Kateryna Lahno ended Antoaneta Stefanova’s winning streak and defeated her with the trusted Gruenfeld Indian defence.

Reigning European champion Viktorija Cmilyte won against the out-of-form Alexandra Kosteniuk.

Live games with computer analysis

Kateryna Lahno

Kateryna Lahno

Round 7 results:
GM Zhao Xue 2497 ½ – ½ IM Kovalevskaya Ekaterina 2421
GM Kosintseva Nadezhda 2560 ½ – ½ GM Zhu Chen 2490
GM Stefanova Antoaneta 2528 0 – 1 GM Lahno Kateryna 2554
GM Kosintseva Tatiana 2536 ½ – ½ IM Munguntuul Batkhuyag 2467
WGM Ju Wenjun 2536 ½ – ½ IM Galliamova Alisa 2498
GM Cmilyte Viktorija 2525 1 – 0 GM Kosteniuk Alexandra 2469

Round 7 standings:
1. GM Zhao Xue 2497 CHN – 6½
2. WGM Ju Wenjun 2536 CHN – 4½
3-5. IM Kovalevskaya Ekaterina 2421 RUS, GM Kosintseva Nadezhda 2560 RUS and GM Stefanova Antoaneta 2528 BUL – 4.0
6-8. GM Lahno Kateryna 2554 UKR, GM Cmilyte Viktorija 2525 LTU and GM Kosintseva Tatiana 2536 RUS – 3½
9. GM Zhu Chen 2490 QAT – 3
10. IM Galliamova Alisa 2498 RUS – 2½
11-12. Munguntuul Batkhuyag 2467 MGL and GM Kosteniuk Alexandra 2469 RUS – 1½

Round 8 pairings:
IM Kovalevskaya Ekaterina 2421 – GM Kosteniuk Alexandra 2469
IM Galliamova Alisa 2498 – GM Cmilyte Viktorija 2525
IM Munguntuul Batkhuyag 2467 – WGM Ju Wenjun 2536
GM Lahno Kateryna 2554 – GM Kosintseva Tatiana 2536
GM Zhu Chen 2490 – GM Stefanova Antoaneta 2528
GM Zhao Xue 2497 – GM Kosintseva Nadezhda 2560

Viktorija Cmilyte

Viktorija Cmilyte

Munguntuul Batkhuyag

Munguntuul Batkhuyag

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