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Report of the Day 1 of Blitz
IMG 8311 On the first day of blitz all the players chose to play in a very aggressive style and draws were the rare guests in the table. After eight rounds of the tournament three well-known masters in blitz Hikaru Nakamura, Levon Aronian and Sergey Karjakin succeeded to get 6 points out of 8 and took the lead in the tournament.  Nakamura has already played against other leaders, so tomorrow one of the most important games will be Aronian – Karjakin (round 13). 

Below we can see how Aronian won one of his games:

jobava - aronian1
1…Rxa2! 2.Nxa2 Rxb3 3.Qa1 (3.Nc3 Qb2x) Qa3+ 4.Kd2 Rb2+ and black is winning.
Vassily Ivanchuk lost the first and the last games, made 5,5 point in between and placed fourth in the table.
In round 7 he won with black against Mamedyarov:
mamedyarov - ivanchuk2
In this position Ivanchuk played 1…b3! The best for White was to choose 2.a3 but position is already better for Black. Mamedyarow took on b3 – 2.axb3 and missed a simple idea - a3! He had to resign because the “a” pawn is promoting.

The current world blitz champion with amazing blitz rating 2923, Alexander Grischuk lost three games in a row at the beginning but managed to “wake up” after unsuccessful start and made 3, 5 out of 5, which in any case makes hard for him to join the fight for medals.

After eight rounds Alexandra Kosteniuk is a sole leader in women section  with 7 wins, as she lost only one game against Koneru in the seventh round. It looks like she has already played against the top-rated opponents; however in blitz everything is possible and we can expect a lot of emotions in last rounds.  Elizabeth Paehtz, Anna Muzychuk and Humpy Koneru share the second place 1,5 points behind of the leader with 5,5 out of 8.  Another surprising result came from former world champion Hou Yifan, who unexpectedly lost three games in a row, same as Alexander Grischuk. Nevertheless she managed to improve her tournament situation and finished the first day with 3,5 out of 8.  
Let’s take a look one the key games of first round:

Kosteniuk-Hou Yifan 3
Kosteniuk – Hou Yifan (round 1)
Last Black`s move was 21…Bg7xc3, unexpectedly Kosteniuk didn’t recapture a piece, instead of that she found an interesting opportunity 22.f6! which gives White very promising chances. The game has continued with: 22…h5 23.Bf3 Bxf6 24.gxf6 Ne5 25.Bxh5! Nh7 26.Be2 1-0.
Photos from the blitz are here.

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