There was a shift in the lead in the 5th round as Rauf Mamedov from Azerbaijan managed to defeat the previous leader, Robert Hovhannisyan from Armenia. Joining him in the lead is Frenchman Maxime Lagarde who managed a good win with black versus Russian Mikhail Antipov and another Armenian comes to the rescue as Hovhannes Gabuzyan defeats Ivan Saric with black to join the leaders.
Mamedov managed a very nice positional win against Hovhannisyan. Perhaps the key moment was on move 19 when black probably needs to protect the e-pawn with 19…f5. Things seemed to get gradually downhill from there and Mamedov was able to utilize his strong king’s bishop to press home the win.
22.Bd5? turned out to be pretty bad as 22…Bxd5 23.Qxd5 Re5 lets the rook to a5 and black was immediately able to liquidate into a winning pawn endgame
Hovhannes Gabuzyan was determined to join the leaders. His win with black against Ivan Saric can only described as a determined grind!
Some interesting moments from the round included an amazing double blunder/oversight in Yilmas vs Stefansson.
Stefansson just played16…Be4?? and white can just win with 17.Rxd7! After making the move, Stefansson calmly observed the boards around him while Yilmaz also didn’t see the win and after a few minutes played 17.Bd3?
Vahap Sanal had a neat move against NIkolas Lubbe
21.Bd8! and the game lasted only a few more moves.
Young local IM Vignir Vatnar Stefansson held a tough draw with black vs Pier Luigi Basso thanks to a kamikaze rook.
47…Re2+! and stalemate is unavoidable.
Results of the round
One player had to withdraw from the tournament because his Covid test came back positive. ALL players and staff underwent a PCR test after the round today and results will be available tomorrow.
Pairings for the 6th round.