European Individual Chess Championship 2021, Round 5
After 4 rounds, there was for the first time in the event a clear sole leader, the Armenian Robert Hovhannisyan, on 4 out of 4. Thereafter followed twelve players on 3½. Round 5 saw this king of the castle rudely toppled in a rather raggy game, as Azerbaijani Rauf Mamedov built up direct and indirect pressure on Black’s pawn at f7 in such a way that Back’s position suddenly fell apart. Click here to play through the game Rauf Mamedov 1-0 Robert Hovhannisyan.
This left three joint leaders on 4½ out of 5: Hovhannes Gabuzyan (Armenia), Maxime Lagarde (France) and Rauf Mamedov (Azerbaijan). With a further 6 rounds to come (11 in all), things are still relatively open, but the chances of seeing any England players ranking high are lessening round by round.
Round-5 pairings/results of the England contingent were as follows:
Malcolm Pein was “unpaired” (on chess-results website), along with two other players on 2 out of 4 and one on zero. Maybe these players had formally withdrawn.
Click here to play through the game Gawain Jones ½-½ Tor Fredrik Kaasen, which was an interesting attempt to engineer a winning endgame, which nevertheless did not produce a win.