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Alexander Shabalov vs Varuzhan Eduardovich Akobian
US Championship 2003 (2003), Seattle, WA USA, rd 9, Jan-18
French Defense: Advance. Lputian Variation (C02)  ·  1-0
ANALYSIS [x]

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Kibitzer's Corner
Jan-20-03
Premium Chessgames Member
  Sneaky: Shabalov has always been one of my favorite GMs. I'm glad he won the US Championship this year, he deserves it.
Jul-08-03  Checkmater7: 45... Rc6? because white can go 46-Qb7+ then king somewhere then 47-Qxc6 winning blacks rook other than that great game by Shabolav.
Sep-02-03  SicilianDragon: What??? 46...Bd7! not 46...Kf8?? (or Kd8)
May-29-04  morphynoman2: An interesting struggle full of fight ... but far from being perfect. White - probably unsoundly - sacrifices TWO pawns, in order to unbalance the game. Eventually White is rewarded for his bravery, Black fails to find the best move a number of times. Then a long ending follows, that was played with great clarity and energy by 'SHABBA.' This is also an interesting game, because it was clearly the game that decided the U.S. Championship. (Shabalov was part of a very large point-group that was tied for first headed into the last round.) The GM chose to fight, while everyone else made quick draws. From "Chess Express"
Jun-21-04  Whitehat1963: White's 31st, 32nd and 35th must have come as a surprise in such quick succession. Excellent game, and exceptional finish.
Jul-08-04  RonB52734: <Sneaky> <I'm glad he won the US Championship this year, he deserves it. > Ditto. He's a good man. I met him at a simul here in town (where he lives, btw!) and he mentioned he wouldn't be going to Libya, for which (among another thing or two) I'm proud of him.
Jul-08-04  RonB52734: My goodness, did I really write that sentence, and with two parentheticals to boot?
Feb-22-05  refutor: a really nice game, in all it's phases, from shabalov
May-04-10
Premium Chessgames Member
  GrahamClayton: A very impressive example of how to break through a Q v R + B "fortress". I liked how Shabalov maximised the position of his King before determining the correct sacrifice required to break open the fortress.
Jun-17-17  Howard: To be honest, it's a bit surprising that no one has yet pointed out that BOTH players got a $5,000 bonus for this game from the tournament organizers for their fighting spirit in this crucial last-round game.
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