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Ruslan Ponomariov vs Mohamad Al-Modiahki
FIDE World Championship Knockout Tournament (1999), Las Vegas, NV USA, rd 1, Aug-01
Sicilian Defense: Paulsen. Bastrikov Variation Ponomariov Gambit (B48)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
Feb-01-02  bishop: The three pieces that black obtained for the queen was sufficient.He was afraid of the passed a-pawn that was coming and gave a piece back. The more pieces and pawns that were exchanged the better it was for white as that gave the queen its chance to show off on the open board.
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: This win in game 2 of their first round match in the World Championship tournament clinched the match for Ponomariov who was then eliminated by Topalov in the next round. 7..a6 invites sharp complications with 8 Bb6 (a new idea); 6..Nf6 is a quiet alternative. 9..Ra5!? was not played until 2008 but it may be the best continuation. In the last decade Black has had some success with 13..Be5. The plan of bringing the rook to the center with 17..Ra5?! was questionable though it would have worked out great had White played 23 Bxe4..Ne5 24 Bxf5..Rfxf5 25 a5..Be3 26 Rfd1..Rh5 27 h3..Reg5; instead after 23 fxe! White controlled key central squares. Ponomariov was defending well against the Black attack until 29 g3?; the best defence was 29 Bd1..Rf6 30 Qd2..Rhf6 31 Kg1..e5 32 Bb3+..Kh8 33 Qd5..Be6 34 Qb5..Rxh2 35 Bxe6..g3 36 Bh3 winning. Al-Modiahki returned the favor with 30..Rxh2+? missing the winning continuation 30..Rxf1+ 31 Rxf1..Bb8! 32 Rd1..Ba7 33 h3..gxh 34 Bf3..Ne5 35 Rd8+..Kg7.

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