Bundesliga: Monopoly Under Threat

The latest season is coming to an end in the strongest European club league. 12-13 March saw two more rounds, and now only two more weekends remain (09-10.04 and 23-24.04). As always, play takes place over a weekend, suiting both professionals and amateurs. 

The 10th and 11th rounds did not produce any surprises. In the main match, «SV Werder Bremen» beat their nearest rivals in the tournament table, «OSG Baden-Baden» – 5:3. The top board games were all drawn, but on boards 6 and 8 the Bremen players won. 

Naiditsch - Smerdon

35.Rxb6?? – The Australian's rook ahd been shadowing the enemy queen for the last five moves, but in mutual time-trouble, Naiditsch loses his attentiveness. 35…Nxe4 36.Bg2 Qg7 37.Rb2 Nc3 – White resigns (0:1)

There are always a few Russian mercenaries. Dmitry Jakovenko is top board for «SK Schwabisch Hall»

There was an unexpected loss for «Hockenheim» against  «Dresden»-у 3,5:4,5. The only winner for Anatoly Karpov's team (although the ex-world champion has not played at all this season) was the Austrian GM: 

Bartels - Balogh

White's position is worse, but Black was in time-trouble. Matthias decided to play on the time factor and... 35.Nxd6 Rxd6 36.c5 Rde6 37.Qb3 Kh7 38.Rad1 Re3 39.Kg1 h5 40.Qxb7 Bxd3 41.Rf3 h4 42.Rxd3 hxg3 – Only now did White realise that he is either mated or (after the exchange of rooks) cannot stop the e-pawn. He had to resign.  (0:1).

The 2015-2016 season is mainly interesting for the fact that, for the first time in many years, there is serious doubt about the monopoly of «OSG Baden-Baden». The favourites are only second in the table, and the best chance of winning the league rests with «SG Solingen». The European Cup winners of 1976 (!) and 1990  are not only two points clear, but also have excellent tiebreak scores, thanks to their results against the teams closest to them. In the absence of their leader Anish Giri, top board was taken by Pentala Harikrishna, whose has scored 7,5 out of 9 without a single loss. In the 2014-2015 season, the team was only sixth, but after making a few "acquisistions", they are ready to restore their former glory.

Here are the 20 best players by individual performance:

Links: 1, 2, 3, 4

Тext: Sergey Kim