Nakamura Does the Hat-Trick

Время публикации: 13.04.2015 17:38 | Последнее обновление: 13.04.2015 20:03

But the year's most important tournament lies ahead

As Garry Kasparov predicted during today's final round of the Us Championship, Hikaru Nakamura hung onto the lead. Although at one moment it looked as though the winner might not be determined until a later tie-break - his closest rival Ray Robson quickly seized the initiative as Black against Timour Gareev, whilst Nakamura's position against Onischuk was close to a draw, despite White's extra pawn. If these two games had ended with their "logical" results, Robson would have caught Nakamura. 

But an oversight by Onischuk at move 27 resolved all doubts. 


27...Nxf2? After 27...Rb6 28.Rxd3 Rxc6 29.b5 Rb6 the position is "an obvious draw" (Nakamura) .
28.Nd4 Nh3+ Here and on the following move, 28...Rd2 would be met by 29.Rd8+! (this small trick is probably what Onischuk missed) Kg7 30.Ne6+ fxe6 31.Rxd2.
29.Kh1 Nf2+ 30.Kg2 Nd1+ 31.Nxe2, and with a smile, Alexander shook the champion's hand. 1-0

Taken from

At the end of the tournament, despite the scoretable, Nakamura was not wholly satisfied with his play. In particular, as he admitted himself on the official site, failing to win against Gata Kamsky in round 3 spoilt his mood. "Admittedly, today I scored half a point more than I should have," he added. Kasparov said such self-criticism was the mark of a great champion.

In this Tweet, Mig Greengard pointed out that this is Nakamura's fourth championship, with this photo being done after his first win in 2005, when he was just 16. 

But Nakamura has not just won the US Championship. This is already his third tournamennt win this year, out of the three he has played in. Previously he won in Gibraltar and Zurich, and this hat-trick is no less significant than Magnus Carlsen's sole win in Wik aan Zee. So far, Nakamura and Carlsen have not met head to head this year, and will not do so in the next super-tournament, in Shamir, in which the world champion is playing, but not the US champion. 

In his calendar, Nakamura singled out as the priority the final stage of the FIDE Grand Prix in Khanty-Mansysk in May. "Undoubtedly, this is a much more important tournament than any other this year", he emphasised. "I hope to keep my form into this event. We will see." 

[Event "ch-USA 2015"] [Site "St Louis USA"] [Date "2015.04.12"] [Round "11.1"] [White "Nakamura, Hikaru"] [Black "Onischuk, Alexander"] [Result "1-0"] [WhiteElo "2798"] [BlackElo "2665"] [ECO "C44"] [Opening "Scotch gambit"] [Variation "Dubois-Reti defence"] [EventDate "2015.04.01"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 exd4 4. Bc4 Nf6 5. e5 d5 6. Bb5 Ne4 7. Nxd4 Bc5 8. Be3 O-O 9. Nxc6 bxc6 10. Bxc5 Nxc5 11. Bxc6 Rb8 12. O-O Rxb2 13. Qxd5 Qxd5 14. Bxd5 Rxc2 15. Na3 Re2 16. Rac1 Nd3 17. Rxc7 Be6 18. Bb3 a5 19. Ra7 Bxb3 20. axb3 Rxe5 21. Nc4 Rb5 22. Rb1 Nc5 23. Nxa5 Re8 24. g3 g6 25. b4 Nd3 26. Nc6 Re2 27. Rd7 Nxf2 28. Nd4 Nh3+ 29. Kh1 Nf2+ 30. Kg2 Nd1+ 31. Nxe2 1-0 [Event "ch-USA 2015"] [Site "St Louis USA"] [Date "2015.04.12"] [Round "11.2"] [White "Gareev, Timur"] [Black "Robson, Ray"] [Result "0-1"] [WhiteElo "2604"] [BlackElo "2656"] [ECO "D01"] [Opening "Richter-Veresov attack"] [EventDate "2015.04.01"] 1. d4 Nf6 2. Nc3 d5 3. Bg5 c5 4. Bxf6 gxf6 5. e4 dxe4 6. dxc5 Qa5 7. Bb5+ Bd7 8. a4 a6 9. Ra3 Nc6 10. Ne2 e6 11. b4 Qxb4 12. Rb3 Qa5 13. O-O axb5 14. Nxe4 Be7 15. axb5 Ne5 16. N2c3 Rc8 17. Qd4 Qc7 18. c6 bxc6 19. b6 c5 20. Nxf6+ Bxf6 21. Qf4 Qd8 22. Ne4 Ng6 23. Qf3 Be5 24. Rd1 Qe7 25. b7 Rb8 26. Rb6 O-O 27. g3 f5 28. Ng5 Bc7 29. Rxd7 Qxd7 30. Rxe6 Bd8 31. Qb3 Kh8 32. Qc3+ Qd4 33. Nf7+ 0-1 [Event "ch-USA 2015"] [Site "St Louis USA"] [Date "2015.04.12"] [Round "11.3"] [White "So, Wesley"] [Black "Troff, Kayden W"] [Result "1-0"] [WhiteElo "2788"] [BlackElo "2532"] [ECO "A15"] [Opening "English opening"] [EventDate "2015.04.01"] 1. Nf3 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 d5 4. cxd5 Nxd5 5. Qb3 Nb6 6. d4 Bg7 7. Bf4 Be6 8. Qa3 c5 9. Qxc5 Nc6 10. e3 Rc8 11. Qa3 Nc4 12. Bxc4 Bxc4 13. d5 Qa5 14. Qxa5 Nxa5 15. Be5 Bxe5 16. Nxe5 f6 17. Nf3 b5 18. b4 Nb7 19. Nd4 Nd6 20. Kd2 h5 21. e4 Kf7 22. f3 h4 23. a4 bxa4 24. Nxa4 Rh5 25. Nc5 a5 26. Rxa5 Bxd5 27. Ra7 Bc6 28. Ke3 Be8 29. Rc1 Rb8 30. Nd3 Rg5 31. Rc2 Bb5 32. Rcc7 Nc8 33. Ra2 Nd6 34. f4 Rh5 35. Nc5 Ne8 36. Rb7 Rxb7 37. Nxb7 Bf1 38. Nd8+ Kg8 39. N8c6 e5 40. fxe5 fxe5 41. Nf3 Nd6 42. Ncxe5 Kg7 43. Ra7+ Kf6 44. Ng4+ 1-0

Second place went to Ray Robson, with Wesley So third, the latter winning his last two games after the round nine incident.
All the materials on the U.S. championship

Title screenshot taken from


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