The USA beats Iran at the Chess Olympiad

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The Women’s team blank out Venezuela

The USA recorded a narrow 2.5-1.5 win against Iran to revive their title hopes after the painful defeat against India in the 5th round.

It was a welcome return to form for Fabiano Caruana, who was too strong on the white side of the Sicilian Defence for the highly regarded Maghsoodloo Parham on the top board.

The other three remaining games were all drawn, creative play in the game between Levon Aronian and Tabatabaei M. Amin quickly petering out into a draw, while Wesley So got nothing against Idani Pouya’s model Caro-Kann and a draw through repetition of moves was also soon agreed to.

Leinier Dominguez, twice now the decisive factor in USA’s victories, comfortably kept the balance against Perez Danasehvar Bardiya with the back pieces, but no more.

The USA women’s team completely dominated Venezuela from the start of play, in the end finishing with a 4-0 whitewash, and improving to four wins and two losses.

Both Gulrukhbegim Tokhirjonova and Clarissa Yip, board one and three, played the Centre Game, an uncommon choice, and which was clearly pre-game preparation, and their respective opponents, Tilsia Varela and Tairu Rovira simply could not cope with the direct play arising.

On board two, Irina Krush was simply too strong tactically for Aanyd Gabriella Sanchez Otazo, and on board four, Anna Zatonskih quickly won a pawn after achieving a dream position on the black side of the French Defence Advance variation against Vicmary C. Perez Hernandez and soon after converted that advantage to winning a piece and the game.

Complete Round 6 results for the Open competition can be found at

Standings after six rounds of the Open competition can be found at:

Complete Round 5 results for the Women’s competition can be found at

Standings after six rounds of the Women’s competition can be found at:

The USA team, top-seed at the Chess Olympiad in Chennai, India. PHOTO: Stev Bonhage