Malta Chess Federation

44th Chess Olympiad India with a captain's eye Round 5-7

Sept 10, 2022 by Robert Novak, game analysis by IM Imre Fancsy

Round 5 Yemen:
In the fifth round Malta Men’s team played against Yemen, another strong opponent. They had 2 IMs, 1CM and their elo-rating’s average was 2255. Until this certain game we had 2 wins and 2 loses which was acceptable. First time when David fought on the first board.


On board 1 David equalized after the opening and after white 16. g4?! move black was slightly better till 42..Bxd5 when he gave up the bishop pairs.  Unfortunately, in the really complex endgame David’s international master opponent won the game. 1-0
On board 2 In Colin’s Sicilian Defense: Scheveningen Variation game started with white advantage after the opening, middle game was equal but 30.Kf1? gave a big chance to win the game for black. Colin would have had a small chance with 38. h5 but it was missed. 0-1
On board 3 Duncan kept the balance with black till move 17…. e5 when he wanted to open the position and blow up the center too early.  After this breakthrough white gained clear advantage and correct moves led to white’s victory. 1-0
On board 4 Jack played a solid opening with white (Closed Catalan) and if he keeps the bishop pairs, after 16… fxe6 instead of 17. Bxe4, he could play Qc2 which is a difficult move, he would have big chance to win the game.  There was other chance to win this game with 30. h4! because black cannot do anything against h5 move (30. h4 h5 31. g4! and a pawn will arrive on the h5 square) and loses the rook or c7 pawn unstoppable.  1/2-1/2

Further results can be found here

Round 6 Palestine:

In the sixth round Malta Men’s team opponent was Palestine and it seemed a difficult game but I felt we will manage to win this one somehow. On paper we were better but too many underrated players are playing on the Olympiad. Jake was a little bit sick, so he took another rest day.


On board 1 David played the usual d4, e3 super solid opening, it’s not giving a huge advantage for white but he knows very well what to play in this positions.  In move 24. white missed Bxe6 small combination, after that black position would fall apart and David could win easily. In the later stage of the game David tried everything but black defended perfectly 1/2-1/2
On board 2 Colin had similar game as first round but instead of e3 which is the accurate move e4?! was bad for white. 12..Qe7 black has big disadvantage and cannot castle. My nerves were stretched to the breaking points. In move 31. b5 loses the advantage but 31.c4 would have opened the files to black’s king. 32. Nc5 a losing move so the board flip over in 2 moves. Colin had luck because when his king was walking around d6 square he was everything else but not relaxed for sure.  0-1
On board 3 Duncan’s game was balanced till move 12 when black should play d5 to take over the centre and keep poise. 13.. Nd5 was another mistake what Bh5 could punish 14…Kd8 15. Bxe7 Nxe7 16. Ne4 d6 17. Ng5 and the night will land on e6 or f7 with thunderstorm. After 24. Bg4 a4 was the last chance for a draw but because black missed it Duncan secured the full point easily. 1-0
On board 4 Jack had a quite balanced game with many drawish positions but in the very end he couldn’t find the saving moves and white won. You can read game analysis below 1-0

Further results can be found here.

Round 7 Iraq:

After half way 3 wins – 3 loses, our team was relaxed. We had really good mood during the game days (and rest day’s trip). The temperature was between 35-40 Celsius but feeling over 45 because of 90%+ of humidity. Sometimes I felt I can bite the air. 7th game seemed really difficult against 4 FMs.


On board 1 Jake’s Sicilian defense game started good for white, but f4 small inaccuracy (instead of f3) gave away the advantage. 14th Nb1 move was a one way ticket to the hell. After it white had to put his pieces into worse and worse positions and cannot stop queenside attack  0-1
On board 2 David played Bb4 based on my advice in this opening and equalized easily. Nc6 doesn’t really fit in this situation but 19..Be8 could lead to a drawish position but Ned5 lost the game 1-0
On board 3 In Colin’s game 13.Be3 could give advantage for white instead of Ba3. And he miscalculated the strength of b4 move. After that black penetrated in C file, weakened white’s king and lose of the game could not be avoided.  0-1
On board 4 Jack’s game was simple: white didn’t find any advantage in the game except try to use queen side pawn advantage. This led to a difficult rook endgame where 28..b6 lost the game  1-0

Further results can be found here.


To be continued….

Round 6 Mohamad, Seder 1950 – Jack, Mizzi 1913 1-0

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