Thursday 02 January 1997
After three rounds, the lead is shared by Rozentalis (Latvia) and Hebden (England) on 21/2 points, followed by Conquest (England), Lalic (Croatia), Nunn (England) and Xie (China) 2; Movsessyan (Armenia) 1/2 (one unfinished); Motwani (Scotland) 1/2; Flear (England) 0 (one unfinished); Adams (England) 0.
Here is the game that put an end to Xie Jun's opening sprint. Black's opening play can only be justified if she can prove that the white pawn on f3 is taking away a valuable square from his knight, but this never looked like being the case. When the f-pawn formed the base for a quick g4 and h4 advance, Black's king never looked as though it would be safe on the K-side, which left her facing problems after 10.Qb3. The natural 10...Qb6 leaves Black worse after 11.c5 Qxb3 12.axb3, when b4 and b5 will follow quickly; 10...Qd7 takes away the only good square from the knight on b8, while 10...Qc8 allows Nbd7, but then the queen gets in the way of Black's Q-side castling. All the same, 10...Qc8 looks better than creating white-square weaknesses with 10...b6 as played.
White's final moves were very clever. 25...Nxd3 loses to 26.Qe7! while on the next move 26...Nxd3 is met by 27.Qc6! Nc5 28.Rxc5. Black's 26...Re7 guarded the b7 square, but lost control of the back rank, thus allowing 27.Qxd4 (when Rxd4 allows Rc8 mate). At the end, there is no defence to the threat of Qc8+.
White: Stuart Conquest
Black: Xie Jun
1 d4 Nf6 15 e4 Nxc3
2 Bg5 Ne4 16 Qxc3 Nd7
3 Bf4 d5 17 h5 Bh7
4 e3 Bf5 18 Kb1 0-0-0
5 f3 Nf6 19 Ka1 Kb8
6 c4 e6 20 Nf2 f6
7 Nc3 c6 21 Ba6 c5
8 g4 Bg6 22 Qa3 Qg3
9 h4 h6 23 Rhf1 cxd4
10 Qb3 b6 24 Nd3 Ne5
11 Nh3 dxc4 25 Rc1 Rhe8
12 Bxc4 Nd5 26 Qa4 Re7
13 0-0-0 Bd6 27 Qxd4 Red7
14 Bxd6 Qxd6 28 Qc3 resigns
Life & Style blogs
Nokia no more: Microsoft drops once-ubiquitous mobile name – in favour of its Lumia brand
Fake goats’ cheese found in supermarkets
Watch what happened when food critics were unknowingly served McDonald's
Uber France apologises for sexist promotion offering men free rides with 'incredibly hot chicks' as drivers
Hate your email? Google knows: its new app promises the earth (and a manageable inbox)
Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Support for EU membership 'at highest level since 1991' with most Brits wanting to stay 'in'
Thousands with degenerative conditions classified as 'fit to work in future' – despite no possibility of improvement
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
- 1 This 'woman calls police to order pizza' story isn't going where you're expecting
- 2 Marijuana use by teenagers does not result in a lower IQ or worse exam results, study finds
- 3 Watch what happened when food critics were unknowingly served McDonald's
- 4 Jimmy Carr's controversial Oscar Pistorius joke goes too far at the Q Awards
- 5 NHS staff banned from drinking tea or coffee on the job because it looks like they're not working hard enough
£300 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: SSRS Report Developer – 3 Mon...
£95 - £150 per day: Randstad Education Birmingham: Key Stage 1 teacher require...
£32000 - £39000 per annum + benefits + bonus: Ashdown Group: Generalist HR Man...
£18000 - £30000 per annum + uncapped: SThree: Do you feel like your sales role...