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Etienne Bacrot, who is bidding to become the youngest-ever grandmaster, came down to earth in the fourth round of the tournament in Enghien, near Paris, when he was beaten by the Latvian Igor Rausis in only 17 moves. Bacrot (aged 14 years and one month) began the event needing six points from nine games to complete the qualification for his grandmaster title. When he won his first three games, including a victory over the former world title challenger Viktor Korchnoi, it looked as though the task would be a formality, but his fourth-round loss means he still has work to do.

White: Etienne Bacrot

Black: Igor Rausis

Queen's Indian Defence

1 d4 e6 10 0-0-0 exd5

2 c4 Nf6 11 Bxf6 Bxf6

3 Nf3 b6 12 Nxd5 0-0

4 a3 Bb7 13 Nb6 cxb6

5 Nc3 d5 14 Rxd8 Rxd8

6 Qc2 dxc4 15 Be2 Nd7

7 Bg5 a6 16 e5 Nc5

8 e4 b5 17 b4 cxb3

9 d5 Be7 White resigns

White's over-ambitious opening play was met in fine style with a queen sacrifice. With rook, bishop, pawn and a violent attack for his queen, it cannot have been too difficult a decision for Rausis to take. His 16...Nc5! was a pretty way to finish things off: after 17.exf6 Be4! any move of the queen is met by Nb3+. At the end with ...Rac8 and Be4 coming, White cannot survive for long.

While we are on the subject of 17-move wins with Black, here's another one from the ICI Katalpo quick-play tournament in Middlesbrough. The loser is a grandmaster and the reigning British champion. Here, however, he falls into a trap in one of his opponent's pet opening lines.

White: Chris Ward

Black: John Horner

Chigorin Defence

1 d4 d5 10 Nxd4 Qxd4

2 c4 Nc6 11 Qb3 Qe5

3 Nc3 Nf6 12 Bg2 0-0-0

4 cxd5 Nxd5 13 Be3 Bc5

5 Nf3 Bf5 14 Nd1 Rxd1+!

6 Bd2 e6 15 Qxd1 Bxe3

7 g3? Ndb4 16 fxe3 Rd8

8 Rc1 Nxd4 17 Qb3 Nd3+!

9 Qa4+ c6 White resigns

At the end, 18.exd3 Qxe3+ 19.Kd1 Bxd3 is fatal to White. The ICI Katalpo tournament was won by Michael Adams with 5 out of 5, a point ahead of Colin Crouch and Bogdan Lalic.

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