The round eighth of FIDE Women Grand Prix in Ankara was unusually peaceful– all the games finished with draw result even all them were full of struggle. The leader of the tournament Humpy Koneru, who had had 100% result with black pieces, gave away first half a point playing with black against Munguntuul Batkhuyag. The current leader of the tournament got quite a remarkable advantage in the middle game but didn’t manage to convert it into more. Anna Muzychuk didn’t use an opportunity to play for victory in the game against Antoaneta Stefanova and remains on the second place half a point behind of Humpy Koneru. Kubra Ozturk came very close to get the first full point in the game against Zhao Xue. Turkish player refused to repeat the position in the middle game, put the pressure on her opponent but missed some good chances.
Kubra Ozturk-Zhao Xue 1/2-1/2
Kubra Ozturk: I think I played very well today, so the game was good. In the end I quickly played Rf3 and after Rf3 Kf3 it’s draw because I could not anything against two pass pawns. Instead I had to play just c4 and it should be winning with extra bishop.
Zhao Xue: I played very bad today. I think it’s our second game, so the first one I lost. I don’t know why she always plays against me so well (laughing)! I was a little bit worse in the middle game, so I thought draw would be a good result for me but my opponent wanted to fight! She found some chances after with the help from my side also. I think her move Qd6 was not good – after Re1 everything could be over.
Ruan Lufei – Tatiana Kosintseva 1/2-1/2
Ruan Lufei: I think the opening was ok for black and I guess her move Bb2 was a mistake. Maybe Nef2 would lead to slightly better position for white. After Bb2 I think Black has at least equal position. And even have chances because e3-pawn is very weak. Later on both of us made few mistakes on the time control but in any case the game looked more or less equal.
Tatiana Kosintseva: I agree that Bb2 was a mistake, probably Ndc5 was better move. I didn’t like Nf2 but also thought that after Nc5 Bc5 Nc5 black has Qe7. So my knights were displaced after Bb2 and position became a bit worse. I lost the chance to play Nf2 because she had Bg5 all the time. I had to stay and keep the position. My opponent started to play a bit quickly and maybe not precisely.
Betul Yildiz – Monika Socko 1/2-1/2
Betul Yildiz: I liked my position after the opening. We exchanged queens and she had weak h3-pawn I missed the move Rh1 which surprised me a lot. This rook endgame turned to be drawish.
Monika Socko: I also think that after Rh1 my position is not worse any more. In the opening I missed some chances. I knew this tactics with Ng5 after Bh5 but missed it somehow.
Munguntuul Batkhuyag – Humpy Koneru 1/2-1/2
Humpy Koneru: It was a very interesting game. In the game I felt I was better after Qc3 Rc1 there were a lot of tricks but I don’t know where exactly I had chances. I went to the rook endgame but it was drawish.
Munguntuul Batkhuyag: I had feeling if I don’t play f5 my position will be lost because I had weaknesses a2 and d3 pawns. I still don’t know if black could improve their play.
Antoaneta Stefanova – Anna Muzychuk 1/2-1/2
Antoaneta Stefanova: I was a bit surprised because of Anna’s opening choice. I wasted a lot of time but actually I don’t know if I played correctly, It was complicated position and it looked fine for black.
Anna Muzychuk: I wanted to play something different because I was not satisfied with the positions I was getting before. I prepared this line but the move b4 was new for me. Till that moment we were repeating the game Aronian-Karjakin. I started calculated all the variations after b4 but I’m not sure about Bf6. I could not find an advantage for me and I don’t know if it was an advantage.
Viktorija Cmilyte – Ju Wenjun 1/2-1/2
I think it was quite ok position for me after the opening. I was happy with what I get but basically it must about equal. Still I had to find couple of exact moves because if I was not careful it could become worse.
Ju Wenjun: I think it was equal. Maybe I should not change queens so fast. My opponent played very accurate, so the final result is logical.