England were top seeds in their group of the 163-nation online Olympiad last weekend, but had to work to qualify.

This weekend is a sterner test, a top group pool headed by the mighty Russians and the strong Armenians. England will be fighting for third and a place in the knock-out stages against Bulgaria, Croatia, Romania and Turkey.

The event format, two men, two women and two juniors handicaps England, whose strength is their quartet of high rated grandmasters.

Women’s chess is a key difference. Russia and Eastern Europe have many female professionals, England only one.

England’s matches can be viewed free and live on chessbomb.com on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, with rounds starting at 3pm, 4pm and 5pm. England v Russia is in round six at 5pm on Saturday.

The odds are against England advancing further, so to qualify in unfavourable conditions would be a success comparable with past Olympiad medals.

World champion Magnus Carlsen and US champion Hikaru Nakamura were locked at 3-3 before Thursday’s final set of the online Tour final. Play starts on chess24.com/en at 3pm. 

2381

From a game won by Hugh Myers in New York. The rare opening 1 c4 g5?! is named after him. When he reached this position as Black (to play), spectators began to argue over Black’s best way to continue. None of the onlookers predicted Myers’s eventual choice, which led to his opponent’s immediate resignation. What was Black’s winner?

For solution, click here


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