Miraculous save against Oparin in round 8

In the 8th round, Jobava went “all in” to try to win the game. Avoiding known theoretical lines in the opening however, can be a huge risk.

“I did not want a draw so I allowed him to attack in order for me to create some counter-play. However, 12..Re8 followed by 13..Nc6 was a mistake as I completely missed 14. Qg4.”

Asked if he was playing too quickly in the opening, Jobava admitted: “Yes, I might have played a bit too fast and normally I do not do such blunders”.

With the Qg4 move, Oparin started a dangerous kingside attack but Jobava defended well, placing his queen on Qh8(!). At move 29, Jobava could finally create a bit of counter-attack with Qc7, followed by an exchange of queens. Going in the endgame however, Oparin still had a clear advantage, but did not find the way to seize the win. A last critical moment was at move 43:

“It looked pretty dreadful with his mating threat and passed e-pawn, but then I found the only move Rc6 that secured the draw”, concluded a relieved Jobava who was close to losing. “Obviously the result was disappointing but considering how the game developed I am pretty happy I managed to save the draw.”

Full game at Chessbomb.

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