2017 WWCh Rd.1.2: Zhou - Pogonina

Women's World Championship 2017
Round 1.2 February 12: Zhou - Pogonina

Game 1 was drawn -- see http://chess.ca/newsfeed/node/934 --  so the winner of this game would advance to round 2.

"Now the coaches and jounalists who were sent to WWCC by some countries look very nervous now. [before the game] Qiyu went outside for a walk as usual."

- Penny Zhou (Qiyu's mom, who also supplied the photo above)

The Game
Qiyu was well-prepared, playing the first 17 moves in minus-4 minutes (thanks to the 30s increment) while her opponent took 25. It was a typical d3 Lopez, where White could try to create weak queenside squares but hadn't ruled out kingside play. Pogonina played ...Be6, accepting doubled e-pawns, but Qiyu missed her (one?) chance to break in at move 24. After that, it was around equal, with no obvious plan for either player. But Qiyu unnecessarily sidelined a N at move 44 and 46, after which Black had all the play, and won smoothly, despite serious time pressure for both players. Pogonina advances, Qiyu goes home.

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