Rapid chess, French defense, GM Kovalev – GM Ponkratov

Blitz chess and rapid chess video. Live blitz and rapid chess.
Rapid chess and blitz chess tournaments. Tal Memorial Rapid 2019, Riga

#kovalev #ponkratov #frenchdefense

The French Defense is a sharp counterattacking weapon against white’s first move 1.e4. From black’s first move, he looks to black the a2-g8 diagonal which is usually a big weakness for black and prepares to take control of the light squares in the center after 2.d5. Some of the greatest players of all time have had a hard time playing against the French Defense because it plays so much differently than a normal black defense.

The biggest problem you will see if you are black is the blocked bishop on the queen side that is blocked by the very first move of 1.e6. Many times the entire game will revolve around this key weakness of black’s. Always know your weaknesses in a chess game.

One of the big concepts to notice about the French Defense is that black usually counterattacks on the queen side while white will normally focus on the king side. This type of game can many types turn into a race to see who can strike first.

The French Defense ranks second in popularity only to the Sicilian against white’s 1.e4 and as many chess games start with 1.e4, the French Defense is a very good tool to have your chess repertoire.

Blitz chess (also known as speed or fast chess) is a type of chess in which each player is given less time to consider their moves than normal tournament time controls allow. Openings, tactics and strategy are same.

GM Kovalev, Vladislav – GM Ponkratov, Pavel
1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nd2 b6 4. Ngf3 Nf6 5. exd5 exd5 6. Ne5 Bb7 7. Bd3 Bd6 8. O-O O-O 9. Re1 Nbd7 10. Ndf3 c5 11. Bg5 Qc7 12. Nxd7 Nxd7 13. Be7 Bxe7 14. Rxe7 Qd6 15. Qe2 Bc6 16. Bf5 g6 17. Bxd7 Bxd7 18. Qe5 Qc6 19. Qf4 Bf5 20. Rc7 Qb5 21. Qh6 Qxb2 22. Rf1 g5 23. Qxg5+ Bg6 24. h4 h5 25. dxc5 bxc5 26. Qxd5 Qxc2 27. Rxc5 Rad8 28. Qg5 Qxa2 29. Ra5 Qe6 30. Re1 Qb6 31. Rea1 Rfe8 32. Ra6 Rd1+ 33. Rxd1 Qxa6 34. Rd2 Qc6 35. Qf4 Qc3 36. Rd6 a5 37. Kh2 Kg7 38. Rd5 Re4 39. Qb8 Rb4 40. Qa7 a4 41. Rd8 Re4 42. Qa8 Qc7+ 43. g3 Re2 44. Rg8+ Kf6 45. Qa6+ Re6 46. Qxa4 Qc5 47. Qa1+ Ke7 48. Qb2 Rb6 49. Qe2+ Re6 50. Qd2 Rd6 51. Qg5+ Qxg5 52. Nxg5 Ra6 53. Kg2 Kf6 54. Re8 Ra2 55. Re1 Bf5 56. Nf3 Bd7 57. Nd4 Rd2 58. Re4 Bc8 59. Rf4+ Kg6 60. Kf1 Bg4 61. Kg1 Rd1+ 62. Kg2 Bc8 63. Ne2 Bb7+ 64. f3 Rd2 65. Kf2 Ba6 66. Re4 Bxe2 67. Rxe2 Rd5 68. Ra2 Rd4 69. Ke3 Rb4 70. Ra6+ f6 71. Rd6 Rb3+ 72. Rd3 Rb1 73. Rd4 Re1+ 74. Kf4 Rh1 75. Rd2 Ra1 76. Re2 Rh1 77. Re6 Rh2 78. Re1 Ra2 79. g4 hxg4 80. fxg4 Rf2+ 81. Kg3 Ra2 82. Re6 Kf7 83. Re3 Kg6 84. Rf3 Ra1 85. Rc3 Rg1+ 86. Kf4 Rf1+ 87. Rf3 Ra1 88. h5+ Kg7 89. Rd3 Rf1+ 90. Rf3 Ra1 91. Kg3 Rg1+ 92. Kh3 Rh1+ 93. Kg2 Ra1 94. Kg3 Rg1+ 95. Kf4 Ra1 96. Rf2 Ra4+ 97. Kg3 Ra1 98. Rc2 Rg1+ 99. Kf3 Rf1+ 100. Kg2 Ra1 101. Rc7+ Kg8 102. Rb7 Ra3 103. Kf2 Rc3 104. Re7 Ra3 105. Re3 Ra4 106. Kf3 Kf7 107. Rb3 Ra7 108. Rb5 Kg7 109. Kf4 Rc7 110. Kf5 Ra7 111. Rd5 Rb7 112. Ke6 Rb6+ 113. Rd6 Rb4 114. Rd7+ Kh6 115. Kf5 Ra4 116. Rf7 Ra5+ 117. Kxf6 Ra6+ 118. Kf5 Ra5+ 119. Kf6 Ra6+ 120. Ke7 Ra4 121. Rf6+ Kh7 122. g5 Rh4 123. Kf7 Rg4 124. Rh6# 1-0

Tournament organized with support of Coca-Cola company, Rietumu Bank, Tolmets, Latvijas Balzams.


  1. Ελλάδα μου Πατρίδα μου says:

    Amazing how white won this.

  2. I thought … Rxe3 (instead of … Re5) was winning, but after dxe3 Qxe3+, Kf1 amazingly there is no checkmate, only perpetual check.

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