Shabalov vs. Macieja
Opening: E25: Nimzo-Indian: Samish variation
Player(s): Shabalov, Macieja
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Nobody knows more about winning open tournaments in the US than Alexander Shabalov. Over the years he has bombed out here and there, but when he is on form, he is always prepared to push his luck as far as it will go. In the U.S. Open in Phoenix, Shabba had a turn back the clock performance with 8.5 out of 9, holding off Ilya Nyzhnyk in the last round after sprinting out 8-0. In the all-in-one-section U.S. Open, scores are typically high, but at some point you need to knock off strong players. That stretch was a gauntlet of GMs - Maceija, Ramirez, and Gorovets - all victims of the four-time U.S. Champion. Our feature game is his defeat of Bart Macieja, a Polish native now settled in Texas. At a critical moment in the game, Shabalov made a risky decision that paid off when his opponent shied away from complications