2022 U.S. Chess & Women’s Chess Championship - Day 11 Recap


by Vanessa West

GM Fabiano Caruana leads with two rounds to go. GM Ray Robson remains in second place, but GM Leinier Dominguez and GM Sam Sevian inched closer with victories. 

In the U.S. Women’s Championship, WGM Jennifer Yu won to keep her lead while GM Irina Krush and WGM Thalia Cervantes also won to remain in striking distance. Yu will face each of her closest competitors in the last two rounds, shaping up for an exciting finale. 

Check out the full replay of live coverage from the day here. The time control for the event is 90 minutes for 40 moves plus 30 minutes for the rest of the game; with a 30-second increment starting from move 1.

U.S. Championship - Standings after Round 11

U.S. Women’s Championship - Standings after Round 11

2022 U.S. Championship

GM Dariusz Swiercz vs. GM Samuel Sevian 0-1

After pressing with an extra pawn, Sevian gained a king attack with queen, rook, and advanced passed pawn. 

With 36…Rf3! Sevian breaks into his opponent’s king’s position. After 37.Qg2, Black followed up with 37…d2 38.Rd1 Qd3 39.Rxd2 Qe3+ 40.Kh2 and won material with 40…Qf4+ 41.Kg1 Rg3.  | 0-1, 42 moves

Sevian has had an incredibly solid tournament so far with an undefeated plus two score. | Photo courtesy of Saint Louis Chess Club, Lennart Ootes

GM Hans Niemann vs. GM Aleksandr Lenderman 1-0

GM Hans Niemann gained the upper hand in a dynamic endgame vs. GM Aleksandr Lenderman.


With 37.c6!, Niemann created a path for his king to support his passed d-pawn: 37…bxc6 38.Kc5 f4 39.Rb2 Ne6+ 40.Kxc6 and soon won. | 1-0, 45 moves

This is Niemann’s second win in a row. | Photo courtesy of Saint Louis Chess Club, Lennart Ootes

GM Wesley So vs. GM Elshan Moradiabadi 1-0

GM Wesley So’s powerful knight pair danced into the key b6-outpost to take over GM Elshan Moradiabadi’s queenside.

With 31.Rd7, So’s knights and rook have Black’s pieces tied up in knots. The game continued: 31…Be7 32.Bd4 Kf8 33.Bf2 Nd8 34.Nd5 Nc6 35.Nxe7 Nxe7 36.Nb6 when there is no way to save the b7-pawn as 36…Ra7?? Loses to 37.Rxe7 Kxe7 38.Nc8.  | 1-0, 36 moves

So is the reigning U.S. Champion. | Photo courtesy of Saint Louis Chess Club, Lennart Ootes

GM Leiner Dominguez vs. GM Christopher Yoo 1-0

Dominguez persistently pressed his extra exchange for 131 moves to score the full point vs. GM Christopher Yoo.

Nearing the 50 move rule, Dominguez played 82.Rd6+ forcing Black to move a pawn with 82…f6 and reset the move count. Dominguez pressed for five hours with his extra exchange and eliminated Yoo’s last pawn to win. | 1-0, 131 moves

Dominguez is tied for 3rd with Sevian, also with an undefeated plus two score. | Photo courtesy of Saint Louis Chess Club, Marcus Batton

The other three games ended in draws. 

2022 U.S. Women’s Championship

WGM Begim Tokhirjonova vs. WGM Jennifer Yu 0-1

Yu pressed with an extra pawn for 65 moves to convert in the rook ending vs. WGM Begim Tokhirjonova.

With 53…g4!, Yu sacrificed her own pawn on b7 to focus on creating passers on the kingside. The game continued: 54.Rxb7 g3 55.Rh7+ Kg5 56.rg7+ Kf6 57.Rg8 Rxf2+ and Yu soon won with her connected passed pawns. | 1-0, 65 moves

Though there have been several lead changes, Yu has been in the lead or tied for first for most of the event. | Photo courtesy of Saint Louis Chess Club, Lennart Ootes

IM Nazi Paikidze vs. GM Irina Krush 0-1

In a double-edged game with both players fighting to create king attacks, Krush gained an extra pawn and forced simplification into a winning ending. 

Krush played 34…Qg7, forcing the trade of queens (if 34…Qd8+ 35.Kh7 White is defenseless to the threats against her king, such as …Qa1+ and …Qd4+) and after 35.Qxg7+ Kxg7 36.Rc7 c3, her passed pawn was unstoppable without giving up material. | 0-1, 52 moves

The eight-time U.S. Women’s Champion is in close second with her chance to play the leader in round 12. | Photo courtesy of Saint Louis Chess Club, Lennart Ootes

WGM Thalia Cervantes vs. FM Ashritha Eswaran 1-0

Cervantes gained attacking chances and tactical play with her powerful knight on f5 and passed d5-pawn. 

Cervantes played 27.Nf5! aiming at weak points around Black’s kingside, the blockading rook on d6, and tactically defending the passed d5-pawn. Eswaran responded with 27…Rxd5 (if 27…Rd7 28.Qg3 g6 29.Nxh6 wins a pawn and after 29…Kg7 30.Nf5+ Kg8 31.d6 White has a commanding position.) and after 28.Ne3, White won material. | 1-0, 43 moves

Cervantes is on an incredible four-game winning streak. | Photo courtesy of Saint Louis Chess Club, Lennart Ootes

FM Ruiyang Yan vs. WIM Megan Lee 1-0

FM Ruiyang Yan won material with a deflection tactic vs. WIM Megan Lee.

With the simple yet effective 15.Bf4, Black is left with a loose knight on f5 and its defender, the g4-bishop, under attack with no good square to escape to. White is winning a piece. | 1-0, 38 moves

WFM Sophie Morris-Suzuki vs. WGM Sabina Foisor 0-1

Sabina Foisor defeated Sophie Morris-Suzuki in a wild attacking game where both kings were chased around until Black discovered a rook sacrifice leading to a five move checkmate. 

With the picturesque 37…Rh3+ Foisor kickstarts the checkmating combination: 38.Kxh3 Qxf3+ 39.Kh4 Rh8+ 40.Kg5 Rg8+ 41.Kh6 Qh3# | 0-1, 41 moves

The remaining two games ended in draws.

Round 12 of the 2022 U.S. & U.S. Women's Chess Championships will take place on Tuesday, October 18. Watch the action live at 1:20pm CT with commentators GM Yasser Seirawan, WGM Anastasiya Karlovich, and GM Cristian Chirila on uschesschamps.com and on the Saint Louis Chess Club’s YouTube and Twitch.tv channels.