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     Volume 4 Issue 43 | April 22, 2005 |

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Time Out

Grandmaster Reefat Chess

IM Reefat Bin Sattar has made his final GM norm and is now set to become the country's third grandmaster, after GM Niaz Murshed and GM Ziaur Rahman. He became runner-up in the just concluded United Insurance and Leasing GM tournament after winning his last round game against GM Safin. Indian champion GM Surya Shekhar Ganguly won the event.

Reefat will have to wait for at least one more tournament to raise his rating to the required level. However, the toughest part of the job is done and he will surely join the elite club of grandmasters very soon.

Reefat is one of the two players, the other being Zia, who helped our chess reach a reasonably high standard in the early nineties when Niaz had actually quit serious chess. The lanky soft-spoken man, known for his great humility and very decent manners, should have actually won the title at least a decade back when he was playing exceptionally well. Reefat is no doubt the most gifted tactician that we have ever had. And he was in his lethal best in the early or mid nineties. Spectators always enjoyed his brilliant combinations and incredibly fast play during time scrambles. Well, such scrambles were very common in his games and he virtually became a time trouble addict. The problem still persists. Perhaps time trouble addicts cannot play their natural game until the clock becomes more threatening than the opponent!

Reefat's final tally of 8.5 points (out of 11 games) in the United GM could have been better. He was a pawn up, that too a centre pawn, in the game against Ganguly, but could not turn it into a winning advantage. He returned the pawn in the hope of dragging Ganguly's king on to the centre of the board, but finally lost his way and the full point.

Reefat has often been blamed for not taking the game seriously enough. He never took chess as a full time occupation. Now that he has won the coveted title, it will be interesting to see how he plays in future.

Here is how he outplayed GM Dibyendu Barua in a very sharp game.

White- Reefat Bin Sattar
Black-Dibyendu Barua [C43]
Penta Media GM, Kelamabakkam 2000

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.d4 Nxe4 4.Bd3 d5 5.Nxe5 Nd7 6.Nc3 Nxe5 7.dxe5 Nxc3 8.bxc3 Bc5 9.00 Qh4 10.Rb1 00 11.Qf3 c6 12.Be3 b6 13.Bxc5 bxc5 14.c4 Be6 15.Qe3 dxc4 16.Be4 Bd5 17.f4 Qe7 18.Bxd5 cxd5 19.f5 Rfe8 20.Rbe1 f6 21.e6 Qd6 22.Qe2 Re7 23.Rf3 Rb8 24.Rd1 Rd8 25.Rh3 h6 26.Rh4 c3 27.Qg4 Qe5 28.Kf1 Kh8 29.Re1 Qc7 30.Qg6 d4 31.Ree4 d3 32.Rxh6+ gxh6 33.Qxf6+ Rg7 34.e7 Kh7 35.exd8Q dxc2 36.Qxh6+ 1-0


Position after 32.Rxh6


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