Grandmaster (GM) Jan Timman of the Netherlands easily won the Interzonal tournament held in Mendetaxco, near Mexico City. The Interzonals are the second step in the two-year cycle to qualify a challenger for the 1986 world championship match, with four players advancing from each of three separate tournaments. Timman's 12-3 score was well ahead of the other three qualifiers for the Candidates' tournament. They were GM Jes'us Nogueiras of Cuba (101/2 points); GM Mikhail Tal of the Soviet Union, a former world champion (10); and International Master Kevin Spraggett of Canada (9).
That the 33-year-old Timman (who is ranked third in the world) won was no surprise, but the second-place finish of the 26-year-old Nogueiras must be regarded as an upset. Apparently he is the most promising chess player to emerge from Cuba since the legendary Capablanca.
Subpar performances were turned in by both United States players and two of the Soviet players. US champion Lev Alburt of New York scored 7 points, while GM Walter Browne of Berkeley, Calif., and GM Oleg Romanishin of the USSR finished with 61/2. The other Soviet representative, GM Yuri Balashov, forfeited the last four rounds because of illness and scored only 41/2 points.
The tournament was weakened by the last-minute withdrawal of GM Robert H"ubner of West Germany and the nonappearance of Soviet co-champion Mikhail Gurevich, which resulted in speculation that political reasons had dictated his absence.
Timman's victory over British GM Jonathan Speelman in the Mendetaxco Interzonal is typical of his uncompromising style and his refusal to shirk complictions in his quest for chessic truth. English Opening Speelman Timman Speelman Timman Speelman Timman Speelman Timman Speelman Timman Speelman Timman Speelman Timman Speelman Timman Speelman Timman Speelman Timman Speelman Timman Speelman Timman
1. P-QB4 P-K4
2. N-QB3 B-N5
3. P-KN3 (a) BxN
4. NPxB N-QB3
5. B-KN2 KN-K2
6. P-B5 P-QN3
7. B-QR3 B-N2
8. P-Q4 P-Q4
9. PxP e.p. BPxP 10. PxP PxP (b) 11. Q-R4 O-O (c) 12. R-Q1 Q-B1 13. N-B3 (d) R-K1 14. O-O N-R4 15. NxP BxB 16. KxB Q-K3! 17. N-B3 QxRP 18. R-Q7 N-Q4! (e) 19. RxRP QR-Q1 20. N-N5 (f) QxP 21. B-B1 N-QB5 22. K-N1 P-B3 23. N-B7 (g) NxP 24. Q-B6 R-Q8 25. RxR NxR 26. N-R6 ch PxN 27. QxBP Q-K8 ch 28. K-N2 Q-K5 ch 29. K-N1 Q-N3 30. Q-Q4 R-K8 ch 31. K-N2 Q-K5 ch 32. QxQ RxQ 33. BxP R-K3 34. B-B4 R-K7 35. K-B3 RxP ch 36. K-K4 RxP 37. K-B5 N/8-K6 ch 38. K-K6 R-K7 39. R-N7 R-K8 40. R-Q7 R-Q8 41. R-N7 R-Q1 42. Resigns
A. White allows the doubling of his pawns. 3. Q-B2 or 3. N-Q5 is a stodgier alternative.
B. White has succeeded in undoubling his pawns, but he remains with a backward, isolated QBP. White's active bishops constitute great compensation, so the chances are about equal.
C. Without the availability of this move, Black's play would be suspect. The tactical justification is 12. QBxN, NxB; 13. BxB, Q-B2!; 14. BxR, QxP ch; 15. K-B1, QxR ch; 16. K-N2, RxB.
D. Too complaisant. First 13. B-R3, virtually forcing 13. . . . P-B4, would keep Black from zeroing in on the QBP and would steer the game into interesting channels.
E. Black centralizes and places the White QBP and KP under fire.
F. This attempt at active counterplay is doomed to failure against Black's highly centralized position. After 20. . . . QxP, White must constantly be on vigil against Black's threat of . . . N-K6 ch.
G. Desperation in a lost position. White hopes for 23. . . . R-QB1, when 24. Q-Q7 gives counterplay based on the threat of 25. NR6 ch and mate. All to no avail, as Timman is remorseless in his conduct of the rest of the game. Speelman continues play until the time control is over.
International Grandmaster Arthur Bisguier is a former US champion and has won or shared the US Open title five times.