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NZ Championship

After six rounds we had a three-way share for the lead. The three leaders were Anthony Ker, Mark Van der Hoorn, and Bruce Anderson.

Round seven was an important round for the three leaders, as IM Dive was to play NM* Anderson, IM Ker was to play FM Garbett, and CM was to play Van der Hoorn.

The Dive/Anderson and Spain/Van der Hoorn games were drawn, but Anthony Ker, in a series of brilliant Bishop manoeuvres, scored the vital point over the former NZ Chess Champion, FM Paul Garbett. IM Ker of Wellington now is the sole leader in the 109th NZ Championship at a critical point in the tournament.

Robert Smith continued his even score, this time he drew with the defending NZ Chess Champion Scott Wastney.

In a game that went right down to the wire, just short of seven hours, Martin Haag of Germany managed to get a tempo to gain the full point against the bottom seed Hilton Bennett. Bennett, who had a brilliant start to the 109th NZ Championship with a +2 score from four rounds, now has a -1 score after 7 rounds.

Brian Jones from Australia is showing that he hard to beat, and is picking up the points after a slow start. In round seven Jones gave Anthony Dowden of Otago a good beating, and in the same way, so to with McLaren over Sutherland, another Otago player. Jones is on four points from seven rounds, McLaren 3.5/7, Dowden 3/7, and Sutherland 2.5/7.

Nic Croad gave Ben Giles of Maruia a good clobbering, was up by a number of pawns in the endgame. Ben Giles resigned one move away from checkmate, however the game could have ended in stalemate if Croad had accepted to fall into that trap.

Piotr Litwak from Poland managed to gain his second draw in the tournament in round seven.

NZ Major Open

Michael Turner managed to regain a share of the lead by giving fellow Wellingtonian Jacek Wojnar a beating. The Martin-Buss/Cummings match ended in a draw, which meant that Cummings also has a share of the lead with Turner, with Martin-Buss ½ point behind.

Arie Nijman continues to win, this time over David Wood. Nijman is leading the Grade 1 section and is also ½ point off the lead behind Turner and Cummings.

Fernando of Wellington picked up a point over Roy Keeling of Ashburton to put himself in second place in Grade 2. Brendan Reedy of Canterbury, an unrated player still leads the Grade 2 section.

As for the Junior prize, Christopher Riding of Hamilton has caught up on Stanislav Shatalin, both players are on four points. Both junior players are bound to have relatively difficult matches in round 8.

Results and Pairings: