David Navara and Sergei Movsesian played 12 games against each other — at the same time! This was the best of the lot.

In early December, David Navara of the Czech Republic decisively won a 12-game match against Sergei Movsesian of Armenia, by a score of 8.5-3.5. The twist was that they played all 12 games at the same time! No doubt, playing so many games at once contributed to the high number of decisive results. Despite Navara’s dominance, my favorite game was one in which Movsesian prevailed.  

Navara, D. vs. Movsesian, S.
Navara vs Movsesian Simul | Prague CZE | Round 1.12 | 04 Dec 2016 | ECO: A29 | 0-1
1. c4 e5 2. g3 Nc6 3. Bg2 Nf6 4. Nc3 Bb4 5. Nd5 Bc5 6. Nf3 d6 7. d3 h6 8. O-O O-O 9. a3 Nxd5 10. cxd5 Nd4 11. Nxd4 Bxd4 12. e3 Bb6 This has been a pretty standard opening so far, but around this point I think Navara starts to falter.
13. b4?! Now Black can use the b6 square for his bishop forever.
13. Bd2 This move looked better to me.  )
13... a5! 14. Bb2
14. Bd2 I would prefer to recapture on b4 with the bishop.
14... axb4 15. Bxb4 I still prefer Black's position, but White can now play a4-a5, pushing the Black bishop back to a7, allowing White to develop counterplay by attacking the pawn on c7.  )
14... axb4! 15. axb4 Rxa1 16. Qxa1 Bf5 Black's queenside is extremely secure and will remain so despite not having many pieces there. This allows him free reign to build pressure on the kingside.
17. e4 Bg4! 18. d4 f6! Simple and strong. Now White has a hard time contesting the a-file since the d-pawn needs constant attention and opening the f-file with dxe5 fxe5 is never a good option.
19. f4 Desperation, but White's position was already very bad.
19. dxe5 fxe5 Is a disaster for White and Black threatens Be2.
20. Qe1 Bd7 White cannot stop Bb5.  )
19... Qa8! 20. h3
20. Qxa8 Rxa8 And White loses the d-pawn.  )
20... Bd7
20... Be2 This move was even stronger, but the move played by Movsesian is enough to secure a big edge.  )
21. Kh2 Qxa1 22. Rxa1 exd4 23. Rd1 Ra8 24. Bxd4 Bxd4 25. Rxd4 Ra2 White has more defensive chances than he deserved, but his position is still very difficult.
26. Rc4 Bb5! The pawn on c7 is immune.
27. Rc1
27. Rxc7 Bf1  )
27... c6! 28. Kg1
28. dxc6 bxc6  )
28... Rb2 29. Bf1?!
29. e5! This position should be defensible for White, but he may have been paying more attention to the other games.  )
29... Ba4! 30. Rc4? White will lose quickly now, but the position was tough anyway. White could not save the pawn on b4.
30. b5! This was the only way to fight on. After
30... cxd5 31. Rc8+ Kh7 32. exd5 Bxb5 33. Bxb5 Rxb5 34. Rc7 White would have had good drawing chances.  )
30... Rb1! 31. Kf2
31. Rc3 Bb5 32. Rf3 This saves the bishop, but not the game.
32... Be2! 33. Rf2 Bd3 And White is helpless, since both Kg2 and Rf3 will always be met by Bxe4. Black brings his king over and wins.  )
31... Rxf1+ 32. Kxf1 Bb5


Samuel Shankland is a United States grandmaster ranked No. 4 in the country. He is a professional player and recipient of the Samford Fellowship in 2013, the most prestigious award in the United States for young chess players. He was also a member of the team that won the gold medal at the 2016 Chess Olympiad. He is at @GMShanky on Twitter and is also on Facebook.