Sun Herald, August 19
Zhao left Australia a month ago to try his luck on the European summer circuit and has so far registered two impressive results in England: third place in a Young Masters tournament in Witley followed by a plus score, 6/11, on his debut in the British Championship in Scarborough.
Zhao's Scarborough result was especially encouraging - to lose only two games in such a strong field was quite an achievement, especially since one of the losses was an unnecessary last round defeat when only a few moves away from claiming a draw in a standard rook versus rook and bishop endgame.
Zhao has been seeded mid-field in Athens, an under 20 event but, after a brilliant 3/3 start will be looking for a top 10 finish, a result no Australian has managed since Greg Hjorth's treble success in the early 1980s.
In contrast to Zhao's success, another top Australian player in Europe, Alex Wohl, has struggled to find any sort of consistent form.
This month Wohl left Europe to contest the Asian Championship in Calcutta but stayed below 50% for most of the tournament.
Wohl has been slowly regaining form since the disastrous Capablanca Memorial in Havana in May and Wohl's final result of 5.5/11 in Calcutta, with a near IM result, will be cause for some small satisfaction.
In Havana Wohl managed to lose one of the year's shortest master games but, fortunately, he has not plumbed the lows explored by White in the following game, played in Germany a fortnight ago.
1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Qf3!? A favourite of the Australian correspondence expert John Kellner. 3...Nc6 4.Ne2 As played with success by Kellner, but 4.c3 may be better. 4...d5! 5.exd5 Nb4! 5...Ne5 6.Qxf4 is less convincing. 6.Nxf4!? Nf6 In the 1970s, Candian GM Duncan Suttles analysed 6...Nxc2+ 7.Kd1 Nxa1 8.Bb5+ Bd7 9.Re1+ Be7 10.Ne6 as "wild and unclear." Welling knew Suttles' analysis but Gustafsson seemed all at sea. 7.Nc3?
Following Suttles' analysis for one move too long; there was still time for 7.Bb5+!?. Now Gustafsson began to think, looking mainly at the messy 7...Nxc2+ 8.Kd1 Bg4 9.Bb5+ Ke7 10.Kxc2 Bxf3 11.gxf3. Suddenly, his eyes lit up and he played... 7...Qe7+! 8.Kf2 8.Be2 Bg4 is also hopeless. 8...Ng4+ 0-1
Amazingly, Welling recovered from this game to tie for first in the tournament!