News FIDE

FIDE President’s working visit to Belgrade



On Monday, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov arrived on a working visit to Belgrade where he met with the Prime Minister of Serbia Ivica Dacic. At the meeting also present were Vladimir Ilic, Head of Prime Minister’s Chancellery, and representatives of the Serbian Chess Federation together with its President Miroslav Kopanja.




Meeting with the Prime Minister of Serbia Ivica Dacic

FIDE President visited the office of the European Chess Union, which is located on the 19th floor of one of business centers in the heart of Belgrade.


ECU General Secretary Sava Stoisavljevic welcomed Kirsan Ilyumzhinov



Meeting with the State Secretary of the Ministry of Youth and Sports of Serbia Predrag Perunicic


Meeting with the Minister of Education, Science and Technological Development Tomislav Jovanovic

FIDE President’s Rapid Chess Cup in Ingushetia



On April 13 the FIDE President arrived to Republic of Ingushetia (Russia). In Nazran he participated in the closing ceremony of FIDE President’s Rapid Chess Cup together with the Head of Republic of Ingushetia Yunus-Bek Yevkurov and Head of Republic of Dagestan Ramazan Abdulatipov.

FIDE President thanked the participants for their interesting game and congratulated the winner from Stavropol Alexander Lastin. The tournament was held in the sports complex “Adi-Akhmad".





The main prize of the tournament is a new car


FIDE President and the winner GM Alexander Lastin


Closing ceremony: FIDE President with the Head of Republic of Ingushetia Yunus-Bek Yevkurov and Head of Republic of Dagestan Ramazan Abdulatipov


Awarding Ceremony: the winner GM Alexander Lastin


The runner-up GM Dzhakay Dzhakaev from Dagestan




Women's FIDE Grand Prix in Khanty-Mansiysk: Round 6



Round 6

We enter the second half of the FIDE Women GP with the same leader: Hou Yifan, who keeps the one point distance from the second place, after drawing with Black against Antoaneta Stefanova. In her shadow, just like yesterday, follows Anna Muzychuk, who drew the second Anna from the tournament: Ushenina.

On the heels of second place jumped Alexandra Kosteniuk, who won her game against Nana Dzagnidze, being now the collector of 3.5 points, just like her compatriot, Olga Girya, who won against Zhao Xue.

Trailing on three points are: Kateryna Lagno, Zhao Xue, Antoaneta Stefanova and Anna Ushenina. On an honourable 2.5 is Nafisa Muminova after a convincing win against Tatiana Kosintseva, as well as Nana Dzagnidze, who lost her game against Alexandra Kosteniuk.

With the hope to do better in the upcoming rounds are: Tatiana Kosintseva on two points and Batchimeg Tuvshintugs, who broke her unfortunate series and drew against Kateryna Lagno.


The ever-growing tournament tension erupted through two small incidents:

One of them, as unpleasant as it may seem in a chess tournament, could also be regarded positively. At some point one of the spectators was absorbed by the surrounding atmosphere of the round to the extent that he was calculating and suggesting moves and variations in loud voice. He was immediately evacuated from the playing area, but we could indirectly be glad that chess can sometimes raise a type of enthusiasm which is typical for a football stadium…

The second incident is also double-faceted. From outside, it looked pleasantly diverting, but for its protagonist, Zhao Xue, it caused an internal tragedy…

Zhao Xue – Olga Girya 0-1

The game started after an amusing moment, at least for the spectators. On her arrival, Zhao Xue sat down in front of… Anna Muzychuk! Was this provoked by over-focusing or rather by stage fright, this didn’t seem important. The main question was whether Zhao Xue had prepared against the… right opponent, which was Olga Girya today, and certainly not Muzychuk.


Zhao Xue taking the right seat

The truth came out at the press conference when Zhao Xue confessed that she had mixed up everything with preparation: not only the opponent, but the colour, too! She added that the shock was so strong that she couldn’t recover properly.



The game didn’t go her way, either. Girya’s 4…e5 is reported to be a refutation of White’s setup (for instance, Caruana’s faced it against Karjakin, after which he played it with Black, too!) and the rare 6.exf6 only made things worse for White. Girya went on increasing her advantage confidently and, much to the spectators’ delight, forced her opponent’s resignation in a double-queen ending, something not very common in practice.
The torture ended with: 41…Qc6 42.e4 fxe4+ 43.Qxe4 Qd1+

Nafisa Muminova – Tatiana Kosintseva 1-0

The Uzbek player played an excellent, sharp Scheveningen Sicilian variation today against Tatiana Kosintseva, which brought her an important victory! From outside (and for the players either, as revealed during the press conference), it was not clear  where and when precisely did things go wrong for Black; perhaps 11…Nxd4 was premature. Later on it became more and more difficult for the Russian GM to find all the best and, by no means easy, defensive moves… after the very strong 23.f5! from Nafisa, followed by 25.Rxf5! nothing could be saved from fire anymore and Tatiana soon resigned.


Powerful play from Nafisa Muminova

The beautiful execution reminds the public of the same deadly break of Hou Yifan against Dzagnidze!

Antoaneta Stefanova – Hou Yifan 1/2

Judging by the opening played, we could easily believe that colours were actually reversed. Hou Yifan played the Owen opening (something she had done twice so far, but only against 1.c4), which is held to be rather experimental, thus seeming to rather suit Stefanova’s style! But the systematic way Black undermined the white center and the ensuing dynamic compensation for the pawn weakness suggests that Hou Yifan had analyzed the position thoroughly, rather than improvising over the board. We can also appreciate the width of the World Champion’s preparation, as well as her constant aim to put pressure on her opponents.


Antoaneta Stefanova’s stubborn defense couldn’t be broken

The game ended in a draw only when there was not even one trace of tension left: the relatively popular lately king versus king ending…

Alexandra Kosteniuk – Nana Dzagnidze 1-0

Dzagnidze played the Paulsen-Kann Sicilian, eventually leading to a known Hedgehog tabyia. Her choice seemed to match the yesterday’s approach, when she had offered to her opponent all the space she wanted, just to bounce back at the right moment. Today, after the initial regrouping maneuvering, Nana played the rare (but not really uncommon as a general idea) 17…f5, which suddenly placed her on the side heading for space. Due to White’s harmonious mobilization, weakening the e6-pawn looked risky, but during the post-mortem Aleksandra confessed that she didn’t like her position at that point.


A very disciplined Alexandra Kosteniuk, who always arrives amongst first in the playing hall

The game had a slightly fluctuating course with some white pressure but reasonable chances for Black.

At the culminating moment the uninvited guest, the mutual time trouble, caused the players throwing the point from one to the other…

After the unfortunate 28.Bf4? the Georgian could have profited to the maximum and maybe even won the game, had she played 28…e5! where after 29.Bh2 Bh6 comes… the moment slipped away and as soon as the next move came, the table turned and suddenly Kosteniuk was in the lead.

In such cases, the player who commits the penultimate mistake wins… And as this was the last twist in the evaluation of the position, Kosteniuk confidently claimed the full point.

Kateryna Lagno – Batchimeg Tuvshintugs 1/2

A difficult game for the Mongolian player, not only due to her position in the standings but mostly psychologically. In round-robin events, the chess players tend to metamorphose into ruthless sportsmen, fighting up to the last gasp if necessary, against those considered to be out of shape or simply on a low score. As a consequence, the pressure on the player who’s position is less comfortable in the standings, is even higher, this having a good deal to say in the unsatisfactory Batchimeg’s result so far.


Batchimeg Tuvshintugs and Nafisa Muminova supporting each other. And they both did well!

The English went fine for the Ukrainian, who was not shy to grasp the advantage and to apply more and more pressure on Black. She had an interesting idea by playing: 16.b5!? where if 16…cxb5 17.Qxb5 there is big pressure in the endgame.

Kateryna chose instead to chase the queen away with 16.Nc4, which perhaps gave her even more practical chances as she soon could have taken a pawn with 19.Qxa7; perhaps she was afraid of 19…Bg4, feeling that her pieces would be too far away from the king, in some sort of isolation on the opposite side of the board.


The Mongolian broke the spell

The more cautious move 19.Nxc8 came, giving Black chances to fight back and hope for rescue. The game simplified in a rook ending with an extra pawn for White. Determined to break the less favourable series, Batchimeg defended accurately and the maximum Lagno could achieve was… stalemating her!

Anna Ushenina – Anna Muzychuk 1/2

The wrestling between the two Anna-s followed in the footsteps of Kramnik vs Kasparov 2000 World Championship match, and further on it seemed to copy the Hungarian GM’s repertoire, Berkes.



Soon Anna’s strategy, the one which still plays for Ukraine, worked wonders for this typical Nimzo’s line: the pawn sacrifice was just a temporary one, getting in return a good deal of space and ideas for attack.

Perhaps Ushenina’s concrete but natural 18.Qd4 was not the most precise way to question her opponent’s defense, giving Black some time to breath and regroup.

Instead, 18.Rfc1 Qb6 19.Qd4!? would have been interesting. This looks paradoxical in a position where common sense would dictate keeping the queens for the attack; here though it is justified by the weak a7 pawn and excellent coordination of White’s pieces; in case Black responds: 19…Qxd4, then 20.Nxd4 and Black cannot take the b4-pawn because of 21.Nc6 with huge pressure.

In the game, Anna Ushenina obtained some rather symbolic advantage and tortured her opponent for a few dozens moves, but it all ended up peacefully.

Official website

Round 6 Photo Gallery

Standings


An apparently pacific 5th round


After the rest day, the podium remains unaltered: Hou Yifan cruises to another win against Nafisa Muminova, running with a full point away from Anna Muzychuk. The Slovenian GM drew Antoaneta Stefanova, being on the second place unshared with 3.5 points.

Third comes Zhao Xue with three points after her draw against Alexandra Kosteniuk. Just half a point behind follows the platoon with 2.5/5: Kateryna Lagno, Antoaneta Stefanova, Alexandra Kosteniuk, Olga Girya, Anna Ushenina and Nana Dzagnidze, who climbed her way up to 50%, after receiving a present from Batchimeg Tuvshintugs in a cliff-hanging queen endgame.

On two points is the Russian GM, Tatiana Kosintseva, who didn't break the Ukrainian defense (Kateryna Lagno), followed by Nafisa Muminova on 1.5 and Batchimeg Tuvshintugs with 0.5, who strikes a bad patch.

The fifth round saw a relatively high drawing rate: four out of six, although it should have been five... The same as in round three, all the Russian players drew, not before all the possibilities had been exhausted. The apparently peaceful results right after the free day, may suggest that by having relaxed a bit the players increased their accuracy in all phases of the game, including defense.


The players and media alike enjoying the rest day!

After four long and hard fought games, Stefanova thought it was about time to spare her energy and finished first today, drawing against Muzychuk with Black. Although at first glance it looked like a game completely lacking fireworks, you will be surprised by the inventiveness the Bulgarian always keeps in her pockets.


Antoaneta Stefanova's shortest game so far

Today she chose a rather unorthodox way to play the Scotch, with 4...Bb4+, which worked perfectly well for her. Black equalized quickly, much to the despair of Muzychuk, who surely had hoped for more as White. Further on, it could have been a total war zone, after the eccentric but very strong rook maneuver, via b8-b5-h5, looking forward to blow the position with g5, g4... Stefanova said at the press conference. But after the safe 18.Nf1, killing any attacking idea, and followed by the queens' exchange, the game ended up in a rook endgame. The logical and expected result: a draw by repetition.

Shall we be surprised that Hou Yifan played another model game in the Catalan, winning her fourth game already? Noteworthy is the first move 1.c4, which she copy-pasted after her first round win against Kosintseva.


Hou Yifan cruises to another win, consolidating her sole lead, by restoring the advance of a full point over the second place.

The Chinese mastered the new opening and middle game almost perfectly, thus proving that she had thrown another lethal rifle in her weaponry. She sacrificed a pawn early in the opening, gained an advance in development and gradually took over the control of the whole board. In the final phase, the doubled rooks on the seventh rank completely paralyzed her opponent, culminating with the simple but nevertheless elegant Queen sacrifice Qxf8+! Facing inevitable mate, Muminova had to sign the scoresheet below a zero.


Grandmasters in deep concentration

In China against Russia today, the game started fresh, as early as move 4. Zhao Xue continued in a very original manner, but perhaps a bit too slow for claiming an advantage. The plan b4-b5 is typical for these positions but Kosteniuk reacted well and neutralized all the threats. After 34 moves and 3.5 hours of play, the strategical battle ended in the correct: draw. As a coincidence, the last move of the game was a back rank queen check, the same as in her compatriot's game, Hou Yifan.

If in the previous rounds Girya's technique didn't deliver the expected results, in today's game against Ushenina she turned the tables around by saving a difficult position.


Olga Girya fighting her way back in a difficult position

The new trend in Cambridge Springs used by Ushenina today worked wonders, especially after the little help from her opponent, which started with the less fortunate 16.a3. But the clock was ticking mercilessly and the Ukrainian didn't find the most precise way to convert the advantage, having to go content herself with bringing home only a draw.


Tatiana Kosintseva came well armed for a potentially long fight against Kateryna Lagno

In one of the most interesting games of today's round: Kosintseva vs Lagno, White met the Najdorf with Fischer's old favourite 6.h3, which seems to enjoy a marked popularity lately. A shoulder to shoulder combat started, where White tried to prove the d5 square is a chronic weakness, crowning her strategy with a positional pawn sacrifice precisely on the same quadrate. But the Ukrainian didn't let her guard down, she took the offer, pulled-back White's compensation on the light squares and directed the game into a dead drawn opposite colour bishops endgame.


Luck is not on the Mongolian side so far

In the game between Tuvshintugs – Dzagnidze, Black treated the opening, a Queen's Indian Petrosian system (a2-a3) very provocatively, completely refraining from the fight for the center. Both players spend lots of time even before move 10 and somewhere after move 15, White started losing control. Dzagnidze won a pawn after an unclear tactical phase but failed to convert it into a winning advantage due to Tuvshintug's stubborn defense. A long discussion in a queen endgame followed, which seemed to be treated well by Tuvshintugs...but, after a long day of pressure applied by the Georgian GM, the tragedy happened: 98.Qh4? was fatal, handing in the point to Dzagnidze.


Only an apparently restful day after the rest day!

Round 5 SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name RtgSNo. 3   GM   Zhao Xue   2552   ½ - ½   GM   Kosteniuk Alexandra   2527 12 4   WGM   Girya Olga   2450   ½ - ½   GM   Ushenina Anna   2501 2 5   GM   Muzychuk Anna   2560   ½ - ½   GM   Stefanova Antoaneta   2489 1 6   GM   Hou Yifan   2618   1 – 0   WGM   Muminova Nafisa   2321 11 7   GM   Kosintseva Tatiana   2496   ½ - ½   GM   Lagno Kateryna   2543 10 8   WGM   Batchimeg Tuvshintugs   2340   0 – 1   GM   Dzagnidze Nana   2550 9


Official website

Round 5 Photo Gallery


Round 4: small changes at the top

The first player in this tournament to have thrown sand into Hou Yifan’s wheels was the Ukrainian GM, Lagno, who successfully hold the Chinese to a draw.

In the second position, just half a point behind the leader, advanced the Slovenian GM Muzychuk, who is now the proud holder of three points, after defeating Muminova.

Alone on 2.5 points and third place, comes Zhao Xue, after she drew her game against Ushenina. The fourth place is shared between five players on 50%: Lagno, Ushenina, Kosteniuk, Stefanova and Girya.

After losing their games today, Kosintseva and Muminova are on 1,5 points, as well as the Georgian GM, Dzagnidze, who recovered from a shaky start and won a well prepared game against Kosintseva. Last comes Tuvshintugs, on half a point, who hopes for better times after tomorrow’s rest day.

The first to press the break pedal on Hou Yifan’s string of victories was the Ukrainian Kateryna Lagno. Few had expected, though, that the crazy Benoni which appeared on the board would lead to a peaceful end by repetition, as early as move 24. This is the third game the Chinese finishes under 25 moves, an important detail, helping her to preserve energy. Hou Yifan employed a sharp line, entering early complications with a relatively new 12…Rxf4 (a positional exchange sacrifice), showing she is ready to play double edged positions, if this is what it takes to steal the point.



Although surprised by her opponent’s opening choice, Kateryna picked up the gauntlet but kept cool, assessing if the e4-e5 break was good or not along the way. Given the impossibility to foresee and evaluate all the branches of the tree, she restrained herself and brought home a well-fought half a point.

After the unpleasant attacking lesson from yesterday, the Georgian came back in full force for today’s game. The very good home preparation in the highly debated Ragozin soon paid off, as she knew what she was doing up to the 22nd move: f5. Kosintseva put her clock on fire, as she had to find over the board strong defensive but by no means obvious moves. Pressed by the horrendous time trouble, the Russian GM couldn’t keep pace anymore and collapsed under the skilfully exerted attack of her opponent.



An important victory for the Georgian GM, the first one for her this tournament, which brings her not only higher in the standings but also in a better mood right before the rest day.

Having had had three Whites in the first four rounds, Stefanova’s performance is a bit unconvincing so far. The terrible time troubles she entered, had an important word in it and, up to a certain point, today’s game against Olga Girya was no exception.



Although the Bulgarian GM did enter more serious theoretical discussion, meeting the Slav with the same kind of setup she had faced against Zhao Zxue yesterday, it didn’t have the desired effect. As the time was ticking faster and faster on her clock, Stefanova took too many risks, played the too ambitious 16.g4, followed by 17.Ne5, which were happily met by her opponent. As a consequence, Black’s coordination was highly superior, allowing her to win two pawns and it looked as if it would be all over soon. But Girya started playing slowly and in mutual time trouble the miracle happened: Stefanova saved half a point in a queen ending with a pawn down; “I guess I was the lucky one today and I definitely look forward to have some rest after four too long games in a row”(Antoaneta) – good timing, tomorrow we have a rest day.

The less topical line in the 4.e3 Nimzo employed by Zhao Xue (with 4…b6) was well met by Ushenina, who played creative chess. She sacrificed a pawn for advantage in development, space and attack and it seemed her strategy was well chosen as she got the upper hand. Under pressure, the Chinese defended well, missing though an interesting queen sacrifice on move 17.



She continued to suffer but managed to hold on to a draw, since Ushenina was not able to find better ways to increase the pressure. A draw was agreed after everything liquidated into an opposite colour bishops endgame.

A good way for the former women world champion to enter the rest day in good spirits: Kosteniuk defeated Tuvshintugs with a smart opening choice and is now back on 50%. She went for the Berlin with 4.d3, in her compatriot’s footsteps, Kosintseva, who had played the same yesterday, getting a winning position against Batchimeg.



If Kosintseva failed to win, Kosteniuk was in no mood to hand in presents and she convincingly increased her opening advantage. Soon the Mongolian went wrong, as the 5 minutes left on her clock for 20 moves were far too little for the complexity of the position. She lost a pawn, then an exchange and everything ended in an over the board tragedy.

In a game that made their trainers’ hair curl, Muminova vs Muzychuk was not a battle for the faint-hearted. After the rather modest and rare Sicilian setup, Muminova soon got into trouble under the Slovenian’s skilful wand.



The position of the Uzbek player went from bad to worse but she gave again a good account of herself by defending a bad position like a lioness! Muzychuk’s technique lacked the necessary precision, as she allowed her opponent to liquidate into a, let’s face it…”all the rook endgames are draw”. But practice shows that miracles can happen, especially with a little help. Under time pressure and after many hours of play and after defending again and again, Muminova collapsed in the end and Muzychuk grabbed the point.

These having been said, after today’s 4th round, we all (players, spectators, commentators) can happily go into a well deserved rest day.

ROUND 4 ON 2014/04/12 AT 15:00 SNO. NAMERTGRES. NAMERTGSNO. 12 GM Kosteniuk Alexandra 2527 1 – 0 WGM Batchimeg Tuvshintugs 2340 8 9 GM Dzagnidze Nana 2550 1 – 0 GM Kosintseva Tatiana 2496 7 10 GM Lagno Kateryna 2543 ½ - ½ GM Hou Yifan 2618 6 11 WGM Muminova Nafisa 2321 0 – 1 GM Muzychuk Anna 2560 5 1 GM Stefanova Antoaneta 2489 ½ - ½ WGM Girya Olga 2450 4 2 GM Ushenina Anna 2501 ½ - ½ GM Zhao Xue 2552 3



Official website

Round 4 Photo Gallery



Round 3: Hou Yifan – a full point ahead of her nearest rivals

In the 3rd round of the FIDE Women GP, Hou Yifan keeps the lead, the perfect score and our headline. She won a model game with White against the Georgian Nana Dzagnidze, scoring her third win in a row, running thus away from her nearest rivals, who are a full point behind. 

With two points out of three games are Zhao Xue, who won against Antoaneta Stefanova, and Anna Muzychuk, after her draw against Kateryna Lagno. They are closely followed by a large number of players on 50%: Anna Ushenina, Tatiana Kosintseva, Nafisa Muminova, Kateryna Lagno, Olga Girya and Antoaneta Stefanova.



On one point is Alexandra Kosteniuk, with two draws so far and with half a point on the scoreboard are: the player from Georgia, Nana Dzagnidze and the Mongolian Batchimeg Tuvshintugs, who broke the ice and scored the first draw.



For the Russians the day was a rather peaceful one, as all three Kosteniuk, Kosintseva and Girya drew today, not without some hair-raising moments though; Kosintseva and Girya missed good winning chances, but for Kosteniuk was a good day, as she escaped unpunished in her game against Ushenina.

The game of the reigning women world champion was definitely the highlight of today’s round and a good lesson to study for those who want to start up chess. She proved, if still necessary, great understanding on strategical level, when she forced Black to move away from a typical hedgehog into a worse position after having to play: 10…dxc6. The change in structure created new attacking ideas for White and the Chinese showed her masterclass in the sharp phase of the game as well. Hou Yifan didn’t fail to play one strong move after another: f4,e5, Ne4, culminating with the stunning f5 blow, followed by Rf5, Qh6, e6 – and the game soon ended in her favour, as early as move 24. Nice piece of calculation and powerful play from the Chinese, who is currently winning no less than 9.1 rating points in only three games.

After the many decisive games from the Khanty Mansiysk’s production line, it was about time, at least from a statistical point of view, for more draws to come. The first one of today occurred in the game between Muzychuk – Lagno, which, according to both players, was the logical and natural result of accurate play. The rather ‘peaceful’ 3. Bb5+ Sicilian was speeded up by the Slovenian GM who played creatively, employing an early 6.e5 and another pawn advance on the side of the board: 12. h4. Lagno didn’t fail this time to play the surgical 12…Nc6 (remember the first unfortunate game against Zhao Xue, when she played it one move too late), liquidated all the pieces, and, with a cleared board, the game ended in an inevitable draw.

The second draw of today was seen on the board of Girya – Muminova, where the Russian got an advantage out of the fashionable Queen’s Gambit opening with 5.Bf4, went on to win a precious pawn but soon entered a nail-biting time trouble, which didn’t allow her to convert the material. Muminova defended ferociously and, with less than a minute on the clock, Girya decided that safety comes first and agreed to a draw by repetition.



What could have been another bad day for the Mongolian player Tuvshintugs, turned into a happy one as she managed to escape the long lasting pressure of Kosintseva, breaking the ice and scoring her first half a point. For the Russian GM though, instead of receiving a nice present for her birthday, she gave one in return. The Berlin with 4.d3 went fine for her, but after White acquired the upper hand and later on a pawn, the advantage disappeared; with no pieces left on the board, the players had to agree a draw.

Things could have gone terribly wrong for Kosteniuk, in her direct encounter against another former women world champion, Ushenina. She suffered under the Ukrainian pressure in a typical isolated pawn position but, given the time trouble, Ushenina missed many winning opportunities along the way and even had to take care a bit in the endgame. After many hours of play, she had to admit there was nothing left to play for and accepted the draw.

The painful loss the Chinese suffered against Muminova yesterday, didn’t leave visible marks in Zhao’s play, as she confidently outplayed Stefanova in the Slav with 4.Qb3. Black’s lack in development had a great say in how White’s advantage increased with each move, reaching an inferior endgame for the Bulgarian player, who had to defend it with a pawn down. She succeed to keep the game going but after more than five hours of play, she had to admit defeat as Black, the first loss she suffers this tournament.

ROUND 3 ON 2014/04/11 AT 15:00 SNO. NAMERTGRES. NAMERTGSNO. 2 GM Ushenina Anna 2501 ½ - ½ GM Kosteniuk Alexandra 2527 12 3 GM Zhao Xue 2552 1 – 0 GM Stefanova Antoaneta 2489 1 4 WGM Girya Olga 2450 ½ - ½ WGM Muminova Nafisa 2321 11 5 GM Muzychuk Anna 2560 ½ - ½ GM Lagno Kateryna 2543 10 6 GM Hou Yifan 2618 1 – 0 GM Dzagnidze Nana 2550 9 7 GM Kosintseva Tatiana 2496 ½ - ½ WGM Batchimeg Tuvshintugs 2340 8


Official website

Round 3 Photo Gallery

 



Round 2: Hou Yifan in sole lead with a perfect 2/2 score


The history tends to repeat itself and chess is no exception: another cut-throat day, with no less than five decisive results and just one draw!

After the second round of the FIDE Women GP in Khanty Mansiysk, Hou Yifan is in sole lead with 2 points out of 2. She got an advance in development out of the opening, which Tuvshintugs was not able to neutralize. The spell was broken and the Black scored the first point in the tournament.


Perfect score for the Chinese GM: 2/2!

But the big upset of today's round was provided by Muminova who defeated Zhao Xue with the white pieces. What initially looked as a rather suspicious forth and back maneuver Bc1-e3-c1, escaped unpunished and even turned out to be completely justified after the subsequent 16.Bb2 and the strong 33.f4!


Nafisa Muminova was the surprise of today

Furthermore, in the Russian derby Kosteniuk – Kosintseva, Black won again, after a very sharp and interesting battle. In a Two Knights Game variation involving an early black pawn sacrifice, Kosintseva took over the initiative and after 35 moves proved that White's lack of development and poor coordination were fatal.

Similar story but with reversed colours, occurred in Lagno-Girya, featuring the same pattern with an uncastled king. Black played creatively yet risky, to which White fought back, found a nice antidote via an exchange sacrifice and went on to win the game in a a hopeless endgame for Black.


Lagno is back on 50% after today's win

In a game featuring mutual opening surprises, since both players were out of book on the 7th move, as they confessed during the press conference, Muzychuk equalized comfortably against the Georgian GM and seemed to apply some pressure in a preferable endgame. It proved not enough as Dzagnidze reacted in a surgical manner and went on to draw the game.

The last decisive result occurred in the direct encounter between two former women world champions: Stefanova vs Ushenina. The Bulgarian made us believe the position was a Reti, it moved into a Catalan/Slav sort of game and ended up in a Caro Kann, Advance variation structure – a true hybrid, as Stefanova tends to spoil her fans with her innovative play. The game faced a fierce strategical battle, which was greatly conducted by White and Black succumbed in the endgame, after a long day of pressure.

Round 2   SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name RtgSNo. 12   GM   Kosteniuk Alexandra   2527   0 – 1   GM   Kosintseva Tatiana   2496 7 8   WGM   Batchimeg Tuvshintugs   2340   0 – 1   GM   Hou Yifan   2618 6 9   GM   Dzagnidze Nana   2550   ½ - ½   GM   Muzychuk Anna   2560 5 10   GM   Lagno Kateryna   2543   1 – 0   WGM   Girya Olga   2450 4 11   WGM   Muminova Nafisa   2321   1 – 0   GM   Zhao Xue   2552 3 1   GM   Stefanova Antoaneta   2489   1 – 0   GM   Ushenina Anna   2501 2


Official website

Round 2 Photo Gallery



Round 1

White’s day: only Kosteniuk saved Black’s honour, escaping with a draw!

Maybe not many had expected to see so many decisive games straight from day one, but the women chess players proved they can play very interesting, fighting chess that is definitely worth watching! White won five out of the six games, to which maybe a little help, on a symbolic level, came from none other than the Mayor and the President of the Ugra Chess Federation, Vasiliy Filipenko himself. The Mayor opened the Women GP's first round by playing the first move on Hou Yifan's board. "I made the first move in the Candidates, on the board of Anand and he went on to win the event. Maybe this little detail will prove to be a talisman for Hou Yifan as well?" It certainly was, as the Chinese came out on top in a Catalan type of position against Kosintseva, where she won two pawns and soon after, the game. 



Since it was obviously White's day, for one of the three Russian players in the field, who was facing Black, things could have gone terribly wrong. In the game against the former world champion, Antoaneta Stefanova, Kosteniuk seemed to have been close to equalize but in the subsequent time trouble, Stefanova made all of us think she will win the game. But on move 58 all White's advantage vanished, when Antoaneta played: 58.f8Q, blundering 58...Nd5+. After a fierce struggle and a persistent defense, the former world champion escaped with a draw and saved Black's honour as well!



The third Russian player in the field, Olga Girya, made the day for the local supporters by winning against Nana Dzagnidze in a crazy game. The initially doubtful compensation for the sacrificed pawn in the Nimzo Opening, turned out to be a killing one in the subsequent time trouble and Olga took home the point.

Another game won by White was in the encounter between Zhao Xue and Kateryna Lagno, where the blame was put, as both players shared during the press conference, on the unfortunate Black's 15th move: 15...e4. This allowed White to seize the initiative and in the end, to win the game.

In the first game they ever played against each other, Anna Ushenina defeated the WGM from Uzbekistan, Nafisa Muminova, in a typical Saemisch structure from the Nimzo opening, the second one of today's round. After a small inaccuracy from the Ukrainian player, who pressed the entire game, Muminova seemed to be close to a draw in a rook endgame. She soon returned the favour though and Ushenina proved her technique was good enough to secure the point.

The last, but not least, game of today ended again in White's favour. Although the way Anna Muzychuk conducted the play gave the impression she will slowly but surely win the game, there was a small moment which could have been fatal for her. After many hours of play and with only 30 seconds on the clock, the Slovenian player offered a big present to her opponent, who could have drawn on move 75 by perpetual check. But the favour was not accepted, Tuvshintugs took a piece instead but the effective army of White's pawns decided soon the game.

This was the bloody story of the first round, which makes us all hope for even more fighting games in the forthcoming days! 

Round 1   SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1   GM   Stefanova Antoaneta   2489   ½ - ½   GM   Kosteniuk Alexandra   2527   12 2   GM   Ushenina Anna   2501   1 – 0   WGM   Muminova Nafisa   2321   11 3   GM   Zhao Xue   2552   1 – 0   GM   Lagno Kateryna   2543   10 4   WGM   Girya Olga   2450   1 – 0   GM   Dzagnidze Nana   2550   9 5   GM   Muzychuk Anna   2560   1 – 0   WGM   Batchimeg Tuvshintugs   2340   8 6   GM   Hou Yifan   2618   1 – 0   GM   Kosintseva Tatiana   2496   7

Official website

Round 1 Photo Gallery

Women's FIDE Grand Prix stage started in Khanty-Mansiysk

The fourth stage of the women’s FIDE Grand Prix officially opened today in Khanty-Mansiysk. A concert where the main character was a unique musical instrument – an organ, was organized for the participants and guests of the tournament.

12 chess players representing 8 countries of the world will participate in the competition that will take place until the 21st of April.

Women Grand Prix is a series of six tournaments that are being held over a two years period. The tournament uses round robin system. The time control for each player is 90 minutes for 40 moves, then 30 minutes for the rest of the game with 30 seconds increment after each move.

In his welcome address Director of Physical Culture and Sports Department of Ugra Evgeniy Redkin wished everyone an interesting tournament.

“I wish that the stage in Khanty-Mansiysk would help you score more points in the overall standings and fight for the main prize of FIDE Grand Prix 2013/14. It should be noted that during the last month the attention of chess fans all over the world was focused on Khanty-Mansiysk. Now we will have Grand Prix, and it will be followed by FIDE Women’s World Rapid and Blitz Championships, once again proving the words of FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov: “Khanty-Mansiysk is a chess Mecca”. I hope that participants will not only be interested in playing in the tournament, but will have time to visit all the tourist sights of the city”, – said Evgeniy Redkin.



The Head of Khanty-Mansiyks, President of Ugra Chess Federation Vasily Filipenko recalled that “chess spring” continues in Khanty-Mansiysk. “Today I welcome the best women chess players of the planet in the capital of Ugra. In the words of a famous poet, a woman can stop a galloping horse, and the participants of the tournament can even capture a knight! I wish everyone success and beautiful games”, – summed the mayor.

FIDE CEO Geoffrey Borg congratulated the participants and all chess spectators with the start of another Grand Prix stage.



Drawing of lots for the tournament was held during the opening ceremony. So, the pairs of the first round are:

Antoaneta Stefanova – Alexandra Kosteniuk

Anna Ushenina – Nafisa Muminova

Zhao Xue – Kateryna Lagno

Olga Girya – Nana Dzagnidze

Batchimeg Tuvshintugs – Anna Muzychuk

Tatiana Kosintseva – Hou Yifan



The opening ceremony was followed by a concert. Chamber Music Ensemble “Canzone” performed world classics. Opera vocal sketches alternated magical organ sounds, live chess pieces took the stage, reminding the audience that very soon new chess battles will start in Khanty-Mansiysk.


Official website http://khantymansiysk2014.fide.com/

Congratulations to Garry Kasparov on his birthday



Dear Garry Kimovich,

Let me wish you the best of health and success on behalf of the International Chess Federation and from myself personally!
Kindly accept my wishes of happiness and prosperity to you and those dear to you!


Sincerely,

Kirsan Ilyumzhinov
FIDE President

Women's FIDE Grand Prix in Khanty-Mansiysk: Round 5



An apparently pacific 5th round


After the rest day, the podium remains unaltered: Hou Yifan cruises to another win against Nafisa Muminova, running with a full point away from Anna Muzychuk. The Slovenian GM drew Antoaneta Stefanova, being on the second place unshared with 3.5 points.

Third comes Zhao Xue with three points after her draw against Alexandra Kosteniuk. Just half a point behind follows the platoon with 2.5/5: Kateryna Lagno, Antoaneta Stefanova, Alexandra Kosteniuk, Olga Girya, Anna Ushenina and Nana Dzagnidze, who climbed her way up to 50%, after receiving a present from Batchimeg Tuvshintugs in a cliff-hanging queen endgame.

On two points is the Russian GM, Tatiana Kosintseva, who didn't break the Ukrainian defense (Kateryna Lagno), followed by Nafisa Muminova on 1.5 and Batchimeg Tuvshintugs with 0.5, who strikes a bad patch.

The fifth round saw a relatively high drawing rate: four out of six, although it should have been five... The same as in round three, all the Russian players drew, not before all the possibilities had been exhausted. The apparently peaceful results right after the free day, may suggest that by having relaxed a bit the players increased their accuracy in all phases of the game, including defense.


The players and media alike enjoying the rest day!

After four long and hard fought games, Stefanova thought it was about time to spare her energy and finished first today, drawing against Muzychuk with Black. Although at first glance it looked like a game completely lacking fireworks, you will be surprised by the inventiveness the Bulgarian always keeps in her pockets.


Antoaneta Stefanova's shortest game so far

Today she chose a rather unorthodox way to play the Scotch, with 4...Bb4+, which worked perfectly well for her. Black equalized quickly, much to the despair of Muzychuk, who surely had hoped for more as White. Further on, it could have been a total war zone, after the eccentric but very strong rook maneuver, via b8-b5-h5, looking forward to blow the position with g5, g4... Stefanova said at the press conference. But after the safe 18.Nf1, killing any attacking idea, and followed by the queens' exchange, the game ended up in a rook endgame. The logical and expected result: a draw by repetition.

Shall we be surprised that Hou Yifan played another model game in the Catalan, winning her fourth game already? Noteworthy is the first move 1.c4, which she copy-pasted after her first round win against Kosintseva.


Hou Yifan cruises to another win, consolidating her sole lead, by restoring the advance of a full point over the second place.

The Chinese mastered the new opening and middle game almost perfectly, thus proving that she had thrown another lethal rifle in her weaponry. She sacrificed a pawn early in the opening, gained an advance in development and gradually took over the control of the whole board. In the final phase, the doubled rooks on the seventh rank completely paralyzed her opponent, culminating with the simple but nevertheless elegant Queen sacrifice Qxf8+! Facing inevitable mate, Muminova had to sign the scoresheet below a zero.


Grandmasters in deep concentration

In China against Russia today, the game started fresh, as early as move 4. Zhao Xue continued in a very original manner, but perhaps a bit too slow for claiming an advantage. The plan b4-b5 is typical for these positions but Kosteniuk reacted well and neutralized all the threats. After 34 moves and 3.5 hours of play, the strategical battle ended in the correct: draw. As a coincidence, the last move of the game was a back rank queen check, the same as in her compatriot's game, Hou Yifan.

If in the previous rounds Girya's technique didn't deliver the expected results, in today's game against Ushenina she turned the tables around by saving a difficult position.


Olga Girya fighting her way back in a difficult position

The new trend in Cambridge Springs used by Ushenina today worked wonders, especially after the little help from her opponent, which started with the less fortunate 16.a3. But the clock was ticking mercilessly and the Ukrainian didn't find the most precise way to convert the advantage, having to go content herself with bringing home only a draw.


Tatiana Kosintseva came well armed for a potentially long fight against Kateryna Lagno

In one of the most interesting games of today's round: Kosintseva vs Lagno, White met the Najdorf with Fischer's old favourite 6.h3, which seems to enjoy a marked popularity lately. A shoulder to shoulder combat started, where White tried to prove the d5 square is a chronic weakness, crowning her strategy with a positional pawn sacrifice precisely on the same quadrate. But the Ukrainian didn't let her guard down, she took the offer, pulled-back White's compensation on the light squares and directed the game into a dead drawn opposite colour bishops endgame.


Luck is not on the Mongolian side so far

In the game between Tuvshintugs – Dzagnidze, Black treated the opening, a Queen's Indian Petrosian system (a2-a3) very provocatively, completely refraining from the fight for the center. Both players spend lots of time even before move 10 and somewhere after move 15, White started losing control. Dzagnidze won a pawn after an unclear tactical phase but failed to convert it into a winning advantage due to Tuvshintug's stubborn defense. A long discussion in a queen endgame followed, which seemed to be treated well by Tuvshintugs...but, after a long day of pressure applied by the Georgian GM, the tragedy happened: 98.Qh4? was fatal, handing in the point to Dzagnidze.


Only an apparently restful day after the rest day!

Round 5 SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name RtgSNo. 3   GM   Zhao Xue   2552   ½ - ½   GM   Kosteniuk Alexandra   2527 12 4   WGM   Girya Olga   2450   ½ - ½   GM   Ushenina Anna   2501 2 5   GM   Muzychuk Anna   2560   ½ - ½   GM   Stefanova Antoaneta   2489 1 6   GM   Hou Yifan   2618   1 – 0   WGM   Muminova Nafisa   2321 11 7   GM   Kosintseva Tatiana   2496   ½ - ½   GM   Lagno Kateryna   2543 10 8   WGM   Batchimeg Tuvshintugs   2340   0 – 1   GM   Dzagnidze Nana   2550 9


Official website

Round 5 Photo Gallery


Round 4: small changes at the top

The first player in this tournament to have thrown sand into Hou Yifan’s wheels was the Ukrainian GM, Lagno, who successfully hold the Chinese to a draw.

In the second position, just half a point behind the leader, advanced the Slovenian GM Muzychuk, who is now the proud holder of three points, after defeating Muminova.

Alone on 2.5 points and third place, comes Zhao Xue, after she drew her game against Ushenina. The fourth place is shared between five players on 50%: Lagno, Ushenina, Kosteniuk, Stefanova and Girya.

After losing their games today, Kosintseva and Muminova are on 1,5 points, as well as the Georgian GM, Dzagnidze, who recovered from a shaky start and won a well prepared game against Kosintseva. Last comes Tuvshintugs, on half a point, who hopes for better times after tomorrow’s rest day.

The first to press the break pedal on Hou Yifan’s string of victories was the Ukrainian Kateryna Lagno. Few had expected, though, that the crazy Benoni which appeared on the board would lead to a peaceful end by repetition, as early as move 24. This is the third game the Chinese finishes under 25 moves, an important detail, helping her to preserve energy. Hou Yifan employed a sharp line, entering early complications with a relatively new 12…Rxf4 (a positional exchange sacrifice), showing she is ready to play double edged positions, if this is what it takes to steal the point.



Although surprised by her opponent’s opening choice, Kateryna picked up the gauntlet but kept cool, assessing if the e4-e5 break was good or not along the way. Given the impossibility to foresee and evaluate all the branches of the tree, she restrained herself and brought home a well-fought half a point.

After the unpleasant attacking lesson from yesterday, the Georgian came back in full force for today’s game. The very good home preparation in the highly debated Ragozin soon paid off, as she knew what she was doing up to the 22nd move: f5. Kosintseva put her clock on fire, as she had to find over the board strong defensive but by no means obvious moves. Pressed by the horrendous time trouble, the Russian GM couldn’t keep pace anymore and collapsed under the skilfully exerted attack of her opponent.



An important victory for the Georgian GM, the first one for her this tournament, which brings her not only higher in the standings but also in a better mood right before the rest day.

Having had had three Whites in the first four rounds, Stefanova’s performance is a bit unconvincing so far. The terrible time troubles she entered, had an important word in it and, up to a certain point, today’s game against Olga Girya was no exception.



Although the Bulgarian GM did enter more serious theoretical discussion, meeting the Slav with the same kind of setup she had faced against Zhao Zxue yesterday, it didn’t have the desired effect. As the time was ticking faster and faster on her clock, Stefanova took too many risks, played the too ambitious 16.g4, followed by 17.Ne5, which were happily met by her opponent. As a consequence, Black’s coordination was highly superior, allowing her to win two pawns and it looked as if it would be all over soon. But Girya started playing slowly and in mutual time trouble the miracle happened: Stefanova saved half a point in a queen ending with a pawn down; “I guess I was the lucky one today and I definitely look forward to have some rest after four too long games in a row”(Antoaneta) – good timing, tomorrow we have a rest day.

The less topical line in the 4.e3 Nimzo employed by Zhao Xue (with 4…b6) was well met by Ushenina, who played creative chess. She sacrificed a pawn for advantage in development, space and attack and it seemed her strategy was well chosen as she got the upper hand. Under pressure, the Chinese defended well, missing though an interesting queen sacrifice on move 17.



She continued to suffer but managed to hold on to a draw, since Ushenina was not able to find better ways to increase the pressure. A draw was agreed after everything liquidated into an opposite colour bishops endgame.

A good way for the former women world champion to enter the rest day in good spirits: Kosteniuk defeated Tuvshintugs with a smart opening choice and is now back on 50%. She went for the Berlin with 4.d3, in her compatriot’s footsteps, Kosintseva, who had played the same yesterday, getting a winning position against Batchimeg.



If Kosintseva failed to win, Kosteniuk was in no mood to hand in presents and she convincingly increased her opening advantage. Soon the Mongolian went wrong, as the 5 minutes left on her clock for 20 moves were far too little for the complexity of the position. She lost a pawn, then an exchange and everything ended in an over the board tragedy.

In a game that made their trainers’ hair curl, Muminova vs Muzychuk was not a battle for the faint-hearted. After the rather modest and rare Sicilian setup, Muminova soon got into trouble under the Slovenian’s skilful wand.



The position of the Uzbek player went from bad to worse but she gave again a good account of herself by defending a bad position like a lioness! Muzychuk’s technique lacked the necessary precision, as she allowed her opponent to liquidate into a, let’s face it…”all the rook endgames are draw”. But practice shows that miracles can happen, especially with a little help. Under time pressure and after many hours of play and after defending again and again, Muminova collapsed in the end and Muzychuk grabbed the point.

These having been said, after today’s 4th round, we all (players, spectators, commentators) can happily go into a well deserved rest day.

ROUND 4 ON 2014/04/12 AT 15:00 SNO. NAMERTGRES. NAMERTGSNO. 12 GM Kosteniuk Alexandra 2527 1 – 0 WGM Batchimeg Tuvshintugs 2340 8 9 GM Dzagnidze Nana 2550 1 – 0 GM Kosintseva Tatiana 2496 7 10 GM Lagno Kateryna 2543 ½ - ½ GM Hou Yifan 2618 6 11 WGM Muminova Nafisa 2321 0 – 1 GM Muzychuk Anna 2560 5 1 GM Stefanova Antoaneta 2489 ½ - ½ WGM Girya Olga 2450 4 2 GM Ushenina Anna 2501 ½ - ½ GM Zhao Xue 2552 3



Official website

Round 4 Photo Gallery



Round 3: Hou Yifan – a full point ahead of her nearest rivals

In the 3rd round of the FIDE Women GP, Hou Yifan keeps the lead, the perfect score and our headline. She won a model game with White against the Georgian Nana Dzagnidze, scoring her third win in a row, running thus away from her nearest rivals, who are a full point behind. 

With two points out of three games are Zhao Xue, who won against Antoaneta Stefanova, and Anna Muzychuk, after her draw against Kateryna Lagno. They are closely followed by a large number of players on 50%: Anna Ushenina, Tatiana Kosintseva, Nafisa Muminova, Kateryna Lagno, Olga Girya and Antoaneta Stefanova.



On one point is Alexandra Kosteniuk, with two draws so far and with half a point on the scoreboard are: the player from Georgia, Nana Dzagnidze and the Mongolian Batchimeg Tuvshintugs, who broke the ice and scored the first draw.



For the Russians the day was a rather peaceful one, as all three Kosteniuk, Kosintseva and Girya drew today, not without some hair-raising moments though; Kosintseva and Girya missed good winning chances, but for Kosteniuk was a good day, as she escaped unpunished in her game against Ushenina.

The game of the reigning women world champion was definitely the highlight of today’s round and a good lesson to study for those who want to start up chess. She proved, if still necessary, great understanding on strategical level, when she forced Black to move away from a typical hedgehog into a worse position after having to play: 10…dxc6. The change in structure created new attacking ideas for White and the Chinese showed her masterclass in the sharp phase of the game as well. Hou Yifan didn’t fail to play one strong move after another: f4,e5, Ne4, culminating with the stunning f5 blow, followed by Rf5, Qh6, e6 – and the game soon ended in her favour, as early as move 24. Nice piece of calculation and powerful play from the Chinese, who is currently winning no less than 9.1 rating points in only three games.

After the many decisive games from the Khanty Mansiysk’s production line, it was about time, at least from a statistical point of view, for more draws to come. The first one of today occurred in the game between Muzychuk – Lagno, which, according to both players, was the logical and natural result of accurate play. The rather ‘peaceful’ 3. Bb5+ Sicilian was speeded up by the Slovenian GM who played creatively, employing an early 6.e5 and another pawn advance on the side of the board: 12. h4. Lagno didn’t fail this time to play the surgical 12…Nc6 (remember the first unfortunate game against Zhao Xue, when she played it one move too late), liquidated all the pieces, and, with a cleared board, the game ended in an inevitable draw.

The second draw of today was seen on the board of Girya – Muminova, where the Russian got an advantage out of the fashionable Queen’s Gambit opening with 5.Bf4, went on to win a precious pawn but soon entered a nail-biting time trouble, which didn’t allow her to convert the material. Muminova defended ferociously and, with less than a minute on the clock, Girya decided that safety comes first and agreed to a draw by repetition.



What could have been another bad day for the Mongolian player Tuvshintugs, turned into a happy one as she managed to escape the long lasting pressure of Kosintseva, breaking the ice and scoring her first half a point. For the Russian GM though, instead of receiving a nice present for her birthday, she gave one in return. The Berlin with 4.d3 went fine for her, but after White acquired the upper hand and later on a pawn, the advantage disappeared; with no pieces left on the board, the players had to agree a draw.

Things could have gone terribly wrong for Kosteniuk, in her direct encounter against another former women world champion, Ushenina. She suffered under the Ukrainian pressure in a typical isolated pawn position but, given the time trouble, Ushenina missed many winning opportunities along the way and even had to take care a bit in the endgame. After many hours of play, she had to admit there was nothing left to play for and accepted the draw.

The painful loss the Chinese suffered against Muminova yesterday, didn’t leave visible marks in Zhao’s play, as she confidently outplayed Stefanova in the Slav with 4.Qb3. Black’s lack in development had a great say in how White’s advantage increased with each move, reaching an inferior endgame for the Bulgarian player, who had to defend it with a pawn down. She succeed to keep the game going but after more than five hours of play, she had to admit defeat as Black, the first loss she suffers this tournament.

ROUND 3 ON 2014/04/11 AT 15:00 SNO. NAMERTGRES. NAMERTGSNO. 2 GM Ushenina Anna 2501 ½ - ½ GM Kosteniuk Alexandra 2527 12 3 GM Zhao Xue 2552 1 – 0 GM Stefanova Antoaneta 2489 1 4 WGM Girya Olga 2450 ½ - ½ WGM Muminova Nafisa 2321 11 5 GM Muzychuk Anna 2560 ½ - ½ GM Lagno Kateryna 2543 10 6 GM Hou Yifan 2618 1 – 0 GM Dzagnidze Nana 2550 9 7 GM Kosintseva Tatiana 2496 ½ - ½ WGM Batchimeg Tuvshintugs 2340 8


Official website

Round 3 Photo Gallery

 



Round 2: Hou Yifan in sole lead with a perfect 2/2 score


The history tends to repeat itself and chess is no exception: another cut-throat day, with no less than five decisive results and just one draw!

After the second round of the FIDE Women GP in Khanty Mansiysk, Hou Yifan is in sole lead with 2 points out of 2. She got an advance in development out of the opening, which Tuvshintugs was not able to neutralize. The spell was broken and the Black scored the first point in the tournament.


Perfect score for the Chinese GM: 2/2!

But the big upset of today's round was provided by Muminova who defeated Zhao Xue with the white pieces. What initially looked as a rather suspicious forth and back maneuver Bc1-e3-c1, escaped unpunished and even turned out to be completely justified after the subsequent 16.Bb2 and the strong 33.f4!


Nafisa Muminova was the surprise of today

Furthermore, in the Russian derby Kosteniuk – Kosintseva, Black won again, after a very sharp and interesting battle. In a Two Knights Game variation involving an early black pawn sacrifice, Kosintseva took over the initiative and after 35 moves proved that White's lack of development and poor coordination were fatal.

Similar story but with reversed colours, occurred in Lagno-Girya, featuring the same pattern with an uncastled king. Black played creatively yet risky, to which White fought back, found a nice antidote via an exchange sacrifice and went on to win the game in a a hopeless endgame for Black.


Lagno is back on 50% after today's win

In a game featuring mutual opening surprises, since both players were out of book on the 7th move, as they confessed during the press conference, Muzychuk equalized comfortably against the Georgian GM and seemed to apply some pressure in a preferable endgame. It proved not enough as Dzagnidze reacted in a surgical manner and went on to draw the game.

The last decisive result occurred in the direct encounter between two former women world champions: Stefanova vs Ushenina. The Bulgarian made us believe the position was a Reti, it moved into a Catalan/Slav sort of game and ended up in a Caro Kann, Advance variation structure – a true hybrid, as Stefanova tends to spoil her fans with her innovative play. The game faced a fierce strategical battle, which was greatly conducted by White and Black succumbed in the endgame, after a long day of pressure.

Round 2   SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name RtgSNo. 12   GM   Kosteniuk Alexandra   2527   0 – 1   GM   Kosintseva Tatiana   2496 7 8   WGM   Batchimeg Tuvshintugs   2340   0 – 1   GM   Hou Yifan   2618 6 9   GM   Dzagnidze Nana   2550   ½ - ½   GM   Muzychuk Anna   2560 5 10   GM   Lagno Kateryna   2543   1 – 0   WGM   Girya Olga   2450 4 11   WGM   Muminova Nafisa   2321   1 – 0   GM   Zhao Xue   2552 3 1   GM   Stefanova Antoaneta   2489   1 – 0   GM   Ushenina Anna   2501 2


Official website

Round 2 Photo Gallery



Round 1

White’s day: only Kosteniuk saved Black’s honour, escaping with a draw!

Maybe not many had expected to see so many decisive games straight from day one, but the women chess players proved they can play very interesting, fighting chess that is definitely worth watching! White won five out of the six games, to which maybe a little help, on a symbolic level, came from none other than the Mayor and the President of the Ugra Chess Federation, Vasiliy Filipenko himself. The Mayor opened the Women GP's first round by playing the first move on Hou Yifan's board. "I made the first move in the Candidates, on the board of Anand and he went on to win the event. Maybe this little detail will prove to be a talisman for Hou Yifan as well?" It certainly was, as the Chinese came out on top in a Catalan type of position against Kosintseva, where she won two pawns and soon after, the game. 



Since it was obviously White's day, for one of the three Russian players in the field, who was facing Black, things could have gone terribly wrong. In the game against the former world champion, Antoaneta Stefanova, Kosteniuk seemed to have been close to equalize but in the subsequent time trouble, Stefanova made all of us think she will win the game. But on move 58 all White's advantage vanished, when Antoaneta played: 58.f8Q, blundering 58...Nd5+. After a fierce struggle and a persistent defense, the former world champion escaped with a draw and saved Black's honour as well!



The third Russian player in the field, Olga Girya, made the day for the local supporters by winning against Nana Dzagnidze in a crazy game. The initially doubtful compensation for the sacrificed pawn in the Nimzo Opening, turned out to be a killing one in the subsequent time trouble and Olga took home the point.

Another game won by White was in the encounter between Zhao Xue and Kateryna Lagno, where the blame was put, as both players shared during the press conference, on the unfortunate Black's 15th move: 15...e4. This allowed White to seize the initiative and in the end, to win the game.

In the first game they ever played against each other, Anna Ushenina defeated the WGM from Uzbekistan, Nafisa Muminova, in a typical Saemisch structure from the Nimzo opening, the second one of today's round. After a small inaccuracy from the Ukrainian player, who pressed the entire game, Muminova seemed to be close to a draw in a rook endgame. She soon returned the favour though and Ushenina proved her technique was good enough to secure the point.

The last, but not least, game of today ended again in White's favour. Although the way Anna Muzychuk conducted the play gave the impression she will slowly but surely win the game, there was a small moment which could have been fatal for her. After many hours of play and with only 30 seconds on the clock, the Slovenian player offered a big present to her opponent, who could have drawn on move 75 by perpetual check. But the favour was not accepted, Tuvshintugs took a piece instead but the effective army of White's pawns decided soon the game.

This was the bloody story of the first round, which makes us all hope for even more fighting games in the forthcoming days! 

Round 1   SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1   GM   Stefanova Antoaneta   2489   ½ - ½   GM   Kosteniuk Alexandra   2527   12 2   GM   Ushenina Anna   2501   1 – 0   WGM   Muminova Nafisa   2321   11 3   GM   Zhao Xue   2552   1 – 0   GM   Lagno Kateryna   2543   10 4   WGM   Girya Olga   2450   1 – 0   GM   Dzagnidze Nana   2550   9 5   GM   Muzychuk Anna   2560   1 – 0   WGM   Batchimeg Tuvshintugs   2340   8 6   GM   Hou Yifan   2618   1 – 0   GM   Kosintseva Tatiana   2496   7

Official website

Round 1 Photo Gallery

Women's FIDE Grand Prix stage started in Khanty-Mansiysk

The fourth stage of the women’s FIDE Grand Prix officially opened today in Khanty-Mansiysk. A concert where the main character was a unique musical instrument – an organ, was organized for the participants and guests of the tournament.

12 chess players representing 8 countries of the world will participate in the competition that will take place until the 21st of April.

Women Grand Prix is a series of six tournaments that are being held over a two years period. The tournament uses round robin system. The time control for each player is 90 minutes for 40 moves, then 30 minutes for the rest of the game with 30 seconds increment after each move.

In his welcome address Director of Physical Culture and Sports Department of Ugra Evgeniy Redkin wished everyone an interesting tournament.

“I wish that the stage in Khanty-Mansiysk would help you score more points in the overall standings and fight for the main prize of FIDE Grand Prix 2013/14. It should be noted that during the last month the attention of chess fans all over the world was focused on Khanty-Mansiysk. Now we will have Grand Prix, and it will be followed by FIDE Women’s World Rapid and Blitz Championships, once again proving the words of FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov: “Khanty-Mansiysk is a chess Mecca”. I hope that participants will not only be interested in playing in the tournament, but will have time to visit all the tourist sights of the city”, – said Evgeniy Redkin.



The Head of Khanty-Mansiyks, President of Ugra Chess Federation Vasily Filipenko recalled that “chess spring” continues in Khanty-Mansiysk. “Today I welcome the best women chess players of the planet in the capital of Ugra. In the words of a famous poet, a woman can stop a galloping horse, and the participants of the tournament can even capture a knight! I wish everyone success and beautiful games”, – summed the mayor.

FIDE CEO Geoffrey Borg congratulated the participants and all chess spectators with the start of another Grand Prix stage.



Drawing of lots for the tournament was held during the opening ceremony. So, the pairs of the first round are:

Antoaneta Stefanova – Alexandra Kosteniuk

Anna Ushenina – Nafisa Muminova

Zhao Xue – Kateryna Lagno

Olga Girya – Nana Dzagnidze

Batchimeg Tuvshintugs – Anna Muzychuk

Tatiana Kosintseva – Hou Yifan



The opening ceremony was followed by a concert. Chamber Music Ensemble “Canzone” performed world classics. Opera vocal sketches alternated magical organ sounds, live chess pieces took the stage, reminding the audience that very soon new chess battles will start in Khanty-Mansiysk.


Official website http://khantymansiysk2014.fide.com/

FIDE President in Philippines



On April 11 the FIDE President arrived to Manila where he met with Florencio Campomanes Jr. and Irma Campomanes. Kirsan Ilyumzhinov spoke about about the Chess in Schools Programme, perspectives of chess to join the Oympic family and other priority goals of FIDE. It was also noted that Kirsan Ilyumzhinov will be a sponsor of Campomanes Memorial which will be held this autumn in Indonesia. It was agreed during the meeting in Jakarta with the President of Indonesian Chess Federation Hashim Djojohadikusumo. The spouse of the 5th FIDE President Irma and his son Florencio expressed a great pleasure to meet the FIDE delegation. At the meeting were also present FIDE CEO Geoffrey Borg, Vice President of Asian Chess Federation Casto Abundo, FIDE President’s Assistant Berik Balgabaev and Philippine journalists.
Today FIDE delegation is planning to have a meeting with Vice President of the country Jejomar Binay which will be followed by the official dinner on behalf of the Chairman of the Philippines Sports Commission Ricardo Garcia, expected to join Tom Carrasco, Chairman of NOC, Wigberto "Yggy" Clavecilla, commissioner, Nikolai Kudashev, Russia’s Ambassador in Philippines. Also President Ilyumzhinov had meetings with the members of Chess Federation of Philippines: GM Jayson Gonzalez, Executive Director, Mayor Rommel Tacorda, member of Executive Board of federation.


Berik Balgabaev, Geoffrey Borg, Casto Abundo, Rommel Tacorda, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov


Meeting with the members of Philippines Chess Federation


With Florencio Campomanes Jr. and Irma Campomanes

Women's FIDE Grand Prix in Khanty-Mansiysk: Round 4



Round 4: small changes at the top

The first player in this tournament to have thrown sand into Hou Yifan’s wheels was the Ukrainian GM, Lagno, who successfully hold the Chinese to a draw.

In the second position, just half a point behind the leader, advanced the Slovenian GM Muzychuk, who is now the proud holder of three points, after defeating Muminova.

Alone on 2.5 points and third place, comes Zhao Xue, after she drew her game against Ushenina. The fourth place is shared between five players on 50%: Lagno, Ushenina, Kosteniuk, Stefanova and Girya.

After losing their games today, Kosintseva and Muminova are on 1,5 points, as well as the Georgian GM, Dzagnidze, who recovered from a shaky start and won a well prepared game against Kosintseva. Last comes Tuvshintugs, on half a point, who hopes for better times after tomorrow’s rest day.

The first to press the break pedal on Hou Yifan’s string of victories was the Ukrainian Kateryna Lagno. Few had expected, though, that the crazy Benoni which appeared on the board would lead to a peaceful end by repetition, as early as move 24. This is the third game the Chinese finishes under 25 moves, an important detail, helping her to preserve energy. Hou Yifan employed a sharp line, entering early complications with a relatively new 12…Rxf4 (a positional exchange sacrifice), showing she is ready to play double edged positions, if this is what it takes to steal the point.



Although surprised by her opponent’s opening choice, Kateryna picked up the gauntlet but kept cool, assessing if the e4-e5 break was good or not along the way. Given the impossibility to foresee and evaluate all the branches of the tree, she restrained herself and brought home a well-fought half a point.

After the unpleasant attacking lesson from yesterday, the Georgian came back in full force for today’s game. The very good home preparation in the highly debated Ragozin soon paid off, as she knew what she was doing up to the 22nd move: f5. Kosintseva put her clock on fire, as she had to find over the board strong defensive but by no means obvious moves. Pressed by the horrendous time trouble, the Russian GM couldn’t keep pace anymore and collapsed under the skilfully exerted attack of her opponent.



An important victory for the Georgian GM, the first one for her this tournament, which brings her not only higher in the standings but also in a better mood right before the rest day.

Having had had three Whites in the first four rounds, Stefanova’s performance is a bit unconvincing so far. The terrible time troubles she entered, had an important word in it and, up to a certain point, today’s game against Olga Girya was no exception.



Although the Bulgarian GM did enter more serious theoretical discussion, meeting the Slav with the same kind of setup she had faced against Zhao Zxue yesterday, it didn’t have the desired effect. As the time was ticking faster and faster on her clock, Stefanova took too many risks, played the too ambitious 16.g4, followed by 17.Ne5, which were happily met by her opponent. As a consequence, Black’s coordination was highly superior, allowing her to win two pawns and it looked as if it would be all over soon. But Girya started playing slowly and in mutual time trouble the miracle happened: Stefanova saved half a point in a queen ending with a pawn down; “I guess I was the lucky one today and I definitely look forward to have some rest after four too long games in a row”(Antoaneta) – good timing, tomorrow we have a rest day.

The less topical line in the 4.e3 Nimzo employed by Zhao Xue (with 4…b6) was well met by Ushenina, who played creative chess. She sacrificed a pawn for advantage in development, space and attack and it seemed her strategy was well chosen as she got the upper hand. Under pressure, the Chinese defended well, missing though an interesting queen sacrifice on move 17.



She continued to suffer but managed to hold on to a draw, since Ushenina was not able to find better ways to increase the pressure. A draw was agreed after everything liquidated into an opposite colour bishops endgame.

A good way for the former women world champion to enter the rest day in good spirits: Kosteniuk defeated Tuvshintugs with a smart opening choice and is now back on 50%. She went for the Berlin with 4.d3, in her compatriot’s footsteps, Kosintseva, who had played the same yesterday, getting a winning position against Batchimeg.



If Kosintseva failed to win, Kosteniuk was in no mood to hand in presents and she convincingly increased her opening advantage. Soon the Mongolian went wrong, as the 5 minutes left on her clock for 20 moves were far too little for the complexity of the position. She lost a pawn, then an exchange and everything ended in an over the board tragedy.

In a game that made their trainers’ hair curl, Muminova vs Muzychuk was not a battle for the faint-hearted. After the rather modest and rare Sicilian setup, Muminova soon got into trouble under the Slovenian’s skilful wand.



The position of the Uzbek player went from bad to worse but she gave again a good account of herself by defending a bad position like a lioness! Muzychuk’s technique lacked the necessary precision, as she allowed her opponent to liquidate into a, let’s face it…”all the rook endgames are draw”. But practice shows that miracles can happen, especially with a little help. Under time pressure and after many hours of play and after defending again and again, Muminova collapsed in the end and Muzychuk grabbed the point.

These having been said, after today’s 4th round, we all (players, spectators, commentators) can happily go into a well deserved rest day.

ROUND 4 ON 2014/04/12 AT 15:00 SNO. NAMERTGRES. NAMERTGSNO. 12 GM Kosteniuk Alexandra 2527 1 – 0 WGM Batchimeg Tuvshintugs 2340 8 9 GM Dzagnidze Nana 2550 1 – 0 GM Kosintseva Tatiana 2496 7 10 GM Lagno Kateryna 2543 ½ - ½ GM Hou Yifan 2618 6 11 WGM Muminova Nafisa 2321 0 – 1 GM Muzychuk Anna 2560 5 1 GM Stefanova Antoaneta 2489 ½ - ½ WGM Girya Olga 2450 4 2 GM Ushenina Anna 2501 ½ - ½ GM Zhao Xue 2552 3



Official website

Round 4 Photo Gallery



Round 3: Hou Yifan – a full point ahead of her nearest rivals

In the 3rd round of the FIDE Women GP, Hou Yifan keeps the lead, the perfect score and our headline. She won a model game with White against the Georgian Nana Dzagnidze, scoring her third win in a row, running thus away from her nearest rivals, who are a full point behind. 

With two points out of three games are Zhao Xue, who won against Antoaneta Stefanova, and Anna Muzychuk, after her draw against Kateryna Lagno. They are closely followed by a large number of players on 50%: Anna Ushenina, Tatiana Kosintseva, Nafisa Muminova, Kateryna Lagno, Olga Girya and Antoaneta Stefanova.



On one point is Alexandra Kosteniuk, with two draws so far and with half a point on the scoreboard are: the player from Georgia, Nana Dzagnidze and the Mongolian Batchimeg Tuvshintugs, who broke the ice and scored the first draw.



For the Russians the day was a rather peaceful one, as all three Kosteniuk, Kosintseva and Girya drew today, not without some hair-raising moments though; Kosintseva and Girya missed good winning chances, but for Kosteniuk was a good day, as she escaped unpunished in her game against Ushenina.

The game of the reigning women world champion was definitely the highlight of today’s round and a good lesson to study for those who want to start up chess. She proved, if still necessary, great understanding on strategical level, when she forced Black to move away from a typical hedgehog into a worse position after having to play: 10…dxc6. The change in structure created new attacking ideas for White and the Chinese showed her masterclass in the sharp phase of the game as well. Hou Yifan didn’t fail to play one strong move after another: f4,e5, Ne4, culminating with the stunning f5 blow, followed by Rf5, Qh6, e6 – and the game soon ended in her favour, as early as move 24. Nice piece of calculation and powerful play from the Chinese, who is currently winning no less than 9.1 rating points in only three games.

After the many decisive games from the Khanty Mansiysk’s production line, it was about time, at least from a statistical point of view, for more draws to come. The first one of today occurred in the game between Muzychuk – Lagno, which, according to both players, was the logical and natural result of accurate play. The rather ‘peaceful’ 3. Bb5+ Sicilian was speeded up by the Slovenian GM who played creatively, employing an early 6.e5 and another pawn advance on the side of the board: 12. h4. Lagno didn’t fail this time to play the surgical 12…Nc6 (remember the first unfortunate game against Zhao Xue, when she played it one move too late), liquidated all the pieces, and, with a cleared board, the game ended in an inevitable draw.

The second draw of today was seen on the board of Girya – Muminova, where the Russian got an advantage out of the fashionable Queen’s Gambit opening with 5.Bf4, went on to win a precious pawn but soon entered a nail-biting time trouble, which didn’t allow her to convert the material. Muminova defended ferociously and, with less than a minute on the clock, Girya decided that safety comes first and agreed to a draw by repetition.



What could have been another bad day for the Mongolian player Tuvshintugs, turned into a happy one as she managed to escape the long lasting pressure of Kosintseva, breaking the ice and scoring her first half a point. For the Russian GM though, instead of receiving a nice present for her birthday, she gave one in return. The Berlin with 4.d3 went fine for her, but after White acquired the upper hand and later on a pawn, the advantage disappeared; with no pieces left on the board, the players had to agree a draw.

Things could have gone terribly wrong for Kosteniuk, in her direct encounter against another former women world champion, Ushenina. She suffered under the Ukrainian pressure in a typical isolated pawn position but, given the time trouble, Ushenina missed many winning opportunities along the way and even had to take care a bit in the endgame. After many hours of play, she had to admit there was nothing left to play for and accepted the draw.

The painful loss the Chinese suffered against Muminova yesterday, didn’t leave visible marks in Zhao’s play, as she confidently outplayed Stefanova in the Slav with 4.Qb3. Black’s lack in development had a great say in how White’s advantage increased with each move, reaching an inferior endgame for the Bulgarian player, who had to defend it with a pawn down. She succeed to keep the game going but after more than five hours of play, she had to admit defeat as Black, the first loss she suffers this tournament.

ROUND 3 ON 2014/04/11 AT 15:00 SNO. NAMERTGRES. NAMERTGSNO. 2 GM Ushenina Anna 2501 ½ - ½ GM Kosteniuk Alexandra 2527 12 3 GM Zhao Xue 2552 1 – 0 GM Stefanova Antoaneta 2489 1 4 WGM Girya Olga 2450 ½ - ½ WGM Muminova Nafisa 2321 11 5 GM Muzychuk Anna 2560 ½ - ½ GM Lagno Kateryna 2543 10 6 GM Hou Yifan 2618 1 – 0 GM Dzagnidze Nana 2550 9 7 GM Kosintseva Tatiana 2496 ½ - ½ WGM Batchimeg Tuvshintugs 2340 8


Official website

Round 3 Photo Gallery

 



Round 2: Hou Yifan in sole lead with a perfect 2/2 score


The history tends to repeat itself and chess is no exception: another cut-throat day, with no less than five decisive results and just one draw!

After the second round of the FIDE Women GP in Khanty Mansiysk, Hou Yifan is in sole lead with 2 points out of 2. She got an advance in development out of the opening, which Tuvshintugs was not able to neutralize. The spell was broken and the Black scored the first point in the tournament.


Perfect score for the Chinese GM: 2/2!

But the big upset of today's round was provided by Muminova who defeated Zhao Xue with the white pieces. What initially looked as a rather suspicious forth and back maneuver Bc1-e3-c1, escaped unpunished and even turned out to be completely justified after the subsequent 16.Bb2 and the strong 33.f4!


Nafisa Muminova was the surprise of today

Furthermore, in the Russian derby Kosteniuk – Kosintseva, Black won again, after a very sharp and interesting battle. In a Two Knights Game variation involving an early black pawn sacrifice, Kosintseva took over the initiative and after 35 moves proved that White's lack of development and poor coordination were fatal.

Similar story but with reversed colours, occurred in Lagno-Girya, featuring the same pattern with an uncastled king. Black played creatively yet risky, to which White fought back, found a nice antidote via an exchange sacrifice and went on to win the game in a a hopeless endgame for Black.


Lagno is back on 50% after today's win

In a game featuring mutual opening surprises, since both players were out of book on the 7th move, as they confessed during the press conference, Muzychuk equalized comfortably against the Georgian GM and seemed to apply some pressure in a preferable endgame. It proved not enough as Dzagnidze reacted in a surgical manner and went on to draw the game.

The last decisive result occurred in the direct encounter between two former women world champions: Stefanova vs Ushenina. The Bulgarian made us believe the position was a Reti, it moved into a Catalan/Slav sort of game and ended up in a Caro Kann, Advance variation structure – a true hybrid, as Stefanova tends to spoil her fans with her innovative play. The game faced a fierce strategical battle, which was greatly conducted by White and Black succumbed in the endgame, after a long day of pressure.

Round 2   SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name RtgSNo. 12   GM   Kosteniuk Alexandra   2527   0 – 1   GM   Kosintseva Tatiana   2496 7 8   WGM   Batchimeg Tuvshintugs   2340   0 – 1   GM   Hou Yifan   2618 6 9   GM   Dzagnidze Nana   2550   ½ - ½   GM   Muzychuk Anna   2560 5 10   GM   Lagno Kateryna   2543   1 – 0   WGM   Girya Olga   2450 4 11   WGM   Muminova Nafisa   2321   1 – 0   GM   Zhao Xue   2552 3 1   GM   Stefanova Antoaneta   2489   1 – 0   GM   Ushenina Anna   2501 2


Official website

Round 2 Photo Gallery



Round 1

White’s day: only Kosteniuk saved Black’s honour, escaping with a draw!

Maybe not many had expected to see so many decisive games straight from day one, but the women chess players proved they can play very interesting, fighting chess that is definitely worth watching! White won five out of the six games, to which maybe a little help, on a symbolic level, came from none other than the Mayor and the President of the Ugra Chess Federation, Vasiliy Filipenko himself. The Mayor opened the Women GP's first round by playing the first move on Hou Yifan's board. "I made the first move in the Candidates, on the board of Anand and he went on to win the event. Maybe this little detail will prove to be a talisman for Hou Yifan as well?" It certainly was, as the Chinese came out on top in a Catalan type of position against Kosintseva, where she won two pawns and soon after, the game. 



Since it was obviously White's day, for one of the three Russian players in the field, who was facing Black, things could have gone terribly wrong. In the game against the former world champion, Antoaneta Stefanova, Kosteniuk seemed to have been close to equalize but in the subsequent time trouble, Stefanova made all of us think she will win the game. But on move 58 all White's advantage vanished, when Antoaneta played: 58.f8Q, blundering 58...Nd5+. After a fierce struggle and a persistent defense, the former world champion escaped with a draw and saved Black's honour as well!



The third Russian player in the field, Olga Girya, made the day for the local supporters by winning against Nana Dzagnidze in a crazy game. The initially doubtful compensation for the sacrificed pawn in the Nimzo Opening, turned out to be a killing one in the subsequent time trouble and Olga took home the point.

Another game won by White was in the encounter between Zhao Xue and Kateryna Lagno, where the blame was put, as both players shared during the press conference, on the unfortunate Black's 15th move: 15...e4. This allowed White to seize the initiative and in the end, to win the game.

In the first game they ever played against each other, Anna Ushenina defeated the WGM from Uzbekistan, Nafisa Muminova, in a typical Saemisch structure from the Nimzo opening, the second one of today's round. After a small inaccuracy from the Ukrainian player, who pressed the entire game, Muminova seemed to be close to a draw in a rook endgame. She soon returned the favour though and Ushenina proved her technique was good enough to secure the point.

The last, but not least, game of today ended again in White's favour. Although the way Anna Muzychuk conducted the play gave the impression she will slowly but surely win the game, there was a small moment which could have been fatal for her. After many hours of play and with only 30 seconds on the clock, the Slovenian player offered a big present to her opponent, who could have drawn on move 75 by perpetual check. But the favour was not accepted, Tuvshintugs took a piece instead but the effective army of White's pawns decided soon the game.

This was the bloody story of the first round, which makes us all hope for even more fighting games in the forthcoming days! 

Round 1   SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1   GM   Stefanova Antoaneta   2489   ½ - ½   GM   Kosteniuk Alexandra   2527   12 2   GM   Ushenina Anna   2501   1 – 0   WGM   Muminova Nafisa   2321   11 3   GM   Zhao Xue   2552   1 – 0   GM   Lagno Kateryna   2543   10 4   WGM   Girya Olga   2450   1 – 0   GM   Dzagnidze Nana   2550   9 5   GM   Muzychuk Anna   2560   1 – 0   WGM   Batchimeg Tuvshintugs   2340   8 6   GM   Hou Yifan   2618   1 – 0   GM   Kosintseva Tatiana   2496   7

Official website

Round 1 Photo Gallery

Women's FIDE Grand Prix stage started in Khanty-Mansiysk

The fourth stage of the women’s FIDE Grand Prix officially opened today in Khanty-Mansiysk. A concert where the main character was a unique musical instrument – an organ, was organized for the participants and guests of the tournament.

12 chess players representing 8 countries of the world will participate in the competition that will take place until the 21st of April.

Women Grand Prix is a series of six tournaments that are being held over a two years period. The tournament uses round robin system. The time control for each player is 90 minutes for 40 moves, then 30 minutes for the rest of the game with 30 seconds increment after each move.

In his welcome address Director of Physical Culture and Sports Department of Ugra Evgeniy Redkin wished everyone an interesting tournament.

“I wish that the stage in Khanty-Mansiysk would help you score more points in the overall standings and fight for the main prize of FIDE Grand Prix 2013/14. It should be noted that during the last month the attention of chess fans all over the world was focused on Khanty-Mansiysk. Now we will have Grand Prix, and it will be followed by FIDE Women’s World Rapid and Blitz Championships, once again proving the words of FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov: “Khanty-Mansiysk is a chess Mecca”. I hope that participants will not only be interested in playing in the tournament, but will have time to visit all the tourist sights of the city”, – said Evgeniy Redkin.



The Head of Khanty-Mansiyks, President of Ugra Chess Federation Vasily Filipenko recalled that “chess spring” continues in Khanty-Mansiysk. “Today I welcome the best women chess players of the planet in the capital of Ugra. In the words of a famous poet, a woman can stop a galloping horse, and the participants of the tournament can even capture a knight! I wish everyone success and beautiful games”, – summed the mayor.

FIDE CEO Geoffrey Borg congratulated the participants and all chess spectators with the start of another Grand Prix stage.



Drawing of lots for the tournament was held during the opening ceremony. So, the pairs of the first round are:

Antoaneta Stefanova – Alexandra Kosteniuk

Anna Ushenina – Nafisa Muminova

Zhao Xue – Kateryna Lagno

Olga Girya – Nana Dzagnidze

Batchimeg Tuvshintugs – Anna Muzychuk

Tatiana Kosintseva – Hou Yifan



The opening ceremony was followed by a concert. Chamber Music Ensemble “Canzone” performed world classics. Opera vocal sketches alternated magical organ sounds, live chess pieces took the stage, reminding the audience that very soon new chess battles will start in Khanty-Mansiysk.


Official website http://khantymansiysk2014.fide.com/

Working visit to Indonesia



On April 10 the FIDE President arrived to Jakarta where he met with Hashim Djojohadikusumo, President of Indonesian Chess Federation, and Henry Hendratno, Vice President of Indonesian CF. Both sides exchanged their opinions on the situation of chess in the country, discussed the bilateral cooperation, especially paying attention to Chess in Schools programme and the possibility of holding the official international competitions.

Women's FIDE Grand Prix in Khanty-Mansiysk: Round 3



Round 3: Hou Yifan – a full point ahead of her nearest rivals

In the 3rd round of the FIDE Women GP, Hou Yifan keeps the lead, the perfect score and our headline. She won a model game with White against the Georgian Nana Dzagnidze, scoring her third win in a row, running thus away from her nearest rivals, who are a full point behind. 

With two points out of three games are Zhao Xue, who won against Antoaneta Stefanova, and Anna Muzychuk, after her draw against Kateryna Lagno. They are closely followed by a large number of players on 50%: Anna Ushenina, Tatiana Kosintseva, Nafisa Muminova, Kateryna Lagno, Olga Girya and Antoaneta Stefanova.



On one point is Alexandra Kosteniuk, with two draws so far and with half a point on the scoreboard are: the player from Georgia, Nana Dzagnidze and the Mongolian Batchimeg Tuvshintugs, who broke the ice and scored the first draw.



For the Russians the day was a rather peaceful one, as all three Kosteniuk, Kosintseva and Girya drew today, not without some hair-raising moments though; Kosintseva and Girya missed good winning chances, but for Kosteniuk was a good day, as she escaped unpunished in her game against Ushenina.

The game of the reigning women world champion was definitely the highlight of today’s round and a good lesson to study for those who want to start up chess. She proved, if still necessary, great understanding on strategical level, when she forced Black to move away from a typical hedgehog into a worse position after having to play: 10…dxc6. The change in structure created new attacking ideas for White and the Chinese showed her masterclass in the sharp phase of the game as well. Hou Yifan didn’t fail to play one strong move after another: f4,e5, Ne4, culminating with the stunning f5 blow, followed by Rf5, Qh6, e6 – and the game soon ended in her favour, as early as move 24. Nice piece of calculation and powerful play from the Chinese, who is currently winning no less than 9.1 rating points in only three games.

After the many decisive games from the Khanty Mansiysk’s production line, it was about time, at least from a statistical point of view, for more draws to come. The first one of today occurred in the game between Muzychuk – Lagno, which, according to both players, was the logical and natural result of accurate play. The rather ‘peaceful’ 3. Bb5+ Sicilian was speeded up by the Slovenian GM who played creatively, employing an early 6.e5 and another pawn advance on the side of the board: 12. h4. Lagno didn’t fail this time to play the surgical 12…Nc6 (remember the first unfortunate game against Zhao Xue, when she played it one move too late), liquidated all the pieces, and, with a cleared board, the game ended in an inevitable draw.

The second draw of today was seen on the board of Girya – Muminova, where the Russian got an advantage out of the fashionable Queen’s Gambit opening with 5.Bf4, went on to win a precious pawn but soon entered a nail-biting time trouble, which didn’t allow her to convert the material. Muminova defended ferociously and, with less than a minute on the clock, Girya decided that safety comes first and agreed to a draw by repetition.



What could have been another bad day for the Mongolian player Tuvshintugs, turned into a happy one as she managed to escape the long lasting pressure of Kosintseva, breaking the ice and scoring her first half a point. For the Russian GM though, instead of receiving a nice present for her birthday, she gave one in return. The Berlin with 4.d3 went fine for her, but after White acquired the upper hand and later on a pawn, the advantage disappeared; with no pieces left on the board, the players had to agree a draw.

Things could have gone terribly wrong for Kosteniuk, in her direct encounter against another former women world champion, Ushenina. She suffered under the Ukrainian pressure in a typical isolated pawn position but, given the time trouble, Ushenina missed many winning opportunities along the way and even had to take care a bit in the endgame. After many hours of play, she had to admit there was nothing left to play for and accepted the draw.

The painful loss the Chinese suffered against Muminova yesterday, didn’t leave visible marks in Zhao’s play, as she confidently outplayed Stefanova in the Slav with 4.Qb3. Black’s lack in development had a great say in how White’s advantage increased with each move, reaching an inferior endgame for the Bulgarian player, who had to defend it with a pawn down. She succeed to keep the game going but after more than five hours of play, she had to admit defeat as Black, the first loss she suffers this tournament.

ROUND 3 ON 2014/04/11 AT 15:00 SNO. NAMERTGRES. NAMERTGSNO. 2 GM Ushenina Anna 2501 ½ - ½ GM Kosteniuk Alexandra 2527 12 3 GM Zhao Xue 2552 1 – 0 GM Stefanova Antoaneta 2489 1 4 WGM Girya Olga 2450 ½ - ½ WGM Muminova Nafisa 2321 11 5 GM Muzychuk Anna 2560 ½ - ½ GM Lagno Kateryna 2543 10 6 GM Hou Yifan 2618 1 – 0 GM Dzagnidze Nana 2550 9 7 GM Kosintseva Tatiana 2496 ½ - ½ WGM Batchimeg Tuvshintugs 2340 8


Official website

Round 3 Photo Gallery

 



Round 2: Hou Yifan in sole lead with a perfect 2/2 score


The history tends to repeat itself and chess is no exception: another cut-throat day, with no less than five decisive results and just one draw!

After the second round of the FIDE Women GP in Khanty Mansiysk, Hou Yifan is in sole lead with 2 points out of 2. She got an advance in development out of the opening, which Tuvshintugs was not able to neutralize. The spell was broken and the Black scored the first point in the tournament.


Perfect score for the Chinese GM: 2/2!

But the big upset of today's round was provided by Muminova who defeated Zhao Xue with the white pieces. What initially looked as a rather suspicious forth and back maneuver Bc1-e3-c1, escaped unpunished and even turned out to be completely justified after the subsequent 16.Bb2 and the strong 33.f4!


Nafisa Muminova was the surprise of today

Furthermore, in the Russian derby Kosteniuk – Kosintseva, Black won again, after a very sharp and interesting battle. In a Two Knights Game variation involving an early black pawn sacrifice, Kosintseva took over the initiative and after 35 moves proved that White's lack of development and poor coordination were fatal.

Similar story but with reversed colours, occurred in Lagno-Girya, featuring the same pattern with an uncastled king. Black played creatively yet risky, to which White fought back, found a nice antidote via an exchange sacrifice and went on to win the game in a a hopeless endgame for Black.


Lagno is back on 50% after today's win

In a game featuring mutual opening surprises, since both players were out of book on the 7th move, as they confessed during the press conference, Muzychuk equalized comfortably against the Georgian GM and seemed to apply some pressure in a preferable endgame. It proved not enough as Dzagnidze reacted in a surgical manner and went on to draw the game.

The last decisive result occurred in the direct encounter between two former women world champions: Stefanova vs Ushenina. The Bulgarian made us believe the position was a Reti, it moved into a Catalan/Slav sort of game and ended up in a Caro Kann, Advance variation structure – a true hybrid, as Stefanova tends to spoil her fans with her innovative play. The game faced a fierce strategical battle, which was greatly conducted by White and Black succumbed in the endgame, after a long day of pressure.

Round 2   SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name RtgSNo. 12   GM   Kosteniuk Alexandra   2527   0 – 1   GM   Kosintseva Tatiana   2496 7 8   WGM   Batchimeg Tuvshintugs   2340   0 – 1   GM   Hou Yifan   2618 6 9   GM   Dzagnidze Nana   2550   ½ - ½   GM   Muzychuk Anna   2560 5 10   GM   Lagno Kateryna   2543   1 – 0   WGM   Girya Olga   2450 4 11   WGM   Muminova Nafisa   2321   1 – 0   GM   Zhao Xue   2552 3 1   GM   Stefanova Antoaneta   2489   1 – 0   GM   Ushenina Anna   2501 2


Official website

Round 2 Photo Gallery



Round 1

White’s day: only Kosteniuk saved Black’s honour, escaping with a draw!

Maybe not many had expected to see so many decisive games straight from day one, but the women chess players proved they can play very interesting, fighting chess that is definitely worth watching! White won five out of the six games, to which maybe a little help, on a symbolic level, came from none other than the Mayor and the President of the Ugra Chess Federation, Vasiliy Filipenko himself. The Mayor opened the Women GP's first round by playing the first move on Hou Yifan's board. "I made the first move in the Candidates, on the board of Anand and he went on to win the event. Maybe this little detail will prove to be a talisman for Hou Yifan as well?" It certainly was, as the Chinese came out on top in a Catalan type of position against Kosintseva, where she won two pawns and soon after, the game. 



Since it was obviously White's day, for one of the three Russian players in the field, who was facing Black, things could have gone terribly wrong. In the game against the former world champion, Antoaneta Stefanova, Kosteniuk seemed to have been close to equalize but in the subsequent time trouble, Stefanova made all of us think she will win the game. But on move 58 all White's advantage vanished, when Antoaneta played: 58.f8Q, blundering 58...Nd5+. After a fierce struggle and a persistent defense, the former world champion escaped with a draw and saved Black's honour as well!



The third Russian player in the field, Olga Girya, made the day for the local supporters by winning against Nana Dzagnidze in a crazy game. The initially doubtful compensation for the sacrificed pawn in the Nimzo Opening, turned out to be a killing one in the subsequent time trouble and Olga took home the point.

Another game won by White was in the encounter between Zhao Xue and Kateryna Lagno, where the blame was put, as both players shared during the press conference, on the unfortunate Black's 15th move: 15...e4. This allowed White to seize the initiative and in the end, to win the game.

In the first game they ever played against each other, Anna Ushenina defeated the WGM from Uzbekistan, Nafisa Muminova, in a typical Saemisch structure from the Nimzo opening, the second one of today's round. After a small inaccuracy from the Ukrainian player, who pressed the entire game, Muminova seemed to be close to a draw in a rook endgame. She soon returned the favour though and Ushenina proved her technique was good enough to secure the point.

The last, but not least, game of today ended again in White's favour. Although the way Anna Muzychuk conducted the play gave the impression she will slowly but surely win the game, there was a small moment which could have been fatal for her. After many hours of play and with only 30 seconds on the clock, the Slovenian player offered a big present to her opponent, who could have drawn on move 75 by perpetual check. But the favour was not accepted, Tuvshintugs took a piece instead but the effective army of White's pawns decided soon the game.

This was the bloody story of the first round, which makes us all hope for even more fighting games in the forthcoming days! 

Round 1   SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1   GM   Stefanova Antoaneta   2489   ½ - ½   GM   Kosteniuk Alexandra   2527   12 2   GM   Ushenina Anna   2501   1 – 0   WGM   Muminova Nafisa   2321   11 3   GM   Zhao Xue   2552   1 – 0   GM   Lagno Kateryna   2543   10 4   WGM   Girya Olga   2450   1 – 0   GM   Dzagnidze Nana   2550   9 5   GM   Muzychuk Anna   2560   1 – 0   WGM   Batchimeg Tuvshintugs   2340   8 6   GM   Hou Yifan   2618   1 – 0   GM   Kosintseva Tatiana   2496   7

Official website

Round 1 Photo Gallery

Women's FIDE Grand Prix stage started in Khanty-Mansiysk

The fourth stage of the women’s FIDE Grand Prix officially opened today in Khanty-Mansiysk. A concert where the main character was a unique musical instrument – an organ, was organized for the participants and guests of the tournament.

12 chess players representing 8 countries of the world will participate in the competition that will take place until the 21st of April.

Women Grand Prix is a series of six tournaments that are being held over a two years period. The tournament uses round robin system. The time control for each player is 90 minutes for 40 moves, then 30 minutes for the rest of the game with 30 seconds increment after each move.

In his welcome address Director of Physical Culture and Sports Department of Ugra Evgeniy Redkin wished everyone an interesting tournament.

“I wish that the stage in Khanty-Mansiysk would help you score more points in the overall standings and fight for the main prize of FIDE Grand Prix 2013/14. It should be noted that during the last month the attention of chess fans all over the world was focused on Khanty-Mansiysk. Now we will have Grand Prix, and it will be followed by FIDE Women’s World Rapid and Blitz Championships, once again proving the words of FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov: “Khanty-Mansiysk is a chess Mecca”. I hope that participants will not only be interested in playing in the tournament, but will have time to visit all the tourist sights of the city”, – said Evgeniy Redkin.



The Head of Khanty-Mansiyks, President of Ugra Chess Federation Vasily Filipenko recalled that “chess spring” continues in Khanty-Mansiysk. “Today I welcome the best women chess players of the planet in the capital of Ugra. In the words of a famous poet, a woman can stop a galloping horse, and the participants of the tournament can even capture a knight! I wish everyone success and beautiful games”, – summed the mayor.

FIDE CEO Geoffrey Borg congratulated the participants and all chess spectators with the start of another Grand Prix stage.



Drawing of lots for the tournament was held during the opening ceremony. So, the pairs of the first round are:

Antoaneta Stefanova – Alexandra Kosteniuk

Anna Ushenina – Nafisa Muminova

Zhao Xue – Kateryna Lagno

Olga Girya – Nana Dzagnidze

Batchimeg Tuvshintugs – Anna Muzychuk

Tatiana Kosintseva – Hou Yifan



The opening ceremony was followed by a concert. Chamber Music Ensemble “Canzone” performed world classics. Opera vocal sketches alternated magical organ sounds, live chess pieces took the stage, reminding the audience that very soon new chess battles will start in Khanty-Mansiysk.


Official website http://khantymansiysk2014.fide.com/

Women's FIDE Grand Prix in Khanty-Mansiysk: Round 2



Hou Yifan in sole lead with a perfect 2/2 score


The history tends to repeat itself and chess is no exception: another cut-throat day, with no less than five decisive results and just one draw!

After the second round of the FIDE Women GP in Khanty Mansiysk, Hou Yifan is in sole lead with 2 points out of 2. She got an advance in development out of the opening, which Tuvshintugs was not able to neutralize. The spell was broken and the Black scored the first point in the tournament.


Perfect score for the Chinese GM: 2/2!

But the big upset of today's round was provided by Muminova who defeated Zhao Xue with the white pieces. What initially looked as a rather suspicious forth and back maneuver Bc1-e3-c1, escaped unpunished and even turned out to be completely justified after the subsequent 16.Bb2 and the strong 33.f4!


Nafisa Muminova was the surprise of today

Furthermore, in the Russian derby Kosteniuk – Kosintseva, Black won again, after a very sharp and interesting battle. In a Two Knights Game variation involving an early black pawn sacrifice, Kosintseva took over the initiative and after 35 moves proved that White's lack of development and poor coordination were fatal.

Similar story but with reversed colours, occurred in Lagno-Girya, featuring the same pattern with an uncastled king. Black played creatively yet risky, to which White fought back, found a nice antidote via an exchange sacrifice and went on to win the game in a a hopeless endgame for Black.


Lagno is back on 50% after today's win

In a game featuring mutual opening surprises, since both players were out of book on the 7th move, as they confessed during the press conference, Muzychuk equalized comfortably against the Georgian GM and seemed to apply some pressure in a preferable endgame. It proved not enough as Dzagnidze reacted in a surgical manner and went on to draw the game.

The last decisive result occurred in the direct encounter between two former women world champions: Stefanova vs Ushenina. The Bulgarian made us believe the position was a Reti, it moved into a Catalan/Slav sort of game and ended up in a Caro Kann, Advance variation structure – a true hybrid, as Stefanova tends to spoil her fans with her innovative play. The game faced a fierce strategical battle, which was greatly conducted by White and Black succumbed in the endgame, after a long day of pressure.

Round 2   SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name RtgSNo. 12   GM   Kosteniuk Alexandra   2527   0 – 1   GM   Kosintseva Tatiana   2496 7 8   WGM   Batchimeg Tuvshintugs   2340   0 – 1   GM   Hou Yifan   2618 6 9   GM   Dzagnidze Nana   2550   ½ - ½   GM   Muzychuk Anna   2560 5 10   GM   Lagno Kateryna   2543   1 – 0   WGM   Girya Olga   2450 4 11   WGM   Muminova Nafisa   2321   1 – 0   GM   Zhao Xue   2552 3 1   GM   Stefanova Antoaneta   2489   1 – 0   GM   Ushenina Anna   2501 2


Official website

Round 2 Photo Gallery



Round 1

White’s day: only Kosteniuk saved Black’s honour, escaping with a draw!

Maybe not many had expected to see so many decisive games straight from day one, but the women chess players proved they can play very interesting, fighting chess that is definitely worth watching! White won five out of the six games, to which maybe a little help, on a symbolic level, came from none other than the Mayor and the President of the Ugra Chess Federation, Vasiliy Filipenko himself. The Mayor opened the Women GP's first round by playing the first move on Hou Yifan's board. "I made the first move in the Candidates, on the board of Anand and he went on to win the event. Maybe this little detail will prove to be a talisman for Hou Yifan as well?" It certainly was, as the Chinese came out on top in a Catalan type of position against Kosintseva, where she won two pawns and soon after, the game. 



Since it was obviously White's day, for one of the three Russian players in the field, who was facing Black, things could have gone terribly wrong. In the game against the former world champion, Antoaneta Stefanova, Kosteniuk seemed to have been close to equalize but in the subsequent time trouble, Stefanova made all of us think she will win the game. But on move 58 all White's advantage vanished, when Antoaneta played: 58.f8Q, blundering 58...Nd5+. After a fierce struggle and a persistent defense, the former world champion escaped with a draw and saved Black's honour as well!



The third Russian player in the field, Olga Girya, made the day for the local supporters by winning against Nana Dzagnidze in a crazy game. The initially doubtful compensation for the sacrificed pawn in the Nimzo Opening, turned out to be a killing one in the subsequent time trouble and Olga took home the point.

Another game won by White was in the encounter between Zhao Xue and Kateryna Lagno, where the blame was put, as both players shared during the press conference, on the unfortunate Black's 15th move: 15...e4. This allowed White to seize the initiative and in the end, to win the game.

In the first game they ever played against each other, Anna Ushenina defeated the WGM from Uzbekistan, Nafisa Muminova, in a typical Saemisch structure from the Nimzo opening, the second one of today's round. After a small inaccuracy from the Ukrainian player, who pressed the entire game, Muminova seemed to be close to a draw in a rook endgame. She soon returned the favour though and Ushenina proved her technique was good enough to secure the point.

The last, but not least, game of today ended again in White's favour. Although the way Anna Muzychuk conducted the play gave the impression she will slowly but surely win the game, there was a small moment which could have been fatal for her. After many hours of play and with only 30 seconds on the clock, the Slovenian player offered a big present to her opponent, who could have drawn on move 75 by perpetual check. But the favour was not accepted, Tuvshintugs took a piece instead but the effective army of White's pawns decided soon the game.

This was the bloody story of the first round, which makes us all hope for even more fighting games in the forthcoming days! 

Round 1   SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1   GM   Stefanova Antoaneta   2489   ½ - ½   GM   Kosteniuk Alexandra   2527   12 2   GM   Ushenina Anna   2501   1 – 0   WGM   Muminova Nafisa   2321   11 3   GM   Zhao Xue   2552   1 – 0   GM   Lagno Kateryna   2543   10 4   WGM   Girya Olga   2450   1 – 0   GM   Dzagnidze Nana   2550   9 5   GM   Muzychuk Anna   2560   1 – 0   WGM   Batchimeg Tuvshintugs   2340   8 6   GM   Hou Yifan   2618   1 – 0   GM   Kosintseva Tatiana   2496   7

Official website

Round 1 Photo Gallery

Women's FIDE Grand Prix stage started in Khanty-Mansiysk

The fourth stage of the women’s FIDE Grand Prix officially opened today in Khanty-Mansiysk. A concert where the main character was a unique musical instrument – an organ, was organized for the participants and guests of the tournament.

12 chess players representing 8 countries of the world will participate in the competition that will take place until the 21st of April.

Women Grand Prix is a series of six tournaments that are being held over a two years period. The tournament uses round robin system. The time control for each player is 90 minutes for 40 moves, then 30 minutes for the rest of the game with 30 seconds increment after each move.

In his welcome address Director of Physical Culture and Sports Department of Ugra Evgeniy Redkin wished everyone an interesting tournament.

“I wish that the stage in Khanty-Mansiysk would help you score more points in the overall standings and fight for the main prize of FIDE Grand Prix 2013/14. It should be noted that during the last month the attention of chess fans all over the world was focused on Khanty-Mansiysk. Now we will have Grand Prix, and it will be followed by FIDE Women’s World Rapid and Blitz Championships, once again proving the words of FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov: “Khanty-Mansiysk is a chess Mecca”. I hope that participants will not only be interested in playing in the tournament, but will have time to visit all the tourist sights of the city”, – said Evgeniy Redkin.



The Head of Khanty-Mansiyks, President of Ugra Chess Federation Vasily Filipenko recalled that “chess spring” continues in Khanty-Mansiysk. “Today I welcome the best women chess players of the planet in the capital of Ugra. In the words of a famous poet, a woman can stop a galloping horse, and the participants of the tournament can even capture a knight! I wish everyone success and beautiful games”, – summed the mayor.

FIDE CEO Geoffrey Borg congratulated the participants and all chess spectators with the start of another Grand Prix stage.



Drawing of lots for the tournament was held during the opening ceremony. So, the pairs of the first round are:

Antoaneta Stefanova – Alexandra Kosteniuk

Anna Ushenina – Nafisa Muminova

Zhao Xue – Kateryna Lagno

Olga Girya – Nana Dzagnidze

Batchimeg Tuvshintugs – Anna Muzychuk

Tatiana Kosintseva – Hou Yifan



The opening ceremony was followed by a concert. Chamber Music Ensemble “Canzone” performed world classics. Opera vocal sketches alternated magical organ sounds, live chess pieces took the stage, reminding the audience that very soon new chess battles will start in Khanty-Mansiysk.


Official website http://khantymansiysk2014.fide.com/

2018 Olympiad



When the FIDE Presidential Board met in Khanty-Mansiysk, they were aware of two serious bids, but had not received the official documents. As the deadline was imminent, it was decided to extend the deadline by 15 days to ensure that there was enough time to receive the bids. This was agreed unanimously by all the voting Presidential Board members who were present:

Kirsan Ilyumzhinov

Georgios Makropoulos

Nigel Freeman

Beatriz Marinello

Lewis Ncube

Chu Bo

Israel Gelfer

Boris Kutin

Silvio Danailov

Lakhdar Mazouz

Jorge Vega 


FIDE regards the public accusations by the ECU President as groundless.

Women's FIDE Grand Prix in Khanty-Mansiysk: Round 1



White’s day: only Kosteniuk saved Black’s honour, escaping with a draw!

Maybe not many had expected to see so many decisive games straight from day one, but the women chess players proved they can play very interesting, fighting chess that is definitely worth watching! White won five out of the six games, to which maybe a little help, on a symbolic level, came from none other than the Mayor and the President of the Ugra Chess Federation, Vasiliy Filipenko himself. The Mayor opened the Women GP's first round by playing the first move on Hou Yifan's board. "I made the first move in the Candidates, on the board of Anand and he went on to win the event. Maybe this little detail will prove to be a talisman for Hou Yifan as well?" It certainly was, as the Chinese came out on top in a Catalan type of position against Kosintseva, where she won two pawns and soon after, the game. 



Since it was obviously White's day, for one of the three Russian players in the field, who was facing Black, things could have gone terribly wrong. In the game against the former world champion, Antoaneta Stefanova, Kosteniuk seemed to have been close to equalize but in the subsequent time trouble, Stefanova made all of us think she will win the game. But on move 58 all White's advantage vanished, when Antoaneta played: 58.f8Q, blundering 58...Nd5+. After a fierce struggle and a persistent defense, the former world champion escaped with a draw and saved Black's honour as well!



The third Russian player in the field, Olga Girya, made the day for the local supporters by winning against Nana Dzagnidze in a crazy game. The initially doubtful compensation for the sacrificed pawn in the Nimzo Opening, turned out to be a killing one in the subsequent time trouble and Olga took home the point.

Another game won by White was in the encounter between Zhao Xue and Kateryna Lagno, where the blame was put, as both players shared during the press conference, on the unfortunate Black's 15th move: 15...e4. This allowed White to seize the initiative and in the end, to win the game.

In the first game they ever played against each other, Anna Ushenina defeated the WGM from Uzbekistan, Nafisa Muminova, in a typical Saemisch structure from the Nimzo opening, the second one of today's round. After a small inaccuracy from the Ukrainian player, who pressed the entire game, Muminova seemed to be close to a draw in a rook endgame. She soon returned the favour though and Ushenina proved her technique was good enough to secure the point.

The last, but not least, game of today ended again in White's favour. Although the way Anna Muzychuk conducted the play gave the impression she will slowly but surely win the game, there was a small moment which could have been fatal for her. After many hours of play and with only 30 seconds on the clock, the Slovenian player offered a big present to her opponent, who could have drawn on move 75 by perpetual check. But the favour was not accepted, Tuvshintugs took a piece instead but the effective army of White's pawns decided soon the game.

This was the bloody story of the first round, which makes us all hope for even more fighting games in the forthcoming days! 

Round 1 SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1   GM   Stefanova Antoaneta   2489   ½ - ½   GM   Kosteniuk Alexandra   2527   12 2   GM   Ushenina Anna   2501   1 – 0   WGM   Muminova Nafisa   2321   11 3   GM   Zhao Xue   2552   1 – 0   GM   Lagno Kateryna   2543   10 4   WGM   Girya Olga   2450   1 – 0   GM   Dzagnidze Nana   2550   9 5   GM   Muzychuk Anna   2560   1 – 0   WGM   Batchimeg Tuvshintugs   2340   8 6   GM   Hou Yifan   2618   1 – 0   GM   Kosintseva Tatiana   2496   7

Official website

Round 1 Photo Gallery

Women's FIDE Grand Prix stage started in Khanty-Mansiysk

The fourth stage of the women’s FIDE Grand Prix officially opened today in Khanty-Mansiysk. A concert where the main character was a unique musical instrument – an organ, was organized for the participants and guests of the tournament.

12 chess players representing 8 countries of the world will participate in the competition that will take place until the 21st of April.

Women Grand Prix is a series of six tournaments that are being held over a two years period. The tournament uses round robin system. The time control for each player is 90 minutes for 40 moves, then 30 minutes for the rest of the game with 30 seconds increment after each move.

In his welcome address Director of Physical Culture and Sports Department of Ugra Evgeniy Redkin wished everyone an interesting tournament.

“I wish that the stage in Khanty-Mansiysk would help you score more points in the overall standings and fight for the main prize of FIDE Grand Prix 2013/14. It should be noted that during the last month the attention of chess fans all over the world was focused on Khanty-Mansiysk. Now we will have Grand Prix, and it will be followed by FIDE Women’s World Rapid and Blitz Championships, once again proving the words of FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov: “Khanty-Mansiysk is a chess Mecca”. I hope that participants will not only be interested in playing in the tournament, but will have time to visit all the tourist sights of the city”, – said Evgeniy Redkin.



The Head of Khanty-Mansiyks, President of Ugra Chess Federation Vasily Filipenko recalled that “chess spring” continues in Khanty-Mansiysk. “Today I welcome the best women chess players of the planet in the capital of Ugra. In the words of a famous poet, a woman can stop a galloping horse, and the participants of the tournament can even capture a knight! I wish everyone success and beautiful games”, – summed the mayor.

FIDE CEO Geoffrey Borg congratulated the participants and all chess spectators with the start of another Grand Prix stage.



Drawing of lots for the tournament was held during the opening ceremony. So, the pairs of the first round are:

Antoaneta Stefanova – Alexandra Kosteniuk

Anna Ushenina – Nafisa Muminova

Zhao Xue – Kateryna Lagno

Olga Girya – Nana Dzagnidze

Batchimeg Tuvshintugs – Anna Muzychuk

Tatiana Kosintseva – Hou Yifan



The opening ceremony was followed by a concert. Chamber Music Ensemble “Canzone” performed world classics. Opera vocal sketches alternated magical organ sounds, live chess pieces took the stage, reminding the audience that very soon new chess battles will start in Khanty-Mansiysk.


Official website http://khantymansiysk2014.fide.com/

Women's FIDE Grand Prix stage started in Khanty-Mansiysk



The fourth stage of the women’s FIDE Grand Prix officially opened today in Khanty-Mansiysk. A concert where the main character was a unique musical instrument – an organ, was organized for the participants and guests of the tournament.

12 chess players representing 8 countries of the world will participate in the competition that will take place until the 21st of April.

Women Grand Prix is a series of six tournaments that are being held over a two years period. The tournament uses round robin system. The time control for each player is 90 minutes for 40 moves, then 30 minutes for the rest of the game with 30 seconds increment after each move.

In his welcome address Director of Physical Culture and Sports Department of Ugra Evgeniy Redkin wished everyone an interesting tournament.

“I wish that the stage in Khanty-Mansiysk would help you score more points in the overall standings and fight for the main prize of FIDE Grand Prix 2013/14. It should be noted that during the last month the attention of chess fans all over the world was focused on Khanty-Mansiysk. Now we will have Grand Prix, and it will be followed by FIDE Women’s World Rapid and Blitz Championships, once again proving the words of FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov: “Khanty-Mansiysk is a chess Mecca”. I hope that participants will not only be interested in playing in the tournament, but will have time to visit all the tourist sights of the city”, – said Evgeniy Redkin.



The Head of Khanty-Mansiyks, President of Ugra Chess Federation Vasily Filipenko recalled that “chess spring” continues in Khanty-Mansiysk. “Today I welcome the best women chess players of the planet in the capital of Ugra. In the words of a famous poet, a woman can stop a galloping horse, and the participants of the tournament can even capture a knight! I wish everyone success and beautiful games”, – summed the mayor.

FIDE CEO Geoffrey Borg congratulated the participants and all chess spectators with the start of another Grand Prix stage.



Drawing of lots for the tournament was held during the opening ceremony. So, the pairs of the first round are:

Antoaneta Stefanova – Alexandra Kosteniuk

Anna Ushenina – Nafisa Muminova

Zhao Xue – Kateryna Lagno

Olga Girya – Nana Dzagnidze

Batchimeg Tuvshintugs – Anna Muzychuk

Tatiana Kosintseva – Hou Yifan



The opening ceremony was followed by a concert. Chamber Music Ensemble “Canzone” performed world classics. Opera vocal sketches alternated magical organ sounds, live chess pieces took the stage, reminding the audience that very soon new chess battles will start in Khanty-Mansiysk.


Official website http://khantymansiysk2014.fide.com/

Congratulations to FIDE President on his birthday


World Chess Federation congratulates the FIDE President on his birthday! FIDE family wishes Kirsan Ilyumzhinov all the best
to continue with the same unfailing energy and commitment to work for the good of chess. On this special day the best wishes, happiness, good health and success
in performing the responsible duties of your position.

Kirsan Ilyumzhinov launches FIDE Online Arena Officially



It is with great pride that I announce the formal launch of FIDE online arena on April the 4th – a truly historic day for the world of chess.

Thanks to the latest technology, chess players from every federation in the world will now have the opportunity to come together and play in official FIDE events, unimpeded by distance, physical disability, shortage of available time, or any of the other obstacles that make attending official tournaments or match play difficult or impossible for many players.

Moreover, FIDE online arena creates new opportunities that in the past were only a dream, and the arena is certain to bring chess to millions of new players in the years ahead, as well as serving as an invaluable tool for education, broadcasting , chess in schools and many other crucial chess activities. The only limit for what is possible is our imagination.

Since the test version of FIDE online arena started, the project has generated enormous enthusiasm and interest, and we have been extremely grateful for the many messages of support for this initiative that FIDE has received from around the world.

As with other major sports, effective anti-cheating measures are crucial for guaranteeing the integrity of the game with players, the public , the media and sponsors alike. FIDE online arena truly excels in this regard as it is equipped with a highly sophisticated anti-cheating system that monitors all official games. This detailed monitoring is supplemented by a team of anti-cheating specialists and stringent FIDE anti-cheating procedures so that the maximum protection possible is provided, with the result that there will no longer be a distinction between the ratings for blitz or rapid games played over-the-board and those played on FIDE online arena – just single ratings for both time controls.

Gens una sumus is FIDE’s guiding principal and for this reason I am particularly excited by the introduction of FIDE online arena. Its unique ability to bring together chess players within and from every nation in the world can only strengthen the strong bonds that we share and that continue to unite us.

I am very pleased to announce that in celebration of FIDE online arena’s official launch all chess players with a FIDE rating and ID number are eligible for one month’s free membership.

Enjoy it! www.arena.myfide.net
I look forward to seeing you online.

Kirsan Nikolayevich Ilyumzhinov
President


 

 

Working visit to Moldova



On April 2, the FIDE President arrived to Chisinau where he took part in the closing ceremony of Veaceslav Cebanenco Memorial. The working programme in the capital of Moldova President Ilyumzhinov started with the meeting with Prime Minister Mr. Iurie Leance. At the meeting also present were Mr. Ali Nihat Yazici, FIDE Vice President and Chairman of Chess in Schools Commission, Mr. Berik Balgabaev, FIDE President’s Assistant, Mr. Leonid Buzhor, Prime Minister’s advisor, former Minister of Education, and Mr. Valery Coada, General Secretary of Moldavian Chess Federation. It was noted that Moldova is one of the best examples of cooperation between FIDE and national federation in the implementation of CiS programme. It has passed three stages in Moldova. Initially the FIDE President allocated money from his personal funds to support the programme in the rural schools. Twenty-five schools from different parts of the country were drawn into it. At the second stage, the government of Moldova supplied forty-five schools more with the equipment. At the third stage, the FIDE CiS Commission involved in the programme more than 100 schools. PM Leance agreed to support this project. “We need to think over how to make it a national programme. And I believe chess should be inculcated to kids from kindergarten.” In this connection, he intends to spend a part of grant 25 million euros allocated by the European Institutes for the development of pre-school education.


Meeting with the Prime Minister of Republic of Moldova Mr. Iurie Leance



Diffusion map of all three stages of CiS programme in Moldova


Press conference in INFOTAG news agency: Mr. Ali Nihat Yazici, FIDE Vice President, Chairman of Chess in Schools Commission, Mr. Igor Dodon, President of Moldavian CF, FIDE President, Mr. Ion Dobronauteanu, Vice President of European Chess Union, Delegate of Romanian CF. President Dodon said that Moldova intends to bid for hosting the Women’s World Championship scheduled for this October.


Visiting the Nicolai Gogol Lyceum where chess lessons are conducted


9-year-old Andrei was the first one who correctly answered to FIDE President’s question who is World Chess Champion


As a reward, he got a chance to play blitz with the president.


Visiting the chess-draughts club where Veaceslav Cebanenco Memorial was held


The closing ceremony was held in Codru Hotel, in 1997 the participants of FIDE Congress were residing in this hotel


Igor Dodon, President of Moldavian Chess Federation


Dragos Hincu, Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports or Republic of Moldova


Awarding Ceremony


Alexei Shirov won bronze; he shared his memories of Veaceslav Cebanenco


The runner-up Vladimir Malakhov was in Chisinau for the first time


The winner is Viorel Bologan

List of titles approved by the 1st quarter PB 2014


FIDE is publishing the list of titles approved by the 1st quarter Presidential Board meeting held in Khanty-Mansiysk, RUS on 29 March - 1 April 2014.


  GM         Haddouche, Mohamed     ALG   Aghasaryan, Robert     ARM   Michiels, Bart     BEL   Maghalashvili, Davit     GEO   Nigalidze, Gaioz     GEO   Dvirnyy, Danyyil     ITA   Bok, Benjamin     NED   Artemiev, Vladislav     RUS   Mozharov, Mikhail     RUS   Stukopin, Andrey     RUS   Nosenko, Alexander     UKR             WGM         Abdumalik, Zhansaya     KAZ             IM         Harutyuniuan, Tigran K     ARM   Platzgummer, Fabian     AUT   Ziaziulkina, Nastassia     BLR   Lin, Chen     CHN   Teplyi, Igor     DEN   Pile, Richard     FRA   Valles, Manuel     FRA   Aravindh, Chithambaram     IND   Navin, Kanna T.U.     IND   Kantans, Toms     LAT   Grishchenko, Sergey     RUS   Rasskazov, Vladimir     RUS   Cabarkapa, Novak     SRB   Jovanovic, Dusan D     SRB   Zlatanovic, Boroljub     SRB   Steel, Henry Robert     RSA   Camacho Collados, Marcos     ESP   Fenollar Jorda, Manuel     ESP   Polyakov, Maxim     UKR             IA         Kenmure, Jammie     AUS   Stead, Kerry     AUS   Gimenez Canadas, Carlos     ESP   Fiedler, Wolfgang     GER   Strobl, Thomas     GER   Balaraman, Subramanian     IND   Palaniappan, P.     IND   Pandit, Perm     IND   Lagerman, Robert     ISL   Klinova, Masha     ISR   Kotsur, Pavel     KAZ   Degregori, Luis     PER   Marcial, Augusto     PHI   Ivanov, Alexander Al.     RUS   Myakutin, Valery I.     RUS   Sharkov, Pavel     RUS   Grosar, Aljosa     SLO   Diviak, Ratislav     SVK   Zidi, Abdullah     TUN   Altun, Emin Yasa     TUR   Sequera Gimenez, Ely Saul     VEN             FA
        Lerari, Said     ALG   Chibnall, Alana     AUS   Forace, Lee     AUS   Huber, Christian     AUT   Hajiyev, Emin     AZE   Li, Shaomeng     CHN   Xia, Qiong     CHN   Lacmanovic, Stipe     CRO   Valcovic, Kristian     CRO   Herrera del Sol, Isbel     CUB   Kudla, Richard     CZE   Ugarte De Rueda, Antonio     ESP   Feit, Jean-Luc     FRA   Kikvidze, Inga     GEO   Kuhn, Christian     GER   Poetke, Dan-Peter     GER   Wolf, Stefan     GER   Christoforidis, Ioannis     GRE   Siempos, Harilaos     GRE   Siempos, Konstantinos     GRE   Stamatopoulos, Christos     GRE   Dhenagaran, B.     IND   Rajesh, R.     IND   Saini, Rashmi     IND   Thanki, Hemal Karsanii     IND   Vinothkumar, T.     IND   Siva, Ramakrishnan     IND   Baldursson, Steinthor     ISL   Egorov, Evgeny     KAZ   Borg, Geoffrey     MLT   Aanstad, Magnus     NOR   Murillo, Augustin     PAN   Cybulski, Maciej     POL   Maka-Polkowska, Magdalena     POL   Bornheim, Michael     RSA   Steyn, Lynette     RSA   Bunbich, Vitaly     RUS   Kulikov, Nikolay I.     RUS   Magdalinskaya, Evgeniya     RUS   Mestnikov, Semen     RUS   Golubovic, Marko     SRB   Radosavljevic, Nebojsa     SRB   Stankovic, Miodrag     SRB   Stojanovic, Nadezda     SRB   Tisma, Ivan     SRB   Paganini, Toni     SUI   Studer, Jonas     SUI   Vyparina, Matej     SVK   Berg, Bo     SWE   Gergeroglu, Yalcin     TUR   Makarevich, Vladimir     UKR   Garcia, Oscar     USA   Kormick, Korey J.     USA             IO         Masole, Vincent     BOT   Katisenge, Keenese     BOT   Lopez Rodriguez, Eduardo     ESP   Iashvili, Akaki     GEO   Reshef, Nir     ISR   Manole, Vasile     ROU   Steenkamp, Judy-Marie     RSA   Bouaziz, Slim     TUN   Roselli Mailhe, Bernardo     URU                       CONDITIONAL ON RTG                   GM         Ankit, R.Rajpara     IND   Boruchovsky, Avital     ISR   Troff, Kayden W     USA   Yang, Darwin     USA   Vakhidov, Jahongir     UZB             IM         Arabidze, Meri     GEO   Kathmale, Sameer     IND   Abrahamyan, Tatev     USA             WIM         Frayna, Janelle Mae     PHI                       CONDITIONAL ON INFO
                  IA         Ogando Gonzalez, Francisco J.     ESP   Langland, Thomas P.     USA             FA         Faraliana, Annissa     INA   Luna, Riasti     INA   Ali, Ebraheem     JOR   Duarez Facho, Luis Alberto     PER   Alacaba, Onur     TUR   Horodyskyi, Oleh     UKR   Kireev, Andrey     UKR   Martynkov, Oleksandr     UKR

TITLES FROM FIDE ARBITERS’ SEMINARS approved by the 1st quarter PB 2014

Download the LIST of FA titles from Seminars.

FIDE Presidential Board held in Khanty-Mansiysk

The 1st quarter FIDE Presidential Board was held on 30th March at the conference room of Ugra Classic Complex in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia.

The meeting was opened by FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhninov and Khanty-Mansiysk Mayor and Ugra Chess Federation President Vassily Filipenko.

Mayor Vassily Filipenko welcomed the guests and wished a pleasant stay in Khanty-Mansiysk.

President Ilyumzhninov thanked the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug and Ugra Chess Federation for their hospitality and excellent organization of the FIDE World Candidates Tournament.

The Board greeted the newly elected President of Russian Chess Federation Andrei Filatov, who attended the meeting together with the senior RCF officials.

The President then gave a report stating what he had done since the FIDE Presidential Board in Chennai.

Oman and Burkina Faso are accepted as new member federations of FIDE. The application of South Sudan is pending the resolution of the IOC status and the valid federation Statutes.

The Board supported President's request for resignation of General Secretary Ignatius Leong.

The Board reviewed the FIDE Commissions' reports.

New International Arbiter, International Organizer, Trainer titles, and over the board titles have been approved.

The WCOC report was agreed: there will be four Grand Prix events if we have all four signed by May 31st. If not, the places in the Candidates Tournament will be given one to the World Cup and one to the next highest on the Ratings list, instead of the Grand Prix.

As FIDE was informed that three Federations wanted to bid for 2018 Olympiad and no bids had been seen at the time of PB, the PB agreed to extend bidding by 15 days until 15th April.

Among other decisions, SPICE Webster and Marshall Chess Club were approved as FIDE Academies on the request by the FIDE Trainers Commission.

The Board condemned by unanimous vote the former World Champion Garry Kasparov for insulting the International Olympic Committee and its President Thomas Bach.

Photo Gallery







OLYMPIAD 2014: THE PRE-REGISTRATION EXTENDED TILL APRIL 4th



DEADLINE TO ACCEPT THE PRE-REGISTRATION EXTENDED TILL FRIDAY, APRIL 4th

Dear chess friends!

We are happy to announce that more than 120 national federations have succeeded to pre-register for the Chess Olympiad 2014 and confirmed their participation in the coming event through the new registration system. We keep receiving the confirmation of the participation from the rest of the federations VIA E-MAIL and we accept them as valid.

Since the registration system will be used for the further purposes (team registrations, hotel preferences and travel details), we are asking you for your kind cooperation in making the necessary steps to be in the FIDE system of the Olympiad for further organizational reasons.

In this respect, please wait for a letter from the Ogranizers (kema@tromso2014.no) with explanations on how you proceed with the registration.

We will try to help you out whenever it is needed.
Thank you so much for your kind cooperation and understanding.


Med vennlig hilsen / Kind regards

Kema Goryaeva
Registration & Accreditation

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