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Tashkent Grand Prix: Round 3

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Round 3: three decisive games


Maxime Vachier-Lagrave kept his half point lead in round 3 of the FIDE Grand Prix in Tashkent. He managed to hold a draw with Black against Teimour Radjabov after long defence. Sergey Karjakin outplayed his compatriot Dmitry Jakovenko and shares the second place with Hikaru Nakamura and Dmitry Andreikin, who drew with Anish Giri and Fabiano Caruana respectively. Rustam Kasimdzhanov sacrificed a pawn in the opening but lost the thread of the game in a complicated position against Baadur Jobava. Shakhriyar Mamedyarov profited from a mistake in the endgame by Boris Gelfand after 6 hours of play.

Round 3 results     SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 2 GM Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar 2764 1 - 0 GM Gelfand, Boris 2748 12 3 GM Nakamura, Hikaru 2764 ½ - ½ GM Giri, Anish 2768 1 4 GM Caruana, Fabiano 2844 ½ - ½ GM Andreikin, Dmitry 2722 11 5 GM Kasimdzhanov, Rustam 2706 0 - 1 GM Jobava, Baadur 2717 10 6 GM Radjabov, Teimour 2726 ½ - ½ GM Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2757 9 7 GM Karjakin, Sergey 2767 1 - 0 GM Jakovenko, Dmitry 2747 8
Standings after Round 3


Read full Round 3 report here


Maxime Vachier-Lagrave sole leader after two rounds


Maxime Vachier-Lagrave became the sole leader in the tournament after defeating Rustam Kasimdzhanov. It turned out to be the only decisive game in the second round as all other five encounters finished in a draw. Fabiano Caruana was very close to strike back after his unfortunate start but was held to a draw by Baadur Jobava. Dmitry Andreikin and Hikaru Nakamura were first to finish their game after repeating known line from Anand-Shirov. Anish Giri introduced an interesting novelty in the opening but didn't manage to convert his advantage against Shakhriyar Mamedyarov. Boris Gelfand and Dmitry Jakovenko could not break through stubborn defenses of their opponents Sergey Karjakin and Teimour Radjabov.

Round 2 results
    SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 12 GM Gelfand, Boris 2748 ½ - ½ GM Karjakin, Sergey 2767 7 8 GM Jakovenko, Dmitry 2747 ½ - ½ GM Radjabov, Teimour 2726 6 9 GM Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2757 1 - 0 GM Kasimdzhanov, Rustam 2706 5 10 GM Jobava, Baadur 2717 ½ - ½ GM Caruana, Fabiano 2844 4 11 GM Andreikin, Dmitry 2722 ½ - ½ GM Nakamura, Hikaru 2764 3 1 GM Giri, Anish 2768 ½ - ½ GM Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar 2764 2

Read full Round 2 report here


Round 1: Andreikin, Nakamura and Vachier-Lagrave first winners in Grand Prix


Dmitry Andreikin, Hikaru Nakamura and Maxime Vachier-Lagrave defeated their opponents today, perhaps, inspired by the great Champions Bobby Fisher, Tigran Petrossian and Mikahil Tal (whose portraits are on the background of the photo from the opening ceremony). Maxime Vachier-Lagrave started the Grand Prix series with victory over the top seed of the tournament Fabiano Caruana. In a “must see” game Nakamura vs Jobava, Georgian player sacrificed a rook for 3 pawns but blundered in a very complex position being short of time. Shakhriyar Mamedyarov unexpectedly lost in the endgame with pawn up against Dmitry Andreikin. Three other games Giri-Gelfand, Kasimdzhanov-Jakovenko, Radjabov-Karjakin were drawn. 

Round 1 results
    SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1 GM Giri, Anish 2768 ½ - ½ GM Gelfand, Boris 2748 12 2 GM Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar 2764 0 - 1 GM Andreikin, Dmitry 2722 11 3 GM Nakamura, Hikaru 2764 1 - 0 GM Jobava, Baadur 2717 10 4 GM Caruana, Fabiano 2844 0 - 1 GM Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2757 9 5 GM Kasimdzhanov, Rustam 2706 ½ - ½ GM Jakovenko, Dmitry 2747 8 6 GM Radjabov, Teimour 2726 ½ - ½ GM Karjakin, Sergey 2767 7




Read full Round 1 report here




The second stage of FIDE Grand Prix series 2014-2015 was officially opened on Monday evening at the Gallery of Fine Arts in Tashkent. The tournament's opening ceremony was attended by chess officials, sponsors, national and international media. From 21st of October till 2nd of November over eleven rounds, the strongest players in the world will compete in the round robin tournament. The tournament follows the first stage which recently finished in the capital of Azerbaijan. Fabiano Caruano (ITA) and Boris Gelfand (ISR) tied for the first place in Baku Grand Prix and are the leaders in the third GP series.



The opening ceremony started with speeches. The Chairman of the Chess Federation of Uzbekistan Alisher Saidabbasovich Sultanov took the floor to welcome all participants and guests.



FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov expressed his gratitude to the government of the country for their huge support and decisive contribution into development of chess.



The Chief Arbiter of the tournament IA Husan Turdialiev conducted the ceremony of drawing of lots. Each participant was proposed to choose one of the 12 bottles of cognac with the number inside of each. By coincidence the name of the cognac “Filatov” turned to be same as the name of the President of Russian Chess Federation Andrey Filatov and this fact has not escaped the attention of players.

Round 1 pairings:

SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1 GM Giri, Anish 2768 - GM Gelfand, Boris 2748 12 2 GM Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar 2764 - GM Andreikin, Dmitry 2722 11 3 GM Nakamura, Hikaru 2764 - GM Jobava, Baadur 2717 10 4 GM Caruana, Fabiano 2844 - GM Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2757 9 5 GM Kasimdzhanov, Rustam 2706 - GM Jakovenko, Dmitry 2747 8 6 GM Radjabov, Teimour 2726 - GM Karjakin, Sergey 2767 7



First symbolic moves were made by former World Champion Rustam Kasimdzhanov and FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.



Before the opening ceremony the technical meeting took place. The Chief Arbiter of the tournament IA Husan Turdialiev and FIDE CEO Geoffrey Borg explained technical details, reminded the key regulations and helped to choose the Appeal Committee.

The composition of the Appeals Committee in Tashkent 2014 FIDE Grand Prix will be:
Chairman: Javier Ochoa de Echaguen (Spain)
Members: Boris Gelfand (Israel), Teimour Radjabov (Azerbadjan)
Reserves: Rustam Kasimdzhanov (Uzbekistan), Sergei Karjakin (Russian)

Official tournament website http://tashkent2014.fide.com/

Tashkent Grand Prix: Round 2

News FIDE -



Maxime Vachier-Lagrave sole leader after two rounds


Maxime Vachier-Lagrave became the sole leader in the tournament after defeating Rustam Kasimdzhanov. It turned out to be the only decisive game in the second round as all other five encounters finished in a draw. Fabiano Caruana was very close to strike back after his unfortunate start but was held to a draw by Baadur Jobava. Dmitry Andreikin and Hikaru Nakamura were first to finish their game after repeating known line from Anand-Shirov. Anish Giri introduced an interesting novelty in the opening but didn't manage to convert his advantage against Shakhriyar Mamedyarov. Boris Gelfand and Dmitry Jakovenko could not break through stubborn defenses of their opponents Sergey Karjakin and Teimour Radjabov.

Round 2 results
    SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 12 GM Gelfand, Boris 2748 ½ - ½ GM Karjakin, Sergey 2767 7 8 GM Jakovenko, Dmitry 2747 ½ - ½ GM Radjabov, Teimour 2726 6 9 GM Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2757 1 - 0 GM Kasimdzhanov, Rustam 2706 5 10 GM Jobava, Baadur 2717 ½ - ½ GM Caruana, Fabiano 2844 4 11 GM Andreikin, Dmitry 2722 ½ - ½ GM Nakamura, Hikaru 2764 3 1 GM Giri, Anish 2768 ½ - ½ GM Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar 2764 2

Read full Round 2 report here


Round 1: Andreikin, Nakamura and Vachier-Lagrave first winners in Grand Prix


Dmitry Andreikin, Hikaru Nakamura and Maxime Vachier-Lagrave defeated their opponents today, perhaps, inspired by the great Champions Bobby Fisher, Tigran Petrossian and Mikahil Tal (whose portraits are on the background of the photo from the opening ceremony). Maxime Vachier-Lagrave started the Grand Prix series with victory over the top seed of the tournament Fabiano Caruana. In a “must see” game Nakamura vs Jobava, Georgian player sacrificed a rook for 3 pawns but blundered in a very complex position being short of time. Shakhriyar Mamedyarov unexpectedly lost in the endgame with pawn up against Dmitry Andreikin. Three other games Giri-Gelfand, Kasimdzhanov-Jakovenko, Radjabov-Karjakin were drawn. 

Round 1 results
    SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1 GM Giri, Anish 2768 ½ - ½ GM Gelfand, Boris 2748 12 2 GM Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar 2764 0 - 1 GM Andreikin, Dmitry 2722 11 3 GM Nakamura, Hikaru 2764 1 - 0 GM Jobava, Baadur 2717 10 4 GM Caruana, Fabiano 2844 0 - 1 GM Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2757 9 5 GM Kasimdzhanov, Rustam 2706 ½ - ½ GM Jakovenko, Dmitry 2747 8 6 GM Radjabov, Teimour 2726 ½ - ½ GM Karjakin, Sergey 2767 7




Read full Round 1 report here




The second stage of FIDE Grand Prix series 2014-2015 was officially opened on Monday evening at the Gallery of Fine Arts in Tashkent. The tournament's opening ceremony was attended by chess officials, sponsors, national and international media. From 21st of October till 2nd of November over eleven rounds, the strongest players in the world will compete in the round robin tournament. The tournament follows the first stage which recently finished in the capital of Azerbaijan. Fabiano Caruano (ITA) and Boris Gelfand (ISR) tied for the first place in Baku Grand Prix and are the leaders in the third GP series.



The opening ceremony started with speeches. The Chairman of the Chess Federation of Uzbekistan Alisher Saidabbasovich Sultanov took the floor to welcome all participants and guests.



FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov expressed his gratitude to the government of the country for their huge support and decisive contribution into development of chess.



The Chief Arbiter of the tournament IA Husan Turdialiev conducted the ceremony of drawing of lots. Each participant was proposed to choose one of the 12 bottles of cognac with the number inside of each. By coincidence the name of the cognac “Filatov” turned to be same as the name of the President of Russian Chess Federation Andrey Filatov and this fact has not escaped the attention of players.

Round 1 pairings:

SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1 GM Giri, Anish 2768 - GM Gelfand, Boris 2748 12 2 GM Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar 2764 - GM Andreikin, Dmitry 2722 11 3 GM Nakamura, Hikaru 2764 - GM Jobava, Baadur 2717 10 4 GM Caruana, Fabiano 2844 - GM Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2757 9 5 GM Kasimdzhanov, Rustam 2706 - GM Jakovenko, Dmitry 2747 8 6 GM Radjabov, Teimour 2726 - GM Karjakin, Sergey 2767 7



First symbolic moves were made by former World Champion Rustam Kasimdzhanov and FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.



Before the opening ceremony the technical meeting took place. The Chief Arbiter of the tournament IA Husan Turdialiev and FIDE CEO Geoffrey Borg explained technical details, reminded the key regulations and helped to choose the Appeal Committee.

The composition of the Appeals Committee in Tashkent 2014 FIDE Grand Prix will be:
Chairman: Javier Ochoa de Echaguen (Spain)
Members: Boris Gelfand (Israel), Teimour Radjabov (Azerbadjan)
Reserves: Rustam Kasimdzhanov (Uzbekistan), Sergei Karjakin (Russian)

Official tournament website http://tashkent2014.fide.com/

FIDE President visits the new chess school in Tashkent

News FIDE -



On 20th of October before the opening ceremony of Grand Prix in Tashkent, FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, together with the Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Uzbekistan Adham Ilkhamovich Ikramov, Chairman of the Chess Federation of Uzbekistan Alisher Saidabbasovich Sultanov and First Deputy Minister of Sport Muradzhan Bakievich Aliyev visited the new specialized youth chess school recently opened in the center of Tashkent. The school includes training rooms, playing halls, dining room and other facilities.






Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Uzbekistan Adham Ilkhamovich Ikramov and FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov

Tashkent Grand Prix: Round 1

News FIDE -



Round 1: Andreikin, Nakamura and Vachier-Lagrave first winners in Grand Prix


Dmitry Andreikin, Hikaru Nakamura and Maxime Vachier-Lagrave defeated their opponents today, perhaps, inspired by the great Champions Bobby Fisher, Tigran Petrossian and Mikahil Tal (whose portraits are on the background of the photo from the opening ceremony). Maxime Vachier-Lagrave started the Grand Prix series with victory over the top seed of the tournament Fabiano Caruana. In a “must see” game Nakamura vs Jobava, Georgian player sacrificed a rook for 3 pawns but blundered in a very complex position being short of time. Shakhriyar Mamedyarov unexpectedly lost in the endgame with pawn up against Dmitry Andreikin. Three other games Giri-Gelfand, Kasimdzhanov-Jakovenko, Radjabov-Karjakin were drawn. 

Round 1 results
    SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1 GM Giri, Anish 2768 ½ - ½ GM Gelfand, Boris 2748 12 2 GM Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar 2764 0 - 1 GM Andreikin, Dmitry 2722 11 3 GM Nakamura, Hikaru 2764 1 - 0 GM Jobava, Baadur 2717 10 4 GM Caruana, Fabiano 2844 0 - 1 GM Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2757 9 5 GM Kasimdzhanov, Rustam 2706 ½ - ½ GM Jakovenko, Dmitry 2747 8 6 GM Radjabov, Teimour 2726 ½ - ½ GM Karjakin, Sergey 2767 7




Read full Round 1 report here




The second stage of FIDE Grand Prix series 2014-2015 was officially opened on Monday evening at the Gallery of Fine Arts in Tashkent. The tournament's opening ceremony was attended by chess officials, sponsors, national and international media. From 21st of October till 2nd of November over eleven rounds, the strongest players in the world will compete in the round robin tournament. The tournament follows the first stage which recently finished in the capital of Azerbaijan. Fabiano Caruano (ITA) and Boris Gelfand (ISR) tied for the first place in Baku Grand Prix and are the leaders in the third GP series.



The opening ceremony started with speeches. The Chairman of the Chess Federation of Uzbekistan Alisher Saidabbasovich Sultanov took the floor to welcome all participants and guests.



FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov expressed his gratitude to the government of the country for their huge support and decisive contribution into development of chess.



The Chief Arbiter of the tournament IA Husan Turdialiev conducted the ceremony of drawing of lots. Each participant was proposed to choose one of the 12 bottles of cognac with the number inside of each. By coincidence the name of the cognac “Filatov” turned to be same as the name of the President of Russian Chess Federation Andrey Filatov and this fact has not escaped the attention of players.

Round 1 pairings:

SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1 GM Giri, Anish 2768 - GM Gelfand, Boris 2748 12 2 GM Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar 2764 - GM Andreikin, Dmitry 2722 11 3 GM Nakamura, Hikaru 2764 - GM Jobava, Baadur 2717 10 4 GM Caruana, Fabiano 2844 - GM Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2757 9 5 GM Kasimdzhanov, Rustam 2706 - GM Jakovenko, Dmitry 2747 8 6 GM Radjabov, Teimour 2726 - GM Karjakin, Sergey 2767 7



First symbolic moves were made by former World Champion Rustam Kasimdzhanov and FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.



Before the opening ceremony the technical meeting took place. The Chief Arbiter of the tournament IA Husan Turdialiev and FIDE CEO Geoffrey Borg explained technical details, reminded the key regulations and helped to choose the Appeal Committee.

The composition of the Appeals Committee in Tashkent 2014 FIDE Grand Prix will be:
Chairman: Javier Ochoa de Echaguen (Spain)
Members: Boris Gelfand (Israel), Teimour Radjabov (Azerbadjan)
Reserves: Rustam Kasimdzhanov (Uzbekistan), Sergei Karjakin (Russian)

Official tournament website http://tashkent2014.fide.com/

The second stage of GP series has started in Tashkent

News FIDE -




The second stage of FIDE Grand Prix series 2014-2015 was officially opened on Monday evening at the Gallery of Fine Arts in Tashkent. The tournament's opening ceremony was attended by chess officials, sponsors, national and international media. From 21st of October till 2nd of November over eleven rounds, the strongest players in the world will compete in the round robin tournament. The tournament follows the first stage which recently finished in the capital of Azerbaijan. Fabiano Caruano (ITA) and Boris Gelfand (ISR) tied for the first place in Baku Grand Prix and are the leaders in the third GP series.



The opening ceremony started with speeches. The Chairman of the Chess Federation of Uzbekistan Alisher Saidabbasovich Sultanov took the floor to welcome all participants and guests.



FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov expressed his gratitude to the government of the country for their huge support and decisive contribution into development of chess.



The Chief Arbiter of the tournament IA Husan Turdialiev conducted the ceremony of drawing of lots. Each participant was proposed to choose one of the 12 bottles of cognac with the number inside of each. By coincidence the name of the cognac “Filatov” turned to be same as the name of the President of Russian Chess Federation Andrey Filatov and this fact has not escaped the attention of players.

Round 1 pairings:

SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1 GM Giri, Anish 2768 - GM Gelfand, Boris 2748 12 2 GM Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar 2764 - GM Andreikin, Dmitry 2722 11 3 GM Nakamura, Hikaru 2764 - GM Jobava, Baadur 2717 10 4 GM Caruana, Fabiano 2844 - GM Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2757 9 5 GM Kasimdzhanov, Rustam 2706 - GM Jakovenko, Dmitry 2747 8 6 GM Radjabov, Teimour 2726 - GM Karjakin, Sergey 2767 7



First symbolic moves were made by former World Champion Rustam Kasimdzhanov and FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.



Before the opening ceremony the technical meeting took place. The Chief Arbiter of the tournament IA Husan Turdialiev and FIDE CEO Geoffrey Borg explained technical details, reminded the key regulations and helped to choose the Appeal Committee.

The composition of the Appeals Committee in Tashkent 2014 FIDE Grand Prix will be:
Chairman: Javier Ochoa de Echaguen (Spain)
Members: Boris Gelfand (Israel), Teimour Radjabov (Azerbadjan)
Reserves: Rustam Kasimdzhanov (Uzbekistan), Sergei Karjakin (Russian)

Official tournament website http://tashkent2014.fide.com/

Winners of World Junior Chess Championship 2014

News FIDE -



Lu Shanglai of China won the World Junior Chess title by defeating Aleksander Indjic of Serbia.

In the girls section Aleksandra Goryachkina had successfully defended her title with a round to spare yesterday.

LU SHANGLAI OF CHINA WINS WORLD JUNIOR TITLE

PADMINI FINISHES FOURTH AND VIDIT IS PLACED FIFTH

http://www.worldjuniorchess2014.com/


ANIRUDDHA DESHPANDE - CHAIRMAN, ORGANISING COMMITTEE, WORLD JUNIOR CHESS CHAMPIONSHIP, VENKATRAMA RAJA - PRESIDENT AICF, ALEKSANDRA GORYACHKINA, HER EXCELLENCY, EX PRESIDENT OF INDIA, SMT PRATIBHA PATIL, LU SHANGLEI, ASHOK JAIN, PRESIDENT-MCA AND RAVINDRA DONGRE, CHAIRMAN, MAHARASHTRA CHESS ASSOCIATION AT THE GRAND FINALE OF LIC WORLD JUNIOR CHESS CHAMPIONSHIP 2014 IN PUNE.

Intense, exciting tussles on the top boards yielded just one decisive result - Lu Shanglei of China defeating Aleksander Indjic of Serbia, which was enough to crown him the World Junior Chess title at Hotel Hyatt, Pune. In the final 13th round, the race for the title was wide open with four players Wei Yi of China, Duda Jan-Krzysztof of Poland, Vladimir Fedoseev of Russia and Lu Shangleiu, in contention for the title as all were overnight joint leaders with 9 points.

There was a four way tie from second to fourth position where Wei Yi of China secured Silver, Vladimir Fedoseev of Russia bagged bronze while Duda Jan Krzysztof was a trifle unfortunate to go without a medal, finishing fourth after the resolution of the tie-break by the Bucholz system. All four players had scored 9.5 points. Vidit Santosh Gujrathi was the best Indian finisher with 9 points and was placed fifth. Shardul Gagare was the best performer from Maharashtra and was awarded the Pune Mayor Cup in the Open section.

In the Girls section 16-year-old Aleksandra Goryachkina had successfully defended her title with a round to spare yesterday and today settled for a short draw against Anna Iwanova to raise her points tally to 11. Ann Chumpitaz of Peru also drew against Sarvinoz Kurbonboeva while Sarasadat Khademalsharieh of Iran defeated Srija Seshadri of India to bag the bronze, both tallying 9.5 points each. After the tie-breaks Sarasadat secured the Silver medal and Chumpitaz had to settle for the bronze.

Padmini Rout was the best Indian finisher with 9 points and was placed fourth. Rucha Pujari was the winner of the Pune Mayor’s Trophy for Girls as the best performer from Maharashtra.. Today Padmini scored a quick victory over Marina Brunello of Italy. Srija Seshadri had scored 8/11 but lost the last two rounds to finish tenth.

Both Lu Shanglei and Aleksandra Goryachkina earned a qualification slot for the World Cup 2015 for Open and Women respectively. The World Cup is a part of the World Championship Cycle. Both players also received a cash Prize of Rs 1,50000 each. The silver Medalists were richer by RS 100000 each and the bronze medallists by Rs 50000.

This 13 round gruelling Swiss League event was sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone were the Associate sponsors. There were 132 players from 51 countries in fray while the Girls section had 77 players.

The encounters between Wei and Krzysztof was a hard fought Italian game lasting 57 moves before fizzling into a draw. Top seed Fedoseev could not also make much headway and had to settle for a draw after 40 moves. Shanglei opted for the Dutch Defence against Indjic and appeared heading for trouble in the initial stages with Indjic playing positively and aggressively. However White lost way, failed to keep the momentum, did not castle and watched helplessly as Black’s pieces (Knight, queen and rook ) infiltrated decisively to weave a check-mating net.

Final standings:

Open: 1. Lu Shanglei (China) 10 points; 2. Wei Yi (China) 9.5 (106.5 Bucholz), 3. Vladimir Fedoseev (Russia) 9.5 (105.5 Bucholz), 4. Dida Jan-Krzysztof (Poland) 9.5 (99.5 Bucholz), 5. Vidit Gujrathi (India) 9 (94.5 Bucholz), 6. Kamil Dragun (Poland) 9 (92.5 Bucholz), 7. Srinath Narayanan (India) 9 (91.5 Bucholz), 8. Murali Karthikeyan (India) 9 (85.5 Bucholz), 9. Diptayan Ghosh (India) 8.5 (97 Bucholz), 10. Bai Jinshi (China) 8.5 (95.5 Bucholz).

Girls: 1. Aleksandra Goryachkina (Russia) 11 points, 2. Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iran) 9.5 (98.5 Bucholz), 3. Ann Chumpitaz (Peru) 9.5 (97 Bucholz), 4. Padmini Rout (India) 9, 5. Zhai Mo (China) 8.5 (95.5 Bucholz), 6. Anna Iwanow (Poland) 8.5 (95 Bucholz), 7. Sabina Ibrahimova (Azerbaijan) 8.5 (92 BUcholz), 8. Meri Arabidze (Georgia) 8.5 (89.5 Bucholz), 9. Sarvinoz Kurbonboeva (Uzbekistan) 8.5 (81 Bucholz), 10. Srija Seshadri (India) 8 (91 Bucholz).

Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Wei Yi (Chn) 9.5 drew Duda Jan-Krzysztof ( Pol) - 9.5 ; Kamil Dragun (Pol)-9 drew Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus) - 9.5; Aleksander Indjic (Srb)-8 lost to Lu Shanglei (Chn)-10 ; Vidit Santosh Gujrathi (9) bt Quinten Ducarmon (Ned) - 8 ; Jorge Cori (Per)-8 lost to Karthikeyan M (9 ); Grigoriy Oparin (Rus)-8 lost to N Srinath-9 ; Bai Jinshi (Chn)-8.5 drew Gosh Diptayan-8.5; Benjamin Bok (8.5) bt AryanTari (8); Robin Van Kampen (Ned)-8.5 bt Aravindh Chitharambaram (7.5); Prasanna Raghuram Rao (8) drew Karen Grigoryan (Arm)-8

Girls Section

Aleksandra Goryachkina (Rus) - 11 drew Anna Iwanow (Pol)-8.5; Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-9.5 drew Sarvinoz Kurbonboeva (Uzb)-8.5; Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri)-9.5 bt Srija Seshadri -8 ; Padmini Rout (9) bt Marina Brunello (Ita); Daria Pushtovoitova (Rus)-7.5 lost to Arabidze Meri (Geo); Irina Petrukhina (Rus) 7.5- lost to Zhai Mo (Chn)-8.5 ; Ivana Maria Furtado-7.5 lost to Sabina Ibrahimova-8.5; Ni Shiqun (Chn)-8 bt Mahalakshmi M- 7.5; P V Nandhidhaa-7 lost to Maria Gevorgyan (Arm)-8 ; Monisha G K -7 lost to Joana Gelip (Rou)-8

Round 12

ALEKSANDRA GORYACHKINA WINS WORLD JUNIOR GIRLS TITLE WITH A ROUND TO SPARE

The Russians were not ready to be dismissed by the Chinese and rose to the occasion in the 12thand penultimate round of the LIC World junior Chess championship which is in the concluding stages at Hotel Hyatt in Pune. Alexandra Goryachkina scored a thumping Grand Double, successfully defending her title which she won at Turkey last year with a round to spare in the Girls section by defeating Srija Seshadri.

Her compatriot Vladimir Fedoseev, the top seed opened the doors towards the title in the open section to keep the contest alive just when the Chinese appeared to be running away with the title. In an exciting tussle on the top board, Fedoseev defeated sole leader Wei Yi to share joint leader status.


VLADIMIR FEDOSEEV FROM RUSSIA  DEFEATED WEI YI OF CHINA

Goryachkina has tallied a whopping 10.5 points and maintained a clean slate. Ann Chumpitaz of Peru is trailing in second place with 9 points, Sarasadat Khademalsharieh follows next with 8.5 points and Padmini Rout, Srija Seshadri along with three others are bunched together with 8 points. Tomorrow, on Sunday the final round will commence at 10.00 AM. 


ALEKSANDRA GORYACHKINA FROM RUSSIA MAKING A MOVE AGAINST SRIJA SESHADRI FROM INDIA. ALEKSANDRA WON THE GAME AND THE CHAMPIONSHIP.

In the Open section there is a four way tie at the top with Fedoseev, Wei, Lu Shanglei of China and Duda Jan-Krzysztof of Poland all totalling 9 points each. Kamil Dragun of Poland follows next with 8.5 points while Vidit Santosh Gujrathi along with eight others has scored 8 points each.

From the Indian angle, Padmini Rout, our best medal hope conceded another draw to Anna Iwanow, making things more difficult for her. Padmini opting for the Modern Defence had to split point despite an extra pawn in a rook and bishop each ending after 52 moves and has logged 8 points Fedoseev after an indifferent first half has been working his way steadily up the points ladder and today capitalized on an opening inaccuracy by We Yi to score a smooth victory. Fedoseev however modestly said” It was a bad day for Wei as he made a mistake in the opening variation”. Wei adopted the Grunfeld Defene but got into a severely cramped position after some dubious queen and pawn moves on the 11th and 12th turn. Thereafter in a desperate bid to gain some counter-play, he tried to attack on the Kingside but Fedoseev played sensible and simple chess, first advancing his passed pawn in the centre to seventh rank and then accepting the queen offer of his opponent for a rook and two minor pieces. Left with hardly any play on board Wei resigned on the 35th move.

In contrast Jorge Cori of Peru impressive in the first half, has been steadily losing way and today was upset by Duda Jan-Krzysztof of Poland.

One more round is remaining in this 13 round gruelling event sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors.

Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)-9 bt Wei Yi (Chn)-9; Lu Shanglei (Chn)-9 drew Kamil Dragun (Pol)-8.5; Duda Jan-Krzysztof (Pol)-9 bt Jorge Cori (Per)-9; Karthikeyan M-8 drew Vidit Santosh Gujrathi-8 ; Quinten Ducarmon (Ned)-8 drew Aleksander Indjic (Srb)-8; Aryan Tari (Nor)-8 drew Grigoriy Oparin (Rus)-8 ; Ankit Rajpara-7.5 drew Bai Jinshi (Chn)-7.5; Aravindh Chithambaram-7.5 drew Benjamin Bok-7.5 ; Karen Grigoriyan (Arm)-7.5 drew Anurag Mhamal-7.5 ; N Srinath-8 bt Vladislav Kovalev (Blr)-7; Diptayan Ghosh -7.5 drew Borya Ider (Fra)-7.5

Girls Section

Aleksandra Goryachkin (Rus)-10.5 bt Srija Seshadri-8 ; Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)-7.5 bt Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-9 ; Meri Arabidze(Geo)-7.5 lost to Sarasadat Khademalshaarieh (Iri)-8.5 ; Anna Iwanow (Pol)-8 drew Padmini Rout-8 ; Marina Brunello (Ita)-8 bt Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-7.5 ; Zhai Mo (Chn)-7.5 drew Ivana Maria Furtado-7.5 ; Ioana Gelip (Rou)-7 lost to Sarvinoz Kurbonboeva (Uzb)-8; Nguyen Thi Mai (Vie)-7 drew G K Monnisha-7


Round 11

VIDIT GUJRATHI COVERS SOME GROUND WITH A VICTORY, WEI YI IN SOLE LEAD

ALEKSANDRA GORYACHKINA IN SIGHT OF THE TITLE

BAD DAY FOR INDIA

Wei Yi of China continued his merciless march towards the title with a comprehensive victory over Karen Grigoryan of Armenia in the 11th round of the World Junior Chess Championship being played at Hotel Hyatt, Pune. His compatriot Lu Shanglei who had been matching pace with him was held to a draw by Griogriy Oparin of Russia. Wei is the sole leader now with a tally of 9 points while Shanglei is the sole occupant of the second spot with 8.5 points.


WEI YI OF CHINA MAKING A MOVE AGAINST GRIGORYAN KAREN FROM ARMENIA. WEI YI DEFEATED KAREN AND TOPS THE POINTS TALLY

Kamil Dragun and Duda Jan-Krzysztof of Poland defeated Aravindh Chithambaram and Irakali Beradze respectively to move up to third spot with 8 points each. In fact the Indians were at the receiving end on the top boards with top seed Vladimir Fedoseev outplaying Diptayan Ghosh and Jorge Cori scoring over Ankit Rajpara to also tally 8 points apiece.

Vidit Santosh Gujrathi who had been bogged down, covered some ground by defeating Christopher Repka of Slovakia in a miniature lasting 20 moves to total 7.5 points . Karthikeyan Murali defeated Balazs Csonka to also tally 7.5 points , the highest by Indians . Incidentally there are 7 players with 7.5 points each to their credit.

In the Girls section, top seed and defending Champion Aleksandra Goryachkina also looks unstoppable as she has built up a sizeable 1.5 point lead over the next placed Srija Seshadri of India and Ann Chumpitaz of Peru. Goryachkiina defeated Zhai Mo of China today and has tallied 9.5 points. Padmini Rout was held to a draw by Chumpitaz while Srija scored over P V Nandhidhaa.”

Grigoryan opting for the Petroff Defence perhaps was an indication of his mind-set for this defence has become a popular weapon with Black to enhance drawing chances at the higher level of the game. However Wei who has been in tremendous form, played simply and effectively to capitalize on his extra pawn and positional advantage by exchanging pieces to reach a winning queen and pawn ending. Grigoryan resigned on the 33rd move when Wei threatened to march his pawn to the queening square. 


ALEKSANDRA GORYACHKINA FROM RUSSIA MAKING A MOVE AGAINST ZHAI MO FROM CHINA

The Queen’s Gambit game between Dragun and Aravindh had interesting moments in the Opening stages with the former’s King literally pulled out into the open after the early exchange of queens. Interestingly Dragun’s King walked back to the castled position even as Aravindh failed to maintain the balance of the game. Dragun kept improving his position and after the transposition into the rook pawn ending, the King again walked onto the queen-side to escort his two passed pawn and sealed the game in his favour after 51 moves.

Two more rounds are remaining in this 13 round gruelling event sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors.

Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Wei Yi (Chn)-9 bt Grigoriyan Karen (Arm)-7 ; Grigoriy Oparin (Rus)-7.5 drew Lu Shanglei (Chn)-8.5 ; Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)-8 bt Diptayan Ghosh-7 ; Jorge Cori (Per) Ankit Rajpara ; Irakli Beradze (Geo )7 lost to Duda Jan Krzysztof (Pol)-8 ; Bai Jinshi (Chn) Aleksander Indjic (Srb); Kamil Dragun (Pol)-8 bt Aravindh Chithambaram-7 ; Vidit Santosh Gujrathi-7.5 bt Christopher Repka (Svk)-6.5; Aryan Tari (Nor )-7.5 bt Mikhail Atipov (Rus)-6.5; Karthikeyan M-7.5 bt Balazs Csonka (Hun)-6.5 ; Borya Ider (Fra)-7 drew Ulvi Bajarani (Aze)-7 ; Benjamin Bok-7 bt (Phi) S L Narayanan-6

Girls Section

Aleksandra Goryachkina (Rus)-9.5 bt Zhai Mo (Chn)-7 ; Padmini Rout-7.5 drew Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-8 ; Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-7.5 drew Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri)-7.5 ; Srija Seshadri-8 bt P V Nandhidhaa-6.5 ; Irina Petrukhina (Rus)-6.5 lost to Meri Arabidze (Geo)-7.5; Anna Iwanow (Pol)-7.5 bt Maria Gevorgyan (Arm)-6.5 ; Mona Khaled (Egy)-6.5 lost to Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)-7.5; Jodilyn Jan Fronda(Phi)-6.5 drew Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Vie)-6.5 ; Marina Brunello (Ita)-7 bt Vaishali R-6 ; Sarvinoz Kurbonboeva (Uzb)-7 bt Rucha Pujari-6 ; Ivana Maria Furtado-7 bt Tianlu Gu (Chn)-6



Round 10

ANKIT RAJPARA DEFEATS NARAYANAN

The Chinese duo Lu Shanglei and Wei Yi emphatically exhibited rising Chess power by scoring convincing victories over Russians, Vladimir Fedoseev, the top seed in fray here and Mikhail Antipov in the 10th round of the LIC World Junior Chess Championship at Hotel Hyatt, Pune. These victories ensured that the Chinese maintained their joint leader status with 8 points each. Aravindh Chithambaram, Ankit Rajpara and Diptayan Ghosh along with 10 other foreigners are trailing in second place with 7 points each.

In the Girls section, top seed Aleksandra Goryachkina who had shot into sole lead, enhanced her lead with the shortest victory in this edition of the World junior defeating Sarasadat Khademalsharieh of Iran in just 10 moves. India’s strong contender for the title, Padmini Rout slipped back farther with a draw against Meri Arabidze of Georgia. Aleksandra has now tallied 8.5 points and Ann Chumpitaz of Peru is trailing a point behind in second position. Padmini Rout, Srija Seshadri along with five overseas players are bunched together in third place with 7 points each.

From the Indian angle, the day belonged to rising talented teenager Aravindh Chithambaram who showcased his defensive skills and perseverance in wriggling out of an inferior position against super GM Jorge Cori of Peru to split the point. S L Narayanan after making a GM norm yesterday ended on the losing side against Ankit Rajpara in an English game which lasted 44 moves.


Ankit Rajpara defeated S L Narayanan at the on going LIC World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

Playing against the Sicilian defence adopted by Cori, Aravindh castled on the queen-side and spent the early part of the game trying to repulse an attack on his King. Cori did not castle and spent his time and effort in enhancing his advantage. By the 45th turn a loss loomed large for Aravindh as his pieces were pushed back and they lacked co-ordination. However a blunder by Cori on the 45th turn in the form of a knight move had Aravindh immediately retaliating with a tactical stroke which earned him a pawn and better square for his pieces. The table turned to such an extent that Aravindh appeared better by the 67th turn but the players decided to call it a day on the 77th move by repeating their moves. An exhausted Arvind later confessed “ I am mentally unable to understand the hidden aspects in this position as the game was so complex but it was really bad for me in the middle-game.

Sarasadat appeared to lose way in the Opening stages of a Queen’s Gambit against Aleksandra on the 9th move itself. A move later, landing in an inferior position, the Iranian preferred to resign rather than continue in agony and almost rushed out of the tournament hall in tears.

Three more rounds are remaining in this 13 round gruelling event sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors.

Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Lu Shanglei (Chn)-8 bt Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)-7 ; Mikhail Antipov (Rus)-6.5 lost to Wei Yi (Chn)-8; Aravindh Chithambaram-7 drew Jorge Cori (Per)-7 ; Karen Grigoriya (Arm)-7 drew Bai Jinshi(Chn)-7; Diptayan Ghosh-7 drew Kamil Dragun (Pol)-7 ; Duda Jan-Krzysztof (Pol)-7 bt Paulo Bersamina (Phi)-6 ; Indjic Aleksander (Srb)-7 bt Sayantan Das-6 ; S L Narayanan-6 lost to Ankit Rajpara-7 ; Christopher Repka (Svk)-6.5 drew M Karthikeyan-6.5 : Prasanna Rao-6 lost to Irakali Beradze (Geo)-7 ; Vidit Santosh Gujrathi-6.5 bt Linus Johansson (Swe)-5.5.

Girls Section

Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri) - 7 lost to Aleksandra Goryachikina (Rus)-8.5; Zhai Mo (Chn)-7 drew Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-7 ; Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-7.5 bt Anna Iwanow (Pol)- 6.5; Meri Arabidze (Geo)-6.5 drew Padmini Rout-7; P V Nandhidhaa-6.5 drew Irina Petrukhina (Rus)-6.5 ; Ioana Gelip (Rou)-6 lost to Srija Seshadri-7; Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Vie)-6 drew Janelle Mae Frayna (Phi)-6 ; Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)- Varshini V ; Rucha Pujari Ivana Maria Furtado ; Maria Gevorgyan (Arm) Michelle Catherina ; Jodilyn Jan Fronda Madhurima Shekhar ; Pratyusha Bodda - 5 lost to Sarvinoz Kurbonboeva (Uzb)-6 ; Supreeta Potluri -6 bt Tea Gucci (Ita).


Round 9

GOOD DAY FOR INDIA - S L NARAYANAN EARNS GM NORM, P V NANDHIDHAA COMPLETES WIM TITLE REQUIREMENTS AND PADMINI ROUT BOUNCES BACK WITH A VICTORY

16-year-old S L Narayanan has easily been the pick of the Indian players in display at the World Junior Chess Championship in progress at Hotel Hyatt Pune. In the 9th round today Narayanan today held compatriot and fourth seed Vidit Santosh Gujrathi to a draw and earned his first GM norm. In the Girls section, 18-year-old P V Nandhidhaa defeated Pratyusha Bodda in a dramatic way to make her third WIM norm and complete the requirements for her WIM title. Incidentally Pratyusha also made her WIM norm.

“My IM title was confirmed last month and this is my first GM norm” said the shy and soft spoken Narayanan while Nandhidhaa was visibly excited and gushed “ I made my first two norms in 2011 and 2012 and then missed making my final norm on seven occasions. Today I was very lucky as my opponent blundered on the last move in a dead draw position.”

On the top board Aleksandra Goryachkina defeated Ann Chumpitaz of Peru to shoot into sole lead with 7.5 points. Sarasadat Khademalsharieh is trailing half a point behind while Padmini, Dari Pustovoitova, Zhai Mo, Ann Chumpitaz and Anna Iwanow are bunched together with 6.5 points. Daria Pustovoitova also earned a WIM norm.

In the Open section the top board encounter between the two Chinese players Wei Ye and Lu Shanglei ended in a draw while top seed Fedoseev scored a victory over overnight joint leader Karen Grigoryan. Wei, Lu and Fedoseev are jointly leading with 7 points each. Eight players including Diptayan Ghosh and Aravindha Chithambaram of India are trailing just half a point behind the leaders.

The encounter between Bai Jinshi and Mikhail Antipov was one of the first ones to end in a draw. Jinshi with this draw has earned a 9 round Swiss League GM norm.

If Mae FraynaJanelle hoped to shock her opponent Padmini Rout with her choice of the ‘Alekhine Defence’ (which very rarely makes an appearance these days) on the very first move, then it was an effort wasted. “ I had done my homework and realized she experiments with different Openings and to a certain extent I was expecting this Opening” smiled Padmini after shrugging off yesterday’s loss and bouncing back with a victory.

Padmini Rout won a pawn in a tactical skirmish on the 20th turn which also saw the exchange of queens. Thereafter a flurry of exchanges followed and it appeared that despite an extra pawn, Padmini would really have to toil for a victory. Mae however failed to play accurately and ended on the losing side after 45 moves. In a thrilling encounter between Anna Iwanow and Sarasadat Khademalsharieh in a Spanish Opening, Anna surprisingly sacrificed a bishop for a couple of pawns in the early stages of the Opening. Thereafter she tried to whip up a whirlwind attack even as both Kings stayed on their original squares without castling. Sarasadat’s Kingside pawns were totally shattered but her queen, rook and bishop pair then launched a counter-offensive to win the game after 25 moves. “ After the Opening inaccuracy, there was nothing much to do to win the game” said Sarasadat.

Four more rounds are remaining in this 13 round gruelling event sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors.

Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Wei Yi (Chn)-7 drew Lu Shanglei (Chn)-7 ; Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)- 7 bt GM Karen Grigoryan (Arm)-6.5; Jorge Cori (Per)-6.5 drew Diptayan Ghosh-6.5 ; Bai Jinshi (Chn)-6.5 drew Mikhail Antipov (Rus)-6.5 ; Grigoriy Oparin (Rus)-6 drew Prasanna Rao-6 ; Kamil Dragun (Pol)-6.5 bt N Srinath-5.5 ; Linus Johansson (Swe)-5.5 lost to Aravindh Chidhambaram-6.5 ; Aryan Tari (Nor)-5.5 lost to Paulo Bersamina-6.5 ; S L Narayanan-6 drew Vidit Santosh Gujrathi-6 ; Tadeas Kriebel (Cze)-6 bt Robin Van Kampen (Ned)-5 ; Anurag Mhamal-5 lost to Duda Jan-Krzysztof (Pol)-6; Ankit Rajpara-6 bt Ege Koksal (Tur)-5 ; M Karthikeyan-6 bt Rajdeep Sarkar-5; Ritviz Parab-5 lost to Quinten Ducarmon (Ned)-6

Girls Section

Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-6.5 lost to Aleksandra Goryachkina (Rus)-7.5; Anna Iwanow (Pol)-6.5 lost to Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri)-7 ; Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-6.5 bt Ioana Gelip (Rou)- 6 ; Mo Zhai (Chn)-6.5 bt Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)-5.5 ; Padmini Rout -6.5 bt Mae Frayna Janelle (Phi)-5.5; Tea Gueci (Ita)-5 lost to Meri Arabidze (Geo)-6 ; Michelle Catherina-5.5 drew Nguyen Thi Mai Hung-5.5 ; Srija Seshadri-6 bt Marina Brunello (Ita)-5 ; IrinaPetrukhina (Rus) Vlada Sviridova (Rus); Nandhidhaa P V -6 bt Pratyusha Bodda- 5 ; Ivana Maria Furtado-5.5 drew Madhurima Shekhar-5.5 ; Varshini V-5.5 drew Cyrielle MonPeurt (Fra)-5.5.

Official tournament website

Round 8

A DAY OF UPSETS AS INDIANS LOSE WAY ON TOP BOARDS

Anna Iwanow of Poland, Chumpitaz Ann of Peru and Goryachkina Aleksandra from Russia are jointly leading the 77 player event with 6.5 points each.

Padmini Rout’s unbeaten stint was spoiled by top seed Aleksandra Goryachkina of Russia much to the disappointment of the Indian camp in the 8th round of the LIC World Junior Girls Chess Championship which continued after a day’s rest at Hotel Hyatt, Pune. In the Girls section, Daria Pustovoitova lost to Anna Iwanow of Poland. Anna Iwanow of Poland, Chumpitaz Ann of Peru and Goryachkina Aleksandra from Russia are jointly leading the 77 player event with 6.5 points each. Sarasadat Khademalsharieh is trailing the leader by half a point while Padmini remains on 5.5 points.

In fact, collectively it was not a good outing for Indians playing on top boards as Ivana Maria Furtado also ended on the losing side against third seed Sarasadat Khademalsharieh. Rucha Pujari, Shweta Gole. Sakshi Chitalange and Pv Nandhidhaa all ended on the losing side.

In the Open section sole leader Jorge Cori was upset by Karen Grigoryan of Armenia while Lu Shanglei of China defeated higher rated Benjamin Bok of Netherland. S L Narayanan who had been going great guns ended on the losing side against third seed Wei Yi of China after maintaining a balance for most part of the game. Karen, Wei and Shanglei have emerged joint leaders with 6.5 points each. Cori, Vladimir Fedoseev, Mikhail Antipov, Diptayan Ghosh and Bai Jinshi are trailing just half a point behind the leaders. 


Wei Yi from China (Left) defeated India's Sunilduth Lyna Narayanan at the on-going LIC World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

Padmini mishandled the Stonewall variation of the Dutch Defence against Goryachkina and the Russians rooks, queen and knight were soon threatening a major offensive on the King-side, right from the early middle-game stages. Padmini’s queen and rook were virtually out of play stranded on the queenside and her castle was broken. A wrong central pawn push on the 25th turn by Padmini suddenly opened up the gates towards her King and Goryachkina crashed through to pocket the point after 34 moves. 


Goryachkina Aleksandra from Russia (Left) defeated India's Padmini Rout (Right) at the on-going LIC World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

Five more rounds are remaining in this 13 round gruelling event sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors.

Narayanan opted for the Caro-Kann Defence against Wei Yi and played solidly to keep the position even in the middle-game. After the transposition to the ending where each player had a knight and rook, a draw loomed large but Narayanan lost a couple of pawns on the way and ended on the losing side after 79 moves.

Vidit Gujrathi was one of the early finishers scoring a rapid 34 move victory over Matej Blazeka of Croatia.


Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Karen Grigoryan (Arm)-6.5 bt Jorge Cori (Per)-6 ; Wei Yi (Chn)-6.5 bt S L Narayanan-5.5 ; Lu Shanglei (Chn)-6.5 bt Benjamin Bok (Ned)-5; Quinten Ducarmon (Ned)-5 lost to Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)-6; Aravindh Chithambaram-5.5 drew Grigoriy Oparin (Rus)-5.5; Mikhail Antipov (Rus)-6 bt Anurag Mhamal-5; Diptayan Ghosh-6 bt Tadeas Kriebel (Cze)-5; Ulvi Bajarani (Aze)-5 lost to Bai Jinshi (Chn)-6; Aleksander Indjic (Srb)-5 drew Linus Johanson (Swe)-5.5 ; VladislavKovalev (Blr)-5 drew Ben Artzi Ido (Isr)-5; Shardul Gagare-4.5 lost to Kamil Dragun (Pol)-5.5; Balazs Csonka (Hun)-5 drew Ankit Rajpara-5; Prasanna Raghuraman -5.5 bt Prince Bajaj-4.5 ; Rajdeep Sarkar-5 drew Sayantan Das-5; N Niranjan-4.5 lost to N Srinath-5.5; Vidit Santosh Gujrathi -5 bt Matej Blazeka (Cro)-4.

Girls Section

Aleksandra Goryachkina (Rus)-6.5 bt Padmini Rout-5.5 ; Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-5.5 lost to Anna Iwanow (Pol)-6.5; Marina Brunello (Ita)-5 lost to Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-6.5; Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri)- 6 bt Ivana Maria Furtado-5 ; Ioana Gelip (Rou)-6 bt P V Nandhidhaa-6 ; Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Vie)-5 drew Srija Seshadri-5 ; Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)-5.5 bt Rucha Pujari-4.5 ; Irina Petrukhina (Rus) Varshini V; Mae Frayna Janelle (Phi)-5.5 bt ShwetaGole-4.5; Meri Arabidze (Geo)-5 bt Sakshi Chitlange-5 ; Pratyusha Bodda-5 bt Mila Zarkovic (Cro)-4


Round 7: ANURAG MHAMAL SHOCKS SECOND SEED ROBIN VAN KAMPEN

In the most sensational result of the day Goa based Anurag Mhamal defeated second seed Robin Van Kampen of Netherland in the dying stages of the game. Battling in a minus position against the Sicilian defence, Anurag was delighted when Kampen in severe time trouble blundered and resigned on the 47th move when his bishop got trapped.


He is not a GM yet, nor does his Rating reflect his strength but S L Narayanan hailing from Kerala has undoubtedly been the most impressive Indian face in the LIC World Junior Chess Championship which has reached the halfway stage at Hotel Hyatt, Pune. In the seventh round Narayanan (2420) drew against GM Lu Shanglei (2533) of China and has logged highest points amongst the Indians in fray.

However Jorge Cori of Peru shot into sole lead with 6 points after defeating Mikhail Antipov of Russia while Lu, Narayanan, Wei Yi of China and Karen Grigoryan of Armenia are trailing in second place with 5.5 points each. In the Girls section Padmini Rout, Aleksandra Goryachkina and Daria Pustovoitova of Russia, Ann Chumpitaz of Peru and Anna Iwanow of Poland are jointly leading with 5.5 points each.

In the Girls section, the tough contest between overnight joint leaders Padmini and Daria of Russia ended with the honours shared after a hard fought 68 moves where Padmini was always on the troubled, defending side.’ It was a very tough game to defend and a mistake by my opponent helped in salvaging a draw” said Padmini.

Top seed and defending Champion Aleksandra Goryachkina defeated compatriot Mae Frayna Janelle to total 5.5 points. Ivana Maria Furtado of India defeated Monisha Gk and has scored 5 points.

The 13 round gruelling event is sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors. It was a setback as Sahaj Grover ended on the losing side against higher rated Karen Grigoryan of Armenia. Monday is a rest day for the event and the 8th round will be played on Tuesday.

The Queen’s Gambit Opening between Narayanan and Lu was a rather sedate affair where the Chinese did not waste any opportunity in exchanging pieces. By the 20th turn the game had already transposed into an ending with a light squared bishop, a rook and six pawns each. Thereafter it was an interesting duel in the ending where both players exhibited ambition of trying to probe for a win. However with both playing solidly, slowly the pawns and pieces were exchanged and a draw sealed on the 53rd move with just the Kings standing on board. Vidit Santosh Gujrathi, the highest rated player in fray had to settle for another draw against Irakli Beradze of Georgia and with just 4 points in his kitty needs to score heavily in the remaining rounds to be in contention for a medal.


India's Narayanan Sunilduth Lyna making a move aginst Lu Shanglei from China. The game ended in a draw.


Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Jorge Cori (Per)-6 Bt Mikhail Antiipov (Rus)-5; S L Narayanan-5.5 Lu Shanglei (Chn)-5.5; Grigoriy Oparin (Rus)-5 drew Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)-5; Aryan Tari (Nor)-4.5 lost to Wei Yi (Chn)-5.5; Benjamin Bok (Ned)-5 bt Ulvi Bajarani (Aze)-5 ; Sahaj Grover-4.5 lost to Karen Grigoryan (Arm)-5.5; Vladislav Kovalev (Blr)-4.5 drew Bai Jinshi (Chn)-4.5; Anurag Mhamal-5 bt Robin Van Kampen (Ned)-4; Tadeas Kriebel (Cze)-5 bt Duda Jan Krzysztof (Pol)-4 ; Harsha Bharathkoti-4 lost to Diptayan Ghosh-5 ; Aravindh Chithambaram ​- 5 ​Ufuk Arat (Tur)

Girls Section

Padmini Rout-5.5 drew Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-5.5; Aleksandra Goryachkina (Rus)-5.5 bt Mae Frayna Janelle (Rus)-4.5; Nandhshaa Pv-5 drew Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri)-5; Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-5.5 bt Mo Zhai (Chn)-4.5; Anna Iwanow-5.5 bt (Pol) Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)-4.5; Rucha Pujari-4.5 drew Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Vie)-4.5; Marina Brunello (Ita)-5 bt Pratyusha Bodda-4; Srija SeshadriIrina-4.5 drew Petrukhina (Rus)-4.5; Maria Ivana Furtado-5 bt Monisha Gk-5.


Official tournament website



ROUND 1: VIDIT OFF TO A FLYING START

Vidit Santosh Gujrathi got off to a flying start by quickly winning the first round of the World Junior Chess Championship which commenced at Hotel Hyatt, Pune today. The long 13-round gruelling event sponsored by LIC kicked off with 137 players from 50 countries and 78 participants in the Girls Category. The co-sponsors for this event are Amanora, Everstone, Jain Irrigation, ONGC with a substantial financial assistance from Government of Maharashtra. Second seed Robin Van Kampen also quickly won his game against Jan Rindlisbacher of Switzerland with Black pieces in 28 moves after adopting the Sicilian Defence.

FM Rakesh Kumar Jena rated 2164 created a flutter when he held higher rated and 10th seed GM Grigoryan of Russia to a draw after 30 moves of a Sicilian Defence. Vidit the fourth seed was pitted against compatriot Ritviz Parab rated 71st with the Black pieces and opted for a super sharp – Sicilian defence against the King Pawn Opening. “I had decided to play aggressively and am happy that my gamble played off as I managed to get an advantageous position early on” beamed Vidit after the game. A tentative and timid pawn push in the centre on the 15th turn by Ritviz had Vidit immediately pushing his pawn more boldly in the centre to get advantage. Another wrong queen move on the next turn had Vidit smelling victory and his queen, rook and knight soon swung into action to decide the game in his favour after 23 moves.

Iranian player FM Amir Kousarania (2331) missed his flight and hence was not paired in the first round. He will begin his campaign from the second round.

In the Girls section WIM Zhao Mo of China defeated WFM San Diego Marie Antoinette.


Indian top seeded Vidit Gujrathi planning a move at the on-going World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune


Fedoseev Vladimir, the top seeded player from Russia  at the on-going World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune


Aleksandra Goryachkina from Russia, top ranking player in the girls category at the on-going World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

Official tournament website

At a glittering ceremony at Hotel Hyatt, attended by eminent dignitaries from the sporting, entertainment and corporate world, the World Junior Chess Championship (WJCC) 2014 was declared open in Pune. Mr S K Roy, Chairman, Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) inaugurated the event in the presence of Robert Zsifkovits - Official FIDE representative, Mr Ashok Jain, President, Maharashtra Chess Association (MCA), Mr Aniruddha Deshpande, Vice President, MCA and Chairman WJCC Organising Committee, Mr Jairaj Pathak, Former President, Maharashtra Chess Association. The tournament will be played from 6th October to 19th October and will be conducted in the Swiss League format, comprising of 13 rounds with one round scheduled each day.





















Vidit Gujrathi, Mr. Ashok Jain, President - MCA, Mr. Neeraj Agarwal, Executive Director - LIC of India, Justice Mahadevan, Mr. Aniruddha Deshpande, VP - MCA, Chairman - WJCC Organizing Committee, Mr. S. K Roy, Chairman - LIC of India, Bharat Singh Chauhan, CEO - AICF, Aleksandra Goryachkina, Mr. Jairaj Pathak, Former President MCA making the first move to mark the inauguration of World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

More than 135 players in the open category and over 75 girls from over 45 countries will battle it out for the coveted title of World Junior Champion and World Junior Girls Champion respectively and stake the sole qualifying slot in both sections for the forthcoming World Cup which is part of the World Championship Cycle. The winners would also take home cash prize of Rs 6,00,000 (Six Lakhs). As a special recognition, the best Indian performer in both the sections will be presented with the Pune Mayor’s trophy. Apart from the titles, there will be GM, IM, WGM and WIM norms at stake for players performing creditably to meet the technical requirements.

The Chief Guest of the function S K Roy, Chairman, LIC speaking on the occasion said, “I am thankful to Maharashtra Chess Association for inviting me to inaugurate this prestigious tournament. The game of chess has its origin in India and the country has produced many Champions who have won international accolades. I can see a future World Champion in each one of you and would like to wish every participant all the very best for this tournament. Life Insurance Corporation of India is proud to be associated with this championship and we would like to extend our wishes to the organizers of this tournament in making this event, a grand success.”

Mr Ashok Jain, said, “It is indeed a moment of great pride for me and my entire team to organize this Championship for the first time in Maharashtra. MCA has been carrying out various initiatives for the development of the game of chess in the State. We have initiated the novel Maharashtra Chess League (MCL), the first Chess League in the country which has been a big hit in both its editions. MCA has also introduced the ‘Chess In Schools’ (CIS), another initiative to introduce chess at the grass roots. Currently there are 186 schools with about 9500 students enrolled in the programme and the target is to reach out to 500 schools and about 50,000 students in the next couple of years. I am sure that these initiatives will go a long way in creating more and more awareness for the game of chess in the State and the country and assist in producing many more Champions. I wish you all luck and encourage you to play good quality and competitive chess.”

Addressing the gathering, Mr Aniruddha Deshpande, said, “I welcome all the dignitaries, officials, coaches and players to the city of Pune. Apart from academics, Pune has also become an important centre for major sporting activities in India and chess has a rich tradition and culture in our city. The city has produced many a champions and I am sure that this championship will provide an ideal platform for our players to interact and get exposed to global talent. I would like to thank the Government of Maharashtra and all our sponsors for their support to this tournament. Our entire team is highly elated and charged up at organizing this grand championship and would like to assure you that we will leave no stone unturned in making this championship truly memorable and a grand success.”

The WJCC-2014 is being jointly organized by the MCA and Pune District Chess Circle (PDCC) under the auspices of AICF (All India Chess Federation) and FIDE (Federation Internationale des Echecs, World Chess Federation). The organizing committee of WJCC-2014 comprises prominent chess players and key personalities of various Chess Associations namely Ashok Jain, Ravindra Dongre, Zone President of World Chess Federation (FIDE) and, Treasurer, AICF and, Chairman of MCA, Siddharth Mayur, Vice President of the PDCC, Niranjan Godbole, Secretary of PDCC, Chess Grand Master Abhijt Kunte, Prakash Kunte and Moreshwar Bhagwat.

International Conference Chess in Schools in Yerevan

News FIDE -



From 16 to 18 October, 2014, an International Conference “Chess in Schools” was held in Yerevan, Armenia, organized by the Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Armenia, the World Chess Federation (FIDE), as well as the Armenian Chess Federation and the Chess Academy of Armenia, in cooperation with the Armenian State Pedagogical University named after Khachatur Abovyan.

FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov and President of the Republic of Armenia, President of the Armenian Chess federation, Serzh Sargsyan welcomed the participants of the conference.

Academic Board of the conference:
- GM Smbat Lputian, Vice-President of the Armenian Chess Federation, Founder and President of the Chess Academy of Armenia
- Ruben Aghuzumtsyan, PhD in Psychology, Professor, Head of Chair of Psychology of Management, Public Administration Academy of RA
- Vladimir Karapetyan, Doctor of Psychological Sciences, Professor of Armenian State Pedagogical University after Khachatur Abovyan
- Heghine Khachatryan, Docent of Armenian State Pedagogical University after Khachatur Abovyan
- Hasmik Khalapyan, Doctor of Philosophy in History, Academic Director of Armenian Virtual College
- Samvel Misakyan, Methodologist, Mathematician, Armenian State Pedagogical University after Khachatur Abovyan
- Kristine Tanajyan, Sociologist, Armenian State Pedagogical University after Khachatur Abovyan


The opening session of the conference with a great number of the participants


Armen Ashotyan, Minister of Education & Science of Republic of Armenia


FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov


FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov and Serzh Sargsyan, President of Republic of Armenia, President of the Armenian Chess Federation


Ruben Aghuzumtsyan, PhD in Psychology, Prof., Head of Chair of Psychology of Management, Public Administration Academy of Republic of Armenia


Samvel Misakyan, Methodologist, Prof. of the Chair of Chess & Sports, Armenian State Pedagogical University after Khachatur Abovyan


Rector of the university Prof. Ruben Mirzakhanyan presented a doctoral gown to the FIDE President who was awarded with the title of Doctor of the Armenian State Pedagogical University named after Kh. Abovyan.


Another remarkable event was the opening of the chess club in Yerevan


GM Levon Aronian cutting the ribbon

Conference official website www.iccs.chessacademy.am

World Junior Chess Championship 2014: Round 10

News FIDE -



Round 10

ANKIT RAJPARA DEFEATS NARAYANAN

The Chinese duo Lu Shanglei and Wei Yi emphatically exhibited rising Chess power by scoring convincing victories over Russians, Vladimir Fedoseev, the top seed in fray here and Mikhail Antipov in the 10th round of the LIC World Junior Chess Championship at Hotel Hyatt, Pune. These victories ensured that the Chinese maintained their joint leader status with 8 points each. Aravindh Chithambaram, Ankit Rajpara and Diptayan Ghosh along with 10 other foreigners are trailing in second place with 7 points each.

In the Girls section, top seed Aleksandra Goryachkina who had shot into sole lead, enhanced her lead with the shortest victory in this edition of the World junior defeating Sarasadat Khademalsharieh of Iran in just 10 moves. India’s strong contender for the title, Padmini Rout slipped back farther with a draw against Meri Arabidze of Georgia. Aleksandra has now tallied 8.5 points and Ann Chumpitaz of Peru is trailing a point behind in second position. Padmini Rout, Srija Seshadri along with five overseas players are bunched together in third place with 7 points each.

From the Indian angle, the day belonged to rising talented teenager Aravindh Chithambaram who showcased his defensive skills and perseverance in wriggling out of an inferior position against super GM Jorge Cori of Peru to split the point. S L Narayanan after making a GM norm yesterday ended on the losing side against Ankit Rajpara in an English game which lasted 44 moves.


Ankit Rajpara defeated S L Narayanan at the on going LIC World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

Playing against the Sicilian defence adopted by Cori, Aravindh castled on the queen-side and spent the early part of the game trying to repulse an attack on his King. Cori did not castle and spent his time and effort in enhancing his advantage. By the 45th turn a loss loomed large for Aravindh as his pieces were pushed back and they lacked co-ordination. However a blunder by Cori on the 45th turn in the form of a knight move had Aravindh immediately retaliating with a tactical stroke which earned him a pawn and better square for his pieces. The table turned to such an extent that Aravindh appeared better by the 67th turn but the players decided to call it a day on the 77th move by repeating their moves. An exhausted Arvind later confessed “ I am mentally unable to understand the hidden aspects in this position as the game was so complex but it was really bad for me in the middle-game.

Sarasadat appeared to lose way in the Opening stages of a Queen’s Gambit against Aleksandra on the 9th move itself. A move later, landing in an inferior position, the Iranian preferred to resign rather than continue in agony and almost rushed out of the tournament hall in tears.

Three more rounds are remaining in this 13 round gruelling event sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors.

Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Lu Shanglei (Chn)-8 bt Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)-7 ; Mikhail Antipov (Rus)-6.5 lost to Wei Yi (Chn)-8; Aravindh Chithambaram-7 drew Jorge Cori (Per)-7 ; Karen Grigoriya (Arm)-7 drew Bai Jinshi(Chn)-7; Diptayan Ghosh-7 drew Kamil Dragun (Pol)-7 ; Duda Jan-Krzysztof (Pol)-7 bt Paulo Bersamina (Phi)-6 ; Indjic Aleksander (Srb)-7 bt Sayantan Das-6 ; S L Narayanan-6 lost to Ankit Rajpara-7 ; Christopher Repka (Svk)-6.5 drew M Karthikeyan-6.5 : Prasanna Rao-6 lost to Irakali Beradze (Geo)-7 ; Vidit Santosh Gujrathi-6.5 bt Linus Johansson (Swe)-5.5.

Girls Section

Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri) - 7 lost to Aleksandra Goryachikina (Rus)-8.5; Zhai Mo (Chn)-7 drew Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-7 ; Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-7.5 bt Anna Iwanow (Pol)- 6.5; Meri Arabidze (Geo)-6.5 drew Padmini Rout-7; P V Nandhidhaa-6.5 drew Irina Petrukhina (Rus)-6.5 ; Ioana Gelip (Rou)-6 lost to Srija Seshadri-7; Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Vie)-6 drew Janelle Mae Frayna (Phi)-6 ; Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)- Varshini V ; Rucha Pujari Ivana Maria Furtado ; Maria Gevorgyan (Arm) Michelle Catherina ; Jodilyn Jan Fronda Madhurima Shekhar ; Pratyusha Bodda - 5 lost to Sarvinoz Kurbonboeva (Uzb)-6 ; Supreeta Potluri -6 bt Tea Gucci (Ita).


Round 9

GOOD DAY FOR INDIA - S L NARAYANAN EARNS GM NORM, P V NANDHIDHAA COMPLETES WIM TITLE REQUIREMENTS AND PADMINI ROUT BOUNCES BACK WITH A VICTORY

16-year-old S L Narayanan has easily been the pick of the Indian players in display at the World Junior Chess Championship in progress at Hotel Hyatt Pune. In the 9th round today Narayanan today held compatriot and fourth seed Vidit Santosh Gujrathi to a draw and earned his first GM norm. In the Girls section, 18-year-old P V Nandhidhaa defeated Pratyusha Bodda in a dramatic way to make her third WIM norm and complete the requirements for her WIM title. Incidentally Pratyusha also made her WIM norm.

“My IM title was confirmed last month and this is my first GM norm” said the shy and soft spoken Narayanan while Nandhidhaa was visibly excited and gushed “ I made my first two norms in 2011 and 2012 and then missed making my final norm on seven occasions. Today I was very lucky as my opponent blundered on the last move in a dead draw position.”

On the top board Aleksandra Goryachkina defeated Ann Chumpitaz of Peru to shoot into sole lead with 7.5 points. Sarasadat Khademalsharieh is trailing half a point behind while Padmini, Dari Pustovoitova, Zhai Mo, Ann Chumpitaz and Anna Iwanow are bunched together with 6.5 points. Daria Pustovoitova also earned a WIM norm.

In the Open section the top board encounter between the two Chinese players Wei Ye and Lu Shanglei ended in a draw while top seed Fedoseev scored a victory over overnight joint leader Karen Grigoryan. Wei, Lu and Fedoseev are jointly leading with 7 points each. Eight players including Diptayan Ghosh and Aravindha Chithambaram of India are trailing just half a point behind the leaders.

The encounter between Bai Jinshi and Mikhail Antipov was one of the first ones to end in a draw. Jinshi with this draw has earned a 9 round Swiss League GM norm.

If Mae FraynaJanelle hoped to shock her opponent Padmini Rout with her choice of the ‘Alekhine Defence’ (which very rarely makes an appearance these days) on the very first move, then it was an effort wasted. “ I had done my homework and realized she experiments with different Openings and to a certain extent I was expecting this Opening” smiled Padmini after shrugging off yesterday’s loss and bouncing back with a victory.

Padmini Rout won a pawn in a tactical skirmish on the 20th turn which also saw the exchange of queens. Thereafter a flurry of exchanges followed and it appeared that despite an extra pawn, Padmini would really have to toil for a victory. Mae however failed to play accurately and ended on the losing side after 45 moves. In a thrilling encounter between Anna Iwanow and Sarasadat Khademalsharieh in a Spanish Opening, Anna surprisingly sacrificed a bishop for a couple of pawns in the early stages of the Opening. Thereafter she tried to whip up a whirlwind attack even as both Kings stayed on their original squares without castling. Sarasadat’s Kingside pawns were totally shattered but her queen, rook and bishop pair then launched a counter-offensive to win the game after 25 moves. “ After the Opening inaccuracy, there was nothing much to do to win the game” said Sarasadat.

Four more rounds are remaining in this 13 round gruelling event sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors.

Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Wei Yi (Chn)-7 drew Lu Shanglei (Chn)-7 ; Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)- 7 bt GM Karen Grigoryan (Arm)-6.5; Jorge Cori (Per)-6.5 drew Diptayan Ghosh-6.5 ; Bai Jinshi (Chn)-6.5 drew Mikhail Antipov (Rus)-6.5 ; Grigoriy Oparin (Rus)-6 drew Prasanna Rao-6 ; Kamil Dragun (Pol)-6.5 bt N Srinath-5.5 ; Linus Johansson (Swe)-5.5 lost to Aravindh Chidhambaram-6.5 ; Aryan Tari (Nor)-5.5 lost to Paulo Bersamina-6.5 ; S L Narayanan-6 drew Vidit Santosh Gujrathi-6 ; Tadeas Kriebel (Cze)-6 bt Robin Van Kampen (Ned)-5 ; Anurag Mhamal-5 lost to Duda Jan-Krzysztof (Pol)-6; Ankit Rajpara-6 bt Ege Koksal (Tur)-5 ; M Karthikeyan-6 bt Rajdeep Sarkar-5; Ritviz Parab-5 lost to Quinten Ducarmon (Ned)-6

Girls Section

Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-6.5 lost to Aleksandra Goryachkina (Rus)-7.5; Anna Iwanow (Pol)-6.5 lost to Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri)-7 ; Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-6.5 bt Ioana Gelip (Rou)- 6 ; Mo Zhai (Chn)-6.5 bt Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)-5.5 ; Padmini Rout -6.5 bt Mae Frayna Janelle (Phi)-5.5; Tea Gueci (Ita)-5 lost to Meri Arabidze (Geo)-6 ; Michelle Catherina-5.5 drew Nguyen Thi Mai Hung-5.5 ; Srija Seshadri-6 bt Marina Brunello (Ita)-5 ; IrinaPetrukhina (Rus) Vlada Sviridova (Rus); Nandhidhaa P V -6 bt Pratyusha Bodda- 5 ; Ivana Maria Furtado-5.5 drew Madhurima Shekhar-5.5 ; Varshini V-5.5 drew Cyrielle MonPeurt (Fra)-5.5.

Official tournament website

Round 8

A DAY OF UPSETS AS INDIANS LOSE WAY ON TOP BOARDS

Anna Iwanow of Poland, Chumpitaz Ann of Peru and Goryachkina Aleksandra from Russia are jointly leading the 77 player event with 6.5 points each.

Padmini Rout’s unbeaten stint was spoiled by top seed Aleksandra Goryachkina of Russia much to the disappointment of the Indian camp in the 8th round of the LIC World Junior Girls Chess Championship which continued after a day’s rest at Hotel Hyatt, Pune. In the Girls section, Daria Pustovoitova lost to Anna Iwanow of Poland. Anna Iwanow of Poland, Chumpitaz Ann of Peru and Goryachkina Aleksandra from Russia are jointly leading the 77 player event with 6.5 points each. Sarasadat Khademalsharieh is trailing the leader by half a point while Padmini remains on 5.5 points.

In fact, collectively it was not a good outing for Indians playing on top boards as Ivana Maria Furtado also ended on the losing side against third seed Sarasadat Khademalsharieh. Rucha Pujari, Shweta Gole. Sakshi Chitalange and Pv Nandhidhaa all ended on the losing side.

In the Open section sole leader Jorge Cori was upset by Karen Grigoryan of Armenia while Lu Shanglei of China defeated higher rated Benjamin Bok of Netherland. S L Narayanan who had been going great guns ended on the losing side against third seed Wei Yi of China after maintaining a balance for most part of the game. Karen, Wei and Shanglei have emerged joint leaders with 6.5 points each. Cori, Vladimir Fedoseev, Mikhail Antipov, Diptayan Ghosh and Bai Jinshi are trailing just half a point behind the leaders. 


Wei Yi from China (Left) defeated India's Sunilduth Lyna Narayanan at the on-going LIC World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

Padmini mishandled the Stonewall variation of the Dutch Defence against Goryachkina and the Russians rooks, queen and knight were soon threatening a major offensive on the King-side, right from the early middle-game stages. Padmini’s queen and rook were virtually out of play stranded on the queenside and her castle was broken. A wrong central pawn push on the 25th turn by Padmini suddenly opened up the gates towards her King and Goryachkina crashed through to pocket the point after 34 moves. 


Goryachkina Aleksandra from Russia (Left) defeated India's Padmini Rout (Right) at the on-going LIC World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

Five more rounds are remaining in this 13 round gruelling event sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors.

Narayanan opted for the Caro-Kann Defence against Wei Yi and played solidly to keep the position even in the middle-game. After the transposition to the ending where each player had a knight and rook, a draw loomed large but Narayanan lost a couple of pawns on the way and ended on the losing side after 79 moves.

Vidit Gujrathi was one of the early finishers scoring a rapid 34 move victory over Matej Blazeka of Croatia.


Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Karen Grigoryan (Arm)-6.5 bt Jorge Cori (Per)-6 ; Wei Yi (Chn)-6.5 bt S L Narayanan-5.5 ; Lu Shanglei (Chn)-6.5 bt Benjamin Bok (Ned)-5; Quinten Ducarmon (Ned)-5 lost to Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)-6; Aravindh Chithambaram-5.5 drew Grigoriy Oparin (Rus)-5.5; Mikhail Antipov (Rus)-6 bt Anurag Mhamal-5; Diptayan Ghosh-6 bt Tadeas Kriebel (Cze)-5; Ulvi Bajarani (Aze)-5 lost to Bai Jinshi (Chn)-6; Aleksander Indjic (Srb)-5 drew Linus Johanson (Swe)-5.5 ; VladislavKovalev (Blr)-5 drew Ben Artzi Ido (Isr)-5; Shardul Gagare-4.5 lost to Kamil Dragun (Pol)-5.5; Balazs Csonka (Hun)-5 drew Ankit Rajpara-5; Prasanna Raghuraman -5.5 bt Prince Bajaj-4.5 ; Rajdeep Sarkar-5 drew Sayantan Das-5; N Niranjan-4.5 lost to N Srinath-5.5; Vidit Santosh Gujrathi -5 bt Matej Blazeka (Cro)-4.

Girls Section

Aleksandra Goryachkina (Rus)-6.5 bt Padmini Rout-5.5 ; Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-5.5 lost to Anna Iwanow (Pol)-6.5; Marina Brunello (Ita)-5 lost to Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-6.5; Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri)- 6 bt Ivana Maria Furtado-5 ; Ioana Gelip (Rou)-6 bt P V Nandhidhaa-6 ; Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Vie)-5 drew Srija Seshadri-5 ; Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)-5.5 bt Rucha Pujari-4.5 ; Irina Petrukhina (Rus) Varshini V; Mae Frayna Janelle (Phi)-5.5 bt ShwetaGole-4.5; Meri Arabidze (Geo)-5 bt Sakshi Chitlange-5 ; Pratyusha Bodda-5 bt Mila Zarkovic (Cro)-4


Round 7: ANURAG MHAMAL SHOCKS SECOND SEED ROBIN VAN KAMPEN

In the most sensational result of the day Goa based Anurag Mhamal defeated second seed Robin Van Kampen of Netherland in the dying stages of the game. Battling in a minus position against the Sicilian defence, Anurag was delighted when Kampen in severe time trouble blundered and resigned on the 47th move when his bishop got trapped.


He is not a GM yet, nor does his Rating reflect his strength but S L Narayanan hailing from Kerala has undoubtedly been the most impressive Indian face in the LIC World Junior Chess Championship which has reached the halfway stage at Hotel Hyatt, Pune. In the seventh round Narayanan (2420) drew against GM Lu Shanglei (2533) of China and has logged highest points amongst the Indians in fray.

However Jorge Cori of Peru shot into sole lead with 6 points after defeating Mikhail Antipov of Russia while Lu, Narayanan, Wei Yi of China and Karen Grigoryan of Armenia are trailing in second place with 5.5 points each. In the Girls section Padmini Rout, Aleksandra Goryachkina and Daria Pustovoitova of Russia, Ann Chumpitaz of Peru and Anna Iwanow of Poland are jointly leading with 5.5 points each.

In the Girls section, the tough contest between overnight joint leaders Padmini and Daria of Russia ended with the honours shared after a hard fought 68 moves where Padmini was always on the troubled, defending side.’ It was a very tough game to defend and a mistake by my opponent helped in salvaging a draw” said Padmini.

Top seed and defending Champion Aleksandra Goryachkina defeated compatriot Mae Frayna Janelle to total 5.5 points. Ivana Maria Furtado of India defeated Monisha Gk and has scored 5 points.

The 13 round gruelling event is sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors. It was a setback as Sahaj Grover ended on the losing side against higher rated Karen Grigoryan of Armenia. Monday is a rest day for the event and the 8th round will be played on Tuesday.

The Queen’s Gambit Opening between Narayanan and Lu was a rather sedate affair where the Chinese did not waste any opportunity in exchanging pieces. By the 20th turn the game had already transposed into an ending with a light squared bishop, a rook and six pawns each. Thereafter it was an interesting duel in the ending where both players exhibited ambition of trying to probe for a win. However with both playing solidly, slowly the pawns and pieces were exchanged and a draw sealed on the 53rd move with just the Kings standing on board. Vidit Santosh Gujrathi, the highest rated player in fray had to settle for another draw against Irakli Beradze of Georgia and with just 4 points in his kitty needs to score heavily in the remaining rounds to be in contention for a medal.


India's Narayanan Sunilduth Lyna making a move aginst Lu Shanglei from China. The game ended in a draw.


Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Jorge Cori (Per)-6 Bt Mikhail Antiipov (Rus)-5; S L Narayanan-5.5 Lu Shanglei (Chn)-5.5; Grigoriy Oparin (Rus)-5 drew Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)-5; Aryan Tari (Nor)-4.5 lost to Wei Yi (Chn)-5.5; Benjamin Bok (Ned)-5 bt Ulvi Bajarani (Aze)-5 ; Sahaj Grover-4.5 lost to Karen Grigoryan (Arm)-5.5; Vladislav Kovalev (Blr)-4.5 drew Bai Jinshi (Chn)-4.5; Anurag Mhamal-5 bt Robin Van Kampen (Ned)-4; Tadeas Kriebel (Cze)-5 bt Duda Jan Krzysztof (Pol)-4 ; Harsha Bharathkoti-4 lost to Diptayan Ghosh-5 ; Aravindh Chithambaram ​- 5 ​Ufuk Arat (Tur)

Girls Section

Padmini Rout-5.5 drew Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-5.5; Aleksandra Goryachkina (Rus)-5.5 bt Mae Frayna Janelle (Rus)-4.5; Nandhshaa Pv-5 drew Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri)-5; Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-5.5 bt Mo Zhai (Chn)-4.5; Anna Iwanow-5.5 bt (Pol) Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)-4.5; Rucha Pujari-4.5 drew Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Vie)-4.5; Marina Brunello (Ita)-5 bt Pratyusha Bodda-4; Srija SeshadriIrina-4.5 drew Petrukhina (Rus)-4.5; Maria Ivana Furtado-5 bt Monisha Gk-5.


Official tournament website



ROUND 1: VIDIT OFF TO A FLYING START

Vidit Santosh Gujrathi got off to a flying start by quickly winning the first round of the World Junior Chess Championship which commenced at Hotel Hyatt, Pune today. The long 13-round gruelling event sponsored by LIC kicked off with 137 players from 50 countries and 78 participants in the Girls Category. The co-sponsors for this event are Amanora, Everstone, Jain Irrigation, ONGC with a substantial financial assistance from Government of Maharashtra. Second seed Robin Van Kampen also quickly won his game against Jan Rindlisbacher of Switzerland with Black pieces in 28 moves after adopting the Sicilian Defence.

FM Rakesh Kumar Jena rated 2164 created a flutter when he held higher rated and 10th seed GM Grigoryan of Russia to a draw after 30 moves of a Sicilian Defence. Vidit the fourth seed was pitted against compatriot Ritviz Parab rated 71st with the Black pieces and opted for a super sharp – Sicilian defence against the King Pawn Opening. “I had decided to play aggressively and am happy that my gamble played off as I managed to get an advantageous position early on” beamed Vidit after the game. A tentative and timid pawn push in the centre on the 15th turn by Ritviz had Vidit immediately pushing his pawn more boldly in the centre to get advantage. Another wrong queen move on the next turn had Vidit smelling victory and his queen, rook and knight soon swung into action to decide the game in his favour after 23 moves.

Iranian player FM Amir Kousarania (2331) missed his flight and hence was not paired in the first round. He will begin his campaign from the second round.

In the Girls section WIM Zhao Mo of China defeated WFM San Diego Marie Antoinette.


Indian top seeded Vidit Gujrathi planning a move at the on-going World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune


Fedoseev Vladimir, the top seeded player from Russia  at the on-going World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune


Aleksandra Goryachkina from Russia, top ranking player in the girls category at the on-going World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

Official tournament website

At a glittering ceremony at Hotel Hyatt, attended by eminent dignitaries from the sporting, entertainment and corporate world, the World Junior Chess Championship (WJCC) 2014 was declared open in Pune. Mr S K Roy, Chairman, Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) inaugurated the event in the presence of Robert Zsifkovits - Official FIDE representative, Mr Ashok Jain, President, Maharashtra Chess Association (MCA), Mr Aniruddha Deshpande, Vice President, MCA and Chairman WJCC Organising Committee, Mr Jairaj Pathak, Former President, Maharashtra Chess Association. The tournament will be played from 6th October to 19th October and will be conducted in the Swiss League format, comprising of 13 rounds with one round scheduled each day.





















Vidit Gujrathi, Mr. Ashok Jain, President - MCA, Mr. Neeraj Agarwal, Executive Director - LIC of India, Justice Mahadevan, Mr. Aniruddha Deshpande, VP - MCA, Chairman - WJCC Organizing Committee, Mr. S. K Roy, Chairman - LIC of India, Bharat Singh Chauhan, CEO - AICF, Aleksandra Goryachkina, Mr. Jairaj Pathak, Former President MCA making the first move to mark the inauguration of World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

More than 135 players in the open category and over 75 girls from over 45 countries will battle it out for the coveted title of World Junior Champion and World Junior Girls Champion respectively and stake the sole qualifying slot in both sections for the forthcoming World Cup which is part of the World Championship Cycle. The winners would also take home cash prize of Rs 6,00,000 (Six Lakhs). As a special recognition, the best Indian performer in both the sections will be presented with the Pune Mayor’s trophy. Apart from the titles, there will be GM, IM, WGM and WIM norms at stake for players performing creditably to meet the technical requirements.

The Chief Guest of the function S K Roy, Chairman, LIC speaking on the occasion said, “I am thankful to Maharashtra Chess Association for inviting me to inaugurate this prestigious tournament. The game of chess has its origin in India and the country has produced many Champions who have won international accolades. I can see a future World Champion in each one of you and would like to wish every participant all the very best for this tournament. Life Insurance Corporation of India is proud to be associated with this championship and we would like to extend our wishes to the organizers of this tournament in making this event, a grand success.”

Mr Ashok Jain, said, “It is indeed a moment of great pride for me and my entire team to organize this Championship for the first time in Maharashtra. MCA has been carrying out various initiatives for the development of the game of chess in the State. We have initiated the novel Maharashtra Chess League (MCL), the first Chess League in the country which has been a big hit in both its editions. MCA has also introduced the ‘Chess In Schools’ (CIS), another initiative to introduce chess at the grass roots. Currently there are 186 schools with about 9500 students enrolled in the programme and the target is to reach out to 500 schools and about 50,000 students in the next couple of years. I am sure that these initiatives will go a long way in creating more and more awareness for the game of chess in the State and the country and assist in producing many more Champions. I wish you all luck and encourage you to play good quality and competitive chess.”

Addressing the gathering, Mr Aniruddha Deshpande, said, “I welcome all the dignitaries, officials, coaches and players to the city of Pune. Apart from academics, Pune has also become an important centre for major sporting activities in India and chess has a rich tradition and culture in our city. The city has produced many a champions and I am sure that this championship will provide an ideal platform for our players to interact and get exposed to global talent. I would like to thank the Government of Maharashtra and all our sponsors for their support to this tournament. Our entire team is highly elated and charged up at organizing this grand championship and would like to assure you that we will leave no stone unturned in making this championship truly memorable and a grand success.”

The WJCC-2014 is being jointly organized by the MCA and Pune District Chess Circle (PDCC) under the auspices of AICF (All India Chess Federation) and FIDE (Federation Internationale des Echecs, World Chess Federation). The organizing committee of WJCC-2014 comprises prominent chess players and key personalities of various Chess Associations namely Ashok Jain, Ravindra Dongre, Zone President of World Chess Federation (FIDE) and, Treasurer, AICF and, Chairman of MCA, Siddharth Mayur, Vice President of the PDCC, Niranjan Godbole, Secretary of PDCC, Chess Grand Master Abhijt Kunte, Prakash Kunte and Moreshwar Bhagwat.

World Junior Chess Championship 2014: Round 9

News FIDE -



Round 9

GOOD DAY FOR INDIA - S L NARAYANAN EARNS GM NORM, P V NANDHIDHAA COMPLETES WIM TITLE REQUIREMENTS AND PADMINI ROUT BOUNCES BACK WITH A VICTORY

16-year-old S L Narayanan has easily been the pick of the Indian players in display at the World Junior Chess Championship in progress at Hotel Hyatt Pune. In the 9th round today Narayanan today held compatriot and fourth seed Vidit Santosh Gujrathi to a draw and earned his first GM norm. In the Girls section, 18-year-old P V Nandhidhaa defeated Pratyusha Bodda in a dramatic way to make her third WIM norm and complete the requirements for her WIM title. Incidentally Pratyusha also made her WIM norm.

“My IM title was confirmed last month and this is my first GM norm” said the shy and soft spoken Narayanan while Nandhidhaa was visibly excited and gushed “ I made my first two norms in 2011 and 2012 and then missed making my final norm on seven occasions. Today I was very lucky as my opponent blundered on the last move in a dead draw position.”

On the top board Aleksandra Goryachkina defeated Ann Chumpitaz of Peru to shoot into sole lead with 7.5 points. Sarasadat Khademalsharieh is trailing half a point behind while Padmini, Dari Pustovoitova, Zhai Mo, Ann Chumpitaz and Anna Iwanow are bunched together with 6.5 points. Daria Pustovoitova also earned a WIM norm.

In the Open section the top board encounter between the two Chinese players Wei Ye and Lu Shanglei ended in a draw while top seed Fedoseev scored a victory over overnight joint leader Karen Grigoryan. Wei, Lu and Fedoseev are jointly leading with 7 points each. Eight players including Diptayan Ghosh and Aravindha Chithambaram of India are trailing just half a point behind the leaders.

The encounter between Bai Jinshi and Mikhail Antipov was one of the first ones to end in a draw. Jinshi with this draw has earned a 9 round Swiss League GM norm.

If Mae FraynaJanelle hoped to shock her opponent Padmini Rout with her choice of the ‘Alekhine Defence’ (which very rarely makes an appearance these days) on the very first move, then it was an effort wasted. “ I had done my homework and realized she experiments with different Openings and to a certain extent I was expecting this Opening” smiled Padmini after shrugging off yesterday’s loss and bouncing back with a victory.

Padmini Rout won a pawn in a tactical skirmish on the 20th turn which also saw the exchange of queens. Thereafter a flurry of exchanges followed and it appeared that despite an extra pawn, Padmini would really have to toil for a victory. Mae however failed to play accurately and ended on the losing side after 45 moves. In a thrilling encounter between Anna Iwanow and Sarasadat Khademalsharieh in a Spanish Opening, Anna surprisingly sacrificed a bishop for a couple of pawns in the early stages of the Opening. Thereafter she tried to whip up a whirlwind attack even as both Kings stayed on their original squares without castling. Sarasadat’s Kingside pawns were totally shattered but her queen, rook and bishop pair then launched a counter-offensive to win the game after 25 moves. “ After the Opening inaccuracy, there was nothing much to do to win the game” said Sarasadat.

Four more rounds are remaining in this 13 round gruelling event sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors.

Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Wei Yi (Chn)-7 drew Lu Shanglei (Chn)-7 ; Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)- 7 bt GM Karen Grigoryan (Arm)-6.5; Jorge Cori (Per)-6.5 drew Diptayan Ghosh-6.5 ; Bai Jinshi (Chn)-6.5 drew Mikhail Antipov (Rus)-6.5 ; Grigoriy Oparin (Rus)-6 drew Prasanna Rao-6 ; Kamil Dragun (Pol)-6.5 bt N Srinath-5.5 ; Linus Johansson (Swe)-5.5 lost to Aravindh Chidhambaram-6.5 ; Aryan Tari (Nor)-5.5 lost to Paulo Bersamina-6.5 ; S L Narayanan-6 drew Vidit Santosh Gujrathi-6 ; Tadeas Kriebel (Cze)-6 bt Robin Van Kampen (Ned)-5 ; Anurag Mhamal-5 lost to Duda Jan-Krzysztof (Pol)-6; Ankit Rajpara-6 bt Ege Koksal (Tur)-5 ; M Karthikeyan-6 bt Rajdeep Sarkar-5; Ritviz Parab-5 lost to Quinten Ducarmon (Ned)-6

Girls Section

Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-6.5 lost to Aleksandra Goryachkina (Rus)-7.5; Anna Iwanow (Pol)-6.5 lost to Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri)-7 ; Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-6.5 bt Ioana Gelip (Rou)- 6 ; Mo Zhai (Chn)-6.5 bt Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)-5.5 ; Padmini Rout -6.5 bt Mae Frayna Janelle (Phi)-5.5; Tea Gueci (Ita)-5 lost to Meri Arabidze (Geo)-6 ; Michelle Catherina-5.5 drew Nguyen Thi Mai Hung-5.5 ; Srija Seshadri-6 bt Marina Brunello (Ita)-5 ; IrinaPetrukhina (Rus) Vlada Sviridova (Rus); Nandhidhaa P V -6 bt Pratyusha Bodda- 5 ; Ivana Maria Furtado-5.5 drew Madhurima Shekhar-5.5 ; Varshini V-5.5 drew Cyrielle MonPeurt (Fra)-5.5.

Official tournament website

Round 8

A DAY OF UPSETS AS INDIANS LOSE WAY ON TOP BOARDS

Anna Iwanow of Poland, Chumpitaz Ann of Peru and Goryachkina Aleksandra from Russia are jointly leading the 77 player event with 6.5 points each.

Padmini Rout’s unbeaten stint was spoiled by top seed Aleksandra Goryachkina of Russia much to the disappointment of the Indian camp in the 8th round of the LIC World Junior Girls Chess Championship which continued after a day’s rest at Hotel Hyatt, Pune. In the Girls section, Daria Pustovoitova lost to Anna Iwanow of Poland. Anna Iwanow of Poland, Chumpitaz Ann of Peru and Goryachkina Aleksandra from Russia are jointly leading the 77 player event with 6.5 points each. Sarasadat Khademalsharieh is trailing the leader by half a point while Padmini remains on 5.5 points.

In fact, collectively it was not a good outing for Indians playing on top boards as Ivana Maria Furtado also ended on the losing side against third seed Sarasadat Khademalsharieh. Rucha Pujari, Shweta Gole. Sakshi Chitalange and Pv Nandhidhaa all ended on the losing side.

In the Open section sole leader Jorge Cori was upset by Karen Grigoryan of Armenia while Lu Shanglei of China defeated higher rated Benjamin Bok of Netherland. S L Narayanan who had been going great guns ended on the losing side against third seed Wei Yi of China after maintaining a balance for most part of the game. Karen, Wei and Shanglei have emerged joint leaders with 6.5 points each. Cori, Vladimir Fedoseev, Mikhail Antipov, Diptayan Ghosh and Bai Jinshi are trailing just half a point behind the leaders. 


Wei Yi from China (Left) defeated India's Sunilduth Lyna Narayanan at the on-going LIC World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

Padmini mishandled the Stonewall variation of the Dutch Defence against Goryachkina and the Russians rooks, queen and knight were soon threatening a major offensive on the King-side, right from the early middle-game stages. Padmini’s queen and rook were virtually out of play stranded on the queenside and her castle was broken. A wrong central pawn push on the 25th turn by Padmini suddenly opened up the gates towards her King and Goryachkina crashed through to pocket the point after 34 moves. 


Goryachkina Aleksandra from Russia (Left) defeated India's Padmini Rout (Right) at the on-going LIC World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

Five more rounds are remaining in this 13 round gruelling event sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors.

Narayanan opted for the Caro-Kann Defence against Wei Yi and played solidly to keep the position even in the middle-game. After the transposition to the ending where each player had a knight and rook, a draw loomed large but Narayanan lost a couple of pawns on the way and ended on the losing side after 79 moves.

Vidit Gujrathi was one of the early finishers scoring a rapid 34 move victory over Matej Blazeka of Croatia.


Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Karen Grigoryan (Arm)-6.5 bt Jorge Cori (Per)-6 ; Wei Yi (Chn)-6.5 bt S L Narayanan-5.5 ; Lu Shanglei (Chn)-6.5 bt Benjamin Bok (Ned)-5; Quinten Ducarmon (Ned)-5 lost to Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)-6; Aravindh Chithambaram-5.5 drew Grigoriy Oparin (Rus)-5.5; Mikhail Antipov (Rus)-6 bt Anurag Mhamal-5; Diptayan Ghosh-6 bt Tadeas Kriebel (Cze)-5; Ulvi Bajarani (Aze)-5 lost to Bai Jinshi (Chn)-6; Aleksander Indjic (Srb)-5 drew Linus Johanson (Swe)-5.5 ; VladislavKovalev (Blr)-5 drew Ben Artzi Ido (Isr)-5; Shardul Gagare-4.5 lost to Kamil Dragun (Pol)-5.5; Balazs Csonka (Hun)-5 drew Ankit Rajpara-5; Prasanna Raghuraman -5.5 bt Prince Bajaj-4.5 ; Rajdeep Sarkar-5 drew Sayantan Das-5; N Niranjan-4.5 lost to N Srinath-5.5; Vidit Santosh Gujrathi -5 bt Matej Blazeka (Cro)-4.

Girls Section

Aleksandra Goryachkina (Rus)-6.5 bt Padmini Rout-5.5 ; Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-5.5 lost to Anna Iwanow (Pol)-6.5; Marina Brunello (Ita)-5 lost to Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-6.5; Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri)- 6 bt Ivana Maria Furtado-5 ; Ioana Gelip (Rou)-6 bt P V Nandhidhaa-6 ; Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Vie)-5 drew Srija Seshadri-5 ; Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)-5.5 bt Rucha Pujari-4.5 ; Irina Petrukhina (Rus) Varshini V; Mae Frayna Janelle (Phi)-5.5 bt ShwetaGole-4.5; Meri Arabidze (Geo)-5 bt Sakshi Chitlange-5 ; Pratyusha Bodda-5 bt Mila Zarkovic (Cro)-4


Round 7: ANURAG MHAMAL SHOCKS SECOND SEED ROBIN VAN KAMPEN

In the most sensational result of the day Goa based Anurag Mhamal defeated second seed Robin Van Kampen of Netherland in the dying stages of the game. Battling in a minus position against the Sicilian defence, Anurag was delighted when Kampen in severe time trouble blundered and resigned on the 47th move when his bishop got trapped.


He is not a GM yet, nor does his Rating reflect his strength but S L Narayanan hailing from Kerala has undoubtedly been the most impressive Indian face in the LIC World Junior Chess Championship which has reached the halfway stage at Hotel Hyatt, Pune. In the seventh round Narayanan (2420) drew against GM Lu Shanglei (2533) of China and has logged highest points amongst the Indians in fray.

However Jorge Cori of Peru shot into sole lead with 6 points after defeating Mikhail Antipov of Russia while Lu, Narayanan, Wei Yi of China and Karen Grigoryan of Armenia are trailing in second place with 5.5 points each. In the Girls section Padmini Rout, Aleksandra Goryachkina and Daria Pustovoitova of Russia, Ann Chumpitaz of Peru and Anna Iwanow of Poland are jointly leading with 5.5 points each.

In the Girls section, the tough contest between overnight joint leaders Padmini and Daria of Russia ended with the honours shared after a hard fought 68 moves where Padmini was always on the troubled, defending side.’ It was a very tough game to defend and a mistake by my opponent helped in salvaging a draw” said Padmini.

Top seed and defending Champion Aleksandra Goryachkina defeated compatriot Mae Frayna Janelle to total 5.5 points. Ivana Maria Furtado of India defeated Monisha Gk and has scored 5 points.

The 13 round gruelling event is sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors. It was a setback as Sahaj Grover ended on the losing side against higher rated Karen Grigoryan of Armenia. Monday is a rest day for the event and the 8th round will be played on Tuesday.

The Queen’s Gambit Opening between Narayanan and Lu was a rather sedate affair where the Chinese did not waste any opportunity in exchanging pieces. By the 20th turn the game had already transposed into an ending with a light squared bishop, a rook and six pawns each. Thereafter it was an interesting duel in the ending where both players exhibited ambition of trying to probe for a win. However with both playing solidly, slowly the pawns and pieces were exchanged and a draw sealed on the 53rd move with just the Kings standing on board. Vidit Santosh Gujrathi, the highest rated player in fray had to settle for another draw against Irakli Beradze of Georgia and with just 4 points in his kitty needs to score heavily in the remaining rounds to be in contention for a medal.


India's Narayanan Sunilduth Lyna making a move aginst Lu Shanglei from China. The game ended in a draw.


Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Jorge Cori (Per)-6 Bt Mikhail Antiipov (Rus)-5; S L Narayanan-5.5 Lu Shanglei (Chn)-5.5; Grigoriy Oparin (Rus)-5 drew Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)-5; Aryan Tari (Nor)-4.5 lost to Wei Yi (Chn)-5.5; Benjamin Bok (Ned)-5 bt Ulvi Bajarani (Aze)-5 ; Sahaj Grover-4.5 lost to Karen Grigoryan (Arm)-5.5; Vladislav Kovalev (Blr)-4.5 drew Bai Jinshi (Chn)-4.5; Anurag Mhamal-5 bt Robin Van Kampen (Ned)-4; Tadeas Kriebel (Cze)-5 bt Duda Jan Krzysztof (Pol)-4 ; Harsha Bharathkoti-4 lost to Diptayan Ghosh-5 ; Aravindh Chithambaram ​- 5 ​Ufuk Arat (Tur)

Girls Section

Padmini Rout-5.5 drew Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-5.5; Aleksandra Goryachkina (Rus)-5.5 bt Mae Frayna Janelle (Rus)-4.5; Nandhshaa Pv-5 drew Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri)-5; Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-5.5 bt Mo Zhai (Chn)-4.5; Anna Iwanow-5.5 bt (Pol) Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)-4.5; Rucha Pujari-4.5 drew Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Vie)-4.5; Marina Brunello (Ita)-5 bt Pratyusha Bodda-4; Srija SeshadriIrina-4.5 drew Petrukhina (Rus)-4.5; Maria Ivana Furtado-5 bt Monisha Gk-5.


Official tournament website



ROUND 1: VIDIT OFF TO A FLYING START

Vidit Santosh Gujrathi got off to a flying start by quickly winning the first round of the World Junior Chess Championship which commenced at Hotel Hyatt, Pune today. The long 13-round gruelling event sponsored by LIC kicked off with 137 players from 50 countries and 78 participants in the Girls Category. The co-sponsors for this event are Amanora, Everstone, Jain Irrigation, ONGC with a substantial financial assistance from Government of Maharashtra. Second seed Robin Van Kampen also quickly won his game against Jan Rindlisbacher of Switzerland with Black pieces in 28 moves after adopting the Sicilian Defence.

FM Rakesh Kumar Jena rated 2164 created a flutter when he held higher rated and 10th seed GM Grigoryan of Russia to a draw after 30 moves of a Sicilian Defence. Vidit the fourth seed was pitted against compatriot Ritviz Parab rated 71st with the Black pieces and opted for a super sharp – Sicilian defence against the King Pawn Opening. “I had decided to play aggressively and am happy that my gamble played off as I managed to get an advantageous position early on” beamed Vidit after the game. A tentative and timid pawn push in the centre on the 15th turn by Ritviz had Vidit immediately pushing his pawn more boldly in the centre to get advantage. Another wrong queen move on the next turn had Vidit smelling victory and his queen, rook and knight soon swung into action to decide the game in his favour after 23 moves.

Iranian player FM Amir Kousarania (2331) missed his flight and hence was not paired in the first round. He will begin his campaign from the second round.

In the Girls section WIM Zhao Mo of China defeated WFM San Diego Marie Antoinette.


Indian top seeded Vidit Gujrathi planning a move at the on-going World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune


Fedoseev Vladimir, the top seeded player from Russia  at the on-going World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune


Aleksandra Goryachkina from Russia, top ranking player in the girls category at the on-going World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

Official tournament website

At a glittering ceremony at Hotel Hyatt, attended by eminent dignitaries from the sporting, entertainment and corporate world, the World Junior Chess Championship (WJCC) 2014 was declared open in Pune. Mr S K Roy, Chairman, Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) inaugurated the event in the presence of Robert Zsifkovits - Official FIDE representative, Mr Ashok Jain, President, Maharashtra Chess Association (MCA), Mr Aniruddha Deshpande, Vice President, MCA and Chairman WJCC Organising Committee, Mr Jairaj Pathak, Former President, Maharashtra Chess Association. The tournament will be played from 6th October to 19th October and will be conducted in the Swiss League format, comprising of 13 rounds with one round scheduled each day.





















Vidit Gujrathi, Mr. Ashok Jain, President - MCA, Mr. Neeraj Agarwal, Executive Director - LIC of India, Justice Mahadevan, Mr. Aniruddha Deshpande, VP - MCA, Chairman - WJCC Organizing Committee, Mr. S. K Roy, Chairman - LIC of India, Bharat Singh Chauhan, CEO - AICF, Aleksandra Goryachkina, Mr. Jairaj Pathak, Former President MCA making the first move to mark the inauguration of World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

More than 135 players in the open category and over 75 girls from over 45 countries will battle it out for the coveted title of World Junior Champion and World Junior Girls Champion respectively and stake the sole qualifying slot in both sections for the forthcoming World Cup which is part of the World Championship Cycle. The winners would also take home cash prize of Rs 6,00,000 (Six Lakhs). As a special recognition, the best Indian performer in both the sections will be presented with the Pune Mayor’s trophy. Apart from the titles, there will be GM, IM, WGM and WIM norms at stake for players performing creditably to meet the technical requirements.

The Chief Guest of the function S K Roy, Chairman, LIC speaking on the occasion said, “I am thankful to Maharashtra Chess Association for inviting me to inaugurate this prestigious tournament. The game of chess has its origin in India and the country has produced many Champions who have won international accolades. I can see a future World Champion in each one of you and would like to wish every participant all the very best for this tournament. Life Insurance Corporation of India is proud to be associated with this championship and we would like to extend our wishes to the organizers of this tournament in making this event, a grand success.”

Mr Ashok Jain, said, “It is indeed a moment of great pride for me and my entire team to organize this Championship for the first time in Maharashtra. MCA has been carrying out various initiatives for the development of the game of chess in the State. We have initiated the novel Maharashtra Chess League (MCL), the first Chess League in the country which has been a big hit in both its editions. MCA has also introduced the ‘Chess In Schools’ (CIS), another initiative to introduce chess at the grass roots. Currently there are 186 schools with about 9500 students enrolled in the programme and the target is to reach out to 500 schools and about 50,000 students in the next couple of years. I am sure that these initiatives will go a long way in creating more and more awareness for the game of chess in the State and the country and assist in producing many more Champions. I wish you all luck and encourage you to play good quality and competitive chess.”

Addressing the gathering, Mr Aniruddha Deshpande, said, “I welcome all the dignitaries, officials, coaches and players to the city of Pune. Apart from academics, Pune has also become an important centre for major sporting activities in India and chess has a rich tradition and culture in our city. The city has produced many a champions and I am sure that this championship will provide an ideal platform for our players to interact and get exposed to global talent. I would like to thank the Government of Maharashtra and all our sponsors for their support to this tournament. Our entire team is highly elated and charged up at organizing this grand championship and would like to assure you that we will leave no stone unturned in making this championship truly memorable and a grand success.”

The WJCC-2014 is being jointly organized by the MCA and Pune District Chess Circle (PDCC) under the auspices of AICF (All India Chess Federation) and FIDE (Federation Internationale des Echecs, World Chess Federation). The organizing committee of WJCC-2014 comprises prominent chess players and key personalities of various Chess Associations namely Ashok Jain, Ravindra Dongre, Zone President of World Chess Federation (FIDE) and, Treasurer, AICF and, Chairman of MCA, Siddharth Mayur, Vice President of the PDCC, Niranjan Godbole, Secretary of PDCC, Chess Grand Master Abhijt Kunte, Prakash Kunte and Moreshwar Bhagwat.

Grand Prix Announcement

News FIDE -




In accordance with the Grand Prix contractual terms, FIDE announces the change of the third leg of the Grand Prix series to Tbilisi, Republic of Georgia. The dates remain exactly the same as announced in FIDE Calendar.

The representative for the new host city is GM Baadur Jobava who replaces GM Ghaem Maghami with his complete playing schedule.

The table below highlights the participation of each player.

World Junior Chess Championship 2014: Round 8

News FIDE -


A DAY OF UPSETS AS INDIANS LOSE WAY ON TOP BOARDS

Anna Iwanow of Poland, Chumpitaz Ann of Peru and Goryachkina Aleksandra from Russia are jointly leading the 77 player event with 6.5 points each.

Padmini Rout’s unbeaten stint was spoiled by top seed Aleksandra Goryachkina of Russia much to the disappointment of the Indian camp in the 8th round of the LIC World Junior Girls Chess Championship which continued after a day’s rest at Hotel Hyatt, Pune. In the Girls section, Daria Pustovoitova lost to Anna Iwanow of Poland. Anna Iwanow of Poland, Chumpitaz Ann of Peru and Goryachkina Aleksandra from Russia are jointly leading the 77 player event with 6.5 points each. Sarasadat Khademalsharieh is trailing the leader by half a point while Padmini remains on 5.5 points.

In fact, collectively it was not a good outing for Indians playing on top boards as Ivana Maria Furtado also ended on the losing side against third seed Sarasadat Khademalsharieh. Rucha Pujari, Shweta Gole. Sakshi Chitalange and Pv Nandhidhaa all ended on the losing side.

In the Open section sole leader Jorge Cori was upset by Karen Grigoryan of Armenia while Lu Shanglei of China defeated higher rated Benjamin Bok of Netherland. S L Narayanan who had been going great guns ended on the losing side against third seed Wei Yi of China after maintaining a balance for most part of the game. Karen, Wei and Shanglei have emerged joint leaders with 6.5 points each. Cori, Vladimir Fedoseev, Mikhail Antipov, Diptayan Ghosh and Bai Jinshi are trailing just half a point behind the leaders. 


Wei Yi from China (Left) defeated India's Sunilduth Lyna Narayanan at the on-going LIC World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

Padmini mishandled the Stonewall variation of the Dutch Defence against Goryachkina and the Russians rooks, queen and knight were soon threatening a major offensive on the King-side, right from the early middle-game stages. Padmini’s queen and rook were virtually out of play stranded on the queenside and her castle was broken. A wrong central pawn push on the 25th turn by Padmini suddenly opened up the gates towards her King and Goryachkina crashed through to pocket the point after 34 moves. 


Goryachkina Aleksandra from Russia (Left) defeated India's Padmini Rout (Right) at the on-going LIC World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

Five more rounds are remaining in this 13 round gruelling event sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors.

Narayanan opted for the Caro-Kann Defence against Wei Yi and played solidly to keep the position even in the middle-game. After the transposition to the ending where each player had a knight and rook, a draw loomed large but Narayanan lost a couple of pawns on the way and ended on the losing side after 79 moves.

Vidit Gujrathi was one of the early finishers scoring a rapid 34 move victory over Matej Blazeka of Croatia.


Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Karen Grigoryan (Arm)-6.5 bt Jorge Cori (Per)-6 ; Wei Yi (Chn)-6.5 bt S L Narayanan-5.5 ; Lu Shanglei (Chn)-6.5 bt Benjamin Bok (Ned)-5; Quinten Ducarmon (Ned)-5 lost to Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)-6; Aravindh Chithambaram-5.5 drew Grigoriy Oparin (Rus)-5.5; Mikhail Antipov (Rus)-6 bt Anurag Mhamal-5; Diptayan Ghosh-6 bt Tadeas Kriebel (Cze)-5; Ulvi Bajarani (Aze)-5 lost to Bai Jinshi (Chn)-6; Aleksander Indjic (Srb)-5 drew Linus Johanson (Swe)-5.5 ; VladislavKovalev (Blr)-5 drew Ben Artzi Ido (Isr)-5; Shardul Gagare-4.5 lost to Kamil Dragun (Pol)-5.5; Balazs Csonka (Hun)-5 drew Ankit Rajpara-5; Prasanna Raghuraman -5.5 bt Prince Bajaj-4.5 ; Rajdeep Sarkar-5 drew Sayantan Das-5; N Niranjan-4.5 lost to N Srinath-5.5; Vidit Santosh Gujrathi -5 bt Matej Blazeka (Cro)-4.

Girls Section

Aleksandra Goryachkina (Rus)-6.5 bt Padmini Rout-5.5 ; Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-5.5 lost to Anna Iwanow (Pol)-6.5; Marina Brunello (Ita)-5 lost to Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-6.5; Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri)- 6 bt Ivana Maria Furtado-5 ; Ioana Gelip (Rou)-6 bt P V Nandhidhaa-6 ; Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Vie)-5 drew Srija Seshadri-5 ; Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)-5.5 bt Rucha Pujari-4.5 ; Irina Petrukhina (Rus) Varshini V; Mae Frayna Janelle (Phi)-5.5 bt ShwetaGole-4.5; Meri Arabidze (Geo)-5 bt Sakshi Chitlange-5 ; Pratyusha Bodda-5 bt Mila Zarkovic (Cro)-4


Round 7: ANURAG MHAMAL SHOCKS SECOND SEED ROBIN VAN KAMPEN

In the most sensational result of the day Goa based Anurag Mhamal defeated second seed Robin Van Kampen of Netherland in the dying stages of the game. Battling in a minus position against the Sicilian defence, Anurag was delighted when Kampen in severe time trouble blundered and resigned on the 47th move when his bishop got trapped.


He is not a GM yet, nor does his Rating reflect his strength but S L Narayanan hailing from Kerala has undoubtedly been the most impressive Indian face in the LIC World Junior Chess Championship which has reached the halfway stage at Hotel Hyatt, Pune. In the seventh round Narayanan (2420) drew against GM Lu Shanglei (2533) of China and has logged highest points amongst the Indians in fray.

However Jorge Cori of Peru shot into sole lead with 6 points after defeating Mikhail Antipov of Russia while Lu, Narayanan, Wei Yi of China and Karen Grigoryan of Armenia are trailing in second place with 5.5 points each. In the Girls section Padmini Rout, Aleksandra Goryachkina and Daria Pustovoitova of Russia, Ann Chumpitaz of Peru and Anna Iwanow of Poland are jointly leading with 5.5 points each.

In the Girls section, the tough contest between overnight joint leaders Padmini and Daria of Russia ended with the honours shared after a hard fought 68 moves where Padmini was always on the troubled, defending side.’ It was a very tough game to defend and a mistake by my opponent helped in salvaging a draw” said Padmini.

Top seed and defending Champion Aleksandra Goryachkina defeated compatriot Mae Frayna Janelle to total 5.5 points. Ivana Maria Furtado of India defeated Monisha Gk and has scored 5 points.

The 13 round gruelling event is sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors. It was a setback as Sahaj Grover ended on the losing side against higher rated Karen Grigoryan of Armenia. Monday is a rest day for the event and the 8th round will be played on Tuesday.

The Queen’s Gambit Opening between Narayanan and Lu was a rather sedate affair where the Chinese did not waste any opportunity in exchanging pieces. By the 20th turn the game had already transposed into an ending with a light squared bishop, a rook and six pawns each. Thereafter it was an interesting duel in the ending where both players exhibited ambition of trying to probe for a win. However with both playing solidly, slowly the pawns and pieces were exchanged and a draw sealed on the 53rd move with just the Kings standing on board. Vidit Santosh Gujrathi, the highest rated player in fray had to settle for another draw against Irakli Beradze of Georgia and with just 4 points in his kitty needs to score heavily in the remaining rounds to be in contention for a medal.


India's Narayanan Sunilduth Lyna making a move aginst Lu Shanglei from China. The game ended in a draw.


Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Jorge Cori (Per)-6 Bt Mikhail Antiipov (Rus)-5; S L Narayanan-5.5 Lu Shanglei (Chn)-5.5; Grigoriy Oparin (Rus)-5 drew Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)-5; Aryan Tari (Nor)-4.5 lost to Wei Yi (Chn)-5.5; Benjamin Bok (Ned)-5 bt Ulvi Bajarani (Aze)-5 ; Sahaj Grover-4.5 lost to Karen Grigoryan (Arm)-5.5; Vladislav Kovalev (Blr)-4.5 drew Bai Jinshi (Chn)-4.5; Anurag Mhamal-5 bt Robin Van Kampen (Ned)-4; Tadeas Kriebel (Cze)-5 bt Duda Jan Krzysztof (Pol)-4 ; Harsha Bharathkoti-4 lost to Diptayan Ghosh-5 ; Aravindh Chithambaram ​- 5 ​Ufuk Arat (Tur)

Girls Section

Padmini Rout-5.5 drew Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-5.5; Aleksandra Goryachkina (Rus)-5.5 bt Mae Frayna Janelle (Rus)-4.5; Nandhshaa Pv-5 drew Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri)-5; Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-5.5 bt Mo Zhai (Chn)-4.5; Anna Iwanow-5.5 bt (Pol) Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)-4.5; Rucha Pujari-4.5 drew Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Vie)-4.5; Marina Brunello (Ita)-5 bt Pratyusha Bodda-4; Srija SeshadriIrina-4.5 drew Petrukhina (Rus)-4.5; Maria Ivana Furtado-5 bt Monisha Gk-5.


Official tournament website



ROUND 1: VIDIT OFF TO A FLYING START

Vidit Santosh Gujrathi got off to a flying start by quickly winning the first round of the World Junior Chess Championship which commenced at Hotel Hyatt, Pune today. The long 13-round gruelling event sponsored by LIC kicked off with 137 players from 50 countries and 78 participants in the Girls Category. The co-sponsors for this event are Amanora, Everstone, Jain Irrigation, ONGC with a substantial financial assistance from Government of Maharashtra. Second seed Robin Van Kampen also quickly won his game against Jan Rindlisbacher of Switzerland with Black pieces in 28 moves after adopting the Sicilian Defence.

FM Rakesh Kumar Jena rated 2164 created a flutter when he held higher rated and 10th seed GM Grigoryan of Russia to a draw after 30 moves of a Sicilian Defence. Vidit the fourth seed was pitted against compatriot Ritviz Parab rated 71st with the Black pieces and opted for a super sharp – Sicilian defence against the King Pawn Opening. “I had decided to play aggressively and am happy that my gamble played off as I managed to get an advantageous position early on” beamed Vidit after the game. A tentative and timid pawn push in the centre on the 15th turn by Ritviz had Vidit immediately pushing his pawn more boldly in the centre to get advantage. Another wrong queen move on the next turn had Vidit smelling victory and his queen, rook and knight soon swung into action to decide the game in his favour after 23 moves.

Iranian player FM Amir Kousarania (2331) missed his flight and hence was not paired in the first round. He will begin his campaign from the second round.

In the Girls section WIM Zhao Mo of China defeated WFM San Diego Marie Antoinette.


Indian top seeded Vidit Gujrathi planning a move at the on-going World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune


Fedoseev Vladimir, the top seeded player from Russia  at the on-going World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune


Aleksandra Goryachkina from Russia, top ranking player in the girls category at the on-going World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

Official tournament website

At a glittering ceremony at Hotel Hyatt, attended by eminent dignitaries from the sporting, entertainment and corporate world, the World Junior Chess Championship (WJCC) 2014 was declared open in Pune. Mr S K Roy, Chairman, Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) inaugurated the event in the presence of Robert Zsifkovits - Official FIDE representative, Mr Ashok Jain, President, Maharashtra Chess Association (MCA), Mr Aniruddha Deshpande, Vice President, MCA and Chairman WJCC Organising Committee, Mr Jairaj Pathak, Former President, Maharashtra Chess Association. The tournament will be played from 6th October to 19th October and will be conducted in the Swiss League format, comprising of 13 rounds with one round scheduled each day.





















Vidit Gujrathi, Mr. Ashok Jain, President - MCA, Mr. Neeraj Agarwal, Executive Director - LIC of India, Justice Mahadevan, Mr. Aniruddha Deshpande, VP - MCA, Chairman - WJCC Organizing Committee, Mr. S. K Roy, Chairman - LIC of India, Bharat Singh Chauhan, CEO - AICF, Aleksandra Goryachkina, Mr. Jairaj Pathak, Former President MCA making the first move to mark the inauguration of World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

More than 135 players in the open category and over 75 girls from over 45 countries will battle it out for the coveted title of World Junior Champion and World Junior Girls Champion respectively and stake the sole qualifying slot in both sections for the forthcoming World Cup which is part of the World Championship Cycle. The winners would also take home cash prize of Rs 6,00,000 (Six Lakhs). As a special recognition, the best Indian performer in both the sections will be presented with the Pune Mayor’s trophy. Apart from the titles, there will be GM, IM, WGM and WIM norms at stake for players performing creditably to meet the technical requirements.

The Chief Guest of the function S K Roy, Chairman, LIC speaking on the occasion said, “I am thankful to Maharashtra Chess Association for inviting me to inaugurate this prestigious tournament. The game of chess has its origin in India and the country has produced many Champions who have won international accolades. I can see a future World Champion in each one of you and would like to wish every participant all the very best for this tournament. Life Insurance Corporation of India is proud to be associated with this championship and we would like to extend our wishes to the organizers of this tournament in making this event, a grand success.”

Mr Ashok Jain, said, “It is indeed a moment of great pride for me and my entire team to organize this Championship for the first time in Maharashtra. MCA has been carrying out various initiatives for the development of the game of chess in the State. We have initiated the novel Maharashtra Chess League (MCL), the first Chess League in the country which has been a big hit in both its editions. MCA has also introduced the ‘Chess In Schools’ (CIS), another initiative to introduce chess at the grass roots. Currently there are 186 schools with about 9500 students enrolled in the programme and the target is to reach out to 500 schools and about 50,000 students in the next couple of years. I am sure that these initiatives will go a long way in creating more and more awareness for the game of chess in the State and the country and assist in producing many more Champions. I wish you all luck and encourage you to play good quality and competitive chess.”

Addressing the gathering, Mr Aniruddha Deshpande, said, “I welcome all the dignitaries, officials, coaches and players to the city of Pune. Apart from academics, Pune has also become an important centre for major sporting activities in India and chess has a rich tradition and culture in our city. The city has produced many a champions and I am sure that this championship will provide an ideal platform for our players to interact and get exposed to global talent. I would like to thank the Government of Maharashtra and all our sponsors for their support to this tournament. Our entire team is highly elated and charged up at organizing this grand championship and would like to assure you that we will leave no stone unturned in making this championship truly memorable and a grand success.”

The WJCC-2014 is being jointly organized by the MCA and Pune District Chess Circle (PDCC) under the auspices of AICF (All India Chess Federation) and FIDE (Federation Internationale des Echecs, World Chess Federation). The organizing committee of WJCC-2014 comprises prominent chess players and key personalities of various Chess Associations namely Ashok Jain, Ravindra Dongre, Zone President of World Chess Federation (FIDE) and, Treasurer, AICF and, Chairman of MCA, Siddharth Mayur, Vice President of the PDCC, Niranjan Godbole, Secretary of PDCC, Chess Grand Master Abhijt Kunte, Prakash Kunte and Moreshwar Bhagwat.

Baku Grand Prix: Round 10

News FIDE -



Round 10: Caruana and Gelfand lead again, one round to go


Fabiano Caruana and Boris Gelfand moved into joint lead after defeating Leinier Dominguez and Teimour Radjabov, respectively, in the penultimate round of the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku.
After nine consecutive drawn Evgeny Tomashevsky played a first decisive game, winning against his compatriot Dmitry Andreikin.
Alexander Grischuk reiterated his return into good shape by crushing Rustam Kasimdzhanov with black.
The games Nakamura-Mamedyarov and Karjakin-Svidler were both drawn by perpetual check.

Results and pairings are here, crosstable is here. Visit also the photo gallery and replay the games.

Reminder - In case of a tie Grand Prix points and money prizes are split equally. Tie-break counts only for cups and medals, criteria are:

- Tie Break1: Direct Encounter (The results of the players in the same point group)
- Tie Break2: The greater number of victories
- Tie Break3: Sonneborn-Berger-Tie-Break variable

Artur Rasizade, Prime Minister of Azerbaijan, visited the playing venue and observed the games.





Nakamura - Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2

The Slav Exchange line is back in fashion, after the effort of many top rated Grandmasters, including Nakamura.
After the regular development of the pieces, black succeeded in anchoring the knight on c4. The doubled g-pawn was pushed as a battering ram against white castle.
White king was left on the open field but black couldn't find anything better than the perpetual check.



Dominguez - Caruana 0-1

The players arrived to this round haunted by the poor form in recent games. Dominguez had two consecutive losses, while Caruana lost in two of last three rounds.
A supposedly quiet English Opening didn't prevent Caruana from seeking an initiative at the early stage of the game.
Black traded his bishops, expanded in the center and broke white's queenside structure.
Opening the f-file proved to be a risky affair for white who suddenly fell under tremendous attack.
Caruana thereafter needed only a couple of energetic moves to force his opponent into resignation.



Karjakin - Svidler 1/2-1/2

The Ruy Lopez Anti-Marshall quickly turned into wild affair when white's 16.Ne3 allowed black to complicate the matters with 17...Nxg2.
Black sacrificed a piece for two pawns and strong attack. But even the top chess engines disagreed whether black has a decisive touch.
Svidler could not see through the forest of complicated variations and eventually took a draw by perpetual check.



Gelfand - Radjabov 1-0

In the Catalan Opening white employed a relatively rare plan of 13.Rd1 combined with the development of knight to d2. The idea was to clamp down on the c5-square.
Black didn't react accordingly and soon landed into big trouble. He tried to shake off white pressure by sacrificing a pawn, but to no avail, and soon even his knight got trapped.
Radjabov resigned on move 28.



Kasimdzhanov - Grischuk 0-1

Black employed an interesting transposition from the Semi-Slav Traingle into Stonewall Dutch with a knight on h6. This concept was examined in the theoretical works of GM Sherbakov.
Both players castled long but somehow black was more concrete in getting his kingside action going.
White simply couldn't find the right plan and after the strong 24...g3 black seized the initiative.
Kasimdzhanov tried to reduce the pressure by giving up an exchange, but Grischuk returned the favour for decisive break on the second rank. White resigned on 33rd move.



Tomashevsky - Andreikin 1-0


Andreikin defended with the Slav and Tomashevsky attempted to play the dangerous Krause Attack 6.Ne5.
Black responded with 6...Na6, favourite sideline of Torre, Miles and Kramnik.
White didn't mind losing a tempo to provoke the weakening 15...g5. Later he won the poor pawn and continued to harass the black king. Shortly before the time control black fell under heavy attack and lost three pawns. On move 41 he realised the position was hopeless and congratulated his compatriot.





Round 9: Six players lead after day full of excitement!

After the entertaining round 9 of FIDE Grand Prix in Baku and losses by Caruana and Gelfand, the tournament is wide open with only two games to go!
The round abounded with the decisive results despite two relatively quick draws in Radjabov-Karjakin and Svidler-Tomashevsky.
Next, Nakamura won a piece from Kasimdzhanov, while Mamedyarov defeated Gelfand.
More action followed when Caruana erred and allowed Grischuk to unleash the combined power of the queen and the knight.
Dominguez assumed the advantage after Andreikin's ungrounded piece sacrifice, but then the Cuban lost the thread and the game.
Two rounds before the end as many as six players are sharing the lead: Caruana, Nakamura, Karjakin, Gelfand, Radjabov and Svidler.

Results and pairings are here, crosstable is here. Visit also the photo gallery and replay the games.



Nakamura - Kasimdzhanov 1-0

Black attempted to play the Berlin Ruy Lopez but white avoided the famous queenless middlegame and preferred the structure similar to the Exchange Variation.
White succeeded in pushing d4 and black gave up the bishops' pair in order to trade the queens.
Black looked solid until Nakamura set a small trap with 22.Bg3 into which his opponent fell head in. With white trapping a piece on the back-rank, black immediately gave up.



Mamedyarov - Gelfand 1-0

White's restrained opening setup with 4.e3 was probably devised against Gelfand's favourite Gruenfeld Indian defence. The play soon transposed to the Benoni, where black appeared to have an extra tempo.
The light-squared bishops were exchanged and it looked like black will equalise with ease.
But after a couple of aimless moves by Gelfand white got some action going against the d6-pawn.
Black lost that pawn and was faced with new and stronger threats. Gelfand gave up on move 37.
Azerbaijan chess fans are absolutely delighted with Mamedyarov's first victory.



Svidler - Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2

Playing the white side of the Ruy Lopez Anti-Marshall, Svidler was not cautious enough and his 12.c3 allowed a strong reply in 12...c4.
Black snatched the pawn on a4, but instead of trying to fight for an advantage, he repeated the moves in the early stage of the game.
This was ninth consecutive draw for Tomashevsky.



Radjabov - Karjakin 1/2-1/2

 
The players explored the topical line of the English Opening where white has better pawn structure but black pieces are sufficiently active.
18.Rc2 practically invited black to liquidate the tension down to opposite-coloured bishops endgame. Draw signed on 30th move.



Caruana - Grischuk 0-1

Caruana repeated 3.f3 line against Gruenfeld Indian defence that brought him success earlier in the clash with Svidler.
But Grischuk was not intimidated, having prepared a highly original line that made his opponent think from the early stage of the game.
Black even sacrificed a pawn for the kind of counterplay that resembled Sveshnikov Sicilian or Benko Gambit.
At some point Caruana refused moves repetition and allowed black knight into play.
This double-edged act quickly turned against white when he erred which 32.Kg1. The knight started doing wonders and white position simply collapsed.
Grischuk duly converted the advantage on move 52.



Andreikin - Dominguez 1-0

Dominguez was ready to meet the Trompovsky Attack and acquired good position with black.
In order to reverse the negative trend Andreikin tried to unbalance the position with a knight sacrifice. Black was not impressed and slowly increased the advantage.
However, one careless move with a queen (32...Qd3) allowed white to get back in the game. That was only the first of several mistakes by black who ended up in worse ending being a pawn down.
Andreikin took the chance and finally delivered full point after 56 moves of play.



Round 8: Svidler defeats Dominguez, no changes on top

Peter Svidler defeated Leinier Dominguez while the other five games were drawn in the 8th round of the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku.

Fabiano Caruana and Boris Gelfand remain tied on the top with 5 points each and Svidler moved ahead to the shared third place.

Saturday 11th October is the second rest day.

Results and pairings are here, crosstable is here. Visit also the photo gallery and replay the games.



Kasimdzhanov - Caruana 1/2-1/2

Caruana defended with the Gruenfeld Indian and Kasimdzhanov countered with the Russian system. In a sharp but deeply explored a6-line the pieces were quickly going off in a forced variation.
In the resulting endgame white held a passed pawn within the queenside majority but this asset was firmly blocked by the black knight. White couldn't find anything better than repetition of moves.



Gelfand - Nakamura 1/2-1/2

Nakamura employed his trusted Dutch Leningrad defence. The early 12...b5 thrust allowed white a tactics with 14.Ne5, but he didn't follow through with the most complicated 15.Bb7.
Instead, the game move 15.Nd3 offered some prospects for a positional pressure. However, following the central break with 18.e4 and the long forced line the position simplified into a rook endgame. Black comfortably held the draw.
At the press conference Gelfand agreed that 15.Bb7 might have been a better try. He had hoped that the game continuation would grant him positional advantage but Nakamura found a great defending resource in 17...Rb8.



Karjakin - Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2

In the Meran Slav defence white achieved a minimal opening advantage after black was left with an isolated d5-pawn.
But in compensation all black pieces were actively placed and it was not easy to make progress.
With smart exchanges and patient positional build-up white got himself in position to increase the advantage.
However, with the terrible time trouble looming Karjakin decided to repeat the moves and take a draw. In the final position he was still better.



Tomashevsky - Radjabov 1/2-1/2

Evgeny Tomashevsky attempted to find an improvement for white over the game Parligras-Radjabov from the recent Chess Olympiad in Tromso.
He came up with 13.Neg5, hoping to, in his own words, "end the series of draws".
15.Nxf7 sacrifice and particularly the neat 19.c6 made white look good, but Radjabov's defence was marvelous and he forced the transition to opposite-coloured bishops ending that was immediately drawn.



Dominguez - Svidler 0-1

Dominguez's slow-paced Ruy Lopez with the two-step d4 inspired Svidler to come up with the new plan based on quick exchange on d4 and Bg4 pin.
White run into an early trouble after over-extending his pawn structure. The only hope to untangle was to give up a pawn and head for the double rook endgame.
It took some time to come up with the right plan, but Svidler masterfully converted the advantage into full point.



Grischuk - Andreikin 1/2-1/2

It was a regular Berlin Ruy Lopez where the queens are traded early on, followed by long maneuvering from both sides.
An endgame with rooks and opposite-coloured bishops was reached. Black gave up a pawn in order to simplify the structure.
White was trying to find a way to increase the advantage but the black pieces were well placed to cover the weaknesses and hold the advance of the passed f-pawn.
Grischuk finally conceded a draw on move 77.



Round 7: Caruana stopped, Gelfand joins in the lead


Fabiano Caruana's impressive run has been put to a halt in round 7 of the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku when he was defeated by the tail-ender Dmitry Andreikin. This was Caruana's first loss since the Chess Olympiad in Tromso.
Boris Gelfand joined the Italian on the shared first place with 4,5 points each after a draw against Rustam Kasimdzhanov.
Sergey Karjakin scored against Hikaru Nakamura, while the games Svidler - Grischuk, Mamedyarov - Tomashevsky and Radjabov - Dominguez were drawn.

Results and pairings are here, crosstable is here. Visit also the photo gallery and replay the games.



Svidler - Grischuk 1/2-1/2

In the Moscow Sicilian white retreated his bishop to d3, in a maneuver that became popular recently. Grischuk already faced this plan, in a blitz game last month against Karjakin, and was obviously well prepared.
11.e5 was novelty, but it allowed black to double white's f-pawns and anchor the knight on dominant central square.
White relied on a quick action against the black king, but black pieces were placed well and Svidler decided to take the perpetual check before it was too late.
After the game Gelfand approached Svidler and jokingly advised "you should develop all your pieces before embarking on such action".
Grischuk said he is currently reading "And Quiet Flows the Don", the 4-volume masterpiece of the Russian literature by Mikhail Sholokhov, adding that it is a very difficult book.



Mamedyarov - Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2

Against the Slav defence, Mamedyarov answered in "Catalan fashion", with 4.g3. He is not a stranger to this development, having already played it against Nakamura in Gashimov Memorial earlier this year.
Tomashevsky deviated from that game, seeking an early clarification in the center with 6...dxc4.
With the compromised pawn structures on the kingside, both players decided to castle long.
White tried to expand in the center and his three pawns were imposing, but at the same time fragile without the base support.
Black was in position to get something going with 30...Qb4, but he wanted to be safe and repeated the moves for a draw.



Radjabov - Dominguez 1/2-1/2

Another game with the topical 3.f3 against the Gruenfeld Indian defence. Dominguez challenged white's advantage in the center, while Radjabov responded by opening up the h-file.
Naturally, white castled long and tried to advance the passed d-pawn. Black was occupied with the opening of the powerful bishop's diagonal.
After the inferior 22.Nd5, black was able to transfer his rook to a4 and place the white king into danger. Radjabov then reacted properly and Dominguez could not find the decisive blow, instead settling for a draw with perpetual check.
Later at the press conference both players said that it was fun to play this game, with many exciting lines to be considered.



Nakamura - Karjakin 0-1

Nakamura, always enterprising in the opening, started the game with Veresov Attack. Karjakin, in his turn, played a novelty as early as on move 5...c4.
With the opposite castles on the board, black got better from the opening by snatching the stranded pawn on c5.
Nakamura tried to mount an attack against the enemy king, but to no avail, and black succeeded in trading the queens to reach better ending.
Karjakin's technique was impeccable and he delivered full point around the second time control.



Gelfand - Kasimdzhanov 1/2-1/2

It was a Queen's Gambit Declined where Gelfand performed his trademarked positional squeeze. White was always just slightly better and it was not easy for black to come up with counterplay.
Finally, Kasimdzhanov lost patience and traded down to the rook ending where white was still the more active side.
But black defended tenaciously and finally pulled a miraculous save to reach a theoretical draw in the rook vs pawn endgame.



Andreikin - Caruana 1-0

Caruana surprised his opponent and the entire internet audience by going for the Scandinavian defence.
White avoided the sharpest lines and preferred a positional build-up. In the transition between the opening and the middlegame something went wrong for black as he allowed his opponent to establish a passed pawn on d6.
Andreikin was inspired and never let the advantage go. He successfully reached an endgame with the extra pawn on the c-file.
Caruana fought valiantly but could not save the difficult position. He finally resigned on move 64.


Round 6: Fabiano Caruana surges ahead

Fabiano Caruana defeated Peter Svidler in the 6th round of FIDE Grand Prix in Baku to move into sole lead with 4,5 points. Yesterday's co-leader Boris Gelfand was held to a draw by Sergey Karjakin.
In the other decisive games Rustam Kasimdzhanov scored against Dmitry Andreikin, and the local chess fans are thrilled about Teimour Radjabov's first victory, against Alexander Grischuk.
Leinier Dominguez - Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Evgeny Tomashevsky - Hikaru Nakamura were drawn.

Results and pairings

Crosstable

Photo gallery


Replay the games



Caruana - Svidler 1-0

The clash between the two experts on Gruenfeld Indian defence saw a topical new line 3.f3 that come to prominence in the recent years.
The centralised black knight provoked white to get his central pawns rolling with 16.g4 and 17.f4. However, already the next move 18.e5 might have been a tad premature as black sacrificed the knight for three pawns and strong counterplay.
A sharp battle ensued, but black made a couple of inaccuracies that allowed the opponent to coordinate the forces and launch a fierce attack. With the trend definitely shifting into white's favour, Svidler resigned on move 33.



Kasimdzhanov - Andreikin 1-0

Andreikin employed the Philidor defence, but something went wrong in the early stages of the game as he was forced to weaken the queenside pawn structure.
After a series of neat positional maneuvers white was rewarded with a combination that won him an exchange and two pawns.
Black went all in trying to make something against the white king, but Kasimdzhanov duly refuted the attack and converted the advantage.



Grischuk - Radjabov 0-1

In the Fianchetto Gruenfeld Indian white had the pair of bishops but black easily equalised in a relatively closed position.
After 22...cxd5 black pawn structure was ultra-solid and it was not clear how either of the players could push for a win.
But Grischuk's hasty 25.f4, which irrevocably weakened the e3-pawn, coupled with the poor time management, definitely shifted the advantage to black side.
After the queens went off, white position was beyond salvation.



Tomashevsky - Nakamura 1/2-1/2

Another day with the Lasker Variation of the Queen's Gambit Declined, only this time Tomashevsky chose 9.Qc2 over Radjabov's 9.Rc1.
White attempted to slow down black's advance c7-c5, but Nakamura nevertheless pushed the pawn offering a temporary sacrifice.
As it happens so often in this opening, the queenside pawns were cleared off the table and heavy pieces got exchanged on the open files.
The resulting endgame offered no chances to play for a victory, but the players continued the game until moves were repeated around the first time control.



Dominguez - Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2


In the Closed Ruy Lopez black achieved a harmonic development and stood rather well. Doubling the white pawns on f3 on moves 18 or 19 deserved attention.
But Mamedyarov chose a different path and tried to undermine white's center.
On move 28 white avoided the trade of the queens, but probably missed that his Re1 is hanging in some lines. As a consequence, black was able to execute massive exchanges down to the equal rook endgame. Draw agreed on move 38.



Karjakin - Gelfand 1/2-1/2

It was a promising start - the Sicilian Naidorf with Fischer's 6.h3. But black avoided the sharp lines and preferred to force the exchange of the queens.
Gelfand enjoyed a slightly better pawn structure, but white knights dominated the central squares and there was no way through.
Draw was signed after the obligatory 30 moves when both players were already down to the last 5 minutes.



Round 5: All games drawn

Following the rest day, the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku continued with round 5 on Tuesday. In the longest game of the day Hikaru Namakura tried to convert the advantage of two pawns but Leinier Dominguez defended accurately and escaped with a tie.

With all games drawn, Boris Gelfand and Fabiano Caruana continue to lead the standings with 3.5 points each.

Results and pairings are here, crosstable is here.


See also the photo galleries




Mamedyarov - Grischuk 1/2-1/2

In one of the most interesting games of the day Grischuk defended with the Leningrad Dutch that soon turned into a wild affair with pieces hanging left and right.
Mamedyarov took the straightforward path of challenging the black structure with quick e2-e4. Black responded by snatching the c4-pawn.
White did have a strong compensation as black pieces were tied up, but a couple of "only-moves" helped Grischuk to survive the onslaught and trade the pieces down to an equal endgame.
Later Grischuk explained that he had analysed the position almost until the end. He was searching for winning attempts for white, but it turned out that black survives with precise sequence of moves.



Radjabov - Caruana 1/2-1/2

The top rated player of the tournament Fabiano Caruana defended with the Lasker variation of the Queen's Gambit Declined, which was famously featured in the decisive game of the Topalov-Anand World Championship Match in 2012.
In a typical fashion, white piled up his heavy pieces on the c-file to press black's exposed pawn structure.
But black had a simple solution to liquidate all the pawns on one side of the board. After the queens went off, it was obvious that the game will soon be drawn and the scoresheets were signed on move 34.



Svidler - Andreikin 1/2-1/2

After solving the problem with his laptop on the rest day, Peter Svidler faced a new challenge when Dmitry Andreikin opened with the French defence, which was a surprise for white.
Svidler never really posed any threats to his opponent, and after the exchange of the queens, it became clear that today Andreikin is having an easy ride.
Black castled long, doubled white's f-pawns and achieved certain activity. Before landing into inferior position, white decided to trade everything down to opposite-coloured bishops ending. Draw agreed on move 31.



Karjakin - Kasimdzhanov 1/2-1/2

Kasimdzhanov has been Karjakin's trainer for quite some time already and it was not easy for the young Russian to produce opening surprise. Eventually he went for Korchnoi's favourite 6.a3 in the English Opening.
Black responded with action in center and promptly conceded the bishops' pair in order to make a symmetrical pawn structure. 12...Ne4 marked the start of a nice maneuver which cleared the central files to black's favor.
Being in danger of simply ending up worse, white had to carefully navigate the waters around the anchored knight on d4.
Kasimdzhanov could not find a way to increase the advantage and finally retreated the knight to allow exchange of the queens. Draw was agreed after the obligatory 30th move.



Gelfand - Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2

This game saw a small bidding war in the opening - black angled for the Noteboom Semi-Slav, which white prevented by offering Meran Slav, until the pawn structure was finally shaped into Dutch Stonewall.
The small benefit for black was that with the pawn on e3 white dark-coloured bishop remained inside the pawn-chain.
After the regular developing moves, black pushed c6-c5 to challenge white's center. A couple of moves later he was the first to release the tension with dxc4.
White pressed on the backward e6-pawn and was able to win it, but black picked up solid counterplay in the process.
The resulting rook endgame was completely even and the players shook hands on move 31.



Nakamura - Dominguez 1/2-1/2

In response to Nakamura's English Opening the Cuban Grandmaster picked the reversed Botvinnik setup, but then immediately surprised the commentators with the slightly unusual 8...d5.
White answered with principled 12.b4 and was able to exert some pressure on the black position.
Black sacrificed a pawn in an attempt to clear the entire queenside, but then he realised that the planned 23...Ra1 is simply refuted with 24.Rxg7+.
23...Ra4 still looked to sufficient to win back the pawn, but Dominguez played 23...Bd4 instead. Nakamura replied with the strong 24.g4 which opened another battle-front to white's benefit.
Nakamura won the second pawn, but the timely 31...Re5 allowed black to create sufficient counterplay. Nakamura still tried to play for a win, but finally had to concede a draw before the second time control.


Round 4: Caruana joins Gelfand on top


In the only decisive game of the 4th round of FIDE Grand Prix in Baku, Italian star Fabiano Caruana defeated the local hero Shakhriyar Mamedyarov to catch the former world championship challenger Boris Gelfand on the shared first place.
The remaining five games were drawn. Gelfand and Caruana are on the top of the crosstable with 3 points each. Full standings here.



Caruana - Mamedyarov 1-0


The game started as a relatively quiet Slav Defence, but Mamedyarov didn't wait long to disturb the balance with the enterprising 8...g5.
GM Avrukh dubbed the move as "inferior" in his repertoire book, and it appears rightly so.
Black still had an option to stay solid and try to improve the pieces, but instead he started a premature attack with 14...g4. A cute maneuver Nc3-e2-f4 by white underlined the poor placement of the black pieces.
Mamedyarov went all in with an exchange sacrifice that gave him only temporary counterplay, but this was easily refuted by Caruana who sealed the victory on move 34.



Grischuk - Nakamura 1/2-1/2

Alexander Grischuk answered the King's Indian defence with Gligoric variation 8.Be3 and proceeded with the move "recommended by his friend" - 15.Rc1.
He was unhappy with the outcome of the opening as he ended in terribly passive position with the bishop locked away on h2.
Nakamura tried to increase the pressure but was unable to find anything concrete. Grischuk held the fort and finally achieved a draw after the time control.



Dominguez - Gelfand 1/2-1/2

Gelfand employed the trusted Sveshnikov Sicilian defence, which served him well in the World Championship against Anand in 2012.
Dominguez responded with a rare line that includes long castle - an unusual image in this opening.
Black didn't have any problems whatsoever and was able to push the thematic d5-break. His pieces sprang to activity and he quickly generated pressure against the white king.
Dominguez had to allow perpetual check before his position deteriorated further.



Tomashevsky - Karjakin 1/2-1/2

The two Russian players explored the topical Closed Catalan system where white quickly advances with the a-pawn.
Tomashevsky however spent a lot of time in the opening trying to remember the exact lines, and when the opportunity presented itself he missed the better continuation 21.Bd6.
After the game move 21.Rxa7 there were massive exchanges before the draw was signed on move 31.



Andreikin - Radjabov 1/2-1/2

The game started as King's Indian defence, then Radjabov offered transposition to Benoni, and the pawn structure finally reached the shape of the Accelerated Dragon.
By being allowed to push c4-c5 and open up the central files white achieved a small advantage.
White charged with his e-pawn to weaken the opponent's king shield, but Radjabov defended accurately and was able to trade off most of the pieces.
Andreikin probed the black's setup from all sides but just couldn't break through. After the time control white offered queens' exchange and a draw.



Kasimdzhanov - Svidler 1/2-1/2


The Uzbek Grandmaster revived the Ruy Lopez Exchange variation in the latest attempt to achieve an advantage with 1.e4.
The knight 4-step dance and the open a-file, combined with the central break, bore some fruit to white. Kasimdzhanov won a pawn and strongly pressed on the back rank.
In his turn, Svidler found a nice maneuver to shake off the white rook and slowly improve the pieces. White's advantage started decreasing as black gained counterplay.
With no winning plan in sight, white conceded a draw with moves repetition.


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Boris Gelfand leads after the 3rd round


Boris Gelfand outplayed Alexander Grischuk, who eventually lost on time in what should be already drawish position. After this game Israeli player solely leads in the tournament with 2,5 out of 3. In yet another decisive game of the round 3 Sergey Karjakin defeated Leinier Dominguez. Evgeny Tomashevsky didn't manage to break through Kasimdzhanov's defence, Fabiano Caruana missed good winning chances against Hikaru Nakamura. Two local heroes Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Teimour Radjabov drew with Russian players Dmitry Andreikin and Peter Svidler respectively.


Gelfand 1-0 Grischuk

Boris Gelfand managed to get an advantage after Grischuk played dubious plan with Na6. Nevertheless, It always looked like Black is about to equalize the position but Israeli player was finding different resources and putting some pressure on his opponent. It seemed Grischuk could not really avoid the following rook endgame with a pawn down, which basically had to be drawish. It's hard to say where exactly Grischuk went wrong but at certain point the position of White became clearly winning. Both players agreed on move 52.Rf3 being the easiest way to convert White's advantage. The move in the game (Rh5) was also strong but later on Grischuk got a chance after 57.Re8. After the last move in the game 60...Kg6 the worst for Black could have been over but for the first time in his life Alexander Grischuk, one of the best blitz players in the world and former World Champion in blitz, lost on time.


Karjakin 1-0 Dominguez

Karjakin's not really ambitious play in the opening didn't leave him any hope for the edge. “I used to play like this when I was already not that young”, commented GM Genna Sosonko on Karjakin's play at the early stage of the game. However, Russian player kept on making natural and logical moves and all of a sudden got very comfortable position with space advantage. According to Dominguez, he felt quite optimistic about his position after exchanging the queens but at the same time he could not explain the surprisingly low level of his play in the endgame. It looks like quite an easy game for Karjakin, who didn't do anything extraordinary but still defeated such a strong player as Dominguez.



Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2 Andreikin

Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, who is normally very dangerous with White, went for not the most ambitions line with 7.a3 this time and Black managed to solve opening problems quite easily. Perhaps, it would have been better for White to go for symmetrical position by playing 10.dхc5 because after 10.d5 if any of the sides could play for a win it was Black. Dmitry Andreikin could have put more pressure on his opponent in the endgame Bishop and Rook versus Knight and Rook but passed by some chances in the time trouble.


Nakamura 1/2 –1/2 Caruana

The same QGD line with Carlsbad structure which was played in the previous round between Svidler and Mamedyarov appeared in this game as well. Nakamura went for Botvinnik's move h4, which was used in the world championship match against Petrossian. It looked like Nakamura lost his track in the middle game and as he pointed out at the press conference he had to make long castling on 16th move.

American player continued to push forward, even though he had already got the feeling that his position is worse. He could have had regretted this if Caruana would find the right tactics 33...Nh3 and 34...b5. By playing 36...Ng2 Fabiano missed his last chance to play for a win. The way to keep his advantage was not so trivial but players found it at the press conference after the game. Eventually Nakamura saved the game. baku-round3-11



Radjabov 1/2-1/2 Svidler

It's hard to say what exactly Radjabov meant by playing this harmless line with White. There was no even slight hint to get any advantage and after Queens exchange the position became absolutely drawish.



Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2 Kasimdzhanov

Gruenfeld Defence with quite fashionable line with Bd2-Bc3 happened in the game. After massive exchanges and transformations players ended up in the endgame with rooks and queens. It was a very similar scenario to what Tomashevsky had at the previous day in the game against Dominguez. He was a defending side yesterday but today it was his turn to play the position without any risk. It turned out to be tough to break through because of good defence of Rustam Kasimdzhanov and the game finished in a draw.

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Round 2: Four players take early lead in Baku

Hikaru Nakamura, Peter Svidler, Fabiano Caruana and Boris Gelfand are on shared first place after the second round of the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku. Hikaru Nakamura outplayed Dmitry Andreikin, who suffers a second consecutive loss. Shakhriyar Mamedyarov fell into the trap in the time trouble and lost against Peter Svidler. Fabiano Caruana and Boris Gelfand continued theoretical discussion in a Najdorf and right before the first time control the game ended up in perpetual check. Rustam Kasimdzhanov tried to break though Radjabov's Berlin Defence but was held to a draw by Teimour.

It was also a round of missed opportunities as Alexander Grischuk and Leinier Dominguez managed to get winning positions but in both cases their opponents Sergey Karjakin and Evegeny Tomashevsky escaped with draws.


Grischuk 1/2-1/2 Karjakin

Alexander Grischuk chose a very rare line with 5.Nd2 and made his opponent Sergey Karjakin to play without any preparation from the early stage. Nevertheless Karjakin managed to get comfortable position out of the opening. The game was roughly balanced until both players got into the time trouble and things started to sharpen up. After 30...gf 31. Rf5 it became clear that Black's King is in danger. Grischuk passed by the chance to win on a spot after extravagant tactical blow Bf8! However, the move in the text was good enough to secure an advantage for White. By playing 35.Nb5 Grischuk could have brought the last piece into the attack but in the time trouble he thought the move 35.Nf6 was also good enough. Right after the time trouble it turned out that Black had enough resources to save the game.


Svidler 1-0 Mamedyarov

Black was fine after the opening but then White had a slight advantage, which according to Svidler, probably was still not enough to begin with. There was a period when White was much better but Peter made a couple of inaccurate moves which lead to an equal position. Draw seemed to be the most logical result at this point but as Peter Svidler put it during his visit to commentary room “perhaps Shakhriyar could not readjust himself to a new landscape of the game”. After 31.Bd6, apparently missed by Mamedyarov, Black's position collapsed.


Caruana 1/2-1/2 Gelfand

Theoretical dispute in Najdorf, started in January 2014 in Wijk an Zee between same players, continued today but this time Caruana chose 13.Na5 instead of 13.0-0, which brought him success in the previous game. Boris Gelfand was ready for a new line thanks to his second Alexander Huzman, who showed him exchange sacrifice before the game. After that the position became unbalanced and complex and both side had to take responsible decisions on every move. According to Boris, he missed White's move 31.c5 and simply panicked after that. Even though 32...Re8 was not the best choice but it allowed Black to finish the game with the spectacular perpetual check after Caruana's reply 33.h4. After 33.Kh1 Black would have to face serious trouble.


Kasimdzhanov 1/2-1/2 Radjabov

Berlin Defence is a newly added opening in Radjabov's repertoire. Both sides were showing usual plans until the certain point. Absolutely amazing 20.Nd8, demonstrated by Rustam, is not a move one sees every day! “It's a very pleasant move to make but I would be happier if this move would bring the victory”, pointed out former World Champion at the press conference. Even though Teimour was surprised to see Nd8, he found the precise way to equalize the position and made a confident draw in the rook endgame.


Dominguez 1/2-1/2 Tomashevsky

The longest game of the second round which lasted more than 7 hours and finished on move 100. Black managed to equalize in the opening but despite weaknesses in pawns structure Black's position remained also solid in the endgame. According to Evgeny, he could have made his life easier today by playing more precisely in the critical moment but after few mistakes had to defend a very unpleasant position instead. Cuban player missed a few good chances to win and the game eventually finished in a draw.


Andreikin 0-1 Nakamura

Dmitry Andeikin didn't choose the most principle lines against a Dutch Defence but went for quite rare plan with c3 and Qb3. 20 Nf3 was dubious decision after which the tables started to turn in Black's favor. Hikaru concentrated his pieces on the King's side and all of a sudden Black's position became very active. White's position fell apart after crucial mistake 31. Nf4.

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Round 1: Caruana and Gelfand first winners in Grand Prix in Baku


The FIDE Grand Prix in Baku started on Thursday, 1st of October, with two decisive games and four draws. Two local heroes Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Teymour Radjabov drew rather quickly and went to celebrate the 20th anniversary since their first ever game between each other has been played. Fabiano Caruana defeated Sergey Karjakin, who blundered material in the time trouble. Boris Gelfand quickly obtained a clear advantage after unsuccessful opening play from Dmitry Andreikin and eventually won the game. Leinier Dominguez missed a great chance to get decisive material advantage against Rustam Kasimdzhanov and after few more moves the game ended up in draw. Russian players Evgeny Tomashevsky and Alexander Grischuk drew a Gruenfeld that was always more or less balanced. Peter Svidler split a point with Hikaru Nakamura.


Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2 Radjabov


As it was revealed during the press conference the first game between little Teymur and Shakhriyah has been played 20 years ago in the national youth championship. None of them could have imagined that after so many years they would be both representing their country on the highest level. The opening choice already showed not the most aggressive mood of Shakhriyar. The only moment White could have continued the fight was after 14. Nce2. Nevertheless, the force line shows very good compensation for Black sacrificed material. The move in the game led to the massive exchanges and the game eventually finished in a draw as well the game played 20 years ago.


Nakamura 1/2-1/2 Svidler

According to Nakamura, he spent few hours before the game watching Svidler's videos on Gruenfeld Defence but at the last moment he decided to go for 1.e4. Ruy Lopez with early d3 appeared on the board and it turned out Peter was aware of this line and got comfortable position with Black. Both players agreed on 15.cd being not the most precise choice which leaded to quite unpleasant position for White. Hikaru felt the right moment to switch into defensive mode and managed to equalize. However, more pressure could have been put by Peter Svidler after 27...Nb6.


Karjakin 0-1 Caruana

In the opening stage players were competing in attempts to surprise each other. It's not often you can see 1.Nf3 from Sergey Karjakin as well as Queen's Gambit Declined is not the first choice of Caruana. In Carlsbad structure Sergey managed to add marginal edge by playing unusual 12.Ne2 which Caruana declared to be a novelty. Till some point the game developed logically. White passed an interesting attempt to play 22.h4 forcing Black to go for 22...g4 23.Be4 de 24.Nd2 minimizing Black's counter play and preparing a minority attack on the King's side. Despite exciting transformations the game had been balanced until 35. a4. Around move 30 Karjakin failed into an unusual trap. He went to the player's room and was monitoring the game from the TV screen. Because of technical problem with live transmission Sergey Karjakin thought his opponent was still thinking on his move and so he missed 10 priceless minutes which cost him dearly in the time trouble.


Gelfand 1-0 Andreikin

Andreikin went for a fashionable line of Queens Indian possibly basing his preparation on the game Gelfand-Gashimov. It turned out that Boris has something up his sleeve as he had closely analyzed this position 2 years ago. The opening battle finished in favor of Gelfand, who sacrificed a pawn but got a very dangerous initiative. Boris was doing practical and logical moves increasing the pressure and tried to play “without burning the bridges”. Perhaps, Black could have put tougher resistance but it 's hard to believe it would have changed the outcome of the game.


Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2 Grischuk

According to Grischuk, both of the players were definitely analyzing this variation in Gruenfeld and the following endgame at home. “ I was trying to remember all variations, that's why I spent so much time during the game”, said Alexander. After 17. Qd3 Black has to be precise to equalize and after spending some time Grischuk managed to remember the right way.


Dominguez 1/2-1/2 Kasimdzhanov

Leinier decided to avoid theoretical lines in order to postpone a fight for the middle game stage. But as both players pointed out, surprisingly it took them too long to go into the middle game and as a result both of them had 1 hour in total after 12 moves. After 17...Qa6 it seemed Black has got initiative but Dominguez managed to create counter play. In the time trouble Leiner was granted a sudden chance after Rustam's careless 25...Rc8 but Cuban player passed by a relatively easy tactical trick 26.Ne7, which would win the game on a spot. Leiner realized his mistake right after his move and no wonder that the players decided not to tempt fate and agreed for a draw few moves later.

SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1 GM Dominguez Perez Leinier 2751 0.5-0.5 GM Kasimdzhanov Rustam 2706 12 2 GM Tomashevsky Evgeny 2701 0.5-0.5 GM Grischuk Alexander 2797 11 3 GM Karjakin Sergey 2767 0-1 GM Caruana Fabiano 2844 10 4 GM Gelfand Boris 2748 1-0 GM Andreikin Dmitry 2722 9 5 GM Nakamura Hikaru 2764 0.5-0.5 GM Svidler Peter 2732 8 6 GM Mamedyarov Shakhriyar 2764 0.5-0.5 GM Radjabov Teimour 2726 7



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The first stage of Grand Prix Series 2014-2015 started in Baku



The long-awaited FIDE Grand Prix in Baku was officially opened on Wednesday evening at the Cultural Event Center. The tournament's opening ceremony was attended by chess officials, sponsors, national and international chess media.

From 2nd till 14of October over eleven rounds, the strongest players in the world will compete in the round robin tournament.

The opening ceremony started with a one-minute of silence to honor the memory of one of the leading chess players of Azerbaijan Vugar Hashimov. The ceremony proceeded with a short documentary, showing the development of chess in Azerbaijan.

Speakers at the event included the Minister of Youth and Sports of Azerbaijan Republic Azad Rahimov, President of Azerbaijan Chess Federation Elman Rustamov and FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.

Kirsan Ilyumzhinov reminded the guests of the long chess tradition in the Cultural Event Center, where the games will take place. “The building has historical importance as two USSR chess championships (1961 and 1972) were organized here. It was World Champion Boris Spassky who won the championship in 1961 and in 1972 Mikhail Tal became the USSR champion. I hope that one of the participants of the Baku Grand Prix will also become a world champion one day.”

FIDE President stressed the important role of the national leader Heydar Aliyev in the development of chess not only in Azerbaijan, but also in the former USSR. "The national leader Heydar Aliyev made a huge contribution to the development of chess not only in Azerbaijan but also in the USSR. If Heydar Aliyev did not notice and would not have supported small Garik Weinstein, then there would be no World Champion Garry Kasparov. Azerbaijan is the only country from 181, which has the state program for the development of chess. The President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev continues to develop this wise game.”



During the opening ceremony the director of the “Classic Jewelry House Lobortas” Igor Lobortas demonstrated the models of future Big and Small trophies to award the FIDE Grand Prix series 2014-2015 winner. The trophy consists of precious elements and stones of varying size, including silver, gold and diamonds.



Chief Arbiter Faik Gasanov then proceeded with drawing of lots. He called up the players to come to the table and choose the boxes with souvenirs with numbers inside.

During the drawing of lots the opening ceremony and the pairs of the first round are:

Dominguez - Kasimdzhanov
Tomashevsky - Grischuk
Karjakin - Caruana
Gelfand - Andreikin
Nakamura - Svidler
Mamedyarov - Radjabov

The announcement of the pair between two local heroes Mamedyarov-Radjabov was met with applause by guests of the ceremony.



Over the next two weeks Baku will be the main chess centre in the world, so please follow the games starting from 3 pm local time.

GM Emil Sutovsky and GM Evgeny Miroshnichenko will be official commentators during the whole event.

The third Grand Prix series 2014-2015 starts with the first stage in Baku (Azerbaijan). Back in 2008 it was also the capital of Azerbaijan which hosted the first ever Grand Prix stage and a great deal has changed since then as FIDE has organized 30 Grand Prix tournaments.
In contrast to the two previous Grand Prix cycles the number of tournaments was decreased from six to four to be held over two years (2014-2015). Each of 16 players of Grand Prix series will play in three tournaments out of four and all his results will be taken into account for the overall final standings of the Grand Prix. The winner and second placed player overall of the Grand Prix Series will qualify for the Candidates Tournament to be held in the last quarter of 2015 or the first half of 2016.

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Baku Grand Prix: Round 9

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Round 9: Six players lead after day full of excitement!

After the entertaining round 9 of FIDE Grand Prix in Baku and losses by Caruana and Gelfand, the tournament is wide open with only two games to go!
The round abounded with the decisive results despite two relatively quick draws in Radjabov-Karjakin and Svidler-Tomashevsky.
Next, Nakamura won a piece from Kasimdzhanov, while Mamedyarov defeated Gelfand.
More action followed when Caruana erred and allowed Grischuk to unleash the combined power of the queen and the knight.
Dominguez assumed the advantage after Andreikin's ungrounded piece sacrifice, but then the Cuban lost the thread and the game.
Two rounds before the end as many as six players are sharing the lead: Caruana, Nakamura, Karjakin, Gelfand, Radjabov and Svidler.

Results and pairings are here, crosstable is here. Visit also the photo gallery and replay the games.



Nakamura - Kasimdzhanov 1-0

Black attempted to play the Berlin Ruy Lopez but white avoided the famous queenless middlegame and preferred the structure similar to the Exchange Variation.
White succeeded in pushing d4 and black gave up the bishops' pair in order to trade the queens.
Black looked solid until Nakamura set a small trap with 22.Bg3 into which his opponent fell head in. With white trapping a piece on the back-rank, black immediately gave up.



Mamedyarov - Gelfand 1-0

White's restrained opening setup with 4.e3 was probably devised against Gelfand's favourite Gruenfeld Indian defence. The play soon transposed to the Benoni, where black appeared to have an extra tempo.
The light-squared bishops were exchanged and it looked like black will equalise with ease.
But after a couple of aimless moves by Gelfand white got some action going against the d6-pawn.
Black lost that pawn and was faced with new and stronger threats. Gelfand gave up on move 37.
Azerbaijan chess fans are absolutely delighted with Mamedyarov's first victory.



Svidler - Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2

Playing the white side of the Ruy Lopez Anti-Marshall, Svidler was not cautious enough and his 12.c3 allowed a strong reply in 12...c4.
Black snatched the pawn on a4, but instead of trying to fight for an advantage, he repeated the moves in the early stage of the game.
This was ninth consecutive draw for Tomashevsky.



Radjabov - Karjakin 1/2-1/2

 
The players explored the topical line of the English Opening where white has better pawn structure but black pieces are sufficiently active.
18.Rc2 practically invited black to liquidate the tension down to opposite-coloured bishops endgame. Draw signed on 30th move.



Caruana - Grischuk 0-1

Caruana repeated 3.f3 line against Gruenfeld Indian defence that brought him success earlier in the clash with Svidler.
But Grischuk was not intimidated, having prepared a highly original line that made his opponent think from the early stage of the game.
Black even sacrificed a pawn for the kind of counterplay that resembled Sveshnikov Sicilian or Benko Gambit.
At some point Caruana refused moves repetition and allowed black knight into play.
This double-edged act quickly turned against white when he erred which 32.Kg1. The knight started doing wonders and white position simply collapsed.
Grischuk duly converted the advantage on move 52.



Andreikin - Dominguez 1-0

Dominguez was ready to meet the Trompovsky Attack and acquired good position with black.
In order to reverse the negative trend Andreikin tried to unbalance the position with a knight sacrifice. Black was not impressed and slowly increased the advantage.
However, one careless move with a queen (32...Qd3) allowed white to get back in the game. That was only the first of several mistakes by black who ended up in worse ending being a pawn down.
Andreikin took the chance and finally delivered full point after 56 moves of play.



Round 8: Svidler defeats Dominguez, no changes on top

Peter Svidler defeated Leinier Dominguez while the other five games were drawn in the 8th round of the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku.

Fabiano Caruana and Boris Gelfand remain tied on the top with 5 points each and Svidler moved ahead to the shared third place.

Saturday 11th October is the second rest day.

Results and pairings are here, crosstable is here. Visit also the photo gallery and replay the games.



Kasimdzhanov - Caruana 1/2-1/2

Caruana defended with the Gruenfeld Indian and Kasimdzhanov countered with the Russian system. In a sharp but deeply explored a6-line the pieces were quickly going off in a forced variation.
In the resulting endgame white held a passed pawn within the queenside majority but this asset was firmly blocked by the black knight. White couldn't find anything better than repetition of moves.



Gelfand - Nakamura 1/2-1/2

Nakamura employed his trusted Dutch Leningrad defence. The early 12...b5 thrust allowed white a tactics with 14.Ne5, but he didn't follow through with the most complicated 15.Bb7.
Instead, the game move 15.Nd3 offered some prospects for a positional pressure. However, following the central break with 18.e4 and the long forced line the position simplified into a rook endgame. Black comfortably held the draw.
At the press conference Gelfand agreed that 15.Bb7 might have been a better try. He had hoped that the game continuation would grant him positional advantage but Nakamura found a great defending resource in 17...Rb8.



Karjakin - Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2

In the Meran Slav defence white achieved a minimal opening advantage after black was left with an isolated d5-pawn.
But in compensation all black pieces were actively placed and it was not easy to make progress.
With smart exchanges and patient positional build-up white got himself in position to increase the advantage.
However, with the terrible time trouble looming Karjakin decided to repeat the moves and take a draw. In the final position he was still better.



Tomashevsky - Radjabov 1/2-1/2

Evgeny Tomashevsky attempted to find an improvement for white over the game Parligras-Radjabov from the recent Chess Olympiad in Tromso.
He came up with 13.Neg5, hoping to, in his own words, "end the series of draws".
15.Nxf7 sacrifice and particularly the neat 19.c6 made white look good, but Radjabov's defence was marvelous and he forced the transition to opposite-coloured bishops ending that was immediately drawn.



Dominguez - Svidler 0-1

Dominguez's slow-paced Ruy Lopez with the two-step d4 inspired Svidler to come up with the new plan based on quick exchange on d4 and Bg4 pin.
White run into an early trouble after over-extending his pawn structure. The only hope to untangle was to give up a pawn and head for the double rook endgame.
It took some time to come up with the right plan, but Svidler masterfully converted the advantage into full point.



Grischuk - Andreikin 1/2-1/2

It was a regular Berlin Ruy Lopez where the queens are traded early on, followed by long maneuvering from both sides.
An endgame with rooks and opposite-coloured bishops was reached. Black gave up a pawn in order to simplify the structure.
White was trying to find a way to increase the advantage but the black pieces were well placed to cover the weaknesses and hold the advance of the passed f-pawn.
Grischuk finally conceded a draw on move 77.



Round 7: Caruana stopped, Gelfand joins in the lead


Fabiano Caruana's impressive run has been put to a halt in round 7 of the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku when he was defeated by the tail-ender Dmitry Andreikin. This was Caruana's first loss since the Chess Olympiad in Tromso.
Boris Gelfand joined the Italian on the shared first place with 4,5 points each after a draw against Rustam Kasimdzhanov.
Sergey Karjakin scored against Hikaru Nakamura, while the games Svidler - Grischuk, Mamedyarov - Tomashevsky and Radjabov - Dominguez were drawn.

Results and pairings are here, crosstable is here. Visit also the photo gallery and replay the games.



Svidler - Grischuk 1/2-1/2

In the Moscow Sicilian white retreated his bishop to d3, in a maneuver that became popular recently. Grischuk already faced this plan, in a blitz game last month against Karjakin, and was obviously well prepared.
11.e5 was novelty, but it allowed black to double white's f-pawns and anchor the knight on dominant central square.
White relied on a quick action against the black king, but black pieces were placed well and Svidler decided to take the perpetual check before it was too late.
After the game Gelfand approached Svidler and jokingly advised "you should develop all your pieces before embarking on such action".
Grischuk said he is currently reading "And Quiet Flows the Don", the 4-volume masterpiece of the Russian literature by Mikhail Sholokhov, adding that it is a very difficult book.



Mamedyarov - Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2

Against the Slav defence, Mamedyarov answered in "Catalan fashion", with 4.g3. He is not a stranger to this development, having already played it against Nakamura in Gashimov Memorial earlier this year.
Tomashevsky deviated from that game, seeking an early clarification in the center with 6...dxc4.
With the compromised pawn structures on the kingside, both players decided to castle long.
White tried to expand in the center and his three pawns were imposing, but at the same time fragile without the base support.
Black was in position to get something going with 30...Qb4, but he wanted to be safe and repeated the moves for a draw.



Radjabov - Dominguez 1/2-1/2

Another game with the topical 3.f3 against the Gruenfeld Indian defence. Dominguez challenged white's advantage in the center, while Radjabov responded by opening up the h-file.
Naturally, white castled long and tried to advance the passed d-pawn. Black was occupied with the opening of the powerful bishop's diagonal.
After the inferior 22.Nd5, black was able to transfer his rook to a4 and place the white king into danger. Radjabov then reacted properly and Dominguez could not find the decisive blow, instead settling for a draw with perpetual check.
Later at the press conference both players said that it was fun to play this game, with many exciting lines to be considered.



Nakamura - Karjakin 0-1

Nakamura, always enterprising in the opening, started the game with Veresov Attack. Karjakin, in his turn, played a novelty as early as on move 5...c4.
With the opposite castles on the board, black got better from the opening by snatching the stranded pawn on c5.
Nakamura tried to mount an attack against the enemy king, but to no avail, and black succeeded in trading the queens to reach better ending.
Karjakin's technique was impeccable and he delivered full point around the second time control.



Gelfand - Kasimdzhanov 1/2-1/2

It was a Queen's Gambit Declined where Gelfand performed his trademarked positional squeeze. White was always just slightly better and it was not easy for black to come up with counterplay.
Finally, Kasimdzhanov lost patience and traded down to the rook ending where white was still the more active side.
But black defended tenaciously and finally pulled a miraculous save to reach a theoretical draw in the rook vs pawn endgame.



Andreikin - Caruana 1-0

Caruana surprised his opponent and the entire internet audience by going for the Scandinavian defence.
White avoided the sharpest lines and preferred a positional build-up. In the transition between the opening and the middlegame something went wrong for black as he allowed his opponent to establish a passed pawn on d6.
Andreikin was inspired and never let the advantage go. He successfully reached an endgame with the extra pawn on the c-file.
Caruana fought valiantly but could not save the difficult position. He finally resigned on move 64.


Round 6: Fabiano Caruana surges ahead

Fabiano Caruana defeated Peter Svidler in the 6th round of FIDE Grand Prix in Baku to move into sole lead with 4,5 points. Yesterday's co-leader Boris Gelfand was held to a draw by Sergey Karjakin.
In the other decisive games Rustam Kasimdzhanov scored against Dmitry Andreikin, and the local chess fans are thrilled about Teimour Radjabov's first victory, against Alexander Grischuk.
Leinier Dominguez - Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Evgeny Tomashevsky - Hikaru Nakamura were drawn.

Results and pairings

Crosstable

Photo gallery


Replay the games



Caruana - Svidler 1-0

The clash between the two experts on Gruenfeld Indian defence saw a topical new line 3.f3 that come to prominence in the recent years.
The centralised black knight provoked white to get his central pawns rolling with 16.g4 and 17.f4. However, already the next move 18.e5 might have been a tad premature as black sacrificed the knight for three pawns and strong counterplay.
A sharp battle ensued, but black made a couple of inaccuracies that allowed the opponent to coordinate the forces and launch a fierce attack. With the trend definitely shifting into white's favour, Svidler resigned on move 33.



Kasimdzhanov - Andreikin 1-0

Andreikin employed the Philidor defence, but something went wrong in the early stages of the game as he was forced to weaken the queenside pawn structure.
After a series of neat positional maneuvers white was rewarded with a combination that won him an exchange and two pawns.
Black went all in trying to make something against the white king, but Kasimdzhanov duly refuted the attack and converted the advantage.



Grischuk - Radjabov 0-1

In the Fianchetto Gruenfeld Indian white had the pair of bishops but black easily equalised in a relatively closed position.
After 22...cxd5 black pawn structure was ultra-solid and it was not clear how either of the players could push for a win.
But Grischuk's hasty 25.f4, which irrevocably weakened the e3-pawn, coupled with the poor time management, definitely shifted the advantage to black side.
After the queens went off, white position was beyond salvation.



Tomashevsky - Nakamura 1/2-1/2

Another day with the Lasker Variation of the Queen's Gambit Declined, only this time Tomashevsky chose 9.Qc2 over Radjabov's 9.Rc1.
White attempted to slow down black's advance c7-c5, but Nakamura nevertheless pushed the pawn offering a temporary sacrifice.
As it happens so often in this opening, the queenside pawns were cleared off the table and heavy pieces got exchanged on the open files.
The resulting endgame offered no chances to play for a victory, but the players continued the game until moves were repeated around the first time control.



Dominguez - Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2


In the Closed Ruy Lopez black achieved a harmonic development and stood rather well. Doubling the white pawns on f3 on moves 18 or 19 deserved attention.
But Mamedyarov chose a different path and tried to undermine white's center.
On move 28 white avoided the trade of the queens, but probably missed that his Re1 is hanging in some lines. As a consequence, black was able to execute massive exchanges down to the equal rook endgame. Draw agreed on move 38.



Karjakin - Gelfand 1/2-1/2

It was a promising start - the Sicilian Naidorf with Fischer's 6.h3. But black avoided the sharp lines and preferred to force the exchange of the queens.
Gelfand enjoyed a slightly better pawn structure, but white knights dominated the central squares and there was no way through.
Draw was signed after the obligatory 30 moves when both players were already down to the last 5 minutes.



Round 5: All games drawn

Following the rest day, the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku continued with round 5 on Tuesday. In the longest game of the day Hikaru Namakura tried to convert the advantage of two pawns but Leinier Dominguez defended accurately and escaped with a tie.

With all games drawn, Boris Gelfand and Fabiano Caruana continue to lead the standings with 3.5 points each.

Results and pairings are here, crosstable is here.


See also the photo galleries




Mamedyarov - Grischuk 1/2-1/2

In one of the most interesting games of the day Grischuk defended with the Leningrad Dutch that soon turned into a wild affair with pieces hanging left and right.
Mamedyarov took the straightforward path of challenging the black structure with quick e2-e4. Black responded by snatching the c4-pawn.
White did have a strong compensation as black pieces were tied up, but a couple of "only-moves" helped Grischuk to survive the onslaught and trade the pieces down to an equal endgame.
Later Grischuk explained that he had analysed the position almost until the end. He was searching for winning attempts for white, but it turned out that black survives with precise sequence of moves.



Radjabov - Caruana 1/2-1/2

The top rated player of the tournament Fabiano Caruana defended with the Lasker variation of the Queen's Gambit Declined, which was famously featured in the decisive game of the Topalov-Anand World Championship Match in 2012.
In a typical fashion, white piled up his heavy pieces on the c-file to press black's exposed pawn structure.
But black had a simple solution to liquidate all the pawns on one side of the board. After the queens went off, it was obvious that the game will soon be drawn and the scoresheets were signed on move 34.



Svidler - Andreikin 1/2-1/2

After solving the problem with his laptop on the rest day, Peter Svidler faced a new challenge when Dmitry Andreikin opened with the French defence, which was a surprise for white.
Svidler never really posed any threats to his opponent, and after the exchange of the queens, it became clear that today Andreikin is having an easy ride.
Black castled long, doubled white's f-pawns and achieved certain activity. Before landing into inferior position, white decided to trade everything down to opposite-coloured bishops ending. Draw agreed on move 31.



Karjakin - Kasimdzhanov 1/2-1/2

Kasimdzhanov has been Karjakin's trainer for quite some time already and it was not easy for the young Russian to produce opening surprise. Eventually he went for Korchnoi's favourite 6.a3 in the English Opening.
Black responded with action in center and promptly conceded the bishops' pair in order to make a symmetrical pawn structure. 12...Ne4 marked the start of a nice maneuver which cleared the central files to black's favor.
Being in danger of simply ending up worse, white had to carefully navigate the waters around the anchored knight on d4.
Kasimdzhanov could not find a way to increase the advantage and finally retreated the knight to allow exchange of the queens. Draw was agreed after the obligatory 30th move.



Gelfand - Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2

This game saw a small bidding war in the opening - black angled for the Noteboom Semi-Slav, which white prevented by offering Meran Slav, until the pawn structure was finally shaped into Dutch Stonewall.
The small benefit for black was that with the pawn on e3 white dark-coloured bishop remained inside the pawn-chain.
After the regular developing moves, black pushed c6-c5 to challenge white's center. A couple of moves later he was the first to release the tension with dxc4.
White pressed on the backward e6-pawn and was able to win it, but black picked up solid counterplay in the process.
The resulting rook endgame was completely even and the players shook hands on move 31.



Nakamura - Dominguez 1/2-1/2

In response to Nakamura's English Opening the Cuban Grandmaster picked the reversed Botvinnik setup, but then immediately surprised the commentators with the slightly unusual 8...d5.
White answered with principled 12.b4 and was able to exert some pressure on the black position.
Black sacrificed a pawn in an attempt to clear the entire queenside, but then he realised that the planned 23...Ra1 is simply refuted with 24.Rxg7+.
23...Ra4 still looked to sufficient to win back the pawn, but Dominguez played 23...Bd4 instead. Nakamura replied with the strong 24.g4 which opened another battle-front to white's benefit.
Nakamura won the second pawn, but the timely 31...Re5 allowed black to create sufficient counterplay. Nakamura still tried to play for a win, but finally had to concede a draw before the second time control.


Round 4: Caruana joins Gelfand on top


In the only decisive game of the 4th round of FIDE Grand Prix in Baku, Italian star Fabiano Caruana defeated the local hero Shakhriyar Mamedyarov to catch the former world championship challenger Boris Gelfand on the shared first place.
The remaining five games were drawn. Gelfand and Caruana are on the top of the crosstable with 3 points each. Full standings here.



Caruana - Mamedyarov 1-0


The game started as a relatively quiet Slav Defence, but Mamedyarov didn't wait long to disturb the balance with the enterprising 8...g5.
GM Avrukh dubbed the move as "inferior" in his repertoire book, and it appears rightly so.
Black still had an option to stay solid and try to improve the pieces, but instead he started a premature attack with 14...g4. A cute maneuver Nc3-e2-f4 by white underlined the poor placement of the black pieces.
Mamedyarov went all in with an exchange sacrifice that gave him only temporary counterplay, but this was easily refuted by Caruana who sealed the victory on move 34.



Grischuk - Nakamura 1/2-1/2

Alexander Grischuk answered the King's Indian defence with Gligoric variation 8.Be3 and proceeded with the move "recommended by his friend" - 15.Rc1.
He was unhappy with the outcome of the opening as he ended in terribly passive position with the bishop locked away on h2.
Nakamura tried to increase the pressure but was unable to find anything concrete. Grischuk held the fort and finally achieved a draw after the time control.



Dominguez - Gelfand 1/2-1/2

Gelfand employed the trusted Sveshnikov Sicilian defence, which served him well in the World Championship against Anand in 2012.
Dominguez responded with a rare line that includes long castle - an unusual image in this opening.
Black didn't have any problems whatsoever and was able to push the thematic d5-break. His pieces sprang to activity and he quickly generated pressure against the white king.
Dominguez had to allow perpetual check before his position deteriorated further.



Tomashevsky - Karjakin 1/2-1/2

The two Russian players explored the topical Closed Catalan system where white quickly advances with the a-pawn.
Tomashevsky however spent a lot of time in the opening trying to remember the exact lines, and when the opportunity presented itself he missed the better continuation 21.Bd6.
After the game move 21.Rxa7 there were massive exchanges before the draw was signed on move 31.



Andreikin - Radjabov 1/2-1/2

The game started as King's Indian defence, then Radjabov offered transposition to Benoni, and the pawn structure finally reached the shape of the Accelerated Dragon.
By being allowed to push c4-c5 and open up the central files white achieved a small advantage.
White charged with his e-pawn to weaken the opponent's king shield, but Radjabov defended accurately and was able to trade off most of the pieces.
Andreikin probed the black's setup from all sides but just couldn't break through. After the time control white offered queens' exchange and a draw.



Kasimdzhanov - Svidler 1/2-1/2


The Uzbek Grandmaster revived the Ruy Lopez Exchange variation in the latest attempt to achieve an advantage with 1.e4.
The knight 4-step dance and the open a-file, combined with the central break, bore some fruit to white. Kasimdzhanov won a pawn and strongly pressed on the back rank.
In his turn, Svidler found a nice maneuver to shake off the white rook and slowly improve the pieces. White's advantage started decreasing as black gained counterplay.
With no winning plan in sight, white conceded a draw with moves repetition.


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Boris Gelfand leads after the 3rd round


Boris Gelfand outplayed Alexander Grischuk, who eventually lost on time in what should be already drawish position. After this game Israeli player solely leads in the tournament with 2,5 out of 3. In yet another decisive game of the round 3 Sergey Karjakin defeated Leinier Dominguez. Evgeny Tomashevsky didn't manage to break through Kasimdzhanov's defence, Fabiano Caruana missed good winning chances against Hikaru Nakamura. Two local heroes Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Teimour Radjabov drew with Russian players Dmitry Andreikin and Peter Svidler respectively.


Gelfand 1-0 Grischuk

Boris Gelfand managed to get an advantage after Grischuk played dubious plan with Na6. Nevertheless, It always looked like Black is about to equalize the position but Israeli player was finding different resources and putting some pressure on his opponent. It seemed Grischuk could not really avoid the following rook endgame with a pawn down, which basically had to be drawish. It's hard to say where exactly Grischuk went wrong but at certain point the position of White became clearly winning. Both players agreed on move 52.Rf3 being the easiest way to convert White's advantage. The move in the game (Rh5) was also strong but later on Grischuk got a chance after 57.Re8. After the last move in the game 60...Kg6 the worst for Black could have been over but for the first time in his life Alexander Grischuk, one of the best blitz players in the world and former World Champion in blitz, lost on time.


Karjakin 1-0 Dominguez

Karjakin's not really ambitious play in the opening didn't leave him any hope for the edge. “I used to play like this when I was already not that young”, commented GM Genna Sosonko on Karjakin's play at the early stage of the game. However, Russian player kept on making natural and logical moves and all of a sudden got very comfortable position with space advantage. According to Dominguez, he felt quite optimistic about his position after exchanging the queens but at the same time he could not explain the surprisingly low level of his play in the endgame. It looks like quite an easy game for Karjakin, who didn't do anything extraordinary but still defeated such a strong player as Dominguez.



Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2 Andreikin

Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, who is normally very dangerous with White, went for not the most ambitions line with 7.a3 this time and Black managed to solve opening problems quite easily. Perhaps, it would have been better for White to go for symmetrical position by playing 10.dхc5 because after 10.d5 if any of the sides could play for a win it was Black. Dmitry Andreikin could have put more pressure on his opponent in the endgame Bishop and Rook versus Knight and Rook but passed by some chances in the time trouble.


Nakamura 1/2 –1/2 Caruana

The same QGD line with Carlsbad structure which was played in the previous round between Svidler and Mamedyarov appeared in this game as well. Nakamura went for Botvinnik's move h4, which was used in the world championship match against Petrossian. It looked like Nakamura lost his track in the middle game and as he pointed out at the press conference he had to make long castling on 16th move.

American player continued to push forward, even though he had already got the feeling that his position is worse. He could have had regretted this if Caruana would find the right tactics 33...Nh3 and 34...b5. By playing 36...Ng2 Fabiano missed his last chance to play for a win. The way to keep his advantage was not so trivial but players found it at the press conference after the game. Eventually Nakamura saved the game. baku-round3-11



Radjabov 1/2-1/2 Svidler

It's hard to say what exactly Radjabov meant by playing this harmless line with White. There was no even slight hint to get any advantage and after Queens exchange the position became absolutely drawish.



Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2 Kasimdzhanov

Gruenfeld Defence with quite fashionable line with Bd2-Bc3 happened in the game. After massive exchanges and transformations players ended up in the endgame with rooks and queens. It was a very similar scenario to what Tomashevsky had at the previous day in the game against Dominguez. He was a defending side yesterday but today it was his turn to play the position without any risk. It turned out to be tough to break through because of good defence of Rustam Kasimdzhanov and the game finished in a draw.

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Round 2: Four players take early lead in Baku

Hikaru Nakamura, Peter Svidler, Fabiano Caruana and Boris Gelfand are on shared first place after the second round of the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku. Hikaru Nakamura outplayed Dmitry Andreikin, who suffers a second consecutive loss. Shakhriyar Mamedyarov fell into the trap in the time trouble and lost against Peter Svidler. Fabiano Caruana and Boris Gelfand continued theoretical discussion in a Najdorf and right before the first time control the game ended up in perpetual check. Rustam Kasimdzhanov tried to break though Radjabov's Berlin Defence but was held to a draw by Teimour.

It was also a round of missed opportunities as Alexander Grischuk and Leinier Dominguez managed to get winning positions but in both cases their opponents Sergey Karjakin and Evegeny Tomashevsky escaped with draws.


Grischuk 1/2-1/2 Karjakin

Alexander Grischuk chose a very rare line with 5.Nd2 and made his opponent Sergey Karjakin to play without any preparation from the early stage. Nevertheless Karjakin managed to get comfortable position out of the opening. The game was roughly balanced until both players got into the time trouble and things started to sharpen up. After 30...gf 31. Rf5 it became clear that Black's King is in danger. Grischuk passed by the chance to win on a spot after extravagant tactical blow Bf8! However, the move in the text was good enough to secure an advantage for White. By playing 35.Nb5 Grischuk could have brought the last piece into the attack but in the time trouble he thought the move 35.Nf6 was also good enough. Right after the time trouble it turned out that Black had enough resources to save the game.


Svidler 1-0 Mamedyarov

Black was fine after the opening but then White had a slight advantage, which according to Svidler, probably was still not enough to begin with. There was a period when White was much better but Peter made a couple of inaccurate moves which lead to an equal position. Draw seemed to be the most logical result at this point but as Peter Svidler put it during his visit to commentary room “perhaps Shakhriyar could not readjust himself to a new landscape of the game”. After 31.Bd6, apparently missed by Mamedyarov, Black's position collapsed.


Caruana 1/2-1/2 Gelfand

Theoretical dispute in Najdorf, started in January 2014 in Wijk an Zee between same players, continued today but this time Caruana chose 13.Na5 instead of 13.0-0, which brought him success in the previous game. Boris Gelfand was ready for a new line thanks to his second Alexander Huzman, who showed him exchange sacrifice before the game. After that the position became unbalanced and complex and both side had to take responsible decisions on every move. According to Boris, he missed White's move 31.c5 and simply panicked after that. Even though 32...Re8 was not the best choice but it allowed Black to finish the game with the spectacular perpetual check after Caruana's reply 33.h4. After 33.Kh1 Black would have to face serious trouble.


Kasimdzhanov 1/2-1/2 Radjabov

Berlin Defence is a newly added opening in Radjabov's repertoire. Both sides were showing usual plans until the certain point. Absolutely amazing 20.Nd8, demonstrated by Rustam, is not a move one sees every day! “It's a very pleasant move to make but I would be happier if this move would bring the victory”, pointed out former World Champion at the press conference. Even though Teimour was surprised to see Nd8, he found the precise way to equalize the position and made a confident draw in the rook endgame.


Dominguez 1/2-1/2 Tomashevsky

The longest game of the second round which lasted more than 7 hours and finished on move 100. Black managed to equalize in the opening but despite weaknesses in pawns structure Black's position remained also solid in the endgame. According to Evgeny, he could have made his life easier today by playing more precisely in the critical moment but after few mistakes had to defend a very unpleasant position instead. Cuban player missed a few good chances to win and the game eventually finished in a draw.


Andreikin 0-1 Nakamura

Dmitry Andeikin didn't choose the most principle lines against a Dutch Defence but went for quite rare plan with c3 and Qb3. 20 Nf3 was dubious decision after which the tables started to turn in Black's favor. Hikaru concentrated his pieces on the King's side and all of a sudden Black's position became very active. White's position fell apart after crucial mistake 31. Nf4.

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Round 1: Caruana and Gelfand first winners in Grand Prix in Baku


The FIDE Grand Prix in Baku started on Thursday, 1st of October, with two decisive games and four draws. Two local heroes Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Teymour Radjabov drew rather quickly and went to celebrate the 20th anniversary since their first ever game between each other has been played. Fabiano Caruana defeated Sergey Karjakin, who blundered material in the time trouble. Boris Gelfand quickly obtained a clear advantage after unsuccessful opening play from Dmitry Andreikin and eventually won the game. Leinier Dominguez missed a great chance to get decisive material advantage against Rustam Kasimdzhanov and after few more moves the game ended up in draw. Russian players Evgeny Tomashevsky and Alexander Grischuk drew a Gruenfeld that was always more or less balanced. Peter Svidler split a point with Hikaru Nakamura.


Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2 Radjabov


As it was revealed during the press conference the first game between little Teymur and Shakhriyah has been played 20 years ago in the national youth championship. None of them could have imagined that after so many years they would be both representing their country on the highest level. The opening choice already showed not the most aggressive mood of Shakhriyar. The only moment White could have continued the fight was after 14. Nce2. Nevertheless, the force line shows very good compensation for Black sacrificed material. The move in the game led to the massive exchanges and the game eventually finished in a draw as well the game played 20 years ago.


Nakamura 1/2-1/2 Svidler

According to Nakamura, he spent few hours before the game watching Svidler's videos on Gruenfeld Defence but at the last moment he decided to go for 1.e4. Ruy Lopez with early d3 appeared on the board and it turned out Peter was aware of this line and got comfortable position with Black. Both players agreed on 15.cd being not the most precise choice which leaded to quite unpleasant position for White. Hikaru felt the right moment to switch into defensive mode and managed to equalize. However, more pressure could have been put by Peter Svidler after 27...Nb6.


Karjakin 0-1 Caruana

In the opening stage players were competing in attempts to surprise each other. It's not often you can see 1.Nf3 from Sergey Karjakin as well as Queen's Gambit Declined is not the first choice of Caruana. In Carlsbad structure Sergey managed to add marginal edge by playing unusual 12.Ne2 which Caruana declared to be a novelty. Till some point the game developed logically. White passed an interesting attempt to play 22.h4 forcing Black to go for 22...g4 23.Be4 de 24.Nd2 minimizing Black's counter play and preparing a minority attack on the King's side. Despite exciting transformations the game had been balanced until 35. a4. Around move 30 Karjakin failed into an unusual trap. He went to the player's room and was monitoring the game from the TV screen. Because of technical problem with live transmission Sergey Karjakin thought his opponent was still thinking on his move and so he missed 10 priceless minutes which cost him dearly in the time trouble.


Gelfand 1-0 Andreikin

Andreikin went for a fashionable line of Queens Indian possibly basing his preparation on the game Gelfand-Gashimov. It turned out that Boris has something up his sleeve as he had closely analyzed this position 2 years ago. The opening battle finished in favor of Gelfand, who sacrificed a pawn but got a very dangerous initiative. Boris was doing practical and logical moves increasing the pressure and tried to play “without burning the bridges”. Perhaps, Black could have put tougher resistance but it 's hard to believe it would have changed the outcome of the game.


Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2 Grischuk

According to Grischuk, both of the players were definitely analyzing this variation in Gruenfeld and the following endgame at home. “ I was trying to remember all variations, that's why I spent so much time during the game”, said Alexander. After 17. Qd3 Black has to be precise to equalize and after spending some time Grischuk managed to remember the right way.


Dominguez 1/2-1/2 Kasimdzhanov

Leinier decided to avoid theoretical lines in order to postpone a fight for the middle game stage. But as both players pointed out, surprisingly it took them too long to go into the middle game and as a result both of them had 1 hour in total after 12 moves. After 17...Qa6 it seemed Black has got initiative but Dominguez managed to create counter play. In the time trouble Leiner was granted a sudden chance after Rustam's careless 25...Rc8 but Cuban player passed by a relatively easy tactical trick 26.Ne7, which would win the game on a spot. Leiner realized his mistake right after his move and no wonder that the players decided not to tempt fate and agreed for a draw few moves later.

SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1 GM Dominguez Perez Leinier 2751 0.5-0.5 GM Kasimdzhanov Rustam 2706 12 2 GM Tomashevsky Evgeny 2701 0.5-0.5 GM Grischuk Alexander 2797 11 3 GM Karjakin Sergey 2767 0-1 GM Caruana Fabiano 2844 10 4 GM Gelfand Boris 2748 1-0 GM Andreikin Dmitry 2722 9 5 GM Nakamura Hikaru 2764 0.5-0.5 GM Svidler Peter 2732 8 6 GM Mamedyarov Shakhriyar 2764 0.5-0.5 GM Radjabov Teimour 2726 7



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The first stage of Grand Prix Series 2014-2015 started in Baku



The long-awaited FIDE Grand Prix in Baku was officially opened on Wednesday evening at the Cultural Event Center. The tournament's opening ceremony was attended by chess officials, sponsors, national and international chess media.

From 2nd till 14of October over eleven rounds, the strongest players in the world will compete in the round robin tournament.

The opening ceremony started with a one-minute of silence to honor the memory of one of the leading chess players of Azerbaijan Vugar Hashimov. The ceremony proceeded with a short documentary, showing the development of chess in Azerbaijan.

Speakers at the event included the Minister of Youth and Sports of Azerbaijan Republic Azad Rahimov, President of Azerbaijan Chess Federation Elman Rustamov and FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.

Kirsan Ilyumzhinov reminded the guests of the long chess tradition in the Cultural Event Center, where the games will take place. “The building has historical importance as two USSR chess championships (1961 and 1972) were organized here. It was World Champion Boris Spassky who won the championship in 1961 and in 1972 Mikhail Tal became the USSR champion. I hope that one of the participants of the Baku Grand Prix will also become a world champion one day.”

FIDE President stressed the important role of the national leader Heydar Aliyev in the development of chess not only in Azerbaijan, but also in the former USSR. "The national leader Heydar Aliyev made a huge contribution to the development of chess not only in Azerbaijan but also in the USSR. If Heydar Aliyev did not notice and would not have supported small Garik Weinstein, then there would be no World Champion Garry Kasparov. Azerbaijan is the only country from 181, which has the state program for the development of chess. The President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev continues to develop this wise game.”



During the opening ceremony the director of the “Classic Jewelry House Lobortas” Igor Lobortas demonstrated the models of future Big and Small trophies to award the FIDE Grand Prix series 2014-2015 winner. The trophy consists of precious elements and stones of varying size, including silver, gold and diamonds.



Chief Arbiter Faik Gasanov then proceeded with drawing of lots. He called up the players to come to the table and choose the boxes with souvenirs with numbers inside.

During the drawing of lots the opening ceremony and the pairs of the first round are:

Dominguez - Kasimdzhanov
Tomashevsky - Grischuk
Karjakin - Caruana
Gelfand - Andreikin
Nakamura - Svidler
Mamedyarov - Radjabov

The announcement of the pair between two local heroes Mamedyarov-Radjabov was met with applause by guests of the ceremony.



Over the next two weeks Baku will be the main chess centre in the world, so please follow the games starting from 3 pm local time.

GM Emil Sutovsky and GM Evgeny Miroshnichenko will be official commentators during the whole event.

The third Grand Prix series 2014-2015 starts with the first stage in Baku (Azerbaijan). Back in 2008 it was also the capital of Azerbaijan which hosted the first ever Grand Prix stage and a great deal has changed since then as FIDE has organized 30 Grand Prix tournaments.
In contrast to the two previous Grand Prix cycles the number of tournaments was decreased from six to four to be held over two years (2014-2015). Each of 16 players of Grand Prix series will play in three tournaments out of four and all his results will be taken into account for the overall final standings of the Grand Prix. The winner and second placed player overall of the Grand Prix Series will qualify for the Candidates Tournament to be held in the last quarter of 2015 or the first half of 2016.

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World Junior Chess Championship 2014: Round 7

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Round 7: ANURAG MHAMAL SHOCKS SECOND SEED ROBIN VAN KAMPEN

In the most sensational result of the day Goa based Anurag Mhamal defeated second seed Robin Van Kampen of Netherland in the dying stages of the game. Battling in a minus position against the Sicilian defence, Anurag was delighted when Kampen in severe time trouble blundered and resigned on the 47th move when his bishop got trapped.


He is not a GM yet, nor does his Rating reflect his strength but S L Narayanan hailing from Kerala has undoubtedly been the most impressive Indian face in the LIC World Junior Chess Championship which has reached the halfway stage at Hotel Hyatt, Pune. In the seventh round Narayanan (2420) drew against GM Lu Shanglei (2533) of China and has logged highest points amongst the Indians in fray.

However Jorge Cori of Peru shot into sole lead with 6 points after defeating Mikhail Antipov of Russia while Lu, Narayanan, Wei Yi of China and Karen Grigoryan of Armenia are trailing in second place with 5.5 points each. In the Girls section Padmini Rout, Aleksandra Goryachkina and Daria Pustovoitova of Russia, Ann Chumpitaz of Peru and Anna Iwanow of Poland are jointly leading with 5.5 points each.

In the Girls section, the tough contest between overnight joint leaders Padmini and Daria of Russia ended with the honours shared after a hard fought 68 moves where Padmini was always on the troubled, defending side.’ It was a very tough game to defend and a mistake by my opponent helped in salvaging a draw” said Padmini.

Top seed and defending Champion Aleksandra Goryachkina defeated compatriot Mae Frayna Janelle to total 5.5 points. Ivana Maria Furtado of India defeated Monisha Gk and has scored 5 points.

The 13 round gruelling event is sponsored by LIC and Government of Maharashtra and Amanora, ONGC, Jain Irrigation and Everstone are the Associate sponsors. It was a setback as Sahaj Grover ended on the losing side against higher rated Karen Grigoryan of Armenia. Monday is a rest day for the event and the 8th round will be played on Tuesday.

The Queen’s Gambit Opening between Narayanan and Lu was a rather sedate affair where the Chinese did not waste any opportunity in exchanging pieces. By the 20th turn the game had already transposed into an ending with a light squared bishop, a rook and six pawns each. Thereafter it was an interesting duel in the ending where both players exhibited ambition of trying to probe for a win. However with both playing solidly, slowly the pawns and pieces were exchanged and a draw sealed on the 53rd move with just the Kings standing on board. Vidit Santosh Gujrathi, the highest rated player in fray had to settle for another draw against Irakli Beradze of Georgia and with just 4 points in his kitty needs to score heavily in the remaining rounds to be in contention for a medal.


India's Narayanan Sunilduth Lyna making a move aginst Lu Shanglei from China. The game ended in a draw.


Important Results of Open section (Indians unless specified)

Jorge Cori (Per)-6 Bt Mikhail Antiipov (Rus)-5; S L Narayanan-5.5 Lu Shanglei (Chn)-5.5; Grigoriy Oparin (Rus)-5 drew Vladimir Fedoseev (Rus)-5; Aryan Tari (Nor)-4.5 lost to Wei Yi (Chn)-5.5; Benjamin Bok (Ned)-5 bt Ulvi Bajarani (Aze)-5 ; Sahaj Grover-4.5 lost to Karen Grigoryan (Arm)-5.5; Vladislav Kovalev (Blr)-4.5 drew Bai Jinshi (Chn)-4.5; Anurag Mhamal-5 bt Robin Van Kampen (Ned)-4; Tadeas Kriebel (Cze)-5 bt Duda Jan Krzysztof (Pol)-4 ; Harsha Bharathkoti-4 lost to Diptayan Ghosh-5 ; Aravindh Chithambaram ​- 5 ​Ufuk Arat (Tur)

Girls Section

Padmini Rout-5.5 drew Daria Pustovoitova (Rus)-5.5; Aleksandra Goryachkina (Rus)-5.5 bt Mae Frayna Janelle (Rus)-4.5; Nandhshaa Pv-5 drew Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (Iri)-5; Ann Chumpitaz (Per)-5.5 bt Mo Zhai (Chn)-4.5; Anna Iwanow-5.5 bt (Pol) Sabina Ibrahimova (Aze)-4.5; Rucha Pujari-4.5 drew Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (Vie)-4.5; Marina Brunello (Ita)-5 bt Pratyusha Bodda-4; Srija SeshadriIrina-4.5 drew Petrukhina (Rus)-4.5; Maria Ivana Furtado-5 bt Monisha Gk-5.


Official tournament website



ROUND 1: VIDIT OFF TO A FLYING START

Vidit Santosh Gujrathi got off to a flying start by quickly winning the first round of the World Junior Chess Championship which commenced at Hotel Hyatt, Pune today. The long 13-round gruelling event sponsored by LIC kicked off with 137 players from 50 countries and 78 participants in the Girls Category. The co-sponsors for this event are Amanora, Everstone, Jain Irrigation, ONGC with a substantial financial assistance from Government of Maharashtra. Second seed Robin Van Kampen also quickly won his game against Jan Rindlisbacher of Switzerland with Black pieces in 28 moves after adopting the Sicilian Defence.

FM Rakesh Kumar Jena rated 2164 created a flutter when he held higher rated and 10th seed GM Grigoryan of Russia to a draw after 30 moves of a Sicilian Defence. Vidit the fourth seed was pitted against compatriot Ritviz Parab rated 71st with the Black pieces and opted for a super sharp – Sicilian defence against the King Pawn Opening. “I had decided to play aggressively and am happy that my gamble played off as I managed to get an advantageous position early on” beamed Vidit after the game. A tentative and timid pawn push in the centre on the 15th turn by Ritviz had Vidit immediately pushing his pawn more boldly in the centre to get advantage. Another wrong queen move on the next turn had Vidit smelling victory and his queen, rook and knight soon swung into action to decide the game in his favour after 23 moves.

Iranian player FM Amir Kousarania (2331) missed his flight and hence was not paired in the first round. He will begin his campaign from the second round.

In the Girls section WIM Zhao Mo of China defeated WFM San Diego Marie Antoinette.


Indian top seeded Vidit Gujrathi planning a move at the on-going World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune


Fedoseev Vladimir, the top seeded player from Russia  at the on-going World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune


Aleksandra Goryachkina from Russia, top ranking player in the girls category at the on-going World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

Official tournament website

At a glittering ceremony at Hotel Hyatt, attended by eminent dignitaries from the sporting, entertainment and corporate world, the World Junior Chess Championship (WJCC) 2014 was declared open in Pune. Mr S K Roy, Chairman, Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) inaugurated the event in the presence of Robert Zsifkovits - Official FIDE representative, Mr Ashok Jain, President, Maharashtra Chess Association (MCA), Mr Aniruddha Deshpande, Vice President, MCA and Chairman WJCC Organising Committee, Mr Jairaj Pathak, Former President, Maharashtra Chess Association. The tournament will be played from 6th October to 19th October and will be conducted in the Swiss League format, comprising of 13 rounds with one round scheduled each day.





















Vidit Gujrathi, Mr. Ashok Jain, President - MCA, Mr. Neeraj Agarwal, Executive Director - LIC of India, Justice Mahadevan, Mr. Aniruddha Deshpande, VP - MCA, Chairman - WJCC Organizing Committee, Mr. S. K Roy, Chairman - LIC of India, Bharat Singh Chauhan, CEO - AICF, Aleksandra Goryachkina, Mr. Jairaj Pathak, Former President MCA making the first move to mark the inauguration of World Junior Chess Championship 2014 in Pune

More than 135 players in the open category and over 75 girls from over 45 countries will battle it out for the coveted title of World Junior Champion and World Junior Girls Champion respectively and stake the sole qualifying slot in both sections for the forthcoming World Cup which is part of the World Championship Cycle. The winners would also take home cash prize of Rs 6,00,000 (Six Lakhs). As a special recognition, the best Indian performer in both the sections will be presented with the Pune Mayor’s trophy. Apart from the titles, there will be GM, IM, WGM and WIM norms at stake for players performing creditably to meet the technical requirements.

The Chief Guest of the function S K Roy, Chairman, LIC speaking on the occasion said, “I am thankful to Maharashtra Chess Association for inviting me to inaugurate this prestigious tournament. The game of chess has its origin in India and the country has produced many Champions who have won international accolades. I can see a future World Champion in each one of you and would like to wish every participant all the very best for this tournament. Life Insurance Corporation of India is proud to be associated with this championship and we would like to extend our wishes to the organizers of this tournament in making this event, a grand success.”

Mr Ashok Jain, said, “It is indeed a moment of great pride for me and my entire team to organize this Championship for the first time in Maharashtra. MCA has been carrying out various initiatives for the development of the game of chess in the State. We have initiated the novel Maharashtra Chess League (MCL), the first Chess League in the country which has been a big hit in both its editions. MCA has also introduced the ‘Chess In Schools’ (CIS), another initiative to introduce chess at the grass roots. Currently there are 186 schools with about 9500 students enrolled in the programme and the target is to reach out to 500 schools and about 50,000 students in the next couple of years. I am sure that these initiatives will go a long way in creating more and more awareness for the game of chess in the State and the country and assist in producing many more Champions. I wish you all luck and encourage you to play good quality and competitive chess.”

Addressing the gathering, Mr Aniruddha Deshpande, said, “I welcome all the dignitaries, officials, coaches and players to the city of Pune. Apart from academics, Pune has also become an important centre for major sporting activities in India and chess has a rich tradition and culture in our city. The city has produced many a champions and I am sure that this championship will provide an ideal platform for our players to interact and get exposed to global talent. I would like to thank the Government of Maharashtra and all our sponsors for their support to this tournament. Our entire team is highly elated and charged up at organizing this grand championship and would like to assure you that we will leave no stone unturned in making this championship truly memorable and a grand success.”

The WJCC-2014 is being jointly organized by the MCA and Pune District Chess Circle (PDCC) under the auspices of AICF (All India Chess Federation) and FIDE (Federation Internationale des Echecs, World Chess Federation). The organizing committee of WJCC-2014 comprises prominent chess players and key personalities of various Chess Associations namely Ashok Jain, Ravindra Dongre, Zone President of World Chess Federation (FIDE) and, Treasurer, AICF and, Chairman of MCA, Siddharth Mayur, Vice President of the PDCC, Niranjan Godbole, Secretary of PDCC, Chess Grand Master Abhijt Kunte, Prakash Kunte and Moreshwar Bhagwat.

World Youth U-16 Chess Olympiad 2014

News FIDE -



The Hungarian Chess Federation has always been making a point of popularizing this kind of sport and the well-known top Hungarian players have helped it much with their regular appearances in the media.

To back the U16 Chess Olympiad our Olympic players and our young talents offered their direct contribution to a short promo video clip. Besides Judit Polgar the best ever woman player of the world we can see Csaba Balogh who was the best scorer of our Silver medallist team earlier this year. 

Especially interesting is the appearance of two young talents beside them: Benjamin Gledura who was European Champion of his age group and Kata Karacsonyi who was the first to follow in the footsteps of Judit Polgar to win the National Championship topping all boys in their age groups.


The promo film of the Chess Olympiad is here




Official Tournament website

Baku Grand Prix: Round 8

News FIDE -



Round 8: Svidler defeats Dominguez, no changes on top

Peter Svidler defeated Leinier Dominguez while the other five games were drawn in the 8th round of the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku.

Fabiano Caruana and Boris Gelfand remain tied on the top with 5 points each and Svidler moved ahead to the shared third place.

Saturday 11th October is the second rest day.

Results and pairings are here, crosstable is here. Visit also the photo gallery and replay the games.



Kasimdzhanov - Caruana 1/2-1/2

Caruana defended with the Gruenfeld Indian and Kasimdzhanov countered with the Russian system. In a sharp but deeply explored a6-line the pieces were quickly going off in a forced variation.
In the resulting endgame white held a passed pawn within the queenside majority but this asset was firmly blocked by the black knight. White couldn't find anything better than repetition of moves.



Gelfand - Nakamura 1/2-1/2

Nakamura employed his trusted Dutch Leningrad defence. The early 12...b5 thrust allowed white a tactics with 14.Ne5, but he didn't follow through with the most complicated 15.Bb7.
Instead, the game move 15.Nd3 offered some prospects for a positional pressure. However, following the central break with 18.e4 and the long forced line the position simplified into a rook endgame. Black comfortably held the draw.
At the press conference Gelfand agreed that 15.Bb7 might have been a better try. He had hoped that the game continuation would grant him positional advantage but Nakamura found a great defending resource in 17...Rb8.



Karjakin - Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2

In the Meran Slav defence white achieved a minimal opening advantage after black was left with an isolated d5-pawn.
But in compensation all black pieces were actively placed and it was not easy to make progress.
With smart exchanges and patient positional build-up white got himself in position to increase the advantage.
However, with the terrible time trouble looming Karjakin decided to repeat the moves and take a draw. In the final position he was still better.



Tomashevsky - Radjabov 1/2-1/2

Evgeny Tomashevsky attempted to find an improvement for white over the game Parligras-Radjabov from the recent Chess Olympiad in Tromso.
He came up with 13.Neg5, hoping to, in his own words, "end the series of draws".
15.Nxf7 sacrifice and particularly the neat 19.c6 made white look good, but Radjabov's defence was marvelous and he forced the transition to opposite-coloured bishops ending that was immediately drawn.



Dominguez - Svidler 0-1

Dominguez's slow-paced Ruy Lopez with the two-step d4 inspired Svidler to come up with the new plan based on quick exchange on d4 and Bg4 pin.
White run into an early trouble after over-extending his pawn structure. The only hope to untangle was to give up a pawn and head for the double rook endgame.
It took some time to come up with the right plan, but Svidler masterfully converted the advantage into full point.



Grischuk - Andreikin 1/2-1/2

It was a regular Berlin Ruy Lopez where the queens are traded early on, followed by long maneuvering from both sides.
An endgame with rooks and opposite-coloured bishops was reached. Black gave up a pawn in order to simplify the structure.
White was trying to find a way to increase the advantage but the black pieces were well placed to cover the weaknesses and hold the advance of the passed f-pawn.
Grischuk finally conceded a draw on move 77.



Round 7: Caruana stopped, Gelfand joins in the lead


Fabiano Caruana's impressive run has been put to a halt in round 7 of the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku when he was defeated by the tail-ender Dmitry Andreikin. This was Caruana's first loss since the Chess Olympiad in Tromso.
Boris Gelfand joined the Italian on the shared first place with 4,5 points each after a draw against Rustam Kasimdzhanov.
Sergey Karjakin scored against Hikaru Nakamura, while the games Svidler - Grischuk, Mamedyarov - Tomashevsky and Radjabov - Dominguez were drawn.

Results and pairings are here, crosstable is here. Visit also the photo gallery and replay the games.



Svidler - Grischuk 1/2-1/2

In the Moscow Sicilian white retreated his bishop to d3, in a maneuver that became popular recently. Grischuk already faced this plan, in a blitz game last month against Karjakin, and was obviously well prepared.
11.e5 was novelty, but it allowed black to double white's f-pawns and anchor the knight on dominant central square.
White relied on a quick action against the black king, but black pieces were placed well and Svidler decided to take the perpetual check before it was too late.
After the game Gelfand approached Svidler and jokingly advised "you should develop all your pieces before embarking on such action".
Grischuk said he is currently reading "And Quiet Flows the Don", the 4-volume masterpiece of the Russian literature by Mikhail Sholokhov, adding that it is a very difficult book.



Mamedyarov - Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2

Against the Slav defence, Mamedyarov answered in "Catalan fashion", with 4.g3. He is not a stranger to this development, having already played it against Nakamura in Gashimov Memorial earlier this year.
Tomashevsky deviated from that game, seeking an early clarification in the center with 6...dxc4.
With the compromised pawn structures on the kingside, both players decided to castle long.
White tried to expand in the center and his three pawns were imposing, but at the same time fragile without the base support.
Black was in position to get something going with 30...Qb4, but he wanted to be safe and repeated the moves for a draw.



Radjabov - Dominguez 1/2-1/2

Another game with the topical 3.f3 against the Gruenfeld Indian defence. Dominguez challenged white's advantage in the center, while Radjabov responded by opening up the h-file.
Naturally, white castled long and tried to advance the passed d-pawn. Black was occupied with the opening of the powerful bishop's diagonal.
After the inferior 22.Nd5, black was able to transfer his rook to a4 and place the white king into danger. Radjabov then reacted properly and Dominguez could not find the decisive blow, instead settling for a draw with perpetual check.
Later at the press conference both players said that it was fun to play this game, with many exciting lines to be considered.



Nakamura - Karjakin 0-1

Nakamura, always enterprising in the opening, started the game with Veresov Attack. Karjakin, in his turn, played a novelty as early as on move 5...c4.
With the opposite castles on the board, black got better from the opening by snatching the stranded pawn on c5.
Nakamura tried to mount an attack against the enemy king, but to no avail, and black succeeded in trading the queens to reach better ending.
Karjakin's technique was impeccable and he delivered full point around the second time control.



Gelfand - Kasimdzhanov 1/2-1/2

It was a Queen's Gambit Declined where Gelfand performed his trademarked positional squeeze. White was always just slightly better and it was not easy for black to come up with counterplay.
Finally, Kasimdzhanov lost patience and traded down to the rook ending where white was still the more active side.
But black defended tenaciously and finally pulled a miraculous save to reach a theoretical draw in the rook vs pawn endgame.



Andreikin - Caruana 1-0

Caruana surprised his opponent and the entire internet audience by going for the Scandinavian defence.
White avoided the sharpest lines and preferred a positional build-up. In the transition between the opening and the middlegame something went wrong for black as he allowed his opponent to establish a passed pawn on d6.
Andreikin was inspired and never let the advantage go. He successfully reached an endgame with the extra pawn on the c-file.
Caruana fought valiantly but could not save the difficult position. He finally resigned on move 64.


Round 6: Fabiano Caruana surges ahead

Fabiano Caruana defeated Peter Svidler in the 6th round of FIDE Grand Prix in Baku to move into sole lead with 4,5 points. Yesterday's co-leader Boris Gelfand was held to a draw by Sergey Karjakin.
In the other decisive games Rustam Kasimdzhanov scored against Dmitry Andreikin, and the local chess fans are thrilled about Teimour Radjabov's first victory, against Alexander Grischuk.
Leinier Dominguez - Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Evgeny Tomashevsky - Hikaru Nakamura were drawn.

Results and pairings

Crosstable

Photo gallery


Replay the games



Caruana - Svidler 1-0

The clash between the two experts on Gruenfeld Indian defence saw a topical new line 3.f3 that come to prominence in the recent years.
The centralised black knight provoked white to get his central pawns rolling with 16.g4 and 17.f4. However, already the next move 18.e5 might have been a tad premature as black sacrificed the knight for three pawns and strong counterplay.
A sharp battle ensued, but black made a couple of inaccuracies that allowed the opponent to coordinate the forces and launch a fierce attack. With the trend definitely shifting into white's favour, Svidler resigned on move 33.



Kasimdzhanov - Andreikin 1-0

Andreikin employed the Philidor defence, but something went wrong in the early stages of the game as he was forced to weaken the queenside pawn structure.
After a series of neat positional maneuvers white was rewarded with a combination that won him an exchange and two pawns.
Black went all in trying to make something against the white king, but Kasimdzhanov duly refuted the attack and converted the advantage.



Grischuk - Radjabov 0-1

In the Fianchetto Gruenfeld Indian white had the pair of bishops but black easily equalised in a relatively closed position.
After 22...cxd5 black pawn structure was ultra-solid and it was not clear how either of the players could push for a win.
But Grischuk's hasty 25.f4, which irrevocably weakened the e3-pawn, coupled with the poor time management, definitely shifted the advantage to black side.
After the queens went off, white position was beyond salvation.



Tomashevsky - Nakamura 1/2-1/2

Another day with the Lasker Variation of the Queen's Gambit Declined, only this time Tomashevsky chose 9.Qc2 over Radjabov's 9.Rc1.
White attempted to slow down black's advance c7-c5, but Nakamura nevertheless pushed the pawn offering a temporary sacrifice.
As it happens so often in this opening, the queenside pawns were cleared off the table and heavy pieces got exchanged on the open files.
The resulting endgame offered no chances to play for a victory, but the players continued the game until moves were repeated around the first time control.



Dominguez - Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2


In the Closed Ruy Lopez black achieved a harmonic development and stood rather well. Doubling the white pawns on f3 on moves 18 or 19 deserved attention.
But Mamedyarov chose a different path and tried to undermine white's center.
On move 28 white avoided the trade of the queens, but probably missed that his Re1 is hanging in some lines. As a consequence, black was able to execute massive exchanges down to the equal rook endgame. Draw agreed on move 38.



Karjakin - Gelfand 1/2-1/2

It was a promising start - the Sicilian Naidorf with Fischer's 6.h3. But black avoided the sharp lines and preferred to force the exchange of the queens.
Gelfand enjoyed a slightly better pawn structure, but white knights dominated the central squares and there was no way through.
Draw was signed after the obligatory 30 moves when both players were already down to the last 5 minutes.



Round 5: All games drawn

Following the rest day, the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku continued with round 5 on Tuesday. In the longest game of the day Hikaru Namakura tried to convert the advantage of two pawns but Leinier Dominguez defended accurately and escaped with a tie.

With all games drawn, Boris Gelfand and Fabiano Caruana continue to lead the standings with 3.5 points each.

Results and pairings are here, crosstable is here.


See also the photo galleries




Mamedyarov - Grischuk 1/2-1/2

In one of the most interesting games of the day Grischuk defended with the Leningrad Dutch that soon turned into a wild affair with pieces hanging left and right.
Mamedyarov took the straightforward path of challenging the black structure with quick e2-e4. Black responded by snatching the c4-pawn.
White did have a strong compensation as black pieces were tied up, but a couple of "only-moves" helped Grischuk to survive the onslaught and trade the pieces down to an equal endgame.
Later Grischuk explained that he had analysed the position almost until the end. He was searching for winning attempts for white, but it turned out that black survives with precise sequence of moves.



Radjabov - Caruana 1/2-1/2

The top rated player of the tournament Fabiano Caruana defended with the Lasker variation of the Queen's Gambit Declined, which was famously featured in the decisive game of the Topalov-Anand World Championship Match in 2012.
In a typical fashion, white piled up his heavy pieces on the c-file to press black's exposed pawn structure.
But black had a simple solution to liquidate all the pawns on one side of the board. After the queens went off, it was obvious that the game will soon be drawn and the scoresheets were signed on move 34.



Svidler - Andreikin 1/2-1/2

After solving the problem with his laptop on the rest day, Peter Svidler faced a new challenge when Dmitry Andreikin opened with the French defence, which was a surprise for white.
Svidler never really posed any threats to his opponent, and after the exchange of the queens, it became clear that today Andreikin is having an easy ride.
Black castled long, doubled white's f-pawns and achieved certain activity. Before landing into inferior position, white decided to trade everything down to opposite-coloured bishops ending. Draw agreed on move 31.



Karjakin - Kasimdzhanov 1/2-1/2

Kasimdzhanov has been Karjakin's trainer for quite some time already and it was not easy for the young Russian to produce opening surprise. Eventually he went for Korchnoi's favourite 6.a3 in the English Opening.
Black responded with action in center and promptly conceded the bishops' pair in order to make a symmetrical pawn structure. 12...Ne4 marked the start of a nice maneuver which cleared the central files to black's favor.
Being in danger of simply ending up worse, white had to carefully navigate the waters around the anchored knight on d4.
Kasimdzhanov could not find a way to increase the advantage and finally retreated the knight to allow exchange of the queens. Draw was agreed after the obligatory 30th move.



Gelfand - Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2

This game saw a small bidding war in the opening - black angled for the Noteboom Semi-Slav, which white prevented by offering Meran Slav, until the pawn structure was finally shaped into Dutch Stonewall.
The small benefit for black was that with the pawn on e3 white dark-coloured bishop remained inside the pawn-chain.
After the regular developing moves, black pushed c6-c5 to challenge white's center. A couple of moves later he was the first to release the tension with dxc4.
White pressed on the backward e6-pawn and was able to win it, but black picked up solid counterplay in the process.
The resulting rook endgame was completely even and the players shook hands on move 31.



Nakamura - Dominguez 1/2-1/2

In response to Nakamura's English Opening the Cuban Grandmaster picked the reversed Botvinnik setup, but then immediately surprised the commentators with the slightly unusual 8...d5.
White answered with principled 12.b4 and was able to exert some pressure on the black position.
Black sacrificed a pawn in an attempt to clear the entire queenside, but then he realised that the planned 23...Ra1 is simply refuted with 24.Rxg7+.
23...Ra4 still looked to sufficient to win back the pawn, but Dominguez played 23...Bd4 instead. Nakamura replied with the strong 24.g4 which opened another battle-front to white's benefit.
Nakamura won the second pawn, but the timely 31...Re5 allowed black to create sufficient counterplay. Nakamura still tried to play for a win, but finally had to concede a draw before the second time control.


Round 4: Caruana joins Gelfand on top


In the only decisive game of the 4th round of FIDE Grand Prix in Baku, Italian star Fabiano Caruana defeated the local hero Shakhriyar Mamedyarov to catch the former world championship challenger Boris Gelfand on the shared first place.
The remaining five games were drawn. Gelfand and Caruana are on the top of the crosstable with 3 points each. Full standings here.



Caruana - Mamedyarov 1-0


The game started as a relatively quiet Slav Defence, but Mamedyarov didn't wait long to disturb the balance with the enterprising 8...g5.
GM Avrukh dubbed the move as "inferior" in his repertoire book, and it appears rightly so.
Black still had an option to stay solid and try to improve the pieces, but instead he started a premature attack with 14...g4. A cute maneuver Nc3-e2-f4 by white underlined the poor placement of the black pieces.
Mamedyarov went all in with an exchange sacrifice that gave him only temporary counterplay, but this was easily refuted by Caruana who sealed the victory on move 34.



Grischuk - Nakamura 1/2-1/2

Alexander Grischuk answered the King's Indian defence with Gligoric variation 8.Be3 and proceeded with the move "recommended by his friend" - 15.Rc1.
He was unhappy with the outcome of the opening as he ended in terribly passive position with the bishop locked away on h2.
Nakamura tried to increase the pressure but was unable to find anything concrete. Grischuk held the fort and finally achieved a draw after the time control.



Dominguez - Gelfand 1/2-1/2

Gelfand employed the trusted Sveshnikov Sicilian defence, which served him well in the World Championship against Anand in 2012.
Dominguez responded with a rare line that includes long castle - an unusual image in this opening.
Black didn't have any problems whatsoever and was able to push the thematic d5-break. His pieces sprang to activity and he quickly generated pressure against the white king.
Dominguez had to allow perpetual check before his position deteriorated further.



Tomashevsky - Karjakin 1/2-1/2

The two Russian players explored the topical Closed Catalan system where white quickly advances with the a-pawn.
Tomashevsky however spent a lot of time in the opening trying to remember the exact lines, and when the opportunity presented itself he missed the better continuation 21.Bd6.
After the game move 21.Rxa7 there were massive exchanges before the draw was signed on move 31.



Andreikin - Radjabov 1/2-1/2

The game started as King's Indian defence, then Radjabov offered transposition to Benoni, and the pawn structure finally reached the shape of the Accelerated Dragon.
By being allowed to push c4-c5 and open up the central files white achieved a small advantage.
White charged with his e-pawn to weaken the opponent's king shield, but Radjabov defended accurately and was able to trade off most of the pieces.
Andreikin probed the black's setup from all sides but just couldn't break through. After the time control white offered queens' exchange and a draw.



Kasimdzhanov - Svidler 1/2-1/2


The Uzbek Grandmaster revived the Ruy Lopez Exchange variation in the latest attempt to achieve an advantage with 1.e4.
The knight 4-step dance and the open a-file, combined with the central break, bore some fruit to white. Kasimdzhanov won a pawn and strongly pressed on the back rank.
In his turn, Svidler found a nice maneuver to shake off the white rook and slowly improve the pieces. White's advantage started decreasing as black gained counterplay.
With no winning plan in sight, white conceded a draw with moves repetition.


Official website

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Boris Gelfand leads after the 3rd round


Boris Gelfand outplayed Alexander Grischuk, who eventually lost on time in what should be already drawish position. After this game Israeli player solely leads in the tournament with 2,5 out of 3. In yet another decisive game of the round 3 Sergey Karjakin defeated Leinier Dominguez. Evgeny Tomashevsky didn't manage to break through Kasimdzhanov's defence, Fabiano Caruana missed good winning chances against Hikaru Nakamura. Two local heroes Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Teimour Radjabov drew with Russian players Dmitry Andreikin and Peter Svidler respectively.


Gelfand 1-0 Grischuk

Boris Gelfand managed to get an advantage after Grischuk played dubious plan with Na6. Nevertheless, It always looked like Black is about to equalize the position but Israeli player was finding different resources and putting some pressure on his opponent. It seemed Grischuk could not really avoid the following rook endgame with a pawn down, which basically had to be drawish. It's hard to say where exactly Grischuk went wrong but at certain point the position of White became clearly winning. Both players agreed on move 52.Rf3 being the easiest way to convert White's advantage. The move in the game (Rh5) was also strong but later on Grischuk got a chance after 57.Re8. After the last move in the game 60...Kg6 the worst for Black could have been over but for the first time in his life Alexander Grischuk, one of the best blitz players in the world and former World Champion in blitz, lost on time.


Karjakin 1-0 Dominguez

Karjakin's not really ambitious play in the opening didn't leave him any hope for the edge. “I used to play like this when I was already not that young”, commented GM Genna Sosonko on Karjakin's play at the early stage of the game. However, Russian player kept on making natural and logical moves and all of a sudden got very comfortable position with space advantage. According to Dominguez, he felt quite optimistic about his position after exchanging the queens but at the same time he could not explain the surprisingly low level of his play in the endgame. It looks like quite an easy game for Karjakin, who didn't do anything extraordinary but still defeated such a strong player as Dominguez.



Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2 Andreikin

Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, who is normally very dangerous with White, went for not the most ambitions line with 7.a3 this time and Black managed to solve opening problems quite easily. Perhaps, it would have been better for White to go for symmetrical position by playing 10.dхc5 because after 10.d5 if any of the sides could play for a win it was Black. Dmitry Andreikin could have put more pressure on his opponent in the endgame Bishop and Rook versus Knight and Rook but passed by some chances in the time trouble.


Nakamura 1/2 –1/2 Caruana

The same QGD line with Carlsbad structure which was played in the previous round between Svidler and Mamedyarov appeared in this game as well. Nakamura went for Botvinnik's move h4, which was used in the world championship match against Petrossian. It looked like Nakamura lost his track in the middle game and as he pointed out at the press conference he had to make long castling on 16th move.

American player continued to push forward, even though he had already got the feeling that his position is worse. He could have had regretted this if Caruana would find the right tactics 33...Nh3 and 34...b5. By playing 36...Ng2 Fabiano missed his last chance to play for a win. The way to keep his advantage was not so trivial but players found it at the press conference after the game. Eventually Nakamura saved the game. baku-round3-11



Radjabov 1/2-1/2 Svidler

It's hard to say what exactly Radjabov meant by playing this harmless line with White. There was no even slight hint to get any advantage and after Queens exchange the position became absolutely drawish.



Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2 Kasimdzhanov

Gruenfeld Defence with quite fashionable line with Bd2-Bc3 happened in the game. After massive exchanges and transformations players ended up in the endgame with rooks and queens. It was a very similar scenario to what Tomashevsky had at the previous day in the game against Dominguez. He was a defending side yesterday but today it was his turn to play the position without any risk. It turned out to be tough to break through because of good defence of Rustam Kasimdzhanov and the game finished in a draw.

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Round 2: Four players take early lead in Baku

Hikaru Nakamura, Peter Svidler, Fabiano Caruana and Boris Gelfand are on shared first place after the second round of the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku. Hikaru Nakamura outplayed Dmitry Andreikin, who suffers a second consecutive loss. Shakhriyar Mamedyarov fell into the trap in the time trouble and lost against Peter Svidler. Fabiano Caruana and Boris Gelfand continued theoretical discussion in a Najdorf and right before the first time control the game ended up in perpetual check. Rustam Kasimdzhanov tried to break though Radjabov's Berlin Defence but was held to a draw by Teimour.

It was also a round of missed opportunities as Alexander Grischuk and Leinier Dominguez managed to get winning positions but in both cases their opponents Sergey Karjakin and Evegeny Tomashevsky escaped with draws.


Grischuk 1/2-1/2 Karjakin

Alexander Grischuk chose a very rare line with 5.Nd2 and made his opponent Sergey Karjakin to play without any preparation from the early stage. Nevertheless Karjakin managed to get comfortable position out of the opening. The game was roughly balanced until both players got into the time trouble and things started to sharpen up. After 30...gf 31. Rf5 it became clear that Black's King is in danger. Grischuk passed by the chance to win on a spot after extravagant tactical blow Bf8! However, the move in the text was good enough to secure an advantage for White. By playing 35.Nb5 Grischuk could have brought the last piece into the attack but in the time trouble he thought the move 35.Nf6 was also good enough. Right after the time trouble it turned out that Black had enough resources to save the game.


Svidler 1-0 Mamedyarov

Black was fine after the opening but then White had a slight advantage, which according to Svidler, probably was still not enough to begin with. There was a period when White was much better but Peter made a couple of inaccurate moves which lead to an equal position. Draw seemed to be the most logical result at this point but as Peter Svidler put it during his visit to commentary room “perhaps Shakhriyar could not readjust himself to a new landscape of the game”. After 31.Bd6, apparently missed by Mamedyarov, Black's position collapsed.


Caruana 1/2-1/2 Gelfand

Theoretical dispute in Najdorf, started in January 2014 in Wijk an Zee between same players, continued today but this time Caruana chose 13.Na5 instead of 13.0-0, which brought him success in the previous game. Boris Gelfand was ready for a new line thanks to his second Alexander Huzman, who showed him exchange sacrifice before the game. After that the position became unbalanced and complex and both side had to take responsible decisions on every move. According to Boris, he missed White's move 31.c5 and simply panicked after that. Even though 32...Re8 was not the best choice but it allowed Black to finish the game with the spectacular perpetual check after Caruana's reply 33.h4. After 33.Kh1 Black would have to face serious trouble.


Kasimdzhanov 1/2-1/2 Radjabov

Berlin Defence is a newly added opening in Radjabov's repertoire. Both sides were showing usual plans until the certain point. Absolutely amazing 20.Nd8, demonstrated by Rustam, is not a move one sees every day! “It's a very pleasant move to make but I would be happier if this move would bring the victory”, pointed out former World Champion at the press conference. Even though Teimour was surprised to see Nd8, he found the precise way to equalize the position and made a confident draw in the rook endgame.


Dominguez 1/2-1/2 Tomashevsky

The longest game of the second round which lasted more than 7 hours and finished on move 100. Black managed to equalize in the opening but despite weaknesses in pawns structure Black's position remained also solid in the endgame. According to Evgeny, he could have made his life easier today by playing more precisely in the critical moment but after few mistakes had to defend a very unpleasant position instead. Cuban player missed a few good chances to win and the game eventually finished in a draw.


Andreikin 0-1 Nakamura

Dmitry Andeikin didn't choose the most principle lines against a Dutch Defence but went for quite rare plan with c3 and Qb3. 20 Nf3 was dubious decision after which the tables started to turn in Black's favor. Hikaru concentrated his pieces on the King's side and all of a sudden Black's position became very active. White's position fell apart after crucial mistake 31. Nf4.

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Round 1: Caruana and Gelfand first winners in Grand Prix in Baku


The FIDE Grand Prix in Baku started on Thursday, 1st of October, with two decisive games and four draws. Two local heroes Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Teymour Radjabov drew rather quickly and went to celebrate the 20th anniversary since their first ever game between each other has been played. Fabiano Caruana defeated Sergey Karjakin, who blundered material in the time trouble. Boris Gelfand quickly obtained a clear advantage after unsuccessful opening play from Dmitry Andreikin and eventually won the game. Leinier Dominguez missed a great chance to get decisive material advantage against Rustam Kasimdzhanov and after few more moves the game ended up in draw. Russian players Evgeny Tomashevsky and Alexander Grischuk drew a Gruenfeld that was always more or less balanced. Peter Svidler split a point with Hikaru Nakamura.


Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2 Radjabov


As it was revealed during the press conference the first game between little Teymur and Shakhriyah has been played 20 years ago in the national youth championship. None of them could have imagined that after so many years they would be both representing their country on the highest level. The opening choice already showed not the most aggressive mood of Shakhriyar. The only moment White could have continued the fight was after 14. Nce2. Nevertheless, the force line shows very good compensation for Black sacrificed material. The move in the game led to the massive exchanges and the game eventually finished in a draw as well the game played 20 years ago.


Nakamura 1/2-1/2 Svidler

According to Nakamura, he spent few hours before the game watching Svidler's videos on Gruenfeld Defence but at the last moment he decided to go for 1.e4. Ruy Lopez with early d3 appeared on the board and it turned out Peter was aware of this line and got comfortable position with Black. Both players agreed on 15.cd being not the most precise choice which leaded to quite unpleasant position for White. Hikaru felt the right moment to switch into defensive mode and managed to equalize. However, more pressure could have been put by Peter Svidler after 27...Nb6.


Karjakin 0-1 Caruana

In the opening stage players were competing in attempts to surprise each other. It's not often you can see 1.Nf3 from Sergey Karjakin as well as Queen's Gambit Declined is not the first choice of Caruana. In Carlsbad structure Sergey managed to add marginal edge by playing unusual 12.Ne2 which Caruana declared to be a novelty. Till some point the game developed logically. White passed an interesting attempt to play 22.h4 forcing Black to go for 22...g4 23.Be4 de 24.Nd2 minimizing Black's counter play and preparing a minority attack on the King's side. Despite exciting transformations the game had been balanced until 35. a4. Around move 30 Karjakin failed into an unusual trap. He went to the player's room and was monitoring the game from the TV screen. Because of technical problem with live transmission Sergey Karjakin thought his opponent was still thinking on his move and so he missed 10 priceless minutes which cost him dearly in the time trouble.


Gelfand 1-0 Andreikin

Andreikin went for a fashionable line of Queens Indian possibly basing his preparation on the game Gelfand-Gashimov. It turned out that Boris has something up his sleeve as he had closely analyzed this position 2 years ago. The opening battle finished in favor of Gelfand, who sacrificed a pawn but got a very dangerous initiative. Boris was doing practical and logical moves increasing the pressure and tried to play “without burning the bridges”. Perhaps, Black could have put tougher resistance but it 's hard to believe it would have changed the outcome of the game.


Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2 Grischuk

According to Grischuk, both of the players were definitely analyzing this variation in Gruenfeld and the following endgame at home. “ I was trying to remember all variations, that's why I spent so much time during the game”, said Alexander. After 17. Qd3 Black has to be precise to equalize and after spending some time Grischuk managed to remember the right way.


Dominguez 1/2-1/2 Kasimdzhanov

Leinier decided to avoid theoretical lines in order to postpone a fight for the middle game stage. But as both players pointed out, surprisingly it took them too long to go into the middle game and as a result both of them had 1 hour in total after 12 moves. After 17...Qa6 it seemed Black has got initiative but Dominguez managed to create counter play. In the time trouble Leiner was granted a sudden chance after Rustam's careless 25...Rc8 but Cuban player passed by a relatively easy tactical trick 26.Ne7, which would win the game on a spot. Leiner realized his mistake right after his move and no wonder that the players decided not to tempt fate and agreed for a draw few moves later.

SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1 GM Dominguez Perez Leinier 2751 0.5-0.5 GM Kasimdzhanov Rustam 2706 12 2 GM Tomashevsky Evgeny 2701 0.5-0.5 GM Grischuk Alexander 2797 11 3 GM Karjakin Sergey 2767 0-1 GM Caruana Fabiano 2844 10 4 GM Gelfand Boris 2748 1-0 GM Andreikin Dmitry 2722 9 5 GM Nakamura Hikaru 2764 0.5-0.5 GM Svidler Peter 2732 8 6 GM Mamedyarov Shakhriyar 2764 0.5-0.5 GM Radjabov Teimour 2726 7



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The first stage of Grand Prix Series 2014-2015 started in Baku



The long-awaited FIDE Grand Prix in Baku was officially opened on Wednesday evening at the Cultural Event Center. The tournament's opening ceremony was attended by chess officials, sponsors, national and international chess media.

From 2nd till 14of October over eleven rounds, the strongest players in the world will compete in the round robin tournament.

The opening ceremony started with a one-minute of silence to honor the memory of one of the leading chess players of Azerbaijan Vugar Hashimov. The ceremony proceeded with a short documentary, showing the development of chess in Azerbaijan.

Speakers at the event included the Minister of Youth and Sports of Azerbaijan Republic Azad Rahimov, President of Azerbaijan Chess Federation Elman Rustamov and FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.

Kirsan Ilyumzhinov reminded the guests of the long chess tradition in the Cultural Event Center, where the games will take place. “The building has historical importance as two USSR chess championships (1961 and 1972) were organized here. It was World Champion Boris Spassky who won the championship in 1961 and in 1972 Mikhail Tal became the USSR champion. I hope that one of the participants of the Baku Grand Prix will also become a world champion one day.”

FIDE President stressed the important role of the national leader Heydar Aliyev in the development of chess not only in Azerbaijan, but also in the former USSR. "The national leader Heydar Aliyev made a huge contribution to the development of chess not only in Azerbaijan but also in the USSR. If Heydar Aliyev did not notice and would not have supported small Garik Weinstein, then there would be no World Champion Garry Kasparov. Azerbaijan is the only country from 181, which has the state program for the development of chess. The President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev continues to develop this wise game.”



During the opening ceremony the director of the “Classic Jewelry House Lobortas” Igor Lobortas demonstrated the models of future Big and Small trophies to award the FIDE Grand Prix series 2014-2015 winner. The trophy consists of precious elements and stones of varying size, including silver, gold and diamonds.



Chief Arbiter Faik Gasanov then proceeded with drawing of lots. He called up the players to come to the table and choose the boxes with souvenirs with numbers inside.

During the drawing of lots the opening ceremony and the pairs of the first round are:

Dominguez - Kasimdzhanov
Tomashevsky - Grischuk
Karjakin - Caruana
Gelfand - Andreikin
Nakamura - Svidler
Mamedyarov - Radjabov

The announcement of the pair between two local heroes Mamedyarov-Radjabov was met with applause by guests of the ceremony.



Over the next two weeks Baku will be the main chess centre in the world, so please follow the games starting from 3 pm local time.

GM Emil Sutovsky and GM Evgeny Miroshnichenko will be official commentators during the whole event.

The third Grand Prix series 2014-2015 starts with the first stage in Baku (Azerbaijan). Back in 2008 it was also the capital of Azerbaijan which hosted the first ever Grand Prix stage and a great deal has changed since then as FIDE has organized 30 Grand Prix tournaments.
In contrast to the two previous Grand Prix cycles the number of tournaments was decreased from six to four to be held over two years (2014-2015). Each of 16 players of Grand Prix series will play in three tournaments out of four and all his results will be taken into account for the overall final standings of the Grand Prix. The winner and second placed player overall of the Grand Prix Series will qualify for the Candidates Tournament to be held in the last quarter of 2015 or the first half of 2016.

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FIDE President at the International Sports Forum

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On October 9th, the FIDE President arrived to Cheboksary, the capital city of Chuvash Republic, Russia, where he participated in the 5th International Sports Forum “Russia – country of Sports”. During the forum Kirsan Ilyumzhinov met with the President of Russia Vladimir Putin. Russian President congratulated Kirsan Ilyumzhinov on winning the FIDE Presidential elections recently held in Norwegian city of Tromso and asked the FIDE President to inform on the preparations for the World Chess Championship Match, scheduled to be held in Sochi (Krasnodar Krai) from 7th to 28th of November. The FIDE President told about the main activities of FIDE, in particular the Chess in Schools programme. Vladimir Putin expressed his support for children’s chess and noted that this noble game is returning its popularity. Russian President thanked Mr. Alexander Tkachyov, Governor of Krasnodar Krai, for his decision to support the hosting of the World chess Championship Match. Kirsan Ilyumzhinov informed that the Presidential Board will be held during the Match and all World Chess Champions are invited to Sochi. At the meeting also present were Mr. Arkady Dvorkovich, Deputy Prime Minister of Russia, Chairman of the WCCM Organizing Committee, Mr. Dmitry Peskov, Press Secretary of the Russian President, Head of the Russian Chess Federation’s Board of Trustees, Mr. Igor Levitin, Aide to the President of Russia, Deputy President of the Russian Olympic Committee. During the forum, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov also had talks with the United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Adviser on Sport for Development and Peace Mr. Wilfried Lemke on possible bilateral cooperation.





Baku Grand Prix: Round 7

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Round 7: Caruana stopped, Gelfand joins in the lead


Fabiano Caruana's impressive run has been put to a halt in round 7 of the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku when he was defeated by the tail-ender Dmitry Andreikin. This was Caruana's first loss since the Chess Olympiad in Tromso.
Boris Gelfand joined the Italian on the shared first place with 4,5 points each after a draw against Rustam Kasimdzhanov.
Sergey Karjakin scored against Hikaru Nakamura, while the games Svidler - Grischuk, Mamedyarov - Tomashevsky and Radjabov - Dominguez were drawn.

Results and pairings are here, crosstable is here. Visit also the photo gallery and replay the games.



Svidler - Grischuk 1/2-1/2

In the Moscow Sicilian white retreated his bishop to d3, in a maneuver that became popular recently. Grischuk already faced this plan, in a blitz game last month against Karjakin, and was obviously well prepared.
11.e5 was novelty, but it allowed black to double white's f-pawns and anchor the knight on dominant central square.
White relied on a quick action against the black king, but black pieces were placed well and Svidler decided to take the perpetual check before it was too late.
After the game Gelfand approached Svidler and jokingly advised "you should develop all your pieces before embarking on such action".
Grischuk said he is currently reading "And Quiet Flows the Don", the 4-volume masterpiece of the Russian literature by Mikhail Sholokhov, adding that it is a very difficult book.



Mamedyarov - Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2

Against the Slav defence, Mamedyarov answered in "Catalan fashion", with 4.g3. He is not a stranger to this development, having already played it against Nakamura in Gashimov Memorial earlier this year.
Tomashevsky deviated from that game, seeking an early clarification in the center with 6...dxc4.
With the compromised pawn structures on the kingside, both players decided to castle long.
White tried to expand in the center and his three pawns were imposing, but at the same time fragile without the base support.
Black was in position to get something going with 30...Qb4, but he wanted to be safe and repeated the moves for a draw.



Radjabov - Dominguez 1/2-1/2

Another game with the topical 3.f3 against the Gruenfeld Indian defence. Dominguez challenged white's advantage in the center, while Radjabov responded by opening up the h-file.
Naturally, white castled long and tried to advance the passed d-pawn. Black was occupied with the opening of the powerful bishop's diagonal.
After the inferior 22.Nd5, black was able to transfer his rook to a4 and place the white king into danger. Radjabov then reacted properly and Dominguez could not find the decisive blow, instead settling for a draw with perpetual check.
Later at the press conference both players said that it was fun to play this game, with many exciting lines to be considered.



Nakamura - Karjakin 0-1

Nakamura, always enterprising in the opening, started the game with Veresov Attack. Karjakin, in his turn, played a novelty as early as on move 5...c4.
With the opposite castles on the board, black got better from the opening by snatching the stranded pawn on c5.
Nakamura tried to mount an attack against the enemy king, but to no avail, and black succeeded in trading the queens to reach better ending.
Karjakin's technique was impeccable and he delivered full point around the second time control.



Gelfand - Kasimdzhanov 1/2-1/2

It was a Queen's Gambit Declined where Gelfand performed his trademarked positional squeeze. White was always just slightly better and it was not easy for black to come up with counterplay.
Finally, Kasimdzhanov lost patience and traded down to the rook ending where white was still the more active side.
But black defended tenaciously and finally pulled a miraculous save to reach a theoretical draw in the rook vs pawn endgame.



Andreikin - Caruana 1-0

Caruana surprised his opponent and the entire internet audience by going for the Scandinavian defence.
White avoided the sharpest lines and preferred a positional build-up. In the transition between the opening and the middlegame something went wrong for black as he allowed his opponent to establish a passed pawn on d6.
Andreikin was inspired and never let the advantage go. He successfully reached an endgame with the extra pawn on the c-file.
Caruana fought valiantly but could not save the difficult position. He finally resigned on move 64.


Round 6: Fabiano Caruana surges ahead

Fabiano Caruana defeated Peter Svidler in the 6th round of FIDE Grand Prix in Baku to move into sole lead with 4,5 points. Yesterday's co-leader Boris Gelfand was held to a draw by Sergey Karjakin.
In the other decisive games Rustam Kasimdzhanov scored against Dmitry Andreikin, and the local chess fans are thrilled about Teimour Radjabov's first victory, against Alexander Grischuk.
Leinier Dominguez - Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Evgeny Tomashevsky - Hikaru Nakamura were drawn.

Results and pairings

Crosstable

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Replay the games



Caruana - Svidler 1-0

The clash between the two experts on Gruenfeld Indian defence saw a topical new line 3.f3 that come to prominence in the recent years.
The centralised black knight provoked white to get his central pawns rolling with 16.g4 and 17.f4. However, already the next move 18.e5 might have been a tad premature as black sacrificed the knight for three pawns and strong counterplay.
A sharp battle ensued, but black made a couple of inaccuracies that allowed the opponent to coordinate the forces and launch a fierce attack. With the trend definitely shifting into white's favour, Svidler resigned on move 33.



Kasimdzhanov - Andreikin 1-0

Andreikin employed the Philidor defence, but something went wrong in the early stages of the game as he was forced to weaken the queenside pawn structure.
After a series of neat positional maneuvers white was rewarded with a combination that won him an exchange and two pawns.
Black went all in trying to make something against the white king, but Kasimdzhanov duly refuted the attack and converted the advantage.



Grischuk - Radjabov 0-1

In the Fianchetto Gruenfeld Indian white had the pair of bishops but black easily equalised in a relatively closed position.
After 22...cxd5 black pawn structure was ultra-solid and it was not clear how either of the players could push for a win.
But Grischuk's hasty 25.f4, which irrevocably weakened the e3-pawn, coupled with the poor time management, definitely shifted the advantage to black side.
After the queens went off, white position was beyond salvation.



Tomashevsky - Nakamura 1/2-1/2

Another day with the Lasker Variation of the Queen's Gambit Declined, only this time Tomashevsky chose 9.Qc2 over Radjabov's 9.Rc1.
White attempted to slow down black's advance c7-c5, but Nakamura nevertheless pushed the pawn offering a temporary sacrifice.
As it happens so often in this opening, the queenside pawns were cleared off the table and heavy pieces got exchanged on the open files.
The resulting endgame offered no chances to play for a victory, but the players continued the game until moves were repeated around the first time control.



Dominguez - Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2


In the Closed Ruy Lopez black achieved a harmonic development and stood rather well. Doubling the white pawns on f3 on moves 18 or 19 deserved attention.
But Mamedyarov chose a different path and tried to undermine white's center.
On move 28 white avoided the trade of the queens, but probably missed that his Re1 is hanging in some lines. As a consequence, black was able to execute massive exchanges down to the equal rook endgame. Draw agreed on move 38.



Karjakin - Gelfand 1/2-1/2

It was a promising start - the Sicilian Naidorf with Fischer's 6.h3. But black avoided the sharp lines and preferred to force the exchange of the queens.
Gelfand enjoyed a slightly better pawn structure, but white knights dominated the central squares and there was no way through.
Draw was signed after the obligatory 30 moves when both players were already down to the last 5 minutes.



Round 5: All games drawn

Following the rest day, the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku continued with round 5 on Tuesday. In the longest game of the day Hikaru Namakura tried to convert the advantage of two pawns but Leinier Dominguez defended accurately and escaped with a tie.

With all games drawn, Boris Gelfand and Fabiano Caruana continue to lead the standings with 3.5 points each.

Results and pairings are here, crosstable is here.


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Mamedyarov - Grischuk 1/2-1/2

In one of the most interesting games of the day Grischuk defended with the Leningrad Dutch that soon turned into a wild affair with pieces hanging left and right.
Mamedyarov took the straightforward path of challenging the black structure with quick e2-e4. Black responded by snatching the c4-pawn.
White did have a strong compensation as black pieces were tied up, but a couple of "only-moves" helped Grischuk to survive the onslaught and trade the pieces down to an equal endgame.
Later Grischuk explained that he had analysed the position almost until the end. He was searching for winning attempts for white, but it turned out that black survives with precise sequence of moves.



Radjabov - Caruana 1/2-1/2

The top rated player of the tournament Fabiano Caruana defended with the Lasker variation of the Queen's Gambit Declined, which was famously featured in the decisive game of the Topalov-Anand World Championship Match in 2012.
In a typical fashion, white piled up his heavy pieces on the c-file to press black's exposed pawn structure.
But black had a simple solution to liquidate all the pawns on one side of the board. After the queens went off, it was obvious that the game will soon be drawn and the scoresheets were signed on move 34.



Svidler - Andreikin 1/2-1/2

After solving the problem with his laptop on the rest day, Peter Svidler faced a new challenge when Dmitry Andreikin opened with the French defence, which was a surprise for white.
Svidler never really posed any threats to his opponent, and after the exchange of the queens, it became clear that today Andreikin is having an easy ride.
Black castled long, doubled white's f-pawns and achieved certain activity. Before landing into inferior position, white decided to trade everything down to opposite-coloured bishops ending. Draw agreed on move 31.



Karjakin - Kasimdzhanov 1/2-1/2

Kasimdzhanov has been Karjakin's trainer for quite some time already and it was not easy for the young Russian to produce opening surprise. Eventually he went for Korchnoi's favourite 6.a3 in the English Opening.
Black responded with action in center and promptly conceded the bishops' pair in order to make a symmetrical pawn structure. 12...Ne4 marked the start of a nice maneuver which cleared the central files to black's favor.
Being in danger of simply ending up worse, white had to carefully navigate the waters around the anchored knight on d4.
Kasimdzhanov could not find a way to increase the advantage and finally retreated the knight to allow exchange of the queens. Draw was agreed after the obligatory 30th move.



Gelfand - Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2

This game saw a small bidding war in the opening - black angled for the Noteboom Semi-Slav, which white prevented by offering Meran Slav, until the pawn structure was finally shaped into Dutch Stonewall.
The small benefit for black was that with the pawn on e3 white dark-coloured bishop remained inside the pawn-chain.
After the regular developing moves, black pushed c6-c5 to challenge white's center. A couple of moves later he was the first to release the tension with dxc4.
White pressed on the backward e6-pawn and was able to win it, but black picked up solid counterplay in the process.
The resulting rook endgame was completely even and the players shook hands on move 31.



Nakamura - Dominguez 1/2-1/2

In response to Nakamura's English Opening the Cuban Grandmaster picked the reversed Botvinnik setup, but then immediately surprised the commentators with the slightly unusual 8...d5.
White answered with principled 12.b4 and was able to exert some pressure on the black position.
Black sacrificed a pawn in an attempt to clear the entire queenside, but then he realised that the planned 23...Ra1 is simply refuted with 24.Rxg7+.
23...Ra4 still looked to sufficient to win back the pawn, but Dominguez played 23...Bd4 instead. Nakamura replied with the strong 24.g4 which opened another battle-front to white's benefit.
Nakamura won the second pawn, but the timely 31...Re5 allowed black to create sufficient counterplay. Nakamura still tried to play for a win, but finally had to concede a draw before the second time control.


Round 4: Caruana joins Gelfand on top


In the only decisive game of the 4th round of FIDE Grand Prix in Baku, Italian star Fabiano Caruana defeated the local hero Shakhriyar Mamedyarov to catch the former world championship challenger Boris Gelfand on the shared first place.
The remaining five games were drawn. Gelfand and Caruana are on the top of the crosstable with 3 points each. Full standings here.



Caruana - Mamedyarov 1-0


The game started as a relatively quiet Slav Defence, but Mamedyarov didn't wait long to disturb the balance with the enterprising 8...g5.
GM Avrukh dubbed the move as "inferior" in his repertoire book, and it appears rightly so.
Black still had an option to stay solid and try to improve the pieces, but instead he started a premature attack with 14...g4. A cute maneuver Nc3-e2-f4 by white underlined the poor placement of the black pieces.
Mamedyarov went all in with an exchange sacrifice that gave him only temporary counterplay, but this was easily refuted by Caruana who sealed the victory on move 34.



Grischuk - Nakamura 1/2-1/2

Alexander Grischuk answered the King's Indian defence with Gligoric variation 8.Be3 and proceeded with the move "recommended by his friend" - 15.Rc1.
He was unhappy with the outcome of the opening as he ended in terribly passive position with the bishop locked away on h2.
Nakamura tried to increase the pressure but was unable to find anything concrete. Grischuk held the fort and finally achieved a draw after the time control.



Dominguez - Gelfand 1/2-1/2

Gelfand employed the trusted Sveshnikov Sicilian defence, which served him well in the World Championship against Anand in 2012.
Dominguez responded with a rare line that includes long castle - an unusual image in this opening.
Black didn't have any problems whatsoever and was able to push the thematic d5-break. His pieces sprang to activity and he quickly generated pressure against the white king.
Dominguez had to allow perpetual check before his position deteriorated further.



Tomashevsky - Karjakin 1/2-1/2

The two Russian players explored the topical Closed Catalan system where white quickly advances with the a-pawn.
Tomashevsky however spent a lot of time in the opening trying to remember the exact lines, and when the opportunity presented itself he missed the better continuation 21.Bd6.
After the game move 21.Rxa7 there were massive exchanges before the draw was signed on move 31.



Andreikin - Radjabov 1/2-1/2

The game started as King's Indian defence, then Radjabov offered transposition to Benoni, and the pawn structure finally reached the shape of the Accelerated Dragon.
By being allowed to push c4-c5 and open up the central files white achieved a small advantage.
White charged with his e-pawn to weaken the opponent's king shield, but Radjabov defended accurately and was able to trade off most of the pieces.
Andreikin probed the black's setup from all sides but just couldn't break through. After the time control white offered queens' exchange and a draw.



Kasimdzhanov - Svidler 1/2-1/2


The Uzbek Grandmaster revived the Ruy Lopez Exchange variation in the latest attempt to achieve an advantage with 1.e4.
The knight 4-step dance and the open a-file, combined with the central break, bore some fruit to white. Kasimdzhanov won a pawn and strongly pressed on the back rank.
In his turn, Svidler found a nice maneuver to shake off the white rook and slowly improve the pieces. White's advantage started decreasing as black gained counterplay.
With no winning plan in sight, white conceded a draw with moves repetition.


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Boris Gelfand leads after the 3rd round


Boris Gelfand outplayed Alexander Grischuk, who eventually lost on time in what should be already drawish position. After this game Israeli player solely leads in the tournament with 2,5 out of 3. In yet another decisive game of the round 3 Sergey Karjakin defeated Leinier Dominguez. Evgeny Tomashevsky didn't manage to break through Kasimdzhanov's defence, Fabiano Caruana missed good winning chances against Hikaru Nakamura. Two local heroes Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Teimour Radjabov drew with Russian players Dmitry Andreikin and Peter Svidler respectively.


Gelfand 1-0 Grischuk

Boris Gelfand managed to get an advantage after Grischuk played dubious plan with Na6. Nevertheless, It always looked like Black is about to equalize the position but Israeli player was finding different resources and putting some pressure on his opponent. It seemed Grischuk could not really avoid the following rook endgame with a pawn down, which basically had to be drawish. It's hard to say where exactly Grischuk went wrong but at certain point the position of White became clearly winning. Both players agreed on move 52.Rf3 being the easiest way to convert White's advantage. The move in the game (Rh5) was also strong but later on Grischuk got a chance after 57.Re8. After the last move in the game 60...Kg6 the worst for Black could have been over but for the first time in his life Alexander Grischuk, one of the best blitz players in the world and former World Champion in blitz, lost on time.


Karjakin 1-0 Dominguez

Karjakin's not really ambitious play in the opening didn't leave him any hope for the edge. “I used to play like this when I was already not that young”, commented GM Genna Sosonko on Karjakin's play at the early stage of the game. However, Russian player kept on making natural and logical moves and all of a sudden got very comfortable position with space advantage. According to Dominguez, he felt quite optimistic about his position after exchanging the queens but at the same time he could not explain the surprisingly low level of his play in the endgame. It looks like quite an easy game for Karjakin, who didn't do anything extraordinary but still defeated such a strong player as Dominguez.



Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2 Andreikin

Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, who is normally very dangerous with White, went for not the most ambitions line with 7.a3 this time and Black managed to solve opening problems quite easily. Perhaps, it would have been better for White to go for symmetrical position by playing 10.dхc5 because after 10.d5 if any of the sides could play for a win it was Black. Dmitry Andreikin could have put more pressure on his opponent in the endgame Bishop and Rook versus Knight and Rook but passed by some chances in the time trouble.


Nakamura 1/2 –1/2 Caruana

The same QGD line with Carlsbad structure which was played in the previous round between Svidler and Mamedyarov appeared in this game as well. Nakamura went for Botvinnik's move h4, which was used in the world championship match against Petrossian. It looked like Nakamura lost his track in the middle game and as he pointed out at the press conference he had to make long castling on 16th move.

American player continued to push forward, even though he had already got the feeling that his position is worse. He could have had regretted this if Caruana would find the right tactics 33...Nh3 and 34...b5. By playing 36...Ng2 Fabiano missed his last chance to play for a win. The way to keep his advantage was not so trivial but players found it at the press conference after the game. Eventually Nakamura saved the game. baku-round3-11



Radjabov 1/2-1/2 Svidler

It's hard to say what exactly Radjabov meant by playing this harmless line with White. There was no even slight hint to get any advantage and after Queens exchange the position became absolutely drawish.



Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2 Kasimdzhanov

Gruenfeld Defence with quite fashionable line with Bd2-Bc3 happened in the game. After massive exchanges and transformations players ended up in the endgame with rooks and queens. It was a very similar scenario to what Tomashevsky had at the previous day in the game against Dominguez. He was a defending side yesterday but today it was his turn to play the position without any risk. It turned out to be tough to break through because of good defence of Rustam Kasimdzhanov and the game finished in a draw.

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Round 2: Four players take early lead in Baku

Hikaru Nakamura, Peter Svidler, Fabiano Caruana and Boris Gelfand are on shared first place after the second round of the FIDE Grand Prix in Baku. Hikaru Nakamura outplayed Dmitry Andreikin, who suffers a second consecutive loss. Shakhriyar Mamedyarov fell into the trap in the time trouble and lost against Peter Svidler. Fabiano Caruana and Boris Gelfand continued theoretical discussion in a Najdorf and right before the first time control the game ended up in perpetual check. Rustam Kasimdzhanov tried to break though Radjabov's Berlin Defence but was held to a draw by Teimour.

It was also a round of missed opportunities as Alexander Grischuk and Leinier Dominguez managed to get winning positions but in both cases their opponents Sergey Karjakin and Evegeny Tomashevsky escaped with draws.


Grischuk 1/2-1/2 Karjakin

Alexander Grischuk chose a very rare line with 5.Nd2 and made his opponent Sergey Karjakin to play without any preparation from the early stage. Nevertheless Karjakin managed to get comfortable position out of the opening. The game was roughly balanced until both players got into the time trouble and things started to sharpen up. After 30...gf 31. Rf5 it became clear that Black's King is in danger. Grischuk passed by the chance to win on a spot after extravagant tactical blow Bf8! However, the move in the text was good enough to secure an advantage for White. By playing 35.Nb5 Grischuk could have brought the last piece into the attack but in the time trouble he thought the move 35.Nf6 was also good enough. Right after the time trouble it turned out that Black had enough resources to save the game.


Svidler 1-0 Mamedyarov

Black was fine after the opening but then White had a slight advantage, which according to Svidler, probably was still not enough to begin with. There was a period when White was much better but Peter made a couple of inaccurate moves which lead to an equal position. Draw seemed to be the most logical result at this point but as Peter Svidler put it during his visit to commentary room “perhaps Shakhriyar could not readjust himself to a new landscape of the game”. After 31.Bd6, apparently missed by Mamedyarov, Black's position collapsed.


Caruana 1/2-1/2 Gelfand

Theoretical dispute in Najdorf, started in January 2014 in Wijk an Zee between same players, continued today but this time Caruana chose 13.Na5 instead of 13.0-0, which brought him success in the previous game. Boris Gelfand was ready for a new line thanks to his second Alexander Huzman, who showed him exchange sacrifice before the game. After that the position became unbalanced and complex and both side had to take responsible decisions on every move. According to Boris, he missed White's move 31.c5 and simply panicked after that. Even though 32...Re8 was not the best choice but it allowed Black to finish the game with the spectacular perpetual check after Caruana's reply 33.h4. After 33.Kh1 Black would have to face serious trouble.


Kasimdzhanov 1/2-1/2 Radjabov

Berlin Defence is a newly added opening in Radjabov's repertoire. Both sides were showing usual plans until the certain point. Absolutely amazing 20.Nd8, demonstrated by Rustam, is not a move one sees every day! “It's a very pleasant move to make but I would be happier if this move would bring the victory”, pointed out former World Champion at the press conference. Even though Teimour was surprised to see Nd8, he found the precise way to equalize the position and made a confident draw in the rook endgame.


Dominguez 1/2-1/2 Tomashevsky

The longest game of the second round which lasted more than 7 hours and finished on move 100. Black managed to equalize in the opening but despite weaknesses in pawns structure Black's position remained also solid in the endgame. According to Evgeny, he could have made his life easier today by playing more precisely in the critical moment but after few mistakes had to defend a very unpleasant position instead. Cuban player missed a few good chances to win and the game eventually finished in a draw.


Andreikin 0-1 Nakamura

Dmitry Andeikin didn't choose the most principle lines against a Dutch Defence but went for quite rare plan with c3 and Qb3. 20 Nf3 was dubious decision after which the tables started to turn in Black's favor. Hikaru concentrated his pieces on the King's side and all of a sudden Black's position became very active. White's position fell apart after crucial mistake 31. Nf4.

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Round 1: Caruana and Gelfand first winners in Grand Prix in Baku


The FIDE Grand Prix in Baku started on Thursday, 1st of October, with two decisive games and four draws. Two local heroes Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Teymour Radjabov drew rather quickly and went to celebrate the 20th anniversary since their first ever game between each other has been played. Fabiano Caruana defeated Sergey Karjakin, who blundered material in the time trouble. Boris Gelfand quickly obtained a clear advantage after unsuccessful opening play from Dmitry Andreikin and eventually won the game. Leinier Dominguez missed a great chance to get decisive material advantage against Rustam Kasimdzhanov and after few more moves the game ended up in draw. Russian players Evgeny Tomashevsky and Alexander Grischuk drew a Gruenfeld that was always more or less balanced. Peter Svidler split a point with Hikaru Nakamura.


Mamedyarov 1/2-1/2 Radjabov


As it was revealed during the press conference the first game between little Teymur and Shakhriyah has been played 20 years ago in the national youth championship. None of them could have imagined that after so many years they would be both representing their country on the highest level. The opening choice already showed not the most aggressive mood of Shakhriyar. The only moment White could have continued the fight was after 14. Nce2. Nevertheless, the force line shows very good compensation for Black sacrificed material. The move in the game led to the massive exchanges and the game eventually finished in a draw as well the game played 20 years ago.


Nakamura 1/2-1/2 Svidler

According to Nakamura, he spent few hours before the game watching Svidler's videos on Gruenfeld Defence but at the last moment he decided to go for 1.e4. Ruy Lopez with early d3 appeared on the board and it turned out Peter was aware of this line and got comfortable position with Black. Both players agreed on 15.cd being not the most precise choice which leaded to quite unpleasant position for White. Hikaru felt the right moment to switch into defensive mode and managed to equalize. However, more pressure could have been put by Peter Svidler after 27...Nb6.


Karjakin 0-1 Caruana

In the opening stage players were competing in attempts to surprise each other. It's not often you can see 1.Nf3 from Sergey Karjakin as well as Queen's Gambit Declined is not the first choice of Caruana. In Carlsbad structure Sergey managed to add marginal edge by playing unusual 12.Ne2 which Caruana declared to be a novelty. Till some point the game developed logically. White passed an interesting attempt to play 22.h4 forcing Black to go for 22...g4 23.Be4 de 24.Nd2 minimizing Black's counter play and preparing a minority attack on the King's side. Despite exciting transformations the game had been balanced until 35. a4. Around move 30 Karjakin failed into an unusual trap. He went to the player's room and was monitoring the game from the TV screen. Because of technical problem with live transmission Sergey Karjakin thought his opponent was still thinking on his move and so he missed 10 priceless minutes which cost him dearly in the time trouble.


Gelfand 1-0 Andreikin

Andreikin went for a fashionable line of Queens Indian possibly basing his preparation on the game Gelfand-Gashimov. It turned out that Boris has something up his sleeve as he had closely analyzed this position 2 years ago. The opening battle finished in favor of Gelfand, who sacrificed a pawn but got a very dangerous initiative. Boris was doing practical and logical moves increasing the pressure and tried to play “without burning the bridges”. Perhaps, Black could have put tougher resistance but it 's hard to believe it would have changed the outcome of the game.


Tomashevsky 1/2-1/2 Grischuk

According to Grischuk, both of the players were definitely analyzing this variation in Gruenfeld and the following endgame at home. “ I was trying to remember all variations, that's why I spent so much time during the game”, said Alexander. After 17. Qd3 Black has to be precise to equalize and after spending some time Grischuk managed to remember the right way.


Dominguez 1/2-1/2 Kasimdzhanov

Leinier decided to avoid theoretical lines in order to postpone a fight for the middle game stage. But as both players pointed out, surprisingly it took them too long to go into the middle game and as a result both of them had 1 hour in total after 12 moves. After 17...Qa6 it seemed Black has got initiative but Dominguez managed to create counter play. In the time trouble Leiner was granted a sudden chance after Rustam's careless 25...Rc8 but Cuban player passed by a relatively easy tactical trick 26.Ne7, which would win the game on a spot. Leiner realized his mistake right after his move and no wonder that the players decided not to tempt fate and agreed for a draw few moves later.

SNo.   Name Rtg Res.   Name Rtg SNo. 1 GM Dominguez Perez Leinier 2751 0.5-0.5 GM Kasimdzhanov Rustam 2706 12 2 GM Tomashevsky Evgeny 2701 0.5-0.5 GM Grischuk Alexander 2797 11 3 GM Karjakin Sergey 2767 0-1 GM Caruana Fabiano 2844 10 4 GM Gelfand Boris 2748 1-0 GM Andreikin Dmitry 2722 9 5 GM Nakamura Hikaru 2764 0.5-0.5 GM Svidler Peter 2732 8 6 GM Mamedyarov Shakhriyar 2764 0.5-0.5 GM Radjabov Teimour 2726 7



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The first stage of Grand Prix Series 2014-2015 started in Baku



The long-awaited FIDE Grand Prix in Baku was officially opened on Wednesday evening at the Cultural Event Center. The tournament's opening ceremony was attended by chess officials, sponsors, national and international chess media.

From 2nd till 14of October over eleven rounds, the strongest players in the world will compete in the round robin tournament.

The opening ceremony started with a one-minute of silence to honor the memory of one of the leading chess players of Azerbaijan Vugar Hashimov. The ceremony proceeded with a short documentary, showing the development of chess in Azerbaijan.

Speakers at the event included the Minister of Youth and Sports of Azerbaijan Republic Azad Rahimov, President of Azerbaijan Chess Federation Elman Rustamov and FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.

Kirsan Ilyumzhinov reminded the guests of the long chess tradition in the Cultural Event Center, where the games will take place. “The building has historical importance as two USSR chess championships (1961 and 1972) were organized here. It was World Champion Boris Spassky who won the championship in 1961 and in 1972 Mikhail Tal became the USSR champion. I hope that one of the participants of the Baku Grand Prix will also become a world champion one day.”

FIDE President stressed the important role of the national leader Heydar Aliyev in the development of chess not only in Azerbaijan, but also in the former USSR. "The national leader Heydar Aliyev made a huge contribution to the development of chess not only in Azerbaijan but also in the USSR. If Heydar Aliyev did not notice and would not have supported small Garik Weinstein, then there would be no World Champion Garry Kasparov. Azerbaijan is the only country from 181, which has the state program for the development of chess. The President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev continues to develop this wise game.”



During the opening ceremony the director of the “Classic Jewelry House Lobortas” Igor Lobortas demonstrated the models of future Big and Small trophies to award the FIDE Grand Prix series 2014-2015 winner. The trophy consists of precious elements and stones of varying size, including silver, gold and diamonds.



Chief Arbiter Faik Gasanov then proceeded with drawing of lots. He called up the players to come to the table and choose the boxes with souvenirs with numbers inside.

During the drawing of lots the opening ceremony and the pairs of the first round are:

Dominguez - Kasimdzhanov
Tomashevsky - Grischuk
Karjakin - Caruana
Gelfand - Andreikin
Nakamura - Svidler
Mamedyarov - Radjabov

The announcement of the pair between two local heroes Mamedyarov-Radjabov was met with applause by guests of the ceremony.



Over the next two weeks Baku will be the main chess centre in the world, so please follow the games starting from 3 pm local time.

GM Emil Sutovsky and GM Evgeny Miroshnichenko will be official commentators during the whole event.

The third Grand Prix series 2014-2015 starts with the first stage in Baku (Azerbaijan). Back in 2008 it was also the capital of Azerbaijan which hosted the first ever Grand Prix stage and a great deal has changed since then as FIDE has organized 30 Grand Prix tournaments.
In contrast to the two previous Grand Prix cycles the number of tournaments was decreased from six to four to be held over two years (2014-2015). Each of 16 players of Grand Prix series will play in three tournaments out of four and all his results will be taken into account for the overall final standings of the Grand Prix. The winner and second placed player overall of the Grand Prix Series will qualify for the Candidates Tournament to be held in the last quarter of 2015 or the first half of 2016.

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Working visit to Brazil

News FIDE -


From the 26th till 30th September, the Continental President Jorge Vega, made a working visit to Brazil for inspecting the site (headquarters) of the World School to be held in Juiz de Fora from 26th November to 4th December, accompanied by Mr. David Jarrett appointed by FIDE for this task. The inspection took place on 26th and 27th in order to prove that the facilities had the necessary conditions stipulated for this event as well as that the hotel facilities can guarantee the presence of up to 1,000 participants. Also to verify that the distance from the local airport to the playing venue is about 25 minutes. Mr. Jarrett was highly pleased with the capacity demonstrated by Brazil to organize large scale events.
Later, in the City of Rio de Janeiro took place a working meeting with GM Darcy Lima, President of CBX and Deputy President of CCA in which he invited Mr. Jarrrett in order to analyze the current situation in America, the work plans made for 2015 and the four years 2014-18.
Mr. Lima and Mr. Vega highlighted the unity of Latin America as a voting block in the last process and expressed the need to maintain the unit in the future, also both were pleased with the presence of WGM Martha Fierro, Ecuador, on the presidential ticket of Mr. Ilyumzhinov strengthening work in America due to her ability to work, charisma and personal charm.
In addittion it was outlined a training plan where Mr. Jarrett would provide seminars for organizers in the English-speaking countries while for the Spanish speaking ones it would be done online directly by the CCA, the arbitration area would also be covered online and regarding training covered by WGM Fierro.
The visit ended with a dinner offered by GM Lima in a renowned restaurant in the Copacabana beach in Rio.
After that, the 2-5 days of October the Continental President travelled to Moscow where he held a meeting with the President of FIDE, Mr. Kirsan Ilyumzhinov who was accompanied by Mr. Berik Balgabaev, his Assistant; on this occasion Mr. Vega updated the FIDE President on the state of America who was pleased with the unity of the American block. Mr. Ilyumzhinov restated his commitment to economic and direct support for the events Latin Cup, Umada Cup and the Central American Championship for teams for the period 2015-17 and reported to examine the possibilities of extending this support to add extra competition in the English-speaking Caribbean.
The possibility was also analyzed to add a qualifying place for the next cycle of the Women's World Championship which would allow America to make a qualifying Continental annually instead of the current two-year, remembering to present the proposal at the next Presidential Board meeting.
FIDE President reported on preparations for the Anand - Carlsen match to be held in Sochi and was optimistic about the future of FIDE. The meeting was held in a very cordial atmosphere and ended on October 4 at 11:30 PM.

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