Archive for the ‘World Chess News’ Category

14-year-old R Praggnanandhaa crowned under-18 chess champion

October 14, 2019

“Praggnanandhaa scored an impressive and unbeaten 9/11 and he ended with a performance rating over 2700.

(Photo: Twitter/Chess.com India)

— Read on www.google.com/amp/s/www.deccanchronicle.com/amp/sports/in-other-news/131019/14-year-old-r-praggnanandhaa-crowned-under-18-chess-champion.html

Advertisements

#Chess Position Worth Sharing 110

September 18, 2019

A remarkable position occurred after white played 47. Qxg3 in the game Samuel Sevian vs. Sergey Karjakin, FIDE World Cup 2019. Karjakin has only three legal responses as black and each would directly result in a different outcome (a win, a loss or a draw.)

Black to move and win, lose or draw! (Samuel Sevian – Sergey Karjakin, World Cup, Khanty-Mansiysk RUS, 2019.09.10.)

ChessKid To Attempt Chess World Record With GM Judit Polgar

September 1, 2019

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Palo Alto, Calif., Aug. 28, 2019—The world’s largest chess website for children will team with the greatest female chess player ever in an attempt to set an official Guinness world record for world’s largest chess tournament, the site announced today.

GM Judit Polgar, the strongest woman to ever play the game of chess, joins ChessKid in the record attempt, which will run from Sept. 1 to Oct. 5. Polgar will lead the ChessKid club that will organize the tournament.

All kids with a ChessKid account are invited to compete in the tournament and participate in the world record. To join the record-attempting tournament, go to https://www.chesskid.com/register/kid/club/ckpolgar-world-record-club.

To set the record, ChessKid needs more than 20,000 individual children to compete in the tournament, said Mike Klein, the site’s chief chess officer.

The tournament will have two stages. The qualifying stage will begin on Sept. 1 and run through Oct. 5, and will constitute the record-setting attempt for largest chess tournament with 144 qualifiers.

There will be four last-chance “super-qualifiers” on the day of Polgar’s Global Chess Festival, which is October 12.

All kids qualifying from one of these 144 qualifiers will then play a final on October 19 at 8 a.m. Pacific time.

Any child who completes a single qualifier (all six rounds) will be counted toward the world record and will receive a special certificate from ChessKid signed by Judit Polgar. Participation in the finals is not required to count as part of the record.

As further incentive to play, ChessKid will randomly select one kid per qualifier (144 total) to receive one free year of ChessKid gold membership. Participants must play all six games of the qualifier to be eligible.

Five kids will be chosen at random to receive a signed copy of Judit Polgar’s book, How I Beat Fischer’s Record, and one lucky ChessKid will be randomly selected for a private lesson online with Polgar.

The top five finishers in the finals will also all receive a signed copy of the book, and will each get to play one blitz game against Polgar and one against Klein. The winner of the overall finals will also get one free online chess lesson with Polgar.

More prizes will be added later by local organizers and sponsors.

ChessKid will use all of its normal fair-play protection measures to ensure that games are played under the site’s guidelines.

Any child that is found to have used outside assistance or violated other policies will not be eligible for qualifying to the finals or any other prizes, and will also not have their participation count toward the record. All decisions made by ChessKid on fair-play cases are final.

By participating in the tournament, players agree they have their parent or guardian’s permission to play.

To join the world’s largest chess tournament and set the Guinness world record, join the Chesskid club at https://www.chesskid.com/register/kid/club/ckpolgar-world-record-club. Players must join the club to register for a qualifier.

About ChessKid:
ChessKid is the world’s largest website for children to learn and play. ChessKid.com is specifically designed to be a safe and fun place for kids, while providing resources for parents and coaches.

About Judit Polgar:
Judit Polgar is universally considered the strongest female chess player of all time. A chess prodigy, Polgar earned the grandmaster title at age 14. She is the only woman in the history of chess to surpass the 2700 rating threshold and to qualify for a world championship tournament. Polgar is also an accomplished author, chess coach and ambassador of the game.

Contact:

Mike Klein

Chief Chess Officer, ChessKid.com
mike@chesskid.com

Pal Benko, Who Stepped Aside for Bobby Fischer, Dies at 91

August 27, 2019

Pal Benko, Who Stepped Aside for Bobby Fischer, Dies at 91

Pal Benko, a chess grandmaster who was among the world’s best players for two decades, but who gave up his place in the 1969-72 world championship cycle to Bobby Fischer, paving the way for Mr. Fischer to become world champion, died on Monday in Budapest. He was 91.

— Read on www.google.com/amp/s/www.nytimes.com/2019/08/26/sports/pal-benko-dead.amp.html

14th Annual SPFNO– 4/27-28/2019 (Santa Clara, California)

April 20, 2019

Dear Chess Parents,

As many of you are aware, in 2015 I helped to bring the prestigious Susan Polgar National Open for Girls and Boys to California. I may no longer be the organizer for this event, but I still support its mission 100%. Because of this, I strongly encourage all of my fellow California chess families to attend this wonderful tournament.

Sincerely,

Chris Torres

The prestigious annual Susan Polgar National Open Championship for Girls and Boys (SPFNO) was created in 2006 and is sponsored by the Susan Polgar Foundation (SPF) to give more opportunities to young chess players in the United States.

The top player of each championship section in the SPFNO will be awarded:

• Qualifications for the Prominent Susan Polgar National Invitational for Girls (Girls sections only.)

• $100,000 in prizes and scholarships to Webster University (U16/18 sections only.)

• $250 cash scholarship to the winner of each section if they go to the World Youth / Cadet (issued upon receipt of their flight ticket.)

14th SPF Nationwide Open for Girls and Boys – APR 27-28, 2019

$100,000+ in Prizes (lots of trophies, chess prizes & scholarships)

CHAMPIONSHIP SECTIONS: U8, U10, U12, U14, U16/18 in separate sections for Girls and Boys. 2 day event!

$1,000 Triple Crown Bonus!

PRIZES: Trophies to Top 15 players, Top 3 School Teams & Club Teams.

TIME CONTROL: G/60;d5

ROUND TIMES: Sat 9:30am, 12:30am, 3:30pm, Sun 9:30am, 12pm, 2:30pm

RESERVE SECTIONS: K-Gr4 u500, K-Gr8 u800. Saturday only event.

PRIZES: Trophies to Top 10 players, Top 3 School Teams & Club Teams.

TIME CONTROL: G/30;d5

ROUND TIMES: Sat ONLY 9:30am, 11am, Lunch, 12:30pm, 2pm, & 3:30pm.

Event Venue: Santa Clara Convention Center

Address: 5001 Great America Parkway, Santa Clara, CA 95045 (map)

Free Parking!

Sign up at http://www.spfno.com

Chess Chat: Q&A with Devanshi Rathi, UC Berkeley Student and Nonprofit Founder

April 16, 2019

Devanshi Rathi is a current undergraduate student at the University of California, Berkeley. She is a passionate chess player and enjoys playing and watching different sports. Her mission in life is to create a positive difference in the world around her. She is trying to do that through her foundation, the Devanshi Rathi Foundation, a registered non-profit company. In her free time, she likes to write about sports and loves to take interviews of different players because it leaves her inspired.

How old were you when you first learned how to play chess? Who taught you?

I was eight years old (in 2008) when I first learnt how to play chess. I learnt from my school coach and via self-practice in the beginning.

How has chess effected your decision making process off the board?

Chess has definitely helped my decision making process off the board. I try to strategize and plan my ‘moves’ well in advance before actually ‘playing’ them. Obviously, I don’t always go according to my original plan, but that happens most of the times in chess as well.

How did your earlier career choices lead you to where you are now?

I am not sure about this. I tried to turn into a professional chess player, or at least was working towards it for about a year and a half, but I had other interests and passions in life that always made me distracted. To become a professional, one needs sole focus on the game, and I just couldn’t do that. Moreover, my multiple interests led me to pursue a major in college that is independently designed, and I’m currently working on how I can get an effective research proposal in order to declare the same.

How would you define your chess style?

I think it would be aggressive and attacking. I don’t like to defend that much, maybe I’m not that good at it!

Does your chess style transfer over into your business decisions as well?

Yes, but I feel that I tend to be more combinatory in my business decisions. Too much aggression in the business field can cost one a lot.

What has been your worst chess mistake which has given you the biggest lesson?

My worst chess mistake would be to not participate in a number of tournaments in my earlier years. I practiced myself instead of playing in different events. It has made me realise that one must make the most of one’s current time and not think too much in advance. It is the same in chess- one shouldn’t go so deep in their calculations that we lose sight of the current position.

Do you think chess has helped you to become more resilient in life?

Yes, of course! Participating in competitions definitely helps one to get more resilient and that reciprocates into one’s personal life as well, according to my experience.

What do you hope to achieve professionally during the next couple of years?

I am currently exploring my options. I’m taking a diverse set of classes for my interdisciplinary major and can only see what happens as it happens. Not planning too much at the moment. This could be a contradiction to what I said earlier about me planning well in advance. However, this is a situation where I feel that the more ‘time’ you take, the better move you would ‘play’.

What is the biggest challenge to achieving that goal?

As I don’t know the goal yet, the biggest challenge would be to find my path.

How would you relate these goals and challenges to the chessboard?

In chess, one needs to find the real path to victory and that can take the whole game. Similarly, I’m taking my time to decide.

Could you please leave us with a favorite piece of chess wisdom to conclude this interview?

Chess is an ocean where an ant can swim and an elephant can drown.

Thanks a lot for giving me this opportunity to do this interview!

To find out more about the Devanshi Rathi Foundation and Project Checkmate, please visit: https://projectcheckmate.weebly.com/

Vladimir Kramnik’s Career in Chess

January 30, 2019

kramnik_biog_06

On the occasion of Vladimir Kramnik’s retirement from competitive chess, I present a retrospective review of past articles on Kramnik featured on this blog. Enjoy…

 

Tromso Chess Olympiad Round 5: Kramnik vs Topalov

August 7, 2014: Thus far, the  41st Chess Olympiad in Tromso, Norway has lived up to all the hype surrounding the event. Almost all of the top chess players in the world are competing for personal glory and, more importantly, national pride. Even with hundreds of exciting games played in each round, all eyes were focused squarely onto the Russia-Bulgaria match which featured a game between the rivals, Vladimir Kramnik and Veselin Topalov…

 

Kasparov Vs. Kramnik – Queen Sacrifice move 12

May 18, 2014: Definitely a most worthy game!

 

Kramnik vs. Svidler: 2009 Tal Memorial

November 10, 2009: Below is Kramnik’s win over Svidler in a Gruenfeld Defense: Exchange Variation. A lot could be stated about the opening theory as Kramnik tried a new move successfully with 12. h4. However, I do not believe Kramnik’s courageous new move is to blame for Svidler’s failure. Instead, Svidler seemed to have forgotten that “Knight’s on the rim are dim” and attempted to spar with a world champion contender minus a Knight. I say minus a Knight due to the fact that Svidler moved his Knight to a6 on move 11 and then left it there to rot…

 

Anand-Kramnik: Game 6 from the 2008 World Championship of Chess

October 22, 2008: The championship chess board in Bonn has become a form of torture for Vladimir Kramnik. After loosing game 6, Kramnik has just six games left and is down three full points. A loosing streak against a world champion is very hard to fix. In Kramnik’s case, achieving a win against Anand must seem like a desperate dream of freedom for a convict walking the “green mile.”

 

Anand-Kramnik: Game 5 from the 2008 World Championship of Chess

October 21, 2008: Kramnik must be feeling miserable. Anand has beaten him with the black pieces once again. Now down two full points with 7 games to go, Kramnik must take considerable risks if he is to have any chance at becoming world champion again. Taking these risks could easily backfire and have the effect of causing this match to become a total blow-out…

 

Anand-Kramnik: Game 4 from the 2008 World Championship of Chess

October 19, 2008: It was back to the “drawing” board in game 4 from Bonn, Germany.  Defending champion Viswanathan Anand played the white side in the solid Queen’s Gambit Declined. Kramnik ended up with the ubiquitous isolated queen’s pawn and allowed Anand no opportunities for victory…

 

Anand-Kramnik: Game 3 from the 2008 World Chess Championship

October 18, 2008: In game 3 from the 2008 World Chess Championships, Viswanathan Anand put on a tactical display using his fiery attacking style to beat Vladimir Kramnik into submission…

 

Anand-Kramnik: Game 2 from the 2008 World Chess Championship

October 17, 2008: The second game from the 2008 World Chess Championship ended in a draw. In an attempt to show off some of his preparation for playing white against the Slav(1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6), Anand decided to use 1.d4 instead of his favorite 1.e4. Kramnik avoided the technical Slav lines in game 1 and chose to use the Nimzo-Indian Defence(1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4) in game 2. Perhaps Kramnik is concerned about Anand’s knowledge in the Slav. This game becomes very complicated very quickly after Anand plays the surprising 4.f3 which is a favorite of Russian grandmaster Yuri Yakovich…

 

Anand-Kramnik Game 1 from the 2008 World Chess Championship

October 15, 2008: Kramnik faced off against Anand in Game 1 of the World Chess Championship Match on October 14, 2008. The “Battle of Bonn” began with little surprise as Anand chose to play one of his main weapons referred to as the Slav Defense to the Queen’s Gambit Declined. The game concluded after move 32 when a draw was agreed to…

 

Team Kramnik

October 15, 2008: For the 2008 World Chess Championship match in Bonn, Germany, Vladimir Kramnik has selected these players as his “Seconds.” I hope my readers will visit again tomorrow to view my coverage for game 1 of the 2008 World Chess Championship Match between Viswanathan Anand and Vladimir Kramnik…

 

My Friends are Better Than Yours… Anand and Kramnik Get Seconds

October 13, 2008: The upcoming 12 game World Championship match between Anand and Kramnik is creating internet rumors faster than Alexandra Kosteniuk makes blitz moves in China. Most of these rumors seem to be speculation on opening choices and who is going to be the “Second” for Anand and Kramnik. A “Second” refers to a chess players choice of another strong chess player to help him/her prepare for a particular opponent. Generally this early preparation focuses on finding new ideas and weaknesses in an opponent’s opening repertoire. The role of the Second was arguably much more important in the time before large chess databases and strong computer engines. With the onset of the computer dominated age of chess, we are also seeing match play that has a much shorter structure and therefor less games to try prepared innovations. The upcoming match between Anand and Kramnik is only scheduled for 12 rounds. I am confident that both Anand and Kramnik are capable of coming up with six very good ideas as to what to try with each color. For the upcoming Anand vs. Kramnik match, a Second’s primary role will likely be acting as the flashy Rybka yielding intimidator in a world champion contender’s entourage. Basically a “my friend is stronger than your friend” ornament meant to impress upon the chess world that the player that attracts friends/disciples with higher ratings must be the next chess messiah…

 

Unfair Criticism of Kramnik

October 8, 2008: Tonight I attempt to defend Vladimir Kramnik from those who cast stones at the former World Chess Champion. I believe the upcoming 2008 World Chess Championship will be an exciting event played between two outstanding chess players who are wonderful ambassadors for the game of chess. Below are my opinions about the three most common critical myths that haunt Kramnik…

 

Kramnik vs. Anand 2008 (preview game revisited)

October 7, 2008: Seven Days until the Anand vs. Kramnik 2008 World Championship Match. I am revisiting a game they played in 2007 at the request of several fans of my blog…

 

Kramnik vs. Anand

October 4, 2008: Tonight I present another preview game for the upcoming World Chess Championship match between Viswanathan Anand and Vladimir Kramnik. The game I chose is a recent example of the two contenders going head to head in a major event.  My analysis is above the game that was played at the Corus tournament in 2007…

 

Can Kramnik Win With The Black Pieces? Will It Matter?

September 30, 2008: Between 1989 and 2008 Viswanathan Anand and Vladimir Kramnik played 51 head-to-head games under classical conditions. The results below show that Kramnik has yet to win a game as black when up against Anand. This is a remarkable statistic based on the number of match-ups these two chess players have had. Vladimir Kramnik’s win with white and draw with black strategy can hurt his tournament results but is exceptionally difficult to crack in match play. Unless he should find himself in danger of loosing the match, I would be very surprised if Kramnik changes his goal for the black pieces…

 

Vladimir Kramnik in Germany

September 27, 2008: The upcoming World Championship Chess Match against Viswanathan Anand is not Vladimir Kramnik’s first chess match in Germany. In July of 2000 Kramnik played another high profile match in Deutschland. This time his opponent was the highly touted computer program Deep Junior. Because his opponent was a computer, Kramnik used anti-computer strategy that would not work against someone like Anand. This does not take anything away from Kramnik’s achievement in the game below. His play was nothing short of brilliant…

 

Kramnik vs. Anand 2008 preview: A 1996 game played by Kramnik

September 26, 2008: In 1996 Vladimir Kramnik played an exceptionally brilliant game as black verses a very strong opponent named Vassily Ivanchuk. Kramnik used fantastic opening preparation as well as brilliant tactical play to pressure Ivanchuk to error and finally resign. On move 6. Bg5 Ivanchuk initiates a Richter-Rauzer attack which provides the much needed tactical fuel for Kramnik’s fire. Kramnik move 14…Ng4 was a brand new idea that caught his opponent off guard. The move sacrifices the exchange but gives Kramnik long term pressure on the dark squares as well as some initiative to attack with. On 17. g3 Ivanchuk makes a small error which allows black to gain even more initiative. Ivanchuk should have played 17. Qf3. Kramnik’s 19…f5 was paticulary powerful and kept his attack going. On move 27 Kramnik makes a huge error with only five minutes left on his clock. I believe Kramnik should have tried 27…Qe7. To everone’s shock, Ivanchuk played 28. Nd3 which allowed Kramnik to win easily…

 

Anand vs. Kramnik: Backround Information

September 24, 2008: Anand vs. Kramnik should provide the most entertaining chess we have seen in quite some time. Below is a comparison of the achievements of these two chess titans…

 

Countdown until Anand vs. Kramnik

September 22, 2008: In 22 days Viswanathan Anand and Vladimir Kramnik will face off in Bonn, Germany for the title of World Chess Champion. According to my database these two elite chess players have faced each other in 127 official games. On these occasions, Anand beat Kramnik 19 to 15, with 93 draws. Below is Vladimir Kramnik vs. Viswanathan Anand from the so called fide World Championships in Mexico City. Kramnik missed 35 Qh6! after 35…Qd6 36 Qxg5 f6 37 Qg8 Rd8 38 Qh7 Rd7 39 Qh4. After running computer analysis on that line I feel Kramnik would have had much better winning chances…   

 

 

Happy International Chess Day

July 20, 2018

Wishing everyone the best on International Chess Day!

More Fighting Chess from the 2016 Chess Olympiad

September 6, 2016

Today’s featured game from the 2016 Chess Olympiad includes an attack straight out of a chess hustler’s playbook which leads to a victory in just 27 moves. Hats off to Bader Al-Hajiri (Kuwait) and Rodwell Makoto (Zimbabwe) for playing such an entertaining game. Enjoy…

 

[Event “Chess Olympiad”]
[Site “Baku, Azerbaijan”]
[Date “2016.9.5”]
[Round “4”]
[White “Al-Hajiri, Bader”]
[Black “Makoto, Rodwell”]
[Result “0-1”]
[Eco “C48”]
[Annotator “Chris Torres”]

{[ FOUR KNIGHTS’ GAME,C48]}

1.e4 e5

2.Nf3 Nc6

3.Nc3 Nf6

4.Bb5 Bc5

5.Nxe5

 

Position after 5. Nxe5

Position after 5. Nxe5

 

5… O-O {!?}

( 5…Nxe5 6.d4 {The Fork Trick} Bd6 7.f4 (7.dxe5 Bxe5 8.Be3 c6 9.Be2 O-O) 8.  Nc6 8.e5 {The Fork Trick: Part Two} O-O 9.exd6 Re8+
{And oddly enough, black is fine.} )

( 5…Bxf2+ {?!} 6.Kxf2 Nxe5 7.d4 Ng6 ( 7…Nfg4+ 8.Ke1 c6 9.dxe5 d6 10.Be2 Nxe5 11.Bf4
{and white is winning.} ) ( 7…Neg4+ 8.Kg1 c6 9.Be2 d5 10.exd5
O-O 11.dxc6 bxc6 12.h3 Nh6 13.g4 {I’d be happy to play as white from here.}) 8.e5 c6 9.exf6 {!} Qxf6+ 10.Qf3 Qxf3+ 11.gxf3 cxb5 12.Re1+
Kd8 13.Nxb5 {and white is better.} )

6.Nf3

( 6.O-O Nxe5 7.d4 Bd6 8.f4 Nc6 9.e5 Bb4 10.exf6 Qxf6 11.Nd5 Qxd4+ 12.Be3 Qxd1 13.Raxd1
Bd6 14.f5 f6 15.Bf4 Ne5 16.Bxe5 fxe5 17.f6 c6 18.Ne7+ Bxe7 19.fxe7
Re8 20.Bc4+ d5 21.Rxd5 cxd5 22.Bxd5+ Be6 23.Bxe6+ Kh8 24.Rf7
h5 25.Kf2 Kh7 {…1-0, Kulaots Kaido (EST) 2581 – Roiz Michael (ISR) 2652 , Plovdiv 3/22/2012 Ch Europe})

( 6.Bxc6 dxc6 7.Nf3 Nxe4 8.Nxe4 Re8 9.d3 f5 10.O-O fxe4 11.dxe4
Bg4 12.Qe2 )

6… Nd4

7.Nxd4 ( 7.Be2 Nxe2 8.Qxe2 d5 9.d3 Bb4 10.e5
Re8 11.O-O Bg4 {Looks like a fun position for both colors.} )

7… Bxd4

8.Ne2 {?} {Bader Ali-Hajiri is asking for trouble with this move. Better was:}
( 8.O-O Re8 9.Be2 Bxc3 10.dxc3 Nxe4 )

 

Position after 8. Ne2

Position after 8. Ne2

 

8… Bxf2+ {!} {Rodwell Makoto responds with fire.}

9.Kxf2 Nxe4+

10.Ke1 Qf6 {Attacks like these are usually reserved for the street chess hustlers. I’m taking notes.}

11.Rf1 Qh4+

12.Ng3 Re8 {Threatening a discovered check with Nc3 which wins the queen.}

 

Position after 12... Re8

Position after 12… Re8

 

13.Be2 Nxg3 {Not sure I agree with voluntarily trading pieces here. Black is attacking and
therefor should be looking to bring in more force not remove it.}

14.hxg3 Qxg3+

15.Rf2 {Bader Al-Hajiri has done a fine job weathering Rodwell Makoto’s creative attack.}

15… d5

16.Kf1 {?} {Unpinning the rook and bishop by stepping aside is tempting but now when
black’s queen moves to h2 white will be in serious trouble. Much better was:}
( 16.d4 Qh2 17.Bf4 Qg1+ 18.Rf1 Qxg2 19.Rf2 Qg1+ 20.Rf1 Qg2 {draw by repetition.})

 

Position after 16. Kf1

Position after 16. Kf1

 

16… Qh2 {!}

17.Rf3 Bg4 ( 17…d4 18.d3 Bg4 19.c3
Re6 20.Bf4 Qh1+ 21.Kf2 Rxe2+ 22.Qxe2 Qxa1 {is another way to go about the attack.})

18.a4 {?} {Trying to make up for his earlier mistakes, Beder Al-Hajiri will try to get
both of his rooks unified in the third rank. This is a very unusual plan and unfortunately, for Al-Hajiri, not very effective.}

( 18.Re3 {Exchanging the queens and freeing the pieces was a much better plan for white.}
Qh1+ 19.Kf2 Qxd1 20.Bxd1 Bxd1 21.d4 c6 22.c3 f6 23.Bd2 )

18… Re6

19.Raa3 {Bader Al-Hajiri has accomplished his goal behind playing 18. a4.}

 

Position after 19. Raa3

Position after 19. Raa3

 

19… d4 {!} {With one pawn push, Rodwell Makoto takes away his opponent’s chances of placing
a rook into the open e-file. This is a crushing blow to white.}

20.Rh3 {Bader Al-Hajiri tries to resurrect some purpose for his rooks being in the third rank.}

20… Rf6+

21.Rhf3 ( 21.Raf3 Bxh3 22.gxh3 Rg6 23.Ke1 Re8 {is even worse for black.})

21… Re8 {Rodwell Makoto has four pieces left and they are all involved in the attack on Bader Al-Hajiri’s king.}

22.Kf2 Qh4+

23.Kg1 Rfe6

24.g3 Qh5

25.Bf1 {?} {Its impossible to defend against such force with such a disorganized position. However, Rfe3 was the more accurate choice.} ( 25.Rfe3 Bxe2 26.Qxe2 Qxe2 27.Rxe2 Rxe2 28.Rf3 )

 

Position after 25. Bf1

Position after 25. Bf1

 

25… Re1{!} {Just crushing.}

26.Rae3 R8xe3

27.Rxe3 Rxe3 {and Bader Al-Hajiri resigns as his queen is trapped.}
0-1

 

Final Position

Final Position

Hidden Gems Abound at the 2016 Chess Olympiads

September 4, 2016

One of my favorite hobbies is treasure hunting for beautifully instructive chess games during the annual Chess Olympiads. With more than 180 countries each sending their best male and female teams to compete in one event, the Chess Olympiads is a veritable mother load of chess gems. For hunting these chess treasures, I follow along at:

The official site for the 2016 FIDE Chess Olympiads

http://www1.bakuchessolympiad.com//

 

 

Chess Daily News

https://chessdailynews.com

 

ChessGames.com

http://www.chessgames.com/index.html

 

FM Qiu Zhou of Canada

FM Qiyu Zhou of Canada

And to illustrate just the kind of hidden gems I am talking about, I present Sindira Joshi (Nepal) vs. Qiyu Zhou (Canada) from round 1 of the 2016 FIDE Chess Olympiads. Enjoy…

[Event “Chess Olympiad”]
[Site “Baku, Azerbaijan”]
[Date “2016.9.2”]
[Round “1”]
[White “Joshi, Sindira”]
[Black “Zhou, Qiyu”]
[Result “0-1”]
[Eco “C54”]
[Annotator “Chris Torres”]

{[ ITALIAN GAME & HUNGARIAN def.,C54]}

1.e4 e5

2.Nf3 Nc6

3.d4 {The start to the Scotch.}

3… exd4

4.Bc4 Bc5

5.c3 {Transposing to a Giuoco Piano.}

5… Nf6

6.cxd4 Bb4+

7.Bd2 {White could have also chosen the equally popular Moeller Attack by playing Nc3 and gambitting the e-pawn.}

( 7.Nc3 Nxe4 8.O-O Bxc3 9.d5 Bf6 10.Re1 O-O 11.Rxe4 Ne7 12.d6
cxd6 13.Qxd6 Nf5 14.Qd5 d6 15.Bg5 Bxg5 16.Nxg5 Qxg5 17.Qxf7+
{1-0, Euwe Max (NED) – Van Mindeno A, Netherlands 1927 It “AVRO”} )

 

Position after 7. Bd2

Position after 7. Bd2

 

7… Nxe4

8.Bxb4 Nxb4

9.Bxf7+ Kxf7

10.Qb3+ d5 {Discovered by Gioachino Greco, this line is a mere 400 years old.}

 

Position after 10... d5

Position after 10… d5

 

11.Qxb4 {Greco preffered Ne5+ here.}

11… Rf8

12.Nc3 {So far so good for the much lower rated Sindira Joshi. Her chances are about equal here.}
( 12.O-O Ng5 13.Ne5+ Kg8 14.Nc3 c6 15.f4 Nf7 16.Ne2 Nd6 17.Ng3
a5 18.Qa3 a4 19.Qb4 a3 20.bxa3 Nb5 21.a4 Qd6 22.Rab1 Qxb4 23.Rxb4
Nc3 24.Rb3 Nxa4 25.Ne2 Ra6 26.g3 Nb6 27.Nc3 Na4 28.Ne2 Nb6 29.Nc3
Nc4 30.Nxc4 dxc4 31.Rb4 b5 {…1/2-1/2, Schaefer Markus (GER) 2390 – Postny Evgeny (ISR) 2595 , Plovdiv 10/19/2010 Cup European Club})

12… Nxc3 13.bxc3 {?} {A slight innacuracy. Better was Qxc3 as seen in this game:}

( 13.Qxc3 Kg8 14.O-O Qd6 15.Ne5 Bf5 16.Rae1 Rae8 17.Re3 Re6 18.Rfe1
Ref6 19.b4 {1/2-1/2, Danilenko Dmitriy (UKR) 1992 – Pavlov Maxim (UKR) 2327 , Alushta 5/18/2006 Ch Ukraine (1/2 final)})

13… Kg8

14.Ne5 {?} {Another harmless looking mistake. Much better was h4 to prevent Qg5.}

 

Position after 14. Ne5

Position after 14. Ne5

 

14… Qg5 {Here comes trouble.}

15.g3 {?} {As dangerous as it looks, castling is to be preferred here.}

15… Rxf2 {!} {Qiyu Zhou starts her combination with a beautiful rook sacrifice.}

 

Position after 15.... Rxf2

Position after 15…. Rxf2

 

16.Kxf2 Qd2+

17.Kf3 Bh3 {Qiyu Zhou is putting on a tactical clinic.}

 

Position after 15... Bh3

Position after 15… Bh3

 

18.Rad1 {Sindira Joshi seems to be playing the most accurate responses but Qiyu Zhou continues to press her advantage.}

18… Bg2+

19.Kg4 Qe2+

20.Kh4 Bxh1 {Not just to win the exchange but also to set up a vicious fork.}

 

Position after 20... Bxh1

Position after 20… Bxh1

 

21.Rxh1 Qe4+ {and now Sindira Joshi’s only chance is to hope for a rare blunder from Qiyu Zhou.}

22.Kh3 Qxh1 {Qiyu Zhou concludes the prefectly executed 8 move combination.}

23.Qe7 {Sindira Joshi finally has a choice but it is to pick her own poison.}

( 23.Qxb7 Rf8 24.Qxc7 Qf1+ 25.Kh4 Qf6+ 26.Kh3 Qf5+ 27.g4 Qf1+
28.Kg3 Qf4+ 29.Kg2 g5 {seems very unpleasant for white.} ) {%09DB}

23… Qf1+ {Qiyu Zhou grabs the initiative again.}

 

Position after 23... Qf1+

Position after 23… Qf1+

 

24.Kh4 Qf6+ {Qiyu Zhou wisely choses to force an exchange of queens and head into a rook vs. knight endgame.}

25.Qxf6 gxf6

26.Nd7 Kf7

27.Nc5 b6

28.Nd3 Re8

29.Nf4 {Hats off to Sindira Joshi for continueing to play on and give us a chance to study good endgame technique.}

 

Position after 29. Nf4

Position after 29. Nf4

 

29… c6

30.Kg4 Re3

31.Kf5 {Nothing can be done to save white’s queenside pawns from a Qiyu Zhou’s rampaging rook.}

31… Rxc3

32.Nh5 Rc2

33.h4 Rxa2

34.Kf4 a5

35.Ke3 b5

36.Nf4 a4

37.Nd3 a3

38.Nb4 Rb2 {Sindira Joshi resigns as there is no hope left for white.} 0-1

 

Final Position

Final Position


%d bloggers like this: