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World Champion Yifan Hou

Peter Parr (27/12/10)

¬†16-year-old GM Yifan Hou of China has become the youngest¬† ever¬† Womenís World Champion by winning the 64 -player knockout match tournament in Hatay, Turkey.¬† Yifan Hou (2591) led the four game final 2-1 but lost to¬† her compatriot¬† 23-year-old WGM Lufei Ruan (CHN 2480) in a very sharp Keres Attack in the Sicilian Defence leaving the match score 2-2.¬†¬† Lufei Ruan had won all five earlier matches in the rapid-play offs after tying every match!¬† Yifan Hou dominated the rapid play-off final winning 3-1.¬†¬† Yifan Hou was already performing at 2400 level at the age of 11 and in November 2008 became the youngest female in history to qualify for the full grandmaster title at the age of 14.5. ¬†

Sergey Karjakin (GM at the age of 12)  was the sole leader before the last round of the 63rd Russian Championship in Moscow. Twenty-year-old Karjakin won the following game against his main rival in round 3 but lost his only game in the final round resulting in a tie for first place between Karjakin and twenty-year-old Ian Nepomniachtchi who recently won the European Title. The rapid play-off match was tied 1-1 and Nepomniachtchi became the new Russian Champion after a blitz armageddon game in which Karjakin should have won but it resulted in a draw.

¬†Karjakin,Sergey (2760) - Nepomniachtchi,Ian (2720) [B90] rd 3¬†¬†¬† 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be3 e5 7.Nf3 Be7 8.Bc4 0Ė0 9.0Ė0 Nc6 10.Re1 Be6 11.Nd5 b5 12.Bb3 Bxd5 13.Bxd5 Qc7 14.c3 Nxd5 15.Qxd5 Bf6 16.Red1 Rfd8 17.a4 Ne7 18.Qd3 Qc6 19.axb5 axb5 20.Rxa8 Rxa8 21.h4 h6 22.Bg5 hxg5 23.hxg5 Rd8 24.gxf6 gxf6 25.Nh2 d5 26.Ng4 d4 27.Qg3 Ng6 28.Qf3 Kg7 29.Ne3 Ne7 30.Qg4+ Kf8 31.Qh4 Kg7 32.Rd3 Qb6 33.cxd4 exd4 34.Qg4+ Kf8 35.Qd1 Ke8 36.Qh5 Rd6 37.Qh8+ Kd7 38.Ng4 Qc6 39.e5 Ng6 40.Nxf6+ Ke6 41.Qh3+ Kxe5 42.Ng4+ Kd5 43.Rd1 Qe8 44.Qf3+ Qe4 45.Qxf7+ Qe6 46.Ne3+ Ke5 47.Ng4+ Kd5 48.Qb7+ Kc4 49.Rc1+ 1Ė0

Leading final scores (12 players,2706 average rating,11 rounds)  I.Nepomniachtchi (2720) and S.Karjakin (2760) 7, A.Grischuk (2771), P.Svidler (2722) 6.5, V.Malakhov (2712) and N.Vitiugov (2709) 5.5

¬†The new Guinness world record of 20,480 players¬† with 320 participants in each of 64 squares¬† (including 140 blind players)¬† got together to play chess against 1024 masters (led by World Champion Viswanathan Anand of India) in Gujarat University,Ahmedabad, India on Christmas Eve.¬† The previous record was 13, 446 players at Mexico City in 2006.¬† 17-year-old Parimarjan Negi¬† (GM at age 13) has won the Championship of India in New Delhi scoring an undefeated 9.5/13 against 8 GMís and 5 IMís.

 Zoltan Almasi (Hun 2721) won the European Rapid title (723 players including 529 world rated, 55 GM, 13 rounds ) in play- off matches after a 6 - way tie for first place in Warsaw. Rapid chess (15 mins plus 10 secs per move) has become very popular in the last few years and events are often held on free days in major tournaments.

 The top seeds in the Gold Coast QLD International  26-30 Dec (52 players from 5 countries)  are -  Australian Champion GM Z.Zhao (NSW) 2586, IM G.Xie (NSW) 2478, M.Ly (QLD) 2321, FM J.Ikeda (ACT) 2262, IM J.Morris (VIC) 2240.

139 players have so far entered the  Australian Open Championship and supporting tournaments  at Norths,Cammeray,Sydney commencing Sunday 2 January.   Enquiries - Norman Greenwood tel 0431 234 741. The top seeds are GM Z.Zhao (Australian Champion, NSW), IM G.Xie (NSW), IM S.Solomon (QLD), FM V.Smirnov (NSW), M.Ly (QLD), FM G.Canfell (NSW) and FM M.Illingworth (NSW).  IM Aleks Wohl ( NSW 2424) will not be defending his Open Title as he is competing (16th seed) in the International Congress in Hastings, England.

Carlsen wins  London Classic

Peter Parr (20/12/10)

 Magnus Carlsen won the London Classic after losing two of his first three games against Luke McShane and World Champion Viswanathan Anand.  Former World Champion Vladimir Kramnik had a crushing position against Carlsen in round six but Carlsen was very resourceful under pressure and escaped with a draw. Carlsen won his other three later games  finishing with 4 wins, 1 draw   and 2 losses. McShane and Anand were undefeated with 2 wins each and five draws. The regular tournament table gives each of the top three players  on 4.5/7.   The London Classic scoring system as in soccer was 3 points for a win, 1 for a draw leaving Carlsen as the outright winner.

¬†Adams,Michael (2723) - Howell,David W L (2611) [C67]¬† 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nf6 4.0Ė0 Nxe4 5.d4 Be7 6.Qe2 Nd6 7.Bxc6 bxc6 8.dxe5 Nb7 9.c4 0Ė0 10.Nc3 f6 11.Re1 fxe5 12.Qxe5 Bf6 13.Qg3 Nc5 14.Bg5 Nd3 15.Re3 Nxb2 16.Rae1 Bxg5 17.Nxg5 Qf6 18.Rf3 Qd8 19.Nce4 Ba6 20.Nxh7 Rxf3 21.gxf3 Kxh7 22.Ng5+ Kg8 23.Qh4 Bxc4 24.Qh7+ Kf8 25.Re5 Be6 26.Qh8+ Ke7 27.Qxg7+ Kd6 28.Ne4 checkmate 1Ė0

¬†Final scores (8 players,7 rounds) M.Carlsen (NOR¬† 2802) 13, L.McShane (ENG 2645) and V.Anand (IND 2804) 11, H.Nakamura (USA 2741) and V.Kramnik (RUS 2791) 10, M.Adams (ENG 2723) 8, D.Howell (ENG 2611) 4, N.Short (ENG 2680) 2. ¬†New top Live ratings ¬†- Carlsen 2814, Anand 2810, Aronian 2805, Kramnik 2784.¬† Grandmasters Gawain Jones (ENG 2575) and Simon Williams (ENG 2493) tied for first place with 7.5/9 in the main supporting event. Australian Open Champion Aleks Wohl (AUS 2424) finished on 4 points. WFM Shannon Oliver (AUS 1926) scored 3/9 in the womenís Invitational event in London.

¬†GM Alexandra Kosteniuk (RUS 2507) the defending champion was knocked out 1.5-2.5¬† by WGM Lufei Ruan (CHN 2480) in the third round of the World Womenís Championship in Hatay,Turkey. Players from China won three of the four quarter-final matches with only WGM Wenjun Ju (CHN 2524) losing to the highest rated player GM Humpy Koneru (IND 2600).¬† Koneru ¬†lost 0.5-1.5 ¬†to GM Yifan Hou (CHN 2591)rated second ¬†in a semi-final match . The four- game World Title Match between¬† 16-year-old Yifan Hou (CHN) and 23-year-old Lufei Ruan (CHN) will be played Monday-Thursday with tie-breaks on Friday if needed.

 Kevin Willathgamuwa of Sydney was second with 8/9 in the under 7 division of the Asian schools championships in Colombo, Sri Lanka.  Rowan Willathgamuwa scorced 5.5/9 in the under 9 division.  Peter Svidler 2722 leads  the 63rd Russian Championship in Moscow (12 players,11 rounds,2706 av rating) with 5/7.  Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (FRA 2703) won the 349 player, European Blitz(3m+2 spm) in Warsaw with 22/26. Vassily Ivanchuk (UKR 2764) was second on 20 points.  Fifteen players share the lead with 7/8 in the 723 player European Rapidplay (15 min+10spm).                                                                                                  

 Stephen Solomon of Queensland scored seven wins and two draws to win the Australasian Masters in Melbourne with a 2661 performance rating. Bobby Cheng of Melbourne the world under- 12 champion in 2009 finished in second place half-a-point behind the 2450 performance rating required for an international master result. Final scores (10 players, 9 rounds) -  IM S.Solomon (AUS 2397) 8: FM B.Cheng (AUS 2316) 6:  IM J.Morris (AUS 2240), FM E.Teichmann (ENG 2388), IM M.Rujevic (AUS 2296), FM V.Smirnov (RUS 2379), FM M.Illingworth (AUS 2304) all 5:  C.Gorka (ENG 2179) 3.5, FM M.Steadman (NZL 2285) 2:  FM E.Levi (AUS 2228) 0.5.

 Johny Bolens won the Easts Leagues Spring Challenge at Bondi Junction with 7.5/9 half-a-point ahead of Francisco Plaza and Dr Vladimir Zeldovich.  The Australian Open and supporting events starting on 2 Jan 2011 at Norths,Cammeray has so far attracted 124  entries.   

Luke Leads in London

Peter Parr (13/12/10)

Luke McShane took the early lead in the London Classic by defeating World number 2 Magnus Carlsen in the following spectacular game in the first round.

McShane,L (2645) - Carlsen,M (2802) [A37]¬† 1.c4 c5 2.g3 g6 3.Bg2 Bg7 4.Nc3 Nc6 5.Nf3 d6 6.0Ė0 Nh6 7.d4 cxd4 8.Bxh6 Bxh6 9.Nxd4 Ne5 (dubious,9..Bd7)10.Qb3 0Ė0 11.Rfd1 Nd7 12.Qa3 a5 13.b4 Ra6 14.b5 Ra8 15.e3 a4 16.Rab1 Bg7 17.Ne4 Qb6 18.Nc6 Re8 19.Nb4 f5 (best) 20.Nc3 Qc5 (e6 was better) 21.Nxa4 Qa7 22.Na6! bxa6 23.b6 Nxb6 24.Rxb6 Rb8 25.c5 Be6 26.Rdb1 dxc5 27.Rb7 Rxb7 28.Rxb7 Qa8 29.Nxc5 Qc8 30.Qxa6 Bf7 31.Bc6 Rd8 32.Nd7 Rxd7 33.Bxd7 Qc1+ 34.Qf1 Qxf1+ 35.Kxf1 Bc4+ 36.Kg1 Bxa2 37.Ba4! e5 38.f3! Bh6 39.Bb3+ 1Ė0

¬†World Champion Viswanathan Anand joined McShane in the lead after four rounds with two wins and two draws each. Former World Champion Vladimir Kramnik was unable to beat McShane in round three with rook and bishop versus rook and a draw was agreed after a marathon 139 moves each. World no 1¬† Anand beat Carlsen in 77 moves in round three.¬† Progress scores after round 4 (8 players,7 rounds Ė 3 points win,1 point draw) V.Anand (IND 2804),L.McShane(ENG 2645) 8, V.Kramnik (RUS 2791) 7,M.Carlsen(NOR 2802) 6,H.Nakamura(USA 2741) and M.Adams(ENG 2723) 5,D.Howell(ENG 2611) 2,N.Short(ENG 2680) 1

¬†Australian Open Champion IM Aleks Wohl (AUS 2424) has scored 3/4 in the supporting FIDE Open event. Top seeds are GM B.Avrukh(ISR 2625),GM A.Gupta(IND 2600),GM G.Jones(ENG 2575). WFM Shannon Oliver(AUS 1926) has scored 1/4 but defeated top seed IM Susan Lalic (ENG 2294) in the Womenís Invitational event in London.¬† European Champion 20-year-old Ian Nepomniachtchi (2720) the fifth seed was the only player to win his first round game in the¬† 63rd Russian Championship in Moscow (12 players, 2706 av rating, 11 rounds).¬†¬†¬† The Womenís World Championship in Hatay, Turkey is a 64-player knockout tournament with the winners of the two-game mini matches (followed by rapid-play off if needed) qualifying a player to the next round.¬† Huang Qian(CHN) beat ex world ¬†champion Antoaneta Stefanova¬† (BUL)¬† 3-1 in round 2. ¬†¬†Four players have so far qualified for the quarter-final matches after round 3 Ė Humpy Koneru(IND),Katerina Lahno(UKR),Ju Wenjun(CHN),Zhao Xue(CHN) with the other four to be determined by ¬†tie-break matches.¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†

¬†Progress scores of the Australian juniors (both from NSW) competing in the Asian Schools championships in Colombo, Sri Lanka.¬† Under 9 (43 players,9 rounds) Ė Rowan Willathgamuwa¬† 5.5/8 in 5th place . Under 7 (22 players,9 rounds) Ė Kevin Willathgamuwa 7/8 in 2nd place.¬† International Master Stephen Solomon of Queensland has won the Australasian Masters in Melbourne with a two point lead and only one round left to play. Progress scores after round 8 (10 players,9 rounds, IM norm 6.5/9) -¬† IM S.Solomon (AUS 2397) 7, FM B.Cheng (AUS 2316), FM M.Illingworth (AUS 2304), FM E.Teichmann (ENG 2388) 5, IM M.Rujevic (AUS 2296), FM V.Smirnov (RUS 2379), IM J.Morris (VIC 2240) 4, C.Gorka (ENG 2179) 3.5, FM M.Steadman (NZL 2285) 2, FM E.Levi (AUS 2228) 0.5.

 North Sydney Boys HS won the Secondary Open Australian Schools Championship in Perth, Hornsby Girls HS were 4th in the Secondary Girls, Sydney Grammar 2nd in the Primary Open and Abbotsleigh Girls Primary 3rd= in the Primary Girls.

Newcastle University (WIM Heather Richards ENG 2150 scored 5.5/6 on top board) won the NSW Country Teams Championship scoring 15/18 ahead of Newcastle Coalfields on 12.5 points followed by Gosford and Coffs Harbour on 11.5/18.    FIDE master John Curtis outclassed the field by winning all seven games in the Gosford Open.   There are 80 early entries so far (early entries close today 13 December) in the Australian Open Championship and supporting tournaments at Norths,Cammeray,Sydney starting on 2 January 2011. The top seeds to date in the main event are GM Z.Zhao 2585, IM G.Xie 2478, FM M.Illingworth 2304, FM J.Ikeda 2262, IM V.Feldman 2262 and IM I.Berezina-Feldman 2238

London  Classic

Peter Parr (6/12/10)

¬†The London Classic, the strongest tournament ever in Great Britain¬† (8 players,7 rounds) ¬†starts on Wednesday. The players are¬†¬† World Champion and World no 1 Viswanathan Anand (India),World no 2 Magnus Carlsen (Norway), World no 4 ex-World Champion Vladimir Kramnik (Russia), USA no 1 Hikaru Nakamura and Englandís four highest rated grandmasters¬† Michael Adams, Nigel Short, Luke McShane and David Howell .¬† WFM Shannon Oliver (AUS 1926) will be competing in the Womenís Invitational event in London.

¬†¬†¬† Oceania Champion WIM Arianne Caoili (AUS 2242) did not arrive for her first match game against WGM Wenjun Ju (CHN 2524) on Saturday and lost on forfeit¬† in the Womenís World Championship in Hatay, Turkey .¬† The top six seeds in the 64- player knockout event -¬† GM A.Kosteniuk ( RUS 2507,the defending champion), GM H.Koneru (IND 2600),GM Y.Hou (CHN 2591), GM T.Kosintseva (RUS 2581),GM N.Dzagnidze(GEO 2551) and ex-world champion GM A.Stefanova (BUL 2548) all won their first round games. ¬†Yifan Hou of China (WFM at age 9) now aged sixteen became the youngest ever female at the age of 14 years and six months to qualify for the GM title.

 GM Y.Hou (CHN 2591) v WIM C.Heredia Serrano (ECU 2087) 1 e4 c6 2 d4 d5 3 Nc3 dxe4 4 Nxe4 Bf5 5 Ng3 Bg6 6 h4 h6 7 Nf3 Nd7 8 h5 Bh7 9 Bd3 Bxd3 10 Qxd3 e6 11 Bd2 Ngf6 12 0-0-0 Be7 13 Ne4 Nxe4 14 Qxe4 Nf6 15 Qd3 b5 16 Ne5 Qd5 17 Kb1 0-0 18 g4 Nd7 19 Nf3 c5 20 g5 hxg5 21 Rdg1 c4 22 Qe3 b4 23 Bxb4 Bxb4 24 Rxg5 f5 25 h6 Rf7 26 hxg7 Rxg7 27 Rhg1 Bf8 28 Rxg7+ Bxg7 29 Qh6 Kf8 30 Rxg7 Ke8 31 Qh4 Qd6 32 Ng5 Qb4 33 Qh5+ Kd8 34 Nxe6+ Kc8 35 Qe8+  1-0.    Armenia (winners of the 2006 and 2008 Olympiads) won the World Youth Under-16 Olympiad last week  in Burdur, Turkey.

 For the Australian Chess Federation December Rating period there were 122  tournaments rated (90  classic , 32   rapid) and 8967  games of which  6074  were in the ACF Classic rating system and  2893  were in the ACF Rapid Rating system. 

Top 10 - GM Z.Zhao (NSW  2579), GM D.Smerdon (ACT 2488), IM G.Xie (NSW 2463), IM A.Wohl (NSW 2414), GM D.Johansen (VIC 2362), FM J.Sales (NSW 2326), IM G.Lane (NSW 2319), IM S.Solomon (QLD  2315), FM E.Teichmann (VIC 2312), IM I.Goldenberg (VIC 2306).    Over 80 - W.Leonhardt (WA 1838), over 70 - FM A.Flatow (NSW 2106), over 60- IM M.Rujevic (VIC 2224), U20 -  M.Ly (QLD 2288), U18 - FM M. Illingworth (NSW 2284), U16 and U14 - FM B.Cheng (VIC 2207), U12 - A.Pan (NSW 1858), U10 -  A.Smirnov (NSW 1838) .  Women - WIM A.Caoili (QLD 2167), IM I.Berezina-Feldman (NSW 2047),  WIM B.Dekic (NSW 1949), WIM A.Jule (QLD 1883), WFM E.Guo (ACT 1856), A.Musaeva (NSW 1732). Girls U20 - WFM E.Guo (ACT 1856). Busiest - A.Smirnov (NSW 1838) - 60 games, N.Greenwood (NSW 1407) - 48 games. Top improver P.Drastik (NSW 1532) up 198.

 Results of the first round of the Australasian Masters at Box Hill Chess Club, Melbourne (10 players,9 rounds) -  FM V.Smirnov (NSW 2273) 1 v  FM  M.Illingworth(2284) 0, FM E.Levi (VIC 2173) 0 v FM  B.Cheng (VIC 2207) 1, C.Gorka (ENG 2082) 1 v FM M.Steadman (NZL 2155) 0, IM M.Rujevic (VIC 2224) 0 v FM E.Teichmann (VIC 2312) 1, IM J.Morris (VIC 2190) v IM S.Solomon (QLD 2315) postponed.

 Australian Champion GM Zong-Yuan Zhao (NSW) leads the 2010 ACF Grand Prix just ahead of IM George Xie (NSW) with the final two events to be held  later this month. The  Surfers Paradise  9 round  ACF GP  Gold Coast International 26-30 Dec  has so far attracted Zhao and Xie and 51 entries  from seven countries.    The Canterbury Summer Swiss ACF GP at Box Hill Chess Club  in Melbourne  27-29 Dec will be played over seven rounds .   The 11 round FIDE rated Australian Open, 11 round  Australian Minor Under 1600, and 7 round Norths Classic (Under 1800) commence on 2  January 2011 at Norths, Cammeray, Sydney with early entries closing on Monday 13 December. The Australian Lightning Championship will be held on Saturday afternoon 8 January 2011 .    

China Wins Gold in Asian Games

Peter Parr (29/11/10)

¬†The Chinese Menís and Womenís Teams won the gold medals in the Asian Games¬† in Guangzhou, China. The Menís team led by Wang Yue (2756) and Wang Hao (2727) won all seven preliminary matches and defeated Iran 2.5-1.5 in the semi-final and¬† Philippines 3.5-0.5 in the final. The Womenís team won six preliminary matches and drew 2-2 with India. China beat Vietnam 3.5-0.5 in the semi-final and Uzbekistan 2.5-1.5 in the final. GM Hou Yifan (2591) scored an overall 6.5/7.¬†¬†¬†¬† IM Alisa Galliamova (RUS 2487) won the 60th Russian Womenís Championship in Moscow.

¬†¬† Oceania Womenís Champion WM Arianne Caoili (AUS 2242) seeded 55 plays a two-game knockout match against WGM Wenjun Ju (CHN 2524) seeded 10 on 4-5 December in the 64-player World Womenís Championship in Hatay (near Istanbul) Turkey.¬† Caoili scored 3 /8 against veteran grandmasters¬† V. Hort (GER 2473) , W.Uhlmann (GER 2412 ),D.Velimirovic¬† (SRB 2425 ) and L. Portisch (HUN 2544 ) in the Czech Coal Match in Prague. The womenís team won the match 18-14 with GM Humpy Koneru (IND 2600) scoring 6/8.

¬†Caoili,Arianne (2242) - Velimirovic,Dragoljub (2425) [A48]¬† 1.d4 Nf6 2.Nf3 g6 3.Bf4 d6 4.h3 Bg7 5.e3 0Ė0 6.Be2 b6 7.0Ė0 Bb7 8.Bh2 Nbd7 9.Nbd2 Qe8 10.Rc1 e5 11.c4 e4 12.Ne1 Qe7 13.b4 c5 14.Nc2 Rad8 15.Nb1 cxd4 16.Nxd4 Ne5 17.Nc3 Rd7 18.Qa4 a6 19.Qb3 Rc7 20.Na4 Nfd7 21.Rfd1 Rfc8 22.Rc2 Nd3 23.Bg4 N3e5 24.Be2 h5 25.Nb2 Nc5 26.bxc5 bxc5 27.Qa3 cxd4 28.exd4 Nf3+ 29.gxf3 Qg5+ 30.Kh1 Qh4 31.d5 Qxh3 32.Qe3 Re7 33.fxe4 Qxe3 34.fxe3 Rxe4 35.Bxd6 Rxe3 36.c5 Rce8 37.c6 Bc8 38.Bf1 Bf5 39.Rf2 Bg4 40.Rd3 Rxd3 41.Nxd3 Rd8 42.Ne5 Bxe5 43.Bxe5 Rxd5 44.Bf6 ! Rc5 45.Rd2 1Ė0

¬†The Summer Open tournament¬† at St. George Leagues Club commences tomorrow evening Tuesday 30th¬† November. Grandmaster Ian Rogers will conduct a lecture at the Sydney Chess Centre, Burwood ďWhat makes Magnus Carlsen so good?Ē on Wednesday¬† evening 1st¬† December.¬† Leading final scores in the NSW State Lightning Championship (5 mins each,42¬† players,11 rounds): FM M.Illingworth(2628) 10,IM G.Xie(2447) 9.5,Dr V.Smirnov(2346) 8.5,B.Mandla(2071) 8,FM J.Curtis(2285) 7.5. The rapid play ratings show that Max Illingworth is in a class of his own in rapid and lightning games.¬† He scored 10 wins and one loss to IM George Xie.

 The AGM of the NSW Chess Association at Ryde-Eastwood Leagues Club on Saturday afternoon elected the following executive: President -  Bill Gletsos  ; Vice-President - Shane Burgess ; Secretary - Tom Accola; Treasurer - Norm Greenwood. Norths defeated St.George 24.5-23.5  in the second leg of the big board match last Tuesday evening. St George won on the top two boards. T.Stevens (2004) bt FM M.Illingworth (2333) and Dr C.Zworestine (1990) bt FM M.Stephens (2331).  Norths regained the John Kellner/Terrey Shaw Trophy with an overall score of 55.5-43.5.  The NSW Country Teams Championship with three players per team on December 4-5 over six rounds will be held at Panthers Newcastle

 The Vikings Tuggeranong Chess Club ACT GP  weekender (55 players,7 rounds) was won by  A.Bliznyuk (ACT 1929) and FM E.Ambrus (ACT 2185) each scoring 6 points.  ACT Champion Andrey Bliznyuk won his first six games but lost to Endre Ambrus in a sharp tactical struggle in the final round. Ambrus won the 5 games he played and received two half-point byes. Other leading scores -  B.Mandla (NSW 1988), FM J.Ikeda (ACT 2324), A.Setiabudi (ACT 1768) 5.5, FM M.Illingworth (NSW 2333), FM V.Smirnov (NSW 2280), A.Smirnov (NSW 1916) 5 .  

Aronian Wins World Blitz

Peter Parr (22/11/10

Levon Aronian the 2009 World Rapid Champion is the new World Blitz Champion. The grueling 38 round event was held over three days. Aronian and Magnus Carlsen,the defending champion and top seed, each led the field with 10/14 after the first dayís play. Aronian emerged as clear leader after day 2 with 18.5/28 ahead of Carlsen in second place on 17 points. Aronian increased his lead to a full three points with five rounds to play¬† but lost his last two games. Meanwhile Teimour Radjabov after a slow start scored 8/10 on the final day missing first place by only half-a-point.

Leading final scores (20 players, 38 rounds, 3 minutes plus 2 seconds per move )  - L.Aronian(ARM 2801) 24.5, T.Radjabov(AZE 2744) 24, M.Carlsen(NOR 2802) 23.5, B.Gelfand (ISR 2741) and H.Nakamura (USA 2741) 21.5, S.Karjakin(RUS 2760) and V.Kramnik(RUS 2791) 20.5.  Former World Champion Ruslan Ponomariov(UKR 2744) finished last on 12.5 which shows the strength of the event which  was held in the Gum Department Store,Red Square, Moscow just after the Tal Memorial Tournament.   FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov and 12th World Champion Anatoly Karpov( both Russia) attended the opening ceremony when Magnus Carlsen was awarded the Chess Oscar for 2009.

Shakhriyar Mamedyarov only tied for first place after losing his one game in the last round against Boris Gelfand in the Tal Memorial in Moscow.¬† Karjakin,Sergey (2760) - Kramnik,V (2791) [C42] rd 8¬† .1e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nxe5 d6 4.Nf3 Nxe4 5.Nc3 Nxc3 6.dxc3 Be7 7.Be3 0Ė0 8.Qd2 Nd7 9.0Ė0Ė0 Ne5 10.h4 c6 11.c4 Be6 12.Ng5 Bf5 (A dubious novelty Ė more usual is 12..Nxc4)13.Kb1 Re8 14.f3 h6 15.Be2 d5 16.g4 Bg6 17.f4! dxc4 18.Qc3 Nd3 19.f5! Bxg5 20.fxg6 Rxe3 21.gxf7+(21 Qxc4 was stronger)¬† Kf8 22.Qxc4 Rxe2? 23.hxg5 Qxg5 24.Qxd3 Qe3 25.Qh7 Qe4 26.Qg8+ Ke7 27.Qxg7 Qxc2+ 28.Ka1 Rf8 29.Rhf1 Rd2 30.Rfe1+ Re2 31.Qc3 Kxf7 32.Qf3+ 1Ė0

Shirov,A (2735) - Eljanov,P (2742) [B12] rd 8¬† 1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.e5 Bf5 4.Nf3 e6 5.Be2 c5 6.Be3 Nd7 7.0Ė0 Ne7 8.c4 dxc4 9.Na3 c3 10.Nb5 Nd5 11.Nxc3 Nxc3 12.bxc3 Be7 13.dxc5 Bxc5? (correct was 13..0-0) 14.Qa4 Bxe3 15.Rad1! a6 16.fxe3 b5 17.Qf4 Qc7 18.g4 Bg6 19.h4 h5 20.Rd6 hxg4 21.Nd4 Nc5 22.Qxg4 Qe7 23.Bf3 Rxh4 24.Bc6+ Kf8 25.Qxg6 1Ė0

Mikhail Tal was world champion 1960-1961 and was regarded as the greatest attacking player of all time. Final scores (10 players, 2757 average, 9 rounds,classical time control) - L.Aronian (ARM 2801), S.Karjakin (RUS 2760), S.Mamedyarov (AZE 2763) all  5.5: A.Grischuk (RUS 2771), H.Nakamura (USA 2741), H.Wang (CHN 2727) 5: V.Kramnik (RUS 2791) 4.5: B.Gelfand (ISR 2741) 3.5: A.Shirov (ESP 2735) 3: P.Eljanov (UKR 2742) 2.5.

Former World Champions Anatoly Karpov and Garry Kasparov (both Russia) are giving lectures and simultaneous exhibitions at the Centenary Celebrations of the University of ¬†Mexico.¬† The¬† Individual Rapid Championships (25 mins plus 10 secs per move)were held at the 16th Asian Games in Guangzhou, China. ¬†Rustam Kasimdzhanov (UZB 2685) World Champion in 2004 won the Gold Medal on countback from Le Quang Liem(VIE 2689) who won the Silver Medal both scoring 7.5/9. Bu Xiangzhi(CHN 2680) won the Bronze Medal on countback from M.Kazhgaleyev(KAZ 2623) on 6.5 points. ¬†Hou Yifan (CHN 2591) conceded only half-a-point to easily win the Gold Medal in the Asian Womenís Rapid.

The NSW State Lightning Championship over 11 rounds (5 minutes per player) will be held at Ryde-Eastwood Leagues Club commencing at 11am on Saturday 27 November. The annual general meeting of the NSWCA at the same venue starts at 2:30pm.

Mamedyarov leads Tal Memorial

Peter Parr (15/11/10)

 Shakhriyar Mamedyarov has taken the sole lead in the Tal Memorial in Moscow by defeating Wang Hao the joint leader in the eighth round. Mamedyarov is the only player to win the World Junior twice (in 2003 and 2005) and this result in Moscow will increase his world ranking from no 8 to no 5. GM Mamedyarov has two sisters who are women grandmasters. The top five players are all undefeated and performing above 2800.

¬†Aronian,L (2801) - Gelfand,B (2741) [D43]¬† 1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Nc3 e6 5.Qd3 Nbd7 6.g3 Bd6 7.Bg2 0Ė0 8.0Ė0 dxc4 9.Qxc4 e5 10.Rd1 Qe7 11.Bg5 h6 12.Nh4! Nb6 (after 12.. hxg5 13 Nf5 Qe6 14Qxe6 fxe6 15 Nxd6 wins) 13.Bxf6 Qxf6 14.Qb3 Bc7 15.d5 cxd5 16.Bxd5 Kh8 17.Rac1 Qe7 18.Qc2 Rb8 19.a4 Bh3 20.Bg2 Be6 21.a5 (white has a strong initiative) Na8 22.Nd5 Bxd5 23.Rxd5 Qe6 24.b4 Bd8 25.Nf5 g6 26.Nd6 Nc7 27.Rdd1 b6 28.Nb7! Na6 29.Rd6 Qg4 30.Qb2 Qxb4 31.Qxe5+ Kh7 32.Rd7 Bg5 33.Rcd1 Nc5 34.Nxc5 Qxc5 35.Qxc5 bxc5 36.Rxa7 c4 37.a6 c3 38.Rc7 Rbc8 39.Rxc8 Rxc8 40.e3 Be7 41.Rc1 1Ė0 (The a pawn wins the game. If 41 ..Rc7 42 Bb7 Bc5 43 Rxc3).

¬†Progress scores after round 8 (10 players, 2757 average, 9 rounds) Ė¬† S.Mamedyarov (AZE 2763) 5.5, L.Aronian (ARM 2801), S.Karjakin (RUS 2760) 5, A.Grischuk (RUS 2771), H.Nakamura (USA 2741), H.Wang (CHN 2727) 4.5, V.Kramnik (RUS 2791) 3.5, A.Shirov (ESP 2735) 3, B.Gelfand (ISR 2741)2.5, P.Eljanov (UKR 2742) 2.¬†¬† The World Blitz Championship (3 mins plus 2 secs per move) will be held in Moscow this week Tuesday-Thursday. Twenty players including M. Carlsen (NOR 2802),L. Aronian (ARM 2801), V. Kramnik (RUS 2791),A.Grischuk (RUS 2771),S.Mamedyarov(AZE 2763),S.Karjakin(RUS 2760) will compete in the 38 round event (double round robin) .

¬†The following brevity was played in the Spice Cup(USA) last week.¬† GM Robson,Ray aged 16 (USA 2539) Ė GM Perelshteyn,Eugene (USA 2528) [C51] 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.b4 Bxb4 5.c3 Be7 6.d4 Na5 7.Nxe5 Nxc4 8.Nxc4 d5 9.exd5 Qxd5 10.Ne3 Qa5 11.0Ė0 Nf6 12.c4 0Ė0 13.Bd2 Qh5 14.Nd5! 1Ė0 white wins a piece.¬†¬† 84 players including 23 grandmasters from 25 countries are competing in the Asian Games Individual Rapid Chess Championship in Guangzhou,China. Each country is restricted to two players(men and women). The top seed Le Quang Liem(VIE 2689) has won his first two games.

¬†The Womenís World Championship will be played in Hatay (near Istanbul), Turkey from 3-24 Dec 2010. WM Arianne Caoili (AUS 2242) the Oceania Champion seed 55th has been paired against 10th seed WGM Wenjun Ju (CHN 2524) in a first round two game classical match with rapid tiebreaks. The tournament format is six rounds of knock-out matches for the 64 players.

¬†Leading final scores in the Ford Memorial tournament at Norths ,Cammeray ( 71 players, 9 rounds) - ¬†Dr V.Smirnov (2290) 8.5, ¬†B.Mandla (1988) 7.5, A.Bird (2131) and FM G.Canfell (2315) 7,¬† P.Glissan (1669) 6.5.¬† Ernest Dorn has died in Sydney at the age of 79. He was Secretary of the NSW Chess Association 40 years ago and he organized the Sydney tour of ex-World Champion Max Euwe(NED). He arranged many simultaneous exhibitions in Sydney shopping centers and he supervised a successful¬† Guinness World Lightning Chess record in Bankstown. Dorn¬† was President of Cabra-Vale Diggers Chess Club where he held the Sydney Easter Cup ¬†until 2009. ¬†¬†Leading final scores in the Fisherís Ghost Open GP Weekender at Campbelltown (46 players, 7 rounds) - ¬†IM G.Xie (2461) 6.5, FM M.Illingworth (2333), A.Camer (1960) and FM V.Smirnov (2280) 5.5. ¬†¬†The next ACF GP event¬†¬† is The Vikings Tuggeranong Chess Club, ACT, seven round weekender 20-21 November.

Triple tie in Melbourne Cup

Peter Parr (8/11/10)

 The 61 player Melbourne Cup Yulgilbar-Think Big Australian Chess Grand Prix FIDE rated weekender resulted in a triple tie for first place between IM Mirko Rujevic (2225), FM Erik Teichmann (2329) and Justin Tan (1978 ,aged 13) each scoring 7 out of 9.  Four players IM James Morris (2203), IM Stephen Solomon (2335), FM Bobby Cheng (2227) and Svetozar Stojic (1882) were half a point behind on 6.5 .   A  6 - round rapid tournament will be held at the Sydney Chess Centre,Burwood on Wednesdays 10th and 17th November.

¬†Top ten players on the November World rating list Ė V.Anand IND 2804, ¬†M.Carlsen NOR 2802, ¬†L.Aronian ARM 2801, ¬†V.Kramnik RUS 2791, ¬†V.Topalov BUL 2786, ¬†A.Grischuk RUS 2771, ¬†V.Ivanchuk UKR ¬†2764, ¬†S.Mamedyarov AZE 2763, S.Karjakin RUS 2760, Y.Wang(CHN 2756). The average rating of the top 100 players is 2695. A player rated 2400 is ranked 2250 in the World.

 The super GM tournament in Nanjing, China won by Carlsen above Anand will be processed in the Jan 2011 FIDE rating list making Carlsen 2811 and Anand 2808.  Carlsen announced on Friday that he has decided to drop out of the current World Championship cycle. He had qualified for the eight player Candidates Matches scheduled to begin in March 2011 in Kazan,Russia. The winner of the Candidates will be the Challenger of Viswanathan Anand, the current World Champion. The most improved player is Polish GM Radoslaw Wojtaszek aged 23 who has risen to world No.20 at 2726 an increase of 89 rating points in 12 months.

¬†Women Ė J.Polgar HUN 2686, ¬†H.Koneru IND 2600, ¬†Y.Hou CHN 2591, ¬†T.Kosintseva RUS 2581, ¬†N.Kosintseva 2576. ¬†Leading Australians Ė GM Z.Zhao 2586, ¬†GM D.Smerdon 2531, ¬†IM G.Xie 2478, ¬†IM J.Gil 2444, ¬†IM A.Wohl 2424, ¬†GM D.Johansen 2419, ¬†IM S.Solomon 2397, ¬†IM I.Goldenberg 2388, ¬†IM G.Lane 2373, ¬†IM G.West 2360.¬† Women Ė WM A.Caoili 2242, ¬†IM I.Berezina 2238, ¬†T.Nguyen 2111, ¬†WM B.Dekic 2095, ¬†WM A.Jule 1970, ¬†WFM E.Guo 1965.

Country rank by average rating of the top ten Ė Russia 2731, Ukraine 2699, China 2652, France 2651, Israel 2642, USA 2640. ¬†Australia 2440 is ranked 56 out of 160 countries.

¬†Leading final scores in the World Seniors Championship (over 60) in Arco, Italy (224 players,11 rounds) in countback order - ¬†GM A.Vaisser(FRA 2507),GM V.Jansa(CZE 2499),GM V.Dydyshko(BLR 2547),GM L.Kaufman(USA 2413) all 8.5. Results of the 3 Australians Ė FM B.Jones 2079 ¬†¬†(place 143) 5, O.Korenevski ¬†1930 ¬†(place 149) 5, L.Benson 2032 (place 167) 4.5. ¬†WFM V.Smith (NZL 1827) scored 4/9 in the World Womenís Senior Championship.¬†¬† The four player Unive Crown Group tournament in Hoogeveen (NED) was won by Maxime Vachier Lagrave (FRA 2721) on 4.5/6 above Alexei Shirov (ESP 2749) 3.5, Anish Giri (NED 2677) 3 and Sergei Tiviakov (NED 2637) 1. ¬†Lagrave now aged 20 earned the Grandmaster title at the age of 14. Giri also became a GM at the age of 14 in 2009.

¬†Shirov,A (2749) - Vachier Lagrave,M (2721) [D86] Rd 4¬† 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5 4.cxd5 Nxd5 5.e4 Nxc3 6.bxc3 Bg7 7.Bc4 c5 8.Ne2 Nc6 9.Be3 0Ė0 10.0Ė0 Bd7 11.h4 Na5 12.Bd3 e5 13.Bg5 Qc7 14.dxe5 Rfe8 15.f4 Bg4 16.Qe1 h6 17.Bf6 Bxf6 18.exf6 Rad8 19.Qg3? (Better was 19.Bc2) 19...c4! 20.Qxg4 cxd3 21.Ng3 Nc4 22.e5 Ne3 23.Qf3 Nxf1 24.Rxf1 d2 25.Rd1 Qc4 26.Nf5 Rd3 27.Ne7+ Kh7 28.Qxb7 Red8 29.Qxa7 Rxc3 0Ė1

 The Champion of Azerbaijan Eltaj Safarli  rated 2607 and seeded 23rd  was outright first scoring 7.5/9 in the 275 player Chigorin Memorial Tournament  in St. Petersburg, Russia.  World no 3 Levon Aronian (ARM 2801) won his first round game against World no 4 Vladimir Kramnik (RUS 2791) in the Tal Memorial in Moscow. Alexander Grischuk seeded no 3 in the event beat Pavel Eljanov(UKR 2742).  Leading scores after round 2 (10 players, 2757 average, 9 rounds)- L.Aronian(ARM 2801), A.Grischuk(RUS 2771), S.Karjakin(RUS 2760), H.Nakamura(USA 2741), H.Wang(CHN 2727) 1.5

Carlsen Wins Nanjing

Peter Parr (1/11/10)

 Nineteen-year-old Magnus Carlsen has confirmed his status as the highest rated player in the world by winning the Pearl Spring Super-Grandmaster Tournament which finished on Saturday evening in Nanjing,China. Carlsen was undefeated in the ten round event and was well clear of his main rivals with 4/5 at the half-way stage. World Champion Viswanathan Anand took second place after defeating Etienne Bacrot in the last round and is currently ranked world no 2 on the daily updated live-ratings. Carlsen won the following game against former World Champion Veselin Topalov. 

¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Carlsen,M (2826) - Topalov,V (2803) [C84] ¬†¬†1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 a6 (The Berlin Ė a Topalov favourite) 4.Ba4 Nf6 5.0Ė0 Be7 6.d3 b5 7.Bb3 d6 8.a4 Rb8 9.axb5 axb5 10.Nbd2 0Ė0 11.Re1 Bd7 12.c3 Ra8 13.Rxa8 Qxa8 14.d4 h6 15.Nf1 Re8 16.Ng3 Qc8 17.Nh4 Bf8 ?! 18.Ng6! Na5 19.Nxf8 Rxf8 20.Bc2 Re8 21.f4 ! (leading to a strong kingside attack) Bg4 22.Qd3 exf4 ? (22.. Qb8 was better) 23.Bxf4 Nc4 24.Bc1 c5 25.Rf1 cxd4 26.cxd4 Qd8 27.h3 Be6 28.b3 Qa5 29.Kh2 Nh7 30.e5 g6 31.d5 Nxe5 32 dxe6! 1Ė0 (after 32.. Nxd3 33 exf7+¬† Kf8 34 Bxh6+ Ke7 35 fxe8 (Q) + Kxe8 36 Bxd3 wins).¬†¬† Final scores (6 players,2766 average rating ,10 rounds) :-¬† M.Carlsen (NOR 2826) 7, V.Anand (IND 2800) 6, E.Bacrot (FRA 2716) 5, V.Gashimov (AZE 2719) and ¬†V.Topalov (BUL 2803) 4.5, Wang Yue (CHN 2732) 3

 Grandmaster Alik Gershon (Israel) is the new official Guinness simultaneous chess world record holder. Gershon played 523 players in Rabin Square, Tel Aviv and after 18.5 hours he had scored 454 wins, 58 draws and 11 losses (86% - a minimum 80% score is required for a record). The previous record was held by GM Morteza Mahjoob (Iran) who scored 88.5% against 500 opponents in 18 hours in Tehran in August 2009.

¬†The World Youth Championships in Halkidiki, Greece was held over 11 rounds in 12 age and gender divisions with ¬†over 2500 people attending including 1387 players from 87 countries.¬† Azerbaijan won three of the twelve gold medals. FM S.Zierk (USA 2391) won the Under 18 boys event scoring 9.5/11 and a GM result¬† ahead of GM S.Ter-Sahakyan(ARM 2516) in second place on 8.5 points.¬†¬† Final scores of the six Australians coached by GM David Arutinian(GEO 2578)(total score 30/66):-¬†¬† Boys U8 Ė Kevin Willathgamuwa 7 (25th place)¬† , Boys U8 Ė Rowan Willathgamuwa¬† 6.5 , Boys U12 Ė Zachary Loh 5¬† , Boys U16 Ė Michael Addamo¬†¬† 4, Girls U14 Ė Abbie Kanagarajah 4 , Girls U16 Ė Miranda Webb-Liddle 3.5 . The six New Zealand juniors scored 26.5/66.¬†

¬†¬†¬†¬† Progress scores of the three Australians after five rounds of the World Seniors Championship (open for anyone aged 60 or over , 224 players from 45¬† countries) in Arco, Italy :-¬†¬† FM Brian Jones (2079) and Lachlan Benson (2032) 2.5, Oleg Korenevski (1930) 2 . Grandmaster Dusan Rajkovic (SRB 2443) leads the event with five consecutive wins.¬† WCM Vivien Smith(NZL 1827) has scored 1.5/4 in the World Womenís (over 50) Senior event. Smith has represented New Zealand in 15 chess Olympiads from 1978-2010.¬† ¬†WGM Margarita Voiska (BUL) holds the womenís¬† record of playing in 16 Olympiads.

¬†Progress scores in the Melbourne Cup FIDE rated weekender at Melbourne Chess Club 29 Oct- 2 Nov after 3 rounds (61 players, 6 rounds) :- ¬†International Masters Stephen Solomon (2335),M.Rujevic (2225) and James Morris (2203) all 3/3. The event is in the 2010 Yulgilbar Ė Think Big Australian Chess Grand Prix. ¬†GM Zong-Yuan Zhao(NSW) leads the GP after 44 of the 50 events ahead of IM George Xie(NSW) in second place and GM David Smerdon third.¬†¬† The next¬†¬† Grand Prix Weekender will be the Fisherís Ghost to be held at Campbelltown over seven rounds¬† 6-7 November with seven major prizes as well as divisional ratings prizes. ¬†FIDE Master¬† Dr Vladimir Smirnov leads the Ford Memorial (71 players,9 rounds) at Norths,Cammeray with 7.5/8

Carlsen no 1 in Nanjing

Peter Parr (25/10/10)

 World no 1 Magnus Carlsen is the early leader  after four rounds of the 3rd Pearl Spring Super GM Tournament in Nanjing, China.  

Carlsen,M (2826) - Bacrot,E (2716) [C45] ¬†(1) ¬†1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 exd4 4.Nxd4 Bc5 5.Nb3 Bb6 6.Nc3 Nf6 7.Qe2 0Ė0 (unusual) 8.Bg5 h6 9.Bh4!(N) a5 10.a4 Nd4 11.Qd3 Nxb3 12.cxb3 Re8 13.0Ė0Ė0 d6 14.Qc2 (white stands better) Bd7 15.Bc4 Be6 16.Rhe1 Qe7 17.e5! dxe5 18.Rxe5 Qf8 19.Bxf6 gxf6 20.Re2 Qg7 21.Bxe6! (forceful play. Carlsen calculates a long way ahead)¬† Rxe6 22.Rxe6 fxe6 23.Rd3 Kh8 24.Rg3 Qh7 25.Qd2 Bc5 26.Ne4 Be7 27.Rh3 Kg7 28.Qd7 Kf7 29.Ng5+!¬† fxg5 30.Rf3+ Kg8 31.Qxe6+ Kh8 32.Rf7 Bd6 33.Rxh7+ Kxh7 34.Qf7+ Kh8 35.g3 Ra6 36.Kb1 Bb4 37.f4 gxf4 38.gxf4 1Ė0

 Bacrot reached a better endgame position with a bishop and two pawns v four pawns against World Champion Vishy Anand in round four. The ending should have been drawn but Anand miscalculated and lost leaving Bacrot in second place just half-a-point behind Carlsen who had to work hard to draw with Vugar Gashimov.  Progress scores after round 4 (6 players, 2766 average rating , 10 rounds) -  M.Carlsen (NOR 2826) 3, E.Bacrot (FRA 2716) 2.5, V.Anand (IND 2800) 2, V.Gashimov (AZE 2719), V.Topalov (BUL 2803), Wang Yue (CHN 2732)  all 1.5

¬†The European Club Cup was held in Plovdiv, Bulgaria. ¬†¬†There were 49 teams with players from¬† 48 countries (144 GMís including 22 rated above 2700, 80 over 2600, 83 IM, 46 FM).

Gold Medals to Economist 1 (RUS) 13/14 match points (Eljanov UKR 2761 bd 1,World Junior U20 Champion 2010 D.Andreikin bd 4 perf 2855 ), Silver Medals to Yugra RUS 11/14,Bronze Medals to Chernigiv ¬†UKR 11/14. ¬†Levon Aronian ( 2783 Mika Yerevan) scored 4.5/6 with a 2884 performance rating.¬† The top three on the World Daily live ratings are now Carlsen 2807, Anand 2802, Aronian 2801 . Last week after Bilbao,Spain ¬†Anand had briefly overtaken Carlsen . Women :- Monte-Carlo led by Koneru (IND), Hou (CHN), Muzychuk (SLO) and Cramling (SWE) Ė rated 1,2,5,8 from the women in the event won the Gold Medals ¬†in Plovdiv.¬†¬†¬†

 The World Youth Championships in Halkidiki, Greece has attracted a record 1387 players (7 grandmasters and 20 International Masters)  in 12 divisions from 87 countries.  GM  S.Ter-Sahakyan (ARM 2516), V.Belous (RUS 2498) and  FM S.Zierk (USA 2391) lead the Under 18  boys section with 4/4.  Grandmaster Richard Rapport (HUN 2523) the top seed in the boys under 14 division has scored  only 2.5/4 which shows the very high standard .  Progress scores of the six Australians after four rounds :-   Boys U8 - Kevin Willathgamuwa 3,   Boys U8 - Rowan Willathgamuwa 2,  Boys U12 - Zachary Loh  1.5 , Boys U16 - Michael Addamo 1.5,  Girls U14 - Abbie Kanagarajah 1.5 ,  Girls U16 - Miranda Webb-Liddle 0.5

Bobby Cheng of Melbourne won the World Under 12 Championship at last yearís event in Antalya, Turkey.¬† The World Seniors Championship open to all players aged over 60 starts tomorrow Tuesday in Arco, Italy. ¬†¬†Lachlan Benson, FM Brian Jones and Oleg Korenevski from Australia are among the 247 entries from 50 countries.

 Leading final scores in the Grand Prix weekender at Central Coast Leagues Club, Gosford (30 players, 7 rounds) -  FM V.Smirnov (2280) 6 , B.Mandla (1988), H.Rachmadi (1664) 5.5 , T.Stevens (2004) 5.

The next GP event is the Melbourne Cup FIDE rated nine round weekender 29 Oct Ė 02¬† November at Melbourne Chess Club (over 50 early entries).¬† Australiaís leading Grandmaster Zong - Yuan Zhao will be conducting a ďMaster ClassĒ lecture on his recent Olympiad Experience on Wednesday evening at Sydney Chess Centre, Burwood. Tel 97451170 for details.

Tindall  Wins NSW Championship

Peter Parr (18/10/10)

 FIDE Master and Trainer Brett Tindall has won the Integra NSW State Championship at Burwood after winning his last round game against Andy Wong. Andrew Bird had a slightly better endgame against Nicholas Kordahi and eventually won. James Watson started the event with only one out of three but scored 5.5 points in his last 6 games. Tindall had started the event in fine style winning his first six games including victories over his two main rivals and former title-holders Greg Canfell and Andrew Bird. Tindall was NSW Junior U-18 Champion in 1995 and he beat Grandmaster Simen Agdestein (NOR) the trainer of World no 1 Carlsen in 20 moves in Canberra 1997. Tindall won the 1998 City of Sydney Title  and he is the director of the Sydney Academy of Chess at Burwood with 16 years coaching experience.

 Twelve-year-old Penelope Drastik of Wollongong beat NSW Chess Association Treasurer Norman Greenwood in the last round and was placed 6-10th equal with 5.5/9. Penelope was taught by her father Victor who was the NSW State Under- 13 Champion in 1968.  Leading final scores (38 players, 9 rounds) -  FM B.Tindall (2173) 7.5,  A.Bird (2131) and J.Watson (1948) 6.5, FM G.Canfell (2315) and N.Kordahi (1701)  6 .   Andrew Bird and FM Vladimir Smirnov have each won 5 games in the first 6 rounds of the Ford Memorial tournament at Norths. Bird successfully defended the tricky endgame of Rook v Rook and Bishop for the required 50 moves each against Smirnov. Norths have retained the Centenary Shield by defeating Harbord Diggers 21-15.

 IM Stephen Solomon won the 56 - player Wendy Terry Memorial GP weekender in Brisbane. The next GP weekender is in Burnie,Tasmania 23-24 October. The World Youth Championships in Halkidiki,Greece starts on Wednesday with over 1400 participants in 12 divisions (U18,16,14,12,10,8 for boys and girls) from over 80 countries including six Australian representatives. The Bilbao,Spain Grand Slam Masters Final was won by former World Champion Vladimir Kramnik. He defeated World no 1 Magnus Carlsen in the following game in the first round.

¬†Kramnik,Vladimir (2780) - Carlsen,Magnus (2826) [E15]¬†¬† 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.g3 Ba6 5.Qa4 Bb7 6.Bg2 c5 7.dxc5 bxc5 8.0Ė0 Be7 9.Nc3 0Ė0 10.Rd1 Qb6 11.Bf4 Rd8 12.Rab1 h6 13.Qb5 (N) A novelty. Kramnik played 13 a3 against Bacrot in Dortmund 2009¬†¬† Bc6 14.Qxb6 axb6 15.b3 g5? 16.Bxb8! (preventing black from moving his knight to a6 and b4) Raxb8 17.Ne5 Bxg2 18.Kxg2 Rbc8 19.e4 d6 20.Nd3 Kf8 21.h3 Nd7 22.f4 Nb8 23.Na4 Nd7 24.Nf2 Ra8 25.Rd2 Ra5 26.Nc3 Nb8 27.Rbd1 Nc6 28.Nb5 gxf4 29.gxf4 d5? (better was 29...Nd4) 30.exd5 exd5 31.cxd5 Rxb5 32.dxc6 Rc8 33.Ng4 Rxc6 34.Ne5 Re6 35.Kf3 Ra5? (35...Rb4 was correct although white is still better)¬† 36.Rg2 f6 37.Nc4 Ra7 38.f5 Rc6 39.a4 Rb7 40.Rg6 h5 41.Rdg1 Ke8 42.Ne5! Rc8 43.Rg8+ Bf8 44.Ng6 Rf7 45.Rd1 1Ė0¬† Black is in zugwang and loses material.¬†

 The average rating of the players in the tournament at 2789 was the highest ever. 19-year-old Carlsen became officially the youngest person in history to be rated world no 1 in January 2010 but his results at the Olympiad in Siberia and Bilbao leave him in second place yesterday on the live world ratings just one rating point behind the current World Champion Viswanathan Anand (Topalov lost 17 rating points at the Olympiad). The new official World Rating List will be published on 1st November.

 Final scores(4 players,6 rounds) :- V.Kramnik (RUS 2780) 4 (2 wins,4 draws) , V.Anand (IND 2800) 3.5 (1 win,5 draws), M.Carlsen (NOR 2826) 2.5, A.Shirov(ESP 2749) 2

The Pearl Spring Tournament in Nanjing,China (6 players,average rating 2766) will be held from 18-30 October. The six players in the double round robin event are :- M.Carlsen (NOR 2826), V.Topalov (BUL 2803), V.Anand(IND 2800 ) Ė the top three world rated players and¬† Wang Yue (CHN 2732), V.Gashimov(AZE 2719) and ¬†E.¬† Bacrot (FRA 2716).

Kramnik beats Carlsen

Peter Parr  (11/10/10)

Former World Champion Vladimir Kramnik (RUS 2780) has taken the early lead in the Bilbao Grand Slam Masters Final in Spain ( four players,six rounds) by defeating 19-year old World number one Magnus Carlsen (NOR 2826) in the first round on Saturday evening.  World Champion Viswanathan Anand (IND 2800) drew with Alexei Shirov (ESP 2749).  Carlsen is the new campaign model of G-Star Raw.  Carlsen was surprisingly defeated three times in the Olympiad in Siberia over the last two weeks and after his loss to Kramnik his daily live rating stands at 2805.1  just above World Champion Anand in second place at  2799.3

¬†Adams,Michael ( ENG 2728) - Carlsen,Magnus (NOR 2826) [B06] 39th Olympiad ¬†Khanty-Mansiysk RUS¬† 1.e4 g6 2.d4 Nf6 3.e5 Nh5 (Theory) 4.Be2 d6 5.Nf3 Nc6 6.exd6 exd6 7.d5 Ne7 8.c4 Bg7 9.Nc3 0Ė0 10.0Ė0 Bg4 11.Re1 Re8 12.h3 Bxf3 13.Bxf3 Nf6 14.Bf4 Nd7 15.Rc1 Ne5 16.b3 a6 17.g3 Nf5 18.Bg2 g5?! ( The white squares are weakened) 19.Bxe5 Bxe5 20.Ne4 Ng7 21.Qd2 h6 22.f4! gxf4 23.gxf4 Bf6 24.Kh2 Nh5? 25.Rg1 Kh7 26.Rcf1 Rg8 27.Qe2 Ng7 28.Qd3 Kh8 29.Bf3! b5 30.Bd1 bxc4 31.bxc4 Bh4 32.Bc2 f5 33.Rg6! Kh7 34.Rfg1 Qe7 35.Ng3 Bxg3+ 36.Qxg3 Qf7 37.Bd1 Rae8 38.Rxh6+! 1Ė0 A brilliant finish. (38... Kxh6 39 Qg5+ Kh7 40 Qh4+ Nh5 41 Bxh5 Qe7 42 Bg6+ Kg7 43 Bxe8+ wins)

 Australia seeded 49 at the Olympiad with a 2502 rating finished 55th. A rating of 2537 would increase our seeding to 40, 2583 to 30 and 2637 to 20.  Australian Open Champion IM Aleks Wohl (2398) won the Munich Open International (96 players, 16 titled, 9 rounds) scoring 7.5/9 half a point ahead of IM Kamran Shirazi (FRA 2394).  Wohl also won this event in 2003, 2005 and 2009.

¬†Round eight of the NSW State Championship at Burwood saw the top three seeds all with the white pieces losing to their much lower rated opponents.¬† B.Tindall 2173¬† 0-1 v N.Kordahi 1701 , A.Bird 2131¬† 0-1 v J.Watson 1948 ,G.Canfell 2315 0-1 v M.Baterowicz 1643. The final round will be played on Wednesday evening. Pairings Ė A.Wong (1606) 5.5 v FM B.Tindall (2173) 6.5,¬† N.Kordahi (1701) 6 ¬†v¬† A.Bird (2131) 5.5,¬† M.Baterowicz (1643) 5.5 v J.Watson (1948) 5.5.

¬†Leading final scores in the Ryde- Eastwood Open GP weekender (63 players,7 rounds): Max Illingworth ( 2333) 6.5 (draw with Dr Smirnov in the last round), Andrew Brown (ACT 2126)¬† 6, FM Vladimir Smirnov (2280)¬† 5.5.¬† FIDE Master Bobby Cheng¬† (2227), the World Under 12 Champion, won the 38 player Guy West Classic Grand Prix weekender in Melbourne.¬† The next ACF Grand Prix weekend tournament in NSW will be held at Central Coast leagues Club, Gosford over 7 rounds on 16-17 October.¬† The nine¬† round Spring Challenge¬† starts¬† on Monday evening 18 October at Eastern Suburbs Leagues Club, Bondi Junction in 2 divisions Ė Open and under 1700, The lightning event will be held tonight 11 October.

Fourteen-year-old Pasan Perera has won the City of Sydney Junior Championship(Under 18) after a close battle with nine-year-old Anton Smirnov. The Under 15 division was won by Raymond Han with a large margin of one and a half points, while Cedric Koh won the Under 12 division by an even larger margin of two points.

¬†Leading final scores Ė Under 18 (9 players,8 rounds): Pasan Perera 7.5, Anton Smirnov 7, Kinto Wan 6.5, Bernard Chau 6. ¬†Under 15 (23 players,8 rounds): Raymond Han 7.5, Erik Ostman 6, Joshua Lau, Daniel Zhang, Dylan Siow-Lee 5.5: Under 12 (27 players,11 rounds): Cedric Koh 10.5, Eric Pan 8.5, James Zaverdinos, Kashish Christian 8. ¬†Kashish Christian has won an extended playoff with Grace Shan for the NSW Girls Under 12 Championship after they had tied for first place in the tournament held the previous week. The first playoff match of two games was tied but Kashish won both games of the second match to claim the title.


Ukraine Wins Olympiad
Peter Parr
Ukraine won the Open Chess Olympiad in Siberia one point above the top seeds Russia who finished in second place. Ukraine drew all four games against Israel in the last round. Russia had to defeat Spain to finish equal with Ukraine on match points. Russia over many important matches in numerous Olympiads agree to two short draws with the black pieces relying on one of the players to win with white. Grischuk drew in 21 moves and Karjakin in brilliant form agreed to a draw in only 12 moves.  Vladimir Kramnik (2780) in his sixth Olympiad for Russia remains undefeated and duly beat  Alexei  Shirov (2749).  Peter Svidler (2731) however lost unexpectedly to Ivan Salgado (2595) so the Russia v Spain match was drawn 2-2.
Russia with all four higher rated players could have put more pressure on Spain by trying to win with both  the white and black pieces so if one player loses with white they could still win the match.  
Leading match results ¬†Rd 11 - ¬†Israel ¬†2 ¬†v Ukraine 2 ¬†(4 draws) , ¬†¬†Russia(1) 2 ¬†v Spain 2 , ¬†Poland 1.5 ¬†v Hungary ¬†2.5 , ¬†France 2 ¬†v Armenia ¬†2 (Bd 1 ¬†L. Aronian won for ¬†Armenia). ¬†The two highest rated players in the world Magnus Carlsen (NOR) and Veselin Topalov (BUL) each scored only just over 50%. ¬†¬†¬†Australia beat 139 seeds Nigeria 4-0 in the final round. ¬†Zhao, Smerdon and Xie all won material in tactical games. ¬†Johansen had a very tough and unclear game on board 4 winning a tricky knight and pawn endgame. ¬†¬†¬†Final scores of the Australian players ¬†(each performed slightly above their rating) Ė GM Z.Zhao (2583) 5/9, GM D.Smerdon (2526) 6/9, IM G.Xie (2478) 5/9, GM D.Johansen (2420) ¬†5.5/9, IM S.Solomon (2396) ¬†4.5/8.

Leading final match scores ¬†(148 teams,11 rounds,22 match points) : ¬†Gold Medals - Ukraine 19 ¬†(Bd 1 ¬†V.Ivanchuk 2754 ¬†8/10 ¬†perf 2890), Silver Medals ¬†- Russia (1) 18 ¬†(Bd 4 ¬†S.Karjakin ¬†2747 ¬†8/10 ¬†perf 2859), ¬†¬†Bronze Medals - ¬†Israel ¬†¬†17 (Bd 2 E.Sutovsky 2665 ¬†6.5/8 ¬†2895 perf) , in countback order 4th ¬†Hungary 17, ¬†¬†¬†China , Russia(2) , Armenia ¬†(Bd 1 L.Aronian 2783 ¬†¬†7.5/10 ¬†perf ¬†2888), Spain, ¬†USA, ¬†France all ¬†16. ¬†Israel seeded 11 and Spain seeded 16 were the only two countries not seeded in the top ten to finish in the top ten Ė a triumph for the match point score system used over the previous game point score.

Australia seeded 49th finished in 55th place (up from 68th after rd 10) with 12 match points ¬†(5 wins,4 losses,2 draws with 26 game points from 44 games). Australia were 59th at the 2008 Dresden,Olympiad. ¬†¬†There are five countries in the Oceania Zone Ė New Zealand seeded 92 finished 91st,Papua New Guinea were 143rd after winning their last two matches. ¬†Palau and Fiji did not compete.
Russia (1) won all eleven matches in the Womenís Olympiad. ¬†¬†Leading match results ¬†rd 11 - ¬†Russia(2) 1.5 v Russia (1) 2.5 , ¬†¬†China ¬†3 ¬†v ¬†Ukraine 1, ¬†Poland ¬†2 ¬†v ¬†Georgia 2 . ¬†¬†¬†Australia lost 1-3 to England in the last round (Caoili 0,Nguyen 1, Guo 0, Reid 0 ). ¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†Final scores of the Australian players Ė WIM A.Coili (2243) 6 /11, ¬†G.Nguyen (2108) 6.5/10 , ¬†WIM B.Dekic ¬†(2104) 3.5/7, ¬†¬†WFM E.Guo (1964) 4/8, ¬†WFM V.Reid (1839) 3/8. ¬†¬†¬†Leading final Womenís match scores (115 teams,11 rounds,22 match points); - Gold Medals Ė Russia (1) 22, Silver Medals Ė China 18, and in countback order - Bronze Medals Georgia 16 ¬†and Cuba, USA, Poland, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria all ¬†16 .
Australia seeded 53rd finished in ¬†¬†46th place (placed 63 in Dresden 2008 Olympiad) with ¬†12 match points (6 wins, 5 losses with 23 game points from 44 games). ¬†The New Zealand Womenís team seeded 72 were placed 82. Australia played 5 teams seeded above as and 6 seeded below us in both the Open and Womenís Olympiads. ¬†The 2010 Chess Olympiad was held in Khanty-Mansiysk, Western Siberia, Russia. The 2012 Olympiad will be in Istanbul, Turkey and the 2014 Olympiad in Tromso, Norway in the Arctic Circle.


Russia Wins Womenís Olympiad

Peter Parr (04/10/10)

¬†Russia has won the Womenís Olympiad in Siberia, Russia with a round to spare by winning all ten matches (31.5/40 game points). The Kosintseva sisters Tatiana and Nadezhda on boards one and two are in good form and the reigning World Womenís Champion Alexandra Kosteniuk has scored¬† 6/9 on board 3. ¬†¬†Australia (Caoili,Nguyen,Dekic and Guo beat IPCA (International Physically Disabled Chess Association) 4-0 in round 9 and scored a good 3.5-0.5¬† (Caoili 1,Nguyen 1, Dekic 1, Reid 0.5 ) win against Mexico in round 10. Progress scores of the Australian players Ė WIM A.Caoili (2243) 6/10, G.Nguyen (2108) 5.5/9, WIM B.Dekic (2104) 3.5/7, WFM E.Guo (1964) 4/7,WFM V.Reid (1839) 3/7.

Leading match scores after round 10 (115 teams, 11 rounds) : Russia(1) 20/20, China 16, Ukraine, Georgia, Russia (2) and Poland 15.  Australia seeded 53rd  is in 36th place with 12 (6 wins,4 losses with 22 points from 40 games) and plays England seeded 39th in the final round.

Ukraine leads the Open Olympiad defeating France 3.5-0.5 and Azerbaijan 2.5-1.5 in rounds 8 and 9. Russia retain second place defeating both¬† China and Armenia 2.5-1.5.¬† Australia lost 1.5-2.5 to Sweden seeded 34¬† in round 9. Zhao sacrificed a piece for 3 pawns against GM E.Berg (2616) but a truly brilliant return piece sacrifice left Zhao unable to defend his king and the Swede won. Xie drew with GM T.Hillarp Persson, Johansen outplayed GM S.Cicak (2568) and won. Solomon lost to GM N.Grandelius (2500).¬† Australia drew 2-2 with Singapore seeded 73 in round 10.¬† Australian Champion Zong Zhao (2583) lost to¬† Zhong¬† Zhang (2582), Smerdon beat IM D.Fernandez (2371), Johansen lost to FM W.Chan (2338) but Solomon beat FM Z.Chua¬† (2280).¬†¬†¬† Progress scores of the Australian players Ė GM¬† Z.Zhao (2583) 4/8 Ė 3 wins,3 losses,2 draws, average rating of opponents 2590 score 50%, GM D.Smerdon (2526) 5/8 (3 wins,,2 losses,2 draws plus a win on forfeit), IM G.Xie (2478)¬† 4/8, GM D.Johansen (2420) 4.5/8, IM S.Solomon (2396) 4.5/8.

Leading match scores after round 10 (148 teams,11 rounds) : Ukraine 18 /20 (Bd 1-V.Ivanchuk  2754 has 7.5/9 perf 2912, Bd 4- Z.Efimenko 2683 has 8/10 perf 2808), Russia( 1) 17 (Bd 4-S.Karjakin 2747 ex-Ukraine 7.5/9 perf 2895),  Israel 16 (Bd 3 E.Sutovsky 2665 has 7/8 perf 2938), Poland, Hungary, Armenia, Spain and France 15.  Last round pairings -  Israel v Ukraine, Russia(1) v Spain, Poland v Hungary, France v Armenia.  Australia seeded  49th is in 68th place with 10 (4 wins,4 losses,2 draws with 22 points from 40 games and plays Nigeria seeded 139 in the final round.  Australia will finish just outside the top 50 if  we win the last round match but higher than our 59th final place with the same team at the last Olympiad in 2008 at Dresden,Germany.  Australian Open Champion Aleks Wohl  leads the Munich,Germany  Open International (96 players, 9 rounds) with 7/8.

¬†Leading scores after round 7 in the NSW Championship (34 players,9 rounds) Ė FM B.Tindall ¬†6.5, ¬†A.Bird 5.5, FM G.Canfell and N.Kordahi ¬†5.¬† The Canterbury Championship with 7 rounds over 7 Monday evenings commences next Monday evening 11 October at Lakemba Services Memorial Club. The Australian Young Masters at Rockdale resulted in a tie for first place between Christopher Wallis (VIC) and Moulthun Ly (QLD) each on 7/9 followed by Andrew Brown (ACT) on 6.5 points.

Leading final scores in the NSW Girls Championship¬† :¬† Under 18 -¬† Penelope Drastik (12) and Shirley Gu (13) 5.5/7, Caroline Shan (defending champion) 5.¬†¬† Under 12 Ė Kashish Christian and Grace Shan 11.5, Theresa Gu 11. ¬†Play-offs will be held for the titles.¬† NSWJCL Spring One-Day (151 players) - T. Diemer 8.5/9, E. Ostman 7.5, S.Gu, C.Koh, G.Mavroidis, J.Wu, H.Jones, C.Wang, M.Mithran, T.Yu¬† 7.¬†¬† Two-day (140 players,11 rounds) -¬† E.Xu 10, M.Chang 9, D.Lee 8.5.¬† The City of Sydney Junior Championships will be held on Wednesday to Friday this week in three age divisions: Under-18, Under- 15 and Under- 12.¬† For details see www.nswjcl.org.au or contact Richard Gastineau-Hills, phone 9412 4579.

Czech Mate

Peter Parr (01/10/10)

¬†Grandmaster David Smerdon fought against¬† multiple checkmate threats in the final game of the match between Australia (49 seed) and Czech Republic (17 seed) in the eighth round of the World Chess Olympiad in Siberia. The first game to finish was a win for¬† IM George Xie (2478) on board three against GM J.Votava (2579).¬† Australian Champion GM Zong Yuan-Zhao (2583) on top board was the second to finish drawing an opposite-coloured bishop endgame against Super-Grandmaster David Navara (2722). GM Darryl Johansen (2420) resigned when his position was no longer defendable against GM V.Babula (2515) on board 4. The score was 1.5 - 1.5 with¬† Smerdon (2526) v¬† GM V.Laznicka(2690) both in bad time-trouble on board 2. Smerdon finally gave up a piece for two pawns to avoid Czech Ė mate but it was not enough to save the game. ¬†

Australia beat Finland  2.5-1.5 in round 7. Zhao rested  and Smerdon was paired with GM Tomi  Nyback (2635) who was performing above 2700. Nyback lost on forfeit.  Xie playing black  went astray in the middlegame and lost.  Johansen reached an equal endgame after 15 moves and agreed to a draw. Solomon won in a minor piece endgame.

 Ukraine leads the Olympiad with GM Vassily Ivanchuk on board one scoring a remarkable 6.5/7. The only half-point he has conceded was against former World Champion Vladimir Kramnik (Russia). Sergey Karjakin has scored 6.5/7 on board 4 for Russia. Baadur Jobava beat world no.1 Magnus Carlsen (Norway) in round 3 but was no match for Ivanchuk who won a rook, bishop and knight for the queen  in the following game.

 Rd 7 Ivanchuk,Vassily (2754) - Jobava,Baadur (2710) [B12]

1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.f3 Qb6 4.a3 e5 5.exd5 Nf6 6.dxe5 Bc5 7.exf6 Bf2+ 8.Ke2 0Ė0 9.Qd2 Re8+ 10.Kd1 Re1+ 11.Qxe1 Bxe1 12.Kxe1 Bf5 13.Be2 Nd7 14.dxc6 bxc6 15.Bd1 Re8+ 16.Ne2 Nxf6 17.Nbc3 Bc8 18.a4 a5 19.Rf1 Ba6 20.Rf2 h5 21.Ra3 h4 22.g3 h3 23.g4 Rd8 24.Nf4 Nd7 25.Rb3 Qd4 26.Nfe2 Re8 27.Ne4 Qxa4 28.Bd2 Qa1 29.Bc3 Ne5 30.Ra3 Qb1 31.Nd2 Qc1 32.Rxa5 Ng6 33.Rxa6 Nf4 34.Ra8 1Ė0

 Leading match results round 7:  Ukraine 2.5  v  Georgia 1.5,  Armenia 1.5  v Azerbaijan 2.5 ,  Russia (2) 1.5  v Russia (1) 2.5,  USA 2 v Poland 2.  Round 8: Russia (1) 2  v Ukraine 2,  Hungary 2  v Azerbaijan 2, Poland 1.5 v Armenia 2.5,   USA 2 v China 2.

Leading match scores after round eight (148 teams, 11 rounds):- Ukraine 14/16, Russia (1),Georgia, Azerbaijan, Hungary, Armenia, France 13.  Australia seeded 49 is in place 48 on 9 points (4 match wins, 1 drawn match and 3 match losses, 32 games played and 18.5 game points scored). Australia is paired against Sweden seeded  34 in round 9 and who are higher rated than Australia on all four boards.

¬†Australia beat Turkey 2.5-1.5 in the seventh round of the Womenís Olympiad. Arianne Caoili (2243) drew by repetition of position. Biljana Dekic lost to Ozturk and Emma Guo sacrificed a rook to force mate. Vaness Reid checkmated her opponent on the square g7 on move 33. Australia lost 0-4(Caoili, Nguyen, Guo, Reid) to the much higher rated Lithuania in round 8.

Womenís leading match results round 7: Russia(1)¬†¬† 4 v Hungary 0, China 1.5 v Georgia 2.5, Ukraine 1.5 v India 2.5.

Round 8: India 0.5 v Russia(1) 3.5 , Serbia 2  v Georgia 2, Hungary 2 v Bulgaria 2.

Leading match scores after round 8 (115 teams, 11 rounds) Russia (1) 16/16 , Serbia and Russia(2) 13

Australia seeded 53 is in place 63 with 8 match points (4 match wins, 4 match losses, 32 games played and 14.5 game points scored) and plays IPCA (International Physically Disabled Chess Association) seeded 66 in round nine.

Kirsan Ilyumzhinov(RUS) was re-elected President of the World Chess Federation for the next four years in a secret ballot with 95 votes while his opponent ex-World Champion Anatoly Karpov (RUS) received 55 votes. 

Zhao in Top Form

Peter Parr (29/9/10)

Australian Champion Zong-Yuan Zhao is in top form after six rounds of the World Chess Olympiad in Khanty-Mansiysk,Siberia,Russia.  Viktor Bologan of Moldova is noted for his fine attacking style of play but Zhao defended well in the following game and won with a fine rook sacrifice. 

Bologan,Viktor (2690) - Zhao,Zong-Yuan (2583) Rd 5 [C50]

¬†1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Nf6 4.d3 Bc5 5.c3 a6 6.Bb3 Ba7 7.0Ė0 d6 8.Re1 Ne7 9.d4 Ng6 10.h3 0Ė0 11.Nbd2 Re8 12.Ng5 Re7 13.Ndf3 Qe8 14.Nxf7 Rxf7 15.Ng5 Nh8 16.f4 h6 17.Nxf7 Nxf7 18.g4 Be6 19.Bc2 g5 20.fxe5 dxe5 21.Be3 Qe7 22.Kh1 Rd8 23.Qd2 Kg7 24.Qf2 Bxg4 25.dxe5 Nxe5 26.Bxa7 Bf3+ 27.Kg1 b6 28.Re3 Bh5 29.Rg3 Ra8 30.Bxb6 cxb6 31.Qxb6 Rd8 32.Qf2 Bg6 33.Re3 Nh5 34.Rd1 Rf8 35.Qe2 Nf4 36.Qxa6 g4 37.Qd6 Qxd6 38.Rxd6 Nxh3+ 39.Rxh3 gxh3 40.Bd1 Bxe4 41.a4 Rf2! 0Ė1

 Australia drew 2-2 with the much younger team from Mongolia in round 6.

Bayarsaikhan Gundavaa (2460) sacrificed a rook for a very powerful attack and the resulting double-edged position was totally unclear for more than 40 moves. Zhao returned a piece and exchanged queens to reach a still tricky endgame which he won. Zhao (2583) scored 3.5/5 (loss to world No.4 Aronian) for a 2748 rating performance so far. George Xie a pawn down drew a queen and opposite coloured bishop endgame. Darryl Johansen won a pawn after a piece sacrifice but the extra pawn was isolated and the game was drawn. Solomon on board four had an equal position but overlooked a strong queen check which forced his resignation.

Leading match results :-  Georgia 2  v Armenia 2, Ukraine 3  v Hungary 1, Russia (2)  3  v Netherlands 1, Russia(1)  2.5 v  Czech Republic 1.5.    

Michael Adams (ENG 2728) beat world number 1 Magnus Carlsen (NOR 2826) decisively. The best individual performances from players in the leading teams are :-  V. Ivanchuk(UKR bd 1) 5/5, L.Pantsulia (GEO bd 4) 5/5, H.Nakamura (USA bd 1) 4.5/5  pr 2999, S.Karjakin(RUS 1 bd 4) 4.5/5 pr 2968, L.Aronian(ARM bd 1) 4/5 pr 2900, I.Nepomniachtchi (RUS2 Bd 1) 4/5 pr 2899.

 Leading match scores after round six (148  teams,11 rounds):-    Ukraine, Armenia and Georgia 11/12, Russia 1, Russia 2 ,Poland, USA, Azerbaijan and Hungary  all 10  match points.                                                                                                                      

Australia seeded 49 is in¬† 46th¬†¬† place on 7¬† points ( 3 match wins, 1 drawn match and 2 match losses, 24 games played and 14.5¬† game points scored) and is paired against Finland¬† seeded¬† 60th¬†¬† in round 7.¬†¬† Finland (top board GM Tomi Nyback 2635) like Australia¬† lost to Peru 1.5 Ė 2.5 and drew 2-2 with Mongolia. Russia I plays Russia 2 in round 7.

¬†Australia lost¬† 0.5 Ė 3.5¬† to France seeded 11th in the sixth round of the Womenís Olympiad.¬† Oceania Champion Arianne Caoili (2243) was close to victory against GM Marie Sebag (2499) who fought back to draw on top board. Giang Nguyen(2108) lost to IM S. Milliet (2388). WFM Emma Guo (1964) reached an equal rook and bishop endgame but lost in the fifth hour of play against WIM P.Guichard(2293). WFM Vaness Reid (1839) also lost a lengthy game against IM S.Collas(2320).

¬†Leading match results :-¬† Russia I¬† 2.5¬† v Ukraine 1.5,¬† Georgia 2.5¬† v USA 1.5, Hungary 4 v Poland 0.¬† Grandmaster Alexandra Kosteniuk,the current World Womenís Champion is on board three for Russia no 1 team below the young Kostintseva sisters GM Tatiana and IM Nadezhda¬† on boards 1 and 2 respectively.¬† Russia no 1 are the top seeds and are the sole leaders having won all six matches.¬†¬† Leading Womenís match scores after round 6 (115 teams,11 rounds):- Russia 12/12, Hungary 11, Georgia, Ukraine, China, India all¬† 10.¬†¬† Australia seeded 53 is in¬† 65th¬† place with 6 points (3 match wins, 3 match losses, 24 games played and 12 game points scored) and plays Turkey seeded 48th¬†¬† in round seven.¬†

Australia 2.5  v  Moldova 1.5

Peter Parr (27/9/10)

 Australia defeated the much higher ranked all-grandmaster team from Moldova in the fifth round of the Chess Olympiad. Zhao beat Bologan(2690)by accurate defence,Smerdon lost a drawn position v Iordachescu(2632),Xie won a pawn,then a piece followed by a forced mate against Svetushkin(2555),Solomon drew with Sanduleac(2446).   The biggest surprise of the Olympiad came in round three when World no 1 Magnus Carlsen(NOR) lost to Baadur Jobava(GEO). Croatia held 2nd seeds Ukraine to a 2-2 draw. Russia 1  beat USA 3-1,Hungary beat  China 2.5-1.5.  Top seeds Russia(1) (without Kramnik!) lost 1.5-2.5 to 5th seeds Hungary(Leko won on bd 1) in round 5. 

 Australia after losing a hard fought match against Armenia,the reigning Olympic Champions,in round two crushed lowly ranked Puerto Rico 4-0 (Zhao,Smerdon,Johansen,Solomon) in round three and were paired with the higher ranked Peru in round 4. Zhao had a winning attack against GM Granda Zuniga (2636)but made a few mistakes and a draw by perpetual check resulted. Smerdon drew against GM Cordova.  Xie sacrificed considerable material for a strong attack but GM Jorge Cori(2496) desperately short of time found the right moves in the complications and won. Johansen drew. Final score Australia 1.5 Peru 2.5 .

 Progress scores after round 5:- GM Z.Zhao 2583  2.5 /4, GM D.Smerdon   2526  3 /5, IM G.Xie  2478 2 /4,  GM D.Johansen 2420   2.5/3, IM S.Solomon 2396 2.5 /4.  Leading match scores after round five (148 teams,11 rounds) :- Georgia,Hungary and Armenia 10 /10,Ukraine and Netherlands 9 .  Australia seeded 49 is in 49th place!  on 6  points and is paired against Mongolia seeded 66 in round 6.

¬†Peru beat Australia 3-1 in round 3 of the Womenís Olympiad. Caoili lost to the joint winner of the last World Girls Championship WGM Deysi Cori. Nguyen won on forfeit but Dekic and Reid were steadily outplayed and lost.¬† Caoili,Nguyen,Guo and Reid all won comfortably in round 4 giving Australia a 4-0 win over Pakistan.¬† Australia beat New Zealand 2.5-1.5 in round 5 with Caoili winning and draws by Nguyen,Dekic and Reid.¬† ¬†¬†¬†¬†Progress scores after round 5 :- WIM A.Caoili 2243¬†¬† 3/5,¬† G.Nguyen 2108¬† 3.5 /5, WIM B.Dekic 2104 1.5 /4,WFM E.Guo¬† 1964¬† 2/3,WFM V.Reid 1839 ¬†1.5 /3.¬† ¬†¬†Russia,the top seeds beat China seeded second 2.5 Ė 1.5¬†¬† and third seed Ukraine outclassed¬†¬† Bulgaria seeded twelve¬† 3-1 in 5th round matches.¬† Leading Womenís match scores after round 5¬† (115 teams, 11 rounds) : - Russia (1) and Ukraine 10 /10,USA and Hungary 9.¬† Australia seeded 53 is in 46th place¬† with 6 points and plays 11th seeds France in round 6.¬† ¬†

The Olympiad is being held in Khanty-Mansiysk,Siberia,Russia with biting cold winds over the weekend. Round six starts tonight Monday at 7pm Sydney time.  The election of President of The World Chess Federation between incumbent Kirsan Ilyumzhinov (Russia) and former World Champion Anatoly Karpov (Russia) will be held on Wednesday.

The top three seeds all won their sixth round games in the Integra NSW State Championship at Burwood and are in the top three places with three rounds to play. Leading scores :-  FM B.Tindall 6/6, A.Bird 5, FM G.Canfell 4.5

The NSW Chess Association is organizing a category 4 Grand Prix Weekend tournament  2-4 October at Ryde- Eastwood Leagues Club.  The event will be seven rounds over three days with a prize fund of $ 3200 based on an entry of 70 players.

The NSW Junior Leagueís activities in the coming school holidays include a coaching clinic,one-day and two-day tournaments,the NSW Girls Championships and the City of Sydney Junior Championships. For details see www.nswjcl.org.au or contact Richard Gastineau-Hills,phone 9412 4579.

Australia  v Armenia  Olympic  Champions

Peter Parr (24/9/10)

 Australia played a hard fought second round match against Armenia who have won the Gold Medals in the last two Olympiads in 2008 and 2006. World no 4  Levon Aronian defeated Australian Champion Zong-Yuan Zhao on top board in an instructive game. 

 Aronian,Levon (2783) - Zhao,Zong-Yuan (2583)

1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.g3 d5 4.Bg2 Be7 5.0Ė0 0Ė0 6.d4 dxc4 7.Qc2 a6 8.a4 Bd7 9.Qxc4 Bc6 10.Bf4 a5 11.Nc3 Na6 12.Ne5 Bxg2 13.Kxg2 Nd5 14.Rad1 c6 15.Bc1 Nab4 16.e4 Nb6 17.Qe2 Nd7 18.Nf3 Re8 19.h4 Qb6 20.Ng5 h6 21.Rh1 Bf8 22.e5 f5 23.Qh5 Re7 24.Qg6 hxg5 25.hxg5 c5 26.Nb5 Qc6+ 27.f3 cxd4 28.Qh7+ (winning the queen) 1Ė0

¬†¬† Bd 2 - GM V.Akopian (2691) v¬† GM D.Smerdon (2526) was drawn by perpetual check.¬†¬† Bd 3 - GM G.Sargissian (2677) 1 v IM G.Xie (2478) 0.¬†¬† Bd 4 - GM A.Pashikian (2639) 1 v¬† IM S.Solomon (2396) 0.¬† Final score Armenia 3.5 Ė Australia 0.5.¬†¬†¬† Leading results round 2 Ė Ukraine 4¬† v¬† Scotland 0,¬†¬† Russia (2) 3.5¬†¬† v¬† Venezuela 0.5,¬† Mongolia 0.5¬† v¬† USA¬† 3.5

Leading results round 1 -¬† Russia¬† 3.5 v Ireland¬† 0.5 (IM Sam Collins IRL 2431 drew with GM Alexander Grischuk RUS 2760 in 73 moves on top board).¬† IRAQ¬†¬† 0 v Ukraine¬† 4,¬† China¬† 3.5¬† v¬† Kyrgyzstan¬† 0.5.¬†¬† Thirty-nine teams won 4-0 and nineteen teams scored 3.5-0.5 in first round matches.¬† Yemen refused to play against Israel and lost 0-4 by default. The Australian team of GM Smerdon, IM Xie, GM Johansen and IM Solomon defeated Bahrain 4-0. David Smerdon was the first to finish after trapping his opponentís queen in the following brevity.

¬†Smerdon,David (2526) - Bukhalaf,Ebrahim [B11] Rd 1¬† 1.e4 c6 2.Nf3 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nd7 5.Bc4 Ngf6 6.Neg5 e6 7.Qe2 Nb6 8.Ne5 Qd4 9.Bb3 Bc5 10.c3 Qh4 11.d4 Be7 12.g3 Qh5 13.g4 Qh4 14.h3 Nxg4 15.Qxg4 Bxg5 16.Bxg5 Qxg4 17.Nxg4 0Ė0 18.Be7 Re8 19.Nf6+ 1Ė0¬†¬†

¬†The following three teams have scored 8-0 in their first two matches Ė Ukraine, Poland and Georgia.¬†¬† Australia seeded 49 has scored 2/4 match points and 4.5/8 game points and plays Puerto Rico seeded 99 in round three.

¬†There were 43 teams¬† in the Womenís Olympiad who won their first round matches 4-0 including the top 6 seeded teams¬† -¬† Russia 1, China, Ukraine, Georgia, Russia (2) and USA .¬†¬† The Australian team of WIM Caoili, Nguyen, WIM Dekic and WFM Guo outclassed Nigeria 4-0 although Arianne Caoili won a rook and pawn endgame from an equal position against Oluwatobiloba Olatunji.

¬†The same Australian Womenís team¬† were outrated by more than 200 points on every board in their second round match against tenth seed Slovakia and lost 0-4.¬† Leading results¬† - Russia 2.5¬†¬† v¬† Bosnia and Herzegovina¬† 1.5¬†¬† , Norway 0.5¬†¬† v China¬† 3.5 , Ukraine 3.5¬† v Switzerland 0.5.¬†¬† The following three teams have scored 8-0 in their first two matches in the Womenís Olympiad¬† - Slovakia, Serbia and Germany.¬†¬†¬† Australia seeded 53¬† has 2/4 match points and 4/8 game points and plays Peru seeded 35 in round three.

 The Olympiad in Khanty-Mansiysk, Siberia, Russia had a marvelous opening ceremony, and the facilities at the games, playing venue, accommodation and food are excellent at the Olympic Hotel.

Olympiad Opens in Siberia

Peter Parr (22/9/10)

 The President of Kalmykia, Russia and FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov opened the Chess Olympiad in a spectacular ceremony at the Ice Palace Arena, Khanty-Mansiysk, Siberia, Russia on Monday evening.  There was a video speech from Russian President Dmitry Medvedev.

¬†Armenia has won the gold medals in the 2006 and 2008 Olympiads.¬† The following¬† important game was won by Armeniaís top board player Levon Aronian in the 2008 Dresden Olympiad (his girl friend is 2010 Australian Womenís top board WIM Arianne Caoili) .¬† Ivanisevic,Ivan (SRB 2658) - Aronian,Levon (ARM 2757) [D43] Dresden ol (10) 1.d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Nc3 e6 5.Bg5 h6 6.Bxf6 Qxf6 7.Qb3 dxc4 8.Qxc4 Nd7 9.0Ė0Ė0 a5 10.e3 a4 11.Nxa4 g6 12.Nc3 Bg7 13.h4 0Ė0 14.h5 g5 15.Bd3 Nb6 16.Qb3 Nd5 17.Bb1 Rd8 18.Ne5 c5 19.Qc2 cxd4 20.Qh7+ Kf8 21.Ng4 Qe7 22.Nxd5? (better was 22.Rxd4) 22.exd5 23.Nxh6 Qf6 24.Ng8 Qc6+ 25.Bc2 Rxa2 26.h6 Be5 27.exd4 Ra1+ 28.Kd2 Bf4+ 29.Ke1 Re8+ 30.Kf1 Rxd1+ 0Ė1

 Armenia seeded 9 out of 146 in 2008 won gold with 19/22 match points, Israel seeded 8 silver on 18 and USA seeded 10 bronze on 17 points. The top five seeded countries all finished between 4th and 8th.  The 2006 Olympiad had 148 teams with Armenia 1st,China 2nd and USA 3rd.    The USSR 1952-1990 and Russia 1992-2002 won the gold medals in all 26 Olympiads except 1978 when they were second to Hungary. Russia have been top seeds in the 4 Olympiads 2004-2010 but are not feared as in the past.

¬†The 2010 Olympiad has a record entry of 148 Open Teams and 114 Womens Teams. There are a total of 1380 players of which 772 are titled (247 GM, 63 WGM, 160 IM, 87 WIM, 81 FM and 80 WFM). The top three seeded countries in the Open Division are Russia 2749,Ukraine 2737 and China 2703. Australia is ranked 49 at 2502. GM Eugenio Torre(PHI) is playing in his 20th Olympiad(1970-2010) equaling the 20 Olympiads of GM Lajos Portisch(HUN) 1956-2000. Australia finished 29 in the 2006 Turin, Italy Olympiad with the current Australian Open Champion Aleks Wohl scoring 7/8.¬† Australia ranked 53 in Dresden, Germany 2008 was placed 57. Australia scored 12/22 match points Ė 6 wins,5 losses and 24/44 game points. The best result was defeating Switzerland with GM Zong-Yuan Zhao beating former World Title Challenger Viktor Korchnoi on top board.

¬†Our 2010 team has the same five players as in 2008 but our top three boards this year are our younger players GM Z.Zhao (5th Oly), GM D.Smerdon (4th Oly) and IM G.Xie (2nd Oly) who have each increased their rating since the last Olympiad. The veteran campaigners¬† GM D.Johansen is our no 4 player (14th Oly 1980-2010) and IM S.Solomon no 5 (9th¬† Oly) for Australia. GM Ian Rogers played in 14 Olympiads 1978-2006 (12 times on board 1) for Australia¬† before retiring. First round pairings Ė Russia(1) v Ireland(74),Iraq (75) v Ukraine (2). Australia(49) v Bahrain (123).

¬†There are 114 teams in the Womenís Olympiad led by Russia 2536, China 2500 and Ukraine 2493.WGM Margarita Voiska (BUL) is playing in a record 16th Womens Olympiad (1980-2010). Australia is ranked 51 at 2105. WIM Arianne Caoili is competing in her 6th Olympiad, Giang Nguyen 2nd,WIM Biljana Dekic her 9th Olympiad (1990-2010) and WFM Emma Guo and Vaness Reid their first Olympiad. First round pairings Ė Bangladesh(58) v Russia(1), China(2) v Brazil (59), Nigeria(108) v Australia(51). Australia should win their first round matches decisively.

Tindall Targets Title

Peter Parr (20/9/10)

¬†FIDE Master Brett Tindall has won his first five games and is on target for the title in the Integra NSW State Championship at Burwood.¬† He defeated his two main rivals and former title-holders FM Greg Canfell and Andrew Bird in the fourth and fifth rounds.¬† Tindall won the NSW Junior Championship in 1995 and was Sydney Champion in 1998. He is a FIDE (World Chess Federation )Trainer and is¬† the Principal of The Sydney Chess Academy at Burwood teaching junior players. Leading scores after round 5 Ė FM B.Tindall (2173) 5/5,A.Bird(2131) and C.Skulte(1749) 4,FM G.Canfell(2315),A.Wong(1606),C.Ng(1472) 3.5.¬† The following players have scored 3/3 in the 71-player Ford Memorial at Norths,Cammeray Ė FM V.Smirnov,A.Bird,A.Chek,B.Mandla,A.Smirnov,O.Wang and J.Ruan.

 Shane Burgess was elected President of the Parramatta RSL Chess Club last Thursday after the retirement of Bob Sewell. The NSW Chess Association Integra NSW Open Grand Prix W/E Tournament at Parramatta RSL in June this year attracted a record 148 players. Sewell remains an active player as he has for more than half a century and is currently competing in the NSW State Championship.  The next NSWCA Grand Prix weekender will be held over 7 rounds at Ryde-Eastwood Leagues Club 2-4 October.

¬†The Chinese League is played over 18 rounds in 6 cities April Ė December. Shangdong Linglong lead with 11 wins and 1 draw from 12 matches. The following two games were played last week in Guangzhou

¬†Ni Hua (2667) - Wang Chen (2399) [B40] 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 e6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 Bb4 6.e5 Nd5 7.Bd2 Nxc3 8.bxc3 Ba5 9.Bd3 Qc7 10.0Ė0 Nc6 11.Qg4 g6 12.Qh4 0Ė0 13.Nxc6 Qxc6 14.Bg5 f5 15.exf6 Bxc3 16.Rae1 d5 17.Re3 Qc7 18.Bxg6! hxg6 19.Rh3 Ba5 20.Bd2! Bb6 21.Bb4 1Ė0

¬†Motylev,A (2704)¬† - Ma Qun (2369) [B80]¬† 1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 e6 6.Be3 a6 7.f3 b5 8.Qd2 Nbd7 9.0Ė0Ė0 Bb7 10.g4 Ne5 11.g5 Nfd7 12.Rg1 Nb6 13.Qe1 Rc8 14.Kb1 Qc7 15.Bd3 Nec4 16.Bc1 Be7 17.f4 b4 18.Nce2 d5 19.e5 g6 20.h4 Nd7 21.h5 Qb6 22.Rh1 Rf8 23.hxg6 hxg6 24.Rh7 Nc5 25.Qh1 a5 26.Rxf7 Nxd3 27.Rxf8+ Bxf8 28.Rxd3 Ba6 29.Rh3 Na3+ 30.bxa3 Bxe2 31.Nxe2 a4 32.Rh8 bxa3+ 33.Ka1 Rxc2 34.Qd1 Rb2 35.Qd3 Qb4 36.Qxg6+ Kd7 37.Rxf8 Qxf8 38.Bxb2 axb2+ 39.Kxb2 Qb4+ 40.Kc2 Qc4+ 41.Kd1 Qxa2 42.Qf7+ Kc6 43.Qxe6+ 1Ė0. Alexander Motylev(RUS) has scored 8/9.

The European Youth Championships in age groups from Under 8 to Under 18 boys and girls has just started with over 700 contestants in Batumi,Georgia a¬† resort on the Black Sea. The flamboyant President of the World Chess Federation Kirsan Ilyumzhinov has offered to purchase a controversial plot of land ¬†two blocks from Ground Zero,New York where the Twin Towers of the World Trade Centre collapsed in 2001 for US $10 million (AUS $10.63 million) proposing to build a World Chess Centre.¬† GM Kateryna Lahno(UKR 2539) won the Womenís World Blitz(3 mins plus 2 secs per move)Championship in Moscow on Saturday scoring 20/30 one point ahead of GM Tatiana Kosintseva(RUS 2573) in second place.

The opening ceremony of the Chess Olympiad will be held tonight (Monday)at the Ice Palace Arena,Khanty-Mansiysk,Siberia,Russia. Teams from 150 countries are competing in the Open Olympiad. Top seeds are Russia 2749,Ukraine 2737 and China 2703. Australia 2502 are seeded 50. Womenís Olympiad 118 countries led by¬†¬† Russia 2536,China 2500,Ukraine 2493. Australia 2105 is seeded 51. The SMH will publish extra chess columns to cover the Chess Olympiad.

Shirov Sharp in Shanghai

Peter Parr (13/9/10)

 Alexei Shirov played sharply in Shanghai scoring three wins and three draws. Final scores A.Shirov(ESP 2749) 4.5,V.Kramnik(RUS 2780) and L.Aronian(ARM 2783) 3,Wang Hao(CHN 2724) 1.5. Kramnik beat Aronian in the play-off for second place. Shirov,Kramnik,World Champion Viswanathan Anand(IND) and World no 1 Magnus Carlsen(NOR) meet in the 4-player Grand Final in Bilbao,Spain next month.

 The highest rated player in the World Magnus Carlsen took on thousands of registered viewers from around the world  in the G-Star Raw World Challenge on Friday night.  Garry Kasparov(RUS) World no 1 for 20 years 1985-2005 provided the commentary and Carlsen won in 44 moves.

 GM Bent Larsen,the strongest ever Danish player has died at the age of 75. He was noted for his great energy and fighting spirit, and original ideas as in the Larsen opening 1 b3. He won the Gold Medal on board 1 at the 1956 Moscow Olympiad and won the World Inter-Zonal tournaments in 1964,1967 and 1976. In 1967 he won four first prizes in major events and was awarded the first chess Oscar in that year. Larsen played top board above Bobby Fischer in the 1970 USSR v Rest of the World Match scoring 50% against World Champion Boris Spassky. He lost 6-0 to genius Bobby Fischer in the 1971 Candidates Semi-final match.

 Ian Nepomniachtchi won the Russian Higher League Championship in Irkutsk,Siberia (48 players including 40 GM) scoring 7/10. Nine players tied for second on 6.5 points.

¬†Bocharov,D (2618) - Nepomniachtchi,I (2706) [D76] 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.g3 Bg7 4.Bg2 d5 5.cxd5 Nxd5 6.Nf3 0Ė0 7.0Ė0 Nb6 8.Nc3 Nc6 9.e3 Re8 10.Re1 a5 11.Qe2 e5 12.Nxe5 Nxe5 13.dxe5 Bxe5 14.e4 Be6 15.f4 Bxc3 16.bxc3 Bd5 17.Qf2 Bc6 18.f5 Na4 19.c4 Qf6 20.Be3 Rad8 21.h4 Qb2 22.c5 Qxf2+ 23.Bxf2 Nc3 24.fxg6 fxg6 25.Re3 Nd1 26.Re2 Nxf2 27.Kxf2 Rd3 28.Re3 Rd2+ 29.Re2 Rxe2+ 30.Kxe2 Bxe4 31.Bxe4 Rxe4+ 32.Kd3 Rg4 33.Rb1 Rxg3+ 34.Kc4 Rg4+ 35.Kb5 Rb4+ 36.Rxb4 axb4 37.c6 bxc6+ 38.Kxb4 Kf7 39.Kc5 Ke6 40.Kxc6 h5 0Ė1

 Nepomniachtchi won the European Under-10 Championship in 2000 and at the age of 19 in March this year he won the European Championship above 186 grandmasters. He will play on board 2 for the Russian second team, seeded third, behind the Russian first team and Ukraine at the chess Olympiad in Siberia 20 Sep-3 Oct.

The Malaysian Open in Kuala Lumpur resulted in a tie for first place between GM S.Cao(VIE 2540),GM W.Zhou(CHN 2570) and IM S.Sethuraman(IND 2513) on 7/9. Australian players results -  GM David Smerdon( 2526) was undefeated (perf 2552) finishing in an eight way tie for fourth place on 6.5. IM G.Lane( 2373) 6,IM J.Morris( 2262) 5.5,FM T.Rej(2334) and J.Tan(2033) 4.5,D.Dragicevic(2202) 4,A.Safarian(2026) 3.5,WFM E.Guo(1965) 2.5. J.Guo(1472) scored 3.5/9 in the main supporting event and FM Brian Jones 4/7 in the Seniors.

 The top two seeds FIDE Masters Greg Canfell and Brett Tindall met in an exciting encounter in the fourth round of the Integra NSW State Championship last Wednesday evening at Burwood. Tindall sacrificed the exchange for a strong attack. Canfell played actively but his king was misplaced and with both players short of time Tindall missed a pawn move delivering checkmate. Canfell later had a possible perpetual check. Tindall had 5 pawns for the bishop and won. Meanwhile Andrew Bird beat Krishna Thapa (Nepal 1937). Bird and Tindall lead with 4/4 and meet in round 5. Canfell is a point behind with 5 rounds to play.

Ronald Scott will give an Olympiad fund raising simultaneous exhibition on Tuesday evening at Norths,Cammeray. The annual NSW Chess Association Inter-Club Grade Match Presentation night and lightning tournament will be held on Wednesday evening at Ryde-Eastwood Leagues Club.


Can You Beat Magnus Carlsen?

Peter Parr (6/9/10)

 Magnus Carlsen of Norway, the world's highest rated player will be in New York City on Friday 10 September competing against tens of thousands of players around the world in the Raw World Chess Challenge. Carlsen has just beaten the reigning World Champion Viswanathan Anand 1.5-0.5 in the rapid match final of the Arctic Stars in Kristiansund, Norway.

 The Chess Olympiad 20 Sep-3 Oct in Khanty-Mansiysk,Western Siberia,Russia has attracted a record entry of 159 Open Teams and 119 Women's Teams. The organisers are providing free charter flights from various cities (Dubai for the Australian Teams) to Siberia. The top seeds(average rating of the four highest rated players per team) in the Open are - Russia 2749,Ukraine 2737,Azerbaijan 2721,Australia is seeded 50 on 2502. Women - Russia 2538,China 2500,Ukraine 2493, Australia is seeded 51 at 2105.

 Ian Nepomniachtchi is the sole leader with 6.5/9 in the Russian Championship Higher League in Irkutsk (Siberia). Australian Open Champion IM Aleks Wohl of NSW gained rating points (5 wins, 2 draws with GM Zelcic 2554 and Feige 2402 and 2 losses to GM Kunin 2534 and GM Palac 2562) scoring 6/9 in Salzburg, Austria. Wohl rejected a draw by perpetual check and lost against GM Vitaly Kunin of Germany who won the event with 7.5/9. FM Tomek Rej 2334 of Sydney scored 2.5/9 in Haarlem (NED).

       Jun Zhao(CHN 2586) and Le Quang Liem (VIE 2681) tied for first with 7/9 in the Campomanes Memorial in Manila, Philippines. Progress scores of the 7 Australians after round 6 in the Malaysian Open in Kuala Lumpur :- GM D.Smerdon (2526) 4.5(perf 2581),IM G.Lane(2373) 3.5,FM T.Rej(2334) and J.Tan(2033) 3,D.Dragicevic(2202),WFM E.Guo(1965),A.Safarian(2026) 2.5. FM B.Jones(AUS 2079) has scored 3.5/5 in the Seniors.

 Top 10 players on the September World Rating List - M.Carlsen NOR 2826,V.Topalov BUL 2803,V.Anand IND 2800,L.Aronian ARM 2783,V.Kramnik RUS 2780,P.Eljanov UKR 2761(up 44 in 12 months to world no 6),A.Grischuk RUS 2760,S.Mamedyarov AZE 2756,V.Ivanchuk UKR 2754,B.Gelfand ISR 2751. Women - J.Polgar HUN 2682,H.Koneru IND 2593,Y.Hou CHN 2578. Leading Australians - GM Z.Zhao 2583(world no 271),GM D.Smerdon 2526(world no 587),IM G.Xie 2478(world no 1015),IM J.Gil 2444,GM D.Johansen 2420,IM A.Wohl 2398,IM S.Solomon 2396,IM I.Goldenberg 2386,IM G.Lane 2373,IM G.West 2360. Women - WM A.Caoili 2243,IM I.Berezina 2238,WM B.Dekic 2104,WM A.Jule 1970,WFM E.Guo 1964. Country rank by average rating of the top 10 - Russia 2729,Ukraine 2695,    France 2653,China 2647. Australia 2436 is ranked 57 out of 154 countries.

 For the Australian Chess Federation September rating period there were 124 tournaments rated (80 classic,44 rapid) and 11170 games of which 6459 were in the ACF Classic rating system and 4711 were in the ACF Rapid rating system.  Top 10 - GM Z.Zhao (NSW 2580), GM D.Smerdon (ACT 2489), IM G.Xie (NSW 2461), IM A.Wohl (NSW 2415), GM D.Johansen (VIC 2362), IM S.Solomon (QLD 2335), FM I.Bjelobrk (NSW 2329), FM J.Sales (NSW 2327), IM I.Goldenberg(VIC 2326), FM J.Ikeda (ACT 2324).

  Over 80-W.Leonhardt (WA 1849),Over 70-FM A.Flatow(NSW 2107),Over 60-IM M.Rujevic(VIC 2225),U20-J.Ikeda(ACT 2324),U18,U16,U14 - World Under 12 Champion FM B.Cheng(VIC 2227),U12,U10 - A.Smirnov(NSW 1916). Women WM A.Caoili(QLD 2169), G.Nguyen(SA 2101),IM I.Berezina-Feldman (NSW 2048),WM B.Dekic(NSW 1966),Girls U20- WFM E.Guo(ACT 1877). The top three seeds FM Greg Canfell,FM Brett Tindall and Andrew Bird share the lead with 3/3 a full point clear of the field in the Integra NSW State Championship at Burwood.

Youth defeats Experience

Peter Parr (30/8/10)

 The NH tournament in Amsterdam was a confrontation between a team of five "rising stars" who beat the team of "experienced" grandmasters 26-24. Each player from one team played against each of the members of the other team twice. Boris Gelfand (ISR 2739) of the experienced team made the best score 7/10 ahead of Anish Giri (NED 2672)and H.Nakamura (USA 2729) both of the "rising stars" team on 6 points each.

 Here are two exciting games from the match. D.Howell 2616 v P.Nielsen 2700  1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Bxc6 dxc6 5. O-O Ne7 6. Nxe5 Qd4 7. Qh5 g6 8. Qg5 Bg7 9. Nd3 f5 10. e5 c5 11. b3 b6 12. Bb2 Qg4 13. Qe3 Nd5 14. Qe1 f4 15. f3 Qg5 16. c4 Bf5 17. Nxc5 bxc5 18. cxd5 Bd3 19. Nc3 O-O 20. Ne4 Qf5 21. Nxc5 Bxf1 22. Kxf1 Rad8 23. Qe4 Rfe8 24. d4 Qxe4 25. fxe4 1-0 

L.Ljubojevic 2572 v A.Giri 2672 1. d4 d5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. c4 c6 4. Nc3 e6 5. Bg5 h6 6. Bxf6 Qxf6 7. Qc2 dxc4 8. e3 b5 9. a4 Bb7 10. axb5 cxb5 11. Nxb5 Bb4+ 12. Nc3 O-O 13. Be2 Rc8 14. O-O Nd7 15. Rfc1 a5 16. Qd1 e5 17. Na4 Qg6 18. Bxc4 exd4 19. exd4 Rd8 20. Qb3 Qf5 21. Ne1 Rab8 22. Nc2 Bd2 23. Rd1 Bxg2 24. Bxf7+ Kh8 25. Qe6 Qxc2 26. Kxg2 Nf6 27. Qc4 Qe4+ 28. f3 Qh4 29. Kh1 Ne4 30. Rg1 Nf2+ 31. Kg2 Rxd4 32. Qe6 Bf4 33. Kf1 Nd1 0-1

 The 63rd Russian Championship Higher League has started in Irkutsk,Siberia with 48 players(40GM). GM Artyom Timofeev 2690 leads with 3/3. FM Tomek Rej 2334 of Sydney has 2/8 in Haarlem(NED) with one round to play.The Malaysian Open starts on Wednesday in Kuala Lumpur with 138 competitors(17 GM) from 19 countries. Top seeds are GM's A.Gupta (IND 2587),Zhou Weiqi(CHN 2570),Z.Rahman(BAN 2543). Australia is represented by 6th seed GM D.Smerdon 2526,42nd seed IM G.Lane 2373,FM T.Rej 2334,IM J.Morris 2262,D.Dragicevic 2202,J.Tan 2033 and A.Safarian 2026. FM B.Jones (AUS 2079) is 4th seed in the Seniors Open tournament. The 107 player rapid was won by GM S.Iuldachev(UZB 2496) with 6.5/7. The leading Australians were IM J.Morris 2262 and S.O'Reilly 1998 on 4.5 points. The Campomanes Memorial started on Saturday in Manila,Philippines with 72 players including 21 GM's from 14 countries. A.Krawcheni(AUS 2056) lost his first game.

 The President of the World Chess Federation Kirsan Ilyumzhinov(Russia) lists on his web site 90 countries(out of 161)supporting his re-election for President. He has visited Zambia,Bolivia,Peru,Slovenia,Slovakia,Austria,Poland,Afghanistan,United Arab Emirates,Syria,Israel,Cyprus,Palestine,Trinidad and Tobago,India,Lebanon,Malaysia and Philippines so far in the last 2 months.

 The Grand Prix Weekender in Yarraville,Melbourne was jointly won by FM G.Canfell (2315), IM G.West (2271), and J.Tan (1891) on 4/5 ahead of World Under-12 Champion FM Bobby Cheng (2280) and FM E.Teichmann (2321)on 3.5. The Victorian State Championship resulted in a tie for first place between Dusan Stojic 2238 and Chris Wallis 2237 each scoring 8.5/11. A four game play-off match will be held for the title. IM I.Goldenberg 2386 and IM M.Rujevic 2259 scored 8 followed by FM B.Cheng 2332 on 6.5 and IM L.Sandler 2321 on 5 points.The third round of the Integra NSW State Championship at Burwood was struck by a lengthy and widespread power outage after 30 minutes play and the "force majeure" situation led to the adjournment of all  games which will be resumed on Wednesday this week.

  The Ford Memorial started last Tuesday at Norths with 71 players.The top 14(7 above 1800) led by FM G.Canfell 2315,FM V.Smirnov 2290,A.Bird 2131 and A.Chek 2014 all won their first round games. The NSW Chess Association Teams Lightning was won by Smart Dolphins(Bjelobrk,Scott,Norman,McNamara) on 44.5/56 ahead of Sydney Academy of Chess A (Illingworth,Bird,Thapa,Mandla 41,Norths A 38.5 and Sydney Academy of Chess B 36.

Election 87 - 23

Peter Parr (23/8/10)

 The election of President of the World Chess Federation 2010-2014 will be held in Siberia in 5 weeks time. The incumbent Kirsan Ilyumzhinov who is also President of Kalmykia,Russia has 87 of the 161 votes(one country one vote) according to his website compared to 23 for Karpov who strongly disputes these figures.

Top seed GM Dmitry Andreikin (2650) took first place on tie-break from Russian compatriot GM Sanian Sjugirov (2610,Elista,Kalmykia) in the World Junior Championship in Czarna, Poland each scoring 10/13 in the 122 player event. Early leader GM Dariusz Swiercz (Pol 2492) who tied for first place in the 2007 City of Sydney Championship at the age of 12 finished in third place on 9/13 winning the bronze medal. Australia's Sherab Guo-Yuthok (1975) scored 4.5 points

 V.Durarbeyli 2501 v D.Andreikin 2650  B43 1. e4 c5 2. Nc3 a6 3. Nf3 e6 4. d4 cxd4 5. Nxd4 b5 6. Bd3 Bb7 7. O-O Qb6 8. Nf3 Qc7 9. Re1 Bc5 10. e5 f5 11. exf6 Nxf6 12. Ne4 Bxe4 13. Bxe4 Nc6 14. Bg5 Nxe4 15. Rxe4 O-O 16. Bh4 Rf5 17. Bg3 Qb7 18. Qe2 Raf8 19. Rd1 Nb4 20. a3 Nd5 21. Re5 R5f6 22. Qe4 h6 23. Rh5 Qa8 24. c4 bxc4 25. Qxc4 Bb6 26. Rh4 Ne3! 27. fxe3 Bxe3+ 28. Kf1 Rxf3+ 29. gxf3 Qxf3+ 30. Ke1 Qh1+ 31. Ke2 Qf3+ 32. Ke1 Bg5 33. Qd3 Qh1+ 34. Ke2 Qg2+ 35. Ke1 Bxh4 36. Bxh4 Rf4 37. Rc1 Re4+ 38. Kd1 Qg4+ 39. Kc2 Rd4 40. Qxa6 Rc4+ 0-1

 D.Andreikin 2650 v K.Stupak 2504  A40 1. d4 e6 2. c4 Bb4+ 3. Bd2 Bxd2+ 4. Qxd2 Nf6 5. Nc3 d5 6. Nf3 c6 7. e3 Nbd7 8. Bd3 dxc4 9. Bxc4 Qe7 10. e4 e5 11. d5 cxd5 12. exd5 Qc5 13. Bb3 O-O 14. O-O Qd6 15. Rfe1 a6 16. Qe3 Re8 17. Nd2 b5 18. Nce4 Qb8 19. d6 Bb7 20. Rac1 Bxe4 21. Nxe4 Nxe4 22. Qxe4 Qxd6 23. Red1 Nf6 24. Bxf7+ ! 1-0

 Top seed IM Anna Muzychuk (SLO 2527) won the 81 player World Girls on 11/13 above WGM Olga Girya (RUS 2376) 10.5 and WGM Rout Padmini (IND 2275) 10. WFM Emma Guo (Aus 1965) scored 5.5 and Tamzin Oliver (Aus 1737) 4.5 points.

 FM Tomek Rej (2334) of Sydney scored 4.5/9 (rating performance 2221) in Chalkis, Greece. GM Suat Atalik (TUR 2607) won the 204 player event with 8/9 from a strong field from 29 countries including 41 Grandmasters. Rej has lost his first round game to IM A.Manea(ROM 2390) in Haarlem(NED).Leading final scores from The Championship of France in Belfort (12 players,including 11 GM's,av rating 2596) R.Edouard (2620) 8/11,L.Fressinet (2697) 8,E.Bacrot(2720) 7 all undefeated. Laurent Fressinet beat Romain Edouard for the title in the rapid play-off.

 Seven players including the top three seeds FM Greg Canfell,FM Brett Tindall and Andrew Bird have won their first two games in the Integra NSW State Championship at Burwood. FM Max Illingworth won the Ford lightning at Norths with the impressive score of 8.5/9. The Ford Memorial will be held over nine Tuesday evenings commencing tomorrow night at Norths,Cammeray. The top three seeds from 68 advanced entries are FM G.Canfell,FM V.Smirnov and A.Bird.

 Canfell has 2/3 one point behind the leaders FM Bobby Cheng and IM Guy West in the Weekend Grand Prix tournament in Yarraville,Melbourne.

Leading scores in the Victorian State Championship with one round to play (12 players including 4 IM's,3 FM's,11 rounds) D.Stojic(2238),IM M.Rujevic(2259) 8/10,C.Wallis(2237) and IM I.Goldenberg(2386) 7.5,FM B.Cheng(2332)5.5. Favorites FM Haydn Barber and Tim Hare are ahead of the field with 4.5/6 in the ten player West Australian Championship. Yi Liu won the eight player Queensland championship half a point ahead of George Lester and FM Nick Stawsky.

China beats Russia

Peter Parr (16/8/10)

China defeated Russia 128-122 in a series of matches last week in Ningbo,China. China won 27-23 (men 15.5-9.5,women 11.5-13.5)in standard time-rated games and 101-99(men 51.5-48.5,women 49.5-50.5) in rapid games. Russia narrowly won the women's divisions but China were convincing winners in the men's divisions. Bu Xiangzhi scored the best result 4/5(2928 pr) in the standard games. One of the best standard games of the match follows.

V.Potkin (2626) v Wang Hao (2724) E58 Rd5 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. e3 O-O 5. Bd3 d5 6. Nf3 c5 7. O-O Nc6 8. a3 Bxc3 9. bxc3 Qc7 10. Bb2 Na5 11. cxd5 exd5 12. Ne5 Re8 13. a4 Rxe5! 14. dxe5 Qxe5 15. h3 c4 16. Bc2 Bf5 17. Re1 Bxc2 18. Qxc2 Nb3 19. Rad1 Re8 20. f3 Nc5 21. Rd4 Nd3 22. Re2? (White should return the exchange with 23 Rxd3 although black stands slightly better) Nh5 23. e4 Nhf4 24. Rd2 f5 25. Ba3 fxe4 26. fxe4 Qg5 27. Kh2 Rxe4 28. Qd1 Qe5 29. Rxe4 dxe4 30. Qg4 h5 0-1

United States Champion Gata Kamsky won the Rapid World Championship in Mainz,Germany. Leading final scores:-(701 players including 44 GM,9 WGM,44 IM,11 rounds) G.Kamsky (USA 2713) 10 (9/9 followed by two draws): V.Gashimov (AZE 2719), L.Aronian (ARM 2783), E.Bareev (RUS 2663) 9.5.

GM Pavel Eljanov (UKR 2755) won the 292 player, 10 round Politiken Cup in Denmark conceding only 3 draws. FM Tomek Rej (2334)of Sydney(Australian Junior Champion 2003) finished equal 17th with 7/10 gaining 6 rating points. Grandmasters Mikhail Kobalia (RUS 2648) and Manuel Hoyos (MEX 2556) tied for first place on 7.5/9 in the Arctic Challenge in Tromso, Norway. Australian Open Champion Aleks Wohl (2375) played a strong field including 5 grandmasters scoring 5.5/9 and a 2500 rating performance.

FIDE Women's Grand Prix tournament in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia - final scores - Hou Yifan(CHN 2577) 8/11,A.Stefanova(BUL 2560) 7.5,H.Koneru(IND 2600),Zhao Xue(CHN 2462),T.Kosintseva(RUS 2562) 6.5,M.Chiburdanidze(GEO 2514) 6.   GM Dmitry Andreikin(RUS 2650) leads the World Junior Championship in Czarna, Poland(122 players,13 rounds) with 9/11 half a point ahead of GM Sanan Sjugirov(RUS 2610) on 8.5. Sherab Guo-Yuthok (AUS 1975) has 4 points. IM Anna Muzychuk(SLO 2527) leads the 81 player World Girls with 10/11. WFM Emma Guo (AUS 1954) is on 4.5   and Tamzin Oliver (AUS 1737) has scored 4 points.

NSWCA Inter-Club grade match competition final scores. Under 2150 - Parramatta Dolphins 21 (Dr V.Tulevski 6.5/9), Norths and St George 17, Parramatta Eels 16. Under 1800 - St George Dragons 22(S.Gu 6.5/7),Norths 19(P.Lay 6.5/9),St George Saints 17.5,Harbord Diggers 13.5. Under 1600 - St.George Saints 26.5 (T.Ollivain 7/9), Norths Grizzlies 25.5 (V.Chen 5/7), (S.Dibley 6/8), N.Greenwood 7.5/10. Parramatta 21 (J.Christensen 6/8), Norths Brown Bears 18 (M.Anderson 5/7), Rooty Hill 12.5 (L.Damaschino 3.5/5), Harbord Diggers and Ryde-Eastwood 11.5, St.George Dragons 9.5. Under 1400 - Parramatta Yellow 29 (A.Hassani 9/10 and M.Mithran 8.5/9) Ryde-Eastwood Knights 22.5, St.George 21.5 (H.Chai 6.5/9), Parramatta Blue 19, Norths and Rooty Hill 12 (E.Quesada 5/7), Harbord Diggers 10.5, Ryde-Eastwood Hawks 9.5 (E.Cardenas 5/7).

IM George Xie scored 19 wins,1 draw and 2 losses in a 22 board simultaneous exhibition which raised $460 for the Olympiad last Tuesday evening at Norths,Cammeray. The Ford Lightning will be held at Norths tomorrow evening and the 9 round World Rated Ford Memorial starts on Tuesday evening 24 August. The top three seeds FM Greg Canfell,FM Brett Tindall and Andrew Bird all won their first round games in the Integra NSW State Championship at Burwood. Fourth seed James Watson lost to Stephen Roche. The NSW Chess Association Teams Lightning Challenge will be held next Sunday 22 August at Ryde-Eastwood Leagues Club. 

Swiercz leads World Junior
Peter Parr (9/8/10)
Grandmaster Dariusz Swiercz(POL 2492) who tied for first place in the City
of Sydney Championship in 2007 at the age of twelve, has taken the sole lead
with 4.5/5 in the World Junior Championship in Czarna,Poland. Swiercz became
an IM at the age of 13 and a grandmaster at 14. Swiercz is seeded 26th in
the 122 player,13 round event which attracted 19 grandmasters. There are 11
players half-a-point behind Swiercz including top seed GM Dmitry
Andreiken(RUS 2650) and GM Parimarjan Negi(IND 2615). Sherab Guo-Yuthok(AUS
1975) has scored 2/5. WFM Emma Guo(AUS 1954) who will be representing
Australia at the Olympiad in Siberia next month has scored 3/5 in the World
Girls Championship and Tamzin Oliver(AUS 1737) has 1.5 points.
1314 players from 44 countries participated in the Czech Open in Pardubice.
Last year's winner GM Anton Korobov from Ukraine (2657) has won the main GM
event again this year scoring 8 of 9.  GM Michael Adams (2706) dominated the
78 player British Championship in Canterbury, Kent scoring 9.5/11 ahead of
GM Nicholas Pert (2551) in second place on 8 points.
FM Tomek Rej (2334) of Sydney has scored 6/9 in the 292 player,10 round
Politiken Cup in Copenhagen, Denmark. Rej had gone astray losing to Gunnar
Stray(2055) in round 2 but scored 6 wins and two losses to GM Aagaard (2542)
and Mchedlishvili (2625). Rej needs to increase his rating to 2400 for his
IM Title.
Australian Open Champion IM Aleks Wohl (2375) arrived on his bicycle for the
Arctic Challenge in Tromso in Northern Norway. Wohl defeated all his
opponents below the rank of grandmaster,lost to GM Khenkin(GER 2632) and GM
Kobalia(RUS 2648),drew with GM Turner(ENG 2506) and beat GM Malakhatko (BEL
2576) for an overall progress score of 5.5/8. GM's Van Wely(NED 2677) and
Hoyos(MEX 2556) lead the 164 player(25 GM's) event on 7/8. 
Wohl won the following entertaining game after returning just in time from a
fishing trip catching cod in the Arctic.
GM V.Malakhatko 2576 v IM A.Wohl 2375 A40 Queen's pawn. 1 d4 e6 2 c4 b6 3 a3
g6 4 Nc3 Bg7 5 e4 Bb7 6 Nf3 Ne7 7 Bg5 h6 8 Be3 d6 9 Bd3 Nd7 10 Qd2 a6 11 Bc2
c5 12 Rd1 g5 13 0-0 g4 14 Ne1 Nc6 15 Ne2 Qe7 16 b4 cxd4 17 Nxd4 Nce5 18 Qe2
Rc8 19 Bb3 Bxe4 20 Bc1 Bb7 21 Nec2 Rg8 22 Kh1 Nf3 23 gxf3 Be5 24 Rg1 Qh4 25
Rg3 Bxg3 26 fxg3 gxf3 27 Qf2 Rxg3 28 Ne3 Rh3 29 Kg1 Qxf2+ 30 Kxf2 Rxh2+ 31
Kg3 Rh5 32 Nxf3 Ke7 33 Re1 Rg8+ 34 Kf2 Bxf3 35 Kxf3 Ne5+ 36 Ke2 Rh2+ 37 Kd1
Nd3 38 Rf1 Rg3 39 Bd2 Nf2+ 40 Ke1 Nd3+ 41 Kd1 Nf2+ 42 Ke1 Ne4 43 Bc1 Rhh3 44
Ke2 Rxe3+ 0-1  Wohl has played over 1000 world rated games in the last 10
  GM Humpy Koneru(IND 2600) the top seed is in first place on 5.5/8 with
three games to play in the FIDE Women's Grand Prix tournament in
Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. IM Munguntuul Batkhuyag (2418) of Mongolia is the
only player to have defeated Koneru in the event which attracted four former
Women's World Champions - Chiburdanidze(GEO),Zhu Chen(CHN),Stefanova(BUL)
and Xu Yuhua(CHN).   GM Aleksander Dronov (RUS 2617) has won the 22nd World
Correspondence Championship (2007-2010).
The Integra NSW State Championship organised by the NSW Chess Association
starts on Wednesday evening at Sydney Chess Centre,Burwood (Details tel
Brett Tindall 9745 1170 ). The championship held over nine consecutive
Wednesday evenings will be world rated and this year the title event is open
to all players from beginner to grandmaster. Greg Canfell has so far won the
NSW Title seven times (1996-2008). Spencer Crakanthorp won the title 6
times(1905-1933),his son-in-law Cecil Purdy 7 times(1929-1962),Koshnitsky
6.5 times(1932-1952 and co-winner 1930). The record is held by Lajos Steiner
the nine times winner (1940-1958) from 10 attempts.

Caruana wins Biel

Peter Parr (2/8/10)

 Italian GM Fabiano Caruana aged 17 won the Biel,Switzerland Young Grandmasters tournament after winning the 3 player rapid-play off matches.    M.Rodshtein v A.Giri  1. Nf3 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. d4 d5 4. g3 Be7 5. Bg2 O-O 6. O-O dxc4 7. Qc2 a6 8. Qxc4 b5 9. Qc2 Bb7 10. Bd2 Be4 11. Qc1 Bb7 12. a3 Qc8 13. b4 Nc6 14. Qb2 a5 15. bxa5 Nxa5 16. Qxb5 Bc6 17. Qb2 Rb8 18. Bb4 Bd5 19. Nc3 Nc6 20. Nxd5 Nxd5 21. Rfc1 Ncxb4 22. axb4 Rxb4 23. Qc2 c5 24. e3 Rb8 25. dxc5 Rb5 26. c6 Rc5 27. Qxc5 Bxc5 28. Rxc5 Qb8 29. Nd4 Nc7 30. Rcc1 Qb4 31. Rcb1 Qc5 32. Rb7 Nd5 33. Bxd5 Qxd5 34. Rc1 Rc8 35. Rcb1 g6 36. Rb8 Qd8 37. Rxc8 Qxc8 38. Rc1 Kg7 39. c7 1-0 (10 players,9 rounds,2658 av rating).

 Former World Champion Ruslan Ponomariov won in Dortmund, Germany a point ahead of bottom seed Liem Le Quang who finished in second place. Final scores(6 players,2731 av rating,10 rounds):- R.Ponomariov(UKR 2734) 6.5:L.Le Quang(VIE 2681) 5.5: V.Kramnik(RUS 2790),S.Mamedyarov(AZE 2761) 5: A.Naiditsch(GER 2684),P.Leko(HUN 2734) 4.

 GM Julian Radulski won the 92 player Najdorf Memorial in Warsaw,Poland scoring 7/9. FM Tomek Rej (AUS 2344) scored 5/9(half a point below an IM norm) gaining 15 of the 56 rating points he needs for the International Master(IM) Title. Rej completed his IM Norms with a double norm in the 2009 Zonal in Qld and his final norm in the Doeberl Cup in Canberra - Easter April 2010.

  The World Junior Championship 3-16 August is in Czarna,Poland. Three Canberra players are representing Australia. Sherab Guo-Yuthok(1975) and Girls Olympian WFM Emma Guo(1954) and Tamzin Oliver(1737). IM Gary Lane(Sydney,2367) is the coach.

 ANU Grand Prix in Canberra leading final scores (35 players,7 rounds)- IM A.Toth(HUN 2332) 6,GM Z.Zhao(NSW 2585),J.Ikeda(ACT 2307) 5.5,GM D.Smerdon(ACT 2511),Y.Yuan(ACT 2058) 5. Hweimeeh Chai(NSW 1403) won the 42 player supporting under 1600 rated event scoring 6.5/7. IM George Xie will be conducting a simultaneous exhibition on Tuesday evening 10 August at Norths,Cammeray (cost $20 per player) with all the proceeds in support of the Olympiad Appeal.

Results of the NSW Chess association Inter-Club grade match competition : Under 2150 - Parramatta Dolphins 21.5/36: St. George 17: Norths 16: Parramtta Eels 13.5.  Under 1800 - St.George Dragons 22/36: Norths 19: St.George Saints 17.5: Harbord Diggers 13.5.  Under 1600 - St. George Saints 23/28: Norths Grizzlies 20.5: Parramatta 18: Norths Brown Bears 13.5: Rooty Hill 12.5: Harbord Diggers and Ryde-Eastwood 11.5: St George Dragons 9.5.  Under 1400 - Parramatta Yellow 21.5/28: Ryde-Eastwood Knights 18.5: Parramatta Blue 17.5: St. George 14.5: Norths 12: Rooty Hill 12: Harbord Diggers 10.5: Ryde Eastwood Hawks 9.5. 

 Garden Games, a weekly Saturday community initiative founded by Christian Carter providing popular board games for the public to play since 2006 presented a cheque for $1500 to three local charities supporting the homeless on Saturday 31 July at Fitzroy Gardens, Kings Cross. The seven round Canterbury Winter Swiss at Lakemba Services Memorial Club and the nine round Rooty Hill RSL Open start this evening.  The Integra NSW State Championship will be held over nine consecutive Wednesday evenings starting on 11 August at Sydney Chess Centre, Burwood. The event with a history spanning over 100 years is the most prestigious tournament on the NSW Chess calendar. The championship will be world rated and this year will be held as a Swiss system tournament open to all players from beginner to grandmaster.

Ponomariov leads Dortmund

Peter Parr (26/7/10)

 Former World Champion Ruslan Ponomariov is a full point ahead of his closest rivals with one round to play in Dortmund,Germany. Ponomariov lost his first game to Liem Le Quang of Vietnam but defeated his four other opponents 1.5-0.5. Le Quang will tie for first place if he defeats Ponomariov for the second time in the final round.

 A.Naiditsch 2684 v S.Mamedyarov 2761 Sicilian Najdorf B90 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. Bc4 e6 7. Bb3 Nbd7 8. f4 Nc5 9. O-O Nfxe4 10. Nxe4 Nxe4 11. f5 e5 12. Qh5 d5! 13. Re1 Bc5 14. Rxe4 Bxd4+ 15. Kh1 (15 Be3 Topalov-Short 1996) Qf6 16. Re1 Bxf5 17. c3 Ba7 18. Bxd5 O-O 19. Rf1 Qd6 20. Rxf5 Qxd5 21. Rxe5 Rae8 22. Bf4 Rxe5 23. Qxe5 Qxe5 24. Bxe5 f6 25. Bc7 Re8 26. Rd1 Re2 27. b3 Rxa2 28. g3 Ra3 29. Rb1 h5 30. Bd6 Ra2 31. Re1 Rd2 32. Bb8 Bxb8 33. Re8+ Kf7 34. Rxb8 Rd7 35. Kg2 Ke6 36. Kf3 Kf5 37. h3 Rd3+ 38. Kf2 b5 39. Rc8 h4 40. gxh4 Rxh3 41. Rc7 Kg6 42. Rc6 b4 43. cxb4 Rxh4 44. Rb6 Re4 45. Kf3 Kf5 46. Rb7 g5 47. b5 a5 0-1

 Progress scores after round nine(6 players,2731 average rating,10 rounds) R.Ponomariov(UKR 2734) 6,L.Le Quang (VIE 2681),S.Mamedyarov(AZE 2761) 5,A.Naiditsch (GER 2684),V.Kramnik(RUS 2790) 4,P.Leko(HUN 2734) 3. Fabiano Caruana of Italy leads the Biel,Switzerland Young Grandmasters tournament with four out of six (10 players,9 rounds,average age 19,av rating 2658)

 Australian Open Champion IM Aleks Wohl 2375 improved his rating in Leiden(NED) scoring 6.5/9 half a point behind the joint winners GM P.Nikolic 2592,GM S.Tiviakov 2623 and IM E.Wiersma 2405. Bulgarian Grandmaster Julian Radulski 2574 leads the Najdorf Memorial in Warsaw,Poland with 6.5/8. FIDE Master Tomek Rej of Sydney(AUS 2344) has scored 1.5/4 against Grandmasters including a draw with B.Maceija (POL 2639) and the following win.

 T.Rej (FM 2344) v K.Jakubowski (GM POL 2506) 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 a6 5. Nc3 d6 6. Be3 b5 7. Qd2 Nf6 8. f3 Nbd7 9. O-O-O Bb7 10. g4 Nb6 11. Qf2 Nfd7 12. e5 b4 13. Ne4 dxe5 14. Nxe6 fxe6 15. Rd6 Nd5 16. Rxe6+ Kf7 17. Ng5+ Kg8 18. Bc4 Rc8 19. b3 Qa5 20. Qe2 Qxa2?? 21. Rxa6!! (black could resign) Rxc4 22. Rxa2 Rc3 23. Bd2 Nc5 24. Kb2 h5 25. Bxc3 bxc3+ 26. Kb1 hxg4 27. Qxe5 gxf3 28. Qe8 1-0     Rej also defeated IM J.Bernasek(CZE 2514) and needs to increase his rating to 2400 to gain the International Master Title.

 The sixth World Schools Championships with 500 children from 30 countries is in progress in Kayseri,Turkey.  The World Chess Federation (FIDE) Board Meeting has started in Tromso,Norway. The Chess Olympiad with 1600 participants is being held in Khanty-Mansiysk,Siberia 19 Sep-4 Oct 2010.The Olympic Hotel was inspected on Friday 23 July by FIDE Vice-President Israel Gelfer. There is a lot more work to be done for the completion of the Olympic Hotel Complex and Gelfer expressed serious concerns on the logistics of catering and contracts for food.

 The World Title Challenger will be the winner of the 2011 eight player knock-out Candidates Matches. The pairings are Topalov-Kamsky,Carlsen-Radjabov,Kramnik-Mamedyarov,Aronian-Gelfand.  The Russian Chess Federation has asked FIDE to move the matches from Baku,Azerbaijan to Kazan,Russia but World no 2 Topalov(BUL) does not agree to play in Russia.

 Leading final scores in the NSWCA Rapid Championship at Burwood (45 players,7 rounds) Max Illingworth 7/7,Neil Wright 6,Subramanian Singaram and Peter Abbott 6. A seven round Winter swiss tournament starts on Monday evening 2 August at Lakemba Services Memorial Club. The nine round Rooty Hill RSL Open also starts on Monday evening 2 August.

Bernard Chau wins NSW

Junior Championship

Peter Parr (19/7/10)

 Fourteen-year-old Bernard Chau has won the 2010 NSW Junior Championship,half a point ahead of City of Sydney Junior Champion John Papantoniou. The field of 42 players was one of the strongest in many years,with only two of the top active juniors missing - the 2009 champion Pengyu Chen(in Beijing) and Anton Smirnov(overseas). Cedric Koh convincingly won the NSW Under 12 title,finishing two and a half points ahead of his closest rivals.

  Leading final scores(9 rounds):Bernard Chau 7.5,John Papantoniou 7,Benjamin Encel 6.5,Andrew Pan,Jack Ruan,Oscar Wang 6. Under 12 (39 players,10 rounds):Cedric Koh 9.5,Eric Pan,Edmund Yu,Joshua Behar 7.  The NSW Junior League's Winter One and Two-Day Tournaments were won by Jerome Harman and Benjamin Encel respectively. Leading final scores-One Day(134 players,9 rounds): Jerome Harman 8,Benjamin Encel and Aidan Nguyen 7.5;Two-Day(127 players,11 rounds):Benjamin Encel 10,John Papantoniou 9.5,Tim Diemer and Eric Xu 8.5.

 The Asian Youth Championships in 12 divisions(U8,U10,U12,U14,U16,U18 boys and girls) in the Convention Center,Beijing attracted a record entry of 428 players from 20 countries (India 56,China 44,Vietnam 34 etc). Final scores of the four Australians from 9 games - U14 Pengyu Chen(NSW Junior Champion 2009) 5,U14 girls Caroline Shan(NSW Girls Champion 2009) 4,U10 Jamie-Lee Guo 3.5,U10 girls Grace Shan 1.  China won four golds as they garnered 10 medals(4G,3S,3B) followed by India with three golds in a fourteen medal harvest(3G,7S,4B). Vietnam finished third (3G,0S,1B).

 Australian Open Champion IM Aleks Wohl(2375) has scored 5.5/8 with one round to play in the A group in Leiden(NED). Wohl drew an exciting tactical game against top seed GM Sergei Tiviakov(NED 2623) in round 3.  Three Grandmasters S.Tiviakov(NED 2623),P.Nikolic(BIH 2592)and E.Van Den Doel(NED 2591)share the lead one point ahead of Wohl.

 Former World Champion Ruslan Ponomariov and Shakhriyar Mamedyarov(World no 6) are the joint leaders after three rounds in Dortmund,Germany. The top seed and nine times Dortmund winner ex-world champion Vladimir Kramnik was defeated by Ponomariov in the following game in the second round.

 R.Ponomariov 2734 v V.Kramnik 2790 E00 1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 e6 3 g3 Bb4+ 4 Bd2 Be7 5 Bg2 d5 6 Nf3 0-0 7 0-0 c6 8 Qc2 b6 9 Rd1 Ba6 10 Ne5 Qc8 11 Nc3 Nbd7 12 Rac1(N) Nxe5 13 dxe5 Nd7 14 cxd5 cxd5 15 Bf4 g5 16 Bxd5! exd5 17 Nxd5 Qd8 18 Nc7 Rc8 19 e6! fxe6 20 Qc6 Qe8 21 Qxe6+ Qf7 22 Qxf7+ Kxf7 23 Nxa6 gxf4 24 Rxc8 Rxc8 25 Rxd7 Rc2 26 Nb4 Rxb2 27 Nc6 Rxe2 28 Rxa7 f3 29 h4 h5 30 Rxe7+ Rxe7 31 Nxe7 Kxe7 32 g4 hxg4 33 Kh2 Ke6 34 Kg3 Kf5 35 a4 Ke4 36 Kxg4 1-0.   Progress scores after round 3 (6 players,2731 average rating,10 rounds):- R.Ponomariov(UKR 2734),S.Mamedyarov(AZE 2761) 2.5: V.Kramnik(RUS 2790),P.Leko(HUN 2734),A.Naiditsch(GER 2684),L.Le Quang(VIE 2681) 1

 The election of President of the World Chess Federation (FIDE) for the next four years will be held at the Chess Olympiad in Siberia in September. Each of the 170 FIDE member countries has one vote. There are two candidates.  Incumbent President for 15 years Kirsan Ilyumzhinov (also President of Kalmykia,Russia)has announced the support of 75 National Federations all listed on his website and former World Champion Anatoly Karpov(Russia) lists 23 National Federations(mostly from Europe) supporting Karpov on his website. Honduras,Bosnia and Russia are on both lists and Australia is not on either list at present.    The nine round Winter challenge tournaments in two divisions - open and under 1700 rated start on Monday 26 July at Eastern Suburbs Leagues Club,Bondi Junction. The next ACF Grand Prix weekender will be the ANU Open in Canberra 24-25 July.

Victory in World Open

Peter Parr (12/7/10)

 Viktor Laznicka, the 22-year-old Czech grandmaster, coasted to victory in the World Open (1200 players in nine divisions)Independence Day weekender in Pennsylvania, USA by winning his first six games and drawing the last three. Leading final scores in the title event (119 players including 35 grandmasters) V.Laznicka(CZE 2636) 7.5, P.Harikrishna(IND 2660),I.Smirin(ISR 2634),L.McShane(ENG 2623) 7.  Victor Shen won the 121 player main supporting event (Under 2400 rating) winning his first seven games and drawing the last two to score an easy victory with 8/9.

 Nana Dzagnidze won the Women's FIDE Grand Prix tournament in Jermuk,Armenia. 23-year-old GM Dzagnidze was World Girls under-12 champion in 1999 and World Girls under-20 champion in 2003. Leading final scores (12 players, 11 rounds) N.Dzagnidze (GEO 2478, Perf 2747) 9, T.Kosintseva (RUS 2534) 7.5, L.Mkrtchian (ARM 2477), ex-World Champion A.Stefanova (BUL 2560), E.Danielian (ARM 2473) 6.5, Y.Hou (CHN 2589) 6. The final two Grand Prix events will be held in Ulaanbaatar,Mongolia and Santiago,Chile. The overall Grand Prix winner will play a match for the Women's World Championship against the defending champion GM Alexandra Kosteniuk(Russia) starting on 2 December 2010 in Hatay,Turkey.

 Australian Open Champion IM Aleks Wohl(2412) led the 85-player Vins Du Medoc Open in France with 5/6 but lost his last round game against IM K.Terrieux (FRA 2429)finishing on 6/9(performance rating 2448) one point behind the winner IM M.Van Delft(NED 2364).

 The George Trundle Masters in Auckland was won in fine style by former Australian Champion IM Guy West who has represented Australia in nine Olympiads since 1980. His opponent in the following game FM Bob Smith has competed in 12 Olympiads for New Zealand and will play on board 1 for the first time in the September 2010 Olympiad in Siberia.  R.Smith (NZL 2273)v G.West (AUS 2325) C 50  1. e4 Nc6 2. Nf3 e5 3. d4 exd4 4. Nxd4 d6 5. Nc3 Nf6 6. Bc4 Be7 7. O-O O-O 8. Bb3 Na5 9. Nde2 Nxb3 10. axb3 Re8 11. h3 Bf8 12. Ng3 b6 13. Qf3 Bb7 14. Bg5 Re6 15. Nd5 Be7 16. Nf5? Nxd5 17. exd5 Bxg5 18. h4 Be7 19. Qc3 Rf6 20. Qd3 Qd7 0-1

 348 players from 20 countries are competing in the Asian Youth Championships in Beijing. Progress scores of the four Australians after round 3 ; U-14 Open Pengyu Chen(NSW Junior Champion) 2,U-14 Girls Caroline Shan(NSW Girls Champion) 2,U-10 Open Jamie-Lee Guo 0.5,U-10 girls Grace Shan 0. The Australian Junior Chess League's Johns-Putra Jets(Junior Elite Training Squad) tournament(28 players,7 rounds) in Sydney resulted in a triple-tie for first place between Olympian WFM Emma Guo,Andrew Pan(Australian Under-12 Champion) and Ari Dale(Victorian U-12 Champion 2009) each scoring 5.5 points.

 Grandmasters David Smerdon (ACT 2511) and Darryl Johansen (VIC 2360) tied for first place in the Lidums Checkmate Open in Adelaide each scoring 5.5 out of 7. Smerdon was undefeated but Johansen lost to IM Mark Chapman (SA 2296) and recovered to win his last four games. FM Erik Teichmann (VIC 2321) and IM James Morris (VIC 2213) tied for third place on 5 points.

 The NSW Rapid Championship organised by the New South Wales Chess Association will be held next Sunday 18 July at Sydney Chess Centre in Burwood. The seven round (20 minutes per game plus 10 seconds per move) is open to all players. Contact is NSWCA tournaments officer Lou Damaschino (Tel 0411 457 733).

Dzagnidze Dazzles in Jermuk

Peter Parr (5/7/10)

 Nana Dzagnidze has scored a dazzling 8/9(performance 2826)in one of the strongest women's tournaments of all time. There are three former World Women's Champions Maia Chiburdanidze(GEO),Antoaneta Stefanova(BUL) and Xu Yuhua(CHN) and top seed Hou Yifan(CHN 2589)competing in the FIDE Grand Prix event in Jermuk,Armenia. Leading scores after round nine (12 players,11 rounds) N.Dzagnidze(GEO 2478) 8,T.Kosintseva(RUS 2534) 7,L.Mkrtchian(ARM 2477) 5.5.

 Top 10 players on the July World Rating List (average age 30)- M.Carlsen NOR 2826,V.Topalov BUL 2803,V.Anand IND 2800,V.Kramnik RUS 2790,L.Aronian ARM 2783,S.Mamedyarov AZE 2761,A.Grischuk RUS 2760,P.Eljanov UKR 2755,A.Shirov ESP 2749,T.Radjabov AZE 2748.  Women - J.Polgar HUN 2682,H.Koneru IND 2600,Y.Hou CHN 2577. Leading Australians - GM Z.Zhao 2583(world no 273),GM D.Smerdon 2526(world no 579),IM G.Xie 2478(world no 1013),IM J.Gil 2444,IM S.Solomon 2423,GM D.Johansen 2420,IM I.Goldenberg 2386,IM A.Wohl 2375,IM G.Lane 2373,FM I.Bjelobrk 2349. Women - WM A.Caoili 2243,IM I.Berezina 2238,WM B.Dekic 2104,WM A.Jule 1970,WFM E.Guo 1965. Country rank by average rating of the top ten players (151 countries)- Russia 2734 (average age 27),Ukraine 2692 (28),France 2647 (30),China 2645 (27). Australia 2436 (average age 38!) is ranked 57 out of 151 countries.  

 Australian Champion Grandmaster Zong-Yuan Zhao won the 26 player Gold Coast Open in Mudgeeraba playing six titled players from seven games and conceding only half a point to second seed IM George Xie.  Z.Zhao 2585 v G.Nakauchi 2009  1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. c3 d5 4. e5 Nc6 5. d4 Qb6 6. a3 c4 7. Nbd2 Na5 8. g3 Bd7 9. h4 Ne7 10. Bh3 Nc8 11. O-O Qc7 12. h5 Nb6 13. h6 g6 14. Nh2 Ba4 15. Qf3 Be7 16. Ng4 Nd7 17. Qe2 O-O-O 18. f4 Kb8 19. Nf3 Nb3 20. Rb1 a5 21. Be3 b5 22. Ng5 Rdf8 23. Nh2 Kb7 24. Nhf3 Nb8 25. g4 Qc6 26. Bg2 Na6 27. Rf2 b4 28. axb4 axb4 29. f5 Nc7 30. Rbf1 Nb5 31. Qe1 bxc3 32. bxc3 exf5 33. gxf5 f6 34. Nxh7 Rxh7 35. fxg6 Rhh8 36. g7 Na5 37. exf6 Qxf6 38. Ne5 Qd6 39. gxh8=Q (39 Rxf8 Rxf8 40 Rxf8 Bxf8 41 g8(Q)! also wins) Rxh8 40. Nf7 1-0. Leading final scores GM Z.Zhao(NSW 2585) 6.5,M.Ly(QLD 2283),IM G.Xie(NSW 2475),FM G.Nakauchi(QLD 2009),IM J.Morris(VIC 2213) 5,J.Muller(QLD 1894) 4.5

¬†North Sydney Boys High and Sydney Boys High dominated this year's Secondary Schools One-Day Teams Tournament. North Sydney Boys High convincingly won the Open Division and with it the Terrey Shaw Shield. Second was Sydney Boys High, which also won the Junior Division (for players in Years 7 to 9), just ahead of James Ruse High.¬† Leading final scores (7 rounds) Ė Open Division (18 teams): North Sydney Boys High 18, Sydney Boys High 14.5, Knox Grammar 14; Junior Division (18 teams): Sydney Boys High 16.5, James Ruse 16, Marist College Eastwood 15.

¬†The NSW Junior Chess League is conducting a one-day tournament this Wednesday and a two-day tournament on Thursday and Friday Ė these tournaments are suitable for players of all standards. The NSW Junior Championships will be held the following week and GM Ian Rogers will be present for post-game analysis with the players. For details see www.nswjcl.org.au or contact Richard Gastineau-Hills, phone 9412 4579.

 Tristan Stevens won the Easts,Bondi Junction Autumn tournament scoring 9/9 three points ahead of his closest rivals. The NSW State Championship organised by the NSW Chess Association will be held at Sydney Academy of Chess,Burwood. The World Rated event commencing on Wednesday evening 11 August is open to the first 60 entrants (nine round swiss)and finishes on Wednesday evening 6 October.

King Carlsen

Peter Parr (28/6/10)

Nineteen-year-old Magnus Carlsen won the Kings Super GM tournament in Medias,Romania(5 wins,5 draws) a full two points clear of the field (rating performance - an amazing 2918). Carlsen gained 13 rating points from the event confirming his current status as the king of world chess. The top 3 live World ratings (27 Jun) are Carlsen 2826,Topalov 2803,Anand(World Champion) 2800.

  Wang Yue 2752 v M.Carlsen 2813 D85 Gruenfeld Defense Rd 10 1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 g6 3 Nc3 d5 4 cxd5 Nxd5 5 Bd2 Bg7 6 e4 Nb6 7 Be3 0-0 8 Bb5 Be6 9 Nge2 c6 10 Bd3 Nc4 11 Bxc4 Bxc4 12 0-0 Nd7 13 Qd2 Qa5 14 Rfd1 Rad8 15 Bh6 Bxe2 16 Nxe2? Qxd2 17 Bxd2 Nb6 18 Bc3 Rd7 19 b3 f5 20 f3 Rfd8 21 Re1 fxe4 22 fxe4 e5! 23 dxe5 Rd3 24 g3 Nd7 25 e6 Bxc3 26 Nxc3 Ne5 27 Red1 Kf8 28 Rac1 Ke7 29 Rxd3 Rxd3 30 Rc2 Nf3+ 31 Kf1 Nd4 32 Rc1 Kxe6 33 Rd1 Rxc3 34 Rxd4 Rc2 35 a4 Rxh2 36 a5 Rh5 37 b4 Rh2 38 a6 b5 39 e5 Ra2 40 Rd6+ Kxe5 41 Rxc6 Kf5 42 Rc7 Rxa6 43 Rxh7 Kg4 44 Kf2 Ra2+ 45 Ke3 g5 46 Rg7 Rb2 47 Rxa7 Kxg3 0-1   Final scores (6 players,2742 average rating,10 rounds) M.Carlsen(NOR 2813) 7.5,T.Radjabov(AZE 2740),B.Gelfand(ISR 2741) 5.5,R.Ponomariov(UKR 2733) 4.5,L.Nisipeanu (ROM 2672) 4,Wang Yue(CHN 2752) 3.5. 

Vassily Ivanchuk won the Capablanca Memorial Tournament in Havana, Cuba above nineteen-year-old European Champion Ian Nepomniachtchi. N.Short 2685 v I.Nepomniachtchi 2695 B23 Closed Sicilian  1. e4 c5 2. Nc3 d6 3. f4 Nc6 4. Nf3 g6 5. d4 cxd4 6. Nxd4 Bg7 7. Be3 Nf6 8. Be2 Bd7 9. Nb3 Rc8 10. O-O O-O 11. Qe1 a6 12. Kh1 b5 13. Rd1 Nb4 14. Rd2 Nxc2 15. Rxc2 b4 16. Bxa6 Ra8 17. Bd3 bxc3 18. bxc3 Ra4 19. e5 Nd5 20. Bd4 Bc6 21. Rd2 Qa8 22. exd6 exd6 23. Bxg7 Re8 24. Qa1 Ne3 25. Rg1 Nxg2 26. Rgxg2 Rxa2 27. Rxa2 Qxa2 28. Bf1 Bxg2+ 0-1.

Final scores (6 players, 2700 average rating, 10 rounds) V.Ivanchuk(UKR 2741) 7(perf 2841), I.Nepomniachtchi (RUS 2695) 6,L.Dominguez Perez(CUB 2713),N.Short(ENG 2685) 5.5,E.Alekseev(RUS 2700),L.Bruzon(CUB 2668) 3.

 The One World One Vision team has announced the first 50 National Chess Federations who have confirmed in writing that they will be voting in favour of Kirsan Ilyumzhinov,President of Kalmykia,Russia as FIDE President for another four year term at the FIDE elections in September in Siberia. Ilyumzhinov in Manila,Philippines guaranteed earlier this month from his personal funds US $1 million for 10 Campomanes Memorial tournaments in 10 Asean countries over 10 years. On June 20 in Havana he guaranteed US $500,000 prizemoney over 5 years for new tournaments in Latin American countries. Last week Ilyumzhinov was in Armenia (World's largest Chess Academy 2500 sq m in Yerevan,and Womens GP in Jermuk),Slovenia(World Youth 2012),Turkey(Chess Olympiad 2012 in Istanbul),and Croatia(World Amateur 2012).  

 The Queensland Gold Coast Open Grand Prix Weekender in Mudgeeraba 26-27 Jun attracted 113 players in 3 divisions. Leading scores after round 4 in the main event(26 players,7 rounds) - Australian Champion GM Z.Zhao(NSW 2585) and M.Ly(QLD 2283) 3.5,IM G.Xie(NSW 2475),IM S.Solomon(QLD 2387),K.Sheldrick(SA 2095),IM J.Morris(VIC 2213),FM G.Nakauchi(QLD 2009) 3 The next GP event is the Lidums Checkmate Open in Adelaide 3-4 July.

 The NSW Junior Chess League's activities in the coming school holidays include a coaching clinic on Monday 5 July, one-day and two-day tournaments later that week and the NSW Junior Championships in the following week. The coaching clinic caters for young players of different levels and includes a class for beginners who do not yet know the moves. The one- and two-day tournaments are suitable for players of all strengths, including players new to competitive chess. For details see www.nswjcl.org.au or contact Richard Gastineau-Hills, phone 9412 4579.

Zhao wins NSW Open

Peter Parr (21/6/10)

 Grandmaster Zong-Yuan Zhao,the Australian Champion and Australia's no 1 player, won the Integra NSW Chess Association Open weekend tournament (record total 148 entries) at Parramatta RSL. Former Australian Champion IM Gary Lane and IM George Xie tied for second place. Xie now needs to gain 22 rating points for his grandmaster title. Leading final scores (66 players, 7 rounds) - GM Z.Zhao (NSW 2583) ($1400) 6: IM G.Lane (NSW 2367) ($750), IM G.Xie (NSW 2482) ($750) 5.5: G.Oliver (ACT 2192), J.Hu (NSW 2191), FM T.Rej (NSW 2344), S.Chowdhury (BAN 2097), A.Saleh (INA 1887), S.Berezovski (NSW 2152), FM B.Jones (NSW 2068) all 5.

  The under 1600 rated tournament (82 players, 7 rounds) resulted in a four way tie for first place between W.Lo (ACT 1493), A.Chibnall (ACT 1526), M.Stokes (QLD 1550) and M.Bennett (ACT 1395) each scoring 6 points.

 The annual Secondary Schools One-Day Teams Tournament for the Terrey Shaw Shield will be held on Sunday 27th June. The event commemorates International Master Terrey Shaw,a Sydney barrister who represented Australia with distinction in nine consecutive Chess Olympiads and who died in 1997.  The tournament is sponsored by Terrey Shaw's former colleagues in the legal profession and in the chess community. For details see the NSW Junior Chess League's website www.nswjcl.org.au or phone Richard Gastineau-Hills, 9412-4579.

 World Under-12 Champion FM Bobby Cheng (VIC 2290) $1000 and FM Erik Teichmann (VIC 2375) $1000 tied for first place on 6/7 in the Victorian Open Championship (89 players, 7 rounds). Grandmaster David Smerdon (ACT 2531) and Christopher Wallis (VIC 2223) were equal third on 5.5 points. T.Dowden (1948) and A.Dyer (1929) tied for first on 5.5/6 in the 25 player Tasmanian Open in Burnie.

 SA Champion K.Sheldrick (2095) and M.Kaisar (UNR) tied for 1st on 5/6 in the 20 player Adelaide weekender. Leading scores in the Yulgilbar - Think Big Australian Grand Prix after 26 of 51 events - IM G.Xie(NSW) 80.67,GM Z.Zhao(NSW) 72.50,FM E.Teichmann(VIC) 49.42,FM B.Cheng(VIC) 45.33,GM D.Smerdon(ACT) 38.42. The next Grand Prix Weekender will be at the Gardiner Chess Centre, Mudgeeraba, Gold Coast, QLD on 26-27 June.

 Here is the most exciting game from the Karpov Poikovsky (Russia) tournament.  A.Riazantsev 2674 v S.Karjakin 2739 E15 Queen's Indian 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 b6 4. g3 Ba6 5. Qc2 Bb7 6. Bg2 c5 7. d5 exd5 8. cxd5 Nxd5 9. O-O Be7 10. Qe4! Na6 11. Nh4 g6 12. Nf5 (the piece sacrifice is good for white) gxf5 13. Qe5 O-O 14. Qxf5 Re8 15. Nc3 Nac7 16. Be4 Bf6 17. Qxh7+ Kf8 (black has counterplay)  18. Bxd5 Bxd5 19. Nxd5 Nxd5 20. e4 Nc7 21. Bh6+ Ke7 22. e5 Bxe5 23. Qe4 f6 24. f4 d5 25. Qh7+ Kd6 26. fxe5+ fxe5 27. Rf7 Ne6 28. Qg6 Kc6 29. Raf1 d4 30. R1f6 Qd5 31. Rxa7 Rad8 32. a4 c4 33. Qf7(better was Bf8) Kc5! (now black is OK) 34. Bd2 c3 35. Rc7+ Kb4 36. bxc3+ Kb3 37. c4 Qd6 38. Rb7 d3 39. a5 Qd4+ 40. Kf1 Qe4 41. Kg1 Kc2 42. Rxb6 Kxd2 43. Rbxe6 Rxe6 44. Qxe6 Kc2 45. c5 Qd5 46. Qg4 Qd4+ 47. Rf2+ d2 48. Qf3 e4 49. Qf7 Kc3 0-1

 Leading final scores (12 players,2695 average rating, 11 rounds) S.Karjakin (UKR 2739)-winner on count-back, V.Bologan (MDA 2668) 7: D.Jakovenko (RUS 2725), N.Vitiugov (RUS 2707) 6.5,A.Riazantsev(RUS 2674) 6.  Progress scores at the half-way stage of the Kings Tournament in Medias, Romania (6 players, 2742 average rating, 10 rounds). M.Carlsen (NOR 2813 - World no 1) 3.5/5 (performance 2876),T.Radjabov(AZE 2740) and B.Gelfand(ISR 2741) 3.

  The Icelandic Supreme Court has ruled that the remains of chess genius Bobby Fischer are to be exhumed to determine whether he was the father of nine-year-old Jinky Young.

Record entry in NSW Open

Peter Parr  (SMH 14/6/10)

 The Integra NSW Open Weekender organised by the New South Wales Chess Association at Parramatta RSL has attracted a record entry of 148 players in two divisions (124 in 2009).

  Lower rated players scored very well in the second round on the top boards. GM Z.Zhao(2583) 0.5-A.Huynh(2025) 0.5, J.Papantoniou(1991) 1 IM G.Xie(2482) 0, WFM E.Guo(1954) 0.5 FM T.Rej(2344) 0.5, A.Ayvazyan(2226) 0.5 M.Ali(1931) 0.5, A.Smirnov(1926,aged 9!) 1 J.Bolens(2154,lost his queen after 15 moves!) 0, S.Berezovski(2152)0.5-J.Ruan(1911)0.5, G.Lester(1905)1 B.Atzmon-Simon(2147) 0.

 Nine players shared the lead with 2/2 (but only 3 of the top 10 seeds)in the 66 player main event with 82 in the supporting tournament for competitors rated below 1600.

 The top seeds in the 90 player Victorian Open W/E in Melbourne - GM D.Smerdon 2511,IM S.Solomon 2387,IM I.Goldenberg 2336,FM E.Teichmann 2321,FM B.Cheng 2280,IM J.Morris 2213,IM M.Rujevic 2193 all won their first two games. 25 are in the Tasmanian Open W/E in Burnie and 20 in Adelaide(top seed IM M.Chapman 2296). All the four Weekenders are events in the Yulgilbar-Think Big Australian Chess Grand Prix (leading scores IM G.Xie NSW 58.17, GM Z.Zhao NSW 42.50).

 The eleventh Karpov Poikovsky(Russia) 11 round GM Tournament is once again very strong with the average rating of 2695 from the 12 players. Here are two interesting games from the event. E.Sutovsky 2661 v A.Onischuk 2699 C78 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Bc5 6. c3 O-O 7. d4 Ba7 8. Bg5 h6 9. Bh4 exd4 10. cxd4 d6 11. Bxc6 bxc6 12. Nbd2 g5 13. Nxg5 hxg5 14. Bxg5 Re8 15. Qa4 Rb8 16. Rae1 Re6 17. e5 dxe5 18. dxe5 Rxb2 19. Bxf6 Qd4 20. Qa3 Rxf6 21. exf6 Rxd2 22. Re8+ Kh7 23. Rh8+ Kg6 24. Qg3+ Kxf6 25. Rxc8 Rd3 26. Qg8 1-0

 I.Sokolov 2654 v D.Jakovenko 2725 E46 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. e3 O-O 5. Nge2 d5 6. a3 Bd6 7. Ng3 Nbd7 8. cxd5 exd5 9. Nf5 Nb6 10. Nxd6 Qxd6 11. Bd3 Be6 12. a4 Rfe8 13. a5 Nc8 14. Qc2 Qd7 15. f3 Nd6 16. g4 Rac8 17. g5 Nh5 18. Bxh7+ Kh8 19. Bd3 c5 20. dxc5 d4 21. cxd6 dxc3 22. bxc3 Nf4 23. Be4 Nh3 24. Ra4 Nxg5 25. Rg1 f6 26. Rd4 Rc4 27. Ba3 Rec8 28. Bb4 Rxd4 29. exd4 Re8 30. Kd1 Nxe4 31. fxe4 Bg8 32. Kc1 Bh7 33. Re1 b6 34. a6 Qb5 35. Qe2 Qa4 36. Kb2 Rxe4 37. Qxe4! Bxe4 38. Rxe4 Kh7 39. Re7 Qd1 40. d7 Qd2+ 41. Ka3 b5 42. Ba5 1-0 Leading scores after round 10 - D.Jakovenko(RUS 2725),V.Bologan(MDA 2668),N.Vitiugov(RUS 2707),S.Karjakin(UKR 2739) all 6 points.

 Italy won the open and womens divisions of the 10 countries European Mitropa Cup Team Competition in Switzerland. Seventeen-year-old GM Fabiano Caruana 2675 (GM at 14) achieved an excellent result on top board for Italy scoring 6.5/8(5 wins,3 draws) for a 2780 rating performance.  Sixteen-year-old GM Wesley So 2665(GM at 14) has won the Philippines Championship in Tagaytay City scoring 8.5/10(7 wins,3 draws) for a 2749 rating performance.

 The President of the World Chess Federation (FIDE) Kirsan Ilyumzhinov(Russia) announced on Friday in Subic Freeport,Philippines a series of Campomanes Memorial Tournaments. Florencio Campomanes(Philippines) was President of FIDE 1982-1995 and passed away last month at the age of 83. Ilyumzhinov is donating a prize fund of one million US Dollars(AUS$1.177 million) for 10 tournaments over 10 years in Asean Countries - Philippines(Aug 2010 in Manila),Vietnam,Indonesia,Malaysia,Singapore,Myanmar,Thailand,Laos,Cambodia,and Brunei. 

One Player One Rating

Peter Parr (7/6/10)

 The FIDE General Secretary Ignatius Leong(Singapore)and FIDE Commercial Director Geoffrey Borg(Malta)gave an excellent presentation of The World Chess Federation(FIDE)at Norths,Cammeray,Sydney last Tuesday evening. Leong stressed the importance of one player one rating. FIDE has recently extended the World Rating List to players of all levels and in June 2010 there are over 113,000 FIDE rated players. The target within a few years is over one million. Most National Federations produce their own national rating lists and Australia is believed to be the only country(out of 170 FIDE member countries) that produces a national rapid rating list as well as a national rating list. Australian states calculate further separate rating lists for junior players. Leading Australian juniors may have four different ratings at present.

  The Elo rating system used by FIDE for many years which has the support of almost all National Federations will remain. FIDE will soon restructure FIDE rating fees so nations will pay no extra fees for many thousands of games. All nations will then be able to process results of players in all events in one and one only rating system giving players worldwide one rating - a FIDE rating. Leong and Borg were interested to read in the SMH that there are 8000 juniors competing in NSW schools. They strongly recommended Australian Chess Federation accredited teachers/trainers courses (Turkey has over 20,000 accredited teachers/trainers). The 2012 Chess Olympiad is in Istanbul,Turkey.

 The Chinese Championship held last week in Xinghu resulted in a triple tie for first place between Wang Hao(2722)-the winner on countback,Bu Xiangzhi(2681) and Zhou Jianchao(2652) each scoring 7.5/11. Wang Hao became a GM at the age of 16,Bu Xiangzhi was 13. The defending Chinese Champion Ding Liren,the youngest ever Chinese Champion(aged 16 in 2009) won the following game.  Ding Liren 2547 v Li Shilong 2514 E11 1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3 e6 3. c4 Bb4+ 4. Nbd2 b6 5. a3 Bxd2+ 6. Qxd2 Bb7 7. e3 O-O 8. Be2 d6 9. O-O Nbd7 10. b4 Ne4 11. Qc2 f5 12. d5 e5 13. Ne1 Ng5 14. f4 Ne4 15. Nf3 c6 16. dxc6 Bxc6 17. Bb2 Qe7 18. Rad1 Kh8 19. Ba1 Rae8 20. Qb2 h6 21. fxe5 Nxe5 22. Nxe5 dxe5 23. Bh5 Qg5 24. Bxe8 Rxe8 25. Qe2 Re6 26. Rf3 Qh5 27. b5 Bb7 28. Rd8+ Kh7 29. Rd7 Bc8 30. Rc7 Nd6 31. Rg3!! 1-0.  China is ranked third in the world based on the top ten rated players below only Russia and Ukraine - fourth is India. 

For the Australian June 2010 rating period there were 130 Tournaments rated (88 Classic, 42 Rapid) and 11134 games of which 6801 were in the ACF Classic rating system and 4333 were in the ACF Rapid rating system. Top 10 - GM Z.Zhao NSW 2585 (-21), GM D.Smerdon ACT 2511 (+1), IM G.Xie NSW 2475 (+12), IM A.Wohl NSW 2415 (=), IM S.Solomon QLD 2387 (+16), GM D.Johansen VIC 2360 (-52), FM I.Bjelobrk NSW 2354 (=), IM I.Goldenberg VIC 2336 (+8), FM M.Illingworth NSW 2333 (+30), FM J.Sales NSW 2327 (=). Senior over 80 - W.Leonhardt WA 1861, Over 70-FM A.Flatow NSW 2104, Over 60-IM M.Rujevic VIC 2193, Junior U-20 and U-18 - FM M.Illingworth NSW 2333, U-16 and U-14 World Under 12 Champion - FM B.Cheng VIC 2280, U-12 and U-10 A.Smirnov NSW 1863. Women - WIM A.Caoili QLD 2186, G.Nguyen SA 2101, IM I.Berezina-Feldman NSW 2048, WIM B.Dekic NSW 1966. Girls U-20 WFM E.Guo ACT 1843. 

The 7 round Integra NSW Open is the NSW Chess Association's premier weekend tournament held at Parramatta RSL 12-14 June. The total prize fund based on 125 entries is $9100. The main event has seven major prizes(1st $1400) and 9 rating prizes in 3 divisions. The Under 1600 rated tournament has 6 major prizes(1st $900) and 6 rating prizes in 2 divisions. Further details from Lou Damaschino tel 0411 457 733 or visit the NSWCA website www.nswca.org.au.

FIDE visits Sydney

Peter Parr (31/5/10)

 The General Secretary of the World Chess Federation (FIDE) Ignatius Leong (Singapore) and FIDE Commercial Director Geoffrey Borg(Malta)arrive in Sydney tomorrow morning and leave for New Zealand 36 hours later on Wednesday afternoon. A meeting open to all players and officials will be held at Norths,Cammeray on Tuesday evening. The election of FIDE President at the Chess Olympiad in September 2010 in Siberia will be a bitterly fought contest between Kalmykia(Russia) President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov (FIDE President since 1995) and former World Champion Anatoly Karpov (Russia). There are 171 Member Federations according to Ilyumzhinov on his "One World One Vision" website launched on Saturday.

 Pavel Eljanov  won the FIDE Grand Prix tournament in Astrakhan, Russia with a 2809 rating performance and his recent good form has taken him to No.6 on the daily updated world live ratings. The average rating of the players was very high and from the 91 games there were 61 draws with white winning 18 and black 12. The only game won by five-time Russian Champion Peter Svidler was against Boris Gelfand.

 P.Svidler 2735 v B.Gelfand 2741 C48 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. Nc3 Nc6 4. Bb5 Nd4 5. Bc4 d6 6. Nxd4 exd4 7. Nd5 Nd7 8. O-O g6 9. a3 Bg7 10. d3 O-O 11. Ba2 Nc5 12. Nf4 Kh8 13. Bd2 c6 14. Kh1 a5 15. f3 a4 16. Bb4 Na6 17. Be1 Nc7 18. Bf2 Bd7 19. Qd2 Qg5 20. h4 Qa5 21. Qc1 f5? 22. Bxd4! Bxd4 23. Nxg6+! Kg7 24. Nxf8 Kxf8 25. Qh6+ Ke7 26. c3 Bf6 27. Rfe1 f4 28. d4 Ne6 29. e5 dxe5 30. Qxh7+ Kd8 31. Qf7 1-0

 Leading final scores (14 players,2730 average rating,13 rounds) P.Eljanov (UKR 2751) 8, R.Ponomariov (UKR 2733), D.Jakovenko (RUS 2725), S.Mamedyarov (AZE 2763), E.Alekseev (RUS 2700) T.Radjabov (AZE 2740) all 7. The six FIDE Grand Prix events in Baku,Sochi,Elista,Nalchik,Jermuk and Astrakhan have now been completed. Levon Aronian(Armenia) and Teimour Radjabov(Azerbaijan) qualify for the Candidate Matches for the FIDE World Championship 2012.

 There were 24 selected players in the United States Championship in Saint Louis. The tournament was split after 7 rounds with the top 4 competing for the title.

The top seed and defending champion Hikaru Nakamura lost his title in the following game.

 Rd 9 H.Nakamura 2733 v Y.Shulman 2613 C18 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. e5 c5 5. a3 Bxc3+ 6. bxc3 Qa5 7. Bd2 Qa4 8. Nf3 Nc6 9. h4 cxd4 10. cxd4 Nge7 11. h5 Nxd4 12. Bd3 h6 13. Kf1 Nxf3 14. Qxf3 b6 15. Qg3 Ba6 16. Qxg7 Bxd3+ 17. cxd3 Rg8 18. Qxh6 Qd4 19. Re1 Qxd3+ 20. Kg1 Rc8 21. Bg5 Qf5 22. f4 Rc2 23. Rh2? (23 Qf6) Qd3 24. Qf6 Rxg5! 25. Qxg5 Qd4+ 26. Kh1 Qe3 0-1 Gata Kamsky drew the dramatic final game against Shulman with only seconds left on his clock to take the title that he last won in 1991.

 The World Rapid Cup held in Odessa,Ukraine 27-29 May was a 16 player knockout event. The four rapid games were all drawn in the final and the two blitz games were also drawn. The title was won by Sergey Karjakin(RUS 2739) in the decisive single Armageddon blitz game against Dmitry Jakovenko(RUS 2725). 20-year-old Karjakin  became the youngest grandmaster ever at the age of 12 and left Ukraine 10 months ago to live in Moscow.

 The NSW Chess Association Inter-Club grade match competition started last week with 24 teams from 6 clubs (St George 6,Parramatta and Norths 5,Harbord Diggers and Ryde-Eastwood 3,Rooty Hill 2). The 7 round NSWCA Integra NSW Open will be held at Parramatta RSL 12-14 June. There will be an Open event and a supporting event restricted to players rated below 1600. The prize fund based on 125 entries is $9100 (Open 1st $1400,2nd $900,3rd $600 etc and U1600 1st $900,2nd $600,3rd $400 etc.)

Olympiad Teams Selected

Peter Parr (24/5/10)

The Australian Chess Federation has announced the teams (subject to appeal) selected to represent Australia at the 39th Chess Olympiad in Khanty-Mansiysk,Siberia,Russia 19 Sep- 4 Oct 2010. The Open Team in board order is GM Z.Zhao (NSW 2583),GM D.Smerdon (ACT 2531),IM G.Xie (NSW 2482),GM D.Johansen (VIC 2420),IM S.Solomon(QLD 2434). The Women's Team in board order is WIM A.Caoili (QLD 2243),IM I.Berezina (NSW 2239),G.Nguyen(SA 2108),WIM B.Dekic (NSW 2091),WFM E.Guo (ACT 1954).

The funeral of Lloyd Fell(1918-2010) will be held at 10.15am this morning in the North Chapel,Northern Suburbs Crematorium,North Ryde. 91-year-old Fell,the most active competitive player for 65 years and grand old man of Australian chess passed away peacefully last Wednesday at Canterbury Hospital. Fell's early life was on the family farm through the Great Depression of the early 1930's and he worked on the railways until retirement. Fell was a keen draughts player from the late 1930's and won the Australian Checkers/Draughts Championship in Brisbane in the early 1950's.

 He learned to play chess in Hyde Park,Sydney at the late age of 21 in 1940 and entered his first ever chess tournament in 1944 - The City of Sydney Championship - and won the event. Lloyd also won the City of Sydney title in 1960,1962 and 1973. He won a very strong NSW State Championship in 1963 and just missed selection for Australia's first ever Olympiad Team in 1964. He was also Australian Correspondence Chess Champion in 1963 and 1985. Fell competed in nearly every major tournament,weekenders,inter-club and rapid-play for 6.5 decades including 46 consecutive Canberra Doeberl Cup Easter weekenders(1963-2008). He was noted for his fine endgame play. He will be sadly missed.

L.Fell v IM CJS Purdy(First World Correspondence Champion) Perth Aus Ch 1963 A83 1. d4 f5 2. e4 fxe4 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Bg5 Nc6 5. d5 Ne5 6. Qd4 Nf7 7. h4 c6 8. Bxf6 exf6 9. O-O-O f5 10. f3 c5 11. Qa4 exf3 12. Re1+ Be7 13. d6 Nxd6 14. Nd5 f2 15. Rxe7+ Qxe7 16. Nxe7 fxg1=Q 17. Rxg1 Kxe7 18. Qf4 Ne8 19. Qg5+ Kf8 20. Qxf5+ Nf6 21. Qxc5+ Ke8 22. Qc7 d5 23. Bb5+ Bd7 24.Re1+ 1-0

Harbord Diggers Club defeated Norths 11.5-8.5 in the first leg of the little board match played at Norths. Barak Atzmon-Simon (Norths 2057) defeated Michael Morris(Harbord 2098) on top board. A lecture by Grandmaster Ian Rogers on the recent Anand-Topalov World Championship Match will be held at the Sydney Chess Centre,Burwood(reservations tel 97451170) on Wednesday evening.

Leading final scores from the Commonwealth Championship in New Delhi: (302 players including 258 from India,11 rounds)- Pavel Maletin GM RUS 2584 and new Commonwealth Champion R.Laxman GM IND 2476 9, ex-world junior champion A.Gupta GM IND 2570,D.Bocharov GM RUS 2592,B.Lalith IM IND 2493 all 8.5.    Negi Parimarjan GM IND 2636 who started with 7.5/8 finished with 13 others on 8 points.    

Pavel Eljanov,the highest rated Ukraine player,has a full point lead with two games to play in the FIDE Grand Prix tournament in Astrakhan,Russia. Rd 8 - S.Mamedyarov (AZE 2763) v E.Alekseev (RUS 2700) 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 d5 4. g3 Bb4+ 5. Bd2 Be7 6. Bg2 c6 7. Qc2 O-O 8. O-O b6 9. b3 Nbd7 10. Rd1 Ba6 11. a4 Rc8 12. a5 c5 13. axb6 Qxb6 14. Qa2 Bb7 15. Ba5 Qa6(N) 16. dxc5 Nxc5 17. b4 Nce4 18. c5 Ng4? 19. Nd4 e5 20. Nf5 Qf6 21. Nxe7+ Qxe7 22. f3 Qg5 23. Qb3 Nxg3 24. hxg3 Ne3 25. Nd2 Nxd1 26. Nf1 f5 27. Rxd1 f4 28. Bh3! fxg3 29. Bxc8 Rxc8 30. e4 Rf8 31. exd5 e4 32. f4 Qxf4 33. Qxg3 1-0  Leading scores after 11 rounds (14 players,2730 average rating,13 rounds) P.Eljanov(UKR 2751) 7,R.Ponomariov(UKR 2733),D.Jakovenko(RUS 2725),V.Gashimov(AZE 2734),T.Radjabov(AZE 2740) all 6

Ilyumzhinov or Karpov

Peter Parr (17/5/10)

 The election of FIDE(World Chess Federation)President 2010-2014 (158 entitled to vote from 158 countries) will be held at the Chess Olympiad in Siberia in September. Three weeks ago the chairman of the Russian Chess Federation supervisory board Arkady Dvorkovich(chief economic advisor to Russian President Dmitry Medvedev)stated that the Federation had nominated 15-year incumbent President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov,President of the Russian Republic of Kalmykia,as its candidate for FIDE President 2010-2014.

  Seventeen of the thirty-two delegates of the RCF (and guest Garry Kasparov) attended their meeting on May 14 and voted 17-0 in favour of ex-world champion Anatoly Karpov. A separate meeting was held at the same time supporting Ilyumzhinov. Dvorkovich has called both meetings illegitimate. After the bizarre series of events within the RCF Ilyumzhinov and Karpov both confirmed the importance of democracy.  The Karpov 2010 Campaign cocktail party in New York City will be held tonight,Monday with Karpov,Kasparov and World no 1 Carlsen attending. Karpov already has the support of a number of major countries.

 The final stage of the FIDE Grand Prix is in progress in Astrakhan, Russia. The top two in the GP qualify for the March 2011 world championship candidates matches in Baku (AZE). In the following game Azeri GM Vugar Gashimov chose a solid variation of the Ruy Lopez. Gashimov gained the upper hand on the king-side. Ivanchuk's queen was trapped in the final position.

 V.Gashimov 2734 v V.Ivanchuk 2741 C88 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 O-O 8. h3 Bb7 9. d3 d6 10. a3 Nb8 11. Nbd2 Nbd7 12. Nf1 Re8 13. Ba2 Bf8 14. Ng5 Re7 15. f4 h6 16. Nf3 d5 17. fxe5 Nxe5 18. Nxe5 Rxe5 19. Bf4 Re8 20. e5 Nh7 21. d4 Ng5 22. Ng3 Ne6 23. Be3 g6 24. Rf1 Bg7 25. c3 c5 26. Qg4 Rc8 27. Rf2 Rc7 28. Raf1 Bc8 29. Qd1 c4 30. Bb1 Qh4 31. Kh2 a5 32. Ne2 Rf8 33. Qd2 Kh7 34. Rf6! (if 34 ...Bxf6 35 Rxf6 also traps the queen) Re7 35. R6f4 Nxf4 36. Rxf4 1-0

 Leading scores after 5 rounds (14 players, 2730 average rating, 13 rounds) Pavel Eljanov(UKR 2751) 3.5,Vugar Gashimov(AZE 2734),Ernesto Inarkiev(RUS 2669),Peter Leko(HUN 2735),Boris Gelfand(ISR 2741) 3

 There are 302 players from 15 countries competing in the 11 round Commonwealth Championship in New Delhi,India. Leading players from Russia,Ukraine,Azerbaijan,Uzbekistan,Turkmenistan,Kazakhstan and Argentina are included with only eight of the 54 Commonwealth Countries (258 from India) represented. The local hero seventeen-year-old GM Parimarjan Negi (2636) of New Delhi leads with 7.5/8 half-a-point ahead of twenty-three-year-old GM Pavel Maletin(RUS 2584).  The Guinness World record of the largest number of chess players playing the game together at the same time was 13446 players in Mexico City Central Square on 21 Oct 2006. The target of 20,000 players has been set for 24 Dec 2010 in Ahmadabad(India) in celebration of the World Champion's Viswanathan Anand (Chennai,India) successful defence of his title(6.5-5.5) last week against Veselin Topalov(Bulgaria).  

 Meanwhile in Sydney the first leg of the annual big board match was played last Tuesday with Norths, Cammeray obtaining a substantial lead of 30-20 against St.George in the bid to regain the John Kellner/Terrey Shaw Trophy. St George were out-rated on 12 of the top 20 boards but honours were even with a 5-5 score on the top 10 boards and a 5-5 result on the next 10 boards. FM Malcolm Stephens (Norths 2310) drew with IM George Xie (St George 2463) on board 1. Norths out-rated St George on all the bottom 30 boards winning 20-10. The NSW Chess Association inter-club grade match competition starts next Monday 24 May.

Anand retains World Title

Peter Parr (14/5/10)

 World Champion Viswanathan Anand (India) retained his world title by defeating former title-holder Veselin Topalov (Bulgaria) 6.5-5.5 in their match in Sofia, Bulgaria.

The score after eleven games stood at 5.5-5.5 with two wins each and seven draws.

 Game 12 V.Topalov (2805) v V.Anand (2787) D56

 1. d4 d5 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. Nc3 Be7 5. Bg5 h6 6. Bh4 O-O 7. e3 Ne4 (The solid Lasker Defence to the Queen's Gambit) 8. Bxe7 Qxe7 9. Rc1 c6 10. Be2 (More usual is 10.Bd3)

10...Nxc3 11. Rxc3 dxc4 12. Bxc4 Nd7 13. O-O b6 (Also played here is 13...e5, black plans on attacking the centre with c5) 14. Bd3 c5 15. Be4 Rb8 16. Qc2 Nf6 17. dxc5 Nxe4 18. Qxe4 bxc5 19. Qc2 (Black has been left with a weak pawn on c5 but has opened up lines for the activity of his pieces) 19...Bb7 20. Nd2 (If 20.Rxc5?! Bxf3 21.gxf3 gxf3 22.Rxb2!) 20...Rfd8 21. f3 Ba6N (up to 21.f3 had all been played before but 21...Ba6!? is a novelty) 22. Rf2 Rd7 23. g3 Rbd8 24. Kg2 Bd3 25. Qc1 Ba6 26. Ra3 (Not 26.Rxc5? Rxd2! winning material) 26...Bb7 27. Nb3 Rc7 28. Na5 Ba8 (Black preserves his powerful bishop which has so far circled the board) 29. Nc4 e5! (an energetic move which prepares to open up lines to the white king) 30. e4 f5!

 31. exf5? (31.Nd2 had to be played to maintain the pawn on e4) 31...e4! (Another excellent move) 32. fxe4?? (This move loses on the spot, the best chance was to play 32.Re3) 32...Qxe4+ 33. Kh3 Rd4 34. Ne3 Qe8! (Probably the move that Topalov missed when he played his 31st, the immediate threat is Qh5 mate! Black now has a winning attack) 35. g4 h5 (There is no escape for white) 36. Kh4 g5+ 37. fxg6 (Both 37.Kh3 and 37.Kxg5 also lose) 37...Qxg6 38. Qf1 Rxg4+ 39. Kh3 Re7 40. Rf8+ Kg7 41. Nf5+ Kh7 42. Rg3 Rxg3+ 43. hxg3 Qg4+ 44. Kh2 Re2+ 45. Kg1 Rg2+ 46. Qxg2 Bxg2 47. Kxg2 (After 47.Rf7+ Kg6! 48.Rg7+ Kxf5 49.Rxg4 hxg4! with a winning pawn ending. Anand must have worked all this out some moves before) 47...Qe2+ 48. Kh3 c4 49. a4 a5 50. Rf6 Kg8 51. Nh6+ Kg7 52. Rb6 Qe4 53. Kh2 Kh7 54. Rd6 Qe5 55. Nf7 Qxb2+ 56. Kh3 Qg7 0-1 

An impressive game from the 40-year-old World Champion Anand who said the match was the toughest of his life. He expected to draw the last game with black and was mentally prepared to go into the quick tie-break games. Anand won 1.2 million Euros (A$1.71m),Topalov 0.8 million Euros (A$1.14m).

Anand from Chennai (Madras) learned to play at the age of six and won the Championship of India at sixteen and the World Junior (U20) Title in 1987. Anand rapidly rose to the summit of World Chess with his fast play always being well ahead on time in all games. He lost his first world title match to Kasparov in New York in 1995. Topalov won the title in 2005 but lost it to Kramnik in 2006.

 Anand won the title (round robin tournament) in Sep 2007 and beat challengers Kramnik in 2008 and Topalov in 2010. Anand is the first World Champion to retain his title  after losing the first game since Steinitz in 1892. Anand will defend his title in late 2011 against the winner of the eight player Candidates Matches which are scheduled to start on 1 March 2011 in Baku, Azerbaijan. 19-year-old Magnus Carlsen of Norway currently rated no 1 on the latest world rating list is widely tipped to be Anand's next challenger.

Match draws to a close

Peter Parr (12/5/10)

 Anand should have won the marathon ninth game but after several inferior moves in time trouble the game was drawn in 83 moves.

Topalov had the advantage in the very tense tenth and eleventh games but Anand played actively to draw both games.

 The 12 game world title match in Sofia, Bulgaria between title-holder Viswanathan Anand of India and Veselin Topalov of Bulgaria stands at 5.5-5.5 with Topalov playing white in the final game. Quick play-off games on Thursday evening will decide the title if game 12 is also drawn.

 V.Topalov (2805) v V.Anand (2787) Game 10 D86 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 d5 4. cxd5 Nxd5 5. e4 Nxc3 6. bxc3 Bg7 7. Bc4 c5 8. Ne2 Nc6 9. Be3 O-O 10. O-O (up to here all moves were played instantly by both players) 10...b6!?

(More usual here is Na5, Bg4 or Qc7 but there appears to be nothing wrong with the text) 11. Qd2 (Topalov played this quickly but more critical is 11.dxc5!?)

11..Bb7 12. Rac1 Rc8 13. Rfd1 cxd4 14. cxd4 Qd6 15. d5 (15.e5!?) 15...Na5 16. Bb5 Rxc1 17. Rxc1 Rc8 (Probably better here was to immediately attack the centre with 17...e6!?) 18. h3 (18.Rxc8+ Bxc8 19.Nd4!?) 18...Rxc1+ 19. Qxc1 e6 20. Nf4 exd5 21. Nxd5 f5! 22. f3 fxe4 23. fxe4 Qe5 24. Bd3 Nc6 (Here the simple 24...Bxd5 25.exd5 and now both 25...Bf8!? or 25...Qxd5 should be fine for black) 25. Ba6 Nd4 (Preferable was 25...Bxa6 26.Qxc6 Qa1+ 27.Kh2 Be5+ 28.Bf4 Bxf4+ 29.Nxf4 Qe5, after 25...Nd4 black is worse) 26. Qc4 Bxd5 27. Qxd5+ Qxd5 28. exd5 Be5 29. Kf2 Kf7 30. Bg5 Nf5 31. g4 Nd6 32. Kf3 Ne8 33. Bc1 Nc7 34. Bd3 Bd6 35. Ke4 b5 36. Kd4 a6 37. Be2 Ke7 38. Bg5+ Kd7 39. Bd2 Bg3 40. g5 Bf2+ 41. Ke5 Bg3+ 42. Ke4 Ne8 43. Bg4+ Ke7 44. Be6 Nd6+ 45. Kf3 Nc4!

(White has the bishop pair and a passed pawn but black has defended well and there is no way for white to make further progress) 46. Bc1 Bd6 47. Ke4 a5 48. Bg4 Ba3 49. Bxa3+ Nxa3 50. Ke5 Nc4+ 51. Kd4 Kd6 52. Be2 Na3 53. h4 Nc2+ 54. Kc3 Nb4 55. Bxb5 Nxa2+ 56. Kb3 Nb4 57. Be2 Nxd5 58. h5 Nf4 59. hxg6 hxg6 60. Bc4 1/2-1/2

 V.Anand (2787) v V.Topalov (2805) Game 11 A29 1. c4 (The English opening, in all other white games Anand had played 1.d4) 1...e5 2. Nc3 Nf6 3. Nf3 Nc6 4. g3 d5 5. cxd5 Nxd5 6. Bg2 Nb6 7. O-O Be7 8. a3 O-O 9. b4 Be6 10. d3 f6 11. Ne4 (More usual here is 11.Rb1) 11...Qe8

(11...Qd7 with the idea of Bh3 and f5 is also good) 12. Nc5 Bxc5 13. bxc5 Nd5 14. Bb2 Rd8 15. Qc2 Nde7 16. Rab1 Ba2 17. Rbc1 Qf7 18. Bc3 Rd7 19. Qb2 Rb8 20. Rfd1 Be6 21. Rd2 h6 22. Qb1 Nd5 23. Rb2 b6 24. cxb6 cxb6 25. Bd2 Rd6 26. Rbc2 Qd7 27. h4 Rd8 28. Qb5 Nde7 29. Qb2 Bd5 30. Bb4 Nxb4 31. axb4 Rc6 32. b5 (Fixing black's queenside pawns and leaving the pawn on a7 vulnerable)

32...Rxc2 33. Rxc2 Be6 34. d4 e4 35. Nd2 Qxd4 36. Nxe4 Qxb2 37. Rxb2 Kf7 38. e3 g5 39. hxg5 hxg5 40. f4 gxf4 41. exf4 Rd4 42. Kf2 Nf5 43. Bf3 Bd5 44. Nd2 Bxf3 45. Nxf3 Ra4 46. g4 (This weakens the kingside, 46.Rd2!? was a safer plan) 46...Nd6 47. Kg3 Ne4+ 48. Kh4 Nd6 49. Rd2?!

(This move is risky giving up a pawn, much safer was 49.Kg3)

49...Nxb5 50. f5 Re4 51. Kh5 Re3 52. Nh4 Nc3 53. Rd7+ Re7 54. Rd3 Ne4 55. Ng6 Nc5 56. Ra3 Rd7 57. Re3 Kg7 58. g5 b5 59. Nf4 b4 60. g6! (A good move which holds the draw) 60..b3 61. Rc3! Rd4 (If 61...b2 62.Rxc5! b1(Q) 63.Ne6+ and mates!) 62. Rxc5 Rxf4 63. Rc7+ Kg8 64. Rb7 Rf3 65. Rb8+ Kg7 1/2-1/2

Anand 5 Topalov 5

Peter Parr (10/5/10)

 The score in the World Championship Match in Sofia,Bulgaria between Champion Viswanathan Anand and Challenger Veselin Topalov stands at 5-5(two wins each and six draws) with two games left to play. Anand missed several wins in game nine and Topalov was better in game ten but both of these lengthy hard fought games resulted in draws. Rapidplay (and lightning games if necessary) will decide the title on Thursday evening if the final score is 6-6 in the twelve game match.

 Game 9 - V.Anand(IND 2787) v V.Topalov (BUL 2805) E53 Nimzo-Indian Opening 1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 e6 3 Nc3 Bb4 4 e3 0-0 5 Bd3 c5 6 Nf3 d5 7 0-0 cxd4 8 exd4 dxc4 9 Bxc4 b6 10 Bg5 Bb7 11 Re1 Nbd7 12 Rc1 Rc8 13 Bd3 Re8 14 Qe2 Bxc3 15 bxc3 Qc7 16 Bh4 Nh5 17 Ng5 g6 18 Nh3 (A new move) e5 19 f3 Qd6 20 Bf2 exd4? (white is better) 21 Qxe8+ Rxe8 22 Rxe8+ Nf8 23 cxd4 Nf6 24 Ree1 Ne6 25 Bc4! Bd5 26 Bg3 Qb4 27 Be5 Nd7 28 a3 Qa4 29 Bxd5 Nxe5 30 Bxe6 Qxd4+ 31 Kh1 (white is winning) fxe6 32 Ng5 Qd6 33 Ne4?(Rc8+!) Qxa3 34 Rc3 Qb2 35 h4 b5 36 Rc8+ Kg7 37 Rc7+ Kf8 38 Ng5 Ke8 39 Rxh7 Qc3 40 Rh8+?(better was 40 Re2) Kd7 41 Rh7+ Kc6 42 Re4 b4 43 Nxe6 Kb6 44 Nf4 Qa1+? (44...Qc1+) 45 Kh2 a5 46 h5 gxh5? 47 Rxh5 Nc6 48 Nd5+ Kb7 49 Rh7+ Ka6 50 Re6 Kb5 51 Rh5 Nd4 52 Nb6+! Ka6 53 Rd6 Kb7 54 Nc4? (Nd5!) Nxf3+! 55 gxf3 Qa2+ 56 Nd2 Kc7 57 Rhd5 b3 58 Rd7+ Kc8 59 Rd8+ Kc7 60 R8d7+ Kc8 61 Rg7 a4 62 Rc5+ (62 Rdd7!) Kb8 63 Rd5 Kc8 64 Kg3 Qa1 65 Rg4 b2 66 Rc4+ Kb7 67 Kf2 b1Q 68 Nxb1 Qxb1 69 Rdd4 Qa2+ 70 Kg3 a3 71 Rc3 Qa1 72 Rb4+ Ka6 73 Ra4+ Kb5 74 Rcxa3 Qg1+ 75 Kf4 Qc1+ 76 Kf5 Qc5+ 77 Ke4 Qc2+ 78 Ke3 Qc1+ 79 Kf2 Qd2+ 80 Kg3 Qe1+ 81 Kf4 Qc1+ 82 Kg3 Qg1+ 83 Kf4  0.5-0.5.(white can make no progress).

 Florencio Campomanes,President of the World Chess Federation(FIDE) from 1982-1995 passed away last Monday from cancer at the age of 83 in Baguio City,Philippines. Campo was a player of National Master level and represented the Philippines in five Olympiads 1956-1966. He visited Australia a number of times over a 45-year period after competing in the 1958/9 Australian Championship in Sydney. He organised the 1978 World Title Match in Baguio between Anatoly Karpov and Viktor Korchnoi. Campomanes visited well over 100 countries promoting chess and took a very active role in FIDE for over half-a-century and FIDE grew by over 50 new member nations during his tenure as President. He was a University Lecturer in Political Science 1954-1956 and a great orator. The 1992 Chess Olympiad in Manila was one of the best ever but Campo was in trouble from the Philippines Sports Commission for over ten years for failure to account for AUS $265,000. Campomanes was cleared of these charges by the Philippines Supreme Court in Dec 2006.

 The FIDE Womens Grand Prix tournament in Nalchik,Russia was won by Tatiana Kosintseva(RUS 2524) scoring 9/11. Yifan Hou(CHN 2570) was second with 7.5 points.

The World's oldest Grandmaster Andor Lilienthal has died at the age of 99. He was born in Moscow but spent most of his long life in Hungary. He defeated World Champions Lasker,Capablanca,Alekhine,Euwe,Botvinnik and Smyslov. Lilienthal's brilliant victory involving a queen sacrifice against Capablanca in 1935 will never be forgotten.

 IM Stephen Solomon won the 46 player Peninsular Open ACF Grand Prix weekender in Brisbane scoring 7/7. FM Gene Nakauchi was second on 5.5 The Norths Club Championship in Sydney attracted 78 players in 7 ratings divisions. Leading final scores in the 12 player World Rated Title event - FM Dr V.Smirnov (2392),G.Charles(2175),M.Morris(2016) 8,A.Chek(2095) 7.5,WIM B.Dekic(2091),B.Atzmon-Simon(2182) 6

Topalov Equalises

Peter Parr (7/5/10)

 The score in the World Championship Match in Sofia, Bulgaria is 4-4 after the challenger Veselin Topalov (Bulgaria) beat the defending title-holder Viswanathan Anand (India) in the eighth game in an opposite coloured bishop endgame.

 Game 8 - V.Topalov 2805 v V.Anand 2787 D17

 1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. Nc3 dxc4 5. a4 Bf5 6. Ne5 e6 7. f3 (Topalov played this variation in games 3 and 5)

7...c5 8. e4 Bg6 9. Be3 cxd4 10. Qxd4 Qxd4 (Once again Anand exchanges queens, in the previous two encounters he held the draw) 11. Bxd4 Nfd7 12. Nxd7 Nxd7 13. Bxc4 Rc8 (previously in games 3 and 5 Anand played 13..a6) 14. Bb5 a6 15. Bxd7+ Kxd7 16. Ke2 f6 17. Rhd1 Ke8 18. a5 (N) (up to now all the moves have been played before, Topalov's 18th is a novelty)

18..Be7 19. Bb6 Rf8

(The idea of this odd looking move is to play f5 to free up black's game) 20. Rac1 f5 21. e5 Bg5 22. Be3 f4?!

(After 22...Bxe3 23.Kxe3 f4+ followed by 24...Ke7 black should be fine) 23. Ne4! (Simple and strong, it would appear Anand overlooked this move)

23...Rxc1 24. Nd6+

(This is the "intermezzo" move that Anand must have missed on move 22)

24..Kd7 25. Bxc1

(All forced, white has achieved a powerful out-post for his Knight on d6, white stands better now)

25...Kc6 26. Bd2 Be7 27. Rc1+ Kd7 28. Bc3 Bxd6 29. Rd1 Bf5 30. h4!? (30.Rxd6+ is also good) 30...g6?!

(Better was 30...Kc7, the move played creates weaknesses in black's position, after 30...Kc7 31. exd6+ [31.Rxd6 Rd8=] 32...Kd7 33.Be5 (33.Bxg7 Rg8!) 33...Rc8! and black's active rook should save the day despite being a pawn down) 31. Rxd6+ Kc8 32. Bd2 Rd8 33. Bxf4 Rxd6 34. exd6 Kd7 (Despite the presence of opposite colour bishops black's position is still difficult, black is passive and must wait and see what white will do) 35. Ke3 Bc2 36. Kd4 Ke8 37. Ke5 Kf7 38. Be3 Ba4 39. Kf4 Bb5 40. Bc5 (40.Kg5!?) 40...Kf6 41. Bd4+ Kf7 42. Kg5 Bc6 43. Kh6 Kg8 44. h5 Be8 45. Kg5 Kf7 46. Kh6 Kg8 47. Bc5 gxh5 48. Kg5 Kg7 49. Bd4+ Kf7 50. Be5 h4 51. Kxh4 Kg6 52. Kg4 Bb5 53. Kf4 Kf7 54. Kg5 Bc6??

(up to here black has defended well but this move throws away the draw, the point is the bishop needs to protect the pawn on h7 so needs to be able to get to d3 or c2) 55. Kh6!

(Now black is forced to protect his h-pawn with his King) 55...Kg8 56. g4 1-0 Black is helpless, his king must protect h7 and his bishop must keep the pawn from advancing to d7, a possible line might be.. 56... Bb5 57. g5 Be8 58. f4 Bc6 59. Bg7! Be8 60. b3 Bc6 61. g6 hxg6 62. Kxg6 etc.

 If the match results in a 6-6 tie after the regular twelve games the match will be decided by tie-break games on Thursday 13 May. A four game tie-break match (25 minutes each plus 10 seconds after each move) shall be played. If the scores are still level 2 games at 5 mins each plus 3 secs a move. This will be repeated to a maximum of 10 games followed if necessary by one sudden-death game.  

Anand 4 Topalov 3

Peter Parr (5/5/10)

 Veselin Topalov of Bulgaria the World Title Challenger drew the sixth and seventh games with the black pieces against Viswanathan Anand of India, the defending champion in Sofia, Bulgaria. Anand leads 4-3 with 5 games to play.

 Game 6 - V.Anand 2787 v V.Topalov 2805  E04

 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 d5 4. g3 dxc4 5. Bg2 a6 6. Ne5 c5 7. Na3 cxd4 8. Naxc4 Bc5 9. O-O O-O 10. Bg5 (Anand played 10.Bd2 in game 2 of the match)

10...h6 11. Bxf6 Qxf6 12. Nd3 Ba7 13. Qa4 Nc6 14. Rac1 e5 15. Bxc6 b5 16. Qc2 Qxc6 17. Ncxe5 Qe4 18. Qc6 Bb7 19. Qxe4 Bxe4 20. Rc2 Rfe8 (Topalov has two bishops for two knights. This would be a strong advantage if a few more pawns were exchanged but in this more blocked position the knights are slightly better) 21. Rfc1 f6 22. Nd7 (The first of 13 consecutive knight moves!)

22...Bf5 23. N7c5 Bb6 24. Nb7 Bd7 25. Nf4 Rab8 26. Nd6 Re5 27. Nc8 Ba5 28. Nd3 Re8 29. Na7 Bb6 30. Nc6 Rb7 (If 30... Bxc6 31. Rxc6 Rxe2 32.Kf1! Rd2 (32... Ree8 33. Rd6) 33. Rc8+ Rxc8 34. Rxc8+ Kf7 35. Rc6 and white regains his pawn, note 35..Rxd3? here is answered by 36. Ke2! and the rook is trapped!) 31. Ncb4 a5 32. Nd5 a4 33. Nxb6 Rxb6 34. Nc5 Bf5 35. Rd2 Rc6 36. b4 axb3 37. axb3 b4 38. Rxd4 Rxe2 39. Rxb4 Bh3!

(White is a whole pawn up but black's threats to white's king is sufficient to keep the balance) 40. Rbc4 Rd6 41. Re4 Rb2 42. Ree1 (42.Rh4!? would force a draw  eg. 42...Rc2 43.Ra1 Ra2 etc)

42...Rdd2 43. Ne4 Rd4 44. Nc5 Rdd2 45. Ne4 Rd3 46. Rb1 Rdxb3 47. Nd2 Rb4 48. f3 g5 49. Rxb2 Rxb2 50. Rd1 Kf7 51. Kf2 h5 52. Ke3 Rc2 53. Ra1 Kg6 54. Ra6 Bf5 55. Rd6 Rc3+ 56. Kf2 Rc2 57. Ke3 Rc3+ 58. Kf2 Rc2 1/2-1/2

 Game 7 - V.Anand 2787 v V.Topalov 2805 E11 

The Catalan Opening occurs for the fourth time when Anand has the first move.

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 d5 4. g3 Bb4+ 5. Bd2 Be7 (Topalov played 5...a5 in game 4 and 5...a6 in game 6) 6. Bg2 O-O 7. O-O c6 8. Bf4 dxc4 9. Ne5 b5 10. Nxc6 Nxc6 11. Bxc6 Bd7 12. Bxa8 Qxa8 13. f3 Nd5 14. Bd2 e5 15. e4 Bh3 16. exd5 Bxf1 17. Qxf1 exd4 18. a4 Qxd5 19. axb5 Qxb5 20. Rxa7 Re8 21. Kh1 (Times used so far Anand over 1 hour, Topalov 3 minutes! All home preparation by Topalov with his second GM Ivan Cheparinov (BUL) 21. Kg2 seems more logical for white)

21...Bf8 22. Rc7 d3 23. Bc3 Bd6 24. Ra7 h6 25. Nd2 Bb4! 26. Ra1!

(The best move, after 26.Ne4 Bxc3 27.bxc3 f5! Black has the advantage)

26...Bxc3 27. bxc3 Re2 28. Rd1 (Forced) 28...Qa4 (Also possible is 28...Qe5 29.Nxc4 Qxc3 30.Nd6 Qc2 31.Ne4 f5 32.Rc1 Rxh2+ [32..fxe4!? giving up the queen is very interesting but probably still equal!] 33.Kg1 Rg2+ with a draw) 29. Ne4 Qc2 30. Rc1 Rxh2+ 31. Kg1 Rg2+ 32. Qxg2 Qxc1+ 33. Qf1 Qe3+ 34. Qf2 Qc1+ 35. Qf1 Qe3+ 36. Kg2 f5 37. Nf2 Kh7 38. Qb1 Qe6 39. Qb5 g5 40. g4 fxg4 41. fxg4 Kg6 42. Qb7 (42.Qa4!?) 42...d2 (The draw now seems certain) 43. Qb1+ Kg7 44. Kf1 Qe7 45. Kg2 Qe6 46. Qd1 Qe3 47. Qf3 Qe6 48. Qb7+ Kg6 49. Qb1+ Kg7 50. Qd1 Qe3 51. Qc2 Qe2 52. Qa4 Kg8 53. Qd7 Kf8 54. Qd5 Kg7 55. Kg3 Qe3+ 56. Qf3 Qe5+ 57. Kg2 Qe6 58. Qd1 1/2-1/2 (Despite the extra piece white can make no progress)

 Topalov will have the white pieces in game 8.

Anand 3.5 v Topalov 2.5

Peter Parr (3/5/10)

 World Champion Viswanathan Anand (India) leads 3.5-2.5 against Challenger Veselin Topalov (Bulgaria) at the half-way stage of the World Championship Match in Sofia,Bulgaria. Topalov won game 1 but lost games 2 and 4.  Game 5 - V.Topalov 2805 v V.Anand 2787 D17 - A solid slav opening. 1 d4 d5 2 c4 c6 3 Nf3 Nf6 4 Nc3 dxc4 5 a4 Bf5 6 Ne5 e6 7 f3 c5 8 e4 Bg6 9 Be3 cxd4 10 Qxd4 Qxd4 11 Bxd4 Nfd7 12 Nxd7 Nxd7 13 Bxc4 a6 14 Rc1 Rg8 15 h4 h5 (an improvement on 15...h6 played in game 3) 16 Ne2 Bd6 17 Be3 (The clock was stopped for 13 minutes due to a power outage in Central Sofia)

  17...Ne5 18 Nf4 Rc8 19 Bb3 Rxc1+ 20 Bxc1 Ke7 21 Ke2 Rc8 22 Bd2 f6! (Both players agreed after the game that this was the equalizing move solving all black's problems which Topalov said he had not considered during the game) 23 Nxg6+ Nxg6 24 g3 Ne5 25 f4 Nc6 26 Bc3 Bb4 27 Bxb4+ Nxb4 28 Rd1 Nc6 29 Rd2 g5 30 Kf2! g4 31 Rc2 Rd8 32 Ke3 Rd6 33 Rc5 Nb4 34 Rc7+ Kd8 35 Rc3 Ke7 36 e5 Rd7 37 exf6+ Kxf6 38 Ke2 Nc6 39 Ke1 Nd4 40 Bd1 a5 41 Rc5 Nf5 42 Rc3 Nd4  0.5 - 0.5   Topalov gained a slight advantage in game six but the game was drawn in 58 moves. Games seven and eight are played on Monday and Tuesday evenings with a free day on Wednesday.

 Leading final scores in the Asian Continental Championship in Subic Bay,Philippines (89 players from 15 countries including 32 GM's competing for 5 places in the 2011 World Cup) 

GM Ni Hua (CHN 2667) 7,GM W.So (PHI 2665),GM A.Gupta(IND 2560),GM J.Zhou (CHN 2650),GM Q.Le (VIE 2689) 6.5   Australian Open Champion IM Aleks Wohl scored a disappointing 2.5 in the event.  FM Brian Jones (AUS 2072) won the 21 player Oceania Seniors Championship in Canterbury,New Zealand half a point ahead of William Lynn(NZL 1939).

 Top players on the May World Rating List - M.Carlsen NOR 2813,V.Topalov BUL 2812,V.Kramnik RUS 2790,V.Anand IND 2789,L.Aronian ARM 2783,S.Mamedyarov AZE 2763,A.Grischuk RUS 2760,Y.Wang CHN 2752,P.Eljanov UKR 2751.  Women - J.Polgar HUN 2682,H.Koneru IND 2622,Y.Hou CHN 2589. Leading Australians - GM Z.Zhao 2583 (World no 271),GM D.Smerdon 2531(World no 546),IM G.Xie 2482(World no 980),IM J.Gil 2444,IM S.Solomon 2434,GM D.Johansen 2420,IM A.Wohl 2412,IM I.Goldenberg 2386,IM G.Lane 2367,FM I.Bjelobrk 2349,FM T.Rej 2344,FM G.Canfell 2329.

 Women - WM A.Caoili 2243,IM I.Berezina 2239,T.Nguyen 2108,WM B.Dekic 2091, WM A.Jule 1970,WFM E.Guo 1954,S.Yu 1902. Country rank by average rating of the top ten players (139 countries) - Russia 2731 (201 GM,462 IM,1942 titled),Ukraine 2688,China 2648,India 2643,Israel 2640,France 2638,Azerbaijan 2638,Hungary 2637. Australia 2441 is ranked 56th (4 GM,18 IM,81 titled)

 World Under-12 Champion Bobby Cheng(VIC) and Grandmaster David Smerdon(ACT) tied for first place scoring 6/7 in the 45 player Anzac Day weekender in Melbourne.

The NSW Junior League's main primary and secondary schools teams competitions for 2010 have commenced. The primary schools competition is being held in 37 zones across the state with 925 teams from 353 schools. There has been significant growth in secondary schools with 290 teams from 93 schools participating in the metropolitan competition.

  A separate country districts secondary schools competition started last term with 133 schools. Matches are held weekly in second and third terms with finals continuing into fourth term. As each team consists of four players a total of nearly 5500 school students are competing each week. However, with the substitution of reserves during the season it is expected that approximately 8000 players will take part before the competitions have finished.

Anand takes the lead

Peter Parr (30/4/10)

 World Champion Viswanathan Anand has taken the lead for the first time by winning the fourth game of the World Championship Match against Veselin Topalov in Sofia, Bulgaria.

Anand lost the first game but recovered to win the second game.

Topalov gained a spatial advantage in the third game but Anand defended well to reach a drawn rook and pawn end-game.

 Game 3  V.Topalov 2805 v V.Anand 2787  D17  Anand played a solid Slav Defence instead of the sharp Gruenfeld in the first game. 1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. Nc3 dxc4 5. a4 Bf5 6. Ne5 e6 7. f3 c5 8. e4 Bg6 9. Be3 cxd4 10. Qxd4 Qxd4 11. Bxd4 Nfd7 12. Nxd7 Nxd7 13. Bxc4 a6 14. Rc1 Rg8! (a novelty) 15. h4 h6 16. Ke2 Bd6 17. h5 Bh7 18. a5 (The advantage for white is minimal with all the opposing pawns on the same files) 18...Ke7 19. Na4 f6 20. b4 Rgc8 21. Bc5 Bxc5 22. bxc5 Rc7 23. Nb6 Rd8 24. Nxd7 Rdxd7 25. Bd3 Bg8 (Safe but Kasparov in Oslo suggested 25...f5) 26. c6 Rd6 27. cxb7 Rxb7 28. Rc3 Bf7 29. Ke3 Be8 30. g4 e5 31. Rhc1 Bd7 32. Rc5 Bb5! 33. Bxb5 axb5 34. Rb1 b4 35. Rb3 Ra6 36. Kd3 Rba7 37. Rxb4 Rxa5 38. Rxa5 Rxa5 (The players should now agree to a draw. Topalov's manager announced before the match that Topalov will not offer or accept draws so the players now repeated moves and agreed to a draw via the arbiter.) 39. Rb7+ Kf8 40. Ke2 Ra2+ 41. Ke3 Ra3+ 42. Kf2 Ra2+ 43. Ke3 Ra3+ 44. Kf2 Ra2+ 45. Ke3 Ra3+ 46.Kf2  1/2-1/2

 Game 4 V.Anand 2787 v V.Topalov 2805  E04 Anand played a novelty on the tenth move in the Catalan Opening and maintained the initiative with forceful play. There was no defence after Anand's 23rd move.

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 d5 4. g3 dxc4 5. Bg2 Bb4+ 6. Bd2 a5 7. Qc2 Bxd2+ 8.

Qxd2 c6 9. a4 b5 10. Na3!

(Excellent preparation by Anand, 10.axb5 is the usual move here as in Kramnik-Topalov 2006 Elista World Championship)

10...Bd7 11. Ne5 Nd5 12. e4 Nb4 13. O-O O-O 14. Rfd1 Be8 15. d5! (Another strong move)

15...Qd6 16. Ng4 Qc5 17. Ne3 N8a6 (Perhaps 17...Nd3 is better) 18. dxc6 bxa4 19. Naxc4 Bxc6 20. Rac1 h6?!

(The position is difficult for black but this move weakens the kingside. 20...Qe7 seems more logical) 21. Nd6 Qa7? (21...Qg5 appears to be stronger but black is still struggling to avoid defeat) 22. Ng4!

(Anand played this move immediately taking advantage of black's 20th move) 22...Rad8?

(This move loses by force. The only move was 22...f6 but white is clearly very much better) 23. Nxh6+!!

(Played in a few seconds. Anand had calculated that this combination wins in all variations)

23...gxh6 24. Qxh6 f6 25. e5! (There is no defense against the multiple threats)

25...Bxg2 26. exf6 Rxd6 27. Rxd6 Be4 28. Rxe6 Nd3 29. Rc2! Qh7 30. f7+ Qxf7 31. Rxe4 Qf5 32. Re7 1-0

 Topalov resigned as he cannot avoid being checkmated.

 The score stands at Anand 2.5 Topalov 1.5 with eight games to play.

Every move in game one was opening preparation by Topalov and he won easily. Topalov has scored only 0.5 out of 3 since then but will play with the white pieces in game 5.

The fifth and sixth games will be played on Friday and Saturday evenings with a rest day on Sunday at the half-way stage of the match.

Anand Strikes Back

Peter Parr (28/4/10)

 World Champion Viswanathan Anand (India) defeated challenger Veselin Topalov (Bulgaria) in the second game of their world title match in Sofia, Bulgaria.

 Topalov won the first game with a spectacular piece sacrifice when Anand made a serious mistake on his 23rd move after a theoretically sharp variation of the Gruenfeld opening.

 Anand sacrificed a pawn in the second game and gradually improved his position. Anand is usually well ahead on the clock but in this game he had only 19 minutes left for 11 moves (time control at move 40) compared to 38 minutes of Topalov. "I am happy with my play and I thought I played fairly accurately" Anand said after the game.

 Game 2 E04

V.Anand (2787) v V.Topalov (2805)

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 d5

(Topalov also played this move at Linares, Spain 2010.) 4. g3 (Anand employs a quiet Catalan Opening)

4..dxc4 5. Bg2 a6

(Threatening to retain the extra pawn.)

6. Ne5 c5 7. Na3 cxd4 8. Naxc4 Bc5

(8...Ra7 is an alternative variation)

9. O-O O-O 10. Bd2 Nd5 11. Rc1 Nd7 12. Nd3 Ba7 13. Ba5

(13.Qb3 is also possible)

13...Qe7 14. Qb3 Rb8 15. Qa3

(Anand thought for a long time before playing this move shattering his queenside pawn structure for active play. 15.Red1 or 15.Rfe1 or 15.Rc2 were safer)

15...Qxa3 16. bxa3 N7f6?

(Probably better was 16...Nc5 when black is OK) 17. Nce5! Re8 18. Rc2 b6 19. Bd2 Bb7 20. Rfc1 Rbd8 21. f4 Bb8 22. a4 a5 23. Nc6 Bxc6 24. Rxc6 h5 25. R1c4 Ne3?

(Topalov has a passive position and finding a plan is difficult. 25...Ng4 maybe stronger) 26. Bxe3 dxe3 27. Bf3

(27.Rxb6 is also good)

27...g6 28. Rxb6 Ba7 29. Rb3 Rd4 30. Rc7 Bb8 31. Rc5!

(Black is now losing, the rest of the game is a matter of technique)

31...Bd6 32. Rxa5 Rc8 33. Kg2 Rc2 34. a3 Ra2 35. Nb4 Bxb4 36. axb4 (The doubled backward pawn wins the game!)

36...Nd5 37. b5 Raxa4 38. Rxa4 Rxa4 39. Bxd5 exd5 40. b6 Ra8 41. b7 Rb8 42. Kf3 d4 43. Ke4 1-0 Black loses his two central pawns and resigned.

 The score stands at Anand 1 Topalov 1 with 10 games left to play.

 The world title match is being played at the Military Club in Sofia. The Prime Minister of the Republic of Bulgaria Boiko Borisov is chairman of the organising committee.

He attended the opening ceremony with the President of the Russian Republic of Kalmykia Kirsan Illyumzhinov (also President of the World Chess Federation).

The Indian Ambassador also made a speech to the 20 television crews and about 100 journalists.

 There is a free day after every two games.

Topalov Wins First Game

Peter Parr (26/4/10)

 The former World Champion and current World Title Challenger Veselin Topalov (Bulgaria) decisively won the first game against the defending World Champion Viswanathan Anand(India) in their twelve game World Championship match in Sofia,Bulgaria. The opening 18 moves was highly theoretical with equal chances but Anand's 23rd move was an error allowing a winning piece sacrifice by Topalov.

 V.Topalov 2805 v V.Anand 2787 D86 1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 g6 3 Nc3 (The Gruenfeld Defence) d5 4 cxd5 Nxd5 5 e4 Nxc3 6 bxc3 Bg7 7 Bc4 c5 8 Ne2 Nc6 6 Be3 0-0 10 0-0 (Rapidly played by both players) Na5 11 Bd3 b6 12 Qd2 e5 13 Bh6 cxd4 14 Bxg7 Kxg7 15 cxd4 exd4 16 Rac1 (Topalov previously played 16 f4 and drew in the first game of his 2009 match against Kamsky in Sofia) 16 ... Qd6 ( A new move clearly analysed by both players - 16... Bb7 was Karjakin-Carlsen 2008) 17 f4 f6 18 f5 Qe5 (The players have each completed 18 moves very quickly.Topalov has to think for the first time). 19 Nf4 g5 (Anand's position appears secure) 20 Nh5+ Kg8 (Perhaps 20... Kh8 was better. ) 21 h4 h6 22 hxg5 hxg5 23 Rf3 Kf7?? ( A decisive error played after 25 minutes thought. The following piece sacrifice wins for white. 23... Bb7 is better but 23.. Bd7 is probably the best move when the piece sacrifice leads to a very unclear and complicated position) 24 Nxf6!! (Topalov spent only a few minutes on the winning move - maybe all home preparation)  Kxf6 25 Rh3 Rg8 26 Rh6+ Kf7 27 Rh7+ Ke8 28 Rcc7 Kd8 29 Bb5 Qxe4 30 Rxc8+! 1-0 Black's position is hopeless after 30...Kxc8 31 Qc1+ Nc6 32 Bxc6 Qe3+ 33 Qxe3 dxe3 34 Bxa8 white has an extra piece.

 Anand's preparations had been thrown into chaos when his flight from Frankfurt to Sofia was cancelled one hour before take-off due to the volcanic ash from Iceland. Anand requested a three-day postponement of the match due to 'force majeure' while waiting for a later flight from Frankfurt. The request was rejected. Anand was offered use of a private jet owned by his German Team Club Captain but German authorities would not authorize the flight.

 All trains were over-booked and Anand's wife and manager Aruna hired a large VIP Taxi-Van with their best two drivers. The trip was over 2000 km through 5 countries where World Champion Anand had a visa. The arduous journey over some poor highways in pouring rain took over 40 hours. Anand was finally allowed a one-day postponement. Topalov's manager IM Silvio Danailov strongly objected to any postponement.

 Anand will be white in the second game. There is a free day every third day throughout the match. The legendary Bobby Fischer started his match 0-2 against Boris Spassky in the Match of the Century in Iceland 1972 and recovered to win the match decisively. Anand is a great World Champion and exciting attacking play from both players will see a very interesting match. The SMH will publish extra chess columns to cover the World Title Match.

 Thailand Open (Bangkok)- Leading final scores (108 players from 29 countries including 7 Australians, 9 rounds) GM S.Hansen (DEN 2556) 8, GM N.Short (ENG 2686) 7.5, IM M.Sunil (IND 2403) 7. Australians - FM T.Reilly (2281), IM G.West (2357) and M.Drummund (2244) 5, P.Frost (1973) 4.5, J.Attwood (2034) 4, S.Watharow (1988) 3, J.Watson (1571) 2.5

 Leading scores in the Asian Continental Championship(89 players from 15 countries including 32 grandmasters) in Subic Bay, Philippines after round 4 - GM S.Megaranto(INA 2527),GM Y.Yu(CHN 2574),GM W.So(PHI 2665) 3.5/4.  IM Aleks Wohl the Australian Open Champion has scored 0.5/4. Peter Fraemohs(NZL 1964) leads the 21-player Oceania Seniors Championship with 3/3 in Canterbury,New Zealand.

World Title Match

Peter Parr (19/04/10)

The twelve game World Championship Match between the defending champion Viswanathan Anand (India) and the challenger Veselin Topalov (Bulgaria) starts on Friday in Sofia,Bulgaria. Rapid games will decide the title in the event of a 6-6 tie. The winner receives 1.2 million Euros(1.74 million $ AUS),the loser 0.8 million Euros (1.16 million $ AUS).

 The split of the chess world ended in 2006 when Classical World Champion Vladimir Kramnik (RUS) defeated FIDE World Champion Veselin Topalov 6-6(tie break 2.5-1.5) in Elista,Russia. Anand beat Kramnik in October 2008 by 6.5-4.5 in Bonn,Germany. Anand (2787) from Chennai(Madras) is aged 40 and Topalov (2805) from Sofia is 35. Topalov leads 22.5 - 21.5 (11 wins,10 losses and 23 draws) against Anand from their 44 life-time classical encounters. The players have both arrived in Sofia and I would tip Topalov as slight favorite in a close match. Nineteen-year-old Magnus Carlsen (NOR),now rated World no 1 needs to win the 2011 Candidates to qualify for the next World Title Match.

 Australian Open Champion IM Aleks Wohl scored 4.5/9 in the Kuala Lumpur Championship in Malaysia(111 players from 21 countries,58 titled including 12 GM's). Sixteen-year-old schoolgirl GM Hou Yifan (CHN 2570) won the event scoring 7.5/9.  Sydney players IM Vladimir Feldman scored 5.5/9 and IM Irina Berezina 4/9 in the Dubai Open,UAE. There were 154 players from 32 countries including 36 GM's and 89 titled.   

GM Dejan Bojkov,the current Champion of Bulgaria, led the Sydney International Open at Parramatta Town Hall with 6/7 but lost to the Australian Champion GM Zong-Yuan Zhao in round eight. Zhao and GM Gawain Jones (ENG) each were undefeated scoring  4 draws against 4 grandmasters and 5 other wins to tie for first place with Bojkov. IM George Xie needed to gain 10 rating points for his Grandmaster title but lost 8 so he now needs 18 rating points to reach 2500. Nine-year-old Anton Smirnov of Sydney scored an excellent 4.5/9(rating performance 2161). 

M.Panchanathan 2543 v M.Illingworth 2289  B06  1. Nf3 g6 2. d4 Bg7 3. e4 d6 4. Nc3 a6 5. a4 b6 6. Bc4 e6 7. h4 h6 8. Ne2 Ne7 9. Be3 Nd7 10. Ng3 Bb7 11. Bd3 Nf6 12. c3 Qd7 13. Qe2 O-O 14. h5 Ng4 15. Bd2 e5 16. dxe5 dxe5 17. Bc4 g5 18. Nxg5 hxg5 19. Bxg5 Nh6 20. Rd1 Qe8 21. Nf5 Nexf5 22. exf5 Kh7 23. f6 Bh8 24. Rh4 e4 25. Rd5 Rd8 26. Rxe4 Bxd5 27. Bxd5 Qd7 28. Re5 Ng4 29. Qe4+ Kg8 30. Qg6+ 1-0

 Leading final scores (77 players from 12 countries with 29 titled including 10 grandmasters and 8 IM's,9 rounds) - GM D.Bojkov(BUL 2505,winner on countback),GM G.Jones(ENG 2556),GM Z.Zhao(AUS 2592) 7,GM V.Malaniuk(UKR 2582),GM A.Kunte(IND 2528),GM M.Panchanathan(IND 2543),FM D.Fernandez(SIN 2299,scored an IM norm) all 6.5,GM Li Chao(CHN 2613),IM R.Chowdhury(IND 2429),GM D.Smerdon(AUS 2530),GM D.Barua(IND 2479),IM G.Xie(AUS 2470),IM D.Sharma(IND 2361),IM S.Macak(SVK 2470),IM S.Solomon(AUS 2426),FM E.Teichmann(ENG 2325) all 6. The supporting event for players rated below 2000 was won by the Australian Under-14 Champion Alexander Stahnke(QLD 1918) scoring 8/9 with the Australian Under-12 Champion Andrew Pan(NSW 1948) in second place on 7.5 points in the 51 player event. 

Former NSW State Champion 91-year-old Lloyd Fell had a fall last week and was admitted to the orthopaedic ward of Bankstown hospital with a broken hip. Fell has been the most active Australian player ever after winning the City of Sydney title in 1944 - 66 years ago.  The Eastern Suburbs Leagues Club Autumn Challenge 9 round tournament in two divisions - open and under 1700 rated starts this evening.

Li Chao wins Doeberl Cup

Peter Parr (12/04/10)

 Twenty-year-old Li Chao of Beijing won the Doeberl Cup Easter Weekend Tournament in Canberra scoring 6 wins and 3 draws (two quick draws in his final two games)in the 9 round event. International Master George Xie of Sydney scored his third and final Grandmaster norm (2600+ result against a strong field) finishing outright second. Xie now only needs a rating of 2500+ for his grandmaster title. He goes up from 2470 to 2490 in this event but will lose rating points in the Sydney International now in progress. Tomek Rej of Sydney scored half a point above the IM norm and now needs only a 2400+ rating for his International Master Title. Moulthun Ly(QLD) also scored his final IM result but requires a 2400+ rating and Erich Teichmann(England) made an IM norm.

 Australian Champion GM Zong-Yuan Zhao (AUS 2592) v IM G.Xie (AUS 2470) 1. Nf3 Nf6 2. c4 b6 3. Nc3 Bb7 4. d4 e6 5. a3 d5 6. cxd5 Nxd5 7. Bd2 c5 8. e4 Nxc3 9. Bxc3 Bxe4 10. Ne5 a6 11. Qg4 Bf5 12. Qh5 Ra7 13. O-O-O g6 14. Qe2 Bh6+ 15. Bd2 cxd4 16. Bxh6 Rc7+ 17. Nc4 d3 18. Qe3 Rxc4+ 19. Kb1 Re4 20. Qd2 f6 21. Qc3 Re1 22. Rxe1 d2+ 23. Ka2 dxe1=Q 24. Qxe1 Qd5+ 25. b3 Kf7 26. Qd2 Qe4 27. Be2 Rc8 28. Bc4 b5 29. f3 Qb7 0-1 

Leading final scores (72 players, 9 rounds):- GM Li Chao (CHN 2613) 7.5: IM G.Xie (AUS 2470) 7, GM V.Malaniuk (URK 2582), GM M.Panchanthan (IND 2543), GM D.Smerdon (AUS 2530), IM R.Chowdhury (IND 2429) 6.5: GM D.Barua (IND 2479), GM D.Bojkov (BUL 2505), IM S.Solomon (AUS 2426), GM G.Jones (ENG 2556), FM T.Rej (AUS 2348), FM E.Teichmann (ENG 2325), M.Ly (AUS 2315) FM T.Boyd (AUS 2308) all 6.  Five players scored 5.5 including GM Z.Zhao (AUS 2592) and GM A.Kunte (IND 2528). 

Samuel Dalton (VIC 1925) won the 72 player Major supporting tournament for players rated 2000 and under scoring 6.5/7 half a point ahead of Angelito Camer(NSW). Michael Addamo (VIC 1378) won the 68 player Under 1600 rated Minor tournament scoring 7/7 and Joshua Walker(ACT) won the 38 player Mind Games Under 1200 rated division with 5.5/6  

Tim Diemer has won the NSW Junior League's Autumn One-Day Tournament,conceding only one draw in nine rounds. Austin Shen and NSW Girls Champion Caroline Shan scored 7.5/9. The league's Autumn Two-Day Tournament will be held on Wednesday and Thursday. For details see www.nswjcl.org.au or contact Richard Gastineau-Hills,phone 9412 4579.

Leading scores in the Sydney International Open at Parramatta Town Hall after eight rounds - (76 players,9 rounds) GM Z.Zhao(AUS 2592) and GM G.Jones(ENG 2556) 6.5, GM Li Chao(CHN 2613),GM D.Bojkov(BUL 2505),GM A.Kunte(IND 2528),GM D.Barua(IND 2479),FM D.Fernandez(SIN 2299) 6. Fifteen-year-old Daniel Fernandez scored an IM norm in this event last year and this year. The final round game between Zhao and Jones was agreed drawn in fifteen moves with the other games still in progress.The Australian Under-14 Champion Alexander Stahnke(QLD 1918) leads the 51 player supporting event with 7/8. 

Meanwhile overseas the Australian Open Champion IM Aleks Wohl(NSW) in Malaysia has scored 3.5/6 in the Kuala Lumpur Championship and  IM's Vladimir Feldman and Irina Berezina of Sydney have each scored 3.5/6 so far in the Dubai Open in the United Arab Emirates. The Russian Team Championships took place in Dagomys(10 teams,80 players including 65 grandmasters). The clear winners were ShSM-64 of Moscow - Gelfand(ISR 2750),Karjakin(RUS 2725),Wang Hao(CHN 2715),Caruana(ITA 2680 etc) with 16/18 match points.

Li Chao leads Doeberl Cup

Peter Parr (5/04/10)

 Twenty-year-old Grandmaster Li Chao of Beijing,China has taken the sole lead in the O2C Doeberl Cup Easter weekend tournament in Canberra conceding only half-a-point in the first six rounds. GM Dibyendu Barua was a pawn down in the endgame against Li Chao but white's advantage was not enough to win. Nine grandmasters are in the top thirteen places with three rounds to play.

 IM George Xie finished second in the Australian Championship in January scoring his second Grandmaster norm (2600 +) with 9/11 losing only to GM Zong-Yuan Zhao (the winner on 10/11!) and IM Stephen Solomon. Xie is once again performing at 2600 level. He defeated Zhao and drew with GM Malaniuk and IM Solomon. Xie needs to maintain this level for the next three games and his rating to be 2500+ to become Australia's fifth cross-board grandmaster. Erich Teichmann,Tomek Rej and Eugene Schon are well in the running for an IM norm(2450+ )

 Leading scores after round 6 (72 players, 9 rounds) - GM  B.Li Chao(CHN 2613) 5.5, GM D.Bojkov(BUL 2505),GM M.Panchanathan(IND 2543) 5,GM D.Barua(IND 2479),IM G.Xie(AUS 2470),GM V.Malaniuk(UKR 2582),IM S.Solomon(AUS 2426) all 4.5, FM T.Rej(AUS 2348),GM Z.Zhao(AUS 2592),IM R.Chowdhury(IND 2429)GM D.Smerdon(AUS 2530),GM A.Kunte (IND 2528),GM G.Jones(ENG 2556),FM E.Teichmann (ENG 2325)IM G.Lane(AUS 2380) 4

 The overall entry of 248 players in four rated divisions is a new record with 72 in the Premier,72 in the Major,68 in the Minor and 36 in the 1200 and under division.Doeberl Cup Lightning leading final scores(81 players, 9 rounds) - GM G.Jones (2526 loss to Barua) 8, GM D.Barua (2479 loss to Ikeda in the last round) 7.5, FM V.Smirnov (2316) and J.Ikeda(2354,Australian Lightning Champion) 7 

The Sydney International Open ( 73 entries to date including 10 Grandmasters,8 International Masters) and Challengers (47 early entries) follows the Doeberl Cup with the same 10 GM's and will be held at Parramatta Town Hall 7-11 April. Nine rounds will be held in each event over five days.  

Vassily Smyslov (World Champion 1957/8)  died last week in Moscow 3 days after his 89th birthday. He was one of the great chess geniuses of the 20th Century. He is ranked 6th in chess history (1950-1969) based on results over a 20 year period behind Kasparov (1984-2003) ,Karpov(1997-1996) ,Lasker(1892-1911) ,Alekhine and Korchnoi and above World Champions Petrosian,Botvinnik,Spassky,Tal,Anand and Euwe. Smyslov shared first place in the Moscow Championship at the age of 17  and retired at the age of 80 due to failing eyesight. Here are two of Smyslov's best games  

England - Hastings Premier 1968  V.Smyslov v M.Fuller (Australia) 1. Nf3 g6 2. d4 Nf6 3. c4 Bg7 4. Nc3 O-O 5. Bg5 h6 6. Bh4 d6 7. e3 Nbd7 8. Be2 e5 9. dxe5 dxe5 10. O-O c6 11. b4 a5 12. a3 axb4 13. axb4 Rxa1 14. Qxa1 g5 15. Bg3 Nh5 16. Nd2 Nxg3 17. hxg3 Nb6 18. Rd1 Be6 19. Nce4 Qc7 20. Nc5 Ra8 21. Nxe6 Qe7 22. Qb1 Qxe6 23. c5 Nd5 24. Bc4 Qg4 25. Ne4 Nc7 26. Nf6+ ! Bxf6 27. Qg6+ Bg7 28. Qxf7+ Kh8 29. Rd7 1-0 

World Championship Match 1954 Game 9  Moscow  V.Smyslov v M.Botvinnik French Defnce C17  1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. e5 c5 5. a3 Ba5 6. b4 ( A well known pawn sacrifice - Alekhine 1924) cxd4 7. Qg4 Ne7 8. bxa5 dxc3 9. Qxg7 Rg8 10. Qxh7 Nd7 11. Nf3 Nf8 ? 12. Qd3 Qxa5 13. h4 Bd7 14. Bg5! Rc8 15. Nd4 ! Nf5 16. Rb1 Rc4? 17. Nxf5 exf5 18. Rxb7 Re4+ 19. Qxe4 !! A winning queen sacrifice) dxe4 20. Rb8+ Bc8 21. Bb5+ Qxb5 22. Rxb5 Ne6 23. Bf6 Rxg2 24. h5 Ba6 25. h6 1-0 

Carlsen and Ivanchuk Tie

Peter Parr (29/03/10)

 Magnus Carlsen (World no 1)and Vassily Ivanchuk tied for first place in the Amber Blindfold and Rapid tournament in Nice,France. Each player scored 6.5/11 in the blindfold and 8/11 in the rapid.  Rapid - V.Kramnik 2790 v B.Gelfand 2750 E15 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 b6 4. g3 Ba6 5. b3 Bb4+ 6. Bd2 Be7 7. Bg2 c6 8. Bc3 d5 9. Nbd2 Nbd7 10. Qc2 c5 11. dxc5 bxc5 12. O-O O-O 13. Bb2 Qb6 14. Rfe1 Bb7 15. cxd5 exd5 16. Rad1 Rad8 17. Bh3 Qc6 18. Rc1 Ne4 19. Bg2 f5 20. b4 c4 21. a3 Bf6 22. Nd4 Qb6 23. N2f3 g5 24. e3 g4 25. Nd2 Ne5 26. Re2 Bg7 27. Rd1 Rc8 28. Nf1 Nd3 29. Ba1 Qa6 30. Qa2 Qa4 31. Rc2 Ndxf2 32. Bxe4 fxe4 33. Ne6 Nxd1 34. Bxg7 Rxf1+ ! 0-1.  Leading final scores (12 players, 2746 average rating, 22 rounds) M.Carlsen(NOR 2813 13+ 3= 6-),V.Ivanchuk(UKR 2748 7+ 15=) 14.5, V.Kramnik(RUS 2790) 13,A.Grischuk(RUS 2756) 12.5,S.Karjakin(UKR 2756) 12.

 Vassily Smyslov(World Champion 1957/8) died in Moscow on Saturday evening at the age of 89. Smyslov played three matches for the World Title against Mikhail Botvinnik. 12-12 in 1954,won 12.5-9.5 in 1957 and lost 10.5-12.5 in 1958.

 Gary McNamara has won the City of Sydney Championship at Burwood scoring five wins and two draws. Nine-year-old Anton Smirnov nearly became by far the youngest Sydney champion in history. Smirnov on 4.5/6 would have finished outright first if he had beaten McNamara in the final round but lost. Leading final scores (28 players, 7 rounds):- G.McNamara (1993) 6: J.Bolens (2029), G.Charles (2049), FM T.Rej (2325), K.Thapa (1977) 5. Leading scores after seven rounds of the Norths World Rated Club Championship - A.Chek(2095),G.Charles(2175),FM V.Smirnov(2392) all 5/7,M.Morris(2016)4.5. There are seven other supporting round robin tournaments.

 The Tenth Dubbo Open Grand Prix weekender resulted in  a tie for first place between Australian Champion Grandmaster Zong-Yuan Zhao(winner on countback) and International Master George Xie. They drew their individual game in round 5 and won their other 5 games in the 48 player event. Three players tied for third place on 4.5/6 - N.Dean-Cowell (1662), FM V.Smirnov (2316) and A.Chibnall (1513).Fritz Van Der Wal (Orange) on 4 points became the NSW Country Champion for the fourth time..

 Kevin Sheldrick has won the South Australian Championship in Adelaide with a round to space. He has scored 7.5/8 and is a full two points clear of the field with one game to play.

Sheldrick also won the title in 1999.

 The four divisions of the 48th annual Doeberl Cup Easter weekend tournament 1-5 April at the Hellenic Club, Wooden, Canberra has so far attracted 223 entrants.

There are 32 titled players (10 grandmasters, 11 international masters,1 WIM,8 FM,2 WFM). The top seeds in the 78 player premier division are GM Chao Li(CHN 2613 - age 20 from Beijing - 2767 rating performance in Russia-China Match in Ningbo Sep 2008), GM Z.Zhao (AUS 2592), GM V.Malaniuk (UKR 2582), GM G.Jones (ENG 2556), GM M.Panchanathan (IND 2543), GM D.Smerdon (AUS 2530), GM A.Kunte (IND 2528), GM D.Bojkov (BUL 2505). Grandmaster Ian Rogers of Sydney will be commentating on the games daily in an adjoining room at the venue.

 International Master George Xie (AUS 2470) of Sydney will need to perform at 2600+ to secure his third and final norm for a grandmaster title either in Canberra or in Sydney at the SIO.

The Sydney International Open (10 GM, 7 IM,2 FM,2 CM,1 WIM 1 WFM) and Challengers event follows the Doeberl Cup and is held at the historic Parramatta Town Hall (7-11 April) over 9 rounds.The top seeds are the same as at the Doeberl Cup. There are 65 early entries in the SIO and 36 in the Challengers (Under 2000). 31 of the 101 entries are from overseas,27 from interstate and 43 from NSW. 33 of the 101 entrants are juniors.

Nepomniachtchi Wins

Peter Parr (22/03/10)

 Russian Grandmaster nineteen-year-old Ian Nepomniachtchi(European Under-10 champion 10 years ago) has won the European Championship in Rijeka,Croatia scoring nine points from eleven games and a 2868 performance rating. 408 players from 41 countries including 187 grandmasters competed for 23 qualifying places in the World Cup. Baadur Jobava(GEO 2695) defeated Artyom Timofeev(RUS 2655) in the play-off match for second place after tying for second with 8.5/11. The website of the event was visited more than two million times.

 I.Nepomniachtchi 2656 v B.Jobava 2695  Rd 9 B12  1. e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. f3 Qb6 4. a4 e5 5. dxe5 dxe4 6. a5 Qc7 7. f4 Nh6 8. Nc3 Bb4 9. Bd2 e3 10. Bxe3 O-O 11. Nf3 Rd8 12. Bd3 Na6 13. Qe2 Bxa5 14. O-O Nb4 15. Be4 Bf5 16. Kh1 Bb6 17. Bxb6 Qxb6 18. Ng5 c5 19. Rae1 Qg6 20. Bxb7 Nxc2 21. Nd5 Rxd5 22. Bxd5 Bd3 23. Qf3 Re8 24. e6! Nxe1 25. Rxe1 fxe6 26. Rxe6 Kh8 27. h3! Rxe6 28. Bxe6 Bb5 29. f5 Qe8 30. f6 Qf8 31. f7 1-0

 I.Nepomniachtchi 2656 v H.Melkumyan 2582 Rd 6 C77  1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. d3 b5 6. Bb3 Be7 7. O-O d6 8. a4 b4 9. a5 O-O 10. Nbd2 Rb8 11. Nc4 h6 12. h3 Be6 13. Be3 Qc8 14. Nfd2 Rd8 15. Qe2 Qb7 16. Ba4 Nd7 17. c3 d5 18. exd5 Bxd5 19. f4 exf4 20. Bxf4 Re8 21. d4 Bg5 22. Qf2 Bxf4 23. Qxf4 Nf6 24. Ne3 Be6 25. Qf3 Bd7 26. Nd5 Re6 27. Ne4 Nxe4 28. Qxf7+ Kh8 29. Qxd7 Rd6 30. Bxc6 Rxc6 31. Qe7 Rd6 32. Rf8+ Rxf8 33. Qxf8+ Kh7 34. Ne7 Nf6 35. Rf1 1-0 

GM Pia Cramling(SWE 2523) won the European Womens Title with 9/11 half a point ahead of Viktorija Cmilyte(LTU 2485). The top 14 qualified for the next stage of the World Womens Championship.  The German Championship was won by 16th seed IM Niclas Huschenbeth(2404) scoring 7/9(performance 2677) in the 44 player event.

 Vassily Ivanchuk remains in the lead and undefeated after 14 games of the 19th Amber Blindfold and Rapid tournament in Nice,France. World no 1 Magnus Carlsen lost 0-2 to Ivanchuk in his first two games but recovered with seven consecutive wins. Leading scores(12 players,average 2746,22 rounds) V.Ivanchuk(UKR 2748) 10/14,M.Carlsen(NOR 2813) 9.5,B.Gelfand(ISR 2750),S.Karjakin(UKR 2725) 8.5,V.Kramnik(RUS 2790) 8. 

The seventh and final round of the City of Sydney Championship will be held on Wednesday evening at the Sydney Chess Centre,Burwood. The provisional pairings are Gary McNamara(1993) 5 v Anton Smirnov(1713) 4.5, Johny Bolens(2029) 4.5 v Gareth Charles(2049) 4.5,FM Tomek Rej(2325) 4 v Christopher Skulte(1776) 4.5.  Smirnov (born in 2001)is one of the World's strongest players under the age of ten and must win his last round game to finish first or equal first in this title event. There will be a play-off for the title if there is a tie for first.

 The 48th annual Doeberl Cup Easter Weekend Tournament  1-5 April will be held in the spacious and unique environment of the Hellenic Club,Woden,Canberra. The quality venue and o2c organisers led by Charles Bishop ensured a record entry last year of 237 players. There are 82 entries so far this year including nine Grandmasters and eleven International Masters in the main event,44 in the Major(under 2000),45 in the Minor(under 1600)and 18 in the Mind Games(Under 1200) rated events with a wide range of prizes for players of all standards. A new record entry is anticipated.  The top seeds rated above 2450 are - GM Z.Zhao(AUS 2592),GM V.Malaniuk(UKR 2582),GM G.Jones(ENG 2556),GM M.Panchanathan(IND 2543),GM D.Smerdon(AUS 2530),GM A.Kunte(IND 2528),GM D.Bojkov(BUL 2505),GM D.Barua(IND 2479),IM G.Xie(AUS 2470),IM S.Macak(SLO 2470),GM D.Johansen(AUS 2457).

Teichmann wins in Ballarat

Peter Parr  (15/03/10)

 FIDE Master Erik Teichmann won the 44th Ballarat Begonia Open Grand Prix Weekender in fine style. Teichmann won his first four games against lower rated players and in round five defeated the top seed IM Stephen Solomon followed by a draw against IM Leonid Sandler and a win over second seed IM Guy West in the last round. Leading final scores (123 players, 7 rounds) FM E.Teichmann(VIC 2283) 6.5,IM S.Solomon(QLD 2371),IM L.Sandler(VIC 2219),B.Cheng(VIC 2239,the World Under 12 Champion) 6. Teichmann leads the Yulgilbar-Think Big ACF Grand Prix after completion of 9 of the 50 events in 2010.

 The 22-player Tasmanian Championship in Hobart was won by seventeen-year-old Alastair Dyer who scored 5.5(4 wins and 3 draws) in the 7 round weekend event. Junta Ikeda ranked 7th on the March Australian Rating List raced away to lead the 32 player ACT Championship in Canberra with 5/5. Ikeda led with 7/8 but faltered in the last round losing to Allen Setiabudi. The title was won by Andrey Bliznyuk (1889) who was undefeated scoring 7.5/9 half a point above Ikeda.

¬†Gary McNamara took the sole lead in the fourth round of the City of Sydney Championship with 4/4 (28 players, 7 rounds) by outplaying second seed Gareth Charles. The top four games were hard fought draws in round 5. Progress scores after round 5:- G.McNamara(1993) 4.5,J.Bolens(2029),C.Skulte(1776) 4.¬† The first meeting of the new Harbord Diggers Chess Club,Evans St,Freshwater will be held tonight. The club formerly met at Manly-Warringah Rugby League Club for the last 25 years. The next ACF Grand Prix weekend event is the 10th Anniversary Dubbo RSL Open incorporating the 2010 NSW Country Championship. Australiaís strongest Grandmaster Zong-Yuan Zhao and International Master George Xie have entered the six round event to be held 20-21 March.

  The European Individual Open Championship is in progress in Rijeka, Croatia (408 players including 187 grandmasters competing for 22 qualifying places in the World Cup and AUS $225,000 prize-money). Leading scores after round 7 - Baadur Jobava (GEO 2695) and Zahar Efimenko(UKR 2640) 6.   Here are two games from the event - I.Cheparinov 2657 v J.Lopez Martinez 2548 C18 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. e5 c5 5. a3 Bxc3+ 6. bxc3 Nc6 7. Qg4 g6 8. Bd2 Bd7 9. Nf3 c4 10. h4 h6 11. Qf4 Nce7 12. a4 Qa5 13. Nh2 Bxa4 14. Ng4 Qb5 15. Nf6+ Nxf6 16. exf6 Nc6 17. Kd1 O-O-O 18. g3 b6 19. Bh3 Kb7 20. Re1 h5 21. Qf3 Bxc2+ 22. Kxc2 Qb3+ 23. Kc1 Nb4 0-1

 A.Volokitin 2687 v K.Maslak 2560 C43  1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. d4 Nxe4 4. Bd3 d5 5. Nxe5 Nd7 6. Nxd7 Bxd7 7. O-O Bd6 8. c4 c6 9. cxd5 cxd5 10. Nc3 Nxc3 11. bxc3 O-O 12. Qh5 g6 13. Qxd5 Qc7 14. c4 Be6 15. Qf3 Bxc4 16. Bh6 Rfc8 17. Rfc1 b5 18. a4 Qd8 19. axb5 Bxd3 20. Rxc8 Rxc8 21. Qxd3 Qd7 22. g3 Rb8 23. Rc1 Rxb5 24. Qxb5 1-0.  The European Womens Championship has 158 players including 33 rated above 2400 competing for AUS $112,500.  GM Monika Socko(POL 2465) leads with 6/7.

 The 19th Amber Blindfold and Rapid Tournament started on Saturday evening in Nice, France. Twelve players with an average rating of 2746 are competing over 22 rounds for a prize fund of AUS $324,000.  The top 3 seeds are nineteen-year-old Magnus Carlsen (NOR World No.1), Vladimir Kramnik (RUS World No.3 and a record six time winner) and Levon Aronian (ARM World No.5) winner of the last two Amber tournaments. Vassily Ivanchuk (UKR,winner in 1992) defeated Carlsen 2-0 in his first round match on Saturday evening. Ivanchuk,now aged 40, has competed in all 19 Amber tournaments. Former World Champion Ruslan Ponomariov also from Ukraine beat 2009 World Cup winner Boris Gelfand 2-0 to share the early lead with Ivanchuk.

European Titles in Croatia

Peter Parr (08/03/10)

The European Individual Open and Womens Championships are in progress in Rijeka, Croatia. 408 players(187 GM,75 IM,43 FM) from 40 countries are competing in the Open. There are only 108 players rated below 2300 with 183 above 2500 including 95 above 2600 and 9 above 2700. Grandmaster L.Ortega(ITA 2479) seeded 203 drew his first round game against top seed GM Z.Almasi(HUN 2720) in the first round. The Womens Championship has 158 players (33 above 2400) of whom 134 are titled from 32 countries.

Thirteen-year-old Richard Rapport of Hungary is the fifth youngest player in history to gain the grandmaster title. Rapport scored his final GM norm in Hungary finishing equal second with L.Portisch half a point behind A.Beliavsky(2657).

104 players including 22 grandmasters played in the Reykjavik Open in Iceland resulting in a four way tie for first place between I.Sokolov (BIH 2649), Y.Kuzubov (UKR 2634), A.Gupta (IND 2577), H.Stefansson (ISL 2574) all 7/9.  Here are two games from the event. Thirteen-year-old Nyzhnyk who scored his first 2600+ result at the age of 10 just missed the GM norm.

G.Gislason 2382 v I.Nyzhnyk 2495 D27 1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3 d5 3. c4 dxc4 4. e3 e6 5. Bxc4 c5 6. O-O a6 7. Bb3 Nc6 8. Nc3 cxd4 9. exd4 Be7 10. Bg5 O-O 11. Qd2 Na5 12. Bc2 g6 13. Ne5 b5 14. Bh6 Re8 15. Qf4 Bb7 16. Ne4 Nc4 17. Bg5 Bxe4 18. Bxe4 Nxe4 19. Qxf7+ Kh8 20. Bh6 Bf6 21. Nc6 Qc8 22. Na7 Rxa7 23. Qxa7 Re7! 0-1

A.Lenderman 2560 v M.Ivanov 2465 A13  1. c4 e6 2. g3 d5 3. Bg2 Nf6 4. Nf3 dxc4 5. Qa4+ Nbd7 6. Qxc4 a6 7. Qc2 c5 8. Nc3 Qc7 9. d4 b5 10. d5 exd5 11. Bf4 Qa5 12. O-O Bb7 13. Ne5 Nb6 14. a3 b4 15. axb4 Qxb4 16. Nd3 Qd4 17. e3 Qc4 18. b3 1-0

Top players on the March World Rating List  - M.Carlsen (NOR 2813), V.Topalov (BUL 2805), V.Kramnik (RUS 2790), V.Anand (IND 2787), L.Aronian (ARM 2782), S.Mamedyarov (AZE 2760), A.Grischuk (RUS 2756), P.Svidler (RUS 2750), G.Gelfand (ISR 2750), Y.Wang (CHN 2749).  Women - J.Polgar (HUN 2682), H.Koneru (IND 2622), Y.Hou (CHN 2570).

Leading Australians - GM Z.Zhao 2592 (World No.228), GM D.Smerdon 2530 (World No.553), IM G.Xie 2470 (World No.1102), GM D.Johansen 2457, IM A.Wohl 2441, IM S.Solomon 2426.

Women - IM I.Berezina 2239, WM A.Caoili 2235, T.Nguyen 2108, WM B.Dekic 2091, E.Guo 1941. Country rank by average rating of top 10 players (129 countries) Russia 2730 (198 GM, 463 IM, 1938 titled), Ukraine 2689, China 2645, France 2642, India 2641, Israel 2640.  Australia is 53rd at 2444 (4GM, 17 IM, 78 titled).

For the Australian March 2010 rating period there were 80 Tournaments rated (54 Classic, 26 Rapid) and 7088 games of which 4546 were in the ACF Classic rating system and 2542 were in the ACF Rapid rating system.  Top 10 - GM Z.Zhao NSW 2606 (+38), GM D.Smerdon ACT 2510 (=), IM G.Xie NSW 2463 (+39), IM A.Wohl NSW 2415 (-64), GM D.Johansen VIC 2412 (-23), IM S.Solomon QLD 2371 (+6), J.Ikeda ACT 2354 (+18), FM I.Bjelobrk NSW 2354 (=), IM G.Lane NSW 2328 (+12), IM I.Goldenberg VIC 2328 (=). 10 of the 16 rated above 2300 are from NSW. Senior over 80 - W.Leonhardt WA 1917, Over 70 - FM A.Flatow NSW 2104, Over 60 IM M.Rujevic VIC 2205.

Junior U20 - J.Ikeda ACT 2354, U18 - M.Illingworth NSW 2303, U16 and U14 World Under 12 Champion - B.Cheng VIC 2239  U12 - S. Gu NSW 1787, U10 - A.Smirnov NSW 1783.

Women - IWM A.Caoili QLD 2186, G.Nguyen SA 2101, IM I.Berezina-Feldman NSW 2048, IWM B.Dekic NSW 1930: Girls U20 S.Yu VIC 1798.    The seven round Canterbury Open at Lakemba Services Memorial Club starts on Monday evening 15 March.

Topalov Win Linares

Peter Parr (01/03/10)

 Veselin Topalov,the World Title Challenger,has won the Linares,Spain Super-Grandmaster Tournament half a point ahead of Russian Champion (and 2009 Linares Winner) Alexander Grischuk. Topalov led from the start but shared the lead with Grischuk after losing to him in round nine. Grischuk struggled to draw with Vallejo in the last round. Gelfand reached a very tricky drawn ending R+P v R+2P but was outplayed and lost against Topalov. Levon Aronian's second in Linares Australian Open Champion Aleks Wohl(NSW) was pleased that the World no 5 was undefeated with a good win over Gashimov in the final round. The event consisted of 30 games(white won 8,black 1 and 21 were drawn)  

 V.Topalov 2805 v V.Gashimov 2759  D11 1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. e3 a6 (The Chebanenko Slav - an extremely flexible weapon against the Queens Gambit) 5. Qc2 g6 6. Bd3 Bg7 7. O-O O-O 8. Nbd2 Nbd7 9. cxd5 cxd5 10. b3 Nb8! 11. Ba3 Nc6 12. Rac1 Be6 13. Qb2 Re8 14. h3 Rc8 15. Rc2 Bf5 16. Bxf5 gxf5 17. Ne1 Ne4 (17.. f4 was also possible) 18. Nd3 e5 19. Nxe4 dxe4 20. Nxe5 Nxe5 21. dxe5 Rxc2 (21.. Bxe5 was probably better) 22. Qxc2 Qa5 23. Bd6 Bxe5 24. b4 Qd8 25. Bxe5 Rxe5 26. Rc1 Rd5 27. a4 b5 28. axb5 Rxb5 29. Qa4 Qd6 30. Qa1! Qe5 31. Qxa6 Rxb4 32. Qh6 Rb8 33.g3 Qe6 34. Qf4 Rc8 35. Rd1 Rc6 36. Rd8+ Kg7 37. Kg2 h6 38. Qb8! Qf6 39. Rd5 (correct was 39 Rh8 winning) Re6 40. h4 h5? 41. Rd8 Kh7 42. Rg8 f4 43. gxf4 Qxh4 44. Rh8+ Kg6 45. Qg8+ Kf6 46. Qd8+ Re7 47.Rh6+ Kf5 48. Qd5+ 1-0

 A.Grischuk 2736 v B.Gelfand 2761 E55 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. e3 O-O 5. Bd3 d5 6. Nf3 c5 7. O-O dxc4 8. Bxc4 Nbd7 9. Qe2 a6 10. a4 cxd4 11. exd4 Nb6 12. Bd3 Nbd5 13. Nxd5 Nxd5 (A new move. 13.. exd5 was played in Ivanchuk-Speelman 1991) 14. Qe4 g6 15. Bh6 Re8 16. Ne5 Bd7 17. Qf3 Qe7 18. Be4 Bc6 19. Bxd5! Bxd5 20. Qf4 f5 21. h4 Rac8 22. Rac1 Bd6 23. Rfe1 Qf6 24. Rc3 Rxc3 25. bxc3 Rc8 26. Qg3 Be4 27. h5 Bxe5 28. dxe5 Qf7 29. Re3 Kh8 30. Qh4 gxh5 31. Rg3 Bd5 32. a5! (Black has no counter-play) f4 33. Rg7 Qf5 34. Qe7 Qe4 35. Qf6 1-0

 Final scores:- (6 players, 2757 average, 10 rounds) V.Topalov (BUL 2805) 6.5: A.Grischuk (Rus 2736) 6: L.Aronian (ARM 2781) 5.5: B.Gelfand (ISR 2761), V.Gashimov (AZE 2759),                                               F.Vallejo (ESP 2705) 4. The result leaves nineteen-year-old Magnus Carlsen of Norway World no 1 at 2812.9 followed by V.Topalov(BUL 2812.2),V.Kramnik(RUS 2789.9),V.Anand(IND 2788.7),L.Aronian(ARM 2783.5),A.Grischuk(RUS 2769.6)

 The most exciting club match in the history of the German Bundesliga was held on Saturday evening. Baden-Baden (average rating 2717) had won their first nine matches but lost 3-5 (six draws,2 losses)to Bremen(average rating 2679 who were outrated on all eight boards) in round 10. World Champion Vishy Anand 2788(Baden-Baden) drew with Vugar Gashimov(AZE 2759) on board one. 

Leading scores after three rounds of the City of Sydney Championship at the Sydney Chess Centre,Burwood (28 players,7 rounds) -  G.Charles (2049), G.McNamara (1993) 3: J.Bolens (2029), J.Nguyen (1840), C.Skulte (1776) 2.5.  Leading final scores in the City of Sydney Rapidplay (44 players,7 rounds) M.Illingworth (rapid rating 2511?) 6.5: FM Dr V.Smirnov 6, J.Bolens 5.5

 IM Gary Lane will be giving a simultaneous exhibition on Thursday evening 4 March at Parramatta RSL Club. The Mingara Recreation Club in Tumbi Umbi (NSW Central Coast) Rapid event was won by J.Bolens.  The 44th annual Begonia Open in Ballarat will be held over seven rounds during the Victorian Labour Day

Le Quang Liem wins in Moscow

Peter Parr (22/02/10)

 Nineteen-year-old Vietnamese Grandmaster Le Quang Liem tied for first place in the Moscow Open twelve days ago with a score of 7/9 and a 2792 performance rating. The event attracted 187 players including 74 grandmasters(30 rated above 2600). The next day the even stronger Aeroflot Open started in Moscow. The A1 Section was restricted to players rated at least 2550 and 80 players took part including 75 grandmasters. Le Quang Liem scored 7/9 (an astounding 2872 performance) finishing outright first.  World Junior Champion and French no 1 Maxime Vachier-Lagrave(GM at age 14)produced a neat mate in the event.

 L.Van Wely (NED 2641)v M.Vachier-Lagrave(FRA 2730) A22 1. c4 Nf6 2. Nc3 e5 3. g3 Bb4 4. Bg2 O-O 5. Nf3 Re8 6. O-O c6 7. Qb3 Na6 8. d3 Bxc3 9. Qxc3 d5 10. cxd5 Nxd5 11. Qc2 Bg4 12. h3 Bxf3 13. Bxf3 Nac7 14. a3 Ne6 15. e3 f5 16. Bg2 f4 17. Qc4 Kh8 18. Re1 Nb6 19. Qc2 fxg3 20. fxg3 Qd6 21. Rd1 Rad8 22. Kh2 Rf8 23. b4 Ng5 24. Qe2 e4 25. Qg4 Nf3+ 26. Bxf3 Rxf3 27. Ra2 Nc4 28. Rg2 Qd5 29. dxc4 Qxd1 30. Bb2 Rf7 31. Qxe4 Rf1 32. g4 Rh1+ 33. Kg3 Qe1+ 34. Kf4 Qh4 35. Qe5 Rf1+ 36. Ke4 Qh6 37. Qh5 Qe6+ 38. Be5 Qxc4+ 39. Bd4 Qe6+ 40. Be5 Qd5# 0-1

 E.Bacrot (FRA 2713,GM at age 14 in 1997) v E.Bareev (RUS 2643) D17 1. d4 d5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. c4 c6 4. Nc3 dxc4 5. a4 Bf5 6. Nh4 Bc8 7. e3 e5 8. Bxc4 exd4 9. exd4 Be7 10. O-O O-O 11. Re1 Na6 12. Bg5 Nc7 13. Qb3 a6 14. a5 Rb8 15. Rad1 Ncd5 16. Nxd5 Nxd5 17. Rxe7 Nxe7 18. Qa3 Re8 19. Re1 Qxd4 20. Bxf7+! 1-0

Leading final scores Le Quang Liem (VIE 2647) 7,A.Korobov(UKR 2648) 6.5,A.Motylev(RUS 2697),J.Zhou(CHN 2632),N.Nguyen(VIE 2616),B.Grachev(RUS 2653) 6.

Young top level grandmasters are emerging from many countries. The Cappelle-La-Grande Open in France had 652 players including 78 grandmasters. The outright winner on 7.5/9 (performance 2734) was 50th seed GM Yaroslav Zherebukh (UKR 2531) aged only sixteen. There were 88 Grandmaster titles(33 from USSR) awarded by the World Chess Federation as at the end of 1972.There have been 1328 GM titles awarded as at August 2009. The massive increase is due to an enormous number of chess players of all levels in nearly every country worldwide.

Linares,Spain progress scores after round 7 (6 players,2757 average,10 rounds). V.Topalov(BUL 2805) 5,L.Aronian(ARM 2781),V.Gashimov(AZE 2759),A.Grischuk(RUS 2736) 3.5,B.Gelfand(ISR 2761) 3,F.Vallejo(ESP 2705) 2.5.  Former World Champion Veselin Topalov with three wins and four draws is performing at 2901 with three rounds to play. Topalov is on top of the World Rating List(updated daily) at 2814 just above nineteen-year-old Magnus Carlsen(NOR) in second place at 2813.

Raul Samar won the Newcastle Open Grand Prix weekend tournament. Samar and top seed Vladimir Smirnov each won their first four games and drew with each other in round 5. David Castor who shared the lead on 4.5/5 drew with Smirnov in the final round but Samar defeated Johny Bolens to take outright first place. Leading final scores (40 players, 6 rounds) R.Samar (2104) 5.5, FM Dr V.Smirnov (2297), D.Castor (1885) 5, Dr J.Chan (1986) and B.O'Riordan (1899) 4.5.

The top seed in the City of Sydney Championship FM Tomek Rej (a 3-time NSW Junior Champion) was defeated in the second round by Joseph Nguyen(NSW Junior champion 2006). 28 players are competing in the seven round event at the Sydney Chess Centre in Burwood. Six players - Australian Under 12 Champion Andrew Pan(1672),J.Nguyen(1840),B.Ingram (1944),G.McNamara(1993),J.Bolens(2029) and G.Charles(2049) share the lead with 2/2.

Thousands of players in Moscow

Peter Parr (15/02/10)

 569 players from over 100 Russian cities competed in the 10 categories of the finals of the Youth Championships at the Russian State School Social University in Moscow.

The Moscow Open followed in four divisions - seniors 131, women 140, under 2300 rated - 401 and in the top section 187 players including 74 grandmasters (30 rated over 2600).

 Here are two games from the main event. A.Motylev 2697 v M.Ulibin 2548 French Defence 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. e5 b6 5. a3 Bxc3+ 6. bxc3 Qd7 7. Qg4 f5 8. Qg3 Ba6 9. Bxa6 Nxa6 10. Ne2 Kf7 11. h4! (World Champion Anand first played this move) c5 12. h5 Rc8 13. h6 g6 14. Qh4! cxd4 15. cxd4 Rxc2 16. Rh3 Qb5 17. Nc3 Qc4 18. Bd2 Nb8? 19. Rb1 Nc6 20. Nb5 Qa2 21. Nd6+ Kf8 22. Rd1 Qb2 23. Rd3 Rxd2 24. R3xd2 Qxa3 25. Rc2 1-0

 E.Najer 2665 v V.Shinkevich 2501 Slav Defence  1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Nf3 e6 5. Bg5 h6 6. Bh4 dxc4 7. e4 g5 8. Bg3 b5 9. Be2 Bb7 10. O-O Nbd7 11. Ne5 Bg7 12. Nxd7 Nxd7 13. Bd6 e5 14. Bg4 exd4 15. e5! Nxe5 (if 15... dxc3 16 e6! Is very strong for white) 16. Qxd4 h5 17. Rfe1 f6 18. Bxe5 fxe5 19. Rxe5+ Bxe5 20. Qxe5+ Kf7 21. Be6+ Kg6 22. Rd1 Qf6 23. Bf5+ 1-0(after Qxf5 24 Rd6+ wins).     Leading final scores - Gold K.Chernyshov (RUS 2556,perf 2726,seeded 46,age 42), Silver L. Le Quang (VIE 2647,perf 2792), Bronze E.Bareev (RUS 2643,perf 2793),E.Inarkiev (RUS 2649,perf 2803) all 7/9. The countback method for medals was based on the number of wins. Inarkiev had the highest performance rating but was placed fourth on countback.

 The day after the Moscow Open ended the Aeroflot Open started in Moscow. The  A1 section restricted to players rated at least 2550 attracted 80 players(75 grandmasters and 5 International Masters). Progress scores after round five - L.Le Quang(VIE 2647),N.Nguyen(VIE 2616),B.Grachev(RUS 2653) four points. The A2 section for players rated between 2549 and 2400 attracted 28 GM's, The B Division is for players rated 2399 to 2200 and the C Division for players rated below 2200.  

Results of the first round at Linares, Spain (6 players, 2757 average rating, 10 rounds) - L.Aronian(ARM 2781) 0.5 v A.Grischuk(RUS 2736) 0.5, B.Gelfand(ISR 2761)0.5 v V.Gashimov(AZE 2759)0.5, F.Vallejo(ESP 2705) 0.5 v V.Topalov(BUL 2805) 0.5

 The Australian Junior Chess League received 58 applicants for the 2010 Junior Elite Training Squad (JETS). 30 will be selected including at least 10 of each gender. Applicants are judged by enthusiasm and commitment as well as rating, with priority for applicants aged 14 and under. The main training camp will be in Sydney 5-10 July with one day mini camps in other major cities.  A full day of chess has been organized at the Mingara Recreation Club in Tumbi Umbi on the NSW Central Coast on Saturday 20th February. An eight round open tournament with 15 minutes per player per game starts at 10am and this will be followed by a five minute blitz tournament commencing at 7pm. 

The New South Wales Chess Association seven round one day City of Sydney Rapid Play (20 minutes game + 10 seconds per move, open to all players) Championship will be held at the Sydney Chess Centre, George St, Burwood (contact Brett Tindall tel 9745 1170) commencing at 11am on Sunday 21st February. The City of Sydney Championship (FIDE and ACF rated open to all players) held over seven Wednesday evenings at the Sydney Chess Centre started last week with 28 players. The top seeds all won their first round games. FIDE Master Tomek Rej 2325 is the no 1 seed and firm favorite to win the event. Late entries close this afternoon with half-point byes allotted for the first round.

Carlsen wins Wijk aan Zee

Peter Parr (08/02/10)

 Nineteen-year-old Magnus Carlsen of Norway,the highest rated player in the world, has won the strong Wijk aan Zee,Netherlands GM tournament gaining another three rating points. Carlsen who was training with Kasparov in Morocco before the event said that his most important priority was to continue to improve his own play. He thought he played some good games but played badly in others(his only loss was to ex-world champion Kramnik). Alexei Shirov with less than a minute left on his clock accepted a draw offer in the final round missing a forced win and a tie for first place. World Champion Vishy Anand drew eleven games but defeated  Shirov and Kramnik.

 V.Anand 2790 v V.Kramnik 2788 C42 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. Nxe5 d6 4. Nf3 Nxe4 5. d4 d5 6. Bd3 Nc6 7. O-O Be7 8. c4 Nb4 9. Be2 O-O 10. Nc3 Bf5 11. a3 Nxc3 12. bxc3 Nc6 13. Re1 Re8 14. cxd5 Qxd5 15. Bf4 Rac8 16. h3 Be4 17. Qc1 Na5 18. Qe3 Bf8 19. c4 Qd8 20. Ne5 Bf5 21. Qc3 b6 22. Rad1 Qf6 23. Qg3 Nc6 24. Ng4 Qg6 25. d5 Na5 26. Bxc7 Bc2? 27. Rc1 Nb3? 28. Rxc2! Qxc2 29. Nh6+ Kh8 30. Nxf7+ Kg8 31. Nh6+ Kh8 32. Nf7+ Kg8 33. Nh6+ Kh8 34. Be5! Qg6 35. Bg4 Rxc4 36. Qxb3 Rxe5 37. Rxe5 Rc1+ 38. Kh2 Bd6 39. f4 Bxe5 40. fxe5 gxh6 41. Qe3 Qb1 42. d6 Rh1+ 43. Kg3 Re1 44. Qf4 Rf1 45. Bf3 1-0

 Leading final scores (14 players,2719 av rating,13 rounds) - M.Carlsen(NOR 2810) 8.5,V.Kramnik(RUS 2788),A.Shirov(ESP 2723) 8,V.Anand(IND 2790),H.Nakamura(USA) 7.5,V.Ivanchuk(UKR 2749),S.Karjakin(RUS 2720) 7. Netherlands Champion fifteen-year-old Grandmaster Anish Giri,seeded 12th,won the GM-B Group(av 2629) scoring 9/13. Twenty-year-old GM Li Chao (CHN 2604) won the GM-C Group with 10/13.   The Gibtelecom Masters in Gibraltar (224 players including 35 GM's,10 rounds)resulted in a nine-way tie for first place with a score of 7.5/10. GM Michael Adams of England won the play-off. Ibrahim Ogada-Osir(AUS 2104) scored 4.5/9(2274 performance). 84 competed in the main supporting event.

 Former NSW Junior Champion Quentin Reitmans was recently elected Webmaster of the NSW Chess Association. Reitmans launched the new much improved website on Saturday afternoon at www.nswca.org.au  The NSWCA reports a significant increase in the number of new chess club members in recent months and an increase in the number of tournaments.   Leading final scores in the NSWCA City of Sydney Lightning (33 players,9 rounds, new time control 3 minutes plus 2 seconds per move) - FM Dr V.Smirnov 8,Dr J.Chan,J.Nguyen 7,A.Smirnov 6.5. Vladimir Smirnov also won the 29 player Norths lightning last Tuesday.

 The City of Sydney Championship at the Sydney Chess Centre in George St Burwood (Tel Brett Tindall 9745 1170 ) held over seven consecutive Wednesday evenings starts this week on 10th February. The annual event started in 1937 (Lloyd Fell now aged 91 first won the title in 1944 - 66 years ago at the age of 25). The Championship,one of the most important annual events in the NSWCA calendar, is this year open to players of all standards. The event will be rated by the World Chess Federation(which now rates club players to grandmasters) and the Australian Chess Federation. Estimates are that over 90% of people who can play chess do not compete in tournaments or go to clubs. Entries so far for the City of Sydney range from beginner to master - all welcome.

 Other NSW events include Rapid on 8th,15th,22nd Feb at Lakemba Services Memorial Club.   Norths Club Championship in 12 player divisions starting on Tue 9 Feb. The Panthers Newcastle ACF Open Grand Prix weekender will be held 13-14 February. The Rooty Hill RSL Autumn Swiss starts on Monday 15 February.

Bobby Cheng Youngest Champion

Peter Parr (31/1/10)

Twelve-year-old Bobby Cheng (VIC) has become the youngest ever Australian Junior Under 18 champion scoring 10 points (9 wins, 2 draws) from 11 games. Cheng received coaching from Olympic representative Ewen Green for 2 years in Auckland before arriving in Melbourne where his regular coach is Grandmaster Darryl Johansen. Cheng won the 142 player World Under twelve championship in Kemer, Turkey in November 2009. Cheng played 3 times previously for New Zealand in France 2005, Turkey 2007 and Vietnam 2008. Under 18 (47 players, 11 rounds) B.Cheng 10, A.Brown 8, Y.Yuan, J.Morris, Y.Ding 7.5  Under 12 (46 players, 11 rounds) A.Pan 11 (100%), J.Behar 8.5  Girls Under 18 (14 players, 9 rounds) A.Kanagarajah and L.Simmonds 8: M.Setiabudi 7. Girls Under 12 (10 players, 9 rounds) S.Narenthran 9(100%), D.Lim 7.

 Australian Junior Champions are: U18 FM B.Cheng (VIC), U16 FM J.Morris (VIC), U14 A.Stahnke (QLD), U12 A.Pan (NSW), U10 P.Wallmueller (VIC), U8 E.Lim (VIC), Girls U18, L.Simmonds (QLD), Girls U16 A.Kanagarajah (QLD), Girls U14 M.Setiabudi (ACT), Girls U12 S.Narenthran (VIC), Girls U10 K.Christian (NSW), Girls U8 Y.Perera (TAS).  The 117 player Australian Junior 2010 at Hutchins School Hobart was the biggest national chess title event ever held in Tasmania. Three of the 42 players who competed in the last Australian Junior in Tasmania in 1975 became Grandmasters.

 International Master George Xie won every game in the Australian Day Weekend tournament at Norths, Cammeray, Sydney.  Xie has been in excellent form in January scoring his second grandmaster norm with 9/11 at Norths in the Australian Championship a few weeks ago finishing behind Grandmaster Zong Zhao on 10/11.  Leading final scores (72 players, 7 rounds): IM G.Xie (2424) 7, CM M.Illingworth (2264), Dr J.Chan (1986), G.Charles (2049) 5.5: FM T.Rej (2325), N.Wright (2124), B.Mandla (2030), FA N.Chernih (2062), J.Bolens (2029), IWM B.Dekic (1934), C.Rowlison (1770), B.Ingram (1944) all 5.  The City of Sydney Lightning Championship will be played at the Sydney Chess Centre at George St,Burwood on Wednesday evening. The City of Sydney Championship at the same venue will be a seven round event held over seven consecutive Wednesday evenings commencing on 10th February. This tournament is one of the most important annual events in the NSWCA Calendar open to players of all standards and will be rated by the World Chess Federation and the ACF.

World Number 1 nineteen-year-old Magnus Carlsen has taken the sole lead in the Wijk aan Zee(NED) GM tournament with one round to play. Shirov started with a fiery 5/5 but was overtaken by ex-world champion Kramnik in round 10. World Champion Anand started with nine draws but beat Shirov in round 10 and Kramnik in round 12.  M.Carlsen 2810 v V.Kramnik 2788 E04 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 d5 4. g3 dxc4 5. Bg2 Bb4+ 6. Bd2 a5 7. Nc3 O-O 8. a3 Be7 9. Qa4 c6 10. Qxc4 b5 11. Qb3 Ba6 12. Bg5 Nbd7 13. Bxf6 gxf6 14. Qc2 b4 15. Na4 Rc8 16. O-O c5 17. d5 exd5 18. Bh3?(18 Rfd1-Kasparov) Bb5 19. axb4 axb4 20. Rfd1 d4 21. Bf5 Ne5 22. Bxh7+ Kg7 23. Nxe5 fxe5 24. Bf5 Rc6 25. Qe4 Rh8 26. Qxe5+ Bf6 27. Qe4 Re8 28. Qg4+ Kf8 29. Be4?(29 Bd7-Kasparov) c4 30. Bxc6 Bxc6 31. Qh5 Re5 32. Qh6+ Ke7 33. e4 d3 34. Qe3 Bxe4  35. Nb6?? (serious time trouble) Bb7! 36. Qf4 Qxb6 37. Qxc4 Re2 38. Rf1 0-1  Leading scores after round 12 (14 players,2719 av rating,13 rounds) - M.Carlsen(NOR 2810) 8,V.Kramnik(RUS 2788),A.Shirov(ESP 2723) 7.5,V.Anand(IND 2790) 7,H.Nakamura(USA 2708),S.Karjakin(UKR  2720),V.Ivanchuk(UKR 2749) 6.5.

Nakamura Stops Shirov

Peter Parr (25/1/10)

 The United States Champion Hikaru Nakamura stopped the runaway leader Alexei Shirov with a decisive win in the seventh round of the annual Wijk aan Zee (NED) GM Tournament. Shirov had taken a substantial lead by winning his first five games all played aggressively by Shirov.

 Nineteen-year-old Magnus Carlsen,the highest rated player in the world,is now in joint second place only half a point behind Shirov with six rounds to play.The reigning World Champion Viswanathan Anand of India has drawn all seven games.   Nakamura wins the following game with a series of sacrifices in a sharp Najdorf Sicilian

  H.Nakamura 2708 v L.Van Wely 2641  B96   1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. Bg5 e6 7. f4 Nbd7 8. Qf3 Qc7 9. Bxf6 Nxf6 10. g4 b5 11. g5 Nd7 12. O-O-O Nc5 13. a3 Rb8 14. b4 Nd7 15. Nd5 exd5 16. exd5 Be7 17. Re1 Ne5 18. fxe5 Bxg5+ 19. Kb1 dxe5 20. Nc6 Bf6 21. Bd3 h5 22. Rxe5+ Bxe5 23. Re1 Bg4 24. Qf4 O-O 25. Rxe5 g6 26. Qf6 Rbe8 27. Ne7+ Rxe7 28. Rxe7 Qxh2 29. Bxg6 Qh1+ 30. Kb2 Qxd5 31. Bxf7+ Qxf7 32. Rxf7 Rxf7 33. Qxa6 Kg7 34. Qxb5 Kg6 35. Qc4 Rd7 36. b5 Kg5 37. b6 Bf3 38. Qb5+ Rd5 39. Qb3 1-0

 V.Ivanchuk 2749 v L.Van Wely 2641  B96 - Black is already in trouble after only 15 moves and Ivanchuk wins comfortably. 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. Bg5 e6 7. f4 Nbd7 8. Qe2 Qc7 9. O-O-O b5 10. a3 Be7 11. g4 Rb8 12. Bg2 b4 13. axb4 Rxb4 14. e5 ! dxe5 15. Nc6 Bb7 16. Nxb4 Bxb4 17. fxe5 Bxc3 18. exf6 gxf6 19. bxc3 fxg5 20. Bxb7 Qxb7 21. h4 Qc7 22. hxg5 Qxc3 23. Qxa6 Nc5 24. Qa8+ Ke7 25. Qa7+ Kf8 26. Rhf1 1-0

 Leading scores after round 7 (14 players, 2719 average rating  ,13 rounds)  A.Shirov(ESP 2723) 5.5(performance rating so far 2912) ,H.Nakamura (USA 2708) and M. Carlsen (NOR 2810) 5,  V.Kramnik(RUS 2788) 4.5,L.Dominguez (CUB 2712) and V.Ivanchuk(UKR 2749) all 4.

 The youngest ever  Dutch Champion fifteen-year-old GM Anish Giri(NED 2588) leads the strong Grandmaster "B" Group. Giri became a GM at the age of 14. USA GM Ray Robson also aged fifteen leads the Grandmaster "C" Group with 5.5/7

  The Australian Junior Championship is in progress in Hobart in four divisions. Leading scores Under 18 (47 players) - World Under 12 Champion Bobby Cheng (VIC) 8.5/9,Andrew Brown (ACT) 7.5,FM J.Morris (VIC) and Eugene Schon(VIC) 6.5,John Papantoniou(NSW) and Samuel Dalton(VIC) 6.     Under 12 (46 players) - Andrew Pan(NSW) 9/9,Joshua Behar(NSW) 7,Callum Gray(QLD) and Martin Jack(QLD) 6.5.  Girls Under 18 (14 players) Abbie Kanagarajah(QLD) 6.5/7.   Girls under 12 (10 players) Savithri Narenthran (VIC 7/7) Grace Alvares(NSW) 6 . James Morris won the rapidplay.

 Seventeen-year-old Clive Ng playing in his last tournament as a junior,has won the NSW Junior League's Summer Two-Day Tournament. He finished a full point ahead of Bernard Chau,the winner of the Summer Three-Day Tournament two weeks ago. Leading final scores (121 players,12 rounds) Clive Ng 11,Bernard Chau 10,Cedric Koh and Leo Jiang 9.

 The Eastern Suburbs Leagues Club (Bondi Junction) Summer Challenge tournament commences on Monday 1 February. An Open and under 1700 rated event each of nine rounds on consecutive Monday evenings will finish on March 29. Players of all standards are welcome.

Russia Wins World Teams

Peter Parr (18/1/10)

 Russia,the top seeds, have won the World Teams Championship in Bursa,Turkey. The new Russian Champion Alexander Grischuk (2732) scored 4.5/7 (perf 2797) on top board but Alexander Morozevich 2732 was out of form scoring 2/6 on board 3. Russian Nikita Vitiugov 2692 outclassed his rivals on bottom board scoring 5.5/6 (pr 2939) and Shakhriyar Mamedyarov(AZE 2741) scored 8/9 on board 4 (pr 2950). United States Champion Hikaru Nakamura made the best result on board 1 (6/8 pr 2851) winning the following game against World Number 6 Boris Gelfand.

 B.Gelfand (ISR 2761) v H.Nakamura (USA 2708) E97  1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 g6 3 Nc3 Bg7 4 e4 d6 5 Nf3 0-0 6 Be2 e5 7 0-0 Nc6 8 d5 Ne7 9 Nd2 Ne8 10 b4 f5 11 c5 Nf6 12 f3 f4 13 Nc4 g5 14 a4 Ng6 15 Ba3 Rf7 16 b5 dxc5 17 Bxc5 h5 18 a5 g4 19 b6 g3 20 Kh1 Bf8 21 d6 (new move) axb6 22 Bg1 Nh4 23 Re1 Nxg2!! 24 dxc7 Nxe1 25 Qxe1 g2+ 26 Kxg2 Rg7+ 27 Kh1 Bh3!(threat..Bg2 mate) 28 Bf1 Qd3 29 Nxe5 Bxf1 30 Qxf1 Qxc3 31 Rc1 Qxe5 32 c8Q Rxc8 33 Rxc8 Qe6 white is a piece down and resigned  0-1

 Russia lost to Greece in round 2 and drew with Armenia in round 7 and won their other seven matches to take the gold medals. USA seeded fifth took silver and India seeded sixth won the bronze medals. Leading final match scores - Russia `15/18,USA and India 13,Azerbaijan and Armenia 12.

 The 72nd annual Corus tournaments in the Dutch seaside town of Wijk aan Zee started on Saturday. The top three Grandmaster Groups are 14 player round robins with a time control of 40 moves in 2 hours,followed by 20 moves in 1 hour,followed by 15 mins for the rest of the game with 30 second increments per move. The tradition of a game lasting up to seven hours has also been maintained in a number of other leading tournaments. Many other events are now played at a quicker rate leading to a lower standard of play. The top three players in the A Group are World no 1 Magnus Carlsen(NOR 2810),World Champion Viswanathan Anand(IND 2790) and ex-World Champion Vladimir Kramnik(RUS 2788). The only two winners in round one were A.Shirov and L.Van Wely against P.Leko and N.Short with all other games drawn.

 The Australian Chess Federation Steiner Medal for player of the year was won by GM David Smerdon(ACT),Koshnitsky Medal for administration to Allan Wright(NSW) and Arlauskas Junior Medal to Bobby Cheng (VIC) who won the World Under Twelve Championship in 2009.

 Leading scores in the Australian Junior in Hobart - Under 18 (47 players) - A.Brown(ACT) 4/4,B.Cheng(VIC),A.Milton(SA),J.Papantoniou(NSW) 3.5.   Under 12 (46 players) - A.Pan(NSW) and J.Behar(NSW) 4/4.  Girls U18 (14 players) - M.Setiabudi(ACT),A.Kanagarajah(QLD),L.Simmonds(QLD) 2/2.  Girls U12 (10 players) - K.Christian(NSW),D.Lim(VIC),C.O'Rourke(NSW),S.Narenthran(VIC) 2

 The NSW Junior League's Summer One-Day Tournament has been won by thirteen-year-old Joshua Lau. Leading final scores(106 players,9 rounds) Joshua Lau 8,William Cook and Alexander Mehan 7.5. The NSW Junior League's Summer Two-Day Tournament will be held this Wednesday and Thursday at Lidcombe. For enquiries see www.nswjcl.org.au or contact Richard Gastineau-Hills,phone 9412 4579.

 The NSW Chess Association Australia Day Weekend tournament is the first of 50 events in the 2010 Yulgilbar-Think Big Australian chess grand prix. The tournament will be held over seven rounds on Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th January at Norths,Cammeray,Sydney. The very successful 187 player Australian Championship (won by Grandmaster Z.Zhao of NSW) and supporting tournaments finished last Wednesday at the same venue.

Zhao Wins Australian Championship
Peter Parr

Australia's leading Grandmaster Zong-Yuan Zhao has won the Australian
Championship at Norths,Cammeray,Sydney scoring an incredible nine wins and
two draws in the eleven round event.
The only comparable result in modern times was Johansen's title win 20 years
ago in Sydney which was also 10/11(9 wins,2 draws). Garry Koshnitsky and
Lajos Steiner (North Sydney) won the title each with a higher percentage
score over 60 years ago.

Zhao and IM George Xie shared the lead with 8/9 and Xie won again in round
10 in another double-edged game against 16-year-old local Max Illingworth.
IM G.Xie 2448 v M.Illingworth 2248  B06  1 d4 g6 2 e4 Bg7 3 Nc3 d6 4 f4 a6 5
Nf3 b5 6 Bd3 Nd7 7 0-0 c5 8 d5 c4 9 Be2 Qb6+ 10 Kh1 N(1)-f6 11 e5 Ng4 12 e6
fxe6 13 dxe6 N(7)-f6 14 Nd4 Bb7 15 f5 0-0-0 16 a4 h5 17 axb5 Ne4 18 Nxe4
Qxd4 19 f6 Bxf6 20 Nxf6 Nf2+ 21 Rxf2 Qxf2 22 Qf1 Qxf1+ 23 Bxf1 exf6 24 Bxc4
R(h)-e8 25 bxa6 Bc6 26 Be3 d5 27 Bd3 Rxe6 28 Bd4 f5 29 Kg1 Kb8 30 b4 Be8 31
b5 Kc7 32 Ra3 Re1+ 33 Kf2 Rb1 34 Rc3+ Kd6 35 Bb6 d4 36 Bc7+ Kd7 37 Rc5 Rc8
38 b6 Bf7 39 Bb5+ Rxb5 40 Rxb5 Re8 41 Rb4 Kc6 42 b7 Kxc7 43 a7 1-0

Zhao kept pace beating FM Eddy Levi,IM Solomon lost to GM Johansen and IM
Wohl lost to GM Jones. FM Vladimir Smirnov won a very important game against
IM Gary Lane giving Smirnov his
Second IM norm(2450+ performance). Meanwhile Xie, performing above 2700,
needed a higher rated opponent(average must be 2380+) in the last round to
secure his second GM Norm - he could even afford to lose. Xie was paired
with the defending champion Stephen Solomon and lost but got his GM norm.
Zhao won the following tactical brevity.  

GM Z.Zhao 2572 v FM T.Rej 2364 1 Nf3 Nf6 2 c4 c5 3 Nc3 d5 4 cxd5 Nxd5 5 g3
Nc6 6 Bg2 Nxc3 7 bxc3 e5 8 0-0 Be7 9 d3 0-0 10 Rb1 Qc7 11 Be3 Rd8 12 Nd2 Be6
13 Qa4 Bd7 14 f4 Nd4 15 Qd1 Nf5 16 Rxb7 Qxb7 17 Bxb7 Nxe3 18 Qc1 Rab8 19 Rf3
exf4 20 gxf4 Nf5 21 Be4 Rb6 22 Nc4 Rg6+ 23 Kh1 Rb8 24 Ne5 Rgb6 25 Nxd7 Rb1
26 Rf1  1-0

Leading final scores(28 players,11 rounds)- GM Z.Zhao (NSW 2572) 10,IM G.Xie
(NSW 2448) 9, G.Jones(ENG 2561) 7.5,GM D.Johansen(VIC 2453) 7,FM Dr
V.Smirnov(NSW 2392),IM S.Solomon(QLD 2428),M.Illingworth(NSW 2248) 6.5,
J.Ikeda(ACT 2275,IM G.Lane(NSW 2377),IM A.Wohl(NSW 2458),FM D.Hamilton(VIC
2193) all 6. David Garner(ENG 2178) and Jason Hu(NSW 2113) tied for first
place each scoring 9/11 in the supporting 95 player major event. Mark Stokes
(QLD 1538) won the 42 player Minor event scoring 9/11.

e and Zhao) who between them had won the Australian Championship nineteen
times and between them held the title for over 36 years in the 56 year
period 1954-2010 attended the closing ceremony. John Purdy who first won the
event 56 years ago learnt from his father Cecil,a four-time Australian
Champion (and First World Correspondence Champion) and from his grandfather
Spencer Crakanthorp also a former Australian Champion. The five older
champions aged 45-66 who competed in 2010 all finished with over 50% but
only two of the eleven teenagers scored above 50%.

The 120 player Australian Junior Championships in four divisions has just
started in Hobart. IM Anthony Ker(2321) has retained his title  of New
Zealand Champion scoring 8.5/11 half a point ahead of FM Nicholas Croad
(2271). Ker has won the title 11 times in

Zhao and Xie Way Ahead
Peter Parr (13/1/10)

Grandmaster Zong-Yuan Zhao and International Master George Xie are way ahead
of the field by a massive 2.5 points with two games to play in the
Australian Championship at Norths,Cammeray,Sydney. Zhao had a slight endgame
advantage against Vladimir Smirnov in round eight but Smirnov was never in
real danger and drew. George Xie joined Zhao in the joint lead winning the
following game against the eighteen-year-old Australian lightning champion
Junta Ikeda. Xie was in serious trouble in the tactical struggle but Ikeda
was extremely short of time by move 25. The game ends with a neat queen
sacrifice forcing Ikeda to resign. Stephen Solomon,the defending
champion,beat former Oceania Champion Vladimir Feldman and GM Gawain Jones
defeated Eddy Levi. Wohl won material against Lane but the counter-attack
was decisive in Lane's favour.

J.Ikeda 2275 v IM G.Xie 2448 A07  1 Nf3 d5 2 g3 g6 3 Bg2 Bg7 4 0-0 e5 5 d3
Ne7 6 Nbd2 0-0 7 e4 d4 8 Qe2 c5 9 Ne1 Nbc6 10 f4 Qc7 11 Ndf3 b5 12 Nh4 exf4
13 gxf4 f5 14 Bd2 Kh8 15 Nef3 fxe4 16 dxe4 Be6 17 Ng5 Bc4 18 Qg4 Rae8 19 Qh3
Bg8 20 f5 Ne5 21 Bf4 Qc8 22 Qg3 N7c6 23 fxg6 h6 24 Bh3 Qd8 25 Nh7 Bxh7 26
gxh7 d3 27 Nf5 Rf7 28 cxd3 Kxh7 29 Rad1 Ng6 30 Kh1 Rg8 31 Rg1 Bd4 32 Rg2
Nce7 33 Bxh6 Be5 34 Qe3 Nxf5 35 exf5? Nh4 36 Bg5? Nxg2 37 Qxe5 Qxg5 38 Rg1
Qe3 39 Qe6 Qxg1+!  0-1

IM A.Wohl 2458 v IM G.Lane 2377  A08  1 g3 d5 2 Nf3 Nf6 3 Bg2 g6 4 0-0 Bg7 5
d3 0-0 6 N(b)-d2 c5 7 e4 Nc6 8 c3 e5 9 exd Nxd5 10 Re1 Re8 11 Ne4 b6 12 a3
a5 13 h4 h6 14 a4 Ba6 15 Bf1 Qd7 16  Qb3 R(a)-d8 17 N(4)-d2 Qf5 18 Re4 Kh8
19 Ne1 Qd7 20 Nc4 f5 21 Re2 f4 22 Bg2 fxg3 23 Nxb6 Nxb6 24 Qxb6 Bxd3 25 Bxc6
Qh3 26 Nxd3 Qh2+ 27 Kf1 Rxd3 28 Bxh6 Bxh6 29 Bg2 Qxh4 30 Qxg6 R(e)-d8 31
Rxe5 Rd1+ 32 Re1 Qc4+ 33 Kg1 gxf2+ 34 Kxf2 Qh4+ 0-1

Zhao outplayed Solomon in the end game and won in round nine. Lane-Xie was
an important theoretical duel with Lane at one stage four pawns ahead. Xie
had compensation and Lane became short of time and Xie emerged with a
winning position.  GM Darryl Johansen gained the advantage against GM Gawain
Jones who fought back to draw. Ikeda drew with Smirnov. Sixteen-year-old Max
Illingworth won his third consecutive game and is tied for third place.
Only 2 of the 11 teenagers are above 50% with two rounds to play.

Zhao and Xie with 8/9 are both performing above 2700. Xie (2448)is very
close to his second Grandmaster norm(three norms required and a rating above
2500). The minimum average rating of opponents for a GM norm is 2380 and a
2600+ performance over nine or more games is required. Xie's opponents
average 2365 after nine rounds and 2372 after ten rounds - so a loss to a
higher rated player is a GM norm!  

Two players Ikeda and Smirnov are very close to an International Master
norm(2450+ result). Ikeda has scored 5.5/9 with the average rating of
opponents 2363 and Smirnov 5.5/9 with the average rating of opponents 2355.
The IM norm for each is 6/9 so a higher percentage score is needed in the
final rounds for each to earn an IM norm.

Leading scores after round nine (28 players,11 rounds) - GM Z.Zhao (NSW
2572) and IM G.Xie(NSW 2448) 8, GM D.Johansen(VIC 2453),GM G.Jones(ENG
2561),J.Ikeda (ACT 2275),FM Dr V.Smirnov (NSW 2392),IM S.Solomon(QLD
2428),M.Illingworth(NSW 2248) all 5.5, IM G.Lane(NSW 2377),IM A.Wohl(NSW
2458),FM E.Levi (VIC 2271) all 5. David Garner(ENG 2178) and Jason Hu(NSW
2113) share the lead with 7.5/9 in the 95 player supporting Major tournament
and Mark Stokes(QLD 1538) leads the Minor event with 8.5/9. Leading scores
in the New Zealand Championship in Auckland(28 players,11 rounds)- IM
Anthony Ker(2321) and FM Nicholas Croad(2271) 7.5/10.

Six of the best from Zhao and Xie
Peter Parr (11/1/10)

Grandmaster Zong-Yuan Zhao and IM George Xie have each won six of the best
games after seven rounds of the Australian Championship at
Norths,Cammeray,Sydney. Zhao,the top seed,a solid positional player,conceded
half point to second seed GM Gawain Jones of England in round six and he
defeated 3rd seed Wohl,4th seed GM Johansen,5th seed Xie,8th seed Lane,12th
seed Ikeda and 15th seed Illingworth for an overall 2825 performance rating.

Xie is a sharp tactician who lost to Zhao in round five but his six wins
have given him a 2675 performance rating (2600+ required for his second GM
norm).Xie beat GM Jones in round three and won the following splendid game
against five-time Australian Champion GM Darryl Johansen in round seven.  

IM G.Xie 2448 v GM D.Johansen 2453 Rd 7 A48 1 d4 Nf6 2 Nf3 e6 3 Bg5 h6 4 Bh4
d6 5 Nbd2 g5 6 Bg3 Nh5 7 e4 Bg7 8 c3 Nc6 9 Bd3 Nxg3 10 hxg3 Qe7 11 Qb3 a6
12-0-0 b5 13 d5 Ne5 14 Nxe5 Bxe5 15 Kb1 Bd7 16 Rdf1 c5 17 dxc6 Bxc6 18 f4Bg7
19 Nf3 Qb7 20 Qc2 gxf4 21 gxf4 Ke7 22 Nd4 Rac8 23 f5 Bxd4 24 cxd4 e5 25 dxe5
dxe5 26 Qc5+ Kd7 27 Rd1 f6 28 Bxb5+ Kc7 29 Bxc6  1-0 (after 29...Qxc6 30

FM J.Morris 2305 v B.Atzmon-Simon 2182 Rd 7 B09 1 e4 d6 2 d4 Nf6 3 Nc3 g6 4
f4 Bg7 5 Nf3 0-0 6 e5 Nfd7 7 h4 c5 8 h5 cxd 9 hxg hxg 10 Qxd4 Qb6 11 Nd5 Nc6
12 Qa4 Qd8 13 f5 e6 14 Bg5 f6 15 Qh4 gxf5 16 Qh7+ Kf7 17 exf6 Qa5 18 Bd2
Nxf6 19 Ng5+ Ke8 20 Qg6+  1-0

Eighteen-year-old Australian lightning champion Junta Ikeda of Canberra is
in third place (performance 2505) with five wins and losses with the black
pieces to GM Zhao and GM Jones. Ikeda and FM Dr Vladimir Smirnov are well in
the running for an IM norm(2450+ result). 17 of the 28 players are within
half a point of 50% but only 1 of the 11 teenagers are among the 11 players
above 50%. The best performances to date by the other teenagers are
Illingworth 2294,Wallis 2280,Yuan 2270,Nakauchi 2248 and Ly 2239.

Leading scores after round 7 (28 players,11 rounds) - GM Z.Zhao(NSW 2572)
6.5,IM G.Xie(NSW 2448) 6,J.Ikeda(ACT 2275) 5,FM Dr V.Smirnov(RUS 2392),IM
S.Solomon(QLD 2428) 4.5,GM D.Johansen(VIC 2453),GM G.Jones(ENG 2561),IM
G.Lane(NSW 2377),IM A.Wohl(NSW 2458),FM E.Levi(VIC 2271),IM V.Feldman(NSW
2271) all 4. David Garner (England) leads the 95 player major supporting
event with 6.5/7 followed by Jason Hu(NSW 2113) on 6 points. Mark Stokes
leads the minor on 6.5/7. Joshua Dalton(VIC) won the Norths Classic scoring
5.5/7.  IM Anthony Ker(2321) and FM Nicholas Croad(2271) share the lead in
the New Zealand Championship in Auckland with 6.5/7

Leading final scores in the NSW Junior League's Summer Three-Day Tournament
(75 players,9 rounds) Bernard Chau 9,Joshua Lau 7.5,Clive Ng and Cedric Koh
7. The Junior League will hold a one-day tournament this Wednesday and a
two-day tournament the following Wednesday and Thursday. Enquiries Richard
Gastineau-ills phone 9412 4579 or see www.nswjcl.org.au.

The World Teams Championship(Russia 2729,Azerbaijan 2718,Armenia 2697,Israel
2686,USA 2658,India 2641 etc - Ukraine and China are not competing) is in
progress in Bursa,Turkey. Greece upset Russia 2.5-1.5 in round 2
(Papaioannou 2625 and Banikas 2608 beat Morozevich 2732 and Tomashevsky
2705). Nakamura(USA) has 3.5/4 on board 1 and Onischuk(USA) 4.5/5 on board
2. Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (AZE 2719) has scored 5/5 on board four. Ranking
after 5 rounds - Russia, USA 8/10, Armenia,India 7, Azerbaijan and Israel 6.

Ikeda is Lightning Champion
Peter Parr (8/1/10)

Eighteen-year-old Junta Ikeda of Canberra is the new Australian Lightning
Chess Champion. Leading final scores(88 players,11 rounds) - GM Gawain Jones
(ENG) 9.5 (lost to Ikeda,drew with IM Solomon),Junta Ikeda (ACT) and
Moulthun Ly(QLD) 9 (nine wins and two losses each), Nathan Pearce,FM Jesse
Sales,Max Illingworth(all NSW) 8. Grandmaster Jones was not eligible for the
title and the result of the play-off match for the Australian Lightning
Title  was Ikeda 2 v Ly 0.

Five-time Australian Champion 50-year-old GM Darryl Johansen lost to the top
seed 23-year-old GM Zong-Yuan Zhao in a very complicated game in the fourth
round of the Australian Championship at Norths,Cammeray,Sydney.  GM
D.Johansen 2443 v GM Zong-Yuan Zhao 2572 1 Nf3 Nf6 2 c4 e6 3 d4 c5 4 d5 d6 5
Nc3 exd5 6 cxd5 g6 7 e4 a6 8 h3 b5 9 Bd3 Bg7 10 0-0 0-0 11 a3 Re8 12 Re1 Bb7
13 Bf4 Qb6 14 b4 Nbd7 15 Qd2 Rac8 16 Rac1 Nh5 17 Bg5 Ne5 18 Nxe5 Bxe5 19 Be3
Nf6 20 Ne2 Nd7 21 f4 Bg7 22 Ng3 Qd8 23 Qf2 Qh4 24 Kh2 h5 25 Re2 c4 26 Bb1 a5
27 bxa5 Qd8 28 Bd4 Bxd4 29 Qxd4 Nc5 30 Rc3 h4 31 Nf1 Nb3 32 Qf2 Qf6 33 Rce3
c3 34 Rc2 Rc5 35 Ba2 Nd4 36 Rcxc3 Rxc3 37 Rxc3 Rxe4 38 Rd3 Rxf4 39 Qe3 b4 40
Nd2 Ba6 41 Ne4 Rxe4 42 Qxe4 Bxd3 43 Qxd3 Qe5+ 44 Kg1 Qe1+ 45 Kh2 Nf5 46 axb4
Ne3 0-1

The four teenagers on boards 2-5 lost to their more experienced opponents.
IM George Xie defeated Yi Yuan to reach 4/4 and has excellent chances of
scoring another grandmaster norm(2600+ result). IM Gary Lane beat FM Gene
Nakauchi in a tricky queen and rook endgame.

Lightning experts Jones and Ikeda met in round 4 with GM Jones winning
tactically.  GM G.Jones 2561 v J.Ikeda 2275 1 d4 b5 2 e4 a6 3 Bd3 Bb7 4 Qe2
e6 5 Be3 Nf6 6 Nd2 d6 7 a4 b4 8 a5 d5 9 e5 Nfd7 10 f4 c5 11 c3 g6 12 h4 Nc6
13 h5 Rg8 14 Nh3 bxc3 15 bxc3 cxd4 16 cxd4 Nb4 17 Ng5 Qc7 18 Rd1 Qc3 19 Bb1
Bc6 20 Kf2 Bb5 21 Qg4 Nc5 22 Nxh7 Ncd3+ 23 Kg3 Be7 24 Nf3 g5 25 fxg5 Nxe5 26
dxe5 Qxe3 27 Nf6+ Bxf6 28 exf6 Be2 29 Qxb4 Rxg5+ 30 Kh4 Rxh5+ 31 Kxh5 0-0-0
32 Rc1+ Bc4 33 Rxc4+ dxc4 34 Qxc4+ Kb8 35 Qb4+ Kc8 36 Ng5 Rg8 37 Nxf7 Rxg2
38 Nd6+ 1-0

The defending champion Stephen Solomon,the Australian Open Champion Aleks
Wohl and three-time winner 68-year-old veteran(and oldest player in the
title event) Douglas Hamilton all won their fourth round games.

Leading results in round 4 - GM D.Johansen(VIC 2453) 0 v GM Z.Zhao(NSW 2572)
1, Y.Yuan(ACT 2129) 0 v G.Xie(NSW 2448) 1, GM G.Jones (ENG 2561) 1 v
J.Ikeda(ACT 2275) 0 , IM G.Lane (NSW 2377) 1 v  FM G.Nakauchi(QLD 2081) 0,IM
S.Solomon(QLD 2428) 1 v  FM T.Rej (NSW 2364) 0, M.Illingworth(NSW 2248) 1 v
FM J.Morris(QLD 2305) 0.  Leading scores(28 players,11 rounds) Z.Zhao,G.Xie
4/4,D.Johansen,G.Jones,V.Smirnov,G.Lane 3  Y.Yuan,S.Solomon,M.Illingworth
2.5. Leaders in supporting events are -  Major (95 players from 10
countries) - Chong Chor Yuen (Hong Kong) and David Garner(England) 4/4.
Minor (42 players) - Shane Dibley (NSW) 4/4,Mark Stokes(QLD) 3.5   Norths
Classic(20 players) - Victor Liuga (NSW) 4/4.

Games commence daily at 11am at Norths,Cammeray,Sydney (last round next
Wednesday)with expert live commentary by Grandmaster Ian Rogers for
interested spectators. The leading six games running on electronic digital
boards can be viewed live each day at www.australianchesschampionship.com.
International Master Anthony Ker is the sole leader with 4.5/5 in the 117th
New Zealand Championship in Auckland.


Three Leaders in Australian Championship

Peter Parr (6/1/10)

Grandmasters Zong Yuan Zhao,Darryl Johansen and International Master George
Xie are the three early leaders with three wins each after three rounds of
the Australian Championship at Norths,Cammeray,Sydney. Zhao,the top seed,was
in considerable difficulties against former Commonwealth Champion IM Gary
Lane in round two but fought his way back to win.

GM Gawain Jones beat FM Vladimir Smirnov who played poorly in the opening.
Australian Open Champion Aleks Wohl seemed destined for victory with a
phalanx of four pawns for a knight but Canberra junior eighteen-year-old
Junta Ikeda remained cool under pressure and won. GM Darryl Johansen, five
times Champion of Australia sacrificed a pawn for better development in the
following game resulting in a crushing victory

D.Johansen 2453 v T.Rej 2364 A 35 1 c4 c5 2 Nc3 Nc6 3 Nf3 e5 4 e3 d6 5 d4
exd4 6 exd4 Bg4 7 Be2 Bxf3 8 Bxf3 Nxd4 9 0-0 Qd7 10 Be3 Nxf3+ 11 Qxf3 Nf6 12
Rad1 Qc6 13 Qf5 Be7 14 Rfe1 0-0 15 Bh6 Bd8 16 Qg5 Ne8 17 Qg3 Bf6 18 Nd5 Kh8
19 Nxf6 gxh6 20 Qf4 d5 21 Rxe8 1-0 (threat Qxh6). IM George Xie won a bishop
and pawn endgame against IM Vladimir Feldman. IM Stephen Solomon,the
defending champion,was outplayed and lost to seventeen-year-old Andrew

Zhao and Johansen put in grandmaster performances to beat Ikeda and Brown
respectively in round three. George Xie who excels in complex tactical
positions beat second seed GM Jones
G.Xie 2448 v G.Jones 2561 1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Nc3 Nf6 4 Bb5 Bb4 5 0-0 0-0 6
d3 d6 7 Bg5 Bxc3 8 bxc3 Ne7 9 Nh4 Ne8 10 Bc4 Kh8 11 f4 f6 12 fxe5 dxe5 13
Be3 Nd6 14 Bb3 b6 15 d4 exd4 16 cxd4 Nxe4 17 Qd3 Bb7 18 Rae1 Qd7 19 Bc1 f5
20 Ba3 (the threat of 21 Bxe7 Qxe7 22 Ng6+ hxg6 23 Qh3+ Qh4 24 Qxh4 mate is
hard to meet) Rf6 21 Bxe7 Qxe7 22 Nxf5 Qd7 23 Rxe4 Bxe4 24 Qxe4 Re8 25 Qd3
Ref8 26 Ng3 Rxf1+ 27 Nxf1 Qg4 28 h3 Qf4 29 Nd2 Qf2+ 30 Kh2 Re8 31 Nc4 Qf4+
32 Qg3 Qxd4 33 Qxc7 h6 34 Qg3 Qa1 35 Ne3 Qd4 36 Nf5 Qa1 37 c3 g5 38 Qc7 1-0

Another Canberra junior fourteen-year-old Yi Yuan beat Wohl and is the only
player on 2.5/3 half a point behind the leaders. Fifteen-year-old James
Morris had a far superior position in the middlegame against IM Solomon and
reached a winning rook and pawn ending. Morris played too quickly and made
several important mistakes and the Australian Champion who is well known for
his resourceful endgame technique played actively to secure a draw.

There are 28 participants in the title event restricted to the leading
players. A total of 187 players from all states and territories as well as
from overseas are competing in the championship and three supporting
tournaments with players ranging in age from eight to eighty-five.

Games commence daily at 11am with round four this afternoon (Wednesday) -
Johansen(3) v Zhao(3),Yuan(2.5) v Xie(3),Jones(2) v Ikeda(2),Brown(2) v
Smirnov(2),Lane(2) v Nakauchi(2) etc and the eleventh and last round next
Wednesday 13th January.

Spectators are most welcome at the venue where grandmaster Ian Rogers is
commentating and the leading six games each day can be viewed live at
www.australianchesschampionship.com. IM Anthony Ker and Michael Steadman
lead the 28 player New Zealand Championship with three out of three.


Norths Australian Championships
Peter Parr (4/1/10)

The Norths(Cammeray,Sydney) chess club second centenary Australian
Championships were opened on Saturday afternoon by Hon Jillian Skinner MLA
Member for North Shore and Hon Gladys Berejiklian MLA Member for Willoughby.
Norths chess club president Paul Glissan welcomed the 187 players in four

Eleven former Australian Junior Champions from the last 50 years were
present - Lay 1960,Fuller 63,Rogers 76,Johansen 77,Kerr 79,Solomon
80,Broekhuyse 82,Zhao 2001,Rej 03,Ly 05,Ikeda 08. Peter Lay is a Norths
player as was Lajos Steiner when he was Australian Champion 50 years ago.
Norths stalwart Phillip Viner's father was Australian Champion 100 years
ago. Grandmasters Zong Yuan Zhao and Gawain Jones are the two clear
favorites in this 2010 Championship.

Leading results round 1 (28 players including 3 GM 6 IM 5 FM ,11 rounds) -
the top nine seeds all won - GM Z.Zhao(NSW 2572) 1 M.Illingworth(NSW 2248)
0,C.Wallis (VIC 2246) 0 GM G.Jones(ENG 2561) 1,IM A.Wohl(NSW 2458) 1 FM
D.Hamilton(VIC 2193) 0,A.Bird(NSW 2182) 0 GM D.Johansen(VIC 2453) 1,IM G.Xie
(NSW 2448) 1 B.Atzmon-Simon (NSW 2182) 0,G.Charles(NSW 2175) 0 IM
S.Solomon(QLD 2428) 1,V.Smirnov(NSW 2392) 1 E.Schon (VIC 2167) 0, M.Pyke(VIC
2164) 0 IM G.Lane(NSW 2377) 1,FM T.Rej (NSW 2364) 1 B.Lazarus(QLD 2162) 0.

Z.Zhao 2572 v M.Illingworth 2248 1 e4 c5 Nf3 e6 3 c3 Ne7 4 d4 cxd 5 cxd d5
6 e5 N(b8)c6 7 a3 Nf5 8 b4 Qb6 9 Be3 Be7 10 Bd3 Nxe3 11 fxe Bd7 12 0-0 Rc8
13 Qe1 f6 14 Nc3 fxe5 15 b5! exd4 16 bxc6 Qxc6 17 Nb5 Qb6 18 N(b5)xd4 Bf6 19
Rb1 Qc7 20 Qb4 a6 21 Qxb7 Qc5 22 Bxa6 e5 23 Bb5 Bxb5 24 Rxb5 Qc3 25 Nf5 1-0.
The major supporting event has 95 players from 10 countries.

Sydney Junior Max Illingworth won the final Grand Prix event - The 83 player
Canterbury Summer Swiss in Melbourne scoring 6/7 half a point ahead of
I.Dyment,D.Dragicevic and L.Kempen.
Leading final scores in the 2009 Yulgilbar-Think Big Australian Grand Prix
1st GM D.Smerdon(ACT),2nd IM S.Solomon(QLD,Australian Champion),3rd GM
G.Jones(ENG),4th M.Illingworth(NSW),5th
IM G.Xie(NSW). Women's and Girls E.Guo(ACT),Under 2000 E.Shon(VIC),Under
1600 A.Pan(NSW)

Leading Australians on the Jan 2010 World Rating List - GM Z.Zhao 2572,GM
D.Smerdon 2530,IM A.Wohl 2458,GM D.Johansen 2453,IM G.Xie 2448,IM S.Solomon
2428. Women IM I.Berezina 2239,WIM A.Caoili 2235. Nineteen-year-old Magnus
Carlsen is the youngest player to top the World Rankings - M.Carlsen NOR
2810,V.Topalov BUL 2805,V.Anand IND 2790,V.Kramnik RUS 2788,L.Aronian ARM
2781,B.Gelfand ISR 2761. Women - J.Polgar HUN 2682,H.Koneru IND 2614,Y.Hou
CHN 2590.

Alexander Grischuk (World Blitz Champion 2006) has won the Russian
Championship in Moscow with a 2851 performance rating. Leading final
scores(10 players,9 rounds) A.Grischuk (2736) 6.5,
P.Svidler(2754) 6,N.Vitiugov(2694) 5,E.Alekseev(2715),D.Jakovenko(2736) 4.5.
Alisa Galliamova(Winner of the World Girls in Adelaide 1988) won the Russian
Women's title scoring 7.5/9 half a point ahead of Nadezhda Kosintseva.

Thirteen-year-old Ukrainian schoolboy Ilya Nyzhnyk demolished the field in
the A Group Open Section in Groningen,Netherlands. He scored 7.5/9 in the 64
player event for a 2741 performance rating. Grandmasters Jan Werle and
Dimitri Reinderman tied for second on 6.5 points.

The Sydney Morning Herald will publish regular extra chess columns to cover
the Australian Championships 2-13 January.