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Tuesday, September 17, 2013

World Junior Chess Round 4: Gujrathi, Sethuraman in Joint Second Place

Kocaeli, Turkey, September 16: Indian Grandmasters Vidit Gujrathi and S P Sethuraman registered victories to jump to joint second spot on 3.5 points after the end of the fourth round of World Junior Chess Championship.

While Gujrathi outclassed Jurab Javakhadze of Georgia, Sethuraman got the better of Vahe Baghdasaryan of Armenia in their fourth round encounters.

On what turned out to be a good day for the Indian boys, Gujrathi made most of the opportunities in a complex game against Javakhadze from the black side of an irregular opening.

Getting his knight posted in the centre of the board, Gujrathi exerted pressure and the Georgian did not have a chance.

Sethuraman also fought for the blood out of a Semi-Slav defence and won a pawn with precise calculations. The technicalities were far from easy but the Indian made them look like child's play when his two passed pawns marched down in the ensuing Bishops and pawns endgame.

The other Indian Grandmaster in the fray, Sahaj Grover also scored a fluent victory over Benjamin Arvola of Norway.

Playing the white side of a Nimzo Indian defence, Grover made early inroads in black's position with some finely crafted manoeuvres in the middle game.

Arvola could not resist for long as the pressure mounted on the queen side resulting in a loss of piece for the Norwegian. The game lasted just 25 moves and Grover took his tally to three points out of a possible four.

Top seed Yu Yangyi of China emerged as the sole leader after scoring his fourth victory on the trot. On the receiving end was A R Saleh Salem of UAE who was outdone in a Scotch opening game.

With Yangyi in front, as many as eight players are in close pursuit half a point behind including Gujrathi and Sethuraman.

Grover and Debashish Das are both on three points after the latter was held to a draw by Muhammad Luthfi Ali of Indonesia.

Meanwhile, G K Monnisha continued with her winning ways and defeated Sarasadat Khademalsharieh of Iran. The victory helped the Indian girl jump to joint lead with six others on 3.5 points in the girls section being played simultaneously.

Padmini Rout continued with her comeback attempt at the expense of compatriot Ivana Maria Furtado. Ivana played aggressively but met with some perfect defence that proved decisive in the end.

Rucha Pujari, J Saranya and Anjana Krishna ended on the winning side while Shristi Shetty and Riya Sawant lost their respective fourth round games.

Nine rounds still remain in the premier event for the under-20 players in the world.

Important and Indian results after round 4: (Indians unless stated): Yu Yangyi (CHN, 4) beat A R Salem Saleh (UAE, 3); Duda Jan-Krzysztof (POL, 3.5) drew with Alexander Ipatov (TUR, 3.5); Tamas Petenyi (SVK, 3.5) beat Nils Grandelius (SWE, 2.5): Jurab Javakhadze (GEO, 2.5) lost to Vidit Gujrathi (3.5); S P Sethuraman (3.5) beat Vahe Baghdasaryan (ARM, 2.5); Urii Eliseev (RUS, 3.5) beat Bai Jinshi (CHN, 2.5); Nasanjargal Urtnasan (MGL, 2.5) lost to Andrey Stukopin (RUS, 3.5); Debashis Das (3) drew with Muhammad Luthfi Ali (INA, 2.5); Sahaj Grover (3) beat Benjamin Arvola (NOR, 2); Jerad Docena (PHI, 2.5) drew with S L Narayanan (2.5); N Srinath (2.5) beat Uysal Burak (TUR, 2); Kutay Yargici Mazhar (TUR, 2) beat Sameer Kathmale (1); Rakesh Kulkarni (0.5) lost to Kitir Ahmet (TUR, 1.5).

Girls: Aleksandra Goryachkina (RUS, 3.5) drew with Zhai Mo (CHN, 3.5); Aulia Medina Warda (INA, 3.5) drew with Wang Jue (CHN, 3); Alina Kashlinskaya (RUS, 3.5) beat Zhansaya Abdumalik (KAZ, 2.5); Andrea Paula Rodriguez Rueda (COL, 3) drew with Deysi Cori (PER, 3); Irina Bulmaga (ROU, 3.5) beat Nguyen Thi Mai Hung (VIE, 2.5); G K Monnisha (3.5) beat Sarasadat Khademalsharieh (IRI, 2.5); Ivana Maria Furtado (2) lost to Padmini Rout (3);Barbara Racki (CRO, 1.5) lost to Rucha Pujari (2.5); Seda Alev Gonulden (TUR, 1.5) lost to J Saranya (2.5); Ana Kuchava (GEO, 2.5) beat Shristi Shetty (1.5); Liu Hongyan (CHN, 1) lost to Anjana Krishna (2); Riya Savant (1) lost to Shyngys Kyzy Aijarkyn (KGZ, 2). --PTI

Carlsen's 2966 Show @ Sinquefield Chess vs Kamsky, Naka, Aronian

World's Best Wins Strongest Chess Tournament in U.S. History
Norwegian Grandmaster Magnus Carlsen wins the inaugural Sinquefield Cup in Saint Louis

SAINT LOUIS, Sept. 16, 2013: The Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis (CCSCSL) crowned Grandmaster Magnus Carlsen, 22, of Norway, the champion of the inaugural Sinquefield Cup, the strongest chess tournament in U.S. history. Carlsen is the No. 1 chess player in the world and the first-place finish in the tournament netted him $70,000.

This prestigious event was Carlsen's first-ever appearance at a tournament in the U.S., and his last before he challenges Viswanathan Anand of India in November for the World Championship title. He finished a full point ahead of Hikaru Nakamura, 25, of Saint Louis, who is ranked No. 1 in the U.S. and No. 5 in the world.

"The final margin of victory was a little flattering," Carlsen said at a press conference following the event. "I think I will enjoy some rest over the next couple of weeks. Then I'll have a pretty long training session, and go to India."

Carlsen holds the record as the highest-rated player in chess history. He was named one of TIMEmagazine's 100 most influential people of 2013 and has been the highest-rated player on the planet since he was 19.

Carlsen beat out three of top-ranked chess players in the world including Nakamura, World No. 2 Levon Aronian, 30, of Armenia, and U.S. No. 2 Gata Kamsky, 39, of Brooklyn. Nakamura earned $50,000 for second place, Aronian took home $30,000 and Kamsky netted $20,000 for his last-place finish.

CCSCSL Executive Director Tony Rich said this event marks an important milestone for U.S. chess.

"Bringing the world's best to Saint Louis is yet another sign that the U.S. is becoming a major player in the world chess scene," Rich said. "It also further establishes Saint Louis as the epicenter of chess in the United States."

Also Read: 

Monday, September 16, 2013

World Junior Chess: Mixed Results for Indians in Kocaeli, Turkey

Kocaeli, Turkey, September 16: Grandmaster Vidit Gujrathi played out a fighting draw with Bai Jinshi of China, while GM Sahaj Grover lost to defending champion Alexander Ipatov of Turkey in the third round of World Junior chess championship here.

It was an English opening by Gujrathi that did not promise much hope in the middle game even as Jinshi exchanged off pieces at regular intervals to retain the parity. The players arrived at a queen and pawns endgame where the draw was a just result after 38 moves.

A faulty variation in the Queen’s gambit cost Sahaj Grover dearly as he was outdone in quick time by Ipatov.

Playing black, Sahaj made an error in the opening to allow a dangerous king side attack. Known for his fondness for attack, Ipatov pounced on the chance and reached a winning endgame that was easy to convert.

The other Indian Grandmaster in the fray – S.P. Sethuraman - made amends for his draw in the previous round and outplayed Ayan Akhmetov of Kazakhstan. A sacrifice in the middle game by Sethuraman led to a winning position.

With ten rounds still to go, Yu Yangyi of China, A.R. Salem Saleh of UAE, Duda Jan-Krzysztof of Poland and Ipatov emerged as joint leaders with a perfect score.

Sethuraman, Gujrathi and Grandmaster-in-waiting Debashish Das are among those who have 2.5 points each, while Grover and S.L. Narayanan are another half a point adrift.

Among other Indians in the fray, S.L. Narayanan defeated Temur Igonin of Uzbekistan while Das overpowered Saiyn Zhanat of Turkey. Rakesh Kulkarni and Sameer Kathmale ended on the losing side against Jorge Cori of Peru and Temizkan Denizcan of Turkey, respectively.

In the girls’ championship being played simultaneously, G.K. Monnisha continued with her excellent run to beat Mitra Hejazipour of Iran and took her tally to 2.5 points. -- PTI

Grischuk Wins ACP Chess Rapid Knockout 2013 in Riga

Grandmaster Alexander Grischuk of Russia has won the fifth edition of the ACP Rapid Knockout Cup - 2013 in Riga, Latvia. The final match Grischuk-Nepomniachtchi reached the Armageddon stage, after the players drew both rapid games after exciting fight, and later exchanged the victories in the blitz games. In the final game, Grischuk gained an advantage in the opening, and emerged victorious.

Ian Nepomniachtchi plays 44. ...Kf4. Grischuk went for 45. QxRg7. Can you see a spot another great continuation for Grischuk?

Grischuk, Alexander - Nepomniachtchi, Ian

Result: 1-0
Site: Riga
Date: 2013.09.15
[...] 1.d4 ♘f6 2.c4 g6 3.♘f3 ♗g7 4.e3 O-O 5.♗e2 d5 6.cxd5 ♘xd5 7.e4 ♘b6 8.O-O ♗g4 9.♘bd2 ♘c6 10.d5 ♘b8 11.a4 c6 12.a5 ♘6d7 13.h3 ♗xf3 14.♘xf3 ♘f6 15.♕b3 ♕c8 16.♗g5 ♘xe4 17.♗xe7 ♖e8 18.d6 ♘xd6 19.♗xd6 ♖xe2 20.♘g5 ♕d7 21.♖ae1 ♖xb2 22.♕c4 ♘a6 23.♖e7 ♕f5 24.♖xf7 ♕d5 25.♖xg7+ ♔xg7 26.♕c3+ ♔g8 27.♕xb2 ♕xd6 28.♕xb7 ♘c7 29.♘e4 ♕e5 30.♕xc6 ♖f8 31.♕c4+ ♔g7 32.♖d1 ♖f7 33.♘c5 h5 34.f3 ♕e3+ 35.♔h1 ♕f2 36.♕c3+ ♔h7 37.♖d8 ♖g7 38.♘e4 ♕f1+ 39.♔h2 ♕b5 40.♘f6+ ♔h6 41.♖h8+ ♔g5 42.♘e4+ ♔f4 43.♕xg7
43.g3+ ♔f5 44.♕f6# (0:00:00),42...Kf4 Yes it's checkmate in two! But any way, Grischuk is winning all the way since quite some time.
43...♘d5 44.♕d4 and Nepomniachtchi resigned!

Earlier, Grischuk knocked out Peter Svidler and Nepomniachtchi knocked out Ponomariov in the semi-finals. The final match was commented jointly by Grandmasters Alexei Shirov (who was replaced by GM Artur Neiksans during the tie-break) and Emil Sutovsky. All the photos and videos are available on the official website: The ACP Cup was organised by the Association of Chess Professionals together with the Latvian Chess Federation. The venue for the tournament is provided by Rietumu Bank, which has one of the best premises in Riga for hosting exhibitions, auctions and other cultural and intellectual events. The bank is also participating in the financing of the tournament.

The Association of Chess Professionals (ACP) is a not-for-profit organisation, whose main purpose is the protection of chess professionals’ rights and the practice and promotion of chess worldwide, in particular through the organisation of chess tournaments and other chess events. (All photos by Lennart Ootes).

* ACP Rapid Chess in Riga: Spectacular Knockout with 16 Fighters Sept 13-15
* ACP Rapid Chess Riga Day 1: Three Easy Knockout Punches to Enjoy

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Exciting ACO World Amateur Chess Championship 2014 in Rhodes

Do you love chess and can play it well? Even if you're caught up in your profession the year round, this is one chess tournament that you would hate to miss. You can become a world chess champion (in your category) as well! By now already more than 180 players have registered. 
Save your Early Bird offer till 15 September 2013! 
After that date the prices will increase by 50 EUR per person! The last edition was booked out already several months prior to the start of the tournament,
therefore an early decision is recommended.

Through this link you can find all information in PDF format:

ACP Rapid Chess Riga Day 1: Three Easy Knockout Punches to Enjoy

There was exciting chess on the first day of the ACP Rapid Chess Cup in the art gallery of Rietumu Bank in Riga. The live commentary was followed by local chess fans and thousands of spectators online at the official website.

Here are the results:
Grischuk - Fressinet : 3:1 (on the blitz tie-break)
Mamedyarov-Kovalenko: 1.5:0.5
Nepomniachtchi - Moiseenko: 1.5:0.5
Svidler - Jakovenko : 1.5:0.5
Radjabov - Shirov : 1.5:0.5
Malakhov - Eljanov : 1.5:0.5
Ponomariov - Morozevich: 1.5:0.5
Wojtaszek - Ivanchuk : 1.5:0.5

Photos: Lennart Ootes

Saturday pairings for the 1/4 final:
Click to WATCH LIVE India 4.30 pm

Grishuk - Wojtaszek (at 14:00 Riga time = 13:00 CET)
Mamedyarov - Ponomariov (18:00 Riga time = 17:00 CET)
Nepomniachtchi - Malakhov (18:00 Riga time = 17:00 CET)
Svidler- Radjabov (14:00 Riga time = 13:00 CET)

*India is 2 1/2 hours ahead of Riga

Here are three knockout punches to enjoy from Day 1 at the ACP Rapid Chess Cup

Svidler - Jakovenko 1-0
Black just played 53... Rf5. Why is that a blunder?

Ivanchuk - Wojtaszek 0-1
Black just attacked the White Rook on e1 with Bc3. White saved the Rook to e2. Was that correct?

Kovalenko - Mamedyarov 0-1
White has resigned in a well-known position. Do you know how to win from here?

A: 1.Ke4+ Ke6 forced protecting Rook 2.Rd6 winning
B: Even though White is in a squeeze, Re2 loses immediately as the Knight on d3 goes. Better would have been Rd1. The game progressed 1.Re2 f5 2.Bf3 Qxd3
C: You don't even need to struggle with the Lucena position in this as Black just needs to keep the White King cut off and take the King down to the support of the g-pawn and roll it down to Queen.

Yes, it's all about the basics! You can do it too with your chess!
- Zainab Raza Undulusi

What's Carlsen Doing in St Louis?

The strongest chess tournament in US history, the Sinquefield Cup, is underway in Saint Louis. World's top two Grandmasters are locked in battle with America's top two Grandmasters. The players are  Hikaru Nakamura, Gata Kamsky, Levon Aronian and Magnus Carlsen. Here is a curtainraiser video with former American women's chess champion, Jennifer Shahade.

Friday, September 13, 2013

ACP Rapid Chess in Riga: Spectacular Knockout with 16 Fighters Sept 13-15

We have an extended weekend of some spectacular chess coming up! Beginning Friday, 16 of the world's best chess fighters will go after a haul of $75,000 at the ACP Chess Cup 2013 in Riga, Latvia. The format is an exciting knockout one with time controls of two games of 25 minutes each (increment 10 seconds).

7 Vesetas St., Riga, LV-1013
ACP Chess Cup Live India Time at official website: India time 4.30 pm. 

The Association of Chess Professionals, along with the Latvian Chess Society, is holding the event in Riga, Latvia, from September 12 to 15. The opening ceremony was held Thursday evening, so the games begin Friday. Who would you like to put your chips on (listed according to rapid rating order)?

Blitz Specialist: Alexander Grischuk - With his chess play endorsed by none other than the legendary Garry Kasparov, this Russian Grandmaster can easily call himself a blitz specialist. He has won the Chess World Blitz Championship twice (2006, 2012) and, at one time, had the highest blitz rating on the Internet Chess Club. 
Federation: Russia
Birth Date: October 31, 1983
Birth Place: Moscow, Russia
Residence: Moscow, Russia / Odessa, Ukraine
Title: Grandmaster since 2000
World ranking: 4
FIDE Rating: 2785
World Rapid ranking: 2
FIDE Rapid Rating: 2830

Aggressive Sharp-Shooter: Shakhriyar Mamedyarov - The reigning Chess World Rapid Champion is a sharpshooter who virtually ran away with the crown scoring 11.5 out of 15 in Khanty Mansiysk in June this year. He's aggressive, has strong instincts and is daring enough to innovate in the openings. 
Federation: Azerbaijan
Birth Date: April 12, 1985
Birth Place: Sumgayit, Azerbaijan
Residence: Sumgayit, Azerbaijan
Title: Grandmaster since 2002
World ranking: 7
FIDE Rating: 2775
World Rapid ranking: 4
FIDE Rapid Rating: 2822

Wolf Incognito: Ian Nepomniachtchi - Another of those young Grandmasters brought up in the rich traditions of Russian chess, don't go by his animated conversations and sweet looks. Given the chance, he devours the enemy with relish. Former European and Russian champion he has also worked with World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen. 
Federation: Russia
Birth Date: July 14, 1990
Birth Place: Bryansk, Russia
Residence: Moscow, Russia
Title: Grandmaster since 2007
World ranking: 29
FIDE Rating: 2717
World Rapid ranking: 6
FIDE Rapid Rating: 2804

Petersburg's Hard-Hitter: Peter Svidler - The six-time Russian champion plays chess like Sachin Tendulkar bats. He even uses the handle Tendulkar on the Internet Chess Club. Svidler is a Chess960 specialist who can play any endgame - the most recent and spotlight hogging one being the destruction of Magnus Carlsen at the London Chess Candidates 2013 in the last round. When in form, Svidler only hits sixes.... er.. checkmates.
Federation: Russia
Birth Date: June 17, 1976
Birth Place: Saint Petersburg, Russia
Residence: Saint Petersburg, Russia
Title: Grandmaster since 1994
World ranking: 15
FIDE Rating: 2746
World Rapid ranking: 10

FIDE Rapid Rating: 2761

Pawn Squeezer: Teimour Radjabov - A King's Indian expert, the youngster from Baku who, in Linares 2003, not yet 16 years old, became the first player in seven years to beat the legendary Garry Kasparov with the black pieces in a rated game, a feat no one repeated before Kasparov's retirement two years later. He's also an ACP Rapid Cup from Odessa, 2008. He knows how to squeeze out a win after capitalizing on minor advantages. 
Federation: Azerbaijan
Birth Date: March 12, 1987
Birth Place: Baku, Azerbaijan
Residence: Baku, Azerbaijan
Title: Grandmaster since 2001
World ranking: 21
FIDE Rating: 2733
World Rapid ranking: 11
FIDE Rapid Rating: 2760

Nuke Button: Vladimir Malakhov - The nuclear physicist-turned-chess player brings the same meticulous calculation and deep study to the chess board as to his earlier profession. Give this Russian a chance, and he will finish you mercilessly. He's the button on a nuclear warship, just don't press.
Federation: Azerbaijan

Birth Date: March 12, 1987
Birth Place: Baku, Azerbaijan
Residence: Baku, Azerbaijan
Title: Grandmaster since 2001
World ranking: 21
FIDE Rating: 2733
World Rapid ranking: 11
FIDE Rapid Rating: 2760

Complicated Chameleon: Alexander Morozevich - Confuse them first then kill them! This Russian talent likes to complicate even simple positions much to the chagrin of his opponents. He dares use even the most unpopular openings in top-level chess without any fear of defeat. A difficult opponent to prepare in battle for, Morozevich is the powerhouse that went up to be World No. 2 at one time. He enjoys gambits and is a Chigorin Defense specialist.
Federation: Russia
Birth Date: July 18, 1977
Birth Place: Moscow, Russia
Residence: Moscow, Russia
Title: Grandmaster since 1994
World ranking: 18
FIDE Rating: 2739
World Rapid ranking: 16
FIDE Rapid Rating: 2742

Anand Ally: Radoslaw Wojtaszek - He has been one of the four seconds to World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand since his successful title defence match against Vladimir Kramnik in October 2008, also assisting him in defending his title in April–May 2010 against Veselin Topalov and in May 2012 against Boris Gelfand. No one is going to take him lightly what with his access to the World Champion's dossier.
Federation: Poland
Birth Date: January 13, 1987
Birth Place: Elbląg, Poland
Residence: Elbląg, Poland
Title: Grandmaster since 2005
World ranking: 47
FIDE Rating: 2701
World Rapid ranking: 19
FIDE Rapid Rating: 2735

Unpredictable Alter-Ego: Vassily Ivanchuk - Possibly the most unpredictable Grandmaster in the world. He can lose easily, or beat even the strongest... specifically the likes of Carlsen and Kramnik. If it were not for Ivanchuk's exploits at the London Chess Classic this year, Viswanathan Anand might as well be defending his crown against someone else instead of Carlsen. You never know which Ivanchuk will show up at the board: The killer, or the killed! Either way, you know he's going to affect the final standings.
Federation: Ukraine
Birth Date: March 18, 1969
Birth Place: Kopychyntsi, Ukraine
Residence: Lviv, Ukraine
Title: Grandmaster since 1988
World ranking: 22FIDE Rating: 2731
World Rapid ranking: 24
FIDE Rapid Rating: 2725

Attacking Tiger: Ruslan Ponomariov - A former FIDE World Chess Champion, his opening repertoire is an attacking one. An attacking tiger, Ponomariov goes into battle all cylinders firing. This youngest Grandmaster in the world at one time, never hesitates to experiment. 
Federation: Ukraine
Birth Date: October 11, 1983
Birth Place: Horlivka, Ukrainian
Residence: Kiev, Ukraine
Title: Grandmaster since 1998
World ranking: 14
FIDE Rating: 2756
World Rapid ranking: 25

Hard-nut-to-Crack GM: Pavel Eljanov -  A steady player who relishes positional chess and savours creative combinations, Pavel Eljanov has made steady progress up the FIDE world rankings, and on the September 2010 FIDE Elo rating list, Eljanov had a rating of 2761, making him number 1 in Ukraine and number 6 in the world. In May 2010, he won the Astrakhan FIDE Grand Prix with a score of 8/13. He's going to be a hard nut to crack at the ACP event.
Federation: Ukraine
Birth Date: May 10, 1983
Birth Place: Kharkov, Ukraine
Residence: Kharkov, Ukraine
Title: Grandmaster since 2001
World ranking: 42
FIDE Rating: 2706
World Rapid ranking: 29
FIDE Rapid Rating: 2712

Home-Crowd Favourite: Alexei Shirov - Alexei Dmitrievich Shirov is a Soviet-born Latvian chess Grandmaster and the home crowd is going to be cheering for him for sure. He has consistently ranked among the world's top players since the early 1990s, and reached a ranking as high as number four in 1998. Shirov is also a well-regarded chess author. To him also the credit of helping bring the tournament to Riga.
Federation: Latvia
Birth Date: July 4, 1972
Birth Place: Riga, Latvia
Residence: Riga, Latvia
Title: Grandmaster since 1990
World ranking: 55
FIDE Rating: 2696
World Rapid ranking: 39
FIDE Rapid Rating: 2706

Stubborn Samurai: Laurent Fressinet -  As stubborn as they come. He's in the record books for playing the longest rapid chess game during a tournament in the world against 12th Women's World Chess Champion Alexandra Kosteniuk. A former French and European champion, he's recently rubbed shoulders and tossed pieces with World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen. He's armed to the teeth, in good form and raring to go.
Federation: France
Birth Date: November 1, 1981
Birth Place: Dax, France
Residence: Paris, France
Title: Grandmaster since 2000
World ranking: 38
FIDE Rating: 2708
World Rapid ranking: 46
FIDE Rapid Rating: 2690

Dark Horse: Dmitry Jakovenko -  This Russian Grandmaster has learned chess from Garry Kasparov's former trainer Alexander Nikitin. He's been the world u-18 champion and, at one time, was ranked number one in Russia ahead of Vladimir Kramnik. A believer in modern chess ideas built on traditional Russian chess theory, he could be the surprise horse to back in the ACP Cup race.
Federation: Russia
Birth Date: June 29, 1983
Birth Place: Omsk, Russia
Residence: Nizhnevartovsk and Moscow, Russia
Title: Grandmaster since 2001
World ranking: 23
FIDE Rating: 2724
World Rapid ranking: 53
FIDE Rapid Rating: 2678

Laser Precise: Alexander Moiseenko - Reigning European Chess Champion, this Grandmaster from Ukraine has a string of tournament victories to his credit from Istanbul to Edmonton to Montreal and more. He brings to the table laser precision in play and could be the nemesis of higher-rated players in Riga over the next two days. 
Federation: Ukraine
Birth Date: May 17, 1980
Birth Place: Severomorsk, Russia
Residence: Kharkov, Ukraine
Title: Grandmaster since 2000
World ranking: 41
FIDE Rating: 2706
World Rapid ranking: 63
FIDE Rapid Rating: 2669

Steel Solid: Igor Kovalenko - Another one for the home crowd, he's the reigning Latvia Chess Champion. He's known for his grounded, steady play without reckless risks. Being the last seed, everyone is likely to go after his throat, but he's "steel-throated considering" his careful and fast play. He has excellent nerves as well!
Federation: Latvia
Birth Date: December 29, 1988
Birth Place: Novomoskovsk, Ukraine
Residence: Riga, Latvia
Title: Grandmaster since 2011
World ranking: 117

FIDE Rating: 2644
World Rapid ranking: 128
FIDE Rapid Rating: 2633

The first round matches are split between two shifts.And so, the pairings are:

Afternoon shift (starts at 14:00 Riga time = 13:00 CET = India 16.30)

Mamedyarov - Kovalenko
Nepomniachtchi - Moiseenko
Malakhov - Eljanov
Wojtaczek - Ivanchuk

Evening shift (starts at 18:00 Riga time = 17:00 CET = India 20:30)

Grischuk - Fressinet
Svidler - Jakovenko
Radjabov - Shirov
Morozevich - Ponomariov

-- Zainab Raza Undulusi 
( Readers can also find some fun and interesting 
chess articles by this writer at our partner site


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