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The Week in Chess

  • Saint Louis Summer Chess Classic 2018 – Games and Results
    The Saint Louis Summer Chess Classic took place 15th-23rd May 2018. Two GM Groups. A Group: Durarbayli, Akobian, Sevian, Bok, Zherebukh, Indjic, Xiong, Prohaszka, Fridman and Jumabayev. Vasif Durarbayli won the a-group after beating Varuzhan Akobian 2-0 in a rapid tie-break after both finishing on 6/9. Kamil Dragun won the b-group.
  • 53rd Capablanca Memorial 2018 – Games and Results
    The 53rd Capablanca Memorial took place 9th-20th May 2018. Players: Samuel Shankland, Lazaro Bruzon Batista, Aleksey Dreev, David Anton Guijarro, Aleksandr Rakhmanov and Yusnel Bacallao Alonso. Sam Shankland followed up his US Chess Championship win with a comfortable win in the Capablanca Memorial.
  • FIDE Women’s World Chess Championship 2018 – Games and Results
    The FIDE Women’s World Chess Championship match between defending champion Tan Zhongyi and challenger Ju Wenjun took place 3rd to 20th May. 10 game match Both were born in 1991 and are close friends. The first half of the match was in the ”Intercontinental Hotel Puxi, near the historic centre of Shanghai”, May 3rd-10th. Then the match moved to Chongqing finishing on May 20th. Ju Wenjun won the match 5.5-4.5, she led 3.5-1.5 at the half way stage and after losing game 6 won the title by drawing the remaining games.
  • Russian Team Championships 2018 – Games and Results
    The Russian Team Championship took place in Soochi 1st to 10th May 2018. Leading players: Svidler, Vitiugov, Tomashevsky, Fedoseev, Artemiev, Matlakov, Dubov, Gelfand, Malakhov, Inarkiev, Rodshtein, Kamsky, Najer, Rublevsky, Riazantsev, Motylev, Shirov, Grachev, Khismatullin, Lysyj, Alekseenko, Zvjaginsev, Alekseev, Paravyan, Romanov, Bologan, Popov, Kobalia. Mednyy vsadnik (St Petersburg) won the Premier title and Yugra the women’s.
  • 24th Sigeman & Co 2018 – Games and Results
    24th Sigeman & Co Chess tournament took place Fri 4th to Tue 8th May 2018. Santosh Vidit Gujrathi and Nils Grandelius shared first on 3.5/5.
  • 4NCL 2017-18 – Games and Results
    The 4NCL took place 11th November 2017 to 7th May 2018. Guildford 1 won the title.
  • Bundesliga 2017-18 – Games and Results
    The German Bundesliga took place 21st October to 1st May 2018. Baden-Baden were defending champions and top seeds. The final weekend took place 29th April to 1st May 2018 in Berlin as part of the 150th birthday Celebrations of Emanuel Lasker organised by the club ”Schachfreunde Berlin 1903”. There was a special blitz tournament on the 28th April won by Tomashevsky. Baden Baden and Solingen tied on 27 points and there will be a playoff match for the title later in May. SK Schwaebisch Hall has announced it won’t play in the Bundesliga next year.
  • US Chess Championships 2018 – Games and Results
    The US Chess Championships took place in Saint Louis Wed 18th to Mon 30th Apr 2018.

    Championship players: Fabiano Caruana, Hikaru Nakamura, Wesley So, Alex Onischuk, Ray Robson, Sam Shankland, Varuzhan Akobian, Jeffery Xiong, Alex Lenderman, Awonder Liang, Yaroslav Zherebukh and Zviad Izoria.

    Women’s Championship: Irina Krush, Anna Zatonskih, Tatev Abrahamyan, Nazi Paikidze, Sabina Foisor, Jennifer Yu, Annie Wang, Maggie Feng, Anna Sharevich, Dorsa Derakhshani, Akshita Gorti and Rusudan Goletiani.

    Sam Shankland won his first title with the high score of 8.5/11 half a point clear of Fabiano Caruana who pushed him all the way after overpressing and losing to Zviad Izoria in round 4. Nazi Paikidze beat Annie Wang in an Armageddon tie-break playoff for the women’s title.

  • Chinese Championships 2018 – Games and Results
    The Chinese Championships took place in Xinghua Wed 18th Apr 2018 to Mon 30th Apr 2018. Wen Yang edged out Bai Jinshi on tie-break after both scored 7.5/11, in the women’s section Zhai Mo won the title on tie-break from Huang Qian, they both scored 8.5/11.
  • 5th Vugar Gashimov Memorial 2018 – Games and Results
    The 5th Vugar Gashimov Memorial took place in Shamkir 19th to 28th April 2018. Players: Magnus Carlsen, Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, Radoslaw Wojtaszek, Anish Giri, Ding Liren, Sergey Karjakin, Veselin Topalov, Teimour Radjabov, Rauf Mamedov and David Navara. World Champion Magnus Carlsen won the event with 6/9 half a point clear of Ding Liren.
  • 2nd Sharjah Masters 2018 – Games and Results
    The 2nd Sharjah Masters took place Wednesday 11th Apr to Thursday 19th Apr 2018. 17 year old Iranian GM Parham Maghsoodloo won with 8/9 a point clear of Eltaj Safarli and Wang Hao.
  • 19th European Women’s Championship 2018 – Games and Results
    The 19th European Women’s Championship took place Saturday 7th Apr to Friday 20th Apr 2018. Players: Mariya Muzychuk, Nino Batsiashvili, Nana Dzagnidze, Valentina Gunina, Aleksandra Goryachkina, Marie Sebag, Bela Khotenashvili, Antoaneta Stefanova, Natalija Pogonina, Pis Cramling, Monika Socko, Olga Girya, Elisabeth Paehtz etc. 4th seed Valentina Gunina scored 9/11 to win the event a point clear of a big group on 8 points including Nana Dzagnidze who took silver medal and Anna Ushenina Bronze.
  • Chinese Team Championship 2018 – Games and Results
    The Chinese Team Championship takes place Tuesday 10th Apr to Friday 30th Nov 2018.
  • PRO Chess League 2018 – Games and Results
    The PRO Chess League was a rapid chess tournament that took place on the website 18th January to 8th April 2018. 32 city based teams from throughout the world start in four groups. Play day is generally Wednesday. St. Louis, Chengdu, Armenia and Ljubljana all qualified for the final four in San Francisco 7th-8th April. Time control 15 minutes plus 2 seconds a move. Leading players: Magnus Carlsen, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, etc. In a thriling finale the Armenian Eagles beat the Chengdu Pandas in the final but only after three tie-break games. The Saint Louis Archbishops were 3rd and the Ljubljana Turtles 4th. Games from the final weekend now available.

  • Caruana beats Vitiugov to win the GRENKE Classic – 9
    Fabiano Caruana was a convincing winner of the GRENKE Classic when he finished a point clear of World Champion Magnus Carlsen. Caruana survived a lost position against the World Champion and in the last round defeated another rival for first place, Nikita Vitiugov, with the black pieces. Caruana chose a surprising computer line in the Petroff he discovered after playing Grischuk in the Candidates. 5…Qd7 soon proved to be an inspired choice as Caruana took over the initiative and his opponent resigned on move 40.

    Magnus Carlsen tried the Sicilian against Viswanathan Anand, he took about as many risks as sensible but never generated any winning chances for himself before the draw was agreed. The other games were drawn, Aronian and Bluebaum seemed happy to finish with a draw, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave was in trouble for a while against Georg Meier and Hou Yifan must have been winning against Arkadij Naiditsch.

    Final Round 9 standings: 1st Caruana 6.5pts 2nd Carlsen 5.5pts 3rd= Aronian, Vitiugov, Vachier-Lagrave 5pts 6th Bluebaum 4.5pts 7th= Anand, Hou Yifan, Naiditsch 3.5pts 10th Meier 3pts

    Round 9 2pm BST Monday 9th April Anand draw Carlsen, Hou Yifan draw Naiditsch, Vachier-Lagrave draw Meier, Aronian draw Bluebaum Vitiugov 0-1 Caruana

  • Caruana retains his GRENKE Classic lead going into Monday’s final round – 8
    All the games were drawn in the 8th round of the GRENKE Classic and there were few if any missed chances in these games.

    The longest game of the day was between the two players tied for second, Magnus Carlsen and Nikita Vitiugov. Carlsen tried a Giuoco Piano but didn’t really get any advantage, Carlsen tried for a very long time right into the endgame, posed some problems, but the objective assessment was level througout. Vitiugov was impressive in not really giving anything away at any point. Vitiugov now faces the leader Fabiano Caruana in the final round with white while Carlsen will play Viswanathan Anand with black.

    Round 8 results Sunday 8th April 2pm: Carlsen draw Vitiugov, Caruana draw Aronian, Bluebaum draw MVL, Meier draw Hou Yifan, Naiditsch draw Anand.

    Round 8 standings: 1st Caruana 5.5pts, 2nd= Carlsen, Vitiugov 5pts 4th= Vachier-Lagrave, Aronian 4.5pts 6th Bluebaum 4pts, 7th= Hou Yifan, Anand, Naiditsch 3pts, 10th Meier 2.5pts.

    Round 9 2pm BST Monday 9th April Anand-Carlsen, Hou Yifan-Naiditsch, Vachier-Lagrave-Meier, Aronian-Bluebaum, Vitiugov-Caruana.

  • Caruana takes the lead in the GRENKE tournament after 7 rounds – 7
    Fabiano Caruana took the sole lead after defeating Maxime Vachier-Lagrave in Round 7 of the GRENKE Classic. MVL got caught out in the opening and eventually allowed his pieces to become discoordinated. After 19…g5 MVL got pushed back and his position deteriorated quickly.

    Magnus Carlsen finally won another game beating Arkadij Naiditsch using the Sicilian Defence as black.

    Viswanathan Anand was in trouble against Georg Meier but eventually held the draw. Levon Aronian and Nikita Vitiugov drew a balanced struggle and Hou Yifan against Matthias Bluebaum was also drawn after a balanced looking game.

    Round 7 standings: 1st Caruana 5pts, 2nd= Carlsen, Vitiugov 4.5pts 4th= Vachier-Lagrave, Aronian 4pts 6th Bluebaum 3.5pts, 7th= Hou Yifan, Anand, Naiditsch 2.5pts, 10th Meier 2pts.

    Round 8 pairings Sunday 8th April 2pm: Carlsen-Vitiugov, Caruana-Aronian, Bluebaum-MVL, Meier-Hou Yifan, Naiditsch-Anand.

  • Caruana survives against Hou Yifan as the leaders all draw in GRENKE Round 6 – 6
    Fabiano Caruana had an escape against Hou Yifan in round 6 of the GRENKE Classic after his opponent couldn’t find the correct winning idea. 34.Nd2? (34.h4) f5! was where Hou Yifan gained her winning advantage, 59.d4 with the idea 59.cxd4+ Kxd4 followed by c3+ was I believe the way to win. As it was Hou chose another plan that unfortunately for her was just holdable for Caruana.

    The other joint leaders Nikita Vitiugov and Maxime Vachier-Lagrave drew. MVL was very well prepared in a King’s Indian Fianchetto line but his 14…Rfd8 rather than 14…Nbc4= caused him some unnecessary suffering before the draw was agreed.

    Magnus Carlsen also seemed to have been out prepared by his opponent, Levon Aronian played very quickly up to 19.Rc1 when he fell into a long think in a very complicated position. Aronian as Black was better, perhaps not by a great deal, and after 26…Qd6 (Aronian didn’t like this and the computer prefers 26…Rd6) Carlsen found his way to equality and a draw on move 52.

    Matthias Bluebaum scored his first win of the event, against former World Champion Viswanathan Anand. Anand seemed to be trying a bit too hard, encouraged perhaps by Bluebaum’s lack of time, 19…Bd5 is a bit too optimistic. Bluebaum won a piece but Anand had a chance with 29…Nc4 to have pressure, after 29…b2? Bluebaum converted his advantage clinically.

    Georg Meier made a one move blunder in a roughly equal position against Arkadij Naiditsch, after 33.cxb6?? Qb7! he walked into an unstoppable attack and resigned.

    Round 6 standings: 1st-3rd MVL, Vitiugov, Caruana 4pts, 4th-4th Carlsen, Aronian 3.5pts, 6th Bluebaum 3pts, 7th Naiditsch 2.5pts, 8th-9th Anand, Hou Yifan 2pts, 10th Meier 1.5pts

    Round 7 pairings 2pm BST Saturday 7th March: Naiditsch-Carlsen, Anand-Meier, Hou Yifan-Bluebaum, MVL-Caruana, Aronian-Vitiugov

  • All games drawn in GRENKE Classic Round 5; Carlsen escapes with a draw – 5
    Magnus Carlsen took a few too many risks against Georg Meier in round 5 of the GRENKE Classic and was pretty lucky to escape with a draw. Neither Meier nor Carlsen saw winning lines but suspected that black’s position was bad. As it was by first time control the position was level and ended in a draw.

    Arkadij Naiditsch built up a big, winning, advantage against Matthias Bluebaum but this advantage gradually disappeared in a messy game. Viswanathan Anand and Fabiano Caruana drew an interesting Caro-Kann. Maxime Vachier-Lagrave and Levon Aronian drew an interesting Ruy Lopez where MVL found a nice shot with 19.Nxe6, a move clearly missed by Aronian, but fortunately for black it wasn’t winning and the game was drawn. Nikita Vitiugov was clearly better prepared than Hou Yifan in a theoretical Zaitsev Ruy Lopez but Hou’s sensible play kept her out of trouble and the game was also drawn.

    Round 5 standings: 1st-3rd MVL, Caruana, Vitiugov 3.5pts, 4th-5th Carlsen, Aronian 3pts 6th-7th Anand, Bluebaum 2pts 8th-10th Naiditsch, Hou,Yifan, Meier 1.5pts.

    Round 6 pairings 2pm Friday: Carlsen-Aronian, Vitiugov-MVL, Caruana-Hou Yifan, Bluebaum-Anand, Meier-Naiditsch.

  • Caruana joins Vitiugov and MVL in the lead of the GRENKE Classic after 4 rounds – 4
    Fabiano Caruana defeated Arkadij Naiditsch in the only decisive game of the fourth round of the GRENKE Chess Classic in Baden Baden. Caruana had looked to be pressing for a win but 19…cxd4?! (19…Qzd4!) left the position level. Naiditsch started to burn is available time trying to find complete equality and instead found difficulty and was finally lost by move 40. According to the computer 34…Qd7! was still equal but this was a bit hard to understand immediately.

    Magnus Carlsen was frustrated by Maxime Vachier-Lagrave who had prepared their opening right down to the endgame, even if he couldn’t quite recall all the precise details. Carlsen was a bit unhappy with 25.a4 but the general feeling was MVL knew at least as much if not more than Carlsen and was comfortable.

    Viswanathan Anand equalised as black quickly against Nikita Vitiugov using the Caro Kann and the game was drawn. Hou Yifan too seemed untroubled as black against Levon Aronian and drew in 39 moves. Matthias Bluebaum against Georg Meier also seemed balanced for much of the game.

    Round 4 Standings: 1st-3rd MVL, Caruana, Vitiugov 3pts, 4th-5th Carlsen, Aronian 2.5pts 6th-7th Anand, Bluebaum 1.5pts 8th-10th Naiditsch, Hou,Yifan, Meier 1pt

    Round 5 Pairings: Meier-Carlsen, Naiditsch-Bluebaum, Anand-Caruana, Hou Yifan-Vitiugov, MVL-Aronian

Susan Polgar Chess Daily News and Information