Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Tal Memorial 2013

This year's Tal Memorial is scheduled to begin today

The list of participants is mouth watering -

1 Magnus Carlsen NOR
2 Vladimir Kramnik RUS
3 Sergey Karjakin RUS
4 Viswanathan Anand IND
5 Fabiano Caruana ITA
6 Hikaru Nakamura USA
7 Shakhriyar Mamedyarov AZE
8 Alexander Morozevich RUS
9 Boris Gelfand ISR
10 Dmitry Andreikin RUS

The last player, Andreikin , is a very promising young grandmaster who has not received world wide attention. His inclusion in this event should change that. He played well in the World Blitz recently, finishing 9th.

Andreikin, Dmitry
GM Dmitry Andreikin

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

World Blitz Champion

The 2013 FIDE World Blitz champion is Vietnamese GM Le Quang Liem. The Vietnamese scored 20.5 out of a possible 30 points to finish half a point ahead of  three players,Alexander Grischuk , Ruslan Ponomariov and Ian Nepomniachtchi. Grischuk took the silver and Ponomariov the bronze on tie-break. Le won a USD40,000.00 for this win.

A bit of a surprise was the fine placing of  fellow Vietnamese, Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son who scored 19.5 points just missing out on a medal. While everyone seems to be tiring on the last day, the Vietnamese made less blunders and took advantage of all the tactical breaks that came his way.

Black has unstoppable pawns and should win with some careful play. Instead 48 Ke4 Rb4+ 49. Kd5 Bb2?? 50 f5+ discovered attack on the black rook.

Another example, 30 Rc8?? Rc4! 31. Be5 Bxf2+

The situation looks bad but things can still change. 59. Bd5
Rd8 60. Rf7 Rd6+ 61. Kb5+ Kb8 62. Rb7+ Kc8 63. Rxa7 d3 64. Ra3?? d2 65. Rd3 Kc7
66. a3 Rh6 67. b4 Rh3 68. Rxh3 d1=Q
and black won.

In case I gave the impression that he only wins by opponent's blunders, here is a powerful tactical game from Nguyen.

Monday, June 10, 2013

FIDE World Rapid and Blitz

The FIDE World Rapid Championship 2013 and FIDE World Blitz Championship 2013 are being held in Khanty-Mansiysk (Russia) from June 06 to 10, 2013. The prize fund is  USD400,000 split between the rapid and blitz and no doubt was the reason many famous and strong grandmasters were taking part.

The rapid event has completed and the Azerbaijani GM Shakhriyar Mamedyarov won the title ahead of Russian Ian Nepomniachtchi. In fact , the Russian was leading with a two points advantage after the first two days. However, on the last day he could only manage four draws and one loss. Mamedyarov won all his five games! The final top spots are Mamedyarov with 11.5, Nepomniachtchi 11 and Grischuk 10.5. Vietnamese GM Le Quang Liem was fourth with 10 points. Le was satisfied with a quick draw in the last round for a nice share of the prize fund.

There is a live telecast and commentary at the official site. Another fourteen games starts around 4:00 PM local time today.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Another look at Aron-Jianwen ending

After Sumant commented that the ending is drawn, I decided to analyze it in more detail. I start with this position as black cannot prevent white from achieving it.

The next step for white is to cut off the black king from the f5 pawn. Black cannot stop this but he can decide whether he is cut off on the rank or on the file. The game continued

1...Kf4 2. Rb8 Ke4 3. Rf8 Bb2 4. Kg5

Now black made a fatal mistake with 4...Bc3  ?? and lost after 5. Rf7?  Bb2?? 6. Kg4 Bf6 7. Ra7 Ke5 8. Ra6 Kd5 9. Re6 . The black king is cut off along the e-file and white won as in the actual game.

From the diagram above, black had only one drawing move, 4...Kf3! White cannot
improve his position for example, 5. Rb8 Bf6+ 6. Kg6 Kf4 7. Rb4+ Kf3 ! (Not 7...Ke5 8. Rb6 and black is in zugzwang). Black is cut off on the 4th rank but this is alright as white cannot maintain this and attack the g7 pawn e.g  8. Kh5 Kg3! 9. Kg6 Kf3 10. Rb7 Kg4 (Whenever the rook attacks the g7 pawn, black just ensures that his king is around f4 or g4) 11. Rd7 Kf4 draws

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Aron Teh is 2013 National Champ

Aron Teh became the 2013 National Champion winning his final game when Fong Yit San drew a winning position. After a second round loss to Li Tian he scored six wins and a draw. Congrats to Aron. I have already singled out this boy as a talent last year here. Aron also tied for first in the World Amateur as mentioned in Kevin's blog

Yit San must be pretty upset after he found out that he had a mate when he gave perpetual check. If he had won, he would have tied with Aron and possibly the better tie-break would have given the title to Yit San instead. Curiously he had plenty of time on the clock. Nerves do play a part in this game.

Fong Yit San - Muhd Syazwan
White bailed out with a draw believing he had nothing more, with checks on c6 and c7. Instead he totally overlooked a mate with 1. Bxh5+ Rxh5 2. Qc6+ Kd8 3. Rf8 mate.

Aron sacrificed two pieces for a rook and strong passed pawn on b3.

Kamin Al Kamil - Aron Teh
1....b5! cuts off the white queen. 2. e4? This must be a time pressure move 2...Qd2 3. Bc1 Qxc3 4. Nf5 Qxc1! and white could not prevent the b-pawn from queening.

Open Final Rank
In the women's section, the leader Nur Nabila suffered a defeat to Puteri Rifqah.  This did not affect the first place as Nabila already had a one point lead. Her sister, Nur Najiha drew with Teh De Zen.

Women Final Rank
Congratulations to the winners of the Open and Women!