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The Scotsman

Chess News May 2003

to "The Scotsman" chess column

30th May, 2003

JUST as Rudyard Kipling would have it that "never the twain shall meet", likewise on the domestic scene the East and West of Scotland Championships traditionally never clash by being played over consecutive weekends.

The East of Scotland Championship was held 16-18 May at Grangemouth Sports Centre, with last year's champion Jonathan Grant having to share the title this year with Edinburgh West teammate Neil Farrell, as both finished unbeaten on a score of 4/5. The subsidiary East Challengers Under-1800 event ended in a three-way tie between George Murphy (Dalmuir), Findlay Murray (Bank of Scotland) and Mark Wozniak (Livingston).

Last weekend the West of Scotland title was held at its more or less perennial home of Clarkston Hall in Glasgow. And, with the surprising no-show of defending champion IM Steve Mannion, the path was clear for his Cathcart teammate IM Roddy McKay to dominate a somewhat weakened field than in previous years to take the title with an unbeaten score of 4/5. In the Challengers, Rosie Giulian of Giffnock took first with 4.5/5.

Due to pressures of work and family commitments McKay, a former seven times Scottish champion, now only plays league games for his club and occasional tournaments, such as the West - all a far cry from his days as a junior in the late 60s, when he was recognised as force in the game not just in Scotland, but also worldwide.

Before the finals of the 1969 World Junior Championships in Stockholm, McKay (along with Eugene Torre of the Philippines) was singled out by the eventual winner of the tournament, a certain Russian called Anatoly Karpov, as one of his chief rivals for the title.

Over the years, Roddy, through his spectacular games, has continued to dazzle and bewitch spectators (and opponents!) with the "Old McKay Black Magic". The hallmark of a typical McKay game is a devastating sacrificial attack, usually leading to a king hunt, much like today's game from the opening round of the West of Scotland Championship.

Unlike previous years, the winners of these two venerable titles would normally have an automatic qualifying spot for the Scottish Championship. But, due to the national title moving to Easter from its traditional July berth to accommodate the British Championships in Edinburgh this year (for an online entry form and further details, go to: www.bcf.org.uk/events/bcf2003/index.html), the respective winners have to make do instead with the title.


W Burnett - R McKay
West of Scotland Ch. (1), Vienna Opening

1 e4 e5 2 Nc3 Nf6 3 g3 c6 4 Bg2 d5 5 d4 Nxe4 6 Nxe4 dxe4 7 dxe5 Qxd1+ 8 Kxd1 Bf5 9 Ne2 Na6 10 Bd2 0-0-0 11 Kc1 Bc5 12 Rf1 Rhe8 13 Bf4 Nb4 14 a3 Nxc2 15 Kxc2 e3+ 16 Kc1 Rd2 17 Bxe3 Rxe2 18 Kd1 Rc2 19 Bxc5 Rxc5 20 f4 Rc2 21 Bf3 Rxh2 22 g4 Bd3 23 Rh1 Rf2 24 Rh3 Rd8 25 Ra2 Bc4+ 26 Ke1 Rf1 mate 0-1

29th May, 2003

THE 33rd Bosna-2003 supertournament, which ran 18-27 May at the Dom Armije Concert Hall in downtown Sarajevo, was won by returning local hero Ivan Sokolov, who kept his nerve in the final few rounds of the tournament to successfully fend off the challenge from the chasing pack.

Fourth seed Sokolov, a former Bosnian who now plays under the Dutch flag, went through the tournament undefeated to record one of the biggest wins of his career. Sokolov's winning score of 6.5/9 gave him a winning margin of half a point over last year's winner Sergei Movsessian, top seed Alexei Shirov and Rustam Kasimdzanov, who all finished second equal on 6.

One highlight of the tournament was the return of the King's Indian Defence, with 13 of the 45 games featuring it. The honours were even at the end of the tournament with 6.5-6.5, however the reintroduction made for some highly-entertaining play - much like today's last round effort between Russia's Evgeny Bareev and Azerbaijani prodigy Teimour Radjabov.

There was some entertaining fireworks with 24 ..Rxf2! before the game fizzled out to a draw - accepting the sacrifice was just too dangerous: 25 Kxf2 Bd4+ 26 Be3 Nf5 27 c5 Qf4 with winning chances


Final standings: 1 I Sokolov (Netherlands) 6.5/9; 2-4 S Movsesian (Slovakia), A Shirov (Spain), R Kasimdzhanov (Uzbekistan) 6; 5 T Radjabov (Azerbaijan) 5; 6-7 B Kurajica, (Bosnia), E Bareev (Russia) 4.5; 8 Z Kozul (Croatia) 3; 9 B Damljanovic (Yugoslavia) 2; 10 E Dizdarevic (Bosnia) 1.5.


E Bareev, - T Radjabov
Bosna-2003 (9), King's Indian Defence

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 b4 Nh5 10 Re1 f5 11 Ng5 Nf6 12 Bf3 c6 13 Rb1 h6 14 Ne6 Bxe6 15 dxe6 fxe4 16 Nxe4 Nxe4 17 Bxe4 d5 18 Bc2 Qd6 19 Qg4 h5 20 Qh3 e4 21 Be3 b6 22 b5 d4 23 Bg5 d3 24 Bb3 Rxf2 25 Rxe4 Raf8 26 Qe3 Re2 27 Bxe7 Rxe3 28 Bxd6 Rxe4 29 Bxf8 Bd4+ 30 Kh1 Kxf8 31 bxc6 Rxe6 32 c7 draw

28th May, 2003

AN investigation into Garry Kasparov's infamous match against IBM's Deep Blue will be the first movie sponsored through a new documentary fund, set up by a partnership between the BBC, the UK Film Council and the Canadian National Film Board.

Each of the three partners will contribute equally to the fund over the next two years, which will be dedicated exclusively to the production of feature length documentaries for theatrical release. The link-up is down to the enormous popularity and critical success of recent documentaries such as Michael Moore's Bowling for Columbine.

The first film to be financed by the $3.5-million World Documentary Fund, will be "Game Over: Kasparov and the Machine", produced in conjunction with Alliance Atlantis, which is set for release in theatres this fall. The controversial match marked the first time a computer defeated a reigning world champion in an official match - and also Kasparov's first in match-play.

The film will be directed by Vikram Jayanti, an acclaimed master of documentary film-making, who won an Oscar for his work on the 1996 film "When We Were Kings", covering an equally more infamous match-up: the 1974 'Rumble in the Jungle' heavyweight championship boxing bout in Zaire between Muhammad Ali and George Foreman.

Meanwhile, in the Dutch town of Leiden, the 3rd International CSVN (Computer Chess Association Netherlands) took place at the Denksportcentrum (Minds Sports Centre), running 16-18 May. There was a strong field of 14 computer programs taking part, among them the top three on the Swedish SSDF Computer Rating List: Shredder, Fritz and Chess Tiger.

For the past two year's the tournament has been dominated by top-playing program Fritz from the ChessBase stable. Despite losing to Fritz, The King, the chess engine of the world's top-selling program ChessMaster, won the tournament on tie-break with a final score of 7.5/9, thanks to a last round victory over Chess Tiger, who finished on the same score.


CSVN Leiden (8), Sicilian c3

1 e4 c5 2 Nf3 Nf6 3 e5 Nd5 4 c3 e6 5 d4 cxd4 6 cxd4 d6 7 Bc4 Nb6 8 Bd3 Nc6 9 0-0 Nb4 10 Bb5+ Bd7 11 Bg5 Be7 12 Bxe7 Qxe7 13 Nc3 0-0 14 Bxd7 Qxd7 15 a3 N4d5 16 Ne4 dxe5 17 dxe5 Rac8 18 Re1 Rfd8 19 Qb1 Nf4 20 Nd6 Rc6 21 Qe4 Nbd5 22 Rad1 f5 23 Qb1 Rc5 24 Qa2 a5 25 g3 Ng6 26 b4 Rc3 27 Rxd5 Rxf3 28 Rdd1 Nf8 29 Nxb7 Qxd1 30 Rxd1 Rxd1+ 31 Kg2 Rdd3 32 Qc4 Rc3 33 Qb5 f4 34 bxa5 fxg3 35 hxg3 Rf7 36 a6 Rxa3 37 Qb6 Ra2 38 a7 1-0

27th May, 2003

LOCAL hero Ivan Sokolov is proving to be in inspired form in the return to his homeland, as he extends his lead in the Bosna-2003 tournament in Sarajevo.

Sokolov, a former Bosnian who now plays under the Dutch flag, took the sole lead in after beating the sixteen-year-old Azerbaijani prodigy Teimour Radjabov in round five. Going into the final two rounds, Sokolov has now extended his lead at the top with a one-point advantage over the chasing pack.

One of the highlights of the Bosna-2003 tournament has been the rehabilitation of the King's Indian Defence at the top level. In their 1950s pomp, the great tacticians Mikhail Tal and David Bronstein used to employ the King's Indian to devastating effect, as did Bobby Fischer and Garry Kasparov.

It is only in the last few years, mainly due to the influence of Vladimir Kramnik, that the once active defence went out of fashion among the elite circuit. After seven rounds and 35 games in Sarajevo, the new 'KID' on the block has been played 11 times with an equal score of 5.5-5.5 - however it started off superbly for the black players with 3/3, before Sokolov hit back with successive white wins against Damijanovic and Radjabov.


Standings: 1 I Sokolov (Netherlands) 5.5/7; 2-4 R Kasimdzhanov (Uzbekistan), S Movsesian (Slovakia), 4 T Radjabov (Azerbaijan) 4.5; 5-6 A Shirov (Spain), E Bareev, (Russia), 4; 7 B Kurajica (Bosnia) 3.5; 8 Z Kozul (Croatia) 2.5; 9-10 B Damljanovic, (Yugoslavia), E Dizdarevic (Bosnia) 1.


I Sokolov - T Radjabov
Bosna-2003 (5), King's Indian Defence

1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 g6 3 Nc3 Bg7 4 e4 d6 5 Bd3 0-0 6 Nge2 c5 7 d5 e6 8 0-0 exd5 9 exd5 Ng4 10 f4 Re8 11 h3 Nh6 12 Bd2 Nf5 13 Qb3 Na6 14 Rae1 Rb8 15 a3 Nc7 16 a4 Bd7 17 Ne4 Na6 18 Kh2 Nb4 19 Bb1 Qh4 20 Bc3 Ne3 21 Bxg7 Nxf1+ 22 Rxf1 Rxe4 23 Bxe4 Kxg7 24 Qc3+ Qf6 25 f5 Qxc3 26 Nxc3 Re8 27 f6+ Kf8 28 Bb1 b6 29 a5 bxa5 30 Ne4 a4 31 Nxd6 Re2 32 Ne4 Na6 33 Rf2 Re1 34 Bc2 Re3 35 Rd2 a3 36 bxa3 Rxa3 37 Re2 Ra2 38 Nd6 1-0

26th May, 2003

LAST year's painstaking attempts to reconcile the chess world, summed up in the so-called Prague Agreement, looks set for another blow with a statement to be released today in London by Einstein TV.

Einstein, who own the rights to the World Classical Chess Championship, have confirmed that they have been unable to secure full sponsorship from the Hungarian government (or any government for that matter) to cover all the prize fund for the Vladimir Kramnik-Peter Leko title match, which had an expected purse of $1 million plus. A significant number of potential title sponsors are believed to have shown an interest in sponsoring the match, but, despite positive negotiations with the Einstein team, the amounts to be raised in the time scale proved impossible.

"Combined with underlying international economic anxieties, the Iraqi war effectively undermined global commercial confidence to the point that no potential sponsor was willing to commit sufficient funds towards this match for us to feel secure in proceeding," the statement says.

Despite the setback, which indirectly could release Kramnik from his contract with Einstein by the end of June should the world champion wish to do so, Einstein remain upbeat and have indicated that they are determined to deliver high-quality elite chess events. They are now believed to be in exploratory discussions with a leading consortium on a major new chess development that could lead to the match being played later in the year; or indeed under a new structure. The statement further adds, "Given the current global economic climate and its associated uncertainties, we [Einstein] believe that everyone involved in the world of chess should work towards a common goal of establishing firm and lasting foundations for a commercially viable series of world championship chess events."

However, it's not all bad news on the unification merry-go-round. Also expected this week is a statement from FIDE, announcing that they have now secured from Argentina the $1 million in bank guarantees required that will allow the Garry Kasparov - Ruslan Ponomariov to take place in Buenos Aires, though now with an expected mid November start rather than the expected June date.

The fear now is that FIDE, who now have what they want with Kasparov back in the fold, could take full advantage of Einstein's predicament by pulling out of the Prague Agreement, and ultimately the unification process.


T Radjabov - E Dizdarevic
Bosna-2003 (6), Semi-Slav Defence

1 d4 d5 2 c4 c6 3 Nc3 Nf6 4 e3 e6 5 Nf3 Nbd7 6 Qc2 Bd6 7 g4 Nxg4 8 Rg1 Nh6 9 Bd2 Nf8 10 e4 dxe4 11 Nxe4 Nf5 12 Nxd6+ Qxd6 13 0-0-0 Ng6 14 h4 Nge7 15 Bd3 f6 16 h5 Kf7 17 Rg4 b5 18 Bf4 Qb4 19 Rdg1 bxc4 20 Bxc4 Rg8 21 a3 Qb6 22 Nh4 Nd5 23 Nxf5 exf5 24 R4g3 a5 25 Rb3 Qa7 26 Bxd5+ cxd5 27 Qc6 Qa6 28 Qxd5+ Be6 29 Rb7+ Ke8 30 Re1 Rc8+ 31 Kd2 Rc6 32 Qd7+ 1-0

22nd May, 2003

THE recent and ancient history of Sarajevo is sorrowful and tangled, full of breakdowns. Yet, in-between its turbulent past, the former Yugoslavian town occupies a special place on the world chess map.

Apart from a ten-year gap (1988-1998) in its long run when Sarajevo suffered badly during the Balkans war, thirty-three tournaments have been held there since the inaugural event in 1957.

Among those that have played in the past are world champions like Tal, Petrosian, Spassky and Kasparov, and candidates for the crown such as Keres, Bronstein, Gligoric, Larsen, Portisch, Polugaevsky and Korchnoi. This rich chess tradition makes Sarajevo the third longest-running international tournament behind famous events such as Hastings (78) and Wijk aan Zee (65). And, since 1978, the main organisers of the tournament have been the highly-successful 'Bosna' club, four-time winners of the European Club Championship title.

The attractive line-up for this year's category 16 'Bosna 2003' event (average rating 2636), running 18-27 May at the Dom Armije Concert Hall, is: Alexei Shirov (Spain), Evgeny Bareev (Russia), Rustam Kasimdzhanov (Uzbekistan), Ivan Sokolov (Netherlands), Sergei Movsesian (Slovakia), Teimour Radjabov (Azerbaijan), Zdenko Kozul (Croatia), Branko Damljanovic (Serbia), Bojan Kurajica and Emir Dizdarevic (Bosnia).

Making all the running in the early rounds are Radjabov and Sokolov, who both lead the field with an unbeaten score of 2.5/3.


Z Kozul - T Radjabov
Bosna 2003 (3), King's Indian Defence

1 d4 Nf6 2 Nf3 g6 3 c4 Bg7 4 Nc3 d6 5 e4 0-0 6 Be2 e5 7 0-0 Nc6 8 d5 Ne7 9 Ne1 Nd7 10 Nd3 f5 11 Bd2 Nf6 12 f3 f4 13 c5 g5 14 cxd6 cxd6 15 Nf2 h5 16 Rc1 Ng6 17 Nb5 Rf7 18 Qc2 Ne8 19 a4 Bd7 20 Qb3 Bf8 21 Rc4 a6 22 Na3 Rg7 23 a5 Nf6 24 Qb6 Qe8 25 h3 g4 26 fxg4 hxg4 27 hxg4 Nh4 28 Rc7 Qg6 29 Be1 Rh7 30 Qb3 Nxe4 31 Qd3 Ng3 32 Rxb7 e4 33 Nxe4 Nxe4 34 Rxd7 Rxd7 35 Bxh4 Qh7 36 Rxf4 Qxh4 37 Rxe4 Bg7 38 Bf3 Rf8 39 Nc4 Rdf7 40 Re3 Rf4 41 Re4 Rxf3 42 gxf3 Qg3+ 43 Kh1 Kf7 44 Nxd6+ Qxd6 45 Kg2 Rh8 46 Qb3 Qh2+ 47 Kf1 Qh1+ 0-1

21st May, 2003

CUBAN chess has been alive and well ever since the great Jose Raul Capablanca (1888-1942) wrested the world title from Emanuel Lasker at Havana in 1921. Fittingly, in a true tribute to one of the games great icons, each year since its launch on the 20th anniversary of his death in 1962, Cuba has held a memorial event to better remember their fallen hero.

The latest memorial, the 38th in the series, was held in downtown Havana at the Hotel Neptuno, running 5-19 May, and consisted of one elite tournament, two premier events, and a "mixto" tournament, providing a total field of 54 players.

However, despite the extra events, the top-rated elite tournament was the cynosure of all eyes, with eleven GMs in the field of twelve taking part in the category 13 (average rating 2557) all-play-all. The event was led from start to finish by the Peruvian GM Julio Granada Zuniga, who dominated the field to take first place on 8/11, a full point ahead of the Cuban GM duo of Lenier Dominguez and Lazaro Bruzon.

The win marks yet another road in the recovery of the talented Zuniga, who in the last year or so has made a much-welcomed return to chess after a self-imposed exile from the game due to religious reasons.


Final standings: 1 J Granda Zuniga (Peru) 8/11; 2-3 L Dominguez (Cuba), L Bruzon (Cuba) 7; 4-5 I Morovic Fernandez (Chile), V Ikonnikov (Russia) 6.5; 6-7 U Andersson (Sweden), R Leitao (Brazil) 5.5; 8 W Arencibia, Walter (Cuba) 5; 9-10 J Nogueiras (Cuba), Y Gonzalez (Cuba) 4; 11-12 R Vera (Cuba), A Zapata (Cuba) 3.


J Granda Zuniga - R Vera
38th Capablanca Memorial (10), Reti's Opening

1 Nf3 d5 2 c4 e6 3 g3 c6 4 b3 a5 5 a3 a4 6 cxd5 exd5 7 b4 Nd7 8 Nc3 Nb6 9 d3 Be7 10 Bg2 Bf6 11 Bb2 Ne7 12 0-0 0-0 13 Qc2 Be6 14 Rad1 Qc8 15 Rfe1 Rd8 16 d4 Bf5 17 e4 dxe4 18 Nxe4 Ned5 19 Ne5 Be7 20 h4 Nf6 21 Nd3 Nxe4 22 Bxe4 Re8 23 Bxf5 Qxf5 24 Re5 Qd7 25 Nc5 Qc7 26 Rde1 Nd5 27 Nxa4 Red8 28 Nc3 Bd6 29 Nxd5 cxd5 30 Qxc7 Bxc7 31 Re7 Rac8 32 Rc1 Bd6 33 Rxb7 1-0

16th May, 2003

On the twentieth anniversary of the great José Raúl Capablanca’s death in 1962, Cuba paid tribute to one of the greatest names in the game by staging a memorial event in his honour.

Cuba has been chess-mad ever since Capablanca wrested the world crown from an aging, out of favour Emanuel Lasker at Havana in 1921; in the process, ending his 27-year reign. Nicknamed “The Chess Machine”, Capablanca was perhaps the greatest natural talent the game has ever seen. The aura of invincibility surrounding him continued to grow as he dominated the game from the end of the First World War until 1927 when, due to complacency as he was similarly blessed by being bone idle, he lost the world title to Alekhine.

Unfortunately, Capablanca could never raise the funds for a return match to bring the title back home, although he continued to play successfully in tournaments. And, of all the world champions, he must have suffered the lowest proportion of defeats in all his match and tournament games.

To this day, he’s still idolized in Cuba, which, despite the long-standing economic sanctions, boasts more grandmasters for any other nation of its size. The chess-boom reached its zenith there after the Castro revolution in 1959, when the game became a mass sport run along Soviet lines with state funding of top players.

Havana even staged one of the all-time great Chess Olympiads in 1966, where avid chess addicts Che Guevara and Fidel Castro were to be seen on a daily basis kibitzing in and around the playing hall with the top players of the day, such as Petrosian, Spassky, Tal and Fischer.

The 38th Capablanca Memorial is now underway in Havana. This year's tribute to Cuba's fallen hero is a mix of events, the main attraction being a category 13 (average 2557) round-robin. The participants in the main group are Granda Zuniga, Bruzon, Dominguez, Andersson, Ikonnikov, Morovic, Vera, Nogueiras, Leitao, Zapata, Arencibia and Gonzalez.


J Zuniga Granda – Y Gonzalez
38th Capablanca Memorial (1), Caro-Kann Advanced

1 e4 c6 2 d4 d5 3 e5 Bf5 4 Nf3 e6 5 Be2 c5 6 Be3 cxd4 7 Nxd4 Ne7 8 Nd2 Nbc6 9 N2f3 Bg4 10 0-0 Bxf3 11 Nxf3 Nf5 12 Bf4 Be7 13 Bd3 Nh4 14 Nxh4 Bxh4 15 Qg4 g6 16 Rad1 h5 17 Qf3 g5 18 Bc1 g4 19 Qf4 Qc7 20 Rfe1 Rg8 21 Qh6 0-0-0 22 g3 Nxe5 23 Rxe5 Qxe5 24 gxh4 g3 25 hxg3 Rxg3+ 26 fxg3 Qxg3+ 27 Kf1 Qf3+ 28 Ke1 Qg3+ 29 Kd2 Qf2+ 30 Kc3 Qc5+ 31 Kd2 Qf2+ 32 Kc3 Qc5+ 33 Kb3 Qb6+ 34 Ka4 Qc6+ 35 Ka3 Qc5+ 36 b4 Qc3+ 37 Ka4 b5+ 38 Kxb5 d4 39 Ka4 a5 40 Qd2 1-0

15th May, 2003

SINCE the demise of the legendary Soviet Chess School following the break-up of the USSR, Russia, with superstars such as Garry Kasparov and Vladimir Kramnik, took over the mantle of the world's leading chess superpower.

However, the balance of power could well shift full circle to Asia, the original birthplace of the game. China and India both lay claims to the origins of chess, and the governments of both countries are now investing heavily with state funding for chess in much the same way as the Soviets did after World War II.

The recent addition of chess to the 2006 Doha Asian Games will come down to a battle for gold between the two rival countries. Both teams recently went head to head for the medals at the Asian Team Chess Championships in Jodhpur, India. Despite the Indians picking up 10 of the 27 individual medals on offer, it wasn't the coveted team ones they so desired as China swept the Asian team titles in both the men's and women's sections.

In the men's section, China took gold with 25 points from India 'A' on 23.5, with India 'C', on 23 points, holding off Kazakhstan for the bronze. The board one individual performance went to little-known Dao Thein Hai of Vietnam, who top-scored on 7/9 to take gold ahead of China's Ye Jiang Chuan on 5.5, with India's Krishnan Sasikiran picking up the bronze.

In the women's section, China, with World Champion Zhu Chen taking the individual gold for her performance of 5.5/7 on top board, took the team gold on 20 points ahead of Vietnam on 19, with India 'A' the bronze on 18.5.


K Sasikiran - Dao Thien Hai
Asian Team Ch. (5), Queen's Gambit Accepted

1 Nf3 d5 2 d4 Nf6 3 c4 dxc4 4 e3 e6 5 Bxc4 a6 6 0-0 c5 7 Bb3 b5 8 a4 b4 9 Nbd2 Bb7 10 e4 cxd4 11 e5 Nd5 12 Nc4 Be7 13 Nxd4 0-0 14 Qg4 Kh8 15 Bc2 Nd7 16 Qh3 g6 17 Bh6 Rg8 18 Nf3 Rc8 19 Bb3 g5 20 Nxg5 Bxg5 21 Nd6 Nxe5 22 Nxb7 Nf4 23 Qe3 Qf6 24 Nd6 Ng4 25 Bxg5 Rxg5 26 Qa7 Ne5 27 Rfc1 Rxg2+ 28 Kf1 Rcg8 29 Ke1 0-1

14th May, 2003

LAST month in Copenhagen, the governing bodies of triathlon, amateur boxing and chess were the first to formally adopt a new global anti-doping code.

The World Anti-Doping Agency guidelines are designed to establish a uniform set of banned substances in sports ranging from amphetamines to steroids. Although they accept to adhere to the guidelines, FIDE plans to lobby the WADA for an exception to the drug-testing rules, claiming that chess, as a sport, "has a different perspective than other physical sports."

Under the new rules, competitive chess players, playing in major events such as the World Championships and Olympiads, would have to be wary of how much coffee they drink during the duration of a game, as caffeine is one of the stimulants banned by the WADA. The agency says "normal investigation" won't cause a positive test, but warns that results can vary based on a person's size and metabolism.

Dick Pound, an IOC member from Canada and chairman of the WADA, said he isn't considering exceptions for mind sports such as chess and bridge. "If they want to be treated as sports and not just as games, then they should accept the same rules as sports," said Pound. However, the chairman of the WADA did have some good news for chess players - he's now seriously looking at taking caffeine off the banned list.

Although chess isn't an Olympic sport, it's recognized by the IOC and hopes to be included in the Games in the future. For FIDE, the connection is important to the organization's 168 member federations, many of which receive crucial funding from their government through national Olympic committees or sports ministries.

Despite the intransigence of the IOC, the move to full acceptance as a sport may not be that far off. Last month it was also announced that chess would be included in the 2006 Asian Games in Doha, Qatar, as one of the 33 disciplines - where no doubt India and China will do battle for the gold medal.

Hot favourite for gold should he compete, would be India's Vishy Anand, the world number three, who along with Alexey Shirov, took part in an exhibition chess match during the 2000 Sydney Olympics. Last week Indian sports journalists voted Anand the inaugural "Hero of Indian Sports" award winner ahead of a star-studded field that included revered cricketers such as Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid.


V Anand - J Garcia Fernandez
Basque Match, (blindfold), Alekhine's Defence

1 e4 Nf6 2 e5 Nd5 3 d4 d6 4 Nf3 Bg4 5 Be2 c6 6 0-0 Bxf3 7 Bxf3 dxe5 8 dxe5 e6 9 Nd2 Nd7 10 Re1 Be7 11 g3 Qc7 12 Qe2 0-0 13 Bg2 Rfd8 14 Nf3 a5 15 h4 a4 16 a3 b5 17 Qe4 b4 18 Ng5 Nf8 19 axb4 Nxb4 20 Bf1 Rd4 21 Qe2 h6 22 Nxf7 Kxf7 23 c3 Rd5 24 Qe4 Na6 25 Qxa4 Ng6 26 Bxa6 Nxe5 27 Qe4 Nd3 28 Bxd3 Rxa1 29 Qxe6+ 1-0

13th May, 2003

DESPITE having a lacklustre performance in the past year by his own very high standards, world number one Garry Kasparov has somewhat surprisingly been awarded his twelfth Chess Oscar, the annual chess "Beauty Contest" that invites chess journalists, Grandmasters, and officials to submit their personal top 10 choices for player of the year.

Kasparov, who recently turned 40, polled 3802 points in the 2002 Chess Oscar and finished well ahead of Peter Leko (2668 points); the rest of the top-ten being: Vishy Anand (2453), Ruslan Ponomariov (2145), Vladimir Kramnik (1471), Evgeny Bareev (1132), Veselin Topalov (964), Judit Polgar (771), Anatoly Karpov (741), Alexander Grischuk (706).

The vote, organized by the Russian magazine "64", came as a surprise following a catalogue of disasters for Kasparov that included a shock loss to arch-rival Anatoly Karpov in New York; his only bright spot being the Bled Olympiad, where he turned in the highest individual performance rating to lead Russia to gold.

The chess year has been a good one for Hungary, thanks to the stunning performances of former prodigies Peter Leko and Judit Polgar, and my own voting preference reflected this with the choice of 1 Leko, 2 J Polgar, 3 Anand, 4 Kasparov, 5 Kramnik, 6 Bareev, 7 Ponomariov, 8 Karpov, 9 Adams, 10 Topalov.

For Leko, who came back from the "dead" last year, 2002 was outstanding and started by winning the Dubai Grand Prix. This was followed up by becoming Kramnik's official world title challenger after winning the Dortmund Candidates tournament. Polgar, who came eighth on the list, had her best season ever. The world's top female player (playing second behind Leko) was in stunning form as Hungary took silver in the Bled Olympiad just behind Russia; became the first female player to beat Kasparov in a competitive game; and best of all, came second behind Anand at Wijk aan Zee - all of which culminated in her finally breaking the 2700 barrier on the Elo list.

Originally the award was the brainchild of Spanish journalist Jorge Puig - with the cooperation of the International Association of Chess Press (the AIPE abbreviation is derived from the French name of the organisation: Association Internationale de la press echiqueene) - who initiated the annual award in 1967, the first recipient being Denmark's Bent Larsen. In 1989, following the demise of the AIPE, the Oscar became defunct. However, following a seven-year hiatus, Alexander Roshal, the influential editor of the top Russian magazine "64", revived the annual award.


Roll of Honour: Bent Larsen 1967; Boris Spassky 1968-69; Bobby Fischer 1970-72; Anatoly Karpov 1973-1977 and 1979-1981; Viktor Korchnoi 1978; Garry Kasparov 1982-1988, 1995-1996, 1999 and 2001-2002; Vishy Anand 1997-1998; Vladimir Kramnik 2000.


P Heine-Nielsen - L McShane
11th Sigeman & Co. (1), Gruenfeld Defence

1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 g6 3 Nc3 d5 4 cxd5 Nxd5 5 e4 Nxc3 6 bxc3 Bg7 7 Bc4 c5 8 Ne2 cxd4 9 cxd4 Nc6 10 Be3 0-0 11 0-0 Bg4 12 f3 Na5 13 Bd3 Be6 14 d5 Bxa1 15 Qxa1 f6 16 Bh6 Re8 17 Kh1 Bd7 18 e5 Rc8 19 Ng3 Nc4 20 Bxc4 Rxc4 21 Ne4 Qb6 22 Rd1 Rxe4 23 fxe4 fxe5 24 Qxe5 Qf6 25 Qg3 e6 26 d6 e5 27 h3 b5 28 Bg5 Qe6 29 Be7 Rc8 30 Rf1 Qc4 31 Qf2 b4 32 Bg5 Bb5 33 d7 Bxd7 34 Bh6 Bf5 35 exf5 Qf7 36 f6 a5 37 Qb6 Ra8 1-0

12th May, 2003

UKRAINIAN superstar Vassily Ivanchuk had a rare first place with victory at the eleventh Sigeman & Co. Tournament, which uniquely for a modern-day event was split between two cities and two countries.

As part of a major drive to increase cultural exchanges between the two Scandinavian countries of Sweden and Denmark, the first half of the tournament was held in Malmo, with the final four rounds played in Copenhagen.

Ivanchuk, the world number twelve, dominated the event in both venues and put in a gritty performance to finish on an unbeaten score of 7/9, a full point ahead of his nearest rival, the Danish number one Peter Heine-Nielsen. Making the most of the freedom from academic work with his gap year before going on to Oxford in October, England's Luke McShane had yet another good outing and scored a creditable third place with 5.5.

The ever-adventurous McShane only came undone in the tournament with his reliance in playing an ultra-sharp variation of the Gruenfeld Defence favoured by world number one Garry Kasparov that resulted in his only two defeats in the tournament. After losing to Peter Heine-Nielsen in the first round, in the final round McShane was hit by another Dane, Curt Hansen, with a little-known stunning sacrifice 20 Nxg6!; an amazing concept that appears to have lain undiscovered for over thirty years due to a major miss-assessment of the line.


Final scores: 1 GM V Ivanchuk (Ukraine) 7/9; 2 GM P Heine-Nielsen (Denmark) 6; 3 GM L McShane (England) 5.5; 4-7 GM S Berg-Hansen (Denmark, GM T Hillarp-Persson (Sweden), GM C Hansen (Denmark), GM E Sutovsky (Israel) 4.5; 8-9 GM J Hector (Sweden), GM J Timman (Holland) 4; 10 B Lindberg (Sweden) 0.5.


C Hansen - L McShane
11th Sigeman & Co. (9), Gruenfeld Defence

1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 g6 3 Nc3 d5 4 cxd5 Nxd5 5 e4 Nxc3 6 bxc3 Bg7 7 Bc4 c5 8 Ne2 0-0 9 0-0 Nc6 10 Be3 Bg4 11 f3 cxd4 12 cxd4 Na5 13 Bd3 Be6 14 d5 Bxa1 15 Qxa1 f6 16 Bh6 Re8 17 Kh1 Rc8 18 Nf4 Bd7 19 e5 Nc4 20 Nxg6 Ba4 21 e6 hxg6 22 Bxg6 Ne5 23 Be4 Bc2 24 Bxc2 Rxc2 25 Qd1 Kh7 26 f4 Kxh6 27 fxe5 Rc4 28 Qd3 b5 29 exf6 exf6 30 d6 Kg7 31 Qg3+ Kh7 32 Qh3+ Kg7 33 Qg3+ Kh7 34 Qf3 Kg6 35 Qd5 Rh8 36 h3 a6 37 Qd3+ Kg7 38 Qg3+ Kh7 39 Rf5 Qe8 40 Rxf6 Rg8 41 Qd3+ Kg7 42 Qf5 Rc5 43 Rf7+ 1-0

9th May, 2003

"IT'LL never work." That was the usual advice Chris Dunworth was given when in 1993 he embarked on creating a UK-wide professional chess league based on the model of the successful German Bundesliga.

Now, some ten years on, the 4 Nations Chess League (4NCL) has become Britain's premier team competition. As ever, the highlight of the 4NCL season is the 'Finals Weekend', played over the May Bank Holiday at the West Bromwich Moat House Hotel.

In previous years, Wood Green have been regarded as the perennial bridesmaids of the tournament, having been strong contenders in the past four seasons only to be pipped to the post by the likes of big-spending teams such as Slough and Index IT. However, as the opposition lost many of their star players through financial difficulties, Wood Green held on to their super-club status thanks to the unstinting support from club stalwarts Peter Sowray, IM Paul Littlewood and club captain Brian Smith.

With a star-studded line-up for the finals weekend that included the likes of Michael Adams, Nigel Short, Jon Speelman, Alexander Baburin and Bogdan Lalic, Wood Green took no chances going into the final three rounds of the weekend, and were odds-on to win their first 4NCL Div.1 title with a 100% score on 16 points out of 16 and a 2-point lead over their nearest rivals, Guildford and Barbican.

Easily outrating the opposition, Wood Green took no prisoners in the first two rounds of the final weekend with emphatic 7-1 and 8-0 victories, respectively, over Betsson.com and Perceptron Youth. On firepower alone, the only opposition they had came in the final game of the season, when they played Guildford. Despite being held to a 4-4 draw - a result that deprived them of being the only team in the history of the competition to win the title with a 100% score - at long last assured Wood Green of the title.


Final standings, Div.1: 1 Wood Green 1 21/22; 2 Guildford-ADC 1 19; 3 Barbican 4NCL 1 18; 4 Betsson.com 15; 5 Wood Green 2 12; 6 Richmond 11; 7 The ADs 1 10; 8 Slough 9; 9 Barbican 4NCL 2 6; Relegated - 10 Perceptron Youth 6; 11 S Wales Dragons 3; 12 Bristol 1 2.

A Baburin - R Pert
4NCL (9.4), Grunfeld Defence

1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 g6 3 Nf3 Bg7 4 g3 d5 5 cxd5 Nxd5 6 Bg2 Nb6 7 Nc3 Nc6 8 e3 0-0 9 0-0 Re8 10 d5 Na5 11 Nd4 Bd7 12 e4 c6 13 Bf4 cxd5 14 exd5 Rc8 15 Rc1 Nac4 16 b3 Nd6 17 Qd2 Rc5 18 Rfe1 Nbc8 19 Be3 Rc7 20 Nce2 Nf5 21 Nxf5 Bxf5 22 Nd4 Bd7 23 h4 h5 24 Nf3 Bg4 25 Ng5 Rd7 26 Qb4 Nb6 27 Qf4 Bf6 28 Bd4 Kg7 29 Rc5 Qb8 30 Be5 Qd8 31 Re3 Bf5 32 d6 Bxe5 33 Qxe5+ f6 34 Qxf5 gxf5 35 Ne6+ Kf7 36 Nxd8+ Rdxd8 37 dxe7 Rd1+ 38 Kh2 f4 39 gxf4 Rxe7 40 Rxe7+ Kxe7 41 Rxh5 Rd2 42 Rh7+ Ke6 43 Rxb7 Rxf2 44 Rxa7 Rxf4 45 Kg3 Rd4 46 h5 Rd3+ 47 Kf4 1-0

8th May, 2003

THIS week marks the first anniversary of the so-called ‘Prague Agreement’, a Unity Plan devised by America’s Yasser Seirawan that promised much to end the bitter schism that divided the chess world with two rival world titles, yet so far has failed to deliver.

Last year in Prague, both warring parties faced up to the reality outlined in Seirawan's plan that unification was the only way forward for the good of the game, and a timetable to accommodate this with a winner-takes-all showdown between the two champions scheduled for November being agreed to. Unfortunately, the peace process looks (for now) to have been derailed as both the FIDE world title match in Argentina between Kasparov and Ponamariov, and the Einstein world title match (as yet to be announced) between Kramnik and Leko, has been beset by problems.

In reality, one of the biggest problems is that there doesn't seem to be anyone coordinating both camps with the same vigour and enthusiasm as there was in bringing the rival groups to the negotiating table in the first place. Last year in Prague, despite all his valiant efforts to reunite the chess world, Seirawan had to sit back in despair at seeing the fruits of his many months of diplomacy and tender negotiations being 'hijacked' by others.

Despite the setback, life goes on as normal. A novel new event was recently held in the small Basque town of Santurtzi, near Bilbao in Spain, featuring three of the world’s elite players: Vishy Anand, Judit Polgar, and former world champion Anatoly Karpov.

They took on the Basque GM team of Félix Izeta, José Luis Fernández and Mario Gómez over the three disciplines of Blindfold, Rapidplay (50 minutes + 5 sec/move) and Advanced Chess, where the players are allowed to consult computers during the game. The top trio ‘Basqu-ed’ in glory with a convincing 14.5-3.5 victory. Again the female of the species proved to be the deadlier, with Polgar, on 5.5/6, being the top scorer ahead of Anand on 5/6 and Karpov on 4/6.

According to the main sponsors, the local town council, the aim of the event was to combine the sporting, cultural and spectacular sides of chess. Apart from the play at the board, the players took part in a debate on the film "Searching for Bobby Fischer", based on Fred Waitzkin's true story of the pain and anguish of a father standing on the sidelines as he saw his son, Josh, develop from a beginner to become one of America's top juniors.


A Karpov – F Izeta
Basque Match (rapid), Bogo-Indian Defence

1 d4 Nf6 2 Nf3 e6 3 c4 Bb4+ 4 Bd2 c5 5 Bxb4 cxb4 6 g3 b6 7 Bg2 Bb7 8 0-0 0-0 9 Qd3 d6 10 Nbd2 Nc6 11 Ne1 e5 12 Nc2 a5 13 Rfe1 Re8 14 Bxc6 Bxc6 15 e4 Qb8 16 a3 bxa3 17 Nxa3 Ra7 18 f3 h5 19 Nf1 Rb7 20 b4 exd4 21 b5 Bd7 22 Qxd4 Be6 23 Ne3 Rd7 24 Nb1 h4 25 Kf2 Qc7 26 Nc3 Qc5 27 Qxc5 dxc5 28 Na4 hxg3+ 29 hxg3 Rb8 30 e5 Rd2+ 31 Re2 Rxe2+ 32 Kxe2 Nh5 33 Kf2 f6 34 Rd1 fxe5 35 Rd6 Kf7 36 Nxb6 Nf6 37 Na4 Nd7 38 Ra6 Rh8 39 Kg2 e4 40 fxe4 Ne5 41 Nxc5 Bxc4 42 Nxc4 Nxc4 43 b6 Rb8 44 b7 Ne5 1-0

7th May, 2003

SINCE 1993, Sweden's Limhamn Chess Club have been organising an annual tournament in central Malmo, sponsored by a consortium led by the top legal firm of Sigeman & Co.

This year, as Sweden and Denmark continues a drive to increase cultural exchanges between the two Scandinavian countries, there is a radical change to the tournament. Limhamn have joined forces with the Copenhagen Chess Federation, the merger now seeing the tournament being split into two, with five rounds played in Malmo, and then concluding with four rounds in neighbouring Copenhagen.

Despite the change, the name remains the same as does the format: a ten-player all-play-all (running 29 April to 8 May), with six Scandinavian players facing four world class opponents. The line-up for the category 13 event (average rating 2572) is headed by world elite player GM Vassily Ivanchuck (Ukraine), and includes, in rating order, GM Emil Sutovsky (Israel), GM Peter Heine Nielsen (Denmark), GM Curt Hansen (Denmark), GM Luke McShane (England), GM Jan Timman (Netherlands), GM Jonny Hector (Sweden), GM Sune Berg Hansen (Denmark), GM Tiger Hillarp Persson (Sweden) and FM Bengt Lindberg (Sweden).

As the tournament reached its midway point with the transfer to Copenhagen, Ivanchuk has taken the sole lead on 4.5/6, a half-point behind the chasing pack of Nielsen, McShane and Sutovsky on 4.


S Hansen - V Ivanchuk
11th Sigeman & Co. (4), Sicilian Scheveningen

1 e4 c5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 d4 cxd4 4 Nxd4 Nf6 5 Nc3 d6 6 g3 e6 7 Bg2 Bd7 8 0-0 Be7 9 Nxc6 Bxc6 10 a4 0-0 11 Be3 Qc7 12 Qe2 a6 13 Rfd1 Rfe8 14 a5 Rac8 15 Qc4 Nd7 16 Qa2 h5 17 h4 g6 18 Rd2 Ne5 19 Bb6 Qb8 20 Bd4 Bf8 21 Rad1 Bh6 22 Re2 Qc7 23 Bb6 Qe7 24 Be3 Bxe3 25 Rxe3 Red8 26 Qb3 Qc7 27 Ra1 Rb8 28 Nd1 d5 29 exd5 Bxd5 30 Qc3 Nc6 31 Bh3 b6 32 Qf6 bxa5 33 Nc3 Rd6 34 Rae1 Rf8 35 g4 Qe7 36 Qf4 hxg4 37 Bxg4 Rfd8 38 Rg3 e5 39 Qh6 Qf6 40 h5 Qf4 41 Qxf4 exf4 42 Rd3 Nb4 43 Rd2 Bc6 44 Rxd6 Rxd6 45 Re5 Rd2 46 Bd1 Na2 0-1

6th May, 2003

THE Generation Chess International tournament at New York's famed Manhattan Chess Club was won by American International Master Eugene Perelshteyn, who dominated the novel event aimed at eradicating from the game the farce of the 'grandmaster draw'.

Despite a last round loss to Estonian top seed Jaan Ehlvest, Perelshteyn's margin of victory over his nearest rivals was a full point - a performance that also secured the University of Maryland Baltimore County student and team captain a grandmaster norm.

The new-styled event prohibited players from making draw offers before move 50; the only caveat being that of a repetition (or even stalemate), of which the tournament only had five. Most of the games from the tournament turned out to be hard-fought encounters as many of the players were forced into "re-discovering" the endgame in chess. By its conclusion, nearly 80% of the games (with an average of 51 moves per game) proved decisive compared to the more usual figure of 50% in such events.

The worst offending tournament on record for the abuse of GM draws was the 1999 Petrosian Memorial, where the ten players "competing" found a fitting way to pay tribute to the 9th world champion Tigran Petrosian - they managed 42 draws from 45 games, and at an average of just 26 moves!


Final standings: 1 IM E Perelshteyn (USA) 6.5/9; 2-4 IM I Krush (USA), GM J Ehlvest (Estonia), GM L Christiansen (USA) 5.5; 5 GM L Yudasin (Israel) 5; 6-7 IM A Simutowe (Zambia), IM V Akobian (USA) 4.5; 8 IM M Bluvshtein (Canada) 3.5; 9 FM S Muhammad (USA) 2.5; 10 IM W Paschall 2.


E Perelshteyn - J Ehlvest
Generation Tournament (9), Accelerated Dragon

1 e4 c5 2 Nc3 g6 3 Nf3 Bg7 4 d4 cxd4 5 Nxd4 Nc6 6 Be3 Nf6 7 Bc4 0-0 8 Bb3 d6 9 f3 Bd7 10 Qd2 Nxd4 11 Bxd4 b5 12 0-0-0 a5 13 a4 bxa4 14 Nxa4 Qb8 15 Kb1 Bxa4 16 Bxa4 Rc8 17 Qd3 Nh5 18 Qb3 Qc7 19 Bb6 Qc4 20 Rd5 Qe2 21 Rg1 Nf4 22 Rxa5 Rxa5 23 Bxa5 Ra8 24 Qb6 Bd4 25 Qxd4 Rxa5 26 b3 Nxg2 27 Qd1 Nf4 28 h4 Qf2 29 Qe1 Qb6 30 Ka2 Ne6 31 Rg4 h5 32 Rg2 Nc5 33 Rg5 Ra8 34 Ka3 Rb8 35 Qc3 Qa6 36 Rd5 Rc8 37 Qd2 Qf1 38 Qd1 Qf2 39 Rd2 Qe3 40 Qe2 Qc3 0-1

5th May, 2003

THE Dundee International of 1867 in Scotland, with a field that included the likes of Steinitz and Blackburne, proved to be a landmark event for the evolution of chess praxis by being the first tournament where draws counted as a half-point and were not replayed.

In those good old days of yore, the thought of a quick draw would have been an abhorrence to such a swashbuckling group of masters. Nowadays, the notorious "grandmaster draw," a short, uneventful splitting of the point between players too lazy, too bored, too tired or too scared to fight at the board, has long been a problem for the game.

There was controversy at this year's US Championships in Seattle ran by the America's Foundation for Chess (AF4C), as most of the top players - almost as if in unison - all agreed bloodless draws in the final round rather than fight for the title and the huge prize fund at stake - much to the chagrin of the sponsors, media and chess fans, who eagerly anticipated a thrilling shootout with tens of thousands of dollars up for grabs.

American GM Maurice Ashley decided to "do something about it," by organizing a Category 10 round-robin tournament at the famed Marshall Chess Club in New York with a twist: Draw offers can't be made before Move 50. The penalty for those who do take short draws at the Generation Chess International is a fine of 10 percent of their prize money and a tenth of the GMs appearance fees being donated to...the AF4C!

The line-up for this new event, is: GM J Ehlvest (Estonia), GM L Yudashin (Isreal), IM V Akobian (USA), GM L Christiansen (USA), IM E Perelshteyn (USA), IM M Bluvshtein (Canada), IM I Krush (USA), IM W Paschall (USA), IM A Simutowe (Zambia), FM S Muhammod (USA).


E Perelshteyn - L Yudasin
Generation Tournament (3), Caro-Kan Defence

1 e4 c6 2 d4 d5 3 Nc3 dxe4 4 Nxe4 Nd7 5 Ng5 Ngf6 6 Bd3 e6 7 N1f3 Bd6 8 Qe2 h6 9 Ne4 Nxe4 10 Qxe4 Nf6 11 Qe2 c5 12 dxc5 Bxc5 13 0-0 0-0 14 c4 b6 15 b3 Bb7 16 Bb2 Qe7 17 Rad1 Rfd8 18 Ne5 Kf8 19 Bg6 Qc7 20 Bxf7 Rxd1 21 Rxd1 Rd8 22 Rxd8+ Qxd8 23 Bxe6 Qe8 24 Bf5 Kg8 25 Bg6 Qa8 26 Nd7 Ne4 27 Bxe4 Bxe4 28 Qg4 1-0

2nd May, 2003

FROM the end of the Second World War, and indeed for up to a decade before, the old Soviet Union was the world's chess superpower: a mantle inherited by Russia after the break-up of the USSR.

The two biggest cities, Moscow and St Petersburg, remain the top centres of chess, and so their championships, both of which have just concluded, are of interest even though many of the top players did not take part.

After a series of qualification tournaments, the Moscow Championship ran from 16 April until 30 April: a tough 32-player knockout event that had among the field 15 GMs and 15 IMs. In a triumph for the seedings for the tournament, the top two players Vladimir Malakhov and Evgeny Najer won through to the finals after beating Sergey Shipov and Evgeny Vorobiov respectively in the semifinals. And in the best-of-four-game final, Najer defeated Malakhov by 2.5-1.5 to take the title.

By contrast, in St Petersburg they had a traditional all-play-all that ran 16 April until 28 April, though this was weaker, averaging just 2517 (category 11). Nevertheless, it was well known in Soviet times - and no doubt holds today - that "every Russian town" contains at least one almost unknown player strong enough to inflict damage on visiting grandmasters; and sure enough, IM Denis Yevseev took first place ahead of the chasing grandmaster pack with an unbeaten score of 8/12 to win his first title.


D Yevseev - K Aseev
St Petersburg Ch. (11), Catalan Opening

1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 e6 3 g3 Bb4+ 4 Bd2 Bxd2+ 5 Qxd2 d5 6 Bg2 0-0 7 Nf3 Qe7 8 0-0 Rd8 9 Rc1 b6 10 cxd5 exd5 11 Qf4 c6 12 Ne5 Bb7 13 Nd2 Nfd7 14 Ndf3 Nxe5 15 Qxe5 Qf8 16 Qc7 Rd7 17 Qf4 f6 18 Rc3 Na6 19 a3 Re8 20 Qd2 Nc7 21 e3 Nb5 22 Rc2 Nd6 23 Ne1 Ne4 24 Qb4 Qf7 25 Nd3 h5 26 Qb3 h4 27 a4 hxg3 28 hxg3 g5 29 a5 b5 30 a6 Ba8 31 Nb4 Qh5 32 Nxc6 Kg7 33 Nb4 Rh8 34 Rac1 Kg6 35 Qd3 Rdh7 36 Qd1 g4 37 Kf1 Ng5 38 Qd3+ f5 39 Nc6 Bxc6 40 Rxc6+ Kg7 41 Qxf5 1-0

1st May, 2003

IT'S always a bad sign when they start to name tournaments after you, as invariably this implies a memorial event held in your honour, as you rest peacefully six-feet under pushing up the daisies.

However, there are some notable exceptions, such as Miguel Najdorf, Viktor Korchnoi, and former world champion Anatoly Karpov. The recently completed fourth international "Karpov" tournament in Poikovsky (20-29 April) celebrates the life and achievements of the 12th world champion, and proved to be one of the strongest closed events held in Russia for some years.

The category 16 (Elo average 2632) round robin had an international line-up that was headed by three-time Russian champion Peter Svidler, and also included former French champion Joel Lautier, and former Russian champion Sergey Rublevsky. On tiebreak, Svidler took first place ahead of Lautier after both finished equal first on 6/9.

Despite his advancing years, Karpov, 52, continues to be an active player on the international circuit. Last year proved to be one of his best seasons in recent years, which culminated in a memorable win in New York over his nemesis, Garry Kasparov. The old fox arrived in Poilovsky hot-footed from Warsaw to officially open the event held in his honour, fresh from yet another conquest - this time a comfortable 6-2 victory over the young Polish GM Bartlomeij Maceija in a rapidplay match.


Final Standings: 1-2 P Svidler (Russia), J Lautier (France) 6/9; 3-4 S Rublevsky (Russia), V Zvjaginsev (Russia) 5.5; 5 A Onischuk (USA) 5; 6 G Vescovi (Brazil) 4.5; 7 V Bologan (Moldavia) 4; 8 Y Pelletier (Switzerland) 3.5; 9 S Lputian (Armenia) 3; 10 A Obodchuk (Russia) 2.


P Svidler - S Rublevsky
4th Karpov International (5), Sicilian Scheveningen

1 e4 c5 2 Nf3 e6 3 d4 cxd4 4 Nxd4 Nc6 5 Nc3 a6 6 Be2 d6 7 Be3 Nf6 8 f4 Bd7 9 Bf3 Rc8 10 Qe2 b5 11 a3 Qc7 12 g4 Nxd4 13 Bxd4 Qc4 14 Qxc4 Rxc4 15 0-0-0 h6 16 Rhe1 Be7 17 e5 dxe5 18 Bxe5 Bc8 19 Be2 Rc6 20 h4 0-0 21 g5 Nd7 22 Bd4 hxg5 23 hxg5 Bd6 24 Be3 Bxa3 25 Nxb5 Bxb2+ 26 Kxb2 axb5 27 Bxb5 Rc7 28 c4 Nc5 29 f5 exf5 30 Bf4 Rb7 31 Bd6 Be6 32 Bxc5 Rc8 33 Rxe6 fxe6 34 g6 Rbb8 35 Ba7 Rb7 36 Bf2 Kf8 37 Kb3 e5 38 Rd6 f4 39 Rd5 Rc6 40 Bc5+ 1-0

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