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News

Chess Week on Twitter

User Rating: / 0
Written by Administrator   
Thursday, 27 September 2012
Pogonina.com offers you a selection of some of the most informative chess tweets from last week. All the fresh chess news in one short post:

Muzychuk is leading the Women's Grand Prix in Ankara after 9 rounds

http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit270901.jpg
Carlsen, Aronian, Karjakin, Caruana, Anand and Vallejo are playing in Bilbao Masters Final
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit270902.jpg
Sergey Karyakin: Today I have proved that I still know a bit about playing chess. Tomorrow is a rest day, and then a game against the World Champion! Life is not getting easier! :)

An expert opinion about endgame skills of MC

http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit270903.jpg
Nice picture
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit270904.jpg
http://www.pogonina.com/images//arobasket.jpg

Quote of the week
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit270905.jpg
Congrats, Sam!
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit270906.jpg
The message is understandable, but why pick on Siberia?
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit270907.jpg
The proper way to greet chess players at home
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit270908.jpg
Hope for the best, prepare for the worst
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit270909.jpg
Who will be the new ECF President?
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit270910.jpg

Have we missed some of the best tweets? You can contribute to our next top-10 stories chart by retweeting the post you like and adding @Pogonina to the message so that we can see it.


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Last Updated ( Thursday, 27 September 2012 )
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FIDE Grand Prix: Call for a Fair Selection Process

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Written by Administrator   
Wednesday, 26 September 2012


Originally published at ChessBase

Womens chess is relatively neglected as compared to mens. If you ask a typical chess fan what the Womens Grand Prix is and who qualifies for it, the answer will usually be silence.
 

As of now, the FIDE Womens Grand Prix is a series of round robin tournaments with nice cash prizes and opportunities to increase ones mastery by facing other strong grandmasters. One of the main goals of holding these events is to determine the Challenger, i.e., a female player who will face the winner of the Womens World Cup for the Womens World Chess Champion title. Therefore, in some sense the Grand Prix is the semi-final of the World Championship, because winning it entitles one to play the final match for the crown.
 

It is hard to follow the Womens World Chess Championship Cycle, so here is a quick reminder:
 

  1. The current champion is Hou Yifan from China. She has also secured the first place in the Womens Grand Prix series.

  2. The Womens World Chess Championship will take place in November 2012 in Khanty-Mansyisk, Russia. If Hou Yifan defends her title there, she will play in 2013 a match against the lady (Challenger) who finishes second in the Womens Grand Prix series. If Hou loses her title in November, she will challenge the new champion, because she has qualified for the match via the Grand Prix series.


Naturally, one would expect only the best of the best players to qualify for the Grand Prix circuit on the basis of their career achievements and playing strength. However, lets take a look at the list of the participants and indicate on what grounds the players have been invited:

 

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Last Updated ( Wednesday, 26 September 2012 )
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Survey among Top Players about Time Control

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Written by Administrator   
Tuesday, 25 September 2012
Open letter, published as it is:

 

 

 

The Association of Chess Professionals has recently conducted a survey (composed of 4 questions) among Top 30 players in the world (as of 1 July 2012) about the time control in World Championships.


We have received 28 answers from:
 

Adams Michael, Anand Viswanathan, Aronian Levon, Bologan Viktor, Carlsen Magnus, Caruana Fabiano, Dominguez Perez Leinier, Fressinet Laurent, Gashimov Vugar, Gelfand Boris, Grischuk Alexander, Ivanchuk Vassily, Jakovenko Dmitry, Jobava Baadur, Kamsky Gata, Karjakin Sergey, Kramnik Vladimir, Leko Peter, Mamedyarov Shakhriyar, Nakamura Hikaru, Nepomniachtchi Ian, Ponomariov Ruslan, Radjabov Teimour, Riazantsev Alexander, Svidler Peter, Tomashevsky Evgeny, Wang Hao, Wojtaszek Radoslaw.


Question 1:

Which of the following 2 time controls should be used in final stages of World Championship Cycles?

a) 120'/40+60'/20+(15'/SD+30") - 120 minutes for 40 moves, followed by 60 minutes for 20 moves, followed by 15 minutes, with an increment of 30 seconds starting from move 61

b) (100'/40+50'/20+15'/SD)+30" - 100 minutes for 40 moves, followed by 50 minutes for 20 moves, followed by 15 minutes, with an increment of 30 seconds starting from move 1


Results:
9 voted for A
17 voted for B
1 player equally liked both proposals
---

1 player was against both proposals


Question 2:

The following 2 rapid time controls are widely used. Which of them should be used in World Rapid Championships?

a) 15'+10" - 15 minutes for a game with 10 seconds increment
b) 25'+10" - 25 minutes for a game with 10 seconds increment

Results:
8 voted for A
19 voted for B

---

1 player was against both proposals


Question3:

The following 3 blitz time controls are widely used. Which of them should be used in World Blitz Championships? Please sort the possibilities from best to worst.
a) 5'
b) 3'+2"

c) 4'+2"

Results:
Answer A: 2 first places; 2,5 second places; 23,5 third places
Answer B: 16 first places; 9,5 second places; 2,5 third places
Answer C: 10 first places; 16 second places; 2 third places

Remark:

0,5 arises when a player doesn't give a preference between 2 possibilities.


Question 4:

The following 5 time controls are widely used for sudden death games. Please sort them from best to worst.

a) 5'-4' (white has 5 minutes, black has 4 minutes; white has to win)
b) 6'-5' (white has 6 minutes, black has 5 minutes; white has to win)

c) (4'-3')+1" (white has 4 minutes, black has 3 minutes, an increment of 1 second is added starting from move 1; white has to win)

d) (5'-4')+1" (white has 5 minutes, black has 4 minutes, an increment of 1 second is added starting from move 1; white has to win)

e) (5'/60-4'/60) + (0'/SD+3") (white has 5 minutes, black has 4 minutes, an increment of 3 seconds is added starting from move 61; white has to win)

Results:
Not all out of 28 players answered that question.

The opinions were widely spread, however it is still possible to take a conclusion, that the option 5'-4' (white has 5 minutes, black has 4 minutes; white has to win) was clearly preferable, whereas all other 4 options were at more or less the same level of support.


Recommendations:

Based on the obtained results the ACP recommends:

1) to change the official time control used in the World Championship match/tournament, Candidates matches, Grand Prix to:
(100'/40+50'/20+15'/SD)+30" - 100 minutes for 40 moves, followed by 50 minutes for 20 moves, followed by 15 minutes, with an increment of 30 seconds starting from move 1

2) to use in the World Rapid Championship:
25'+10" - 25 minutes for a game with 10 seconds increment

3) to use in World Blitz Championship:
3'+2" - 3 minutes for a game with 2 seconds increment

4) to use 5'-4' (white has 5 minutes, black has 4 minutes; white has to win) for sudden death games


Acknowledgements:

The ACP would like to thank all the top players for taking part in the survey and for all additional comments that we have received.

Bartlomiej Macieja

ACP General Secretary

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Last Updated ( Tuesday, 25 September 2012 )
 

Olympiad 2012: In the Middle

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Written by Administrator   
Tuesday, 25 September 2012
http://www.pogonina.com/images/stories/1331194621_b_natalja-pogonina-2.jpg
by Natalia Pogonina for her
Chess.com Tuesday column


Round 5 was the last one before the first rest day. We were paired with the co-leader, France (8 match points). I had a free day. When everyone left the hotel, the Internet finally started working fine. I managed to watch a movie online and then went to the playing hall myself to cheer up my teammates. At first we were under some pressure, but then important victories came on boards 3 and 4. Tatiana Kosintseva drew Elmira Skripchenko on board 1. The game between Sophie Milliet and Valentina Gunina was a real thriller. Valya messed up in the opening and had a lost position. Then her opponent failed to find the mating attack and even got a worse position. After the time control was reached the the position was objectively drawn, but Gunina started playing too ambitiously and lost. We won the match 2.5-1.5.


olart1.jpg

In a good mood before the match

The Chinese team convincingly beat India 3.5-0.5. Another good time to remind you that Humpy Koneru wasnt participating in the Olympiad.

 



Every day there was press conferences with players, coaches and other interesting people. This time all the three Polgar sisters reunited:

olart2.jpg

At the Istanbul Olympiad there was a video broadcast from the playing hall with audio commentary. Additionally, many websites used to have their own online commentary. We also had a very detailed live report on both the Open and Womens sections each day with pics and game updates. Check out Pogonina.com if you are interested in re-living those moments.
 

We decided to spend the rest day before a critical match vs. China by visiting the downtown of Istanbul Sultanakhmet square. Valentina Gunina preferred to stay at the hotel, but we were joined by the captain of the mens team Yuri Dokhoian. To become more familiar with the place, we didnt take a taxi and traveled by subway and tram.

olart3.jpg

On our way

We had a nice meal at a local restaurant and went sight-seeing:

olart4.jpg

Can you guess the average rating of the people on the picture? :)

Then we took a walk on the wharf and returned home by about 5 p.m. Time to prepare for our match with the Chinese ladies!

The rest day flew by quickly and entertainingly. We had a one match point advantage over China, so we werent in a must-win situation. At the previous Olympiad we barely won the match, but at the World Championship11 the powerful Chinese girls crushed our team 4-0. Naturally, we were rather motivated to do well this time.

The confrontation went tough for us. Tatiana Kosintseva quickly lost an opening duel against Hou Yifan. I messed up the moves and got an unclear position instead of a better one. The game ended in a draw. Sasha Kosteniuk had a slightly worse endgame, but managed to hold. Nadya won a piece, but it was not so easy to convert it. Kudos to her for winning the game. The match ended in a tie: 2-2.



olart5.jpg

Sergey Rublevsky is cunningly looking at the Chinese players

olart6.jpg

The Chinese ladies are having a friendly chat

Poland defeated Serbia and caught up with us on match points. An interesting endgame occurred on board 4:


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Last Updated ( Tuesday, 25 September 2012 )
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Guess the Players-73

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Written by Administrator   
Monday, 24 September 2012


a) Can you name the players?
b) Make an intelligent guess at their average FIDE rating

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Last Updated ( Monday, 24 September 2012 )
 

Sunday Puzzle-21

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Written by Administrator   
Sunday, 23 September 2012
Image
Puzzle courtesy of Barry R. Clarke, columnist for The Daily Telegraph and international puzzle expert

Shilly Chalet

At Jollywobble holiday camp, chalet numbers one, two and three were awaiting the six guests. Two men were to occupy each chalet, however, they had difficulty agreeing about the sharing arrangements. Martin refused to take the end chalet number one after the front door fell off. When Keith noticed that the toilet was missing, he rejected chalet number two next door. Then Neil turned down chalet number three next door to number two on the grounds that it smelt like a cesspit.  Eventually, Gordon shared with neither Martin nor Ian. Colin roomed with neither Keith nor Neil. Ian shared with neither Keith nor Colin. Also, Neil found that he was next door to neither Gordon nor Ian. Which pairs occupied which chalets?

Related reading:
Sunday Puzzle-20
Sunday Puzzle-19
Sunday Puzzle-18
Sunday Puzzle-17

Sunday Puzzle-16
Sunday Puzzle-15
Sunday Puzzle-14
Sunday Puzzle-13
Sunday Puzzle-12
Sunday Puzzle-11
Sunday Puzzle-10

Sunday Puzzle-9
Sunday Puzzle-8
Sunday Puzzle-7
Sunday Puzzle-6
Sunday Puzzle-5
Sunday Puzzle-4
Sunday Puzzle-3
Sunday Puzzle-2
Sunday Puzzle


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Last Updated ( Sunday, 23 September 2012 )
 

Chess Tactics

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Written by Administrator   
Saturday, 22 September 2012
http://www.pogonina.com/images//zhaoju.jpg
Zhao Xue (2549) - Ju Wenjun (2528), 2012
White to move


Zhao Xue played a remarkable move for White and went on to win the game in a brilliant style. Can you find it?

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Last Updated ( Saturday, 22 September 2012 )
 

Chess Week on Twitter

User Rating: / 0
Written by Administrator   
Thursday, 20 September 2012
Pogonina.com offers you a selection of some of the most informative chess tweets from last week. All the fresh chess news in one short post:

How will Viswanathan Anand perform in his first event after the World Chess Championship match?
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit200901.jpg
Good luck to the newly-elected title-holders!
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit200902.jpg
Ahead of Jobava, Areschenko, Malakhov, Nisipeanu and Atalik
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit200903.jpg
The USCL is one of the most exciting US chess events
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit200904.jpg
Interesting poll of top players on classical, rapid, blitz and sudden death time controls
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit200905.jpg
Chinese League - don't miss it!
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit200906.jpg
Money doesn't smell
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit200907.jpg
Interesting interview with winner of two Olympic gold medals
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit200908.jpg
Women's FIDE Grand Prix is taking place in Ankara
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit200909.jpg
Back to school
http://www.pogonina.com/images//twit200910.jpg

Have we missed some of the best tweets? You can contribute to our next top-10 stories chart by retweeting the post you like and adding @Pogonina to the message so that we can see it.

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Last Updated ( Thursday, 20 September 2012 )
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Bobby Fischer's Handwritten Notes (1970) on sale

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Written by Administrator   
Wednesday, 19 September 2012
http://www.pogonina.com/images//bobby-fischer-main.jpg

Here is the description of the lot (almost 8 days left until the end of the auction; current price - £2167):

To whom it may concern,

These are 36 original handwritten pages and 3 photocopied pages of Bobby Fischers analysis of several chess games held in Herceg Novi in Yugoslavia in 1970. I found these notes amongst my Fathers belongings after he passed.

My late father Slobodan Bodo Stojnic was managing director of the company that organized the tournament and paid the prizes. The company (original name: ZAVOD ZA IZDAVANJE UDZBENIKA SR BiH) published school books and a couple of chess books. Bobby Fisher, Mihail Talj, Tigran Petrosyan, Bronstein, Gligoric and others were regular visitors in our home.

One time, in our home in Sarajevo, there were four of us in the dining room; Bobby Fischer, Tigran Petrosyan, my father and me. Tigran was pretty much deaf and he wore a hearing aid, a huge one for todays standards. Tigran and Bobby started a blitz match. In the middle of the match, when the board was still full, Bobby went to the kitchen for a glass of water, and Tigran took the opportunity to steal one of Bobbys pawns. I then witnessed something unbelievable: on the way back, when Bobby was more than two meters away from the chess board, he noticed that the pawn was missing!

After that, my father asked Bobby to put his signature on the wall of my sister's bedroom. There was a square, maybe 10 x 10cm with wallpaper removed. The signatures of Petrosian, Tal, Bronstein and others were already there. Although there was enough space in the lower part of the square, Bobby refused to sign BELOW the others, he said "I AM THE BEST AND I CAN SIGN ONLY ABOVE THE OTHERS". I then had to take off a few centimetres of wallpaper from the top of the square, and Bobby put his signature there. Unfortunately, this wall was destroyed during the war in Bosnia. A book containing all matches from Hercegnovi tournament was published and if I remember correctly, Bobby was paid 2 million Yugoslav Dinars for his part.

I confirm these pages are genuine as written by Bobby Fischer.


You can view all the other pages here - it's a great read!

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Last Updated ( Wednesday, 19 September 2012 )
 

Olympiad 2012: Way to the Top

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Written by Administrator   
Tuesday, 18 September 2012
http://www.pogonina.com/images/stories/1331194621_b_natalja-pogonina-2.jpg
by Natalia Pogonina for her
Chess.com Tuesday column


World Chess Olympiad is one of the most exciting and classical tournaments. Its importance is overshadowed only by the individual World Chess Championship. It is both a fantastic festival and a place where serious confrontations take place, while each half-point can affect the final standings of the team. Nearly 160 federations, thousands of players this is an amazing event! In fact, there are two Olympiads Open and Womens. The winners in each of the sections are called Olympic champions and win medals and a cup. There is also a special trophy awarded to the strongest chess nation Gaprindashvili Cup (based on the sum of points of the countrys teams in the Open and Womens sections). Also, there are board prizes and category awards for teams within a certain average rating bracket that didnt win the main trophies. I will describe that in detail later.
 

For us the Chess Olympiad started in advance. From the 16th to the 27th of August we had a training session in Moscow Oblast at an Olympic base which is usually used by swimmers and gymnasts. Along with us some members of the Paralympics team were training there too. For me the main goal was to relax after the Russian Superfinal and polish some of the opening variations. As a fan of active sports, I had many ideas in mind, but they were unrealized. The reason was that I managed to injure my foot while playing soccer, and I am still suffering from it. I was taught to walk using crutches. Thanks to the doctors of the gymnastic team, I didnt miss the Olympiad, although I was walking like a lame duck in the playing hall. Anyway, the assistance of the medical workers has helped me more or less avoid unnecessary anxiety and psychological discomfort.
 

We arrived in Istanbul on August 27th. The hotel where we stayed was located near the airport. At first I was afraid that noise would be a problem, but the opportunity to watch the planes was more than a sufficient compensation Laughing


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Last Updated ( Tuesday, 18 September 2012 )
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