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USA's Top Daily Chess News Blog, Informative, Fun, and Positive

hosted by Chess Queen™ & 12th Women's World Chess Champion Alexandra Kosteniuk

 

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Vugar Gashimov Memorial Chess 2014: Carlsen Losses to both Caruana, Radjabov

Hello everyone,

The Vugar Gashimov Memorial Chess 2014 in Shamkir has hit the chess headlines like a bomb explosion. Not only did World Chess Champion Magnus Carlsen lose to Fabiano Caruana but he set a sort of record by suffering his second straight loss the very next round to Teimour Radjabov.

Round 1 and 2 began "normally" enough with the World Chess Champion beating Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Hikaru Nakamura. All other games were drawn in both the rounds. In Round 3, Sergey Karjakin worked hard to hold Magnus Carlsen to a draw and the latter was unable to convert a win. Nakamura, meanwhile, beat Mamedyarov. 


Round 4 and 5 - Fabiano Caruana and Teimour Radjabov delight fans by beating World Chess Champion Magnus Carlsen in successive rounds. That's how tough chess can be at the top level. Photos: Official website.

Disaster struck for Carlsen in Round 4. Playing Black against Caruana, he was at the receiving end with a slight fumble allowing Caruana to grind out a win. Carlsen blundered a pawn and then couldn't prevent a collapse. The other games were drawn. This is Magnus Carlsen's first loss in classical chess after winning the world champion title in November, 2013.

Today, in Round 5, the World Chess Champion was to face the horror of his second successive loss against Teimour Radjabov. Nakamura and Karjakin settled for a draw, while Nakamura and Karjakin are still playing. (More updates and games soon.) 

The Vugar Gashimov Chess Memorial is being held in Shamkir, Azerbaijan, from April 20-30 and is divided into two groups. The A Group features six players: World Champion Magnus Carlsen (2881), Fabiano Caruana (2783), Sergey Karjakin (2772), Hikaru Nakamura (2772), and the two Azeri players Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (2760) and Teimour Radjabov (2713). The B group includes ten players - top five from various countries and five from Azerbaijan.

Follow all the action live at the official website

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East Africa Open Chess Top Winners: Arthur Ssegwanyi, Elijah Emojong

Hello everyone,

Uganda's Arthur Ssegwanyi has won the East Africa Open Chess T\ournament from among 42 players by top-scoring with 6.5 in eight rounds. The event was held at the Kenyatta University over the Easter weekend. Arthur beat compatriot International Master (IM) Elijah Emojong to earn the first prize of US$1000 and the winner's trophy.

Emojong finished with 6 points to take home US$700, followed by another Ugandan Fide Master (FM) Harold Wanyama with 5.5 points winning US$500. Kenya’s national champion and KCB player, Candidate Master (CM) Ben Magana and former Olympian Kenneth Omolo tied on 5 points to share the 4th and 5th prize, with each getting US$250. Uganda’s CM Ivy Amoko won US$200 as the best lady.

In the open section played over 8 rounds, Steve Okeyo garnered 7.5 points to grab the winner’s trophy and Sh30,000. Collins Young, Givans Amunga, Victor Hongo and Amos Wakhungu each received Sh7,500 after tying in second position with 6.5 points.

Daphne Mwikali won the women's open section with 5.5 points, followed by Deshpande Sanjana 5 points, with Karania Saloni, Ann Kung’u, Gweyani Jumba of KCB and Mary Kung’u tying for 3rd place with 4 points each.

In the boys primary schools section, Sumit Deshpande won with 5 points followed by Aguda Lwanaga (4) and Sunil Subramaniam (3), whereas Krishi Shah won the girls section followed by Fathima Mohamed (3) and Arul Yuvika (3). In the secondary boys section, Subham Rai won with 5 points as Ian Gichuguma and Moses Maina got 5 and 4.5 points respectively. Saloni Karania (5) led Winnie Watani (3) in the women's secondary section. Kenyatta University was declared the best university team. The tournament was sponsored by the Kasparov Chess Foundation to the tune of US$5,000.


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World Chess Hall of Fame New Inductions - Maya Chiburdanidze, Paul Keres

Hello everyone,

We love to follow everything that's happening at the World Chess Hall of Fame in Saint Louis. Another ceremony is coming with two new inductions - Maya Chiburdanidze and Paul Keres. Here is the cool article on the upcoming event via the US Chess Federation website.


World Chess Hall of Fame Inductions Set for May 7
By Mike Wilmering

April 23, 2014 (Saint Louis, MO) – Four exceptional chess players will take their places in history when two are inducted into the World Chess Hall of Fame and two into U.S. Chess Hall of Fame during a ceremony on May 7, 2014. 

The World Chess Federation (FIDE) nominated and selected Maya Chiburdanidze and Paul Keres for the World Chess Hall of Fame. They join 19 other players who have received the honor since the World Chess Hall of Fame’s creation in 2001.

“These two remarkable players were luminaries in 20th century chess. Their legacies still impact the game today,” said Beatriz Marinello, FIDE Vice President.

The U.S. Chess Federation Hall of Fame Committee considers and sends candidates for the U.S. Chess Hall of Fame to the U.S. Chess Trust each year. The Trust votes on candidates, selecting Abraham Kupchik and Jacqueline Piatigorsky to join the 52 other players currently in the Hall of Fame.

“Kupchik and Piatigorsky both had immeasurable influence on the game of chess in the United States. We are thrilled to celebrate them as players and pioneers,” said Harold Winston, chairman of the U.S. Chess Federation Hall of Fame Committee.

Each player is permanently commemorated at the World Chess Hall of Fame with a plaque bearing their image and a biography of their notable contributions to the game.

“The 2014 induction ceremony will highlight these four fantastic chess players as well as the national and global cultural significance of the game. We look forward to welcoming the families and friends of the inductees, who will attend alongside some of today’s biggest names in chess,” said Susan Barrett, director of the World Chess Hall of Fame.

About the 2014 World Chess Hall of Fame Honorees
Maya Chiburdanidze (1961 – ): Maya Chiburdanidze’s introspective, exceptional play earned her U.S.S.R. Women’s Chess Championship at the young age of sixteen. The following year, she earned a place at the top of women’s chess, becoming the youngest woman at that time to win the Women’s World Championship when she defeated Nona Gaprindashvili. Chiburdanidze would defend her title four times, finally losing it in 1991 to Xie Jun.

A pioneer in women’s chess, Chiburdanidze was only the second woman to earn the title of Grandmaster in 1984. She was a member of the Soviet and later Georgian women’s teams that dominated the Women’s Chess Olympiads through the 1980s and 1990s, winning nine team gold medals and four gold medals on Board 1.

Paul Keres (1916 – 1975): A three-time Soviet chess champion, Keres was a Candidate for the World Chess Championship seven times and finished equal third in the 1948 World Chess Championship tournament. Keres’ near misses earned him the nickname the “crown prince of chess.”

Keres’ many tournament victories included ties for first in both AVRO 1938 (which he won on tiebreak) and the 1963 Piatigorsky Cup, two of the strongest tournaments ever held. He also played on gold medal winning teams representing the Soviet Union in the 1952 – 1964 Chess Olympiads. Additionally, Keres’ multi-volume series detailing his games ranks among the greatest best games collections ever written.

About the 2014 U.S. Chess Hall of Fame Honorees
Abraham Kupchik (1892 – 1970): Born in Brest (then a part of Russia), Abraham Kupchik immigrated to the U.S. in 1903 and was one of the strongest American players from 1914 to 1940. He shared first place with U.S. Champion Frank Marshall in 1923 at the 9th American Chess Congress and won the prestigious Manhattan Chess Club Championship thirteen times between 1913/14 and 1936/37. He earned second place at the Lake Hopatcong chess tournament behind José Raúl Capablanca and ahead of Géza Maróczy, Frank Marshall, and Edward Lasker.

In the 1935 Chess Olympiad, Kupchik earned team gold and individual bronze medals playing Board 3 for the U.S. His accomplishments also included playing Board 9 in the famed 1945 U.S.A.-U.S.S.R. radio match. 


Jacqueline Piatigorsky (1911 – 2012): A woman of many talents, Jacqueline Piatigorsky transformed American chess through her efforts as an organizer, philanthropist, and player. She won an individual bronze medal on Board 2 when she represented the U.S. in the first Women's Chess Olympiad in 1957. Piatigorsky is best remembered for organizing two of the greatest American chess tournaments: the 1963 and 1966 Piatigorsky Cups.

Committed to promoting youth chess, she created scholastic programs in Southern California in the early 1960s through the Piatigorsky Foundation. She also initiated the U.S. Junior Closed Chess Championship and provided support for the U.S. and U.S. Women’s Chess Championships.

About the World Chess Hall of Fame www.worldchesshof.org
The World Chess Hall of Fame (WCHOF) is a nonprofit organization committed to building awareness for the cultural and artistic significance of chess. It opened on September 9, 2011, in Saint Louis’s Central West End after moving from previous locations in New York and Miami.

The WCHOF is housed in an historic 15,900 square-foot building that includes three floors of galleries, the U.S. and World Chess Halls of Fame and the stylish Q Boutique. It sits immediately across Maryland Avenue from the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis, forming a “chess campus” that has been recognized as the chess capital of the United States as well as one of the game’s top international centers.
It is the only cultural institution of its kind in the world and the only solely chess-focused collecting institution in the U.S.

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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Gata Kamsky wins Philadelphia Chess Open 2014

Hello everyone,

GM Gata Kamsky has won the 8th Annual Philadelphia Chess Open that was held over the Easter week from April 16-20, 2014, at the Philadelphia Marriott Downtown, 1201 Market Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

GM Gata Kamsky finished clear 1st in the Open Section, finishing with 7.5 points, a half-point ahead of his nearest rival, GM Josh Friedel. Kamsky collected $6,581 for his efforts while Friedel collected $3,656. David Hua scored an International Master norm as well as finishing as the top player rated under 2400.

The final standings and prizes are now posted for all sections at the official website


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Zimbabwe 1st FIDE Rated Chess Event: GM Sergey Kasparov wins Easter Chess Open

Hello everyone,

Yes, they have chess apart from cricket in Zimbabwe now. A chess news update via Zimbabwe states GM Kasparov from Belarus has won the Easter Chess event - the first FIDE rated event in the country!

HARARE - Grandmaster Sergey Kasparov of Belarus won the closely -contested 2014 Zimbabwe Easter Open Fide Rated A Section which ended on Monday in Harare.

Kasparov, who narrowly avoided a defeat from Mozambican Candidate Master Persson Abrantes in the second round, had to fight a bruising battle to accumulate a total 5.5 points out of a possible seven.

The Belarusian won the title on a superior tie break after Botswana International Master IM Providence Oatlhotse, also finished on 5.5 points.

The two walked away with $1250 each.

International Master Rodwell Makoto, who led the Zimbabwe team, missed the first round but managed to finish on fourth position with five points, same points with Zambian Andrew Kayonde.

For their efforts Makoto and Kayonde pocketed $675 each.

South African GM designate IM Kenny Solomon shared the spoils on joint fifth position with Zimbabwean top players Elisha Chimbamu, Dion James Moyo and Thabo Elisha on 4.5 points each player winning $212.



“This is the first Fide rated event in the country and it has been a great success. Going forward, the Zimbabwe Chess federation is going to ensure that all chess players in our country are properly registered with Fide so that all tournaments will become rated,” Charles Kuwaza, the Zimbabwe Chess Fedration president, said after the event.

“We are also going to ensure that through our Chess In Schools programs, all our juniors will also properly register with the federation so that we do not miss talent out there.

“The Chess Federation wishes to extend its gratitude to all the sponsors, including the Holiday Inn who made this event a resounding success.” (http://www.dailynews.co.zw/)


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1000-Watt-Smile Chess Girl: Who's She, What has She Achieved Recently?

Hello Chess Blog friends,

You will have no problem answering these chess trivia questions if you've been reading Chess Blog regularly: Who's she and what has she achieved in chess recently?  Read this Chess Blog post for the answer. 

Photo: Nikolay Bochkarev/Women's World Rapid Chess in Khanty Mansiysk 2014.

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FIDE/ACP Anti-Cheating Chess Panel Meets at University of Buffalo, NY

Hello Chess Blog friends,

On April 21-23, the FIDE/ACP Anti-Cheating Committee met at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering of the University at Buffalo, NY, for finalizing the proposal to the General Assembly for the new Anti-Cheating regulations. The meeting was also an occasion for a first-hand evaluation, together with leading academic experts, of the sophisticated anti-cheating tool developed by Prof. Kenneth Regan. FIDE wishes to thank the University at Buffalo for hosting this very important meeting and for devoting its professors' time to this project. (Update via FIDE)

Left to Right: Konstantin Landa, Kenneth Regan, Israel Gelfer, Klaus Deventer, Yuri Garrett, Laurent Freyd


You can read all Chess Blog posts related to the subject of cheating in chess by clicking on the photo.

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Khetho Phemelo, Francis Onkemetse Win Botswana Open, Women's Chess Championships 2014

Hello everyone,



Some more latest chess tournament news via FIDE:

The 2014 Metropolitan National Chess Championships (Open & Women) were held on 18-21st April at the News Cafe, Mondioor, Gaborone.

The Championships were organized by the Botswana Chess Federation. Both sections were 10-player round robins.

Final standings (Women):

1 WCM Francis Onkemetse BOT 1701 Black Bishops - 7
2 WIM Modongo Boikhutso BOT 1839 Bonyonyo - 7
3 WIM Lopang Tshepiso BOT 1756 Mobile Chess Club - 6.5
4 WFM Botlhole Kgalalelo BOT 1780 En Passent - 5.5
5 WFM Francis Thapelo BOT 1761 BCA - 5
6 Leso Gorata BOT 1680 Poisonous Snakes - 5
7 Sokisi Malebogo BOT 0 Mater Spei - 3
8 Kiritjua Kandu BOT 0 - 2
9 Mbo Mabedi BOT 1553 - 2
10 Rebatenne Boitshepo BOT 1533 BDF SSKB - 2

Final standings (Open):

1 FM Khetho Phemelo BOT 2139 Poisonous Snakes - 8
2 CM Gaelafshwe Barileng BOT 2187 Mobile Chess Club - 7.5
3 CM Olebile Thato BOT 2150 En Passent - 7
4 FM Ndjovu Ignatius BOT 2212 Mobile Chess Club - 5
5 CM Notha Moakofi BOT 2096 Bonyonyo Chess Club - 4.5
6 Seane Tumelo BOT 1952 BIUST - 3.5
7 Boikanyo Cinky BOT 1999 Mobile Chess Club - 3
8 Dziilani Abel BOT 2092 Mobile Chess Club - 3
9 Kamara Abdul BOT 1891 Poisonous Snakes - 2.5
10 Mosenya Ndawana BOT 2020 Poisonous Snakes - 1


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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Allan Stig Rasmussen is Denmark National Chess Champion 2014

Hello everyone,


Allan Stig Rasmussen (Photo: Sigfred Haubro)

The latest chess news via FIDE:


The Danish Chess Championship was held on 12-21st April in Skorping. Ten players competed in the round robin tournament.

GM Allan Stig Rasmussen of Jetsmark Skakklub emerged national champion after concluding the event with 7/9 points, a full point ahead of the second placed GM Sune Berg Hansen.

Final standings:
1. GM Allan Stig Rasmussen, Jetsmark Skakklub - 7
2. GM Sune Berg Hansen, Helsingør - 6
3-4. GM Jacob Aagaard, Philidor and IM Jakob Vang Glud, Philidor - 5½
5-6. GM Lars Schandorff, Hillerød Skakklub and IM Rasmus Skytte, Århus/Skolerne - 4½
7-8. IM Mikkel Djernæs Antonsen, Næstved Skakklub and IM Mads Andersen, Skanderborg Skakklub - 3½
9. IM Simon Bekker-Jensen, Philidor - 3
10. FM Jakob Aabling-Thomsen, Brønshøj Skakforening - 2

Official website


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FIDE Women's World Rapid, Blitz Chess Championships 2014 begin in Khanty Mansiysk

Hello everyone,


The FIDE Women World Rapid and Blitz Championships 2014 will be held from 23rd to 28th April at the Ugra Chess Academy in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia.

The events will be both Swiss pairings tournaments and will be held over three days for Rapid (23-25th April) and three days for Blitz (26-28th April).

The Blitz will have fifteen rounds with each player playing with white and black against his paired opponent, Swiss event. The Rapid will be fifteen (15) rounds, with a single game for each round, Swiss event.

In the Blitz Championship, each player will have 3 minutes + 2 seconds additional time per move, starting from move 1.

In the Rapid Championship, each player will have 15 minutes + 10 seconds additional time per move, starting from move 1.

All players rated at least 2200 in any of the three FIDE rating lists (Standard, Blitz or Rapid) as at the 1st of January 2014 are eligible to participate in the Women World Blitz & Rapid Championships.

The Blitz & Rapid Championships are open to all the National Champions representing their National Chess Federation regardless of their title or rating.

Preliminary list of participants

The prize fund for each event (Rapid and Blitz) is $50,000. Top three finishers in each event will earn $12,000-9,000-6,000, respectively.

Georgian city Batumi organized the World Rapid and Blitz Championships in 2012. Antoaneta Stefanova (Rapid) and Valentina Gunina (Blitz) were the champions.

The 2014 FIDE Women World Rapid and Blitz Championships is concluding the chess spring in Khanty-Mansiysk, following the FIDE World Candidates Tournament and FIDE Women Grand Prix.

Tournament website


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Monday, April 21, 2014

Khanty Mansiysk Women's Chess GP Top Three Winners - Hou, Girya, Kosteniuk!

Hello Chess Blog friends,

12th Women's World Chess Champion and her successor meet once again for an exciting draw and the third and first place at the Khanty Mansiysk FIDE Grand Prix...

... and, Olga Girya in the background earning the second place with a very strong performance! Photos: Nikolay Bochkarev


Here's some exciting chess news from Khanty Mansiysk where the FIDE Women's GP has just concluded. The top three winners are reigning women's world chess champion Hou Yifan of China, Olga Girya of Russia (who picks up a GM norm) and 12th Women's World Chess Champion Alexandra Kosteniuk

Eleven rounds of exciting chess had Hou Yifan win the event with a strong 1.5 points, but the Russian girls were right behind all along. The last round witnessed a fierce struggle between Hou Yifan and Alexandra Kosteniuk, but the game was drawn.


Local Russian player Olga Girya proved to be the hero of the event playing above her rating and picking up an important GM norm. Alexandra Kosteniuk - with her fans cheering on twitter - played her usual killer chess to claim the unshared third place. She was the only one against whom Hou Yifan seemed to be under any pressure during the tournament. 


Two players tied for fourth with six points - Anna Muzychuk and Kateryna Lagno. 

FINAL STANDINGS


The prize distribution photos will be available soon. You can also look forward to a nice post by Chess Queen™ Alexandra Kosteniuk on her personal blog soon enough. Great round-wise reports by Alina l'Ami, along with nice photos by Nikolay Bochkarev, are available on the official website.


But, don't go away yet from Khanty Mansiysk! Tomorrow begins the Women's World Rapid Chess Championship followed by the Women's World Blitz Chess Championship. 

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Cool Chess Babe in White - You Know Her?

Hello everyone,

We love our chess girls... so, who's this chess babe in white? Don't forget to visit our collection of chess photo portraits including those for chess fashion at www.chesspics.com.





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Asian Blitz Chess: Yu Yangyi, Tan Zhongyi win Titles (Final Day Video)

Hello everyone,



Chinese Grandmasters Yu Yangyi and Tan Zhongyi have won the open and women's section at the Asian Blitz Chess Championship that concluded in Sharjah on 20th April. In the open section, Pentala Harikrishna and Ehsan Ghaem Maghami were second and third respectively. In the women's section Harika Dronavalli and Zhansaya Abdumalik were second and third respectively. Here is a video from the Sharjah Cultural and Chess Club: 




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Sunday, April 20, 2014

Easiest Chess Photo Trivia Ever: Name the World Champions... and Guess what are they Talking about!

Hello everyone,

You cannot get an easier chess trivia question this Sunday! Name the World Chess Champions... and, can you guess what they are talking about? ;)


This historic and lovely photo is brought to you via #1 chess photo website www.chesspics.com. Browse around and let us know which chess photos you like best.

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Vugar Gashimov 'Lives Again' as Shamkir Memorial Chess 2014 begins with World's Top Chess Stars

Hello everyone,



The Shamkir Chess 2014 tournament was officially opened on Saturday at the Heydar Aliyev Center in Shamkir, Azerbaijan. A touching opening ceremony included a short movie about Vugar Gashimov, for whom this tournament is a memorial. The drawing of lots resulted in the following pairings for the first round on Sunday: Carlsen-Mamedyarov, Nakamura-Caruana, Karjakin-Radjabov (A group), Wojtaszek-Durarbayli, Eljanov-Mamedov, Motylev-Abasov, Safarli-Huseinov and Wang-Bacrot (B group).

The opening ceremony, which was attended by about 150 people, started with a one-minute of silence for Vugar. A number of honorable guests paid due respect to Vugar's memory giving speeches, including the mayor of Shamkir, the Deputy Minister of Youth and Sport and the Vice President of the Azerbaijan Chess Federation.

A touching moment followed when the father of Vugar appeared on stage. Starting with “Dear good friends of Vugar, because that is what you are since you have come here”, he spoke proudly about how much his son had achieved in the short life he was given. There were hardly spectators who kept dry eyes.

He expressed his appreciation for the support he had received from the government and said: “he's not just my son, but the son of the motherland.”

Chairman of Supervisory Board at Synergy Group, Riyad Huseynov greeted all the participants. Emphasizing the importance of this tournament for whole chess community, Mr. Huseynov stated to be honored organizing Shamkir Chess 2014: "I assure all of you that the Organizing Committee of the tournament will do their best to make sure everything is on high level. I declare the tournament open. Let the strongest win."

One of Vugar's friends and former coach, Viorel Iordachescu, also gave a personal and emotional speech. “My collaboration and friendship with Vugar was the happiest period of my life. With the loss of Vugar I lost a part of me.” Iordachescu also introduced special stamps to the audience.

The drawing of lots was a rather simple affair, performed by Chief Arbiter Faik Gasanov. First the players of the B group came on stage, and then the players of the A group. They all had to choose a small trophy, and at the bottom they found their lot number. For the A group Magnus Carlsen appeared first on stage, and he picked number 1 which means he starts with two whites.
The ceremony finished with a dance performance, and after that there was a reception. (official website)


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Saturday, April 19, 2014

Young Chess Players Set to Compete in Honor of Defeating Breast Cancer

Hello everyone,


Charity and chess do go together. Here is a press release for such an event. We wish everyone the joy of chess and salute everyone promoting chess for a cause. 

Fremont, CA (PRWEB) April 19, 2014
Nearly every family has been touched by the disease known broadly as cancer. Every May, we set aside a date to honor our Mothers but this year, rather than just honoring Mothers, we can come together to help defend them against Breast Cancer at a chess tournament in Fremont, California. Chris Torres, the President of the Torres Chess and Music Academy feels that, "Chess is about making good choices. If you value your child's chess education and hate cancer, the choice is easy. Come to our tournament in Fremont on May third."


The Torres Chess and Music Academy is a nonprofit organization whose chess programs regularly produce top best scholastic chess players in the country. In 2013, Mission San Jose Elementary School, again, became the National Elementary Chess Champions. On May 3, 2014 the Torres Chess and Music Academy will be hosting a chess tournament in the fight against cancer at Mission San Jose Elementary School. All students who attend will receive awards and help raise money to fight breast cancer in honor of Mother's Day.

This year's tournament should raise even more money for breast cancer research thanks to a sponsorship by Steve and Kate's Camp. Steve and Kate have been running the best summer activity camps for children since 1980. Steve and Kate’s Camp lets campers choose activities such as stop motion animation, soccer in an inflatable stadium, rock climbing on a 30 foot wall, bread making, knitting with bamboo needles, music recording in custom vocal booths, and pie throwing. A Steve and Kate representative will be on hand at the chess tournament to answer any questions about their awesome summer programs.

The Torres Chess and Music Academy will also be well represented at the May 3 chess tournament. Many of the TCAMA’s top coaches will be on hand to provide chess analysis and to otherwise assist in making the tournament an educational experience for all attendees. In addition, the Torres Chess and Music Academy will be providing live music and will have plenty of information available about summer chess activities in the area.

Don't miss out on a great opportunity to participate in a fantastic chess event while celebrating our Mothers. For round times, and registration please visit the Torres Chess and Music Academy online.

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Kramnik Chess Trivia: What has the Russian Won, Where, When?

Hello everyone,


World Chess Champion Magnus Carlsen has confessed that he has been influenced by Russian GM Vladimir Kramnik's games. Kramnik has a very special place in chess history. Can you say, in the photograph, what has he won, where and when?




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Thailand Chess: GM Vallejo Pons wins 14th BCC Open 2014, GM Barbosa is second on tiebreak

Hi everyone,

Thailand has annually held the BCC Chess Open regularly. Here is a report by Alexander J. Klemm via the official website.


GM Vallejo Pons wins 14th BCC Open 2014, GM Barbosa is second on tiebreak
The last round of the 14th Bangkok Chess Club Open 2014 saw the much anticipated clashes GM Oliver Barbosa (7) vs. GM Francisco Vallejo Pons (7) on the first board, and GM Jan Gustafsson (6½) vs. GM Bartosz Socko (6½) on the second. Yet, their games were somewhat anticlimactic, as no risks were taken. The players agreed to strategic draws after two hours, assuring them all top rankings and prize money.

The Spanish Grandmaster and tournament number one seed GM Francisco Vallejo Pons wins with 7½ points. Congratulations to ‘Paco’ and many thanks for his return to the BCC Open after his first appearance in 2011. We hope he will come back again next year to defend his title. The runner-up is GM Oliver Barbosa, who also reached an impressive 7½ points. GM Barbosa also won the Blitz tournament for the second year running, against stiff competition. Congratulations to the mighty Filipino for his outstanding performance. GM Jan Gustafsson, IM Qingnan Liu and GM Bartosz Socko all reached a very solid 7 points, putting them in 3rd to 5th place.

Round 9 results at top boards:
GM Oliver Barbosa (7) ½ – ½ GM Francisco Vallejo Pons (7)
GM Jan Gustafsson (6½) ½ – ½ GM Bartosz Socko (6½)
GM Suat Atalik (6) ½ – ½ GM Darwin Laylo (6)
GM John Paul Gomez (6) ½ – ½ GM Marat Dzhumaev (6)
GM M.R. Venkatesh (6) 0 – 1 IM Qingnan Liu (6)

Final ranking of top players after round 9:
1-2 (7½ pts.): GM Francisco Vallejo Pons, GM Oliver Barbosa
3-5 (7 pts.): GM Jan Gustafsson, IM Qingnan Liu, GM Bartosz Socko
6-12 (6½ pts.): GM John Paul Gomez, GM Suat Atalik, GM Marat Dzhumaev, IM Aleksandar Wohl, IM Roy Saptarshi, IM Rolando Nolte, GM Monika Socko

A GM norm was achieved by fourth-placed IM Qingnan Liu from China and a WIM norm by Ying Zhu (5 ½), also from China. Best lady player is Polish GM Monika Socko (6½). Best juniors are the Chinese youngsters Yan Liu (6) and Xiongjian Peng (6), as well as Richi Sardana (5½) from Australia. Congratulations to these players for their well-earned successes.

In the Challenger category, this year’s 14th BCC Open champion is Leonardo Alidani from the Philippines. He scored six points, as did his fellow countryman Marvin Ting, who is second based on tiebreak. Thotsaporn Thanatipanonda (THA), Kumar Samuel (IND) and Trong Binh Phan (VIE) scored 5½ points, which puts them on 3rd to 5th place.

Please visit chess-results.com for complete rankings, results and further details about the tournament.

A very big thank you goes to the 210 players from Asia and around the world for their hard-fought games and the many chess fans who followed the action in the playing hall and live online.

We thank our sponsors Thai Bev, Univentures, PYN Fund Management, Tourism Authority of Thailand, Chess4Thai, and the marvelous playing venue hosted by the Dusit Thani Bangkok Hotel. The tournament could not happen without their wonderful and generous support.

Many thanks also to all the members of the dedicated BCC Open tournament team who kept the tournament running smoothly at all times.

From Alexandra Kosteniuk's
www.chessblog.com
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University Chess in Pakistan: Karachi Varsity Retains Title

Hello everyone,

Some chess news from South Asia: FIDE reports on the Pakistan University chess: The Pakistan Chess Federation in collaboration with the country's Higher Education Commission organised the All-Pakistan Inter Universities Chess Championships from 13th April to 17th April in Faisalabad, the country's third biggest city. A record number of 24 universities took part with three members each and a reserve players. 

Top-seed Karachi University beat their arch rival Punjab University in the final to win the title for the second year in a row. Although the latter had better ranked players in its team. The University of Veterinary Sciences squeezed into third place.

The Inter University Tournament has become a regular feature to take place as a prelude to the National Chess Championships in Pakistan every year. Based on the individual scores on respective tables, three top players are selected to give them a berth in the country's premier National Chess Championships which for 2014 are going to take place in Lahore from 25th April. In Faisalabad, the qualifiers were Awad of Karachi University, Arqam of Punjab University and Ahmad Ali from Pakistan Institute of Engineering and Applied Sciences. *Find more photos at FIDE


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US Chess #1 Hikaru Nakamura sponsored by RedBull!

Hello everyone,

The #1 US player Hikaru Nakamura has a new and exciting sponsor: Redbull. "Always try to win at all costs", he says on his page on the Redbull website. Nakamura is currently the #8 player in the World.

Here is the Red Bull page for Hikaru Nakamura! *below is the bio and one of the photos on the page. 




Hi, my name is Hikaru Nakamura. My discipline ischess. My friends call me Hikaru, but I’ve been known by my handles: Smallville, CapilanoBridge, and Star Wars. I was born on 9 December 1987 in Osaka, Japan. My special talent istrying to win at all costs. My philosophy of life is live every moment, every game as though it is your last. The most important person in my life ismy mother. My favourite food ispasta. My favourite music is a mix of rock and folk/indie.

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