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Sunday, September 2, 2012

Istanbul Chess Olympiad 2012 R5 - Armenia, Russia in Joint Lead in Open; Russia in Sole Lead in Women's Section

Chess blog for latest chess news and chess trivia (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2012

Hi everyone,

Round 5 at the 40th Chess Olympiad in Istanbul saw match-pairing more in keeping with team strengths. On the first match table, two-time Chess Olympiad Champion Armenia beat defending champions Ukraine. World #2 Levon Aronian beat Vassily Ivanchuk with a nice exchange-up and follow-up tactics which were enough to win the match for Armenia as the other games were drawn 2,5-1,5. 

Russia comfortably beat Hungary on the second board on the basis of Alexander Grischuk's attacking win over Zoltan Almasi with a score of 2,5-1,5. Meanwhile, the Azeri and Chinese teams beat Canada and Iran 3,5-0,5 even as France lost to Croatia 2,5-1,5. USA drew with the Czech Republic.

In the Women's Section Russia beat France 2,5-1,5 to take sole lead in the tournament. Serbia beat Bulgaria 2,5-1,5. Poland beat Greece, Slovakia won with against Latvia. Harika Dronavalli made a good start for India in the match with China as she held the World Champion Hou Yifan to a draw with black pieces. But all the other three boards lost and China cruised to a nice win. Georgia and Ukraine, as well as Slovenia and Israel, tied their matches with draws on all four boards.

The US suffered a devastating 3-1 loss against Vietnam who gave up an average of 158 rating points to the Americans. Sunday is a rest day. Monday is a crucial sixth round which could well make or break the teams' fortunes in the event. 

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