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Carlsen Wins Game 9, Needs 1/2 Point to become World Chess Champion 2013
Chess Blog for Daily Chess News and Trivia (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2013

Hello everyone,

Game 9 at the FIDE World Chess Championship Match on Thursday had absolutely everyone on the edge. World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand was at his attacking best with a Kingside onslaught, but he faltered and the 28-move game gave World No. 1 a three-point lead in the Match.

Viswanathan Anand changed his opening move to go with 1.d4 which was greeted with an enthusiastic applause in the playing hall. The challenger and world’s top rated player responded with his trusted Nimzo-Indian defence.

Anand repeated the line that he has already used in the match with Vladimir Kramnik in Bonn 2008. Black was obviously well prepared, as he made a rare recapture on move 7 (exd5 instead of more common Nxd5) and then immediately closed the Queenside with 8…c4.

The experts from the Norwegian lounge claimed that this line was analysed among the members of their national team.

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Anand got an impressive pawn mass rolling towards the Black King, while Carlsen created a passed pawn on b3, deep within opponent’s territory. Anand spent around 30 minutes to calculate complicated lines before going all in with 23.Qf4.

White went directly for the checkmate and Black promoted a new queen on b1. However, playing too quickly, Anand erred with 28.Nf1, which effectively concluded the game after Carlsen’s reply 28…Qe1.

Carlsen is now leading 6-3 and needs only one draw in the remaining three games to claim the title of FIDE World Chess Champion.

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Thu, 21 Nov 2013 15:21:00 +0000
The second visit of FIDE President to Tunisia


On November 10th Kirsan Ilyumzhinov arrived to Tunisia. In the airport of Monastir he was welcomed by the President of Tunisian CF Mr. Yousri Daly.



In Monastir President Ilyumzhinov met with the Governor of the province Mr. Habib Sethom, later the Minister of the Tourism Mr. Jamel Gamra joined the discussion.


Then the guests participated in the closing ceremony of Arab Countries Chess Festival. The FIDE Continental President Mr. Lakhdar Mazouz also joined to the ceremony.




Also the FIDE President met with the heads of the Ministry of Sports and Youth - Mr. Adel Zaremdine, Ministry Chief of Cabinet, and Mr. Makran Shushen, General Director of Structure. The both sides discussed the issues of beneficial cooperation. Tunisian CF intends to bid for World Seniors Chess Championship, 2016 World Schools Chess Championship and one of 2017 World Children's Chess Championships. It was noted that Tunisia has good conditions for holding the official competitions: developed infrastructure, hotels close to the sea with acceptable prices, location, etc. Considering long distances in Africa, absence of sufficient number of direct flights and high prices of tickets and accommodation, FIDE President suggested to hold the Continental Internet Blitz Chess Championship. He will allocate the money for the prize fund and other organization expenses.



In addition, taking into account the request of the President of Tunisian CF of aid for holding the large tournaments, President Ilyumzhinov has decided to provide the assistance in the amount of 100 chess clocks.

After the Sports Ministry the FIDE President visited the office of Tunisian Chess Federation. This is the second official visit of Kirsan Ilyumzhinov to Tunisia since the Presidential Board meeting held in November 1997.



Tue, 12 Nov 2013 07:13:11 +0000
3 Reasons Why Magnus Carlsen Will Become World Champion
Editor's Note: This is the first of two special world championship preview pieces - look for tomorrow's piece by GM Parimarjan Negi of India. Published as "News" to keep our regularly featured article content on the homepage, here GM Jon Ludvig Ha...
Tue, 05 Nov 2013 11:09:10 -0800
Anand – Carlsen 2013, seconds preview (#9)
Official logo of the FIDE World Chess Championship Match 2013

Official logo of the FIDE World Chess Championship Match 2013

Previous read: Anand – Carlsen 2013, Chennai preview (#10)

Nine days are left to the start of the World Chess Championship 2013 between the defending champion Viswanathan Anand and the challenger Magnus Carlsen. Chessdom continues the daily previews with a look at both players teams.

Very often the team of seconds, i.e. the professional chess players helping for match and individual game preparation during a World Chess Championship, has played a major role in an outcome of a battle. The battle of seconds was getting to epic levels in the 80′s and 90′s, where a team of analysts could reach 50+ people, Grandmasters or International Masters, highly specialized in a certain opening or game element. Now with computers and 3000 + ELO monsters , the need for so many players is obsolete. The pattern is to aim for a dynamic, compact team, that can decode the opponent’s abilities and weaknesses, and dedicate some sleepless nights to find the subtle element that can turn the match around.

Interestingly, Anand has acknowledged himself in interview for Indian media that Carlsen has been part of his team of seconds in the past. “He had already helped me before, in Bonn and Mexico. Very few people can simulate a real tournament situation like Magnus can. We played a lot of blitz, and I felt good, because I was able to test a lot of areas I was unfamiliar with before. With Magnus you can test any position, because he can play almost any position,” Anand said in praise of the youngster.

But things have changed since then and now Anand and Carlsen will face each other on the board. Although surrounded by the usual speculation, some team members and some substitutions are certain in both camps.

Info: Official website / Live games / Live games (2)Play online at Chessdom Arena

Note: All the action of Carlsen – Anand 2013 will be live daily on Chessdom with computer analysis and commentary by IM Aman Hambleton, IM Tania Sachdev, and GM Vidit Gujrathi (more on the team later).

Sandipan Chanda

GM Sandipan Chanda, the new addition to team Anand

Anand seconds for WCC 2013

The current champion Viswanathan Anand has had a stable team for the past several championships – Peter Heine Nielsen, Rustam Kasimdzhanov, Surya Ganguly and Radoslaw Wojtaszek. This brought him the titles in Bonn, Sofia, and Moscow. However, with India WCC on the horizon, things started changing. The Danish chess player Peter Heine Nielsen will not be on Anand’s team, as he was helper of Magnus Carlsen during the Candidates tournament. As Nielsen felt moral obligation to both players, he decided to stay out of the match. Rustam Kasimdzhanov, who is well known for bringing chess success as coach both on individual level and team level (for example Germany in 2011) has decided to take a break saying, “I think three World championship matches are enough for me, I deserved some rest”.

Ganguly and Wojtaszek both will continue on Anand’s team. They seem to have coordinated schedule with Anand – Ganguly participated in the strong Indonesia Open and Wojtaszek was spotted at the Russian Championship, while at the same time Anand said he is having a “relaxed schedule” before the final preparation.

Another team member was confirmed for Anand recently. It is GM Sandipan Chanda, who was also seen to follow Anand’s schedule and participated in Indonesia Open. He was part of a special camp of Anand in Germany together with Ganguly and several unrevealed Grandmasters.

With this the facts around the seconds of Anand are complete. However, days before the World Championship rumors abound the chess circles. Many say that the Italian Grandmaster Fabiano Caruana has been spotted much too often with Anand during the Tal Memorial 2013. Given the importance of the match, names as Kramnik or Giri have also surfaced, but without any plausible confirmation yet.

Anand seconds: (confirmed) Ganguly, Sandipan, Wojtaszek; (rumored) many

Jon Ludvig Hammer

GM Jon Ludvig Hammer will be helping Magnus Carlsen

Carlsen seconds for WCC 2013

Carlsen’s seconds for the World Chess Championship 2013 are even more difficult to be decoded. The Norwegian has only one certain second, and this is his good friend Jon Ludvig Hammer.

Among the many rumored players to help Carlsen is his friend Laurent Fressinet who is rapid expert (winning Mind Games rapid) and blitz expert (winning Idf blitz). They have been both filmed with Carlsen playing friendly blitz games, and despite the joking Carlsen saying “too weak, too slow”, it is possible that he helped Carlsen with specific opening preparation in case of tiebreak

Kasparov has openly offered help to Carlsen, but given the fast development of chess it is very improbable Carlsen to accept.

From that point on, Carlsen’s list of seconds is surrounded by mystery. But while Anand is very loyal to his team members that brought him success in the past, Carlsen is likely to try to find something new and exciting to surprise the current World Champion.

Carlsen seconds (confirmed) Jon Ludvig Hammer; (plausible) Fressinet; (rumored) few
Wed, 30 Oct 2013 10:05:56 +0000
FIDE World Youth Chess Championships to set participation record

The UAE Chess Federation and Al Ain Chess Club, under the auspices of FIDE, are organizing World Youth Chess Championships 2013 (Under 8, 10,12, 14, 16 and 18 years old – open and girls) scheduled for 17 (arrival) – 29 (departure) December 2013 in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates.

1640 players from 95 countries have already registered for the World Youth Chess Championships. Registrations are open until 17th November.

Last year in Maribor, Slovenia, participation record was achieved with 1584 players from 91 countries.

FIDE Trainers, Organizers and Arbiters’ Seminars are included in the parallel program. Al Ain Classic A & B International Open tournaments will take place concurrently with the World Youth.

All the information and the players lists by category and country on the official site.

FIDE Events Commission

World Youth Chess Championships 2013
Tue, 29 Oct 2013 18:28:05 +0000
Anand's Seconds for World Chess Championship: Speculations about GMs Surya Shekhar Ganguly, Sand
Chess Blog for Daily Chess News and Trivia (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2013

Hello everyone,

Anand - Carlsen World Chess Championship 2013 Updates: We're really not sure whether this is pure speculations about the seconds for the World Chess Champion, or really has some substance to it.

Indian newspaper Times of India has reported that it is a possibility that Grandmasters Surya Shekhar Ganguly and Sandipan Chanda have returned to India after working with World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand in Germany. 

The report basically explains the idea of Magnus Carlsen and Viswanathan Anand maintaining secrecy about their location and training team. The chess feature also talks about Carlsen having assisted Anand earlier.

But, the big paragraphs to note are these:

However, sources close to the Anand camp have informed that Surya Sekhar Ganguly and Sandipan Chanda, two Indian Grandmasters, had been working with the defending champion in Germany. It's a great honour for any player to be associated with the biggest match, but they are bound by a code of silence, signing contracts with the players concerned that they won't talk about it before the game gets over.

"You can say I have gone underground," Ganguly told TOI, when he returned to Kolkata a few days back for the festival break. While he would refuse to divulge where he was, it was understood that he, along with Chanda and a couple of others were in Germany with Anand and Aruna (his wife and manager) preparing for the game.
Rest of the chess feature involves "data" about seconds that is already known. All we can say is get ready for the big chess excitement this year as only 10 days are to go for the World Chess Championship 2013 in Chennai. 

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Sun, 27 Oct 2013 21:00:00 +0000
Record 7th Russian Chess Title: Peter Svidler goes 'Wheeeeeeeee' with Joy
Chess Blog for Daily Chess News and Trivia (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2013

Hello everyone,

From left: Peter Svidler, Ian Nepomniachtchi, Nikita Vitiugov

Peter Svidler has become the Russian National Chess Champion 2013 thereby creating a Russian chess record of having won the title seven times. Svidler picked up the title after beating Ian Nepomniachtchi in the tiebreak. Svidler tweeted "wheeeeeeeee" right after winning the title as congratulations poured in! Svidler has previously won the title in 1994, 1995, 1997, 2003, 2008 and 2011.
In the last round, Ian Nepomniachtchi was able to capitalise on a blunder by Vladimir Kramnik to catch up with Svidler as the latter drew a game with Sergey Karjakin. Svidler and Nepomniachtchi then faced each other in a 15-minute rapid playoff which was won by Svidler 1.5-0.5. Also, Nikita Vitiugov was able to beat Vladimir Kramnik for the third spot on a better tiebreak score.

Meanwhile, hope you also read the Chess Blog earlier post: 

Russian Women's Chess Championship 2013: Valentina Gunina is Champion, Alexandra Kosteniuk Vice-Champion

This was Valentina Gunina's second title at the Russian Chess Super Finals.
The Russian Chess Championship Super Final 2013 for men and women was held from 5th to 14th October at the State Historical and Architectural Museum in Nizhny Novgorod. Both events were held according to the round robin system with 10 players each. The total prize fund for both groups is 6 million RUB (approx 138,000 EUR).
Final Standings:
1. Peter Svidler 6.5 2. Ian Nepomniachtchi - 6.5
3. Nikita Vitiugov 4. Vladimir Kramnik - at 5.5
5. Dmitry Andrejkin - 5
6. Sergey Karjakin, 7. Ernest Inarkiev - 4.5
8. Aleksey Goganov - 3.5
9. Alexander Motylev - 2.5 
10. Anton Shomo - 1

From Alexandra Kosteniuk's
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Tue, 15 Oct 2013 13:56:00 +0000
GIOACCHINO GRECO Di Cuppone Fiorinto


Di Cuppone Fiorinto

Gioacchino Greco. detto “ il calabrese” per non dare adito a dubbi sulla sua italianità, fu considerato il migliore giocatore di scacchi a cavallo tra il XVI e XVII secolo. La sua carriera di scacchista si svolse a Roma ed in seguito presso le più importanti Corti europee : presso i Lorena in Francia, in Spagna, in Inghilterra e poi di nuovo in Francia. Gioacchino faceva parte di quella schiera di cortigiani tra i quali troviamo i migliori letterati, pittori, musicisti che allietavano le giornate dei Nobili dell’epoca. Il gioco degli scacchi già da allora godeva di grande considerazione. Nell’immagine che segue è ritratto un altro talento italiano Leonardo da Cutro che sfida il Vescovo Ruy Lopez da Segura ideatore della variante di apertura Partita Spagnola detta anche “ Ruy Lopez “ .La celebre sfida ebbe luogo presso la corte del Re Filippo II di Spagna nel 1575 e si concluse con la vittoria dell’italiano per 3 a 2.

read more
Tue, 08 Oct 2013 19:14:17 +0000
Oslo Chess International becomes Håvard Vederhus’ memorial, Begins Today
Chess Blog for Daily Chess News and Trivia (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2013  

Hi everyone,
The 2013 edition of Oslo Chess International will take place in Norway, 29 September – 6 October 2013. The tournament organized by Hans Olav Lahlum and Akademisk Sjakklubb Oslo is a 9-round Swiss open for all players having the official titles GM, IM, FM, WGM, WIM or WFM from FIDE. 

Also qualified are other male players with an official FIDE-ELO of at least 2150, and other female players with an official FIDE-ELO of at least 2000.

Registration and more information at the official website

Oslo Chess International becomes Håvard Vederhus’ memorial

by Hans Olav Lahlum

After consultations with the family of Håvard Vederhus, the organizer of Oslo Chess International has decided that the 2013 edition will be played as a memorial tournament and given the sub heading Håvard Vederhus’ memorial.

Håvard Vederhus (born November 10th 1989) was as a child a talented chess player. He took fourth place in the Under-11 class in the Norwegian championship at Gausdal in 1999, beating the one year younger Magnus Carlsen in the process.
Håvard continued played the Norwegian championship and remained an active member of Oslo club SK 1911 until the age of 16. His father and older brother were also members of this club.

Next to studies, music and christian engagements Håvard’s life was later dominated by politics. He became leader of AUF in Oslo, the Norwegian Labour Party’s youth organization, and was considered one of the party’s greatest young talents when he was shot and killed at Utøya during the terror attack July 22nd 2011.

Oslo Chess International is meant to be a tournament for both the elite and the masses. As a chess player Håvard Vederhus belonged to the latter, as he chose to apply his talents in other arenas. By this he became a good example of a man who in his youth enjoyed chess and the chess community, bringing him experiences and lessons to be applied later in life.

His premature death was a great loss also to his many friends in the Norwegian chess community. The organizer, who has recently written a biography on Håvard, wishes to highlight this during Oslo Chess International.

From Alexandra Kosteniuk's
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Sun, 29 Sep 2013 13:49:00 +0000
Hiarcs leads, Stockfish, Komodo, Gull catch up and share second at TCEC
TCEC by Martin Thoresen is the top world computer chess competition, now at Stage 2 with 19 engines

TCEC by Martin Thoresen is the top world computer chess competition, now at Stage 2 with 19 engines

Hiarcs continues dominating the second stage of the top computer chess championship TCEC. Hiarcs is clear first with 5,0/7, despite losing it’s 7th round game against Stage 1 winner Bouquet.

The chasing pack used the opportunity to catch up with the leader. Stockfish needed only 55 moves to defeat Naum, while Komodo won a 144 moves thriller against Critter. It was Gull that missed to join the leader, after drawing with Shredder. Stockfish, Komodo, Gull now share the second position with 4,5/7, and Stockfish has a direct match with white against Harcs in the next round.

The top seeded Houdini won against Junior, but still cannot lift off and shares 9th-11th with Rybka and Naum. Watch the live games here / Visit the official website


Replay the games of Stage 1 / See the current live gameFull list of participants / Information / Play online at Chessdom Arena


Standings after round 7

Engine ELO Points
1 Hiarcs 2979 5
2 Stockfish 3098 4.5
3 Gull 3063 4.5
4 Komodo 3086 4.5
5 Bouquet 1.8a 3069 4
6 Shredder 2942 4
7 Critter 1.6a 3072 4
8 Spike 2921 4
9 Naum 2978 3.5
10 Rybka 3092 3.5
11 Houdini 3146 3.5
12 Spark 2889 3
13 Jonny 2789 2.5
14 Exchess 7.15b 2702 2.5
15 Equinox 3051 2
16 Onno 2834 2
17 Toga II 2857 2
18 Tornado 2830 2
19 Junior 2913 2
Sun, 29 Sep 2013 20:51:25 +0000

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