World Chess Championship
Elista, 21st May – 8th June 2004
Saturday, June 5th, 2004 – She won the first two games of the Women's
World Championship convincingly, and needed only a draw in this four-game match
(not six games, as we previously reported) to clinch the title. But Antoaneta
Stefanova, top Bulgarian female player, found herself a pawn down in the third
game against WGM Ekaterina Kovalevskaya of Russia.
For a long time it looked, to spectators on the Internet, as though the 30-year-old
Russian would win the game and come in striking distance of her 25-year-old
opponent. However Stefanova defended very tenaciously and with a lot of imagination,
and on move 48 won the pawn back with an advantageous position. Three moves
later Kovalevskaya realised that she had no chances left of winning and a draw
was agreed between the players.
The final battle for the Women's World Championship in Elista
This means that Antoaneta Stefanova, the charming and charismatic player from
Bulgaria, is the new women's world champion. Congratulations to Antoaneta,
who incidentally has been very well known to the ChessBase since June 2002.
At that time she won the European Women's Championship with the incredible
score of 9 points in 11 games, which translated to a performance of 2671 Elo.
Who can forget the video interview with "Etti" Stefanova, produced
by Almira Skripchenko for ChessBase Magazine 80, entitled "Girls,
After the game and match were over Stefanova said she
did not yet fully understand what had happened to her. "Maybe I
will understand this tomorrow, or even later. For the moment I only know
that I have won the final match."
She gave a lot of the credit to her father, who was her
first chess coach. "I can say that he has played a great role in
winning the World Champion’s Crown as well."
Her second Vladimir Georgiev was also vital to her success.
"Vladimir helped me not only theoretically, but he was the one to
whom I talked to during the whole period of the championship, and he
also always supported me as a friend. Fifteen days is a long period of
time and it is not possible to survive this all on your own."
The games for the Women's World Championship were covered live on the FIDE
web site, where you can also find great pictures, reports of the entire
event, and analysis
by GM Yuri Yakovich of the final game. The pictures on this page are brought
to you by courtesy of FIDE.
Vice champion Ekaterina Kovalevskaya
A bird's eye view of the women's world championship final
The winner in deep thought during the game
Click here to replay
and download the final game