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2010 Women's World Championship – Hou Yifan is world champion!

12/24/2010 – Santa Claus could not have given her a better present. After being pushed into an unexpected tie-break, young Hou Yifan pulled herself together and won the 4-game rapid match with a convincing 3-1 score. The hitherto youngest finalist in history is now the youngest world champion ever, breaking Maia Chiburdanidze's 32-year-old record. Here is the final report.
 

The Women's World Chess Championship is being held at Hatay, Turkey, from December 2nd to 25th. It is a 64-player knockout tournament, with two-game mini-matches qualifying a player to the next round, until the final and 6th round, which is a four-game match to determine the champion. In the event of a draw after the two tournament time-control games, there will be a rapid game tie-breaker, followed by a possible blitz playoff, and finally an armageddon blitz game. The time control is 90 minutes for 40 moves, followed by 30 minutes for the rest of the game, and a 30-second increment per move as of the first move. The games are held daily at 3 PM local time (2 PM Paris / 8 AM New York / 5 AM Los Angeles). The full schedule is available here.

Note that the organizers pulled out all the stops to provide coverage of the highest quality, including daily live video coverage during the rounds.

Finals


Ali Nihat Yazıcı, president of the Turkish federation, and organizer, accompanied by
FIDE president Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.

It was an incredible conclusion to a remarkable journey. Lufei Ruan had managed the feat of a last-minute win in the classical games to get anotehr chance in the tie-breaks, but in the end her higher-rated opponent, also known for her ability in rapid games, dominated and came through with a strong 3-1 score.


The time-honored opening move

Many a player would have been seriously rattled by that loss in the fourth game, but whether a tribute to her strength of character, or the typical ability of youth to forget yesterday’s disappointments, 16-year-old Hou Yifan was her impeccable self today, and relentlessly took advantage of her opponent’s mistakes. The hitherto youngest finalist in world championship history, has now crowned her efforts by also toppling Maia Chiburdanidze’s record as the youngest world champion in history. Garry Kasparov called immediately after Hou Yifan's victory, commenting that Maia was not much older when she beat the great Nona Gaprindashvili 8½-6½ -- a very tough battle.


The tie-break is started

Hou,Yifan (2591) - Ruan,Lufei (2480) [C61]
WCh Women Playoff Antakya TUR (4), 24.12.2010

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bb5 Nd4 4.Nxd4 exd4 5.0-0 Bc5 6.Bc4 d6 7.c3 Ne7 8.d3 0-0 9.Bg5 Kh8 10.Nd2 f6 11.Bh4 c6 12.Qe2 d5 13.Bb3 dxc3 14.bxc3 d4 15.cxd4 Bxd4 16.Rad1 Ng6 17.Bg3 Ne5 18.h3 a5 19.a4 Qe7 20.Kh1 c5 21.f4 Nc6 22.Nf3 Be6 23.Bxe6 Qxe6 24.Rb1 Qd7 25.Rfd1 Rfc8 26.Rb5 Nb4 27.Be1 b6 28.Nxd4 Qxd4 29.Bf2 Qd6 30.e5 fxe5 31.fxe5 Qe6? [31...Qg6 32.e6 Re8 33.Rxb6 Nd5 34.Rb3 (34.Rc6 Nc3) 34...Nf4 35.Qf3 Nxe6] 32.d4 c4? 33.d5! Qf5 34.d6 Nd3 35.Bxb6 Re8 36.Qg4 Qf7 37.d7 Re7








38.e6! Rxe6 39.Qxc4 Qxd7 40.Rxd3 Re1+ 41.Kh2 Qe7 42.Qc7 1-0. [Click to Replay]

Hou Yifan – the youngest female grandmaster in history
Hou Yifan, a Chinese chess prodigy


Final result (classic games)

Name
FED
Tit
Rtg
G1
G2
G3
G4
Total
   
Ruan, Lufei
CHN
WGM
2480
½
0
½
1
2
Hou, Yifan
CHN
GM
2591
½
1
½
0
2

Tie-break

 Name
FED
Tit
Rtg
Rp1
Rp2
Rp3
Rp4
Bz1
Bz2
SD
Total
                       
 Ruan, Lufei
CHN
WGM
2480
½
0
½
0
1
 Hou, Yifan
CHN
GM
2591
½
1
½
1
3

Links

The games are being broadcast live on the official web site and on the chess server Playchess.com. If you are not a member you can download the free PGN reader ChessBase Light, which gives you immediate access. You can also use the program to read, replay and analyse PGN games. New and enhanced: CB Light 2009!

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