2012 Chess Olympiad Istanbul: Round eight

9/5/2012 – "I promise not to do another Chinese game next round," wrote our GM commentator Alejandro Ramirez, "but this one was so pretty!" He is referring to Ding Liren vs Rauf Mamedov, from the China-Azerbaijan match. Russia increased their lead with a victory over defending champions Armenia, while in the women's section India has move up to second place (behind China). Report with GM commentary.

ChessBase 14 Download ChessBase 14 Download

Everyone uses ChessBase, from the World Champion to the amateur next door. Start your personal success story with ChessBase 14 and enjoy your chess even more!


Along with the ChessBase 14 program you can access the Live Database of 8 million games, and receive three months of free ChesssBase Account Premium membership and all of our online apps! Have a look today!

More...

The 40th Chess Olympiad is taking place in the Turkish metropole of Istanbul, from August 27 to September 10th, 2012. A record of 158 national chess federations have brought teams to Istanbul to participate in this prestigious event, which is being staged in the WOW Hotel and Convention Center, just minutes away from the airport.

Round eight

Russia made a huge step in their quest for the first gold medal since 2002 as they beat the defending champion and one of the main rivals, the team of Ukraine. Sergey Karjakin woke up in the perfect moment to outplay his former team-mate Andrei Volokitin and earn the key victory for Russia.


Russia with Grischuk and Kramnik vs Ukraine with Ponomariov and Ivanchuk

The two games in which the Ukrainians played white pieces were balanced and eventually drawn. Vassily Ivanchuk earned a pawn against Vladimir Kramnik and kept attempting to win in order to even the score. Kramnik's task was made easier by the fact that all pawns were grouped only on the king's flank. The former World Champion provided a much needed draw for the final 2.5-1.5 victory in favour of Russia.


Azerbaijan vs China, with Taimour Radjabov playing Wang Hao on board one

China took an early lead against Azerbaijan as Ding Liren beat Rauf Mamedov without much trouble. But Shakhriyar Mamedyarov struck back by winning brilliantly against Wang Yue. With the other two boards being drawn, the teams split the points, 2-2.

Armenia walked past Uzbekistan with 3-1, while USA took advantage of another easy pairing to rest Hikaru Nakamura and defeat FYROM 3-1. In the next round USA is matched against Russia on the top table.


Philippines vs England with Wesley So playing Michael Adams on board one

Elo doesn't really play a game in chess, as repeatedly proven by Philippines. The 35th-seed soundly beat the strong team of England by 3-1. Oliver Barbosa on the 2nd and legendary Eugenio Torre on the 3rd board defeated their respective opponents, Gawain Jones and Nigel Short.


Serbia vs India with Ivan Ivanisevic playing Krishnan Sasikiran on board one

Germany and France have scored narrow victories against Hungary and Cuba respectively. India escaped defeat as GN Gopal evened the score against Serbia with a win against Dusan Popovic. Earlier Ivan Ivanisevic beat Krishnan Sasikiran.

Round eight: Top twenty team pairings – Open

No.
SNo
Team
Res.
Res.
Team
SNo
1
1
Russia
Ukraine
2
2
6
China
2
2
Azerbaijan
7
3
3
Armenia
3
1
Uzbekistan
33
4
49
FYROM
1
3
USA
5
5
14
Germany
Hungary
4
6
11
England
1
3
Philippines
35
7
8
France
Cuba
15
8
13
India
2
2
Serbia
20
9
18
Spain
½
Israel
12
10
30
Latvia
1
3
Netherlands
9
11
25
Romania
1
3
Argentina
29
12
19
Croatia
Poland
16
13
21
Greece
2
2
Slovenia
28
14
17
Czech Rep.
Moldova
23
15
72
Turkey 2016
½
Georgia
26
16
36
Austria
Mexico
38
17
42
Slovakia
1
3
Brazil
24
18
56
Mongolia
1
3
Italy
22
19
32
Belarus
3
1
Bosnia Herz.
50
20
31
Turkey
1
3
Vietnam
27

Women Section

In round seven Poland fought bravely against the defending champions from Russia but in the eighth round the top seeded China proved to be too strong. With another victory from the World Champion Hou Yifan and the second board GM Zhao Xue playing with renewed spirit, China soundly defeated their opponents with 3-1.


China vs Poland with Hou Yifan playing Monika Socko on board one

Russia was engaged in another epic battle, this time against their neighbors from Ukraine. Anna Ushenina imposed the first defeat to the reigning Russian champion Natalija Pogonina. The next game to finish was the draw between Mariya Muzychuk and Valentina Gunina. In the last move before the time control Natalia Zhukova missed a tactical shot that would have brought her substantial advantage. Instead, Nadezhda Kosintseva continued to gradually improve her position and then a neat trading sequence secured her a winning queens' endgame.

As for the top board, it is sufficient to say that a draw was signed after 157(!) moves! A stubborn defence from Kateryna Lahno finally wore down Tatiana Kosintseva and the Russian player conceded a draw after holding a huge advantage for most of the game. Thus the match ended in a 2-2 tie.


India vs Vietnam, with GM Harika Dronavalli playing Le Thao Nguyen Pham

France defeated their neighbors from Spain with 3-1 to schedule a clash with the powerful China in the next round. India beat Vietnam 2.5-1.5 to make a big leap to the shared second place.


IM Almira Skripchenko scored an important win for France...


... as did IM Tania Sachdev for the team from India, who has
won seven games and lost one so far in this Olympiad

The 35th seed Uzbekistan is also sharing second place, but this shouldn't surprise anymore. The talented and underrated team beat Hungary, after scoring against USA in one of the previous rounds.

Round eight: Top twenty team pairings – Women

No.
SNo
Team
Res.
Res.
Team
SNo
1
7
Poland
1
3
China
1
2
2
Russia
2
2
Ukraine
4
3
14
France
3
1
Spain
11
4
35
Uzbekistan
Hungary
12
5
28
Vietnam
India
6
6
19
Serbia
2
2
Georgia
3
7
57
Philippines
½
USA
5
8
8
Armenia
3
1
Romania
10
9
13
Bulgaria
Czech Rep.
23
10
33
Lithuania
2
2
Iran
26
11
38
Switzerland
1
3
Kazakhstan
22
12
27
Azerbaijan
Greece
18
13
9
Germany
Montenegro
42
14
25
Israel
½
Estonia
49
15
16
Slovenia
3
1
Colombia
34
16
37
Peru
2
2
Slovakia
20
17
92
Sri Lanka
1
3
Italy
31
18
45
Turkey
2
2
Cuba
15
19
36
Belarus
2
2
Sweden
46
20
48
Belgium
1
3
Netherlands
17

Top rankings after eight rounds

# Open
+
=
Pts
1 Russia
7
1
0
15
2 China
6
1
1
13
3 Armenia
6
1
1
13
4 USA
5
3
0
13
5 Germany
5
3
0
13
6 Philippines
6
1
1
13
7 Azerbaijan
5
2
1
12
8 Ukraine
6
0
2
12
9 Netherlands
6
0
2
12
10 France
5
2
1
12
11 Israel
5
2
1
12
12 Argentina
5
2
1
12
13 Poland
6
0
2
12
14 Hungary
5
1
2
11
15 India
3
5
0
11
16 Georgia
5
1
2
11
17 England
4
3
1
11
18 Uzbekistan
5
1
2
11
19 Czech Rep.
4
3
1
11
20 Serbia
4
3
1
11
 
# Women
+
=
Pts
1 China
6
2
0
14
2 Russia
5
3
0
13
3 France
6
1
1
13
4 India
6
1
1
13
5 Uzbekistan
6
1
1
13
6 Ukraine
4
4
0
12
7 USA
5
2
1
12
8 Poland
5
2
1
12
9 Kazakhstan
5
2
1
12
10 Armenia
6
0
2
12
11 Bulgaria
5
2
1
12
12 Georgia
4
3
1
11
13 Israel
5
1
2
11
14 Serbia
4
3
1
11
15 Hungary
5
1
2
11
16 Vietnam
5
1
2
11
17 Iran
5
1
2
11
18 Slovenia
3
5
0
11
19 Azerbaijan
5
1
2
11
20 Germany
5
1
2
11

Summaries from the official web site,
photos by David Llada, Arman Karakhanyan, Anastasiya Karlovich


Game of the day commentary by GM Alejandro Ramirez

Choosing a game to annotate is not terribly complicated usually. In a typical round robin, there is a low chance that the maybe five games that happen simultaneously will all produce exciting games. More often than not, there is one game that stands out from the rest and that one gets annotated. The problem with the Olympiad is that there are so many games, that the chance for coolness increases exponentially! My problem today was choosing between several nice games, or doing a series of endgame mistakes (see Karjakin-Volokitin, Wang Yue-Radjabov, Georgiev-Kamsky among others), or this spectacular game. At the end the sheer energy of White's attack, coupled with the fact that I haven't annotated a fourth board game yet, led me to choose this demolition of the KID.

[Event "40th Olympiad 2012 Open1"] [Site "Istanbul"] [Date "2012.09.05"] [Round "8"] [White "Ding, Liren"] [Black "Mamedov, Rauf"] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "E94"] [WhiteElo "2695"] [BlackElo "2634"] [Annotator "Ramirez,Alejandro"] [PlyCount "49"] [EventDate "2012.??.??"] [EventCountry "TUR"] [WhiteTeam "China"] [BlackTeam "Azerbaijan"] [WhiteTeamCountry "CHN"] [BlackTeamCountry "AZE"] 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 Bg7 4. e4 {To be perfectly honest, I don't know if my annotations are biased or the KID is just doing awfully in the past year. Between Kramnik, Bacrot and now Ding it seems that all games end in a 1-0.} d6 5. Nf3 O-O 6. Be2 e5 7. O-O exd4 (7... Nc6 8. d5 Ne7 {is of course the main line.}) 8. Nxd4 Re8 9. f3 {Black is at an important crossroads. He can play c6 with the idea of d5 later, as Grischuk did last year against Gelfand to score a nice victory, or play for the dark squares with Nc6. The Azeri contingency almost invariably play Nc6, though the Chinese champion played c6 himself in a few occasions.} Nc6 10. Be3 Nh5 11. Nc2 $1 {This seemingly passive move will be getting a lot of popularity thanks to this game. The idea is not new, by all means Ding will be playing the next few moves exactly like Atalik did in 2005. The difference is that Atalik played it against a 2100 and the game passed by without anyone really noticing it. Here, Ding uses it to crush Mamedov in an extremely important Olympiad game.} Be5 {This move seems rather forced as Black has to keep pressuring the dark squares.} 12. Nd5 $1 (12. Qd2 $6 Qh4 $15) 12... Bxb2 13. g4 $1 {The Chinese player blitzed this out. You know your position is dangerous when White instantly keeps throwing pawns at you.} Ng7 (13... Be5 14. f4 (14. gxh5 $2 Bxh2+ 15. Kg2 Qh4 $40 {Black should at least have a perpetual somewhere.}) 14... Bxa1 15. Qxa1 Ng7 16. Nf6+ Kh8 17. Bd2 {with the subsequent transfer of the bishop to c3. Black's position is terrible.}) (13... Nf6 14. Rb1 Be5 15. f4 {traps the bishop. This is kind of 'the point'.}) 14. Rb1 Bf6 15. f4 Rxe4 16. g5 Be7 17. Bd3 Re6 18. Bc1 $1 {The machine's first choice, but no one will be accusing the Chinese of using programs during the game any time soon. It is obvious that this move comes from hard work and a lot of pre-game effort. Black has fallen for exactly the position White wanted. The pressure on the kingside is very strong, Black's pieces are clumsy and it is not easy to make a move without losing. This lets the White player easily predict what his opponent is going to do, and as soon as he deviates, he knows that it probably was a mistake.} (18. Qf3 $6 f5 19. Rfe1 Ne8 20. c5 $2 {Was Atalik-Jueguens in 2005. The GM won after a long struggle.}) 18... f6 19. h4 fxg5 20. hxg5 Bf8 {This move is finally not amongst the top choices by a computer, and Ding finally took some time to think. He has several good choices now.} 21. Nce3 Nh5 $6 (21... Nd4 22. Bb2 c5 {Blocking that diagonal seemed of utmost importance.}) 22. f5 Bg7 {Discouraged by the result of the opening and with a mere 10 minutes remaining, Black despairs. There was no reason to give up the rook so easily, but his position was very unpleasant.} (22... Qxg5+ $2 23. Ng2 $18) (22... Re8 23. Ng4 Ne5 24. Ngf6+ Nxf6 25. Nxf6+ Kh8 26. fxg6 $18) (22... Re5 {was the only move to hang around a while. But it seems that after} 23. Ng4 Bg7 24. Nxe5 Nxe5 25. fxg6 Bg4 26. gxh7+ {White should be winning anyway, though there is work yet to be done. }) 23. fxe6 Bxe6 24. Bf5 $1 {So precise!} Bf7 25. Bg4 {And Black resigned in a hopeless situation. Mamedyarov wiped Wang Yue off the board with a relatively obvious exchange sacrifice, Guseinov drew Bu and Wang Hao held an impressive draw against Radjabov. This tie only benefits one team: Russia! They seem to have gotten their stuff together this year and, with a little bit of luck, edged out Ukraine. Russia is now a full 2 points (or 1 match victory) ahead of their nearest rivals.} 1-0

Daniel King: Round 8 Play of the Day: Karjakin vs Volokitin


Andrew Martin: Game of the Day Rd 8: Ding Liren v Mamedov

Summary of round 8 from the official video coverage

Live video coverage of the Olympiad


Remaining schedule of the Olympiad

There is live commentary of the most interesting games on Playchess.com,
beginning around half an hour after the games have started.

5 September 2012 15.00 8th Round
Daniel King
6 September 2012 15.00 9th Round
Valery Lilov
7 September 2012 15.00 10th Round
Daniel King
8 September 2012   Free Day
9 September 2011 11.00 11th Round, Closing
Daniel King
10 September 2011 Departure

Some hours after the end of each round we will be posting video summaries by Daniel King on our news page. If possible they will appear on the same night, otherwise early the next morning. We also expect best-game video commentary from Andrew Martin.


Links

The top 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 a free Playchess client there and get immediate access. You can also use ChessBase 11 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs.


Discussion and Feedback Join the public discussion or submit your feedback to the editors


Discuss

Rules for reader comments

 
 

Not registered yet? Register