92 boys and 68 girls in Istanbul

11/13/2005 – The World Junior Championship in Turkey is one of the biggest in recent years. Some people, like Hamidullah Sarwary from Afghanistan, had to overcome obstacles to attend. After four rounds top seed Shakhriyar Mamedyarov is leading with 4/4. We bring you results, pictures and a report by Nigel Short.


World Junior Championships

A report from Istanbul by Nigel Short

With 92 boys and 68 girls, the World Junior has one of the biggest entries of recent years. As one would expect, Europe is the best represented continent with large contingents also from Asia and the Americas. African representation is somewhat sparse – a reflection not only of the cost of travel, but also of the fact that the African Individual Championship is taking place in Lusaka, Zambia, at the same time. Nor should we forget George Wendi Xie, the solitary participant from the Antipodes.


Hamidullah Sarwary with our reporter Nigel Short

Some people, such as Hamidullah Sarwary from Afghanistan, have had to overcome obstacles to get here. Like many of his countrymen, he was forced to flee to Pakistan during the war – the one important consolation being that he was introduced to cricket! An interpreter for the U.S.Army for the last three years, this very polite young man was fortunate enough to have a relatively well-paid job. Even so, it required financial contributions from other family members to make the trip viable. Apparently chess is quite popular in Kabul, frequently being played in the streets, but there is little structure and only club.

Round Two

Shakhriyar Mamedyarov continued his winning ways demolishing Levon Babujyan of Armenia. With a hefty 2674 elo, the Azeri tactician is the man to beat, in my opinion. That said, I should remind people that the odds of him (or indeed anyone) carrying off a second World Junior title are statistically rather low in a tournament of so many participants. His countryman Vugar Gashimov, a blitz expert and one of just four players over the 2600 barrier, has a close escape in his game against Tornike Sanikadze, who nervously accepted a draw in a position of manifest superiority, but with little time.


Top seed GM Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, 2674, AZE

Having witnessed various horrific blunders yesterday, I will take a short interlude to say again how abominable this FIDE time-control is. In San Luis, Argentina, the Topalovs and Anands of the world were given the opportunity to play proper chess, but here, and indeed at most tournaments, they are not. How on earth the imbeciles who pushed for the introduction of this super-fast time control could expect anyone to play decent endgames (we are not talking about correspondence chess here, just a chance to pause and think a little) is beyond comprehension. One can only conclude that either the powers that be do not understand or do not care for chess, and probably both. Philistinism has prevailed, and until we obtain an administration that is sympathetic to the views of ordinary chess players, things will remain in this deplorable state.

With the players still jockeying for position at this very early stage it is difficult to identify who is hot and who is not. Probably we will have to wait until after five or even six rounds before we can really see who is truly in contention for a medal. For the moment I will confine myself to noting that Radoslav Wojtaszek, another 2600 player player and someone to whom I suffered a particularly painful defeat in Warsaw last year, ground down Vasily Papin in a rook and bishop endgame. The Pole exudes confidence. With the Under 18 trophy already adorning his bedroom, he will no doubt be eager to add to his collection of silverware.


The girls' section of the World Junior Championship

The women’s event featured two notable upsets with top-seeded Nana Dzagnidze being outplayed by Liu Pei in a Torre Attack. The Georgian dropped a pawn in the middlegame but even then retained a measure of counterplay. Only after a further inaccuracy did the position become untenable. The Chinese girl then swiftly dispatched her esteemed opponent with some forceful kingside thrusts.

Anna Ushenina became the next highly ranked victim when she squandered a very promising position to lose abruptly to a mating attack to Bela Khotenashvili. However both Bathuyag Mongontuul and Natalia Zbeskaya advanced their cases, with the former sacrificing her queen effectively. Joining them on two points are Tania Sachdev – the “Indian Kosteniuk”, as she has been dubbed – who won what can only be described as a hopelessly lost position against the Atousa Pourkashiyan of Iran; the Romanian duet of Camelia Ciobanu and Alina Motoc; Gu Xiaobing; Salome Melia; and last, but not least, the ever popular Anna Sharevich.


In fourth place: WIM Anna Sharevich, 2305, BLR

For reasons I cannot adequately explain to wife, I am always particularly interested in girls’ events, but given my official responsibility as a serious reporter, I shall endeavour to put hormonal considerations aside and be as impartial as possible in my coverage of both tournaments over the coming days.

Standings after four rounds

Boys
1 GM Mamedyarov Shak. 2674 AZE 4
2 GM Wojtaszek Radoslaw 2606 POL
3 GM Smeets Jan 2531 NED
4 FM Wei Chenpeng 2390 CHN 3
5 GM Gashimov Vugar 2608 AZE 3
6 IM Mamedov Nidjat 2517 AZE 3
7 FM Kuderinov Kirill 2432 KAZ 3
8 GM Tomashevsky Evgeny 2564 RUS 3
9 - Wang Hao 2519 CHN 3
10 GM Alekseev Evgeny 2632 RUS 3
11 GM Stellwagen Daniel 2561 NED 3
12 IM Kharitonov Alexandr 2545 RUS 3
13 IM L'ami Erwin 2541 NED 3
14 IM Romanov Evgeny 2479 RUS 3
15 IM Lenic Luka 2476 SLO 3
16 IM Heberla Bartlomiej 2465 POL 3
17 GM Predojevic Borki 2558 BIH 3
18 GM Kurnosov Igor 2523 RUS 3
19 FM Glud Jacob Vang 2349 DEN 3
20 FM Terrieux Kevin 2365 FRA
21 IM Poobesh Anand S 2397 IND
22 - Negi Parimarjan 2352 IND
23 GM Berkes Ferenc 2596 HUN
24 GM Nyback Tomi 2563 FIN
25 GM Bartel Mateusz 2513 POL
26 - Li Chao(B) 2305 CHN
27 IM Zhigalko Andrey 2537 BLR
28 - Babujian Levon 2429 ARM
29 - Maenhout Thibaut 2282 BEL
30 GM Wang Yue 2585 CHN
31 IM Khairullin Ildar 2537 RUS
32 IM Zinchenko Yaroslav 2485 UKR
33 FM Kurmann Oliver 2287 SUI
34 IM Rau Hannes 2421 GER
35 - Tikkanen Hans 2343 SWE
 
Girls
1 WGM Gu Xiaobing CHN 2330 4
2 WGM Tania Sachdev IND 2379
3 WFM Motoc Alina ROM 2313
4 WIM Sharevich Anna BLR 2305 3
5 WIM Kadziolka Beata POL 2352 3
6 WGM Melia Salome GEO 2318 3
7 - Khotenashvili Bela GEO 2288 3
8 IM Dzagnidze Nana GEO 2443 3
9 IM Paehtz Elisabeth GER 2408 3
10 WGM Pogonina Natalija RUS 2401 3
11 WGM Ushenina Anna UKR 2409 3
12 WGM Zawadzka Jolanta POL 2381 3
13 WIM Nadig Kruttika IND 2224 3
14 WIM Mamedjarova Turkan AZE 2223 3
15 - Liu Pei CHN 2283
16 WFM Ciobanu Camelia ROM 2262
17 WGM Zdebskaja Natalia UKR 2390
18 WGM Harika Dronavalli IND 2392
19 WIM Aketaeva Dana KAZ 2256
20 WGM Paridar Shadi IRI 2237
21 IM Vasilevich Irina RUS 2389
22 WGM Khukhashvili Sopiko GEO 2362
23 WIM Karavade Eesha IND 2348
24 WIM Andriasian Siranush ARM 2263
25 WIM Meshcheriakova E. RUS 2197
26 - Plazaola Maria ARG 2087
27 WGM Corke Anya HKG 2222

Links


Picture gallery


Levon Babujian, 2429 ARM, vs GM Ferenc Berkes, 2596 HUN


Mehdi Ouakhir, 2239, MAR, and Erhan Tanrikulu, 2151, TUR


Third place with 3.5/4: GM Jan Smeets, 2531, NED


In fourth place: FM Wei Chenpeng, 2390, CHN


GM Elshan Moradiabadi, 2497, IRI


Third place after four rounds: WFM Alina Motoc, 2313, ROM


WIM Bianca Muhren, 2260, NED


Barbara Coddens, BEL


IM Elisabeth Paehtz, 2408, GER


Farid Zeynalov, 2179, AZE


Hans Tikkanen, 2343, SWE


Sarah Hoolt, 2144, GER


IM Ildar Khairullin, 2537, RUS


WFM Karina Szczepkowska, 2278, POL

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