Arkadij Naiditsch takes President's Cup in Baku

5/12/2007 – Germany's top grandmaster Arkadij Naiditsch took the strong open in Baku, half a point clear of the field with 12 players rated 2600 or higher. Malakhatko, van Wely and Fedorov shared places 2-4, while the places 5-14 included names like Nigel Short and Vadim Milov. We bring you the games and results, as well as another batch of great pictures.

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The II International President’s Cup devoted to Azerbaijan’s prominent politician and late President Heydar Aliyev took place from 2nd May to 12th May 2007 in Baku. The tournament, which had $50,000 guaranteed prize fund and gifts for winners, included three sections: the Children’s Section, with age limit 14 years old, the Open Tournament and the Veteran Players’ Section with players over 60 years old. In the Open Tournament, the winner of the first place will get $5,000 and the second place $4,000.

The event had an exciting finish. In round eight the clear leader (almost from the start) Vadim Milov, was brought crashing down by the top seed Nigel Short, playing with the black pieces. After round eight the following players were in the lead, with more or less high aspirations for a first place:

Rnk Title Name Elo Pts
1 GM Short, Nigel D 2691 6.5
2 GM Guseinov, Gadir 2586 6.5
3 GM Malakhatko, Vadim 2598 6.5
4 GM Naiditsch, Arkadij 2654 6.5
5 GM Mamedov, Nidjat 2547 6
6 GM Savchenko, Stanislav 2545 6
7 GM Milov, Vadim 2675 6
8 GM Van Wely, Loek 2674 6
9 GM Balogh, Csaba 2617 6
10 GM Fedorov, Alexei 2611 6
11 - Morchiashvili, Bachana 2396 6
12 WGM Mamedjarova, Zeinab 2354 6

In round nine it was Nigel's turn to taste bitter defeat with white, when he lost an 88-move game (that finished in a Q vs R+P endgame) to Arkadij Naiditsch, who had won his last four games in succession. In fact Naiditsch played only one undecided game in this tournament. His score was +7 =1 –1 and the rating perfomance close to 2700.


The winner: Arkadij Naiditsch, half a point clear of the field


Keeping an eye on Nigel: visiting GM Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (left) watches the round six game

Final standings (six points and higher) after nine rounds

Rnk Sd Title Name Fed: Elo Pts TB1 TB2 TB3
1 4 GM Naiditsch, Arkadij GER 2654 7.5 47.5 37.5 37.5
2 9 GM Malakhatko, Vadim BEL 2598 7 51 40 40
3 3 GM Van Wely, Loek NED 2674 7 49.5 38.5 38.5
4 7 GM Fedorov, Alexei BLR 2611 7 49 38.5 38.5
5 1 GM Short, Nigel D ENG 2691 6.5 54 42.5 42.5
6 14 GM Mamedov, Nidjat AZE 2547 6.5 54 42.5 42.5
7 11 GM Guseinov, Gadir AZE 2586 6.5 53 41.5 41.5
8 15 GM Savchenko, Stanislav UKR 2545 6.5 53 41 41
9 12 GM Mamedov, Rauf AZE 2584 6.5 52.5 41 41
10 2 GM Milov, Vadim SUI 2675 6.5 52 43 43
11 6 GM Balogh, Csaba HUN 2617 6.5 50.5 39.5 39.5
12 34 - Morchiashvili, Bachana GEO 2396 6.5 46.5 36.5 36.5
13 24 IM Gasanov, Eldar UKR 2486 6.5 45.5 35 35
14 30 IM Dovliatov, Sanan AZE 2438 6.5 41.5 32.5 32.5
15 20 GM Zubarev, Alexander UKR 2511 6 53.5 43.5 43.5
16 5 GM Sadvakasov, Darmen KAZ 2618 6 51.5 40 40
17 32 IM Sanikidze, Tornike GEO 2426 6 50.5 40.5 40.5
18 16 GM Shanava, Konstantine GEO 2532 6 50 38 38
19 17 GM Shengelia, Davit GEO 2523 6 49.5 38.5 38.5
20 8 GM Gelashvili, Tamaz GEO 2605 6 49 38 38
21 10 GM Burmakin, Vladimir RUS 2593 6 48.5 38 38
22 25 IM Magalashvili, Davit GEO 2474 6 48 37 37
23 38 WGM Mamedjarova, Zeinab AZE 2354 6 48 37 37
24 56 - Lomsadze, Davit GEO 2268 6 47.5 37.5 37.5
25 35 - Paichadze, Luka GEO 2392 6 45.5 36.5 36.5
26 51 WIM Khotenashvili, Bela GEO 2301 6 44 34.5 34.5
27 42 WGM Zozulia, Anna BEL 2344 6 41.5 32 32
28 37 - Durarbeyli, Vasif AZE 2368 6 41 33 33
29 61 - Badalov, Samir AZE 2245 6 38 29.5 29.5

Click to download all games available in zipped PGN

Picture Gallery


The tournament atmosphere in the Azerbaijani capital of Baku


Arkadij Naiditsch (left) during his seventh round win over Konstantine Shavana


Holland's Loek van Wely facing Stanislav Savchenko of Ukraine

The above photos are by Farid Khayrulin of "FGF Digital STUDIO", who has published a large number of excellent images from the President's Cup on the official web site. We bring you a few more, of lesser known players, to give you an impression of the atmosphere at this event in Baku.

Many thanks to Farid Khayrulin for the great work and these remarkable portraits!

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