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China drubs Russia 4-0 in Women's Team Championship

5/22/2007 – It was certainly not on the agenda of the First World Women's Team Championship, which is taking place from May 19 to 30 in Yekaterinburg, Russia. After a festive opening, and an uneventful first round, the key pairing took place in round two. It was there that the unprecedented whitewash occurred. We bring you a big picture report by WGM Elmira Mirzoeva.
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First World Women's Team Chess Championship 2007, Russia

This event is taking place from May 19 to 30 in Ekaterinburg, Russia, with women's teams from ten national federations – smong them Russia, Ukraine, China, Armenia, Georgia, Netherlands, Poland and Vietnam – participating. The venue is the five-star Atrium Palace Hotel, where the teams are also staying.

The town of Yekaterinburg – which is usually romanized to Ekaterinburg, is located on the eastern side of the Ural mountains and is the main industrial and cultural center of the Urals Federal District. Its population well over one a million makes it Russia's fifth largest city. It was founded in 1721 by Vasily Tatischev and named after Saint Catherine, the namesake of Tsar Peter the Great's wife Empress Catherine I (Yekaterina).

Yekaterinburg is famous for its theaters, like the Academic Ballet and Opera, the Sverdlovsk Academic Theater of Musical Comedy and the Academic Dramatic Theater. The city is the center of New Drama movement of contemporary Russian playwrites, and is also the capital of contemporary dance. There are more than 30 museums in Yekaterinburg.


House of governor of Yekaterinburg, built in the early 19th century

Participants

Countries Players
Czech Republic Katerina Nemcova, Petra Blazkova, Olga Sikorova, Jana Jackova
Germany Jessika Nill, Elisabeth Pähtz, Ketino Kachiani-Gersinska, Melanie Ohme, Maria Schöne
Ukraine Inna Gaponenko, Oksana Vozovic, Tatjana Vasilevich, Anna Ushenina, Anna, Kateryna Lahno
Russia Ekaterina Kovalevskaya, Ekaterina Korbut, Elena Tairova, Nadezhda Kosintseva, Tanya Kosintseva
Poland Marta Przezdziecka, Jolanta Zawadzka, Iweta Rajlich, Monika Socko, Karina Szczepkowska
China Zhao Xue, Huang Qian, Ruan Lufei, Sheng Yang, Hou Yifan
Georgia

Sopio Gvetadze, Sopiko Khukhashvili, Nino Khurtsidze, Lela Javakhishvili, Maia Chiburdanidze

Vietnam Le Kieu Thien, Hoang Thi Bao Tram, Pham Le Thao Nguyen, Le Than Tu, Nguyen Thi Thanh An
Botswana Tshepiso Lopang, Sylvia Pilane Masego, Ontiretse Sabure, Tuduesto Sabure, Boikhusto Modongo
Armenia Liana Aghabekian, Siranush Andriasian, Nelly Aginian, Lilit Mkrtchyan, Elina Danielian.

At the grand opening ceremony the participants and guests of the championship were treated to a laser show, performance by acrobats, etc. Present were the Governor of the Sverdlovsk region, Eduard Rossel and FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.


A cement truck arrives for the ceremonial laying of a foundation stone...


... by Governor Eduard Rossel and FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov


... for a new Chess Academy to be built in Yekaterinburg


Gala opening ceremony of the Women's Team Championship


A Ural singer on the stage with the Championship logo in the background


The world of chess – traced by a laser beam

Round one – 20.5.2007

In the first round of the championship China beat Vietnam resoundingly with 3.5-0.5. The Russian team easily won against the Germans with a 3-1 score. Tatyana Kosintseva and Nadezhda Kosintseva drew against Elizabeth Pähtz and Ketino Kachiani-Gersinska; Ekaterina Korbut beat Jessika Nill and Ekaterina Kovalevskaya beat Maria Schöne.


Ekaterina Korbut, playing for Russia


Germany's Elisabeth Pähtz (pronounced "Pay-ts")


Tatiana Kosentseva playing for the Russian team

The encounter Ukraine vs Armenia was a seven-hour battle, which the Ukraine team won 3-1. Maya Chiburdanidze won her game for the Georgian team, which beat the Czechs 2.5-1.5. Poland curshed Botswana 4-0. There were no drawn matches in the first round, which confirms that we are in for uncompromised battles of other rounds.


Maia Chiburdannidze playing Jana Jackova in Georgia vs Czech Republic

China
3.5-0.5
Vietnam
Zhao Xue
1-0
Le Kieu Thien Kim
Hou Yifan
1-0
Le Thanh Tu
Ruan Lufei
1-0
Hoang Thi Bao Tram
Shen Yang
½-½
Nguyen Thi Thanh An
Russia
3-1
Germany
Kosintseva, Tatiana
½-½
Paehtz, Elisabeth
Kosintseva, Nadezhda
½-½
Kachiani-Gersinska, Ketino
Korbut, Ekaterina
1-0
Nill, Jessica
Kovalevskaya, Ekaterina
1-0
Schoene, Maria Randi
Poland
4-0
Botswana
Socko, Monika
1-0
Sabure, Tuduetso
Zawadzka, Jolanta
1-0
Lopang, Tshepiso
Szczepkowska, Karina
1-0
Sabure, Ontiretse
Przezdziecka, Marta
1-0
Pilane, Masego, Sylvia
Geogia
2.5-1.5
Czech Republic
Chiburdanidze, Maya
1-0
Jackova, Jana
Javakhishvili, Lela
1-0
Sikorova, Olga
Khukhashvili, Sopiko
½-½
Blazkova, Petra
Gvetadze, Sofio
0-1
Nemcova, Katerina
Ukraine
3-1
Armenia
Lahno, Kateryna
½-½
Danielian, Elina
Ushenina, Anna
1-0
Mkrtchian, Lilit
Gaponenko, Anna
1-0
Aghinian, Nelly
Vasilevich, Tatiana
½-½
Andriasian, Siranush

Round two – 21.5.2007

The second round saw the probably key encounter of the entire tournament. In an eight-hour struggle the Chinese team produced an unprecedented 4-0 whitewash of their Russian opponents!


WGM Shen Yang, rated 2440, playing on board four for China

Nobody could have anticipated such a result. The Russian team decided not to field its most experienced player, Ekaterina Kovalevskaya, and to try a new team composition: Tatiana and Nadezhda Kosintseva, Ekaterina Korbut and Elena Tairova. After the opening it was clear that there would be long struggles on all four boards. On board three Ekaterina Korbut managed to outplay Ruan Lufei and get good chances to win. But she wasn’t able to increase the advantage consistantly. A couple of mistakes lead to the worsening of her position and finally Ekaterina lost. After that bad things happened with the rest of the Russian team. The loss of Elena Tairova was a pity. At first she had a bad position, then she not only equalised but managed to win an extra pawn. As compensation Chinese Huang Qian had a good central piece in the endgame. During the sixth hour Tairova made a mistake and the centralization of the opponent turned into an advantage. The Chinese player promoted a pawn, for which Tairova had to give a piece together with the game. The Kosintseva sisters did not put up much resistance, and in the end the meeting of the two biggest opponents finished with a “dry victory" for the Chinese team.


13-year-old Hou Yifan beat Nadezhda Kosintseva with black

In the rest of the games of the second round there were small surprises. For instance the Armenian team, which is considered to be one of the favourites for the medals, lost to the team of Vietnam 1.5-2.5. Poland beat Germany 3:1, after a five-hour battle. The match between Georgia and Botswana ended earlier than any other match – the Georgian team won 4:0, even without the participation of their top player Maya Chiburdanidze. She had a day off today.

Round 2 – 21.5.2007

Vietnam
2.5-1.5
Armenia
Le Kieu Thien Kim
0-1
Danielian, Elina
Le Thanh Tu
½-½
Mkrtchian, Lilit
Hong Thi Bao Tram
1-0
Andriasian, Siranush
Pham Le Thao Nguyen
1-0
Aghabekian, Liana
Czech Republic
1-3
Ukraine
Jackova, Jana
½-½
Lahno, Kateryna
Sikorova, Olga
0-1
Ushenina, Anna
Blazkova, Petra
0-1
Vasilevich, Tatiana
Nemcova, Katerina
½-½
Vozovic, Oksana
Botswana
0-4
Georgia
Sabure, Tuduetso
0-1
Javakhishvili, Lela
Lopang, Tshepiso
0-1
Khurtsidze, Nino
Sabure, Ontiretse
0-1
Khukhashvili, Sopiko
Pilane Masego, Sylvia
0-1
Gvetadze, Sofio
Germany
1-3
Poland
Paehtz, Elisabeth
½-½
Socko, Monika
Kachiani-Gersinska, Ketino
½-½
Rajlich, Iweta
Nill, Jessica
0-1
Zawadzka, Jolanta
Ohme, Melanie
0-1
Szczepkowska, Karina
China
4-0
Russia
Zhao Xue
1-0
Kosintseva, Tatiana
Hou Yifan
1-0
Kosintseva, Nadezhda
Ruan Lufei
1-0
Korbut, Ekaterina
Huang, Qian
1-0
Tairova, Elena

Pictures and information supplied by Elmira Mirzoeva,
Press-attaché of the 1st World Women’s Team Championship

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