EURO 2007: Tiebreaks and reverbrations in Dresden

4/18/2007 – The Eighth European Championship, with 550 participants and 184 GMs, ended in a seven-way tie for first and, below them, 37 players with 7.5/11 contending for places in the FIDE World Cup. The final day saw all the tense tiebreaks played out in the Congress Center. The organizers provided us with statistics, some player with protests and our Playchess Sysop with tiebreak games for our final report.

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Eighth European Chess Championship in Dresden

The 8th Individual European Chess Championships (EURO 2007) took place from April 2nd to 15th, 2007 in Dresden, Germany in the International Congress Center. The event was an 11 round Swiss, with time controls set at 90 minutes for 40 moves plus 30 minutes for the rest of the game, with an increment of 30 seconds per move, starting from move one.

The tiebreaks

Seven players tied for first in the open section, and the tiebreak was ultimately won by Vladislav Tkachiev, who took the title of European Championship by beating Ivan Cheparinov, Dmitry Jakovenko and Emil Sutovsky (in the final). Sutovsky reached the final by beating Konstantin Sakaev and Dusko Pavasovic. Had he beaten Tkachiev he would have been the first player to win the title twice. All available games from the tiebreaks are given at the end of this report.


I made it! GM Vladislav Tkachiev celebrates his victory. To his left Emil Sutovsky, Silver, and Dmitry Jakovenko, Bronze.


Winners on the stage. In front Jakovenko, Tkachiev and Sutovsky, behind them Nadezhda Kosintseva, Antoaneta Stefanova and Tatiana Kosintseva.


The winners of Bronze, Silver and Gold

Here are the results of the tiebreaks for the Championship. All matches were played at the rate of 15min + 10 sec; 5 min + 2 sec; 5/4 min Final, i.e. first fifteen minutes games with 10 seconds increment per move; then five minute games with two seconds and then one Armageddon game in which White had five minutes to Black's four but had to win.

Tiebreaks for the Championship

First round
A 2 GM Sutovsky Emil w 1 b ½        
  7 GM Sakaev Konstantin b 0 w ½        
½
                     
B 3 GM Pavasovic Dusko b ½ w 1        
  6 IM Iljin Artem w ½ b 0        
½
                     
C 4 GM Cheparinov Ivan w 0 b ½        
½
  5 GM Tkachiev Vladislav b 1 w ½        
Second round
D 1 GM Jakovenko Dmitry w ½ b 0        
½
  5 GM Tkachiev Vladislav b ½ w 1        
                     
E 2 GM Sutovsky Emil b 1 w ½        
  3 GM Pavasovic Dusko w 0 b ½        
½
                     
F 7 GM Sakaev Konstantin w 1 b ½        
  6 IM Iljin Artem b 0 w ½        
½
Third round
G 5 GM Tkachiev Vladislav w 1 b 1        
2
  2 GM Sutovsky Emil b 0 w 0        
0
                     
H 1 GM Jakovenko Dmitry b ½ w 1        
  3 GM Pavasovic Dusko w ½ b 0        
½
                     
I 4 GM Cheparinov Ivan w 1 b 0 b 1 w 1
3
  7 GM Sakaev Konstantin b 0 w 1 w 0 b 0
1

The European Championship was part of the qualification for the FIDE World Cup. Originally it was announced that 33 players would qualify, but then in Dresden it was announced that the number was reduced to 29. The exact reason was not explained with enough clarity and led to protests by a number of players. One, Alexander Khalifman, was sufficiently upset to boycott the tiebreak games.


The tiebreak games under way


The public could follow the games on a giant projection screen

In any case of the 37 players with 7.5 points the top ten (by Buchholz), Volokitin, Gustafsson, Tomashevsky, Almasi, Malakhov, Galkin, Laznicka, Nisipeanu, Nevednichy and Landa, qualified automatically. Of the remaining 27 some players were prequalified, so that the remaining 24 were matched up for 12 places. They produced the following results (15min + 10 sec; 5 min + 2 sec; 5/4 min Final):

Tiebreaks for the qualification for the World Cup

  18 GM Volkov Sergey w 1 b 1            
2
  44 GM Kurnosov Igor b 0 w 0            
0
                         
  19 GM Vitiugov Nikita b 1 w ½            
  43 IM Meier Georg w 0 b ½            
½
                         
  20 GM Eljanov Pavel w 1 b ½            
  41 GM Jankovic Alojzije b 0 w ½            
½
                         
  22 GM Avrukh Boris b 1 w 1            
2
  40 GM Beliavsky Alexander w 0 b 0            
0
                         
  23 GM Roiz Michael w 0 b 1 w 1 b 1    
3
  39 GM Bologan Viktor b 1 w 0 b 0 w 0    
1
                         
  24 IM Rodshtein Maxim b 0 w 1 w 0 b 0    
1
  38 GM Iljushin Alexei w 1 b 0 b 1 w 1    
3
                         
  25 GM Motylev Alexander w 1 b 0 b 1 w 0 w 1
3
  37 GM Hracek Zbynek b 0 w 1 w 0 b 1 b 0
2
                         
  26 GM Khalifman Alexander b w            
0
  36 GM Markus Robert w + b +            
2
                         
  27 GM Tiviakov Sergei w ½ b ½ b 1 w 1    
3
  35 GM Mchedlishvili Mikheil b ½ w ½ w 0 b 0    
1
                         
  28 GM Georgiev Vladimir b 0 w 1 b 0 w 0    
1
  34 GM Socko Bartosz w 1 b 0 w 1 b 1    
3
                         
  29 GM Bartel Mateusz w 0 b ½            
½
  33 GM Najer Evgeniy b 1 w ½            
                         
  31 GM Gajewski Grzegorz b 1 w 1            
2
  32 IM Hera Imre w 0 b 0            
0

In the women's section Tatiana Kosintseva took clean first, two points ahead of the field. But behind her three players were tied for second and had to go through the tiebreaks to determine who got Silver and who got Bronze.


The amazing Kosintseva sisters: Tatiana and Nadezhda


Former Women's World Champion Antoaneta Stefanova, who took Silver


Nadezhda Kosintseva lost 0-2 to Stefanova to take Bronze

Women's Section – tiebreaks for bronze

A 3 GM Stefanova Antoaneta w 1 b 1
2
  4 GM Hoang Thanh Trang b 0 w 0
0
             
B 3 GM Stefanova Antoaneta w 1 b 1
2
  2 IM Kosintseva Nadezhda b 0 w 0
0

Finally there was a tiebreak game for a place in the next Women's World Championship between the players who had finished 18th and 19th in the main tournament with 7.5 points each.

Tiebreak for Women's WCh place

C 18 WIM Foisor Sabina-Francesca w 1 b 0 w 1 b 1
3
  19 IM Lomineishvili Maia b 0 w 1 b 0 w 0
1
 

Statistics and Reverbrations

The Eighth European Championships in Dresden was the biggest tournament of this level ever staged on German soil. Here are some statistics, provided by the organisers:

  • There were 550 players at the event, with a total of 184 grandmasters.

  • There were 751 paying visitors to the tournament.

  • Around one million people followed the EURO 2007 live on the Internet, with the official web site registering a total of three million page views.

  • There were 1000 acreditations, of which 100 were for journalists from all over Europe.

  • A total of 200,000 Euros were paid out as prize money to the players.

  • The youngest participant was the 11-year-old Filiz Osmanodja of the Dresden Sportgymnasium.

  • The oldest participant at 75 was Karl-Heinz Hesselbarth of Berlin.

  • 880 players took part in the many subsidiary tournaments.

  • A total of 2994 games of chess were played in the Congress Center, 2176 in the Women's section and 818 in the Open section. In addition a large number in the subsidiary tournaments.

  • The longest game was between Zoran Jovanovic of Croatia and Athashes Minasian of Armenia. It lasted 192 moves and finished at 22.08h (10:08 p.m.).

  • There were 80 volunteers assisting in the organisation of the events, many working until late at night.


The Sports Mayor of Dresden, Winfried Lehmann, thanks the volunteers

Next year the same organisers will be staging the Chess Olympiad, which will be held in the same city and the same venue. The organisers have admitted that there were glitches. "We need to overcome problems with the computer technology during the coming months, and especially our Internet presentation must be improved. In addition we are following up on complaints regarding the lighting in the hall and the food in the hotels," said Chairman Dr. Dirk Jordan. "We are very critical of our work and will learn from our mistakes," said the Mayor for Sports Winfried Lehmann.

There were some serious complaints by players, and one, GM Erik van den Doel, has published an open letter with serious accusation on the web site of the ACP (and elsewhere). Van den Doel complains that the players were forced to stay in "official hotels" at a fixed rate, which had to be paid to the organisers without any indication of how much they were paying the hotels; and that they were billed 27.50 Euros for lunch and dinner, which were completely inadaquate, since the kitchen chief had been instructed to provide meals for a value of five Euros.

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