European Senior Championships in Eretria

by Frederic Friedel
5/17/2015 – The place is almost too beautiful to allow for fighting chess. "You go for nice walks, enjoy the sunny, warm weather, the scenery, the sea, and then you tend to allow a tame draw in the afternoon," said John Nunn, who finished second behind Georgian GM Zurab Sturua. John, who recently turned sixty and was playing in the Over 50 section, has kindly annotated a game for us.

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...

15th European Senior Chess Championship

The 15th European Senior Chess Championships were held in Eretria, Greece, from the 28th of April to the 8th of May, 2015. There were two sections: Over 50 and Over 65. The tournaments were nine round Swiss with time controls of 40 moves in 90 minutes, followed by 30 minutes for the rest of the game + 30 seconds increment per move, starting from move one.

The official venue was the conference center of the four-star Eretria Village Hotel, which is near the ancient city of Eretria. Here are some pictures (from Booking.com) to make you feel envious or look forward to becoming a senior:

Group photo of some of the lucky participants

The European Senior Championships 2015 under way in Eretria

Georgian GM Zurab Sturua, rated 2536, started as as one of the favorites in the Over 50 group – and as the reigning World Senior Champion. He finished a point ahead of top seed John Nunn, 2601, who finished sole second.

The winners of the Over 50 section: John Nunn, Zurab Sturua and Keith Arkell (Bronze)

World and now European Senior Champion GM Zurab Sturua, 55, who won the
Georgian Championship in 1975, 1977, 1981, 1984 and 1985 and played for
Georgia in the Chess Olympiads of 1992, 1994, 1996, 1998, 2000 and 2002.

Top final standings of the Euro Senior Championship over 50 (nine rounds)

Rnk Sd Title Name Nat Elo Pts TB1  TB2  TB3 
1 2 GM Sturua Zurab GEO 2536 7.5 2395 47.0 51.0
2 1 GM Nunn John D M ENG 2601 6.5 2406 48.5 54.0
3 3 GM Arkell Keith C ENG 2493 6.0 2407 47.5 52.5
4 5 IM Bellia Fabrizio ITA 2433 6.0 2353 45.5 50.0
5 9 IM Berkovich Mark A ISR 2362 6.0 2317 43.0 47.0
6 8 GM Fernandes Antonio POR 2369 6.0 2293 40.5 43.0
7 23   Ilandzis Spyridon GRE 2151 6.0 2274 39.5 43.0
8 14 FM Furman Boris RUS 2217 6.0 2221 39.5 42.5
9 10 IM Petran Peter SVK 2362 5.5 2363 45.5 46.0
10 16 FM Nikolaidis Konstantinos GRE 2187 5.5 2312 40.5 43.5
11 7 IM Bruno Fabio ITA 2418 5.5 2305 43.5 47.0
12 6 GM Raetsky Alexander RUS 2419 5.5 2212 40.0 44.0
13 12 IM Smolin Sergey UKR 2272 5.5 2211 40.0 43.5
14 20 WGM Mednikova Svetlana RUS 2170 5.5 2207 40.0 40.5
15 15   Christensen Jan DEN 2199 5.5 2120 39.0 42.0

John Nunn, above in his round one game against Spiridon Ilandzis, won second place in the Over 50 section. He tells us that Eretria and the hotel not exactly conducive to vicious battles on the chessboard. "You go for nice walks, enjoy the sunny, warm weather, the scenery, the sea, and then you tend to allow a tame draw in the afternoon." John, who recently turned sixty, was one of the oldest players in the Over 50 section. He kindly annotated a game for us.

[Event "European Senior Ch 50+"] [Site "?"] [Date "2015.04.30"] [Round "?"] [White "Nunn, J."] [Black "Smolin, S."] [Result "1-0"] [ECO "B06"] [PlyCount "49"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. e4 g6 2. d4 Bg7 3. Nc3 a6 4. Be3 {I have always felt that systems involving Be3 or Bg5 pose the most danger against Pirc/Modern set-ups.} d6 5. h4 {It may seem odd to describe a move such as this as flexible, but actually it is quite useful to see how Black intends to react to the h-pawn advance before deciding whether to play Qd2 or f3.} h5 6. Qd2 b5 7. O-O-O {7 f3 and 7 Nh3 have been most often played, but there is some point to castling first. White delays f3 until it is really necessary.} Bb7 8. Nh3 Nd7 9. Ng5 e6 ({One advantage of White's move-order it that the natural} 9... Ngf6 {is bad due to} 10. e5 $1 dxe5 11. dxe5 Nxe5 12. Qxd8+ Rxd8 13. Rxd8+ Kxd8 14. f4 Nfg4 15. Bd2 {and White wins a piece for two pawns. Therefore Black has to make some kind of concession, either to play an awkward move such as}) (9... Rc8 {or to preface the knight development with the not especially constructive ...e6. Black settles on the latter course.}) 10. Kb1 Ngf6 {Black is threatening ...b4, so the time has finally come to support the centre with the f-pawn.} 11. f3 O-O $2 {Castling obviously involves some risk, as White's pieces are quite well-placed for a kingside attack. It was better to play} (11... Qe7 {keeping open the option of castling queenside and leaving White guessing about where the black king will end up.}) 12. g4 $1 {If White is going to do this, it should be played at once since he has no natural way to strengthen his position, while Black has constructive possibilities such as ...Qe7 available.} b4 {Kicking the knight to e2 blocks the white queen's path to the h-file, but the downside is that the knight is more quickly available on the kingside. However, the alternative} (12... hxg4 13. h5 gxh5 14. fxg4 Nxg4 (14... hxg4 15. Qh2 {looks extremely dangerous}) 15. Be2 $1 Ndf6 16. Bxg4 Nxg4 17. Rxh5 {gives White a massive attack in return for a single pawn.}) 13. Ne2 hxg4 14. Ng3 (14. h5 Nxh5 15. fxg4 Nhf6 {is perhaps less clear, but White can afford to spend a tempo preparing h5. Black wins another pawn, but this is not a major concern.}) 14... gxf3 {There's nothing better than to grab whatever is available.} 15. h5 Nxh5 (15... gxh5 16. Bd3 $1 {followed by Rdg1 is catastrophic.}) 16. Rxh5 {The most forceful, although the simple} (16. Nxh5 gxh5 17. Rxh5 Nf6 18. Rh4 {is also very strong.}) 16... gxh5 17. Nxh5 {White's numerical superiority in the vicinity of Black's king proves lethal.} Nf6 ({Or} 17... Qe7 18. Bc4 $1 d5 19. Nxg7 Kxg7 20. Rg1 {and wins.}) 18. Qh2 Re8 (18... Ng4 19. Qh4 Nxe3 20. Nf6+ { mates, while}) (18... Bxe4 19. Nxf6+ Qxf6 20. Nxe4 Qg6 21. Bd3 f5 22. Rg1 Qh7 23. Bh6 fxe4 24. Bxe4 Qxe4 25. Rxg7+ Kh8 26. Rg1 {leads to a quick mate.}) 19. Bd3 {The simplest, defending the important e4-pawn while preparing to swing the last white piece into the attack.} e5 (19... Nxh5 20. Qxh5 Qf6 {loses to} 21. e5) 20. Nxg7 Kxg7 21. Nh7 $1 {A neat finish, preventing the black king slipping away via f8.} Ng4 (21... Nxh7 22. Qh6+ Kh8 23. Rh1 {mates.}) 22. Rg1 { It's all over now.} Bc8 ({The tricky} 22... Qg5 {is refuted by} 23. Rxg4 $1 Qxg4 24. Qh6+ {and mate next move.}) 23. Qh6+ Kg8 24. Nf6+ Qxf6 25. Qxf6 1-0

Replay games

Select games from the dropdown menu above the board

Over 65 European Championship

Whereas the favorites were able to fulfil expectations in the Over 50 group there was a big surprise in the Over 65 section: the relatively unknown Belgian player Jan Rooze tied with Russian GM Viktor Kupreichik, who is known for his fantastic attacking style, for first place and beat him on tie-break points. GM Evgeni Vasiukov followed a point behind the two leaders for Bronze, while former Women's World Champion Nona Gaprindashvili was one point behind him in fifth place.

Top final standings of the Euro Senior Championship over 65 (nine rounds)

Rnk Sd Title Name Nat Elo Pts TB1  TB2  TB3 
1 5 IM Rooze Jan BEL 2281 7.5 2245 46.0 49.0
2 2 GM Kupreichik Viktor D BLR 2373 7.5 2234 45.0 49.5
3 1 GM Vasiukov Evgeni RUS 2416 6.5 2212 45.0 48.5
4 33   Muratoglu Salih TUR 1960 6.0 2227 44.5 49.0
5 4 GM Gaprindashvili Nona GEO 2302 5.5 2212 47.5 51.0
6 7 FM Gruzmann Boris GER 2200 5.5 2178 45.5 50.0
7 24 FM Valenti Giuseppe ITA 2052 5.5 2175 39.0 43.5
8 3 GM Pushkov Nikolai RUS 2313 5.5 2142 44.0 48.5
9 11   Stokes Michael ENG 2135 5.5 2129 38.0 40.5
10 6   Pedersen Jan Rode DEN 2208 5.0 2164 42.0 46.0
11 18   Batakovs Olegs LAT 2095 5.0 2135 38.0 40.5
12 15 FM Zhelesny Stanislav RUS 2118 5.0 2112 38.0 40.5
13 10 FM Hohler Peter SUI 2150 5.0 2067 40.0 43.5
14 17   Kaminik Aleksandar ISR 2106 5.0 2067 35.5 39.0
15 16 IM Archangelsky Mikhail RUS 2108 5.0 2041 39.0 42.5
16 19   Morriss Pete IRL 2092 5.0 2002 35.5 37.5

Replay games

Select games from the dropdown menu above the board


Links

You can use ChessBase 12 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs to replay the games in PGN. You can also download our free Playchess client, which will in addition give you immediate access to the chess server Playchess.com.


Editor-in-Chief of the ChessBase News Page. Studied Philosophy and Linguistics at the University of Hamburg and Oxford, graduating with a thesis on speech act theory and moral language. He started a university career but switched to science journalism, producing documentaries for German TV. In 1986 he co-founded ChessBase.
Discussion and Feedback Join the public discussion or submit your feedback to the editors


Discuss

Rules for reader comments

 
 

Not registered yet? Register