Everything still open at the European Youth Championships in Prague

8/26/2016 – The European Youth Chess Championships are played from 17th to 28th of August in Prague. It is a huge tournament and young talents from all over Europe start in the age groups U8, 10, 12, 14, 16 and 18, boys and girls. In each group eight rounds are played and after five rounds everything is, of course, still open, but the blitz- and rapid tournaments played on the free day had a winner.

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European Youth Championship is slowly coming to its conclusion

By Petr Pisk, petr.pisk@centrum.cz

The staged battles of the opening ceremony were the prelude to real battles on the chessboard

Follow the games live on playchess.com

Two thirds of the tournament are behind us and so is the free day which offered the participants a chance to take part in excursions and side-events.

As expected, most of the participants opted for a trip to the historical centre of Prague. Prague is said to be one of the most beautiful cities in Europe and rightly so. We visited the old town square, the Jewish quarter and the Charles bridge but could not show more than a glimpse of what Prague has to offer. Those who just wanted to have fun could go to the Aquapalace Prague – the largest water park in the Czech Republic. For the more technically oriented a trip to the National Museum of Technique and a visit of the old waster water treatment plant in Bubenec was offered.

Those who stayed at the hotel could participate in a rapid tournament with 42 players (including four Fide-Masters and three International Masters). The tournament was won by 15-year old Yevgeniy Roshka from Ukraine.

The blitz-tournament in the evening was much larger and attracted 192 players, among them 24 Fide-Masters, six International Masters and even one Grandmaster. But in the end it was the 16-year old FM Gokerkan Cem Kaan from Turkey who won the tournament.

The last game of round 9 was important for the final standings (Photo: Tournament page)

But of course everybody focuses on the championship. Despite the many age groups there are only two players who lead by a full point. In the category G14 Aleksandra Maltsevskaya (2341) from Russia managed to do so. She is clear favorite in her age-group and in the past years this extraordinary young lady has been very successful at the European Youth Chess Championship – in 2014 she finished third (in category G12) and in 2015 she became second (G14). She is more than 50 Elo-points ahead of the second seed and seems to be determined to win gold.

More surprising is the lead of FM Viachaslau Zarubitski (2300) from Belarus in category B14. This young gentleman is a very good player and at the EYCC 2014 he won a bronze medal (B12) and at the World Youth Championship 2014 he won silver (B12). However, during the last two years his rating has not improved as much as the ratings of his rivals and therefore he started as number 12 on the ranking list. But he definitely proved that rating is not everything and has good chances to win the championship.

Look into the main playing hall (Photo: Tournament page)

Three exciting and important rounds still lie ahead and in most groups everything can still happen. Thus we highly recommend watching the live games so you don’t miss the most interesting part of the tournament.

Tournament page


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