Hoogeveen win World Cities Team Champion in Al Ain

12/28/2012 – The Dutch team, featuring Anish Giri, Ivan Sokolov, Sergey Tiviakov and Jan Smeets, went through the knock-out phase of the event successfully, eliminating Saratov, Tashkent and finally Baku in the finals. The hero of the Hoogeveen team was Sergey Tiviakov, who scored the decisive wins in the quarter-finals and the finals. Baku came second, Novi Sad third. Here are all the games and results.

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World Cities Chess Team Champion

This event is held at two-year intervals, with teams representing cities (maximum one city per country). National federations are eligible to play with their national team members representing a city. The FIDE World Cities Championship is a sequel to the Chess Olympiad and Continental Cities Championships.

The Al Ain Chess Club of the United Arab Emirates Chess Federation has committed to organize the World Cities Championship for the Sheikh Zayed Cup for five times until 2020. The prize fund for the 2012 edition is $150,000.

24 teams were at the start of the tournament. Each was ranked by the average rating of their four strongest players as per the 1st December FIDE rating list. If two or more teams have the same average they are ranked according to the rating of the fifth player and then alphabetically. The teams were divided into groups of four teams each, and each group played a single round robin tournament. The top two from each group advanced to the Round-of-16, together with the four best 3rd placed teams.

Quarter-finals

Baku (above right) was the first to go through as they outclassed the Wu Xi team of China 3:1. The Azerbaijan strategy paid off as Eltaj Safarli and Gadir Guseinov held to draws the two stronger Chinese players, GM Wang Yue and Ji Dan. The battle shifted to the lower boards. Baku’s GM Rauf Mamedov outplayed Li Wenliang and Nidjat Mamedov outmaneuvered Fang Yuxiang to give Baku the 3:1 victory and a slot in the semifinals.

Next to qualify was Novi Sad (above). Robert Markus used the King’s Indian Defense to beat Hans Tikannen on board three for Lund, Sweden. Milos Perunovic defeated Pontus Carlsson in 39 moves. The win by Nils Grandelius on the top board against Ivan Ivanisevic came too late to change the knock-out result.

Tashkent qualified next, at the expense of Athens, Greece. Saidali Iuldachev scored first on board four against Andreas Tzermiadianos in 38 moves of a Ruy Lopez. After two draws on the middle boards, Marat Dzhumaev sealed the win for Tashkent by beating Ioannis Papaioannou for a 3:1 score. The fourth placed semifinalist receives $10,000 prize money out of a total $150,000 in this team tournament.

In the last match of the round Hoogeveen came from behind to beat Saratov. The Russians scored first, as Alexei Iljushin beat Jan Smeets on board four in 41 moves. Much was expected of Dutch top board Anish Giri, but he was held to a draw by Evgeny Tomasevsky. Dutch captain Ivan Sokolov also drew on second board with Igor Lysyj leaving the decision to the third board match between Hoogeveen’s Sergei Tiviakov and Evgeny Romanov.


The hero of the quarter-finals Sergey Tiviakov (picture from an earlier round)

The Russian GM lost a pawn on the 43rd move, but the game looked drawish, which would give the victory to the Russians. It was nearly midnight and everyone left in the hall had their eyes glued to the monitor as Tiviakov nursed a one pawn advantage in a precise same-colored bishop endgame to force resignation on the 67th move. This meant Hoogeveen had won the match by the Berlin system, where more weight is put on the higher boards.

Here are all the results:

2.1
Hoogeveen – NED
2.0–2.0
Saratov – RUS
1
Giri Anish
½:½
Tomashevsky Evgeny
2
Sokolov Ivan
½:½
Lysyj Igor
3
Tiviakov Sergei
1:0
Romanov Evgeny
4
Smeets Jan
0:1
Iljushin Alexei
2.2
Tashkent – UZB
3.0–1.0
Athens – GRE
1
Dzhumaev Marat
1:0
Papaioannou Ioannis
2
Kvon Andrey
½:½
Banikas Hristos
3
Barsov Alexei
½:½
Halkias Stelios
4
Iuldachev Saidali
1:0
Tzermiadianos Andreas
2.3
Baku – AZE
3.0–1.0
Wu Xi – CHN
1
Safarli Eltaj
½:½
Wang Yue
2
Guseinov Gadir
½:½
Ji Dan
3
Mamedov Rauf
1:0
Li Wenliang
4
Mamedov Nidjat
1:0
Fang Yuxiang
2.4
Novi Sad – SRB
2½–1½
Lund – SWE
1
Ivanisevic Ivan
0:1
Grandelius Nils
2
Markus Robert
1:0
Tikkanen Hans
3
Perunovic Milos
1:0
Carlsson Pontus
4
Sedlak Nikola
½:½
Smith Axel

Semi-finals

Hoogeveen drubbed Tashkent 3:1 to advance to the final match, while Baku outclassed Novi Sad 3.5-0.5 to climb to the last rung of the knockout.

1.1
Tashkent – UZB
1.0–3.0
Hoogeveen – NED
1
Dzhumaev Marat
0:1
Giri Anish
2
Kvon Andrey
0:1
Sokolov Ivan
3
Barsov Alexei
½:½
Tiviakov Sergei
4
Iuldachev Saidali
½:½
Smeets Jan
1.2
Novi Sad – SRB
0½ – 3½
Baku – AZE
1
Ivanisevic Ivan
0:1
Safarli Eltaj
2
Markus Robert
0:1
Guseinov Gadir
3
Perunovic Milos
½:½
Mamedov Rauf
4
Sedlak Nikola
0:1
Durarbayli Vasif

In the match Hoogeveen vs Tashkent Ivan Sokolov made short work of IM Andrey Kvon’s Nimzo Indian Defense when he posted his queen deep in Black’s territory and added pressure with doubled rooks. Kvon lost a pawn and resigned on the 33rd moves under the mounting attack. On board three, the previous round's hero Sergei Tiviakov also used the Nimzo Indian Defense but could only draw with Alexei Barsov in 41 moves. Anish Giri, playing black on the top board, used the Sicilian Scheveningen to seal the win for Hoogeveen as he defeated Tashkent’s Marat Dzhumaev. With the match already decided, the fourth board game continued between Jan Smeets of Hoogeveen and Saidali Iuldachev of Tashkent up to 77 moves close to midnight.

First to finish in the Baku-Novi Sad Match was Vasif Durarbayli of Azerbaijan. He crushed the French Defense Tarrasch Variation of Nikola Sedlak; who blundered with an overworked queen. On board three Milos Perunovic of Novi Sad attacked the Closed Sicilian Defense of Rauf Mamedov and won the black queen in exchange for a rook and knight. The bishop pair of Mamedov allowed for a perpetual check for a draw on the 33rd move.

Young Eltaj Safarli, playing black on top board for Baku, also opted for the Sicilian Defense against Ivan Ivanisevic of Novi Sad. In the Closed variation, Safarli allowed the exchange of his queen for a rook and two pieces. He advanced his rook pawn and, faced with a promotion, Ivanisevic resigned on the 38th move. With the match already won, Gadir Guseinov of Baku embarked on a kingside pawn storm against the Philidor Defense of Robert Markus of Novi Sad. Guseinov penetrated with his queen and wove a mating net to force resignation on the 37th move.

Finals

The Dutch team of Hoogeveen won the World Cities Team Championship, beating Baku by 2.5:1.5. The hero was again Sergei Tiviakov, who played the only decisive game against Nidjat Mamedov. In the match for third place Novi Sad (Serbia) beat Tashkent (Uzbekistan) by virtue of the the Berlin System tiebreak of the 2.0-2.0 final score.

1.1
Hoogeveen – NED
2.5–1.5
Baku – AZE
1
Giri Anish
½:½
Safarli Eltaj
2
Sokolov Ivan
½:½
Mamedov Rauf
3
Tiviakov Sergei
1:0
Mamedov Nidjat
4
Smeets Jan
½:½
Durarbayli Vasif
1.2
Novi Sad – SRB
2.0–2.0
Tashkent – UZB
1
Ivanisevic Ivan
1:0
Dzhumaev Marat
2
Markus Robert
½:½
Kvon Andrey
3
Perunovic Milos
½:½
Barsov Alexei
4
Sedlak Nikola
0:1
Iuldachev Saidali

The Hoogeveen team won $21,000 out of the $150,000 prize fund. “We purposely had only four players, to have fewer people to share the prize,” Hoogeveen captain Ivan Sokolov said.


The winners from Hoogeveen: Ivan Sokolov, Anish Giri, Sergei Tiviakov and Jan Smeets

Score tree of the knock-out phase


Links

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