Kings and Queens in China

by Johannes Fischer
11/26/2015 – The Chinese chess players like to practice and often play against each other. From 24. November to 1. December eight of the country's best men and eight of the best women players meet in Taizhou to play the 1st China Chess Kings and Queens Matches, a short knock-out tournament. The first round led to interesting games and brought some surprises.

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Kings

 

The line-up of the King's Tournament is impressive: Six of the top eight of the country start, only Li Chao (2.) and Wang Hao (7.) are missing. They are replaced by Zhao Jun (12.) and Lu Shanglei (13.). But in the first round Lu Shanglei showed how dangerous he is and eliminated Ding Liren - though he needed some luck to do so.

 

No luck in the first round: Ding Liren

Lu Shanglei, World Junior Champion 2014 (Photo: Amruta Mokal)

Chinese prodigy Wei fared much better. After a draw in the first game he scored a convincing win against Zhao Jun.

 

Wei Yi

Wang Yue, China's top board at the Chess Olympiad 2014 in Tromso, lost to Bu Xiangzhi. After a draw in the first round he risked opening duel in a topical variation and fell victim to a vicious counter-attack.

 

Wang Yue

After two draws in the first two games the match between Yu Yangyi and Ni Hua was decided in the tie-break. Yu Yangyi won through a victory in game three, in which he stubbornly and patiently looked for chances in a rather blocked position that seemed hard to win.

 

Yu Yangyi

In the second round Bu Xiangzi plays against Lu Shanglei and Yu Yangyi against Wei Yi. The first games of both matches ended in a draw.

All games

 

Queens

China's top woman player Hou Yifan is missing in the Queens Tournament but with Ju Wenjun (2.), Zhao Xue (3.), Tan Zongyi (4.), Shen Yang (5.), Ding Yixin (7.), Lei Tingjie (8.) and Guo Qi (9.) the line-up is still impressively strong. The 13-year old talent Zhu Jiner completed the field.

However, in the first round Zhu Jiner had to play against Ju Wenjun and lost. After a draw in the first game Ju Wenjun convincingly outplayed her young opponent with Black in a positional Najdorf that led to a middlegame with opposite-colored bishops.

 

 

Ding Yixin managed to beat Shen Yang - here the first game of their match proved decisive. In this game Shen Yang played with Black and managed to seize the initiative right after the opening but then ran into a surprisingly strong counterattack.

 

Shen Yang

Tan Zhongyi came to a 1.5-0.5 victory against Lei Tingjie and Guo Qi scored a clear 2-0 win against Zhao Xue. But Guo Qi's winning streak ended in the semi-finals where she lost the first game against Tan Zhongyi. Ding Yixin and Ju Wenjun started their match with a draw.

Tan Zongyi

All games

 

Photos: Tournament page...



Johannes Fischer was born in 1963 in Hamburg and studied English and German literature in Frankfurt. He now lives as a writer and translator in Nürnberg. He is a FIDE-Master and regularly writes for KARL, a German chess magazine focusing on the links between culture and chess. On his own blog he regularly publishes notes on "Film, Literature and Chess".
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