L'Ami's rampage continues

by Alejandro Ramirez
3/17/2015 – He seems unstoppable! Even with a bad position today against Julio Granda, Erwin l'Ami was able to overcome the difficulties and emerge victorious. This win puts him a full point ahead of a large pack of players with 6.5/8. With only two rounds to go, things are looking good for l'Ami. In round 9 he plays Hrant Melkumyan, who still hopes to take the title. Update.

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The Reykjavik Open 2015 will be held for the 30th time from March 10th to March 18th 2015 in Harpa, the 28.000 sqm. concert hall. The 2015 tournament is expected to be very strong and will double as celebration of the 80th birthday of legendary Icelandic Grandmaster and former FIDE president, Fridrik Olafsson.

The 2014 Edition was voted the 2nd best open tournament in the world by ACP. Only Gibraltar was higher on the list.

The City of Reykjavík has sponsored the tournament since its inception in 1964, when Mikhail Tal won it with a record 12½ points out of 13. The tournament was initially held every two years, but has since 2008 taken place every year. It was closed i.n its early years, but has been an open event since the 1980s. Throughout its history the Reykjavik Open has featured many of the strongest chess players in the world at the time, including Mikhail Tal, Nona Gaprindashvili, David Bronstein, Vasili Smyslov, Bent Larsen, Friðrik Ólafsson, Mark Taimanov, Lev Polugaevsky, Jan Timman, Victor Korchnoi, Samuel Reshevsky, Anthony Miles, Nigel Short, Hikaru Nakamura, Judit Polgar, Magnus Carlsen, Alexander Grischuk, Fabiano Caruana and Hou Yifan.

Round Eight

Bo. Name Rtg Pts. Result Pts. Name Rtg
1 Granda Zuniga Julio E 2646 6 0 - 1 L'ami Erwin 2605
2 Eljanov Pavel 2727 6 ½ - ½ 6 Naroditsky Daniel 2633
3 Hansen Eric 2566 6 ½ - ½ Mamedyarov Shakhriyar 2756
4 Navara David 2736 0 - 1 Fier Alexandr 2601
5 Melkumyan Hrant 2676 1 - 0 Maze Sebastien 2564
6 Stopa Jacek 2544 ½ - ½ Movsesian Sergei 2665
7 Hammer Jon Ludvig 2651 1 - 0 Danielsen Henrik 2514
8 Jones Gawain C B 2642 1 - 0 Idani Pouya 2496
9 Pakleza Zbigniew 2498 ½ - ½ Gupta Abhijeet 2625
10 Grandelius Nils 2603 5 1 - 0 5 Galego Luis 2461
11 Abdumalik Zhansaya 2379 5 1 - 0 5 Steingrimsson Hedinn *) 2530
12 Preotu Razvan 2447 5 ½ - ½ 5 Cornette Matthieu 2585
13 Jussupow Artur 2573 5 1 - 0 5 Gunnarsson Jon Viktor 2443
14 Stefansson Hannes 2560 5 ½ - ½ 5 Esserman Marc 2426
15 Arngrimsson Dagur 2366 5 ½ - ½ 5 Gretarsson Hjorvar Steinn 2554
16 Le Roux Jean-Pierre 2548 5 0 - 1 5 Norowitz Yaacov 2422
17 Gao Rui 2533 5 ½ - ½ 5 L'ami Alina 2393
18 Rasmussen Allan Stig 2532 5 ½ - ½ 5 Khademalsharieh Sarasadat 2357
19 Grover Sahaj 2519 5 1 - 0 5 Hauge Lars Oskar 2380
20 Libiszewski Fabien 2514 5 1 - 0 5 Nguyen Thai Dai Van 2338

All results...

What a victory for Erwin l'Ami, and one that came with sweat and suffering. Julio Granda, the Peruvian magician, was conjuring up a positional victory slowly but surely, outplaying his Dutch rival and reaching a pleasant endgame. But Granda faltered and l'Ami took advantage of it in an excellent way. He won a piece, and with this extra piece he ground down Granda in an endgame that was far from trivial.

 

Eljanov was unable to beat Naroditsky, while Hansen was held to a draw by Mamedyarov. This means that l'Ami is a full point ahead in the standings and that there is a huge contingency of people with 6.5/8 that follow him. This does not include Mamedyarov, who only has 6.0/8, or Navara, who fell to the powerful Aleaxndr Fier.

 

Ex-World Championship candidate Artur Jussupow also played a fine game and used one of his pet lines to beat Jon Viktor Gunnarsson.

 

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An interesting endgame occurred in the game between Hannes Stefansson and Marc Esserman.

 

 

Impressions by Alina l'Ami

The reason the night owls, alias the chess players, can
be seen during breakfast in this tournament... the view is incredible!

Expect the unexpected in Reykjavik, at least concerning the weather

Oh, did I mention the view?

A sculpture close to the playing hall

Erwin l'Ami continues on his winning streak with 7.5/8

Julio Granda from Peru

Shakhriyar Mamedyarov is 1.5 points behind the leader

Hammer won an important game and is tied for second

Alexander Fier with a huge victory with Black over Navara

Sergei Movsesian was unable to overcome Jacek Stopa

Very unusual material balances were seen in this game

Eric Hansen with a draw against the number one seed

Danya Naroditsky feeling tired after eight long rounds

Another view of the playing hall

Standings after round eight

Rk. Name FED RtgI Pts. Rp n rtg+/-
1 L'ami Erwin NED 2605 7.5 2931 8 24.1
2 Eljanov Pavel UKR 2727 6.5 2741 8 2.5
3 Fier Alexandr BRA 2601 6.5 2742 8 15.1
4 Naroditsky Daniel USA 2633 6.5 2691 8 7.2
5 Jones Gawain C B ENG 2642 6.5 2634 8 0.2
6 Hansen Eric CAN 2566 6.5 2671 8 10.8
7 Melkumyan Hrant ARM 2676 6.5 2666 8 0.7
8 Hammer Jon Ludvig NOR 2651 6.5 2609 8 -1.9
9 Stopa Jacek POL 2544 6.0 2637 8 10.8
10 Mamedyarov Shakhriyar AZE 2756 6.0 2714 8 -2.2
11 Libiszewski Fabien FRA 2514 6.0 2593 6 6.9
12 Gupta Abhijeet IND 2625 6.0 2650 7 2.8
13 Granda Zuniga Julio E PER 2646 6.0 2655 7 1.8
14 Jussupow Artur GER 2573 6.0 2642 7 6.6
15 Pakleza Zbigniew POL 2498 6.0 2564 8 7.9
16 Christiansen Johan-Sebastian NOR 2351 6.0 2530 8 40.2
17 Movsesian Sergei ARM 2665 6.0 2572 8 -6.0
18 Grandelius Nils SWE 2603 6.0 2581 8 -1.1
19 Norowitz Yaacov USA 2422 6.0 2487 8 9.0
20 Abdumalik Zhansaya KAZ 2379 6.0 2525 8 33.0

Pairings Round Nine

Bo. Name Rtg Pts. Result Pts. Name Rtg
1 L'ami Erwin 2605   Melkumyan Hrant 2676
2 Eljanov Pavel 2727   Hansen Eric 2566
3 Naroditsky Daniel 2633   Hammer Jon Ludvig 2651
4 Fier Alexandr 2601   Jones Gawain C B 2642
5 Mamedyarov Shakhriyar 2756 6   6 Stopa Jacek 2544
6 Movsesian Sergei 2665 6   6 Grover Sahaj 2519
7 Libiszewski Fabien 2514 6   6 Granda Zuniga Julio E 2646
8 Gupta Abhijeet 2625 6   6 Abdumalik Zhansaya 2379
9 Norowitz Yaacov 2422 6   6 Grandelius Nils 2603
10 Pakleza Zbigniew 2498 6   6 Jussupow Artur 2573
11 Steingrimsson Hedinn *) 2530 5   5 Vuilleumier Alexandre 2349
12 Cornette Matthieu 2585   6 Christiansen Johan-Sebastian 2351
13 Esserman Marc 2426   Navara David 2736
14 Maze Sebastien 2564   Sequera Paolini Jose Rafael 2408
15 Tania Sachdev 2404   Stefansson Hannes 2560
16 Gretarsson Hjorvar Steinn 2554   Soors Stef 2408
17 Thorfinnsson Bjorn 2403   Gao Rui 2533
18 Foisor Cristina-Adela 2394   Rasmussen Allan Stig 2532
19 Danielsen Henrik 2514   L'ami Alina 2393
20 Idani Pouya 2496   Arngrimsson Dagur 2366

All pairings of round nine...

Don't forget you can follow the action live on our www.playchess.com server.

Photos by Alina l'Ami

Replay Round Eight (top boards)

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Topics Open, Reykjavik

Grandmaster Alejandro Ramirez has been playing tournament chess since 1998. His accomplishments include qualifying for the 2004 and 2013 World Cups as well as playing for Costa Rica in the 2002, 2004 and 2008 Olympiads. He currently has a rating of 2583 and is author of a number of popular and critically acclaimed ChessBase-DVDs.
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Jim Daniluk Jim Daniluk 3/17/2015 06:29
"Hansen was held to a draw by Mamedyarov." I'm sure Eric will be pleased to hear that he was the favored Player in this matchup with Shak !
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