President's Cup Baku 2010 – Mamedyarov leads

4/29/2010 – Four local grandmaster (Mamadyarov, Rajabov, Mamadov and Guseinov) are joined by four foreigners (Kramnik, Kamsky, Polgar and Sutovsky) are taking part in an eight-player rapid round robin event in Baku, Azerbaijan. After two rounds Shakhriyar Mamedyarov is in the lead, after having beaten Vladimir Kramnik in the second round. Illustrated report.

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President's Cup Baku 2010

This eight-player round robin event is taking place in Baku, Azerbaijan, from 29th April to 2nd May 2010. The time controls are 25 minutes per side per game, with two or three games per day on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. On Sunday there is blitz tournament. All games are being broadcast live on the official site and on Playchess. Here is the schedule:

29 April 1st round 19:00   2nd round  20:15      
30 April 3rd round 18:00   4th round 19:15   5th round  20:30
1 May 6th round 12:00   7th round 13:15      
2 May Blitz tournament  14:00            

The "President's Cup" is dedicated to the memorial of the national leader Haydar Aliyev and is being held in the Park Inn hotel. Half of the players are from Azerbaijan and half from abroad. The Azeris are Shakhriyar Mamadyarov, Teimour Rajabov, Rauf Mamadov and Gadir Guseinov (or Qədir Hüsynov in Azerbaijani), the foreign players are Vladimir Kramnik (Russia), Gata Kamsky (USA), Judit Polgar (Hungary) and Emil Sutovsky (Israel).


The drawing of lots Azeri style – with Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and organiser Faik Gasamov


Emil Sutovsky, Israel, picks a carpet and with that draws a number

Shakhriyar Mamadyarov beat the only female player of the tournament, Judit Polgar; Rauf Mamadov lost to ex-world champion Vladimir Kramnik; Gadir Guseinov lost with white to Emil Sutovsky; and Teymur Rajabov lost to Gata Kamsky. So all four games were decisive.


In the first round Gata Kamsky (USA, right) defeated Teimour Radjabov from Azerbaijan

Judit Polgar drew Teimour Radjabov in an unusual Sicilian in 25 moves; the local players Rauf Mamadov and Gadir Guseinov drew their game, as did Emil Sutovski and Gata Kamski; and in the most important pairing Shakhriyar Mamadyarov beat Vladimir Kramnik in 48 moves, on the black side of a Ragozin. Shakh became the leader of the table, which was good news for the editor who had asked our readers about the identity of a future GM.


Kamsky vs Sutovsky and Guseinov vs Mamedov in round two – in front of the giant portrait
of Haydar Aliyev (1923-2003), who dominated political life in Azerbaijan for over 30 years.


A critical game: Shakh Mamedyarov beats Vladimir Kramnik in round two

Standings after the first two rounds


Links

The games are being broadcast live on the official web site and, with friendly support of the organisers, on the chess server Playchess.com. If you are not a member you can download the free PGN reader ChessBase Light, which gives you immediate access. You can also use the program to read, replay and analyse PGN games. New and enhanced: CB Light 2009!


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