Snowdrops beat Oldhands 18:14 in Marienbad

11/30/2010 – Victory came with the penultimate round, which the young female talents won 3:1. It mattered not that the legendary veterans could score a revenge 3:1 in the final round. The young ladies took the match by four points. Humpy Koneru was the top player with 6.0/8 points, Vlastimil Hort the top male with 5.0/8. We bring you a final illustrated report with pictures and portraits of the players.

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Snowdrops and Oldhands – Czech Coal Match 2010

From 20 November till 27 November the city of Marianske Lazne once again hosted a match between a rising generation of female chess players and chess legends of the 20th century. The rising generation this year was represented by the Indian grandmaster Humpy Koneru, currently the world second highest rated female player, the Lithuanian grandmaster Viktorija Cmilyte, the Philippine born Australian WIM Arianne Caoili and the Czech WIM Tereza Olsarova. The 20th century chess legends were Lájoš Portisch, Vlastimil Hort, Dragoljub Velimirovic and Wolfgang Uhlmann. The games were played at the Villa Butterfly Hotel in Marienbad, the rate of play was 90 minutes for 40 moves, 30 minutes for the rest, with an increament of 30 seconds per move.

In round seven the Snowdrops clinched it, with a 3-1 win over the Oldhands, with Vlastimil Hort suffering his first defeat in this event – with the white pieces, in a queen ending against Viktorija Cmilyte. The score between the two teams was now 17:11, so that the ladies could no longer be caught, whatever the result of the final round.

Which, it turned out, was a good thing for the Snowdrops, as the Oldhands came back with a vengence on the last day. Lajos Portisch, who had lost three games in a row, managed a black-piece win against Arianne Caoili, who played over ambitiously for a kingside win. Vlastimil Hort went after Tereza Olšarová in the endgame, knowing that this was the Czech WIM's weakest point. The other two games were drawn and the final standing was 18:14 in favour of the Snowdrops.

Round seven: Friday, November 26, 2010
Lajos Portisch 
0-1
 Humpy Koneru
Dragoljub Velimirovic 
½-½
 Arianne Caoili
Wolfgang Uhlmann 
½-½
 Tereza Olsarova
Vlastimil Hort 
0-1
 Viktorija Cmilyte
Round eight: Saturday, November 27, 2010
Humpy Koneru 
½-½
 Dragoljub Velimirovic
Arianne Caoili 
0-1
 Lajos Portisch
Tereza Olsarova 
0-1
 Vlastimil Hort
Viktorija Cmilyte 
½-½
 Wolfgang Uhlmann

Team results

R1
R2
R3
R4
R5
R6
R7
R8
Snowdrops
3
1
3.5
2.5
2.0
2.0
3.0
1.0
Oldhands
1
3
0.5
1.5
2.0
2.0
1.0
3.0
Total Snowdrops
3
4
7.5
10
12
14
17
18
Total Oldhands
1
4
4.5
6
8
10
11
14

Individual results

O1
O2
O3
O4
O1
O2
O3
O4
Total
S1 Humpy Koneru
1
0
1
1/2
1
1/2
1
1
6.0
S2 Arianne Caoili
1
1/2
0
1
0
0
0
1/2
3.0
S3 Tereza Olsarova
1
0
1/2
0
1/2
1/2
1
0
3.5
S4 Viktorija Cmilyte
1/2
1/2
1
1
1
1
1/2
0
5.5
S1
S2
S3
S4
S1
S2
S3
S4
Total
O1 Wolfgang Uhlmann
0
1
1/2
0
0
0
0
1/2
2.0
O2 Vlastimil Hort
1/2
1
1/2
1/2
1
1/2
1
0
5.0
O3 Lajos Portisch
0
1
0
1/2
0
1
1/2
0
3.0
O4 Dragoljub Velimirovic  
0
1/2
1
1
1/2
0
1
0
4.0


The winners: Viktorija Cmilyte, Arianne Caoili, Humpy Koneru and Tereza Olsarova


The best players from both teams: Humpy Koneru and Vlastimil Hort

Player portraits

Lajos Portisch, born on 4th April 1937, is known for his precise positional play – which earned him the nickname "The Hungarian Botvinnik" and frequent comparisons to Capablanca. He was one of the strongest grandmasters 60th and 70th outside the Soviet Union. He participated in numerous interzonal chess tournaments and advanced to a total of eight Candidates matches of candidates. In addition to chess he plays the violin and sings.

Vlastimil Hort is a living legend of Czechoslovakian chess. He was born on 12 January 1944, and from the age of 14 onwards was a regular contender in the final of Czechoslovakian adult championships, winning it several times (1970, 1971, 1972, and 1975). He became a Candidate for the world championship in 1977, losing narrowly to Boris Spassky. He calmed his nerves with a simul in Reykjavik with 550 contenders and a result of 477:10 (with 63 draws). He has also played a blindfold simul against 22 players. Vlastimil, who lives in Germany, is known for his superb feeling for position and his sensitive technique.

Wolfgang Uhlmann was born on 29th March 1935 in Germany, became a GM at 21, and won multiple championships of the German Democratic Republic. He represented his country on eleven chess Olympiads, and in 1964 was the best player of the Olympiad. Uhlmann is acknowledged as one of the world's leading experts on the French Defence, having refined and improved many of its variations and authored books on the opening.

Dragoljub Velimirovic was born on 12th May 1942, and represented Yugoslavia six times in the Chess Olympiads. The Serbian grandmaster is a renowned and feared attacker and his name has a sharp and popular version of the Sicilian Defense.

Humpy Koneru was born on 31st March 1987, became an IM at the age of fifteen, the youngest female player to gained the title. In 2002 she collected the title of international grandmaster (GM) and in 2007 became the second woman, after Judita Polgar, in the history of chess to rise above the 2600 Elo threshold. She also became the second highest ranked female chessplayers and still holds that position today.

Viktorija Cmilyte was born on 6th August 1983. The Lithuanian grandmaster is a double champion of her country and has represented it six times at chess Olympiads, twice winning the individual prize on the first board. Viktorija was married to GM Alexei Shirov and has two children.

Arianne Caoili was born on 22nd December 1986 in the Philippines, the country of her father (her mother is Dutch). She now plays for Australia – at the Olympiad in Dresden 2008 on board one. She will be best remembered for an incident at the Bermuda party in Turin 2006, which left her famous and the girlfriend of Levon Aronian.

Tereza Olšarová was born on 16th May 1991. Her chess style is quite sharp, she plays offensive and even aggressive chess. At last year's world championship of girls under 18 years she ended on 13th place. She was engaged in competitive figure-skating for seven years, but today concentrates on her studies at FTK in Olomouc.

All pictures © Vladimir Jagr


Links

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