Women's World Championship starts in Tirana – first game drawn

11/14/2011 – The match started with Koneru Humpy exerting tremendous pressure on the Chinese prodigy Hou Yifan right from the opening. Hou showed great resilience and patience, as she decided to defend to the point of sacrificing a pawn to reach a defendable endgame. Despite Humpy's persistence, the game was eventually drawn, but not for lack of fighting spirit! Full illustrated report with GM commentary.

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The FIDE Women’s World Chess Championship Match between the current World Champion Hou Yifan of China and her challenger, Koneru Humpy of India, is being staged in the Triana International Hotel from November 14 to 30. The time control is 90 minutes for the first 40 moves, followed by 30 minutes for the rest of the game, with an increment of 30 seconds per move starting from move one. The winner of the ten-game match is the first player to reach 5.5 points or more. The prize fund is 200,000 Euro, with 60% going to the winner. The games start at 15:00h local time, which is also Central European Time = 17:00 Moscow, 19:30 New Delhi, 22:00h Beijing and 09:00 New York. You can find the starting time for other locations here.

Game one

Pictorial impressions of game one

By Frederic Friedel


This is what the stage looked like on Sunday, when it was still being built


A choice of chairs for the players


Arbiter Panagiotis NIkolopoulos and Frederic Friedel pre-testing the table and chairs


The red one! World Champion Hou Yifan comes first and gets first pick of the chairs


Challenger Humpy (with her father right) is happy with the blue high-back


Albanian TV Channel One arrives to do a broadcast of the match


The entrance to the playing hall in the Triana International Hotel lobby


On Monday at 2:45 p.m. the players and public start to enter


Yifan gets a metal detector scan by Arbiter Carol Jarecki


She gets checked from head to toe – Carol is very meticulous


The World Champion: 17-year-old Chinese GM Hou Yifan


Koneru Humpy, the second strogest female play in chess history


The challenger ready to start game one


Note how the players have (very carefully) pointed their knights and bishops


For years now Yifan always brings along her little silver pot with Chinese raisins


General sustenance for each player during the game


FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov symbolically makes the first move for Humpy


After some instructions the chief sponsor executes the first black move with the knight


The President and his sponsor: Rezart Taci of Taci Oil International


After her third move, g3, Humpy covers her eyes and sinks into thought


After a number of minutes in that position she snaps out of it and plays her fourth move


Camera lady Qi Yu captures it all for the Xinhua News Agency


FIDE Deputy President Georgios Makropulos and Ashok Koneru


Game one under way, with around 20 spectators, which increases to fifty by the end


FIDE brass in the lobby: (clockwise from the top) Deputy President Georgios Makropoulos, Member, Appeals Committee Beatriz Marinello, President of the Turkish Chess Federation Ali Nihat Yazici, Berik Balgabaev, Advisor to FIDE President


You tell us who is winning: the President plays chess in the VIP suite


In the press room: WGMs Anastasia Karlovich and Anna Burtasova, well known to our readers


Nastja working on the pictures she has taken with her Canon 5D Mark II

Schedule

Sunday 13 November 2011    Opening ceremony
Monday 14 November 2011 Game one
Tuesday 15 November 2011 Game two
Wednesday    16 November 2011 Rest day
Thursday 17 November 2011 Game three
Friday 18 November 2011 Game four
Saturday 19 November 2011 Rest day
Sunday 20 November 2011 Game five
Monday 21 November 2011 Game six
Tuesday 22 November 2011 Rest day
Wednesday 23 November 2011 Game seven
Thursday 24 November 2011 Game eight
Friday 25 November 2011 Rest day
Saturday 26 November 2011 Game nine
Sunday 27 November 2011 Rest day
Monday 28 November 2011 Game ten
Tuesday 29 November 2011 Rest day
Wednesday 30 November 2011 Tie-break, closing   

Links

The games are being broadcast live on the official web site and on the chess server Playchess.com. If you are not a member you can download a free Playchess client there and get immediate access. You can also use ChessBase 11 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs.

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