World Team 01: Black Day

11/27/2013 – The World Team Championship has started in Antalya, Turkey. The top teams in the world are competing in this round robin event and today was an exciting round. Armenia drew Russia with no decisive games while all the other matches ended in a 2.5-1.5 score. Every victory came with the black pieces, even in the Germany-Egypt match which featured three decisive games. Round one report.

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The World Chess Team Championship is currently being held in Antalya, Turkey. The tournament runs from November 26th to December 5th. The tournament is a round robin tournament between the best countries in the world who are sending their top participants. The event will have zero tolerance rules, no draw offers for the first 30 moves and will be played under the standard team tournament system with two points given to a match winner, one for a draw and zero the the loser of a match. Tiebreaks will be decided by board points. The time control is the FIDE 90 minutes for 40 moves and an additional 30 minutes at move 40 with thirty second increment throughout the game.

The following teams are participating in the tournament:

GERMANY
1 GM KHENKIN IGOR 2612
2 GM MEIER GEORG 2623
3 GM FRIDMAN DANIEL 2600
4 GM NAIDITSCH ARKADIJ 2727
5 GM BARAMIDZE DAVID 2614

Germany is the qualifier from Europe (they won the Euro Team Championship last year) and are not exactly the favorite to take this event. However they have dangerous players and they are using the interesting strategy of putting their highest rated player on fourth board.

TURKEY
1 GM IPATOV ALEXANDER 2630
2 GM SOLAK DRAGAN 2618
3 GM YILMAZ MUSTAFA 2577
4 GM ESEN BARIŞ 2565
5 GM CAN EMRE 2519

Turkey is the host country and on paper one of the weaker teams of the event. However Ipatov has show amazing results lately and it is possible they give a surprise or two.

NETHERLAND
1 GM GIRI ANISH 2732
2 GM VAN WELY LOEK 2678
3 GM TIVIAKOV SERGEI 2663
4 GM SOKOLOV IVAN 2648
5 GM L ' AMI ERWIN 2625

The Netherlands always fields a strong team, and they qualified thanks to their strong result in last year's Olympiad. Let's not forget that Sokolov just amazed everyone in the European Team Championship last week where he scored an over 2900 performance rating. Can he repeat the same feat?

UKRAINE
1 GM IVANCHUK VASSILY 2731
2 GM KOROBOV ANTON 2713
3 GM MOISEENKO ALEXANDER 2709
4 GM KRYVORUCHKO YURIY 2701
5 GM ARESHCHENKO ALEXANDER 2720

The absence of Ponomariov slightly weakens Ukraine, but with every player being over 2700 it is obvious that they are in strong contention for the top positions. Much will depend on Ivanchuk's stability on first board. They qualified thanks to last year's Olympiad.

RUSSIA
1 GM KRAMNIK VLADIMIR 2793
2 GM KARJAKIN SERGEY 2756
3 GM GRISCHUK ALEXANDER 2785
4 GM NEPOMNIACHTCHI IAN 2721
5 GM VITIUGOV NIKITA 2741

Russia is always a team to be feared, even if their performance in team tournaments lately has not been stellar. Ratings alone show that they are a monster squad and it's hard to see them not taking one of the top three places. They qualified in last year's Olympiad as well.

ARMENIA
1 GM ARONIAN LEVON 2801
2 GM MOVSESIAN SERGEI 2700
3 GM AKOPIAN VLADIMIR 2681
4 GM SARGISSIAN GABRIEL 2676
5 GM PETROSIAN TIGRAN 2660

Armenia is not as strong as Russia by rating, and they are only comparable to Ukraine, but they are the defending champions and somehow they do amazing in every team tournament. Will their chemistry prevail over Russia's powerhouse?

USA
1 GM HIKARU NAKAMURA 2786
2 GM GATA KAMSKY 2721
3 GM ALEX ONISCHUK 2672
4 GM RAY ROBSON 2613
5 GM VARUZHAN AKOBIAN 2625

America always has had a problem and that is the lack of a reliable fourth board. Gareev was unable to participate in the event due to passport issues which means that USA will be missing one of their top rated players and has to rely on Robson and Akobian to hold down the fort on the last board. If Nakamura is on fire and Onischuk can keep his solid style they could even win the tournament. USA crushed the American qualifier to make it to the event, eliminating Cuba on the way.

CHINA
1 GM CHAO LI 2679
2 GM LIREN DING 2711
3 GM YUE WANG 2725
4 GM XIANGZHI BU 2683
5 GM YANGYI YU 2668

The obvious absence here is Wang Hao, but despite this China's team is still quite strong. They are not lining up according to rating and it will be interesting to see how well Li Chao can do on board one. A successful result for him would give China excellent chances to medal. They are the Asian qualifier winners.

AZERBAIJAN
1 GM MAMEDOV RAUF 2647
2 GM SAFARLI ELTAJ 2653
3 GM MAMEDOV NIDJAD 2616
4 GM DURARBAYLI VASIF 2559
5 GM GUSEINOV GADIR 2607

Azerbaijan, the President's Nominee for the event, fields a pale team in comparison to the squad that won the European Team Championship last week. The absence of Gashimov, Radjabov and Mamedyarov and with young and unstable players on boards one and two it is unlikely that Azerbaijan scores very well in this event.

EGYPT
1 IM MOHAMED EZAT 2454
2 IM KHALED ABDEL RAZIK 2450
3 IM SHOKER SAMY AHMED 2500
4 GM BASSEM AMIN 2652
5 IM LABIB IBRAHIM HASAN 2411

As usual Egypt is the team that qualified from the African continent. They are missing a key player as Adly was unable to attend due to his military service. Bassem will have to pull miracles on board four for this team to have a chance at not finishing last.

Opening Ceremony

The opening ceremony featured some traditional dances

Also very importantly for the tournament itself it was the time to make the pairings. Each team sent a representative to choose a figurine that held their pairing number on the bottom.

Van Wely was the Netherlands' chosen one

Round 1

Round one came with very few surprises. A super match was featured at the very start as Kramnik and Aronian played board one of Russia vs. Armenia. However not a single board finished in a decisive result and the teams had to split the point.

Grischuk played a very aggressive game against Akopian but was unable to overcome his opponent's Berlin

Kramnik-Aronian was a wild affair in a Botvinnik system. However it ended when White saw nothing better than to give a perpetual.

The players came down to the press conference to analyze their game and to see what was going on in the remaining boards

Karjakin has a record for having amazing performances in team tournaments, even back when he played in Ukraine such as his gold medal in the 2004 Olympiad

Germany was able to squeak a win past Egypt as Shoker surprised Naiditsch with a win with black. However Meier and Baramidze's wins edged the score 2.5-1.5 in favor of the European team. Here is Baramidze game:

[Event "2013 WORLD CHESS TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP"] [Site "ANTALYA"] [Date "????.??.??"] [Round "1.1"] [White "Amin, Bassem"] [Black "Baramidze, David"] [Result "0-1"] [Annotator "Ramirez Alvarez,Alejandro"] [PlyCount "62"] 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. d4 exd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nxc6 bxc6 6. e5 Qe7 7. Qe2 Nd5 8. c4 Nb6 9. Nc3 Qe6 {The most popular line still.} (9... Bb7 $5 {Has gained some popularity since the famous Shirov-Kramnik game from a few years ago and thanks to the recommendation made by Larry Kauffman in his opening treaty.}) 10. Qe4 g6 11. Bd3 Bg7 12. f4 Ba6 $5 (12... O-O {is the common choice and far more popular than the move in the game.}) 13. b3 d5 14. cxd5 (14. Qf3 dxc4 15. Be2 {is interesting as Black is somewhat paralyzed since he cannot take on b3.} ) 14... cxd5 15. Nxd5 $5 {Bassem goes for the complications. It is not so clear if he should have done this considerating that his opponent might have prepared something specifically in this variation.} Nxd5 16. Qa4+ c6 $1 17. Bxa6 Bxe5 $1 {This is the point of the position. White has no choice but to take the bishop or he loses material instantly.} (17... O-O 18. O-O {simply leaves White up a pawn.}) 18. fxe5 (18. Kf2 Bc3 $1 {Is a crazy and inhuman move, but Black's combination of threats will eventually allow him to be ahead in material.} (18... Bxa1 $6 19. Re1 Qxe1+ 20. Kxe1 O-O {is just unclear.})) 18... Qxe5+ 19. Kf2 (19. Be2 $2 O-O $1 {And white cannot defend his rook on a1 and the pressure on the e-file at the same time. For example:} 20. Rb1 Nc3 $1 21. Qc4 Nxb1 {and it's all over.}) 19... Qf6+ 20. Kg3 Qc3+ 21. Kh4 {The king is on h4, but it is untouchable at the moment. The fourth rank is covered by the queen on a4 and the bishop on c1 can cover any check on the d8-h4 diagonal. } O-O $1 (21... Qxa1 $2 22. Qxc6+ $18) 22. Bh6 Ne7 $1 {This simple retreat puts unsolvable problems on White's position.} 23. Qf4 $2 (23. g4 $2 g5+ $1 24. Bxg5 Ng6+ 25. Kh5 Qh3+ $19) (23. g3 $1 {Giving the king the h3 square was the only chance.} Nf5+ 24. Kh3 Nxh6 $17 {and Black is only a little bit better. He has a safer king and an extra pawn but White is active and his pawn structure is certainly superior.}) 23... Nf5+ 24. Kg4 Rfe8 {any move bringing the rook into play wins.} 25. g3 Qa5 $6 (25... Re5 $1 {Inching closer to the king was more precise.}) 26. Bd3 $6 {This gives Black a free tempo in the attack as Baramidze finishes off his opponent in fantastic style.} (26. Bc4 Rad8 (26... Nxh6+ $1 27. Kh3 Nf5 $17) 27. Kh3 $11) 26... Rad8 $1 27. Bxf5 Rd4 $1 {This is the point. The queen is lost as it cannot take the suicide rook on d4.} 28. Rae1 (28. Qxd4 Qxf5+ 29. Kh4 Qh5#) 28... Qxf5+ 29. Kf3 Rxf4+ 30. Bxf4 Rxe1 31. Rxe1 g5 {A fantastic win that proved vital for Germany to come up ahead in this match.} 0-1

Meier, who somehow is a student in America but plays every European event, absolutely annihilated his opponent today in a mere 22 moves

Turkey lost to Azerbaijan as Nidjat Mamedov beat his opponent in a very dragged out position. Mamedov was simply better throughout the entire game.

Bu Xiangzhi's persistence gave his team the victory as his was the only decisive result in the Netherlands vs. China encounter. In yet another win with Black Bu was able to convert a passed pawn a gainst Tiviakov.

Kamsky's pawn sacrifice did not pay off for him and eventually Korobov was able to convert it and give Ukraine the win in the Ukraine vs. USA match.

Akobian is a very solid player, but America will need him to win when he is white. Also don't confuse him with Akopian who plays for Armenia.

Tomorrow's round will surely be very interesting. The official website is providing live commentary and interviews with the players as soon as they are finished with their games.

1.1 Germany
2½ - 1½
Egypt
1 Khenkin Igor 2612
½ : ½
Ezat Mohamed 2454
2 Meier Georg 2623
1 : 0
Abdel Razik Khaled 2450
3 Naiditsch Arkadij 2727
0 : 1
Shoker Samy 2500
4 Baramidze David 2614
1 : 0
Amin Bassem 2652
1.2 Turkey
1½ - 2½
Azerbaijan
1 Ipatov Alexander 2630
½ : ½
Mamedov Rauf 2647
2 Solak Dragan 2618
½ : ½
Safarli Eltaj 2653
3 Yilmaz Mustafa 2577
0 : 1
Mamedov Nidjat 2616
4 Esen Baris 2565
½ : ½
Durarbayli Vasif 2559
1.3 Netherlands
1½ - 2½
China
1 Giri Anish 2732
½ : ½
Ding Liren 2711
2 Van Wely Loek 2678
½ : ½
Wang Yue 2725
3 Tiviakov Sergei 2663
0 : 1
Bu Xiangzhi 2683
4 Sokolov Ivan 2625
½ : ½
Yu Yangyi 2668
1.4 Ukraine
2½ - 1½
United States of America
1 Ivanchuk Vassily 2731
½ : ½
Nakamura Hikaru 2786
2 Korobov Anton 2713
1 : 0
Kamsky Gata 2721
3 Moiseenko Alexander 2709
½ : ½
Onischuk Alexander 2672
4 Kryvoruchko Yuriy 2701
½ : ½
Akobian Varuzhan 2625
1.5 Russia
2 - 2
Armenia
1 Kramnik Vladimir 2793
½ : ½
Aronian Levon 2801
2 Karjakin Sergey 2756
½ : ½
Movsesian Sergei 2700
3 Grischuk Alexander 2785
½ : ½
Akopian Vladimir 2681
4 Nepomniachtchi Ian 2721
½ : ½
Sargissian Gabriel 2676

Replay today's games

Photos by Fatma Koc Ozturk

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 12 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs.


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