11th Dubai Open 2009 – a feast for the eyes

by ChessBase
5/8/2009 – Chess players look more or less the same, in Beijing or in Dortmund. But step out of the playing hall and the picture changes. The locations where chess events are held range from the boring to the visually stunning. Dubai does not belong to the former category. Our report WGM Yana Melnikova has lovingly portrayed the city, while not neglecting the participants, in this spectacular pictorial report.

ChessBase 17 - Mega package - Edition 2024 ChessBase 17 - Mega package - Edition 2024

It is the program of choice for anyone who loves the game and wants to know more about it. Start your personal success story with ChessBase and enjoy the game even more.


11th Dubai Open 2009

By WGM Yana Melnikova

The United Arab Emirates are located in the southeast of the Arabian Peninsula, and border with Qatar in the northwest, Oman in the east and Saudi Arabia Kingdom in the south. The country’s total area is 90,559 sq. km. (including islands). The coast of the Emirates is washed by waters of the Persian and Omansky Gulfs.

View Larger Map

Just 38 years ago a state called the United Arab Emirates did not exist. There were only separated Emirates, who lived in conflict with each other. The Emirates were united only in 1971, and a contrast between history and the present status will amaze anyone.

Yana Melnikova in Dubai, with the sky-scraper section in the background

Dubai is the second largest of the Emirates, it terms of size. It is located on the bank of the Persian Gulf and is the main tourist centre in the Near East. The city is divided into three main areas: Deira with old, historical buildings, Burj Dubai with a large collection of skyscrapers, and Jumeira, a coastal line.

Burj Dubai, the tallest building on a planet, is located in Dubai. The construction of Burj Dubai is planned to finish in August of 2009. The height of a tower reach 818 m, with a total of over 160 stories.

Burj Al Arab is a well-known hotel in Dubai, the world's largest hotel constructed on an artificial island.

The Burj Al Arab was designed in the form of the sail of an Arabian boat

Downtown Dubai

Deira, the historical part of the town

Street restaurants and bazar atmosphere in the older parts of Dubai

A costal amusement park, crawling with Disney people taking notes

Mosque Jumeira, a unique mosque, where non-Moslems are allowed to enter

A very interesting adventure in Dubai is worth trying – Desert Safari

4WD rovers are specially prepared for the thrilling drive in the sand dunes

The vehicle cross sand dunes, climb dune mountains, drive at a 45 degree angle

Public transport in Dubai is not developed. There is a bus system in the city, but local people hardly use it. Despite the unpopularity, the first-ever bus stops with air-conditioning are established in Dubai.

Where else in the world can you find a chess monument like this? This statue was unveiled by H.H. Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum to commemorate the opening of 27th chess Olympiad (1986)

Chess tournament

11th Dubai Open Chess Championship, also known as the Sheikh Rashed Bin Hamdan Al Maktoum Cup, was held from 25th April to 5th Mai 2009 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. 140 chess players from 29 countries, including 40 GM, competed for the main awards. That was a record number of participants for this tournament. Despite the global economic crisis, the prize fund of tournament was actually increased, compared to the previous year. The event was a nine-round Swiss.

Our reporter in front of the chess and cultural club where the event was held

In the end three players scored seven points: Dmitry Bocharov from Russia, Tigran Kotanjian and Anastasian Ashot, both from Armenia. The tiebreak system put Kotanjian on top, Bocharov won silver and Anastasian bronze. Eight players finished half a point behind these three leaders, sharing 4-11 places.

Top final standings

Rk. Title Name FED Rtg Pts.
1 GM Kotanjian Tigran ARM 2552 7.0
2 GM Bocharov Dmitry RUS 2606 7.0
3 GM Anastasian Ashot ARM 2554 7.0
4 GM Guseinov Gadir AZE 2659 6.5
5 GM Malakhatko Vadim BEL 2618 6.5
6 IM Sundararajan Kidambi IND 2487 6.5
7 GM Maletin Pavel RUS 2559 6.5
8 GM Neverov Valeriy UKR 2552 6.5
9 GM Mchedlishvili Mikheil GEO 2586 6.5
10 GM Volkov Sergey RUS 2594 6.5
11 GM Miezis Normunds LAT 2579 6.5
12 GM Ghaem Maghami Ehsan IRI 2593 6.0
13 GM Arun Prasad S IND 2552 6.0
14 GM Pantsulaia Levan GEO 2581 6.0
15 GM Jankovic Alojzije CRO 2540 6.0
16 GM Hossain Enamul BAN 2531 6.0
17 GM Melkumyan Hrant ARM 2528 6.0
18 GM Ibrahimov Rasul AZE 2537 6.0
19 GM Geetha Narayanan Gopal   IND 2572 6.0
20 GM Safarli Eltaj AZE 2599 6.0
21 GM Fedorov Alexei BLR 2611 6.0
22 GM Gasanov Eldar UKR 2551 6.0
23 GM Perunovic Milos SRB 2580 6.0
24 GM Milanovic Danilo SRB 2564 6.0
25 FM Moosavian S Hamed IRI 2395 6.0
26 GM Iordachescu Viorel MDA 2608 6.0

The winner: GM Tigran Kotanjian, ARM, 2552, 7.0 points

2nd on tiebreak: GM Dmitry Bocharov, RUS, 2606, 7.0 points

3rd: GM Ashot Anastasian, ARM, 2554, 7.0 points

4th: GM Gadir Guseinov, AZE, 2659, 6.5 points

5th: GM Vadim Malakhatko, BEL, 2618, 6.5 points

6th: IM Kidambi Sundararajan, IND, 2487, 6.5 points

7th: GM Pavel Maletin, RUS, 2559, 6.5 points

10th place for GM Sergey Volkov, RUS, 2594, 6.5 points

13th: GM Arun Prasad, IND, 2552, 6.0 points

14th: GM Levan Pantsulaia, GEO, 2581, 6.0 points

18th: GM Rasul Ibrahimov, AZE, 2537, 6.0 points

27th: GM Axel Bachmann, PAR, 2555, 5.5 points

30th: GM Pavel Kotsur, KAZ, 2589, 5.5 points

There was also a special women prize, which was shared by WGM Zeinab Mamedjarova (Azerbajan), WIM Atousa Pourkashiyan (IRI), IM Nino Gurieli (Georgia).

35th: WGM Zeinab Mamedjarova, AZE, 2316, 5.5 points

36th: WIM Atousa Pourkashiyan, IRI, 2273, 5.5 points

37th: IM Nino Gurieli, GEO, 2325, 5.5 points

A section of the playing venue

The ceremonial start of a key game in round one

Youngsters participating in the Dubai

One of the UAE players (can anyone identify her?)

Arbiters in the lady's section


You can download the free PGN reader ChessBase Light to read, replay and analyse the PGN games. CBLight also gives you instant access to the Playchess server, where you can play, watch major tournaments, attend lectures and join in many other activities.

Reports about chess: tournaments, championships, portraits, interviews, World Championships, product launches and more.


Rules for reader comments


Not registered yet? Register