3.5:0.5 wipe-out by the Swiss

9/10/2002 – Viktor Kortschnoj easily outplayed Arkadi Naiditsch, 56 years his junior, while Yannick Pelletier turned a very precarious position into a stunning victory with his opponent's rook hopelessly trapped on a8. So after the first leg of the match the Germans return from Switzerland with a meagre 0.5 points and have their work cut out for them next weekend in Berlin. You will find an illustrated report here.

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Switzerland vs Germany

The second day of the first session brough a clean wipe-out of the German team by the Swiss squad. Viktor Kortschnoj, who had been very close to victory on the previous day, allowing Lutz to escape only because of the "stupid opposite-coloured bishops", this time provided no escape for his second-round opponent Arkadi Naiditsch. Young Arkadi, who is 56 years Kortschnoj's junior, missed the start of the game, believing it was schedule for 2 p.m. as on the previous day. Ten minutes into the game, which started at one, he had not yet turned up. We found him preparing in his room! A bit disconcerted by the sudden and rushed start he never really found into the game with Victor the Terrible.

The other encounter was even more dramatic. Top German GM Christopher Lutz started off in good style, gaining a clear advantage with the white pieces and looking set for a clean technical victory. But then Yannick Pelletier started to play imaginative, daring chess. With the audience following the superb commentary of GM Lucas Brunner, Yannik slowly turned the expected loss into a even position. Then, finding all the best and most complex moves (ask Fritz, as we all did in Zurich) he built up an attack that had everyone in raptures. Just take a look at the final position:

With his last move, Nc6-b7, Black has completely trapped the white rook and will now pick it up with Bxb7 Rxa7 Nx87. Lutz had no alternative but to resign.

So the first leg of the match ended with a depressing 3.5:0.5 score for the German players, who have their work cut out for them next weekend in Berlin (see schedule below). All games are broadcast live with GM commentary on the Playchess server.


Picture gallery


Zurich is a modern city with history and charm


... with houses, restaurants and walkways on the banks of the river


... and the lake, which is populated by beautiful swans


... and very friendly pigeons, pestering visitors for morsels


... not to forget the famous staue of Ganymed, who had his own problems with birds


The most famous street is the Bahnhof-Strasse, one of the most expensive in the world


The polo shirt above costs 975 Swiss Francs, which translates to $655


And how about a plain blue shirt for over $400 (598 Swiss Francs).


The games of day two begin, with a Swiss league round in the same hall


The two Swiss players Viktor Kortschnoj

and 26-year-old Yannick Pelletier


A key moment in the game Christopher Lutz vs Yannick Pelletier


Kortschnoi and Lucas Brunner take part in the post-game analysis


Pelletier, Petra Kortschnoj, Sponsor Dr William Wirt and Viktor Kortschnoi at the reception after the end of the weekend in Zurich.

The second round will be played in Berlin on the next weekend. Venue: Casino Berlin, Alexanderplatz, 37th storey. Times: Saturday Sept 14th 2002, 14.00 MET, Sunday Sept. 15th 2002, 13.00 MET. All games will be broadcast live on the Fritz7 Playchess server.

There will also be a national tournament Switzerland vs Germany for all players from these two countries. This will be held on the Playchess server from September 9 to 13. Great prizes! Registry by email at deutschschweizerschachwoche@schach.de.

 


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