Areshchenko wins the Ukraine Championship

by ChessBase
9/5/2005 – The 74th Ukrainian Championship was won by 19-year-old Alexander Areshchenko (2625) from Kramatorsk, who narrowly defeated his 20-year-old clubmate Zahar Efimenko (2643 – would you believe the ratings on these Ukrainian kids!). We bring you all the games and results, plus a big illustrated report by Olena Boytsun.

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74th Ukraine Chess Championship

Aug. 24 – Sept. 2nd 2005

Alexander Areshchenko wins the Ukraine Championship

Report by Olena Boytsun

The 74th Ukrainian Chess Championship was held from the 24th of August till the 2nd of September 2005 in Rivne. The event was a knock-out tournament with 18 GMs playing (out of 32 participants). The main Ukrainian chess players Ponomariov and Ivantschuk as well as the Ukraine Champion 2004 Andrej Volokitin didn't participate. The prize fund was 70,000 Hrivniys (approximately US $14,000).

Alexander Areshchenko in A.V. Momot Chess Club in
(photo provided by Alexander Martynkov)

The winner was 19-year old Alexander Areshchenko (2625) from Kramatorsk. Alexander defeated Zahar Efimenko (2643) in the final match, a 20-year-old colleague from the same chess club named after A. V. Momot in Kramatorsk. The fight was really tough. The main match ended with draw (1:1). For the tie-break a two-game match was played, with time controls of 15 min + 10s. Result: 1:1. The first blitz game (5 min + 5s) was a draw. Only the next win in the blitz match brought Areshchenko the title.

The third place was taken by Vladislav Borovikov (2595), after winning his match against Valerij Neverov (2572).

Alexander Areshchenko (2625) lives in Kramatorsk and studies there in the famous chess school sponsored by the enterprise "Danko". His best results so far were the recent win at the category X "Grundfos Young Masters", first place in the "A.V. Momot's Memorial" in Kramatorsk in 2004, and the win of the World Championship among boys under 14 years in 2000. Alexander is a charming young man, with a soft smile. However, his friends call him "the Monster", because of his agressive chess style.

The official photo of the Ukraine Champion 2005
Alexander Areshchenko (photo by Alexander Martynkov)

Alexander ("/portals/all/_for_legal_reasons.jpg") Areshchenko during the game

Alexander Areshchenko and Zahar Efimenko in
Kramatorsk (photo sent by Alexander Martynkov)

Zahar Efimenko (2643) is 20 years old. Originally from the Donetsk Region, at the age of three Zahar moved with his family to to Uzhgorod in western Ukraine, where he started to show good results in chess. The talented young player got an invitation to study chess in Kramatorsk and went back to his native region. Efimenko is a student of the Law Faculty in a Kramatorsk Institute. 2005 was a good year for his chess carrier so far: the fresh second place in Montreal International Tournament (XII cat), the first place in the German Bundesliga (with the club "/portals/all/_for_legal_reasons.jpg"), the first place in the rapid "IX A.V.Momot's Memorial" in Kramatorsk, the first in Masters (Gibraltar-2005). In 1999 Efimenko was the World Youth Champion among boys under 14.

Both Areshchenko and Efimenko have qualified to the World Championship 2006 based on the results of the European championship 2005 in Warsaw.

GM Vladyslav Borovikov (2595) became the 3rd in the Ukraine Championship 2005

Vladyslav lives in Dnipropetrovsk. He is not only an active chess player, but also a successful chess trainer. Borovikov used to be the trainer of the young prodigy Sergey Karjakin, and worked with him regularly for a couple of years.

It was the first time that the official championship was held in Rivne. One of the core persons to bring chess to the city was Volodimir Kovalchuk, the new President of the Rivne Region Chess Federation. Volodimir became the President on the wave of the "/portals/all/_for_legal_reasons.jpg" in the Winter of 2005, and has already showed himself as a successful chess manager.

The youngest president of chess federation in the history
of Ukraine: 23-year old Volodimir Kovalchuk

Volodimir is a specialized economist and works as the director of a credit department of one of the banks in Rivne. He is an avid chess player and has participated in the Ukraine Championship as the representative of the Rivne Region. Being economist myself, I couldn't resist asking Kovalchuk his opinion on the future of chess management. "/portals/all/_for_legal_reasons.jpg" he says, "is passion. When I started to take a deep look into chess situation in my region, I saw that there was actually no situation at all! No chess club, no chess schools, no chessboards, nothing. Now, after half a year, we are staging a prestigious event. We bought modern equipment, chessboards, and literature. We are bidding to host the Ukraine Youth Championships, and we are planning to stage international events. We will work hard".

There are also a lot of other people who helped with the organization of the Ukraine Championship. A lot of young chess fans came every day to the Rivne Academic Musical Theater. Some of them assisted gathering moves from boards to create the database of the games and show them on the screen to spectators in the playing hall.

One of the assistants, enjoying an ice-cream during the games

As you can see, this young man from Rivne loves not only chess,
but also Julia Timoshenko, the Prime Minister of Ukraine.

Zahar Efimenko, Olena Boytsun, Mikhail Brodskij discussing
chess development in Ukraine

Vladimir Baklan from Kiev (2584)

Mikhail Brodskij (2554) is also a trainer of Zahar Efimenko and Katerina Lahno

Dmitrij Kononenko (2430) from Dnipropetrovsk

I was really pleased to see that so many players from my native Dnipropetrovsk (4 players out of 32) participated in this year's championship. One even "survived" to the semi-final games. The main arbiter was from Dnipropetrovsk as well, international arbiter Vladimir Gergel. I think I have earned the right to put into the report one photo of my native city.

The view on the Monastirskiy Island in Dnipropetrovsk

Back to Rivne – the Academic Musical Theater, where the games were played

The monument near the Theater

A big billboard in the center of Rivne announcing the 74th Ukraine Championship

In Rivne there are a lot of interesting monuments

Former pupils of the A.V.Momot Chess Club: Oleg Ivanov, Zahar Efimenko, Eduard Andreev, Ruslan Ponomariov, Sergey Karjakin, Viktor Korchnoi, Natalia Zdebskaja, Kateryna Lahno, Viktor Dmitrenko, Yuriy Kuzubov, Anna Zatonskih, Tatiana Kononenko. The majority of these players are already Grandmasters.

Current pupils of the club (Kramatorsk, April 16, 2005). Left to right: GM Alexander Areshchenko (2625), WGM Tatiana Kononenko (2442), GM Zahar Efimenko (2643), WGM Natalia Zdebskaja (2390), GM Yuriy Kuzubov (2535)


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