Chess Classic: Grischuk wins FiNet Chess 960 Open

8/1/2009 – In Chess960 the pieces are shuffled before the start of each game – to eliminate all opening preparation. But does that render top GMs helpless? It does not. For a long stretch Gata Kamsky, was leading. He lost to former world champion Rustam Kasimdzhanov in the final round, so that the winner in the end was top seed Alexander Grischuk. Report with lovely pictures by Christian Bossert.

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Chess Classic Mainz 2009

The 2009 Chess Classic is taking place from July 27 to August 2 in the Rheingoldhalle of the Congress Centre, Hilton Hotel in Mainz, Germany. The event includes tournaments and Opens in traditional and Random Chess, with stars like the current World Champion Vishy Anand, Levon Aronian of Armenia, strong Russian junior GM Ian Nepomniachtchi and top German GM Arkadij Naiditsch.

FInET Open – going once, going twice, going three times, Grischuk!

Report by Eric van Reem

The man with the cap was the sole leader after ten nerve-breaking rounds in the 8. FiNet Chess960 Open, but in the final round, Gata Kamsky lost his only game against former world champion Rustam Kazimdzhanov. This loss paved the way for Alexander Grischuk, who won the massive Ordix Open twice, to clinch home his third Mainz Open title. He kept his cool in the last round against German ace Rainer Buhmann and won the 8. Edition of the FiNet Chess960 Open with 9.5 points.


The sole winner, with 9.5/11 points: Alexander Grischuk of Russia

This last minute victory avoided a total American Chess960 domination in Mainz. Hikaru Nakamura won the Chess960 World Championship, and the American program Rybka won the Livingston Chess960 computer tournament for the third time in a row. The late Bobby Fischer, the inventor of this fascination chess variant that gets more and more attention on all levels, would have smiled in heaven.


Gata Kamsky at the start of his game against Arkadij Naiditsch

Despite his tremendous victory, Grischuk was not too happy with the way he played in the Chess960 Open. “I had a lost position in three games”. But Grischuk, winner of the online Chess960 qualification tournament on the Internet Chess Club, showed that he is a tough player to beat. “And you need a little luck as well to win an Open like this”, the Russian smiled. He added: “My main goal is to win both the FiNet and the Ordix Open in one year”. Maybe he can be the first player in Chess Classic history to reach this unearthly goal. He will give it a shot tomorrow!


The man in the cap faltered in the final round against Rustam Kazimdzhanov

Kamsky, who scored nine points in the end, was downhearted after his terrible loss in the final round. He was in the lead from the word go and losing the final game is an experience that even a hard-boiled chess professional like Kamsky will not easily forget. He just needed a draw to win the tournament. His opponent Kasimdzhanov showed his ambitions and all his class in his last game against the American. In the end he shared second place with Kamsky.


GM Sergei Movsesian, 2716, SVK, 8.5/11, sixth vs GM Georg Meier, 2658 8.5/11, ninth


GM Navara,David 2709, CZE, finished 23rd, with 7.5/11 points


Peter Heine Nielsen, Denmark, finished 35th with 7.0/11


Draw? Hectic offer at the end of an explosive game

From a German point of view, the tournament was very successful. Arkadi Naiditsch and Georg Meier scored 8.5 points, but the big German surprise was Rainer Buhmann, who played a fantastic tournament. He even had a chance to win the event, but he lost against Grischuk in the last round. He played an excellent Chess960 game, had a pawn up and the upper hand, but the Russian top player showed his perseverance, power and experience. Buhmann was very disappointed after the game: “I might never get such a good occasion to win the FiNet anymore”. Symbolically, in the end he landed on 13th place…


Rainer Buhmann playing (and beating) Gabriel Sargisian

The best female player in the FiNet was Kateryna Lahno with eight points, Irina Gaponenko and Marie Rachel Sebag scored 7.5 points. Vlastimil Hort was the best senior player.


WIM Anita Gara, 2381, Hungary, (here facing GM Robert Fontaine) finished with 6.5/11


World-class glare: WIM Arianne Caoili, 2199, from Australia finished at 6.0/11

A great FiNet Chess960 Open came to an end today. Never before has the tournament attracted more top level participants. We counted 106 players with an international title! The top ten had an Elo average of 2718, the total average of all 263 players in the FiNet Chess960 Open was 2170.


Best senior Vlastimil Hort playing against IM Fred Berend, 2354, of Luxemburg


Young and old in the FiNet Chess960 Open


Sponsor and organiser: Peter Kunath of FiNet and Hans-Walter Schmitt of Chess Tigers

The end of the FiNet Open marked the end of the Chess960 events this week in Mainz. The GRENKELEASING Rapid World Championship started on Friday, on Saturday the massive Ordix Open with around 700 players starts at 12.30.


Christian Bossert, who provided (most of) the wonderful pictures on this page

Final standings (7.0 points or higher)

# Player Rtng Nat + = Pts T1 T2
1. GM Grischuk,Alexander 2733 RUS 8 3 0 9.5 59.0 66.0
2. GM Kamsky,Gata 2717 USA 8 2 1 9.0 61.0 71.5
3. GM Kasimdzhanov,Rustam 2685 UZB 8 2 1 9.0 52.5 63.0
4. GM Malakhov,Vladimir 2707 RUS 7 3 1 8.5 56.5 71.0
5. GM Mamedyarov,Shakhriyar 2717 AZE 8 1 2 8.5 56.5 69.0
6. GM Movsesian,Sergei 2716 SVK 7 3 1 8.5 55.5 69.5
7. GM Naiditsch,Arkadij 2697 8 1 2 8.5 55.5 68.0
8. GM Bacrot,Etienne 2721 FRA 8 1 2 8.5 51.0 64.0
9. GM Meier,Georg 2658 8 1 2 8.5 51.0 62.0
10. GM Grigoriants,Sergey 2580 RUS 6 4 1 8.0 55.5 69.0
11. GM Sargissian,Gabriel 2683 ARM 7 2 2 8.0 53.5 64.5
12. GM Landa,Konstantin 2655 RUS 7 2 2 8.0 53.5 64.0
13. GM Buhmann ,Rainer 2603 8 0 3 8.0 53.0 66.5
14. GM Sokolov,Ivan 2655 BIH 8 0 3 8.0 52.0 65.0
15. GM Fridman,Daniel 2665 6 4 1 8.0 52.0 63.0
16. GM Stevic,Hrvoje 2624 CRO 8 0 3 8.0 51.0 61.5
17. GM Moiseenko,Alexander 2682 UKR 6 4 1 8.0 50.5 64.0
18. GM Zvjaginsev,Vadim 2635 RUS 7 2 2 8.0 50.5 60.0
19. GM Lahno,Kateryna 2481 UKR 7 2 2 8.0 49.5 60.5
20. GM Najer,Evgeniy 2663 RUS 8 0 3 8.0 49.0 60.0
21. GM Sasikiran,Krishnan 2669 IND 7 2 2 8.0 47.5 60.5
22. GM Glek,Igor 2530 8 0 3 8.0 47.0 61.0
23. GM Navara,David 2709 CZE 6 3 2 7.5 52.0 68.0
24. GM Almasi,Zoltan 2691 HUN 6 3 2 7.5 50.5 64.0
25. GM Tregubov,Pavel 2663 RUS 6 3 2 7.5 50.5 63.0
26. GM Bologan,Viktor 2689 MDA 7 1 3 7.5 50.0 62.5
27. GM Gashimov,Vugar 2740 AZE 7 1 3 7.5 48.5 62.5
28. GM Gofshtein,Leonid 2540 ISR 7 1 3 7.5 47.0 59.5
29. GM Azarov,Sergei 2630 BLR 6 3 2 7.5 46.0 58.5
30. GM Cvitan,Ognjen 2521 CRO 7 1 3 7.5 46.0 58.0
31. GM Fontaine,Robert 2540 FRA 7 1 3 7.5 44.5 58.5
32. GM Gyimesi,Zoltan 2595 HUN 7 1 3 7.5 44.5 57.0
33. FM Schulz,Karsten 2384 7 1 3 7.5 41.5 55.0
34. GM Akopian,Vladimir 2712 ARM 6 2 3 7.0 50.0 64.5
35. GM Nielsen,Peter-Heine 2680 DEN 7 0 4 7.0 48.0 65.5
36. GM Sokolov,Andrei 2570 FRA 6 2 3 7.0 47.5 62.5
37. GM Lalic,Bogdan 2517 CRO 5 4 2 7.0 47.0 62.0
38. GM Bischoff,Klaus 2551 5 4 2 7.0 47.0 59.5
39. IM Gaponenko,Inna 2444 UKR 6 2 3 7.0 46.5 60.5
40. GM Brkic,Ante 2544 CRO 6 2 3 7.0 46.0 60.5
41. IM Schneider,Ilja 2508 6 2 3 7.0 46.0 59.0
42. IM Ekström,Roland 2486 SUI 6 2 3 7.0 45.5 61.0
43. WGM Sebag,Marie Rachel 2531 FRA 5 4 2 7.0 45.5 59.0
44. GM Potkin,Vladimir 2619 RUS 7 0 4 7.0 45.0 61.0
45. IM Heimann,Andreas 2435 6 2 3 7.0 45.0 60.0
46. GM Galdunts ,Sergey 2464 ARM 7 0 4 7.0 45.0 59.5
47. GM Siebrecht,Sebastian 2458 7 0 4 7.0 44.0 59.0
48. IM Rigo,Janos 2325 HUN 6 2 3 7.0 43.5 58.5
49. IM Milov,Leonid 2562 7 0 4 7.0 43.0 58.5
50. GM Vaganjan,Rafael 2568 ARM 7 0 4 7.0 43.0 56.5
51. IM Wippermann,Till 2419 7 0 4 7.0 43.0 52.5
52. IM Gasthofer,Alexander 2458 6 2 3 7.0 42.5 56.5
53. IM Csiszar,Csaba 2450 HUN 7 0 4 7.0 42.0 56.0
54. IM Rau,Hannes 2470 7 0 4 7.0 42.0 54.5
55. IM Meszaros,Tamas 2434 HUN 7 0 4 7.0 42.0 51.0
56. FM Schwekendiek,Ulrich 2275 7 0 4 7.0 41.0 56.0
57. FM Andersen,Mads 2336 DEN 7 0 4 7.0 41.0 54.5
58. Dann,Matthias 2298 6 2 3 7.0 40.5 54.0
59. FM Gheng,Josef 2338 6 2 3 7.0 40.5 52.5
60. FM Schnepp,Gunnar 2292 6 2 3 7.0 40.0 54.5
61. IM Gashimov,Sarkhan 2351 AZE 7 0 4 7.0 39.0 50.0

Schedule of remaining events

GRENKELEASING Rapid World Championship – July 31 to August 2nd, 2009

Rapid Chess, 20min/game + 5s/move. Course of events: Fri, 31 July: first rounds 1, 2 and 3; Sat, 1 Aug.: second rounds 4, 5 and 6, possible tiebreak; Sun, 2 Aug: four-game matches, big and small final, possible tiebreak, award ceremony. Start time of rounds: 18:30h, 19:30h, 20:30h, final additionally: 21:30h. Participants:

Player Nation Title
Rating
WRnk
Viswanathan Anand India  GM
2783
2
Levon Aronian Armenia  GM
2754
6
Arkadij Naiditsch Germany  GM
2710
26
Ian Nepomniachtchi Russia  GM
2628
113

Full details

16th ORDIX Open – August 1-2, 2009

Eleven rounds Rapid Chess Open, 20min/game + 5s/move. Registration until Sat 1 Aug, 11:30h. Sat 1 August: rounds 1-5; Sun 2 August: rounds 6-11. Start of rounds: Sat 12:00h, Sun 10:00h. Award ceremony Sun 17:30h. Details.


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