Favorites dominate first round of US Championship

by André Schulz
4/15/2016 – With Fabiano Caruana, Hikaru Nakamura and Wesley So three of the world's best player take part in the US Championship 2016. They all started well into the tournament and showed their class by beating their first round opponents in textbook fashion. In the women's tournament the favorites Krush and Zatonskih started less convincingly.

ChessBase 15 - Mega package ChessBase 15 - Mega package

Find the right combination! ChessBase 15 program + new Mega Database 2020 with 8 million games and more than 80,000 master analyses. Plus ChessBase Magazine (DVD + magazine) and CB Premium membership for 1 year!

More...

Follow the games live on playchess

The first round of the US Championship 2016 was played 14th April. The overall prize-fund of about 300,000 USD and the prestige of the tournament attracted a very strong field to St. Louis, where the Chess Club and Scholastic Center supported by sponsor Rex Sinquefield once against hosts the event.

Nominally, the US Championship 2016, is the strongest of all time. The top favorites are Fabiano Caruana, Hikaru Nakamura and Wesley So, but players such as Ray Robson or Sam Shankland or the young talents Akshat Chandra or Jefferey Xiong are always good for a surprise.

But in the first round the favorites showed why they are the favorites. Varuzhan Akobian had to play with Black against Fabiano Caruana and tried arather rare line of the Scandinavian perhaps hoping to bring Caruana out of book. But Caruana showed his opponent why this line is not often played by the top opponents Caruana usually plays against. Black did not get any counterplay and lost without much of a fight.

Caruana-Akobian

 

Hikaru Nakamura answered Lenderman's attempt to play a Semi-Slav by transposing to a gambit line of the Catalan. In this line Nakamura gave up material but had a lot of pressure - too much for Lenderman who soon collapsed.

Nakamura-Lenderman

 

 

 

Wesley So followed the advice of Pavel Eljanov and quickly and convincingly demolished Gata Kamsky's Breyer Defense of the Ruy Lopez by sacrificing a knight on f5.

So-Kamsky

 

Wesley So

Defending champion Hikaru Nakamura is interviewed

Round 1- results

Br. Tit Name Coun ELO Result Title Name Coun ELO
1 GM Fabiano Caruana
 
2794 1 - 0 GM Varuzhan Akobian
 
2610
2 GM Hikaru Nakamura
 
2790 1 - 0 GM Aleksandr Lenderman
 
2623
3 GM Wesley So
 
2773 1 - 0 GM Gata Kamsky
 
2667
4 GM Samuel L Shankland
 
2648 1 - 0 IM Akshat Chandra
 
2501
5 GM Alexander Onischuk
 
2664 ½ - ½ GM Jeffery Xiong
 
2588
6 GM Alexander Shabalov
 
2520 0 - 1 GM Ray Robson
 
2663

Games of round 1

 

 

Standings

 

Women's tournament

Top favorites in the US Women's Championship are Anna Zatonskih and Irina Krush. But in the first round both had to concede a draw   with Black.

Round 1 - results

Br. Tit Name Coun ELO Result Title Name Coun ELO
1 IM Nazi Paikidze
 
2346 ½ - ½ IM Anna Zatonskih
 
2469
2 WGM Katerina Nemcova
 
2367 ½ - ½ GM Irina Krush
 
2458
3 WGM Tatev Abrahamyan
 
2324 1 - 0 WIM Agata Bykovtsev
 
2176
4 WGM Sabina Francesca Foisor
 
2258 ½ - ½ FM Alisa Melekhina
 
2205
5 WFM Jennifer R Yu
 
2102 ½ - ½ WIM Ashritha Eswaran
 
2149
6   Carissa Yip
 
2109 1 - 0 FM Akshita Gorti
 
2242

Round 1 - Games

 

Standings

Impressions

The Chess Hall of Fame

Without Rex Sinquefield none of this would happen

Fabiano Caruana plays...

... against his manager Lawrence Trent

The ladies share pictures and news

 

Pictures: Tournament page (Lennart Ootes)

Tournament page...



André Schulz started working for ChessBase in 1991 and is an editor of ChessBase News.

Discuss

Rules for reader comments

 
 

Not registered yet? Register