The small town of Agen, host of the French Championships 2016, has about 35,000 inhabitants, lies between the big cities of Bordeaux and Toulouse.
The first four rounds saw a number of surprises. One of them is the strong start of Yannick Gozzoli. With a rating of 2573 Gozzoli did not belong to the favorites but with two wins and two draws he is sole leader after four rounds. Even more surprising is the result of Jean-Francois Jolly, the only International Master in the field, and with an Elo of 2371 much lower rated than his nine 2500+ colleagues.
After a first round draw with Black against Tigran Gharamian Jolly defeated Christian Bauer in round two in a game that was not free of errors but exciting to watch:
Jean-Francois Jolly (left) at the start of his game against Christian Bauer
After a loss against Romain Edouard in round three Jolly - maybe warned or inspired by the many tactical oversights in his game against Bauer - defeated Matthieu Cornette in round four with a back rank combination:
|1||GM||Yannick Gozzoli||½||½||1||1||3.0 / 4|
|2||IM||Jean Francois Jolly||1||1||½||0||2.5 / 4||5.75|
|3||GM||Christian Bauer||½||0||1||1||2.5 / 4||3.50|
|4||GM||Matthieu Cornette||0||½||1||1||2.5 / 4||3.50|
|5||GM||Laurent Fressinet||½||½||½||½||2.0 / 4||4.50|
|6||GM||Sebastien Maze||0||½||½||1||2.0 / 4||2.25|
|7||GM||Tigran Gharamian||0||½||½||½||1.5 / 4||2.50|
|8||GM||Adrien Demuth||0||0||½||1||1.5 / 4||2.00|
|9||GM||Romain Edouard||1||0||0||1.0 / 3|
|10||GM||Sebastien Feller||0||0||½||0.5 / 3|
Apart from the top events there are a number of open tournaments...
... for young...
... and old.
Christian Bauer and Adrien Demuth
Adrien Demuth (left) at the start of his game against Romain Edouard
Romain Edouard and Matthieu Cornette
Round 1: Tigran Gharamian and Jean-Francois Jolly at the start of their game
Photos: Tournament page
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