Gaziantep: Gunina overtakes Pähtz, wins European Women's Blitz

3/19/2012 – She already won the title in the classical time controls, now Russian IM Valentina Gunina added the Blitz title to it. In the final round she was able to defeat former women's world champion Antoaneta Stefanov 2-0 and overtake the leading Elisabeth Pähtz. The German IM will remain in Turkey, since she has signed a contract to train young talents. Big pictorial report.

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European Women's Blitz Championship

After winning the European Women's Championship in classical chess, Russian IM Valentina Gunina has gone on to win the European Women's Blitz Championship as well. In the final round she managed to beat former Women's World Champion Antoaneta Stefanova 2:0, and this victory gave her first place. Elisabeth Pähtz, who was leading before the last round, lost to Nadezda Kosintseva 1.5:0.5 and finished with the silver medal. Nana Dzagnidze placed third.


The winner, Valentina Gunina, during a blitz game


Elli in action: the German IM (right) scored 2-0 in round five against Antoaneta Stefanova


Yes she does – she sits on her legs during blitz games!


The prize winners: Elisabeth Pähtz, Silver, Valentina Gunina, Gold, and Nana Dzagnidze, Bronze.


Tatiana Kosintseva receiving her check (from TCF President Ali Nihat Yazici) for
winning the European Women's Rapid Chess Championship on Friday


GM Nana Dzagnidze of Georgia receiving her trophy for the third place in Blitz


Alexandra Kosteniuk receiving her check for Silver in the European Women's Rapid

Note that the prize sums on the checks are given with the European decimal point, which is a comma, while the separators are periods. So 1.500,00 € is equivalent to 1,500.00 € as written in most of the rest of the world.

Top final standings (after twenty rounds)

#
Sd
Ti.
Name
Rtng
FED
Points
Perf
BH1.
BH2.
wins
1
7
IM
Gunina Valentina
2511
RUS
15
2601
213
214
15
2
11
IM
Paehtz Elisabeth
2459
GER
14½
2652
230
237
13
3
2
GM
Dzagnidze Nana
2559
GEO
13½
2612
228
236
10
4
5
GM
Stefanova Antoaneta
2531
BUL
13½
2607
226
233
11
5
1
GM
Muzychuk Anna
2583
SLO
13
2586
229½
238
10
6
20
GM
Zhukova Natalia
2435
UKR
12½
2540
229
239
11
7
6
GM
Kosintseva Tatiana
2513
RUS
12½
2539
221½
230
11
8
4
GM
Kosintseva Nadezhda
2535
RUS
12½
2512
213½
221
11
9
3
GM
Lahno Kateryna
2546
UKR
12
2512
196½
204
11
10
13
IM
Ushenina Anna
2458
UKR
12
2502
235
245
9
11
40
WIM
Bezgodova Svetlana
2109
RUS
12
2439
195
201
10
12
15
GM
Kosteniuk Alexandra
2448
RUS
11½
2479
214
221
10
13
8
IM
Khotenashvili Bela
2490
GEO
11½
2468
196½
205
8
14
33
IM
Gvetadze Sofio
2334
GEO
11
2473
198½
206
8
15
35
WGM
Ozturk Kubra
2314
TUR
10½
2447
196
203
9
16
21
IM
Bodnaruk Anastasia
2412
RUS
10½
2436
186
192
9
17
23
WGM
Girya Olga
2406
RUS
10½
2412
181
187
9
18
14
WGM
Pogonina Natalija
2449
RUS
10½
2409
184
192
9
19
18
GM
Hoang Than Trang
2438
HUN
10½
2397
184
190
8
20
22
IM
Paikidze Nazi
2406
GEO
10½
2395
204
213
9
21
17
IM
Khurtsidze Nino
2447
GEO
10
2436
196
202
9
22
26
WGM
Kashlinskaya Alina
2377
RUS
10
2429
211
212
10
23
12
IM
Mkrtchian Lilit
2458
ARM
10
2410
188
194
9
24
19
WGM
Batsiashvili Nino
2438
GEO
10
2329
170
176
10


Get them in pink! Kateryna Lahno with her new spectacles


Still looking for vowels: IM Lilit Mkrtchian of Armenia


Former women's world champion Alexandra Kosteniuk


Sister act: Tatiana and Nadezhda Kosintseva, together weighing in at 5048 Elo


Pals: Nadezhda, Alexandra, Almira and Tatiana


World number four female player: IM Anna Muzychuk


Former Women's World Champion GM Antoaneta Stefanova of Bulgaria


WGM Betul Cemre Yildiz, 22, Turkish women's champion from 2001 through 2006


The other Turkish talent: WGM Kübra Özturk, who scored 10.5/20 in the blitz


Double medal winner Elisabeth Pähtz, here with TCF President
Yazici, will soon be training the Turkish women's team

Quick interview with Elisabeth Pähtz by Axel Eger

How did the contact with the Turkish Chess Federation come about?

I spoke to the President of the TCF, Ali Nihat Yazici, during the European Team Championship in November in Porto Carras. When I told him I enjoyed working with children he picked up his ears...

...and made you the offer. What will be your duties?

My main job is as a trainer. For instance I am to look after the 13-year-old talent Menzi Nezihe Ezgi. She is already rated around 1900 and played for the Turkish team at the European Championship. But there will be more players joining her. In addition I will be doing administrative work, since I am fluent in a number of languages. I may also be present at the World Championship match between Anand and Gelfand in May in Moscow.

Doing what?

We are considering using me as a translator for the TCF President, who is also a FIDE Vice President. He doesn't speak Russian, while I do. That would be my role in Moscow.

Did you have to think hard before accepting the TCF offer?

Not really. It is a multi-functional job, where I move around a lot. After the European Women's Championships in Gazaintep I will stay in Ankara. In Germany you have less chances to work as a trainer, while in Turkey chess is booming to an unbelievable degree. They are investing heavily in youth support.

Will you still have time to play?

Sure thing. I will still play in the major tournaments in Germany, and the Olympiad will take place in August in Istanbul, Turkey. I will also not miss my favourite leagues, for example the German Bundesliga. But I will cut back on the opens.

Afraid of homesickenss?

Nope, in recent years I was very seldom at home anyway.

Elisabeth Pähtz, 27, is a German IM and WGM. She was trained from early childhood by her father Thomas Pähtz, a grandmaster himself. At the age of nine she won her first German championship in the under-11 age group. In 1999 she became the German Women's Champion. In 2002 she became the Youth World Champion in the under 18 age group, and in 2004 the Junior World Champion of the age group under 20.

Previous articles

The world's biggest chess game – possibly by far
29.08.2009 – The chess board is 1200 x 1200 feet in size, with squares measuring 150 feet and pieces 30 to 60 feet in size. The best place to view the action is from the Kyffhäuser Monument in Thuringia, Germany, from an elevation of 1500 feet. The opponents are IM Elisabeth Pähtz, Germany's top female player, and an Internet community that votes every morning at 10 a.m. on their move. You can join in.
Private Pähtz on the attack at the NATO Championship
05.09.2007 – The 18th NATO Chess Championship is taking place in Beytepe-Ankara, Turkey. Combat dress uniforms are discouraged, the soldiers play in civilian clothing. The top seed is IM and former Junior World Champion Elisabeth Pähtz, who is leading with 13 other players after three rounds. But is this wisp of a girl a real soldier in the NATO forces? You better believe it.
Chess stars in PlusCity
14.09.2006 – The scene: a mega mall in Linz, Austria. The actors: Garry Kasparov, Viktor Korchnoi, Elisabeth Pähtz and Kateryna Lahno. The event: two days of total chess, with grandmasters, simuls and scantily clad airbrushed models. And the head of the Austrian government, Wolfgang Schüssel. We bring part one of a big pictorial report.
Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Elisabeth Pähtz win World Juniors
23.11.2005 – He is (yet another) wonder boy from Azerbaijan, she a German talent who already picked up the under 18 title two years ago. Both finished clear first in the boys' and girls' sections of the World Junior Chess Championship in Istanbul, Turkey. We bring you results, games and a big pictorial report by Frits Agterdenbos.
Elli Pähtz, Junior World Champion
24.11.2002 – It is hard to contain our delight. Germany's Elisabeth Pähtz, who had shown great form at at the Chess Olympiad in Bled and then played a exhibition match against Garry Kasparov at the Munich Electronica trade fair, has just won the girls' under 18 section of the World Youth Chess Championships in Heraklio, Crete. you will find a lot of pictures of our 17-year-old star here.
She had him on the ropes!
17.11.2002 – How often have you been a piece up against Garry Kasparov? How often in two separate games? Well, 17-year-old Elisabeth Pähtz did, and had the world's strongest player fighting for survival in two games. in the end, however, Germany's rising chess star succumbed to the five hundred point Elo difference. You will find our illustrated report here.
Driving Miss Elli
16.08.2002 – Getting to a chess tournament can sometimes be a hazardous affair. Elisabeth Pähtz, who was scheduled to take a four hour trip from Dresden to Mainz to attend the Mainz Chess Classic got caught in Dresden's catastrophic floods and had to practically swim over to Mainz. Alexandra Kosteniuk drove ten hours to get there and had to immediately embark on a five-hour simul. Read all about it here.

All photos by WGM Anastasiya Karlovich, with kind permission of the TCF


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