Harikrishna wins 2008 SPICE Cup in Lubbock

9/30/2008 – This event is staged by the Texas Tech University and is the acronym for Susan Polgar Institute for Chess Excellence. The ten-player event had an average rating of 2605, making it a category 15 – the highest-rated tournament of its kind held on U.S. soil. With a final round victory Indian GM Pentala Harikrishna joined the leaders with 5.5/9 points, taking the first prize on tie-break. Illustrated report.

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2008 SPICE Cup

The SPICE Cup took place from September 19 to 28, 2008, in the Texas Tech Student Union Building in Lubbock, Texas, staged by the University’s Susan Polgar Institute for Chess Excellence (SPICE). It was a ten-player international round-robin tournament in U.S. history, with an average rating of 2605, making it a Category 15 event – making it the highest-rated tournament of its kind held on U.S. soil.  The tournament ended in a four-way tie for first place, with India's third-highest ranked GM Pentala Harikrishna taking the first prize on tie-break.


The winner: Indian GM Pentala Harikrishna

Final standings

# Player Nat Rtng
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
Pts
Perf
1. Harikrishna, Pentala IND 2668
*
=
=
=
=
=
=
1
1
=
5.5
2678
2. Akobian, Varuzhan USA 2610
=
*
=
=
=
=
1
=
=
1
5.5
2684
3. Onischuk, Alexander USA 2670
=
=
*
=
=
=
1
=
=
1
5.5
2678
4. Kritz, Leonid GER 2610
=
=
=
*
0
1
=
=
1
1
5.5
2684
5. Becerra Rivero, Julio USA 2598
=
=
=
1
*
=
=
=
=
=
5
2649
6. Mikhalevski, Victor ISR 2592
=
=
=
0
=
*
0
1
1
=
4.5
2606
7. Perelshteyn, Eugene USA 2555
=
0
0
=
=
1
*
=
0
1
4
2568
8. Miton, Kamil POL 2580
0
=
=
=
=
0
=
*
1
0
3.5
2528
9. Kaidanov, Gregory USA 2605
0
=
=
0
=
0
1
0
*
1
3.5
2525
10. Stefansson, Hannes ISL 2566
=
0
0
0
=
=
0
1
0
*
2.5
2443


The four winners: Varuzhan Akobian, Pentala Harikrishna, Alexander Onischuk, Leonid Kritz, initiator Susan Polgar


Critical final round game: Harikrishna won and made first place


The setup of the playing venue in Lubbock


The Texas Tech University


The SPICE Cup winner Pentala Harikrishna on the college campus


Lubbock is in Texas, not far from the infamous alien landing site


Guess who was born in Lubbock: rock legend Buddy Holly


... who was also buried there after his tragically short career and the airplane crash

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