HZ Chess Open won by Krasenkow

by Albert Silver
8/16/2014 – Coinciding with the Olympiad, the HZ Chess Tournament was held in Vlissingen, Holland, featuring a very healthy lineup of grandmasters, masters and amateurs, and brought in as its showcase player, Chinese GM Bu Xiangzhi, rated 2707. The tournament was announced as having a maximum of 250 players allowed to play, and the roster was filled up quite easily. An illustrated report.

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Naturally, it was a great opportunity for locals to challenge one of the greatest players in the world

Bu Xiangzhi, who has been enjoying a great phase in his play, especially after his fantastic 9.0/10
result at the Politiken Open, was all too happy to give a simul

One interesting point of note in the regulations is the following statement:

The rate of play is 40 moves in 90 minutes, followed by 30 minutes for the rest of the game, with an increment of 30 seconds per move from the start of the game. The FIDE Laws will apply, except article 6.6a. The rule will be instead: A player, not present at the chessboard within one hour after the scheduled time to start, loses the game, unless the arbiter sees a good reason to decide otherwise.

This sort of exception to FIDE's Zero Tolerance rule is increasingly popular since it has become evident that no amount of lobbying or insatisfaction will change it. In a recent interview, the president explicitly stated he thought there was no difference between what is expected of a ten-year-old amateur or a world championship match, leaving it up to organizers to provide their own solutions.

The first round in a swiss means strong against weak, so no doubt Bu's opponent was being
wished a long resistance or painless mate

Chess is somewhat unique in its appeal and enjoyability for all ages

Already mesmerized by the board

A little theatrics to unsettle the opponent

The nine-round swiss open tournament started much as expected, and after five rounds, local GM Ernst Sipke stood alone with 5.0/5, with seven players close behind with 4.5/5. Round six turned out to be a decisive regarding Bu's fate and several others, as heads rolled, including an important win by Sipke of the Chinese grandmaster.

Ernst Sipke was on top of the world after six rounds, with 6.0/6 and beating the top seed

WFM Anna Endress finished with 5.0/9

A wide-angle view of the playing hall

The Dutch grandmaster did his darndest to maintain his lead, and though he was always at the forefront, he was finally caught in round eight by Russian Vyacheslav Ikonnikov who had strung together two straight wins to Sipke's two draws, with both sharing 7.0/8. Right behind was a tight group of five players with 6.5/8 and it was clear that the last round would decide all the marbles.

After the rounds, or before, players could go outside and enjoy a drink or analyze

This is why chess tournaments are so special: you can play anytime of the day online, but
there is nothing quite like joining up with others sharing the passion and fun

The third straight draw was his undoing, and in the final round, two more players joined the leaders, including Sergey Fedorchuk, the second-seed of the tournament with 2665 Elo, and the tournament winner 51-year-old GM Mihal Krasenkow, all with 7.5/9.

Mihal Krasenkow was always in contention, and it was a last-round win that clinched first

Pictures by De Pion

Final standings

Rk Name Pts Fed Rtg Perf TB
1 GM Krasenkow, Michal 7.5 POL 2628 2692 57.5
2 GM Ernst, Sipke 7.5 NED 2566 2692 56.5
3 GM Ikonnikov, Vyacheslav 7.5 RUS 2551 2657 55.5
4 GM Fedorchuk, Sergey A. 7.5 UKR 2665 2691 53.5
5 GM Hausrath, Daniel 7.0 GER 2530 2580 55.0
6 GM Bu, Xiangzhi 7.0 CHN 2707 2582 53.5
7 GM Van Den Doel, Erik 6.5 NED 2554 2476 54.0
8 FM Sadikhov, Ulvi 6.5 BEL 2335 2407 53.0
9 Pucher, Sebastien 6.5 FRA 2293 2416 52.5
10 FM Ten Hertog, Hugo 6.5 NED 2356 2435 52.5
11 IM Ponizil, Cyril 6.5 CZE 2428 2419 52.0
12 IM De Jong, Migchiel 6.5 NED 2345 2459 51.5
13 Kevlishvili, Robby 6.5 NED 2277 2335 51.0
14 IM Geirnaert, Steven 6.5 BEL 2419 2360 50.0
15 GM Romanishin, Oleg M 6.5 UKR 2509 2420 49.5
16 FM Hopman, Pieter 6.5 NED 2387 2375 49.5
17 GM Semcesen, Daniel 6.5 SWE 2489 2436 49.5
18 FM Van Foreest, Jorden 6.5 NED 2467 2351 48.0
19 Maris, Ivo 6.5 NED 2178 2298 47.5
20 FM Piceu, Tom 6.5 BEL 2330 2337 47.0
21 IM Ducarmon, Quinten 6.5 NED 2479 2331 46.0
22 GM Pruijssers, Roeland 6.5 NED 2517 2359 46.0
23 FM Sowray, Peter J 6.5 ENG 2325 2195 44.0
24 GM Venkatesh, M.R. 6.0 IND 2503 2428 55.0
25 FM Verstraeten, Rein 6.0 BEL 2298 2367 52.5


You can also use ChessBase 12 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs to replay the games in PGN. You can also download our free Playchess client, which will in addition give you immediate access to the chess server Playchess.com.

Born in the US, he grew up in Paris, France, where he completed his Baccalaureat, and after college moved to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He had a peak rating of 2240 FIDE, and was a key designer of Chess Assistant 6. In 2010 he joined the ChessBase family as an editor and writer at ChessBase News. He is also a passionate photographer with work appearing in numerous publications, and the content creator of the YouTube channel, Chess & Tech.


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