Jermuk R5: five decisive games, Ivanchuk and Leko lead

8/14/2009 – What a day, what a round! Ivanchuk beat Cheparinov with the black pieces and joined Peter Leko in the lead; Kamsky scored his first win, defeating Inarkiev; Kasimdzhanov beat leader Aronian; Gelfand produced his first victory, against Akopian; and Karjakin took a full point, his first, against Bacrot. Full report with great photos by Arman Karakhanyan.

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Fifth FIDE Grand Prix in Jermuk, Armenia

This event is taking place from August 8th-24th 2009. It is a Category 19 tournament, with eleven of the 14 players rated over 2700. The event is a memorial to former world champion Tigran Petrosian, who held the title from 1963–1969 and would have turned 80 on June 17th this year.

Round five

Stop the presses! Five out of seven - 71.43% - of the games in Jarmuk today were decisive, bringing the total number to 13 out of 35, or 37.14%. Considering the gravity of this tournament, these are impressive figures, and perhaps better than those of recent memory.

Eljanov-Jakavenko and Alekseev-Leko were of identical length, at 36 moves apiece, the first a Queen's Gambit Declined with 5.Bf4 and the second an Anti-Meran Gambit. Fortunately for Leko, the draw was enough to keep him in a share for the lead. Aronian, on the other hand, went down in a 41-move effort in the Queen's Gambit Meran to Kasimdzhanov, leaving him on the outside looking in.

As for Ivanchuk, he continued his winning ways with a second consecutive victory, this time as Black against Cheparinov. The 42-move Nimzo Indian with 4.Nf3 left the one-time tournament leader demoralized, while allowing the Ukrainian to leapfrog into the lead, alongside Leko.


Like a phoenix rising from the ashes, Ivanchuk's rating seems destined for revival,
with his performance rating currently sitting at a lofty 2867

Of course, the Ukrainians have more to cheer about, with Karjakin putting the boots to Bacrot in a 50-move struggle in the Ruy Lopez Closed.

Not to be outdone, Kamsky finally managed to optimally utilize his White, in the longest game of the round, a 68-mover in a Petroff's Defence against Inarkiev. Gelfand rounded out the group of this round's winners, needing only 42 moves in the Slav Defence to crush Akopian.

This marks the conclusion of the fifth of thirteen rounds, in what is shaping up to be a tournament for the ages, though absent of the world's top four players.

Round 5: Thursday, August 13, 2009

Alekseev Evgeny
½-½
Leko Peter
Cheparinov Ivan
0-1
Ivanchuk Vassily
Kamsky Gata
1-0
Inarkiev Ernesto
Kasimdzhanov Rus.
1-0
Aronian Levon
Gelfand Boris
1-0
Akopian Vladimir
Eljanov Pavel
½-½
Jakovenko Dmitry
Karjakin Sergey
1-0
Bacrot Etienne

With five rounds down, and eight to go, the players are taking a much-deserved break from action. After three rounds of fighting chess, Dmitry Jakavenko, understandably, took the last two a little easier. In those same three rounds, Ivan Cheparinov went from co-leader to a full point back of the lead.


In the lead since the start: Peter Leko from Hungary

Peter Leko may very well be the story of the tournament. He has shared the lead of this tournament from the outset, with only the names of his co-leaders changing.


Leapfrogging to Leko in the lead: Vassily Ivanchuk of Ukraine

Vassily Ivanchuk, Leko's current partner at the top, has also had an unpredictably outstanding tournament. For an on-again, off-again player, he certainly seems to be lighting the board on fire currently.

Gata Kamsky has been having a rough go of it so far, though he chalked up his first win in this most recently concluded round, against the luckless Ernesto Inarkiev, who has nothing more than two draws to his credit.


Just two draws from the first five games: Russian GM Ernesto Inarkiev

Etienne Bacrot, Evgeny Alekseev and Vladimir Akopian are each playing reasonably, and might be expected to gain some ground on the leading pack, though Alekseev is the only one of the three that has seen the winning side of a game.


Just 2.0/5, win a win and two losses: Evgeny Alekseev of Russia

Having sealed his first victory in the fifth round, Karjakin seems to be stepping up his efforts as well, while sharing a tie for 6-9 with his fellow countryman, Pavel Eljanov, who has not yet been defeated – and not yet won.


Israeli GM Boris Gelfand, with four draws and one victory

Ever the crowd-pleaser, Levon Aronian sits in the chasing pack, alongside Rustam Kasimdzhanov, who has not played this well in a while, and Boris Gelfand, who continually defies the growing age gap between himself and the ever-changing crop of young talent. The story continues to take shape on Saturday.

All pictures by Arman Karakhanyan, courtesy of FIDE

Current standings


FIDE Grand Prix Jermuk 2009 – Schedule and results

Round 1: Sunday, August 09, 2009

Inarkiev Ernesto
0-1
Leko Peter
Ivanchuk Vassily
½-½
Aronian Levon
Alekseev Evgeny
½-½
Akopian Vladimir
Cheparinov Ivan
1-0
Jakovenko Dmitry
Kamsky Gata
½-½
Bacrot Etienne
Kasimdzhanov Rus.
½-½
Karjakin Sergey
Gelfand Boris
½-½
Eljanov Pavel

Round 2: Monday, August 10, 2009

Leko Peter
½-½
Eljanov Pavel
Karjakin Sergey
½-½
Gelfand Boris
Bacrot Etienne
½-½
Kasimdzhanov Rus.
Jakovenko Dmitry
1-0
Kamsky Gata
Akopian Vladimir
½-½
Cheparinov Ivan
Aronian Levon
1-0
Alekseev Evgeny
Inarkiev Ernesto
½-½
Ivanchuk Vassily

Round 3: Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Ivanchuk Vassily
½-½
Leko Peter
Alekseev Evgeny
1-0
Inarkiev Ernesto
Cheparinov Ivan
½-½
Aronian Levon
Kamsky Gata
½-½
Akopian Vladimir
Kasimdzhanov Rus.
½-½
Jakovenko Dmitry
Gelfand Boris
½-½
Bacrot Etienne
Eljanov Pavel
½-½
Karjakin Sergey

Round 4: Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Leko Peter
1-0
Karjakin Sergey
Bacrot Etienne
½-½
Eljanov Pavel
Jakovenko Dmitry
½-½
Gelfand Boris
Akopian Vladimir
½-½
Kasimdzhanov Rus.
Aronian Levon
1-0
Kamsky Gata
Inarkiev Ernesto
½-½
Cheparinov Ivan
Ivanchuk Vassily
1-0
Alekseev Evgeny

Round 5: Thursday, August 13, 2009

Alekseev Evgeny
½-½
Leko Peter
Cheparinov Ivan
0-1
Ivanchuk Vassily
Kamsky Gata
1-0
Inarkiev Ernesto
Kasimdzhanov Rus.
1-0
Aronian Levon
Gelfand Boris
1-0
Akopian Vladimir
Eljanov Pavel
½-½
Jakovenko Dmitry
Karjakin Sergey
1-0
Bacrot Etienne

Round 6: Saturday, August 15, 2009

Leko Peter
-
Bacrot Etienne
Jakovenko Dmitry
-
Karjakin Sergey
Akopian Vladimir
-
Eljanov Pavel
Aronian Levon
-
Gelfand Boris
Inarkiev Ernesto
-
Kasimdzhanov Rus.
Ivanchuk Vassily
-
Kamsky Gata
Alekseev Evgeny
-
Cheparinov Ivan
GamesReport

Round 7: Sunday, August 16, 2009

Cheparinov Ivan
-
Leko Peter
Kamsky Gata
-
Alekseev Evgeny
Kasimdzhanov Rus.
-
Ivanchuk Vassily
Gelfand Boris
-
Inarkiev Ernesto
Eljanov Pavel
-
Aronian Levon
Karjakin Sergey
-
Akopian Vladimir
Bacrot Etienne
-
Jakovenko Dmitry
GamesReport

Round 8: Monday, August 17, 2009

Leko Peter
-
Jakovenko Dmitry
Akopian Vladimir
-
Bacrot Etienne
Aronian Levon
-
Karjakin Sergey
Inarkiev Ernesto
-
Eljanov Pavel
Ivanchuk Vassily
-
Gelfand Boris
Alekseev Evgeny
-
Kasimdzhanov Rus.
Cheparinov Ivan
-
Kamsky Gata
GamesReport

Round 9: Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Kamsky Gata
-
Leko Peter
Kasimdzhanov Rus.
-
Cheparinov Ivan
Gelfand Boris
-
Alekseev Evgeny
Eljanov Pavel
-
Ivanchuk Vassily
Karjakin Sergey
-
Inarkiev Ernesto
Bacrot Etienne
-
Aronian Levon
Jakovenko Dmitry
-
Akopian Vladimir
GamesReport

Round 10: Thursday, August 20, 2009

Leko Peter
-
Akopian Vladimir
Aronian Levon
-
Jakovenko Dmitry
Inarkiev Ernesto
-
Bacrot Etienne
Ivanchuk Vassily
-
Karjakin Sergey
Alekseev Evgeny
-
Eljanov Pavel
Cheparinov Ivan
-
Gelfand Boris
Kamsky Gata
-
Kasimdzhanov Rus.
GamesReport

Round 11: Friday, August 21, 2009

Kasimdzhanov Rus.

-
Leko Peter

Gelfand Boris

-
Kamsky Gata

Eljanov Pavel

-
Cheparinov Ivan

Karjakin Sergey

-
Alekseev Evgeny

Bacrot Etienne

-
Ivanchuk Vassily

Jakovenko Dmitry

-
Inarkiev Ernesto

Akopian Vladimir

-
Aronian Levon
GamesReport

Round 12: Saturday, August 22, 2009

Leko Peter
-
Aronian Levon
Inarkiev Ernesto
-
Akopian Vladimir
Ivanchuk Vassily
-
Jakovenko Dmitry
Alekseev Evgeny
-
Bacrot Etienne
Cheparinov Ivan
-
Karjakin Sergey
Kamsky Gata
-
Eljanov Pavel
Kasimdzhanov Rus.
-
Gelfand Boris
GamesReport

Round 13: Sunday, August 23, 2009

Gelfand Boris
-
Leko Peter
Eljanov Pavel
-
Kasimdzhanov Rus.
Karjakin Sergey
-
Kamsky Gata
Bacrot Etienne
-
Cheparinov Ivan
Jakovenko Dmitry
-
Alekseev Evgeny
Akopian Vladimir
-
Ivanchuk Vassily
Aronian Levon
-
Inarkiev Ernesto
GamesReport
Monday, August 24, 2009
Departure

The games start at 15:00h Armenian time (12:00 noon CEST, 11:00h London, 6 a.m. New York and 3 a.m. California). Full live coverage, including discussion and analysis with thousands of other visitors, is available on Playchess.

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