Gukesh, Niemann and Van Foreest head strong field in Menorca

by Carlos Alberto Colodro
4/12/2023 – The second edition of the Menorca Chess Open is taking place on April 11-16 at the Princesa Playa Hotel on the Balearic island of Menorca. Defending champion Dommaraju Gukesh returned to the paradisaic Spanish town, where he is joined by a number of formidable players — i.e. Hans Niemann (pictured), Jorden van Foreest and Vladimir Fedoseev, among others. | Photo: Amruta Mokal

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Will the Spanish streak continue?

Last year, Dommaraju Gukesh was one of the biggest sensations in the chess world. The boy from Chennai excelled at a memorable Olympiad and became the third-youngest player in history to cross the 2700 rating mark. His stunning showings were not limited to elite events, though, as he incredibly won four consecutive open tournaments, all played in Spain. One of these tournaments was the Menorca Open, which celebrated its inaugural edition in 2022.

The second edition of the event is stronger than last year’s, as top seed Gukesh is now joined by fellow rising star Hans Niemann, 2021 Tata Steel Masters winner Jorden van Foreest and tactical whiz Vladimir Fedoseev. Eleven players rated 2600 or above have made their way to the Balearic island, along with a few open-tournament specialists, like Alexandr Fier, Vahap Sanal and José ‘Pepe’ Cuenca.

A 9-round Swiss open, the tournament includes three double-round days, as it is set to finish on Sunday. The time control is 90 minutes for the entire game, with 30-second increments from the first move.

Check out Karsten Müller’s Endgame Magic show with Gukesh as the special guest (replay the episode on-demand for free!)

Round 1 was already played and saw 18 out of 20 top seeds scoring full points. Max Warmerdam obtained a quick victory over Carlos Martinez with white on board 11.


Black’s 21...e5 allowed 22.Nd5, ignoring the attack on the f4-bishop. After thinking for ten minutes, Martinez decided to grab the piece anyway — but that led to a quick defeat: 22...exf4 23.Qxc8 Nxb2 24.Qb7 Nd3 25.Rc8


The threat of a fork on e7 justified the whole line for White. Martinez resigned.

Starting rank list

No. Name Rtg
1 Gukesh D 2730
2 Niemann Hans Moke 2706
3 Van Foreest Jorden 2680
4 Fedoseev Vladimir 2674
5 Nguyen Thai Dai Van 2649
6 Bernadskiy Vitaliy 2619
7 Chigaev Maksim 2617
8 Jumabayev Rinat 2609
9 Harsha Bharathakoti 2608
10 Aryan Chopra 2607
11 Warmerdam Max 2605
12 Fier Alexandr 2599
13 Can Emre 2594
14 Santos Ruiz Miguel 2590
15 Xu Xiangyu 2587
16 Albornoz Cabrera Carlos Daniel 2586
17 Sanal Vahap 2582
18 Jacobson Brandon 2556
19 Cuenca Jimenez Jose Fernando 2553
20 Visakh N R 2552
21 Kobo Ori 2549
22 Pranav V 2545
23 Sosa Tomas 2544
24 Iermito Sebastian 2533
25 Pultinevicius Paulius 2532

...200 players

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Carlos Colodro is a Hispanic Philologist from Bolivia. He works as a freelance translator and writer since 2012. A lot of his work is done in chess-related texts, as the game is one of his biggest interests, along with literature and music.