Russian teams: "Bronze Riders" defend title

by Klaus Besenthal
5/13/2019 – On Friday, the Russian team championships wrapped up in the Black Sea city of Sochi. In the "Premier League" the St. Petersburg team "Bronze Riders" defended their title. Two points behind were "ShSM Legacy Square Capital" (Moscow) and the Sverdlovsk team "Sima-Land" by ex-world champion Anatoly Karpov (in the left part of the picture, with microphone). In the women's team competition, "Yugra" won the title for the third time. | Photos: Vladimir Barsky

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Russian Team Championships 2019 

The Russian team championships are traditionally held in Sochi, and played over just as compared to the whole year-long leagues of other countries.  

The highest division, in which many internationally known grandmasters play, is the "Premier League": ten teams play here over nine rounds to determine the champion. In addition, there is the "Higher League" (a class below the "Premier League" settled), a women's championship, a senior championship and youth championships in three different age groups.

After five rounds, the Bronze Riders were undefeated, and they rode their lead all the way to the finish line.

Final table of the "Premier League" after 9 rounds

Rk. Team  TB1 
1 Bronzener Reiter (St. Petersburg) 17
2 ShSM Legacy Square Capital (Moscow) 15
3 Sima-Land (Sverdlovsk region) 15
4 Guards of Law and Order (Saint Petersburg) 11
5 Molodezhka (Tyumen region) 10
6 Ladya (Kazan) 9
7 Siberia (Novosibirsk) 7
8 Moscow region 4
9 SShOR (Saint Petersburg) 2
10 Men's Movement (Saint Petersburg) 0

Even though the team names do not have as much international recognition as in the German League: the names of the players are indicative of the star power the Russian leagues bring in. A small selection: Nikita Vitiugov (Elo 2734) played top board for St. Petersburg, the fabourites. He was joined by Leinier Dominguez Perez (2750), Maxim Matlakov (2697), Maxim Rodshtein (2699) and Evgeniy Najer (2674). In "ShSM Legacy Square Capital" Ernesto Inarkiev (2691) occupied the top board, while in "Sima" featured ex-world champion Anatoly Karpov (2616) — although he played only one game, in which he could contribute a draw to towards the third place finish of his team.

On Round 9, "Bronze Rider" (right: Leinier Dominguez) played "Molodezhka" with David Paravyan and Andrey Esipenko on the top boards

A heated competitive atmosphere: "Ladya" (right) with Vladislav Artemiev and Gata Kamsky

These boys and girls also fought for honors in their age group

All games (Premier League)


"Yugra" took the women's team competition, edging out SShOR from St. Petersburg by a narrow margin of 1½ board points, despite the fact that SShOR won the direct encounter between the two teams.

Olga Girya was the top scorer for the winning team, undefeated with 7 points from 8 games. Here's an unusual and dominating position from her final effort in round eight:


Girya won after 29.e6 e7 30.f2 c5 31.d5 xb2 32.xf8+ 1-0

Final standings (Women)

Rk. Team  TB1 
1 «Югра» (ХМАО – Югра) 16
2 «СШОР по шахматам и шашкам» (г. Санкт-Пе 16
3 «ШСМ Legacy Square Capital» (г. Москва) 13
4 (Истра-а.лв) (г. Москва) 12
5 «Московская область» (Московская область 11
6 «Ладья» (Республика Татарстан) 8
7 «Южный Урал» (Челябинская область) 8
8 «ФШНО» (Нижегородская область) 7
9 «Букавушки» (Самарская область) 7
10 «Экспромт» (г. Москва) 6
11 «Девятая горизонталь» (г. Москва) 6
12 СК «Толпар» (Республика Башкортостан) 5
13 «Алтайский край» (Алтайский край) 2

All games (Women)


Translation from German: Macauley Peterson


Klaus Besenthal is computer scientist, has followed and still follows the chess scene avidly since 1972 and since then has also regularly played in tournaments.


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