Vlad Tkatchiev rules in Corsica

by ChessBase
11/3/2002 – 50 GMs from 32 different countries and a total of 350 players. Of these 16 qualified for the prestigious Masters, including Vladislav Tkatchiev, who displayed a stratospheric performance of 2807. The flamboyant Vlad joins Anand, Shirov, Karpov, Dreev, Jussupov and other top players in the quarterfinals today. You can watch live coverage at the on Europe-Echecs website, who have provided us with this report from Corsica.

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Sea, sun and chess (2)

Autumn can be a wonderful season if you are playing Chess in French along the Mediterranean Sea. Even there are sometimes terrific storms, like last week on Wednesday the 30 of October, the sun is shining almost every day and the weather is sweater than in any other place in Europe. The top event of that sweat beginning of November 2002, in French, is the 6th Open International de Corse, played since Thursday the 31 of October in the theatre of Bastia.

Leo's Masters

The incredible Leo Battesti is in lead of the organisation, assisted by an impressive team of professional and not paid enthusiasts. In fact, these welcoming fanatics realised here an impressive job in less than ten years for the development of the game. Nearly 1% of the population (250,000) of this so beautiful island is now playing chess in clubs. In 1996, they were less than two hundred. Vishy Anand, who won the title in 2000 and 2001, Alexeï Shirov and the legendary Anatoly Karpov are the guest-stars of this 6th edition.

All in all, 50 GMs from 32 different countries and a total of 350 players have reached the delightfull island. Traditionally, the total prize is really attractive: 100,000 Euros for this edition, 20,000 Euros for the winner! Only 16 of them qualified on Thursday evening for the prestigious Masters, after a dramatic marathon of nine games (10 minutes + 10 seconds per move), the last one beginning after midnight.

Vlad Tkatchiev won this round with a stratospheric performance at 2807, and notably after a luminous win against A. Shirov. But yesterday night was another day for Vlad the magnificent! The French champion stayed on stage till 2.00 a.m. because he was obliged to play two more blitz to qualify against the GM Igor Glek. The tension was crazy, but Igor Glek lost suddenly his nerves and gave a rook for nothing. Alea jacta est! Another thing was really impressive. It is the simple fact that Anatoly Karpov, who was supposed to play against Vald or Igor in the next round, also stayed on the stage till the end of this spectacular match.

Welcome in Corsica, Mister Karpov!

In Corsica, nearly 15% of the top 100 players are fighting on the board, and they like it! This is a deep truth. Another thing is clear. Anatoly Karpov enjoyed particularly that exquisite climate. When he arrived in the South of France ten days ago, to play first the Trophy C.C.A.S. in Cap d'Agde, nothing was clear about the actual level of the 12th World Champion. According to the last the Elo rating list (2688), it was easy to think that Anatoly, 51 years old, is still one of the most formidable players in the World. In Cap d'Agde, he played with confidence up to the final, when he lost suddenly his deep thoughts against a wonderful Boris Gelfand (0-2).

So, was Anatoly already tired after one week of a tough contest? Actually, the answer is no! The fact is that the confidence he has got in his deep chess knowledge allowed the great champion to qualify himself here, only 24 hours after his defeat against Boris. And so, after a difficult trip under the storm from Agde to Bastia, early in the morning, Anatoly beat easily Jurij Zezulkin (2-0) in the first round of the Masters. Furthermore, the fascinated Anatoly seems to have reached the Open Corsica with the simple idea to win the tournament, and on that way to add one more line to his fantastic world record of victories in single conquests.

Results of the 1/8th Finals

Anand Vishy - Moreno Carnero Javier 1/2 1-0
Milov Vadim - Jussupov Arthur 0-1 0-1
Karpov Anatoly - Zezulkin Jurij 1-0 1/2
Shirov Alexei - Mikhalevski Victor 1-0 1-0
Pavlovic, Milos - Gurevitch Mikhail 0-1 0-1
Brodsky Michail - Dreev Alexey 0-1 0-1
Glek Igor - Tkachiev Vladislav 1-0 0-1 Playoff 1.5-2.5
Epishin Vladimir - Kazhgaleyev Murtas 0-1 0-1


Jean-Michel Péchine

Reports about chess: tournaments, championships, portraits, interviews, World Championships, product launches and more.


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