Whitewashing Young Masters in Lausanne

9/18/2005 – Eight of the strongest, most promising talents in international chess, male and female, are playing a knockout tournament in the Swiss town of Lausanne. In the first round we were treated to a demonstration of what a 200+ Elo point difference and a bit of experience mean: a 2-0 whitewash. Illustrated report.

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6th Lausanne Young Masters

Young Masters: "les duels des champions", is a prestigious tournament with eight of the best under-20 players of the world. It is being staged from September 14–19, 2005, at the Casino de Montbenon in Lausanne. There is are also two further tournaments being played at the location, the "Maîtres contre Espoirs" (Masters vs Hopefuls) and the "Open Général".

The Young Masters are Junior World Champion Pentala Harikrishna, 19, from India; 17-year-old Hikaru Nakamura, the youngest player to win the US championship since Bobby Fischer; Ukrainian champion and Chess Olympiad Gold medalist Andrei Volokitin, 19; 2003 Junior World Champion Shakhiyar Mamedyarov, 20, from Azerbaidjan; Magnus Carlsen from Norway and Maxime Vachier-Lagrave from France, both 14 years old and the world's youngest grandmasters; and two of the strongest under-20 female players, former Junior World Champion Elisabeth Pähtz and Nana Dzagnidze from Georgia.

In the quarter-finals of this knockout event both the ladies and both the 14-year-olds were eliminated (they play for places 5–8). In the semi-finals Volokitin and Nakamura have won their white games. The former drew the second game, but Mamedyarov fought back and forced a tiebreak, which Nakamura won. The games are being covered live on the official web site and on Playchess.com.

Current standings:


Picture gallery


The 250 Elo point difference led to a 2-0 win by Volokitin over Elli Pähtz


Here the difference was 220 rating points, but the result was the same: 2-0 for Nakamura


119 points was also enough for a 2-0 result by Mamedyarov against Vachier-Lagrave


Young Magnus is getting a rough ride from his older colleagues. But the 117 points stronger and five years older Pentala Harikrishna could "only" manage a 1½-½.


Preparing for a human game of chess


And actually playing it, in the park by the lake

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