Wijk aan Zee/Tata round thirteen preview

by ChessBase
1/27/2013 – Who will win the 75th Tata Steel Tournament? Okay, we know Magnus Carlsen has already clinched the A Section, but the B and C sections are still hotly contested. The final round starts on Sunday, January 27, at 12:00 noon (i.e. an hour and a half earlier than usual). To make things especially interesting we recommend you update your Playchess client and try out our latest Guess-a-Move feature.

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75th Tata Steel Chess Tournament

This event is taking place from January 12-27. The venue is as usual the traditional De Moriaan Center in the Dutch sea resort of Wijk aan Zee. The tournament has three Grandmaster Groups, which have 14 players and are held as full round robins (each competitor plays against every other). The rate of play for all three groups is 100 minutes for 40 moves, then 50 minutes for 20 moves and finally 15 minutes for the rest of the game, with a 30 seconds/move increment starting with the first move of the game.

Final round preview

These are the standings after eleven rounds of play:

It is clear that nobody can catch Magnus, who has already won the A Group of the 75th Tata Steel Chess Tournament. The only real question left open is who will take second and third: Anand and Aronia are top contenders, since they are a full point ahead of their nearest rivals (Leko and Karjakin). Both have opponents from the bottom half of the score table in the final round, as does Sergey Karjakin – barely. Peter Leko has white against Hou Yifan, but given the Chinese GM's propensity for black in this event that may not be such a big advantage. Here are the full pairings for the final round:

Group A: Round 13 - Sunday January 27
Sergey Karjakin - Loek van Wely  
Hou Yifan - Peter Leko  
Erwin L'Ami - Ivan Sokolov  
Wang Hao - Vishy Anand  
Hikaru Nakamura - Pentala Harikrishna  
Anish Giri - Magnus Carlsen  
Fabiano Caruana - Levon Aronian  

We turn to the other two groups. In the B Section everything is wide open: three players are tied for first, and all three have relatively weak or out-of-form opponents.

Arkadij Naiditsch and Sergei Movsesian face the two tail-enders Sipke Ernst and Alexander Ipatov respectively – Naiditsch in fact has white. 16-year-old GM Richárd Rapport has black against the experienced Predrag Nikolic, hwo has has a bad tournament with six losses so far. Here are all the pairings for the last round:

Group B: Round 13 - Sunday January 27
Daniil Dubov - Robin van Kampen  
Jan Smeets - Maxim Turov  
Nils Grandelius - Sergey Tiviakov  
Alexander Ipatov - Sergei Movsesian  
Arkadij Naiditsch - Sipke Ernst  
Jan Timman - Romain Edouard  
Predrag Nikolic - Richard Rapport  

In the C Group GMs Sabino Brunello from Italy and Fernando Peralta from Argentina are tied for first and 2½ points ahead of the rest of the field. They will decide Gold and Silver by themselves.

Both contenders for overall victory have the black pieces in the final round, Fernando Peralta has the stronger opponent. The two girls are unhappily at the bottom of the table, and both face 2500+ opponents in the final round. IM Mark van der Werf, the only player they can overtake, has to play GM Krikor Mekhitarian of Brazil, rated 2543, but has the white pieces.

Group C: Round 13 - Sunday January 27
Hjorvar Gretarsson - Alexandra Goryachkina  
Mark van der Werf - Krikor Mekhitarian  
Twan Burg - Igor Bitensky  
Oleg Romanishin - Lisa Schut  
Miguoel Admiraal - Sabino Brunello  
David Klein - Robin Swinkels  
Alexander Kovchan - Fernando Peralta  

Commentary schedule

The final round of live commentary will be delivered by GM Daniel King. Note that since the games start at 12:00 noon the commentary will also be an hour and a half earlier than usual – so stand by around 1:00 p.m. to listen to Danny's take on the action.

Guess a move on Playchess

There is a new function on the Playchess server that you may like to try out in this final round. If you have updated to the latest Playchess client (see below) you might have noticed that there is a new button in the ribbon on top of the "Home" screen:

When you are following a live game, and only then, this button is active.

Clicking on "Guess a Move" in the current position of a live game produces a list of all legal moves:

You can choose a move and vote on it, i.e. predict what the player will do next. Note also that you can win ducats by guessing a certain number of moves right. The Jackpot is displayed in the Guess-a-Move window and may be different for different games. The comma is a European decimal point, i.e. 40,00 Ducats is forty Ducats, not 4000.

Note that you can be watching a number of games and make predictions for all of them. Playchess allows you to load multiple games, and clicking on any of them will take you to the appropriate Guess-a-Move window, which remains open until you close it with the "x" button on the top right. You can also place the Guess-a-Move windows anywhere on the screen.

And the answer to your final question is "yes": you can use engines installed on your machine, or even the Cloud function, to help you predict the moves. And the Live Book, and whatever other tools you may wish to employ.

Addendum: here's a quick capture of our (not very successful) guesses in the final round

If you do not see the Guess-a-Move button it means you have not updated your program. You can check in the "File" menu at the top left of the Playchess client:

If you are using a different program to access Playchess – e.g. ChessBase 10, 11, 12, Fritz 13, Rybka, Houdini – then you will not see the Guess-a-Move button (yet). It is best to download the Playchess client and watch the games of the final round in Wijk with it. The latest update can be found here:

New members can start using the Guess-a-Move function immediately – just install the latest Playchess client and log in for a trial subscription.


The games are being broadcast live on the official web site and on the chess server Playchess.com. If you are not a member you can download a free Playchess client there and get immediate access. You can also use ChessBase 12 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs.

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