Wojtaszek and Kulon prevail at the Polish Championships

by Carlos Alberto Colodro
5/8/2021 – Radoslaw Wojtaszek and Klaudia Kulon prevailed in the open and women’s sections of the 2021 Polish Championships, played over the board in Bydgoszcz. This was Wojtaszek’s fourth victory in the national championship, while Kulon won the women’s title for the first time in her career. | Photos: Official site

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An exciting final day of action

The 2021 Polish Championships were played in two different formats. The open section was a 16-player knockout event while the women’s section was a 10-player single round robin. Except for Jan-Krzysztof Duda, every player from the national top 10 participated.

In the end, it was rating favourite Radoslaw Wojtaszek who won the open tournament, defeating Wojciech Moranda in the final match. This was Wojtaszek’s fourth victory in the national championship. The experienced grandmaster had won the event for the first time in 2005, the same year he was awarded the GM title, at 18. Poland’s number 2 also prevailed in 2014 and 2016.

Bartosz Socko, who won the national championship in 2008 and 2013, defeated 17-year-old rising star Pawel Teclaf in the match for third place.

Among the women, Klaudia Kulon won the national title for the first time with a 6/9 score. The 29-year-old IM clinched first place thanks to her final-round victory over Joanna Dworakowska. Karina Cyfka, Jolanta Zawadzka and early leader Joanna Majdan all finished a half point behind.

Polish Chess Championship 2021

The playing hall

Wojtaszek 2½ - 1½ Moranda

The eventual champion showed his class by bouncing back from a loss in game 1 to take the match to tiebreakers. After drawing the first rapid game with the black pieces, Wojtaszek went on to secure tournament victory by winning the second 15-minute game.


White is a pawn up, but the extra pawn is doubled and Black seems to have enough activity to hold a draw at least. However, after 26...Qh5 27.Nf5 Qxe2 28.Qxe2 Bxe2 the queen swap increased White’s edge, especially thanks to his very strong knight in the centre.


29.Nxd6 Rc7 30.Rf8+ Kh7 31.Rc8 Nf5 32.g6 Black forces the knight to leave a strong outpost, but White will quickly relocate his piece in the other available outpost on e6.


33.Nd4 Bh5 34.Re8 Nc4 35.b3 g5 36.Rc8 Ne3 37.Ne6 and now that the white pieces are perfectly placed the d-pawn will decide the game.


37...Rf7 38.d6 Bg4 39.d7 and Moranda resigned. The rook and knight coordinated perfectly to give Wojtaszek overall victory.


Wojciech Moranda, Radek Wojtaszek

Handshakes are back — Wojciech Moranda v Radoslaw Wojtaszek

Kulon leapfrogs Zawadzka

All five games from round 9 finished decisively in favour of the player marshalling the black pieces. Zawadzka had entered the last day of competition as the sole leader, with Kulon alone in second place a half point behind. Kulon, however, was “lucky” to get the black pieces in the ninth round — not only did every game in that round favoured the black player but Kulon also came from winning her last two games with black (and, in fact, drawing twice with white).

Kulon got to show mate on the board against Dworakowska to climb to first place in the standings table.


Black is ready to launch a decisive attack — 37...b4 38.axb4 axb4 39.Ba4 Re1+


40.Kc2 bxc3 41.bxc3 Qa3 42.Kd2 Qxc3#

Final standings

  Title Name Elo Pts TB1
1 IM Klaudia Kulon 2347 6  
2 WGM Jolanta Zawadzka 2399 2-0
3 IM Karina Cyfka 2415 1-1
4 WGM Joanna Majdan 2325 0-2
5 IM Iweta Rajlich 2394 5  
6 GM Monika Soćko 2421  
7 IM Joanna Dworakowska 2322 4 1–0
8 WIM Julia Antolak 2306 4 0–1
9 WFM Michalina Rudzińska 2251 1–0
10 WIM Alicja Śliwicka 2346 0–1

All games



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.


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