Munich GP: Four winners on day one

by Carlos Alberto Colodro
2/3/2023 – The second stage of the 2022–23 Women’s Grand Prix kicked off in Munich, the capital and most populous city of the German state of Bavaria. Four out of six games finished decisively, with Tan Zhongyi (pictured), Alexandra Kosteniuk, Nana Dzagnidze and Elisabeth Paehtz grabbing wins in the first round of the two-week event. | Photo: FIDE / David Llada

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Twelve players, eight nationalities

Four pairings in round 1 of the Munich Grand Prix had compatriots facing each other, as two representatives from China, Germany, India and Ukraine have made their way to the Bavarian capital. In the case of the Ukrainian contest, the players are not only compatriots but also sisters — Anna and Mariya Muzychuk unsurprisingly drew their game.

While Harika Dronavalli and Humpy Koneru also drew, the all-Chinese and all-German matchups did see one of the players prevailing on Thursday. Tan Zhongyi defeated Zhu Jiner and Elisabeth Paehtz got the better of Dinara Wagner. In both cases, the more experienced player managed to defeat her younger opponent.

Paehtz and Tan were not the only winners of the day, though, as Alexandra Kosteniuk and Nana Dzagnidze also scored full points in their first games of the tournament. Kosteniuk defeated Alina Kashlinskaya in what would have been an all-Russian encounter a year ago (Kashlinskaya, who was born in Russia, transferred to Poland last year), while Dzagnidze defeated the often-streaky Zhansaya Abdumalik.

The main sponsor of the event, Roman Krulich, played the first move in the game between the Muzychuk sisters. Krulich’s real estate company not only supports chess in Munich, but also sponsors the ‘Powergirls’ program, which helps young female players from Germany to make the most of their potential.

Roman Krulich, Mariya Muzychuk

Roman Krulich playing Mariya Muzychuk’s first move | Photo: David Llada

Paehtz gets more than she expected

Long-standing German number one in the women’s ranking, Elisabeth Paehtz, prepared a poisonous opening with white, which worked even better than she had probably hoped.


Elisabeth Paehtz, Dinara Wagner

Elisabeth Paehtz and Dinara Wagner | Photo: David Llada

Abdumalik and Dzagnidze play sharp Sicilian

In a fierce tactical battle, Nana Dzagnidze defeated Zhansaya Abdumalik from the black side of a Sicilian. Abdumalik missed a chance to miraculously save a draw, though!


Nana Dzagnidze

Nana Dzagnidze | Photo: David Llada

Kosteniuk’s brilliant tactic

While under pressure on the kingside, Alina Kashlinskaya blundered on move 31, allowing Alexandra Kosteniuk to show her great tactical eye with a good-looking manoeuvre.


31...Ne7 gave way to the merciless 32.Rf6, and after 32...Qe8 White grabs a piece with 33.Rxe6, since the rook cannot be captured due to the mate threat on g7. Black resigned.

Alexandra Kosteniuk

Alexandra Kosteniuk | Photo: David Llada

Standings after round 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.