World Cup: All set for the round of 16

by ChessBase
9/20/2019 – Eight players reached round four of the FIDE World Cup after Wednesday's tiebreaks. The biggest surprise was given by Jeffery Xiong, who knocked out second seed Anish Giri in the 10'+10" rapid phase. The other underdog to go through was Le Quang Liem, who eliminated Vladislav Artemiev. Ding Liren, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, Leinier Dominguez, Yu Yangyi and Peter Svidler also went through. | Photo: FIDE

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Down to the wire

The FIDE World Cup is taking place in Khanty-Mansiysk. It is a seven-round knock-out event for 128 players, with a total prize fund of US$ 1.6 million and a first prize of US$ 110,000. The matches consist of two classical games with a time control of 90 minutes for 40 moves plus 30 minutes for the rest of the game, with an increment of 30 seconds per move. The finals consist of four classical games. Full schedule.

The tiebreaks of round three at the FIDE World Cup saw four of the rating favourites dispatching their rivals in the first pair of rapid encounters, as Ding Liren, Yu Yangyi and Peter Svidler qualified to the next stage after a short day at the office. But there was plenty of excitement in store for the spectators, as three match-ups were only decided in the blitz phase.

It was in the second couple of rapid games that the upsets took place: Jeffery Xiong showed fearless chess to eliminate second seed Anish Giri, while Le Quang Liem got the sole win of his match-up against Vladislav Artemiev in this stage. Both players will be facing higher-rated opponents who are yet to play a rapid game in Khanty Mansiysk — Xiong is paired up against Levon Aronian, while Le will be facing Jan-Krzysztof Duda.

The remaining three duels were decided in the blitz phase, with the rating favourites getting the better of their opponents in all cases. Maxime Vachier-Lagrave defeated Dmitry Jakovenko despite showing some shaky chess; Ian Nepomniachtchi scored a 2:0 win in blitz over current Russian champion Evgeny Tomashevsky; and Leinier Dominguez beat Wang Hao after having bounced back from losses in both rapid phases. 

Ten out of sixteen players in round four were the rating favourites in their section of the bracket, with three out of eight match-ups corresponding perfectly to the pre-tournament seeding — Alexander Grischuk v Leinier Dominguez, Ian Nepomniachtchi v Yu Yangyi and Shakhriyar Mamedyarov v Teimour Radjabov. 

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FIDE Press release

The opening ceremony of the FIDE World Cup took place in the Arts Center for Gifted Children of the North on September 9.

Opening ceremonyIt started with a chess-themed laser show followed by “Heart of taiga” dance performance with the colourful introduction of countries participating in the event.

The protocol part of the ceremony started with speeches by Minister of Sport of the Russian Federation Pavel Kolobkov and FIDE President Arkady Dvorkovich.

Pavel Kolobkov, Russian Minister of Sport, greeted everyone in the capital of Ugra and wished the participants of the World Cup exciting games and brilliant victories.

Kolobkov“I am happy that Russia got the right to carry out such a significant event, thus making Khanty-Mansiysk a chess capital of the world. I wish everyone a good contest, and may the strongest win”, said the Minister.

FIDE President Arkady Dvorkovich, speaking on behalf of the International Chess Federation, congratulated the players on the start of the World Cup, and thanked the organizers – Government of Ugra and Governor Natalya Komarova – for hosting such an important tournament.

DvorkovichArkady Dvorkovich: “We are all familiar with a wonderful chess tradition of Ugra, the region that organized almost all the most important chess tournaments, including the Olympiad. It is wonderful that this region develops chess for everyone regardless of occupation or age. Still, everybody loves to watch games of the strongest players, and the strongest players are present here tonight. I wish you excellent play and best of luck, and declare the 2019 FIDE World Cup open!”

Mr Dvorkovich also announced that on September 8 FIDE Presidential Board approved a bid for the 2020 Candidates Tournament from Yekaterinburg and Russian Chess Federation.

For the drawing of lots, Ding Liren, the highest-rated player of the tournament, was assisted by Chief Arbiter Ashot Vardapetyan two actors dressed as chess kings. The Chinese grandmaster picked a black piece. Therefore, all players with odd numbers will be playing Black in the first game of the first rounds.


Ding Liren drew a black piece at the opening ceremony | Photo: FIDE

The protocol part was followed by an art show by the Art Center for Gifted Children of North, “Grotesque” Theater of Plastic Arts and Pantomime, “Light It” modern dance studio, and Youth Theater. The evening was concluded by the Million Voices song performed by White and Black chess queens.

A press briefing with Natalya Komarova, Pavel Kolobkov, and Arkady Dvorkovich took place after the conclusion of the opening ceremony.

Natalya Komarova, Governor of Ugra: “In chess community, FIDE World Cup is strongly associated with Khanty-Mansiysk. Four out of nine World Cups were carried out in Ugra, and today we are starting the fifth one. One can safely call Khanty-Mansiysk home of this tournament. The organizers do their best to make our guests feel at home.

The World Cup is not only a major sporting event but also an opportunity to experience being a part of a large and close-knit chess family. Ugra and chess are inseparable. We wish to present the exciting world of chess to thousands of Ugra people. By 2024 we want 55% of them engaged in various sports activities, in accordance with the national project “Sport is the way of life”.


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miguelmayo miguelmayo 9/17/2019 07:41
Viva la fiesta del ajedrez!
thesavage4 thesavage4 9/17/2019 04:30
As Nisipeanu prepares for the tiebreak, let us take a minute to commend his worthy action at the end of his match against Nakamura. Leading 1-0 in the match, he offered (or was offered -- I did not see the video) a draw in a winning position in Game 2. This was the move of a gentleman, not unlike a champion leading in the General Classification in the Tour de France letting others win individual group stages. (Consider that Lance Armstrong was disliked for this: He tried to win individual stages even when it was beyond impossible to catch up to him in the General).

We are great fans of Nakamura and are saddened by his loss. Kudos to Nisipeanu for showing the respect Nakamura deserves as a man who has given us so much joy over the board over the past twenty years.
Nekthen Nekthen 9/17/2019 02:19
Would be nice to see the match score on the live diagram
drad drad 9/13/2019 03:44
Wow Movsesian missed a real easy chance against Ding then.
Jayarama Iyer Jayarama Iyer 9/12/2019 08:41
Very funny @thesavage4.
Very true!
Logos Logos 9/12/2019 08:26
@ thesavage4

thesavage4 thesavage4 9/11/2019 03:09
Has anyone else noticed the pairing Xu Xiangyu vs. Bu Xiangzhi? Try saying that five times.
macauley macauley 9/11/2019 12:00
Probably the result was initially recorded wrong on the DGT board. With so many matches this can happen sometimes. But it's correctly recorded as 0-1 now (win for Karjakin).
KrushonIrina KrushonIrina 9/10/2019 08:53
Why does it show Karjakin lost?