World Women’s Team Ch: Kazakhstan still perfect, USA beat China

by Carlos Alberto Colodro
9/8/2023 – With a round to go in the pool stage, four teams have already secured their spots in the knockout of the World Women’s Team Championship. Kazakhstan, the only team that won all four of their matches so far, and Georgia advanced from Pool A, while the USA and Poland made it to the next stage in Pool B. Besides Egypt, all the remaining squads still have chances to qualify after Friday’s fifth round. | Pictured: Alua Nurmanova | Photo: Michal Walusza

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Pool A: Kazakhstan perfect, India in trouble

With two consecutive wins by the smallest of margins, Kazakhstan became the only team to end day 2 at the World Women’s Team Championship with a perfect 8 out of 8 score. Despite being 2 match points ahead of Georgia in the standings, the Kazakh team has collected 10½ game points to Georgia’s 11½. Nonetheless, Georgia also secured a spot in the knockout with their 6 match points.

As per the teams still in the hunt for the remaining two spots, France and Ukraine are tied with 4 match points and 8 game points each. India, on their part, after losing to Ukraine and Georgia on Thursday, stand 2 match points behind.

Only one round remains to be played on Friday. India will play against the underdogs from Egypt, who have yet to score a single match point in Bydgoszcz, while France and Ukraine will face each other. Interestingly, if France and Ukraine draw and maintain their perfect equality in match points and game points, both teams would advance to the knockout, leaving India out of contention.

Harika Dronavalli, Bella Khotenashvili

Bella Khotenashvili (Georgia) beat Harika Dronavalli (India) in round 4 | Photo: Michal Walusza

Sophie Milliet

France’s Sophie Milliet | Photo: Michal Walusza

Standings after round 4

All games

Pool B: USA beat direct contenders

This pool saw two surprising results in round 3. FIDE Americas managed to hold the United States to a draw thanks to María José Campos’ win over Annie Wang, while Bulgaria obtained a convincing victory by a 3-1 score over China — Antoaneta Stefanova and Viktoria Radeva were the heroes of the Bulgarian team in this match.

Continuing their over-performing run, Bulgaria went on to draw Poland in round 4, while China suffered a second consecutive loss in their match against the United States. In another somewhat unexpected outcome, the under-performing German team got the better of FIDE Americas, keeping their chances alive going into the round-robin’s final match.

Much like in Pool A, the two qualified teams — the United States and Poland — will face each other in round 5, which means all eyes will be put on China vs FIDE Americas and Germany vs Bulgaria, as the four teams fight for the two remaining qualifying spots in this group.

Oliwia Kiolbasa, Antoaneta Stefanova

Former women’s world champion Antoaneta Stefanova (Bulgaria) playing white against Oliwia Kiolbasa (Poland) | Photo: Michal Walusza

Alice Lee

Team USA | Photo: Michal Walusza

Standings after round 4

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.