WYCC 2015: the early leaders and surprises

by Albert Silver
10/30/2015 – After five rounds of competition, the World Youth championship has hit the midway point. Though many names deserve the highest praise, one of the surprises has been the numerous successes in the Boys events by the Iranians, with leaders in the Under-12, Under-18, and the top seed in the Under-14. Of note also is Egyptian Adham Fawzy, leading the Boys Under-16. A pictorial by Reint Dykema.

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This is Nikolai Shmyrev one of the youngest participants in the competition at age six

He and others play in this hall where the Boys Under-8 competition takes place

The competition is fierce even when you are just seven years old

Some players from the Girls Under-8 event. From left: Nguyen Le Cam Hien, Nguyen Hoang
Thai Ngoc and Nguyen Linh Dan

In the Boys Under-10 competition, Javokhir Sindarov, rated 2299 is the top seed

However, the current leaders are Indian Praggnanandhaa R with 5.0/5, and...

... Justin Wang from the US also with 5.0/5. They will collide in round six.

Arthur Guo lost to Justin in round five, but the competition is only half done

In order to keep going, one needs brain food...

... lots and lots of brainfood!

Morale is very important, therefore Patty Cake is a must

In the Boys Under-12 group, Alireza Firouzja from Iran has been living
up to his number three ranking with 4.5/5 and second

Still, at the very top is FM Nodirbek Abdusattorov, 2432 FIDE, and leading
with an impeccable 5.0/5. Indeed the Force runs strongly in his family. His
father had it, he has it....

... his sister has it! In spite of being ranked 16th at the start, his sister
Bakhora Abdusattorova is leading the Girls Under-16 with a perfect 5.0/5.

In the Boys Under-14, American FM Nicolas Checa has had a fantastic
start with 4.5/5. This compounds his nearly 200 Elo gained in the last
12 months, and the IM norm he recently scored at the Washington Open.

Nevertheless, the leader of the Boys Under-14 is Ukrainian Kiriil Shevchenko
who is on a perfect 5.0/5 after defeating Andrey Esipenko from Russia

In the Girls Under-14, R Vaishali from India has had a perfect start

One of the big surprises of the many competitions so far has been the Egyptian FM Adham Fawzy,
who not only added over 300 Elo since 2014, but is now leading the Boys Under-16 with 4.5/5

A special mention goes to Rachel Miller, Jamaica's first representative, playing in the Girls Under-16

Team Namibia

The proud representatives of Sri Lanka

The Boys Under-18 is played here

And it is also here in the Boys Under-18 that the most surprising result until now has taken
place with untitled Masoud Mosadeghpour from Iran and ranked 17th, who alone has 5.0/5,
including wins over two of the only 2500+ players in his group. Impressive.

Also enjoying a superb start is Argentinian Tomas Sosa, 2405 FIDE,
who started with 4.5/5, and a 2642 performance

Also from South America is Roberto Carneiro with 3.0/5

In spite of numerous players rated well over 2300 in the Girls Under-18 section,
WFM V Varshini from India, with a FIDE rating of 2205, leads with 5.0/5

In sole second is WFM M Mahalakshmi with 4.5/5

Dorsa Derakhshani from Iran is not far behind with 4.0/5. This talented young
lady has also contributed to ChessBase News on more than one occasion.

Tijana Blagovic from Montenegro is the fourth seed with 2315 Elo

Rosario Mendez: When life reflects chess

Enjoying the exquisite Lagomandra beach

All photos by Reint Dykema

About the photographer

Reint Dykema is a passionate chess dad. Both his two sons Dirkho and Joshua compete this year in the World Youth championships.

This is the third World Youth that Dykema has the opportunity to take photos and work closely with ChessBase.

In last year's World Youth championship in Durban, Dykema was the official photographer.

Over weekends he is also a wedding photographer when he is not taking photos in the local tournaments in South Africa.


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Born in the US, he grew up in Paris, France, where he completed his Baccalaureat, and after college moved to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He had a peak rating of 2240 FIDE, and was a key designer of Chess Assistant 6. In 2010 he joined the ChessBase family as an editor and writer at ChessBase News. He is also a passionate photographer with work appearing in numerous publications, and the content creator of the YouTube channel, Chess & Tech.


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