Zurich best game poll + it was Sepp Blatter

by Nisha Mohota
2/17/2016 – The final day of in Zurich saw three games in the regular "new classic" time controls , and once again you can vote for the Game of the Day and win a valuable prize: a ChessBase DVD signed by Anand, Kramnik or Shirov immediately after the end of each round. Our add-on quiz question came in the form of a picture which showed the former Football Association President Sepp Blatter, who paid the event a surprise visit.

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From 12 to 15 February 2016 world chess elite players were in Zurich, for the fifth edition of the Zurich Chess Challenge at the Hotel Savoy Baur en Ville. It was organized by the oldest chess club in the world, the Schachgesellschaft Zürich, and sponsored by Oleg Skvortsov, owner of the International Gemological Laboratories in Moscow, who was experimenting with a new classical time control: 40 minutes per game with a 10 second increment for each move. In addition an exhibition match with the new time controls between Boris Gelfand and Alexander Morozevich was played on the first day.

The final round took place on Monday at 3 p.m., followed by a blitz tournament and the closing ceremony at 6 p.m. There are two points for a win and one point for a draw in new classical chess, and one point for a victory and 0.5 points for a draw in the blitz.

Vote for the Game of the Day round three

Viswanathan Anand-Vladimir Kramnik (draw)
This was yet another Anti-Berlin in the tournament. It was Kramnik’s turn to equalise despite the doubled pawns and he did it with reasonable ease. Pieces kept disappearing soon from the board and a draw was agreed upon in a rook ending.

Anish Giri-Alexei Shirov (draw)
Giri adopted the Reti Opening, most likely because of its slow nature, which could be a good idea against Shirov’s attacking style. However, Alexei showed that he was also capable of playing solid chess, if the position so demanded. Giri’s very slight edge was soon neutralised and a draw was agreed after 31 moves.

Levon Aronian-Hikaru Nakamura (0-1)
Both the players blitzed out the first few moves with extreme ease in a Queen’s Gambit Declined. Black was rock solid in a roughly level game when Aronian decided to sacrifice a pawn on move 21, which did not give him any compensation. Nakamura soon won a second pawn and wrapped up the game in 39 moves. An important victory with the black pieces for the American GM as it allowed him to join Anand at the top.

Replay all the games round five

Select games from the dropdown menu above the board

Analysis of the three final games of round five and of the games of the
Blitz Tournament can be found in this report by GM Alejandro Ramirez.

Hikaru Nakamura in the final press conference with Yannick Pelletier and Werner Hug

After the event Anand chatted with Manjul Bhargava, Professor of Mathematics at Princeton University,
who is known (well, world famous actually) for his contributions to number theory


The games are being broadcast live on the official web site and on the chess server Playchess.com. If you are not a member you can download a free Playchess client there and get immediate access. You can also use ChessBase 13 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs.

Vote for the best game of Day three

Vote for the Game of Day two

This is the prize you can win if you participate in the poll for the best games of each day – a DVD produced for ChessBase by top players, signed immediately after the round.

In order to vote for the game of the day and possibly win a prize you need to have a ChessBase Account. You can vote only once – after you cast your vote you will see how other readers have voted.

The prize will be awarded by randomly selecting a reader who has participated. Whether this reader voted for the game that ultimately won is irrelevant, so you can vote for the game you personally liked the best – and not for the one you think most people will choose.

You are welcome to post your opinion in the feedback section at the bottom of this page.


Vote for the Game of the Day in previous rounds


A quick quzz question – not part of any competition but open to discussion in our comments section below:

Is there anything or anyone remarkable in this pictures, shot by Michael Negele?
The solution will be posted here tomorrow – or confirmed, if enought readers guess right.


A couple of readers got it right: suddenly, in the front row, you could spot Joseph "Sepp" Blatter, the Swiss football administrator who led FIFA (Fédération Internationale de Football Association) as it's eighth president since 1998, but was suspended last October after accusations of corruption and financial mismanagement were leveled against him. In the above picture Blatter is on the right, together with Linda Barras, in conversation with the tournament sponsor Oleg Skvortsov.

Nisha Mohota became India’s youngest WIM in 1995 and India’s fourth WGM in 2003. Since February 2011 she has been a full IM – her highest ever Elo rating was 2416. She has represented India in 25 countries, playing for India in the 2004, 2008 and 2010 Olympiads. Her first love, chess, helps her continue her other passion: writing, photography and travelling.


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