The Bilbao Masters Final 2016

For this year’s Bilbao Masters, Wesley So is the defending champion, when he defeated Anish Giri in blitz playoff last year.

The Bilbao Chess press release:

The Final completes its competitive line-up, the strongest in recent years, with So, the winner of last year’s tournament, Nakamura and Giri, who are among the top ten of the international ranking and the 16-year-old Chinese player Yi Wei, the sport’s emerging world star.

The tournament, which has been recognised as one of the most prestigious in the world, will take place between 13 and 23 July at the Campos Elíseos Theatre, alongside the Villa de Bilbao, one of the most compelling Chess Opens of the year in which 140 players will compete.

This year’s edition of Bilbao Masters has truly gone more exciting, because on top of the familiar rivalry between Wesley So and Anish Giri, the organizers are bringing us a treat with the preview of this year’s World Championship match between Magnus Carlsen and Sergey Karjakin.

Chess Beauty: Alexandra Botez

Katherine Eisenbrand writes in Standford’s Pulse MagazineYou Just Got Pawned:

ALEXANDRA BOTEZ IS among Canada’s best female chess players, speaks five languages, attends Stanford, and on top of all that she’s trending on Reddit, 9GAG, Imgur, and Tumblr. It also seems like no other “Alexandra Botez” exists in the world, because sixteen search pages later the headlines still read “Botez, Canada’s Best, Most Accomplished, Most Beautiful, Most Amazingly Talented Chess Players.” I’m paraphrasing, but you get the gist.

At the current ELO rating of 2092, I think she’s still far from what she is being described as The Most Amazingly Talented Chess Player.

Who will win the 2016 World Chess Championship?

The World Championship is fast approaching. It’s time to put it to a vote. Who’s your favorite to win the 2016 World Chess Championship?

Cast your vote below now:

Chess Hustler meets a grandmaster

A New-Yorker’s hustling, trash-talking, and cheating way of playing chess apparently didn’t work against a grandmaster.

Watch the video below to see how it went:

GM Maurice Ashley on his note in the Youtube page:

APECC Executive Chess Tournament — June 2016

Ayala-Paseo Executive Chess Club (APECC) held a tournament last week, June 11, 2016, dubbed as the APECC Non-Master Executive Chess Tournament at the Philippine Navy Officers Clubhouse in Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. It was a rated tournament with 35 participants and 6-Round Rapid Swiss system.

The tournament director was Mr. Roland Roselada, APECC President, and chief arbiter was FIDE National Arbiter Alfredo Chay.

Final ranking follows:

Vassily Ivanchuk is 7-time Capablanca Memorial champion

Chessbase reports:

The Capablanca Memorial is a tournament with a long tradition. The first of these events to honor the Cuban Champion was played in 1962, this year saw the 51st edition. Six of the previous 50 tournaments were won by Vassily Ivanchuk. This year he won for the seventh time. With four wins and six draws Ivanchuk scored 7.0/10 and was one point ahead of his closest rival.

Two things:

  1. Jose Raul Capablanca was that great chess player and champion that he deserved an annual chess tournament named after him — and long-running at that.
  2. Vassily Ivanchuk, having won the tournament 7 times, speaks volumes about his age. 😀

Photo credit: gettyimages

Grand Chess Tour 2016 Standings — after Paris and Leuven

Carlsen Wins Grand Chess Tour Leuven

After winning the rapid rounds with an impressive 4/4 performance on Day 2 of the tournament, World Champion Magnus Carlsen even cemented his dominance with an 11/18 performance in the blitz rounds.

leuven-blitz-2016-final-crosstable

Thus, making him the runaway winner of the combined rapid and blitz games that comprise the whole of the Grand Chess Tour 2016 — Your Next Move — Leuven, Belgium. Final combined results follow:

combined-results-leuven-2016-final

Wesley So makes it to the 2nd place at the conclusion of this Leuven leg. He is followed, this time closely behind, by Levon Aronian and Viswanathan Anand, by half a point each.

Wesley So in great shape so far in Grand Chess Tour 2016

Wesley So finished the first half of the blitz rounds of Your Next Move — Grand Chess Tour 2016 at second place with 5 points out of 9, although, tied with Magnus Carlsen, Vladimir Kramnik, and Hikaru Nakamura. Levon Aronian is slightly ahead at 5.5 points.

Crosstable after nine rounds of blitz games:

gct-your-next-move-2016-blitz-cross

With three-quarters through the tournament, Carlsen is still ahead in the combined score (rapid scores are multiplied by two):

Leuven Rapid Day 2: An Impressive 4/4 Performance by Carlsen

The rapid rounds are over for the Grand Chess Tour 2016: Your Next Move in Leuven, Belgium. A great performance was posted by the world champion, Magnus Carlsen, as he won all of his 4 games against three of the former world champions: Veselin Topalov, Viswanathan Anand, and Vladimir Kramnik, plus Anish Giri. In the process, he clinched the top spot with 18 rounds of blitz games to go in the tournament.

Chessbase:

If day one of the rapid games in Leuven was full of surprises, day two was no less so, though thankfully not due to record numbers of blunders. Vishy Anand started the day with a win, but after two losses lost the lead as he was caught up by Wesley So. In the meantime, Magnus Carlsen showed he was back and managed to win the rapid phase after a fabulous 4/4.

The final crosstable of the rapid games follows:

Blunderfest in Leuven

Chess.com describes the first day of the rapid games in Your Next Move, Grand Chess Tour 2016, in Leuven, Belgium, as bluderfest:

Viswanathan Anand leads the Your Next Move Grand Chess Tour after five rounds of rapid chess. The first day of rapid saw a number of huge blunders that made the playing hall seem haunted.

That’s actually what makes the tournament more exciting and attract more spectators in the process. I guess that’s the purpose of rapid games, to bring out the human-nature in the world’s top grandmasters.

Remember, you can catch the rest of the rapid games in GCT Leuven 2016 LIVE here.

Photo credit: Grand Chess Tour.