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Only Chinese Player Li Chao Victorious in Reykjavik

  • PeterDoggers
  • on 3/15/14, 2:25 AM.

Li Chao won the Reykjavik Open on Wednesday. As the only player from China this year, Li started with a draw in the first round but scored an impressive 8 points in his final 9 games. He finished clear first with 8.5/10, half a point ahead of Robin van Kampen, Eric Hansen, Eduardas Rozentalis and Helgi Olafsson. 

The weather was particularly rough this year, and so more than ever it was a treat for the participants of the Reykjavik Open to be able to play their games in the spectacular Harpa concert & festival hall alongside the old harbor. The second half of the tournament (find our previous report here) saw many more interesting games, so let's jump right into it!

Erwin l'Ami and Robin van Kampen, who were tied for first place at half-time, were obviously paired against each other in round 6. Instead of going for a quick draw, the two Dutch GMs fought a tought game in which the older of the two was very close to a win. “I don't usually look at my games with the computer during tournaments, but I'm pretty sure I was winning somewhere,” said l'Ami.

Erwin l'Ami

In the same round Richard Rapport outplayed IM Pouya Idani of Iran and finished with a pretty checkmate. Can you see it?

Richard Rapport

March 9th, the birthday of Bobby Fischer and the day his grave was visited by Garry Kasparov, was a bad day for the Dutch players: both Van Kampen and l'Ami lost (and his wife Alina too). Although he would finish terribly with 0 out of 3, in this round Egypt's number one played a fine game:

Bassem Amin

Van Kampen was the victim of a pretty nice combination by top seed Arkadij Naiditsch. Can you find it?


In the eighth round Li Chao was back on board one, and he was intending to stay there! White was “h-filed” and didn't survive a shot from Alekhine's Gun:

Li Chao in the commentary room with Ingvar Johannesson and Fiona Steil-Antoni

In the same round two chess veterans faced each other: Walter Browne and Helgi Olafsson. It would be the start of an exellent finish for the local GM.

Walter Browne
Helgi Olafsson

To get an idea about the fighting spirit in Reykjavik, you only have to look at the results of round nine. The top nine boards all ended decisively! It's not easy to pick one, but obviously the encounter on the top board should be included here:

The top seed fell back to shared 10th place due to the following loss.

Van Kampen loves to play against a Closed Ruy Lopez, as long as it's not a Marshall. He didn't warn his opponent about that:

And so in the final round, on Wednesday, Li Chao was defending a half-point lead over Hansen, Van Kampen (room mates in Reykjavik) and Olafsson. The situation at the top didn't change much with three (fighting!) draws on boards 1-3. Eduardas Rozentalis joined the players in second place with the following win:

A truly heart-breaking game was the following - one of the very last still going on in an otherwise almost empty playing hall. The black player needed a win to score a GM norm, and he came so close...


Reykjavik Open 2014 | Final standings (Top 40)

Rk. SNo Naam FED RtgI Pts. TB1 TB2 TB3 Rp rtg+/-
1 2 GM Li Chao CHN 2700 8,5 65,5 53 55,5 2698 12,6
2 11 GM Van Kampen Robin NED 2603 8 66 53 51 2727 19,3
3 14 GM Hansen Eric CAN 2587 8 64,5 51,5 51 2695 16,7
4 10 GM Rozentalis Eduardas LTU 2623 8 63,5 50 50 2675 9,4
5 15 GM Olafsson Helgi ISL 2546 8 61 48,5 47,75 2598 9,5
6 8 GM L'Ami Erwin NED 2646 7,5 65,5 53 48 2637 3,5
7 26 GM Harika Dronavalli IND 2487 7,5 64 50,5 45,5 2623 19,9
8 18 GM Gretarsson Hjorvar Steinn ISL 2511 7,5 62 50,5 45,75 2588 12,4
9 16 GM Stefansson Hannes ISL 2541 7,5 59,5 48,5 45,25 2567 4,8
10 30 IM Panjwani Raja CAN 2460 7,5 57 45 40,75 2508 0
11 1 GM Naiditsch Arkadij GER 2706 7 66 54 44,75 2584 -8,5
12 4 GM Rapport Richard HUN 2681 7 65,5 52,5 42,25 2625 -1,6
13 13 GM Ramirez Alejandro USA 2599 7 63 51 42 2530 -4,1
14 3 GM Berkes Ferenc HUN 2687 7 63 49,5 42,25 2554 -10,2
15 6 GM Jones Gawain C B ENG 2651 7 62,5 50 41,75 2564 -5,7
16 34 GM Browne Walter S. USA 2444 7 62 50,5 39,5 2480 8,6
17 21 GM Danielsen Henrik ISL 2501 7 61 49 41,5 2486 0,9
18 9 GM Gajewski Grzegorz POL 2631 7 61 49 39,5 2465 -8,9
19 31 IM Hamitevici Vladimir MDA 2456 7 61 48,5 40,25 2456 3
20 12 GM Grandelius Nils SWE 2600 7 60,5 48 40,5 2499 -7,5
21 50 WGM Abrahamyan Tatev USA 2376 7 60 49 38,5 2454 20,4
22 17 GM Molner Mackenzie USA 2528 7 59,5 48,5 40,75 2466 -4,5
23 24 GM Colovic Aleksandar MKD 2493 7 58 47 40,25 2437 -3,5
24 25 GM Krush Irina USA 2490 7 57,5 45,5 40 2470 1,1
25 33 GM Djurhuus Rune NOR 2447 7 57 45 38 2410 -0,2
26 19 GM Pavlovic Milos SRB 2506 7 56 45 37,5 2418 -7,7
27 5 GM Amin Bassem Dr. EGY 2657 6,5 71 57,5 43,25 2603 -1,8
28 41 IM Bekker-Jensen Simon DEN 2418 6,5 66 53,5 41,25 2510 15,5
29 7 GM Kobalia Mikhail RUS 2646 6,5 66 53 40,75 2570 -4
30 72 FM Kvisvik Brede NOR 2257 6,5 62,5 51,5 38,75 2433 37
31 22 IM Idani Pouya IRI 2496 6,5 62,5 50,5 38,75 2440 -4,3
32 27 IM Elsness Frode NOR 2479 6,5 62,5 50 38,75 2462 1,2
33 51 FM Cawdery Daniel RSA 2362 6,5 62 50,5 36,5 2432 21,8
34 37 GM Thorhallsson Throstur ISL 2435 6,5 61,5 50,5 38 2444 5,3
35 54 IM Gullaksen Eirik NOR 2359 6,5 60,5 49 37,25 2370 6,4
36 23 IM Urkedal Frode NOR 2495 6,5 60 48 37,5 2408 -7,6
37 44 FM Aravindh Chithambaram Vr. IND 2395 6,5 60 48 35,5 2444 9,3
38 29 GM Galego Luis POR 2463 6,5 59,5 46 37 2410 -3,5
39 57 FM Antal Tibor Kende HUN 2325 6,5 58,5 47,5 35 2399 16,5
40 32 IM Lie Espen NOR 2456 6,5 58,5 47 36,5 2391 -3,8

Full final standings here

The winner obviously immediately handed over the flowers to his girlfriend

No less than six players made international norms. The Egyptian Mohamed Ezat was the only one got get a GM norm. Five players made IM norms: the young Indian Chitambaram Vr. Aravindh, Tatev Abrahamyan, Daniel Cawdery, Brede Kvisvik and Lenka Ptácníková.

An IM norm for Aravindh Chithambaram...
and the same success for Tatev Abrahamyan

Previous report

Tension Rising at Reykjavik Open, Dutch Duo in the Lead

3740 reads 8 comments
4 votes

Comments


  • 7 months ago

    shepi13

    Super tactics - white is clearly winning after 66. Ke3, for example Kg3 Rxg5+ or h3 Kf2 h2 Kg2, it's not even that difficult, much less drawn.

  • 7 months ago

    SuperTactics

    In the Stefansson- Bekker Jensen game, it should of been a draw. Why did Black resign?. Doesn't make sense, the h-pawn could of saved black. Anyway...

  • 7 months ago

    bobbymac310

    Nice tournamet to follow and great coverage from Chess.com. I enjoyed the problems as well.

  • 7 months ago

    SickCool

    how much was the winnings?

  • 7 months ago

    superchessplayerok3

    Li Chao current rating now (FIDE) - 2709.6. Nice, for China! :D

  • 7 months ago

    ErwinSachs

    1 of the best tourneys of the year and good coverage here.....

  • 7 months ago

    ExchangeMaster

    That game of Eric Hansen and Naiditch is just insane .Meanwhile i never new Tatev was that beautiful

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