Ivanchuk Wins Edmonton International With 8.0/9 Score
On Sunday Vassily Ivanchuk of Ukraine won the Edmonton International in Canada with the excellent score of 8.0/9. The only other 2700 player in the field, Wesley So of the Philippines, came second with 7.5 points while Sam Shankland (USA) and Anton Kovalyov (Canada) finished shared third with 5.5 points.
In a tournament where there are only three other 2600+ GMs, and the lowest rated player has an Elo of 2168, it's not easy for a super GM to win rating points. Vassily Ivanchuk and Wesley So, the two top seeds in this year's Edmonton International, managed to do so anyway.
As we saw in the previous report, their mutual game ended in a draw, with Ivanchuk having the better chances as Black. In the other eight games, Ivanchuk drew one more game, with Irina Krush, and won the other seven. His excellent final score of 8.0/9 was good for a 2814 performance, and 9 Elo points.
Ivanchuk with arbiter Ali Razzaq
One of Ivanchuk's compatriots and team member next month in Tromsø tweeted:
Very glad to see such a confident victory of Vasyl in Edmonton! Good for him and for our team in Olympiad!— Pavel Eljanov ( @Eljanov) June 30, 2014
So did only slightly worse, as he drew two more games: also with Krush, and with Vladimir Pechenkin. The Pinoy grandmaster, who is trying to change federations to the U.S., won a modest 3 Elo points. He posted on Facebook:
U.S. Women's Champion Irina Krush probably isn't too satisfied with her “minus one” score (and a loss of 5 rating points), but holding both Ivanchuk & So to a draw is nothing to be ashamed of! Here are both games - in the first she defended a slightly worse ending, and in the second she couldn't win a slightly better ending.
Back to Ivanchuk, who won his last three games. How does a 2700 win against a player with almost 600 rating points less, who tries his luck with the Petroff? Here's how:
The next day the Ukrainian played the Volga Gambit, and it looks like he kind of tricked his opponent with his move order. As so often in this opening it was more or less over as soon as Black won back the gambit pawn.
In the last round Ivanchuk's victim was Sam Shankland. White had some nice tactics thanks to that pawn on h6:
Edmonton International 2014 | Final Standings