Admiral Jobava Fires His Cannons In Vlissingen

Admiral Jobava Fires His Cannons In Vlissingen

| 14 | Chess Event Coverage

He was the top seed by a small margin, but won convincingly. On Saturday, GM Baadur Jobava of Georgia finished in clear first place at the Hogeschool Zeeland tournament in Vlissingen, half a point ahead of Dutch IM Jorden van Foreest.

It was already the 21st edition of the annual Dutch summer tournament in Vlissingen, a city in the southwestern Netherlands. As the birthplace of the famed Admiral Michiel de Ruyter, it played a role in the recent movie with the same title.

The film tells the story of De Ruyter, one of most skilled admirals in Dutch history, most famous for his role in the Anglo-Dutch Wars of the 17th century. Vlissingen remembers De Ruyter with a statue of the great man.

Michiel de Ruyter (1607-1676). | All photos by Ad Bruijns and Frans Peeters

There were no Anglo-Dutch wars in Vlissingen this year; among the 242 participants there was not a single player from the UK. Behind top seed GM Baadur Jobava (2664), the Dutch pride was defended by the second seed GM Loek van Wely — who wouldn't finish as the best Dutchman.

Other strong participants were GM Konstantin Landa of Russia, who won the tournament in 2011, and GM Michal Krasenkow of Poland, who had won the tournament four times already: in 2006, 2009, 2013 and 2014!

Jobava was not only the highest-rated player, but also the most skilled admiral in the battlefield. The Georgian GM started with three relatively easy wins against amateur players, then drew twice and finished the crucial part of the tournament with four more wins.

A key game was in round eight against Dutch GM Sipke Ernst, when he opened with one of his favorite sidelines: 1.b3. After many adventures, Jobava reached a double rook ending with an extra pawn, but Ernst kept on fighting. On move 55, Black missed an important detail.


Strong GMs kibitzing about the rook ending.

It was only with this game that Jobava became the sole leader of the tournament, with one round to go. Six players were chasing him with a half-point less.

One of them was GM Elshan Moradiabadi of Iran. He was given the task to give his best, with the white pieces, against Admiral Jobava. White's position looked promising after the opening, but Jobava held on with some interesting rook maneuvers.

On move 21 Moradiabadi decided to get his cannon ready, and maneuvered his queen to a1, creating a Qa1-Bc3 battery. Jobava countered and put a Qh8-Bg7 cannon in place. It was there when the Iranian missed a good chance.

The cannons were fired, a more or less equal ending appeared on the board, and then Moradiabadi lost the thread and Jobava showed his skills.


Moradiabadi vs Jobava, round nine, board one.

Second came 16-year-old IM Jorden van Foreest, a talented Dutch player who won the European U14 championship in October 2013. His rating is already above 2500, but so far he only scored a norm over eight games at the 2015 Aeroflot Open.

Both in Vlissingen and in the Open Dutch Championship in Dieren (held just before Vlissingen), Van Foreest's performance rating was above 2600, but he didn't meet the other norm requirements. His GM title will only be a matter of time.

Cannons along Vlissingen beach.

GM Loek van Wely started with 4.5/5 (one draw against a Dutch player called Miguoel Admiraal!) but then lost to Chinese IM Wan Yunguo, and he would lose a second game in the final round as well:


Baadur Jobava with his trophy.

2015 Hogeschool Zeeland | Final Standings (Top 25)

Rk. SNo Title Name FED Rtg Pts. TB1 TB2 Rp
1 1 GM Jobava Baadur GEO 2664 8 41,5 36,5 2745
2 9 IM Van Foreest Jorden NED 2519 7,5 41 35,25 2607
3 11 IM Wan Yunguo CHN 2472 7 43,5 32 2618
4 7 GM Werle Jan NED 2525 7 43 34,25 2590
5 3 GM Landa Konstantin RUS 2624 7 42,5 29,5 2653
6 4 GM Krasenkow Michal POL 2616 7 42,5 29,5 2573
7 19 FM Ten Hertog Hugo NED 2383 7 42 34,25 2567
8 14 IM Prasanna Raghuram Rao IND 2424 7 40 32,75 2442
9 5 GM Moradiabadi Elshan IRI 2587 6,5 43,5 28,5 2592
10 26 IM Palit Somak IND 2345 6,5 42 30,5 2384
11 21   Mu Ke CHN 2380 6,5 42 28,25 2507
12 8 GM Ikonnikov Vyacheslav RUS 2519 6,5 41,5 31 2415
13 15 IM Leenhouts Koen NED 2422 6,5 41 30,75 2403
14 12 GM Ankit R. Rajpara IND 2460 6,5 41 30 2471
15 28 IM De Jong Migchiel NED 2319 6,5 39,5 27,75 2385
16 10 IM Das Arghyadip IND 2485 6,5 39,5 26,5 2408
17 45 CM Heltzel Joost NED 2216 6,5 39 27,75 2378
18 23 FM Erwich Frank NED 2358 6,5 39 27,25 2384
19 32 FM Dardha Arben BEL 2297 6,5 38,5 25,5 2419
20 31   Brink Barry NED 2302 6,5 37,5 26 2377
21 25 FM Timmermans Mark NED 2352 6,5 37 26,25 2378
22 2 GM Van Wely Loek NED 2654 6 44,5 28,5 2518
23 6 GM Ernst Sipke NED 2544 6 44,5 28,25 2492
24 17 FM Admiraal Miguoel NED 2414 6 41 27,25 2455
25 18 IM Van Delft Merijn NED 2410 6 39,5 25,75 2358

(Full final standings here.)

Peter Doggers

Peter Doggers joined a chess club a month before turning 15 and still plays for it. He used to be an active tournament player and holds two IM norms.

Peter has a Master of Arts degree in Dutch Language & Literature. He briefly worked at New in Chess, then as a Dutch teacher and then in a project for improving safety and security in Amsterdam schools.

Between 2007 and 2013 Peter was running ChessVibes, a major source for chess news and videos acquired by in October 2013.

As our Director News & Events, Peter writes many of our news reports. In the summer of 2022, The Guardian’s Leonard Barden described him as “widely regarded as the world’s best chess journalist.”

In October, Peter's first book The Chess Revolution will be published!

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