Cramling eliminated in first round Women World Championship

| 0 | Chess Event Coverage
Coming up: Women World ChampionshipPia Cramling leaves Antakya, Turkey after the first round of the Women's World Championship. The Swedish top player lost 0.5-1.5 to local hero Betul Cemre Yildiz. After three days of play, 32 players are left to fight in round 2 which starts today.

Cramling loses to Yildiz in Antakya

General info

The 2010 Women's World Championship, organized by the Turkish Chess Federation, takes place December 2-25 in Antakya, Hatay, Turkey. The format is a knock-out competition with five rounds of matches, comprising two games per round, with the winners progressing to the next round. The 6th and final round will be played over four games and the winner will be declared Women’s World Champion. More info here.

Round 1

It was clearly the biggest upset in the first round of the Women's World Championship: world number 9 Pia Cramling from Sweden losing 0.5-1.5 to 300 points lower rated Betul Cemre Yildiz from Turkey. It was quite a dramatic affair, since after a draw in the first game Cramling had a fine position in the second but then she didn't make her 40th move in time (she 'forgot to make 40th move', as the official website puts it). Update: apparently she told Evgeny Surov that she was convinced she had already made forty moves. "I already knew I was going to take the pawn on a7, when I was suddenly approached by the referee," said Cramling.

So far Yildiz is known mainly for her participation in the Women Grand Prixs, where as a 2200 player obviously she didn't score many points. Finally Yildiz manages to make the headlines with a positive result, while Sweden's number one can pack her bags.

There weren't many of those upsets in this first round, and especially not at the top boards. The pairings had 1-64, 2-63, 3-62 etcetera, which clearly favours the strongest players. Other examples of lower rated players going through were Zhang Xiaowen (2339) beating Lilit Mkrtchian (2479), Baira Kovanova (2380) beating Natalija Pogonina (2472), Tatiana Shadrina (2384) beating Elina Danielian (2466) and Marina Romanko (2414) beating Natalia Zhukova (2447).

Playing hall Women World Championship

Two matches have not been played: Iweta Rajlich-Jovanka Houska and Arianne Caoili-Ju Wenjun. From the latter we know that Caoili didn't have time to play chess in this period, but strangely enough she was paired anyway - we can only assume that a cancellation letter wasn't received in time. About Rajlich the official website reports that she was traveling with her husband and new-born kid, but was stopped by the weather conditions.

The Warsaw airport was closed, so the whole Polish delegation went to close by [sic] Ukrainian city Lvov to fly from there, but this was not possible either. There was made a decision to travel to Kiev, but Rajlich family decided that it would be a too difficult journey for the kid, so they went back and sent apology letter to FIDE.

And so English player Jovanka Houska, who is assisted by GM Stuart Conquest in Antakya, was lucky to qualifty for the second round without playing.

Below are the games of the first round - we lack the time to make a selection (and in fact you might enjoy IMs and GMs beating weaker players - usually these encounters are quite instructive). But... don't miss Kovanova-Pogonina! Pairings round 2 here.

Game viewer

Game viewer by ChessTempo

Women's World Championship 2010 | Round 1 results
Women's World Championship 2010 | Round 1 results

Photos © Turkish Chess Federation


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