Danielian, Hoang, Paehtz, Zhukova Eliminated In Women's World Championship Round 1

Danielian, Hoang, Paehtz, Zhukova Eliminated In Women's World Championship Round 1

| 12 | Chess Event Coverage

GMs Elina Danielian, Hoang Thanh Trang, Natalia Zhukova and IM Elisabeth Paehtz were eliminated in the first round of the Women's World Championship in Sochi, Russia.

The tournament, a 64-player knockout, started on Tuesday with the first game of the first round. Each round consists of two classical games and, if necessary, a playoff on the third day. The final match consists of four games.

The big upset on the first day was GM Mariya Muzychuk's loss to Yuan Yuanling. She outplayed her opponent, but couldn't find the decisive blow:

A surprising win for Yuan Yuanling. | Photo Eteri Kublashvili.

Another surprise was former world championship contender IM Alisa Galliamova going down against Argentina's number one IM Carolina Lujan. Going down under a lot of pins, that was!

Carolina Lujan. | Photo Boris Dolmatovsky.

The following win was a small upset too. Scotland's number one GM Ketevan Arakhamia-Grant defeated Hungary's number two GM Hoang Thanh Trang (and would hold the second to a draw):

GM Alexandra Kosteniuk, one of the ex-world champions in Sochi, used some nice tactics in her game with IM Irina Berezina of Australia. Here it is as a puzzle for you to solve.

In this position White played 20.Nxe4! and now 20...Qxe4 is impossible because of 21.Qc3+. Black played 20...Ra7, to cover the g7-square with the rook. But that didn't help; White continued energetically with 21.f4! when 21...Qxf4 22.Qxf4 Rxf4 23.Rd8+ was game over because of checkmate on g8. But why couldn't Black take the knight? 

Nice tactics by Alexandra Kosteniuk. | Photo Eteri Kublashvili.

GM Irina Krush got to show her endgame technique against IM Sophie Milliet:

Irina Krush vs Sophie Milliet. | Photo Eteri Kublashvili.

After the second day of play, 21 of the 32 matches were decided. GM Elina Danielian of Armenia was the first top player to get eliminated; after drawing her first game with WGM Yaniet Marrero Lopez of Cuba, she lost as Black:

Elina Danielian eliminated. | Photo Eteri Kublashvili.

GM Natalia Zhukova and IM Inna Gaponenko, two friends and team members for Ukraine, were paired against each other. The first game ended in a draw, and the second was won by the lower rated of the two:

And so 22 players entered the playing hall on Thursday for a thrilling playoff. On this day the situation situation is simple: either you stay at least two more days, or you go home! (Although some players tend to stay longer in these tournaments to assist compatriots.)

The system for the playoff is two rapid games (25 minutes + 10 seconds per move), if necessary two quicker games (10 minutes + 10 seconds per move), if necessary two blitz games (5 minutes + 3 seconds per move), and if the score is still equal, an Armageddon game.

In another match between two players from the same country was decided on the third day. After scoring a win each in the classical games, IM Lela Javakhishvili eliminated GM Anish Giri's girlfriend IM Sopiko Guramishvili

IM Elisabeth Paehtz was eliminated by another Georgian: IM Meri Arabidze. After two draws in the classical part and two draws in the rapid games, Arabidze won both 10-minute (+10 seconds increment) games.

Liz Paehtz: eliminated, but staying in Sochi to do commentary. | Photo Eteri Kublashvili.

When the pressure is high, big mistakes are made. The match between GM Monika Socko and IM Deimante Daulyte saw the following dramatic moment. The lower-rated player had won the first rapid game, and had a mate-in-one on the board in the second, but blundered her queen instead! 

Deimante lost the two next games and got eliminated. The horror!

Two matches went all the way to an Armageddon game: WGM Aleksandra Goryachkina of Russia vs IM Lilit Mkrtchian of Armenia, and WGM Mary Ann Gomes of India vs GM Tatiana Kosintseva of Russia.

In such a game White has five minutes, Black has four minutes, and a 3-second increment per move starts after the move 61. Black only needs a draw to go through. Goryachkina and Kosintseva went through, the latter by flagging her opponent in a lost position.

Tatiana Kosintseva: through after seven games. | Photo Eteri Kublashvili.

2015 Women's World Championship | Round 1 Results

Name vs Name Score Playoff
Koneru, Humpy (IND) - Moaataz, Ayah (EGY) 2-0
Wafa, Shrook (EGY) - Ju, Wenjun (CHN) 0-2
Muzychuk, Anna (UKR) - Mezioud, Amina (ALG) 1.5-0.5
Shamima, Akter Liza (BAN) - Cmilyte, Viktorija (LTU) 0-2
Kosteniuk, Alexandra (RUS) - Berezina, Irina (AUS) 2-0
Baginskaite, Camilla (USA) - Gunina, Valentina (RUS) 0-2
Zhao, Xue (CHN) - Zuriel, Marisa (ARG) 1-1 2-0
Yuan, Yuanling (CAN) - Muzychuk, Mariya (UKR) 1-1 0.5-1.5
Stefanova, Antoaneta (BUL) - Nguyen, Thi Than An (VIE) 1.5-0.5
Ozturk, Kubra (TUR) - Khotenashvili, Bela (GEO) 0.5-1.5
Cramling, Pia (SWE) - Hejazipour, Mitra (IRI) 2-0
Abrahamyan, Tatev (USA) - Harika, Dronavalli (IND) 0-2
Danielian, Elina (ARM) - Marrero Lopez, Yaniet (CUB) 0.5-1.5
Nakhbayeva, Guliskhan (KAZ) - Tan, Zhongyi (CHN) 0.5-1.5
Ushenina, Anna (UKR) - Zhang, Xiaowen (CHN) 1.5-0.5
Lujan, Carolina (ARG) - Galliamova, Alisa (RUS) 1-1 1.5-2.5
Kosintseva, Tatiana (RUS) - Gomes, Mary Ann (IND) 1-1 4-3
Wang, Jue (CHN) - Sebag, Marie (FRA) 0.5-1.5
Javakhishvil,i Lela (GEO) - Guramishvili, Sopiko (GEO) 1-1 2.5-1.5
Arabidze, Meri (GEO) - Paehtz, Elisabeth (GER) 1-1 3-1
Krush, Irina (USA) - Milliet, Sophie (FRA) 1.5-0.5
Arakhamia-Grant, Ketevan (SCO) - Hoang, Thanh Trang (HUN) 1.5-0.5
Huang, Qian (CHN) - Kovanova, Baira (RUS) 1-1 1.5-0.5
Gaponenko, Inna (UKR) - Zhukova, Natalia (UKR) 1.5-0.5
Socko, Monika (POL) - Daulyte, Deimante (LTU) 1-1 3-1
Sukandar, Irine Kharisma (INA) - Melia, Salome (GEO) 1-1 0-2
Girya, Olga (RUS) - Atalik, Ekaterina (TUR) 2-0
Kashlinskaya, Alina (RUS) - Shen, Yang (CHN) 1-1 0.5-1.5
Khurtsidze, Nino (GEO) - Kovalevskaya, Ekaterina (RUS) 0.5-1.5
Mkrtchian, Lilit (ARM) - Goryachkina, Aleksandra (RUS) 1-1 3-4
Pogonina, Natalija (RUS) - Guo, Qi (CHN) 1.5-0.5
Cori T., Deysi (PER) - Lei, Tingjie (CHN) 0-2

The Women's World Championship takes place March 17-April 7 in Sochi, Russia. World Champion GM Hou Yifan is not defending her title; she takes part in the Hawaii Chess Festival instead.

The total prize fund of the championship is U.S. $450,000. Every player gets $3,750, those who make it to round two get $5,500, for round three it is $8,000, round four $12,000, round five (semifinals) $20,000, the silver medalist $30,000, and the winner $60,000.

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