Few Upsets, Many Draws On Baku World Cup Day 1

Few Upsets, Many Draws On Baku World Cup Day 1

| 44 | Chess Event Coverage

The first day of the FIDE World Cup in Baku saw few big upsets; only two 2700 players started with losses. However, quite a few lower-rated players held their stronger opponents to a draw.

All photos courtesy of FIDE.

The first round of the World Cup saw no irregularities. All participants had arrived in time, and unlike the first day of the 2013 World Cup, which started with a big delay because players couldn't get through security in time, in Baku the games started right on time.

The pairings followed the system 1 vs 128, 2 vs 127 etc. so inevitably some of the top favorites had an easy day. One of the quickest winners was one of the 2800 participants, GM Fabiano Caruana. FM Amir Zaibi of Tunesia didn't stand a chance:


And easy day for Caruana (here with Lawrence Trent and Rustam Kasimdzhanov).

Another relatively quick win was scored by GM Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, who defeated former world youth champion GM Idani Pouya of Iran. It was a pretty game (especially the end!) so GM Dejan Bojkov decided to pick this one to annotate:



That was a nice final move by Shakhriyar Mamedyarov!

Yesterday at the technical meeting GM Peter Leko asked whether any anti-draw are rules in effect. (The answer was no.) With the reputation of someone who draws a lot, he got an applause for this question Laughing but the next day he won a nice game:


But not everyone can look back at his first game with a smile. World number-24 GM Leinier Dominguez (2732) lost to GM Federico Perez Ponsa (2563) in what was the biggest upset of the day.

The Argentinian grandmaster held his own in a pretty sharp game where Dominguez avoided a repetition of moves at the end (but the position would still be lost):



A bad start for Cuban GM Leinier Dominguez.

The other 2700 player who needs a win tomorrow is GM Ni Hua (2704). The Chinese player went down against GM Sandro Mareco (2599).

And there were more small upsets. Two of them involved American players: GM Gata Kamsky (2681), the winner of the 2007 World Cup, lost as White to GM Hrant Melkumyan (2622) and GM Ray Robson (2680) lost to GM Yuri Vovk (2628) of Ukraine.

That game involved arguably the most spectacular move of the first day — played after a pretty spectacular move by Robson:


Here are the other losses by higher-rated players:

  • Ivan Saric (2678) lost to Bassem Amin (2636)
  • Sanan Sjugirov (2664) lost to S. Sethuraman (2640)
  • Gadir Guseinov (2634) beat Maxim Matlakov (2689)
  • Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son (2634) beat Robert Kempinski (2637)
  • Wen Yang beat Igor Kovalenko (2699)
  • Lu Shanglei (2599) beat Alexander Moiseenko (2692)

Women's World Champion Mariya Muzychuk (2528) comfortably held Michael Adams (2742) to a draw from the black side of an Open Ruy Lopez. Ilia Iljiushenko (2491) drew Dmitry Jakovenko (2748), Ziaur Rahman (2500) drew Evgeny Tomashevsky (2758), and Yusup Atabayev (2428) drew Alexander Grischuk (2771).

An excellent start for Mariya Muzychuk.

Sam Sevian (2556) held Teimour Radjabov (2738) to a draw. Let's include that game, because it shows the mature chess Sevian is playing at the age of 14. He just defended and defended, and didn't break, even though he was a pawn down for so long. Very impressive.

For IM Arthur Ssegwanyi (2357) of Uganda the World Cup is already a success after drawing one of the favorites, GM Anish Giri (2793). In the longest game of the round, also here the underdog was a pawn down early on but saved the draw on move 158!


2015 World Cup | Round 1.1 Results

# White Result Black # White Result Black
1 Topalov 1-0 Adu 33 Wang 1-0 Perunovic
2 Phiri 0-1 Nakamura 34 Zhao 1/2 Nepomniachtchi
3 Caruana 1-0 Zaibi 35 Kasimdzhanov 1/2 Kovalyov
4 Ssegwanyi 1/2 Giri 36 Wen 1-0 Kovalenko
5 So 1-0 Maghsoodloo 37 Le 1/2 Durarbayli
6 Cori 0-1 Kramnik 38 Solak 0-1 Korobov
7 Grischuk 1/2 Atabayev 39 Cheparinov 1/2 Ipatov
8 Krnan 0-1 Ding 40 Guseinov 1-0 Matlakov
9 Aronian 1-0 Wiedenkeller 41 Robson 0-1 Vovk
10 Iljiushenok 1/2 Jakovenko 42 Iturrizaga 1/2 Rodshtein
11 Karjakin 1-0 Espinosa 43 Lysyj 1/2 Lupulescu
12 Rahman 1/2 Tomashevsky 44 Bartel 1/2 Sargissian
13 Gelfand 1/2 Henriquez 45 Artemiev 1-0 Ganguly
14 Illingworth 0-1 Harikrishna 46 Leitao 1/2 Hou
15 Adams 1/2 Muzychuk 47 Kamsky 0-1 Melkumyan
16 Can 0-1 Svidler 48 Edouard 0-1 Smirin
17 Radjabov 1/2 Sevian 49 Nisipeanu 1-0 Anton
18 Perez 1-0 Dominguez 50 Akobian 1/2 Laznicka
19 Mamedyarov 1-0 Idani 51 Sjugirov 0-1 Sethuraman
20 Lalith 1/2 Wojtaszek 52 Fier 1/2 Granda
21 Vachier-Lagrave 1-0 Ortiz 53 Nguyen 1-0 Kempinski
22 Iordachescu 0-1 Yu 54 Volokitin 1/2 Onischuk
23 Ivanchuk 1-0 Adly 55 Saric 0-1 Amin
24 Salem 0-1 Wei 56 Khismatullin 0-1 Areshchenko
25 Navara 1/2 Nabaty 57 Inarkiev 1/2 Quesada
26 Jumabayev 0-1 Eljanov 58 Adhiban 1/2 Fedoseev
27 Andreikin 1-0 Zhou 59 Bruzon 1/2 Vidit
28 Ter-Sahakyan 1/2 Vitiugov 60 Safarli 1/2 Balogh
29 Leko 1-0 Goganov 61 Motylev 1/2 Grachev
30 Mareco 1-0 Ni 62 Mamedov 1-0 Najer
31 Fressinet 1/2 Brkic 63 Shankland 1-0 Popov
32 Lu 1-0 Moiseenko 64 Zhigalko 1/2 Bukavshin

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.

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