4-Way Tie At Rilton Cup With 3 Rounds To Go

4-Way Tie At Rilton Cup With 3 Rounds To Go

PeterDoggers
PeterDoggers
Jan 2, 2015, 3:39 PM |
3 | Chess Event Coverage

Four players are tied for first place at the Rilton Cup with three rounds to go: GM Michal Krasenkow, GM Nils Grandelius, GM Michael Roiz and GM Tiger Hillarp Persson.

The Rilton Cup is named after Tore Rilton, who was born July 18, 1904 in Gothenburg and died September 7, 1983.

Rilton, a doctor and a chess lover, was childless and from his assets 8 million Swedish kronor (more than 5 million after tax) were put in the newly founded Rilton Foundation, from which the tournament is supported every year.

This year the tournament takes place December 27, 2014-January 5, 2015, at the Clarion Hotel in Stockholm, Sweden.

Besides several other groups, the strong Rilton Cup group (for players above 2200!) is a 9-round Swiss. 

The first prize is 20,000 Swedish kronor (2100 Euro, $2530). The top seeds are GM Ilia Smirin (2644),2014 winner GM Jon Ludvig Hammer (2640), GM Evgeny Romanov (2638), GM Aleksey Goganov (2615) and 2013 winner GM Michael Krasenkow (2614).

With three rounds to go, anything is possible. Four players are on five points: GM Michal Krasenkow, GM Nils Grandelius, GM Michael Roiz and GM Tiger Hillarp Persson. Trailing by half a point are GM Jon Ludvig Hammer, FM Martin Lokander, GM Evgeny Romanov and GM Hans Tikkanen.

In the first round there were few upsets on the top boards; only Goganov dropped a half-point against Drazen Dragicevic (2289). However, no fewer than three Swedish GMs started with a loss against lower-rated players!

On board 12, GM Hans Tikkanen somehow got completely outplayed by Kaj Engstrom (2261):

An excellent game by Engstrom. | Photo Lars OA Hedlund.

Another local hero suffered the same fate! GM Erik Blomqvist lost to Vasilios Sarandos (2245), although this game wasn't so one-sided. White was in fact winning before made life difficult for himself and then blundered:

A bit of luck for Vasilios Sarandos. | Photo Lars OA Hedlund.

GM Pia Cramling, world #13 among the women, also started with a loss. Her game with Tom Rydstrom (2243) must have ended in a huge time scramble, and she probably lost on time:

Tom Rydstrom. | Photo Lars OA Hedlund.

In the second round, the 2600 GMs already faced 2400 opponents, and so there were a few draws at the top. For example, Ilya Smirin was held by Jonathan Westerberg (2411).

After four rounds only one player was left with a 100 percent score: Nils Grandelius. The 21-year-old Swedish GM, who also played well in Qatar in November, nicely refuted too risky play by GM Maxim Turov:

A nice, sacrificial win by Nils Grandelius. | Photo Lars OA Hedlund.

However, two days later (there was no round on the 31st) Grandelius was defeated by a much-inspired Michal Krasenkow in a reversed Queen's Gambit Accepted:

Great tactics from the winner of two years ago. | Photo Lars OA Hedlund. 

One very interesting participant is FM Yoshiharu Habu. The Japanese FM is more known as a shogi professional, but occasionally the 44-year-old plays a chess tournament.

Well, it seemed that he had stopped doing that after 2007, but last year he suddenly participated in the Krakow Open and this year he's active in Stockholm.

Habu's most famous chess game is the following gem from October 2005:

So far Habu hasn't scored that well: 3.0/6 with a 2208 performance rating. But he probably doesn't care much; in shogi he is one of the best players who ever lived.

According to his English Wikipedia page, he has “a winning percentage of 0.723” (...) “the all-time highest of any professional player to date.”

Yoshiharu Habu. | Photo Lars OA Hedlund. 

2014 Rilton Cup | Round 6 Standings (Top 21)

Rk. SNo Title Name FED Rtg Pts. TB1 TB2
1 5 GM Krasenkow Michal POL 2614 5 20,5 23
2 9 GM Grandelius Nils SWE 2581 5 19,5 22
3 6 GM Roiz Michael ISR 2592 5 19 21
4 13 GM Hillarp Persson Tiger SWE 2544 5 18,5 21
5 2 GM Hammer Jon Ludvig NOR 2640 4,5 21 24
6 35 FM Lokander Martin SWE 2365 4,5 19 20,5
7 3 GM Romanov Evgeny RUS 2638 4,5 17,5 20
8 1 GM Smirin Ilia ISR 2644 4,5 16,5 19
9 12 GM Tikkanen Hans SWE 2551 4,5 16 18
10 8 GM Turov Maxim RUS 2591 4 21 23,5
11 11 GM Ivanov Sergey RUS 2559 4 20 22,5
12 16 IM Urkedal Frode NOR 2517 4 19,5 22
13 36 FM Sagit Rauan SWE 2357 4 18 20
14 18 IM Smith Axel SWE 2479 4 18 18,5
15 10 GM Mikhalevski Victor ISR 2571 4 17,5 19,5
16-17 22 IM Hagen Andreas Skytte DEN 2430 4 16,5 18,5
16-17 24 IM Turova Irina RUS 2421 4 16,5 18,5
18 15 GM Cramling Pia SWE 2518 4 16 18
19 21 GM Åkesson Ralf SWE 2457 4 15,5 17
20 4 GM Goganov Aleksey RUS 2615 4 15 17
21 14 GM Blomqvist Erik SWE 2525 4 14,5 17
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