2009 Holiday Chess Roundup

2009 Holiday Chess Roundup

| 6 | Chess Event Coverage

Alexander_Grischuk.jpgChristmas and New Year are a traditionally busy time for chess events, and 2009 was no different as previewed here.

So before we kick off 2010 in earnest, here is a brief round-up of results you may have missed over the holiday season.

Russian Championships

Alexander Grischuk (pictured) rounded off a good year by winning the Russian Championships with a score of 6.5/9, half a point ahead of top seed and defending champion, Peter Svidler.

Grischuk also won Linares in 2009, and is #15 on the latest official rating list. Grischuk's crucial win against Jakovenko (who knocked him out of the World Cup) in round eight helped seal the title.

The women's title went to Alisa Galliamova, who scored an impressive 7.5/9 on her comeback after a lengthy absence after having a baby.  Nadezhda Kosintseva finished half a point behind to take second place in this exciting event where only 20% of the games ended in draws.

Reggio Emilia

Gata Kamsky took first prize at Reggio Emilia, beating Zoltan Almasi in a terrific last round game to leave both players tied on 6.5/9, with Kamsky therefore winning by virtue of a better tie-break score.  Italian star Fabiano Caruana finished a point behind on 5.5/9 and will be playing next in the A Group at Corus, starting on 15 January.

European Rapid Championships

Surprise 2009 World Cup semi-finalist Vladimir Malakhov continued his good form to take the gold medal at the European Rapid Championships in Poland with a score of 11.5/13.  Malakhov sealed victory in this strong event by beating Alexei Shirov with black in the final round.  Vassily Ivanchuk also performed well, finishing in second place with 11/13 to earn a silver medal.

Hastings Masters Tournament

The Masters event at the traditional Hastings tournament ended in a four-way tie for first place between British Champion David Howell, Mark Hebden, Andrei Istratescu and Romain Edouard.  Howell had to earn his share of the spoils with a last round win with the black pieces.


The first big tournament of 2010 is the usual season opener at the seaside resort of Wijk Aan Zee in the Netherlands, better known simply as "Corus" after it's longstanding sponsor.  Look out for a preview soon, with the event starting on 15 January.

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