Kosintseva wins 3rd Women Grand Prix

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Kosintseva wins 3rd Women GPTatiana Kosintseva kept her 1.5 point lead in the last three rounds of the Women Grand Prix tournament in Nalchik. The Russian grandmaster won the tournament with a superb 9 out of 11 (2735 perfomance). Second came 16-year-old Hou Yifan from China.

The third FIDE Women Grand Prix tournament took place April 25 - May 8 in Nalchik, the capital of Kabardino-Balkaria. The participants were GM Humpy Koneru (2622, IND), GM Hou Yifan (2570, CHN), GM Tatiana Kosintseva (2524, RUS), GM Pia Cramling (2523, SWE), IM Lilit Mkrtchan (2503, ARM), IM Elina Danielian (2491, ARM), GM Zhao Xue (2490, CHN), GM Nana Dzagnidze (2479, GEO), GM Zhu Chen (2476, QAT), WGM Munguntuul Batkhuyag, (2428, MGL), WGM Baira Kovanova (2385, RUS) and WIM Betul Cemre Yildiz (2244, TUR).

In our previous report we saw that the youngest of the Kosintseva sisters, Tatiana, was doing very well. By then she had beaten Dzagnidze, Hou Yifan, Munguntuul, Kovanova and Danielian and drawn with Zhao Xue, Koneru and Yildiz.

In the last three rounds Kosintseva managed to stay unbeaten. After a draw with former World Champion Zhu Chen the Russian grandmaster beat Pia Cramling in a crucial game, since the Swedish number one was trailing by point. This meant Kosintseva had already won the tournament with a round to go, reaching 8/10 while Hou Yifan and Dzagnidze collected 6.5 points. This didn't stop her from beating Mkrtchian in the last round with the black pieces. It appears that the Sofia rule isn't even an issue at women's tournaments, or is it?

And so Kosintseva won this third Women GP convincingly, though perhaps it was not as easy as it looked. At the final press conference she said: "As for the toughest [game], I think it’s yesterday’s game against Cramling: first of all, it was very long, and, secondly, it was extremely important. I wanted to make proper use of white pieces and interrupt my draw series. I was particularly focused on it. It wasn’t the only tough game, though. The game against Yildiz in the 9th round was pretty difficult as well, and I was on the verge of defeat in it."

Below you'll find another small selection of games. The last three GPs will be held in Jermuk, Armenia (23 June-6 July 2010), Ulanbaatar, Mongolia (29 July-12 August 2010) and Santiago, Chile (27 October-9 November 2010). Today the last of six men's Grand Prixs started in Astrakhan, Russia.

Women Grand Prix Nalchik 2010 | Round 11 (Final) Standings
Women Grand Prix Nalchik 2010 | Round 11 (Final) Standings


Selection of games rounds 9-11



Game viewer by ChessTempo


A happy Kosintseva at the press conference...

A happy Kosintseva at the press conference...



...and happily wearing a traditional Kabardian dress later on

...wearing a traditional Kabardian dress at the closing ceremony



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Hou Yifan, who turned 16 in February, finished on clear second place. After the last round she said: 'It’s impossible always to be number one. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. I just try to play well instead of worrying too much about the overall result.'



Photos © Ilya Akhobekov & Eldar Mukhametov, more here



Update: GP standings after three events, thanks to ebutaljib Women Grand Prix Standings

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