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Lopota GP: Hou Yifan Closing in on Polgar

Lopota GP: Hou Yifan Closing in on Polgar

PeterDoggers
| 43 | Chess Event Coverage

Once again Hou Yifan is in a class of her own in a women's event. The 20-year-old Chinese grandmaster is 1.5 points ahead in Lopota, Georgia with three rounds to go. And, with a live rating of 2646.5, she is only 29.6 Elo points behind Judit Polgar on the women's rating list!

She is doing it again. Hou Yifan, the reigning Women's World Champion, won the Khanty-Mansiysk Grand Prix in April with 8.5/11 and a 2695 performance and now, in Lopota, Georgia she is again 1.5 points ahead of the field (good for a 2846 performance), with three rounds to go. On Saturday, the second and final rest day of the tournament, her last three opponents (Anna Muzychuk, Elina Danielian and Alexandra Kosteniuk) might want to have a good think about how to stop the Chinese lady.

We left the tournament after four rounds, when Hou Yifan topped the standings with 3.5 points. After enjoying an excursion to a winery on Monday, play proceeded on Tuesday with the fifth round. And the tournament leader continued winning, “reiterating the breathtaking pace from Khanty Mansyisk, as Alina l'Ami aptly described it.


A quick loss for Antoaneta Stefanova

Ju Wenjun and Nana Dzagnize remained only half a point behind the leader as they both won their games, against Zhao Xue and Humpy Koneru respectively. The next day only Dzagnidze could keep the pace with Hou Yifan, who won against one of her compatriots in quite an irregular Sicilian:


Deep concentration couldn't save Ju Wenjun

Dzagnidze played a good game against Zhao:


Nana Dzagnidze won as well

And so, with half a point difference, Hou Yifan and Dzagnidze faced each other on Thursday. It was the longest game of the round, and in the end it was again the Chinese who scored the full point, increading her lead to 1.5 points. It was all decided in the endgame.


The top encounter Hou vs Dzagnidze: another win for the world champ

Today, with four draws and Stefanova beating Muminova, the standings didn't change much. Hou Yifan kept her 1.5 point lead, and with a few more wins she will get dangerously close to Judit Polgar on the next rating list!


Lopota GP 2014 | Round 8 Standings

# Name Rtg Perf 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 Pts SB
1 Hou,Yifan 2629 2846 phpfCo1l0.png 1 1 ½ ½ 1 1 1 1 7.0/8
2 Ju,Wenjun 2532 2651 0 phpfCo1l0.png ½ ½ 1 1 1 1 ½ 5.5/8 17.25
3 Dzagnidze,Nana 2541 2656 0 ½ phpfCo1l0.png 1 ½ ½ 1 1 1 5.5/8 15.25
4 Muzychuk,Anna 2561 2586 phpfCo1l0.png ½ 0 ½ ½ 1 ½ 1 1 5.0/8
5 Koneru,Humpy 2613 2585 ½ ½ 0 ½ phpfCo1l0.png 1 1 ½ ½ 4.5/8 20.00
6 Danielian,Elina 2460 2544 0 ½ 1 phpfCo1l0.png ½ ½ ½ ½ 1 4.5/8 15.00
7 Harika,Dronavalli 2503 2566 ½ ½ 0 ½ phpfCo1l0.png 1 ½ ½ 1 4.5/8 14.00
8 Stefanova,Antoaneta 2488 2524 0 0 ½ 0 ½ phpfCo1l0.png 1 1 1 4.0/8
9 Kosteniuk,Alexandra 2532 2459 ½ 0 ½ ½ 0 0 phpfCo1l0.png 1 1 3.5/8
10 Zhao,Xue 2538 2358 0 0 0 ½ ½ ½ 0 phpfCo1l0.png ½ 2.0/8
11 Khotenashvili,Bela 2518 2283 0 0 0 0 ½ ½ 0 ½ phpfCo1l0.png 1.5/8
12 Muminova,Nafisa 2332 2061 0 ½ 0 0 0 0 0 0 phpfCo1l0.png 0.5/8


The Women Grand Prix takes place 19 June - 1 July in Lopota, Georgia with rest days on 23 & 28 June. Thanks to press officer in Lopota, Alina l'Ami. All photos courtesy of the official website | Games via TWIC phpfCo1l0.png


PeterDoggers
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.

Peter has a Master of Arts degree in Dutch Language & Literature. He briefly worked at New in Chess, then as a Dutch teacher and then in a project for improving safety and security in Amsterdam schools.

Between 2007 and 2013 Peter was running ChessVibes, a major source for chess news and videos acquired by Chess.com in October 2013.

As our Director News & Events, Peter writes many of our news reports. In the summer of 2022, The Guardian’s Leonard Barden described him as “widely regarded as the world’s best chess journalist.”

In October, Peter's first book The Chess Revolution will be published!


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