Olympiad: Russia and Ukraine win again

| 0 | Chess Event Coverage
OlympiadDespite Vassily Ivanchuk's first loss in Khanty-Mansiysk, against Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, Ukraine beat Azerbaijan to remain the sole leader at the Olympiad. Russia and France follow with a point less and two rounds to go. After another win the Russian ladies are close to gold.

General info

The 39th Chess Olympiad takes place September 20th – October 3rd at the Tennis Sport Development Center in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia. 148 teams (735 players) in the Open section and 114 teams (559 players) in the Women section participate in the biannual event.

Each team consists four players and one reserve. The rate of play is 90 minutes for 40 moves and then 30 minutes to finish the game, with 30 seconds increment from move one.

Results round 9 | Open section | top 20 boards

Olympiad 2010 | Open section | Round 9 Standings (top 20)
Olympiad 2010 | Open section | Round 9 Standings

Results round 9 | Women section | top 10 boards

Olympiad 2010 | Women section | Round 9 Standings (top 20)
Olympiad 2010 | Open section | Round 9 Standings

Complete results and standings can be found here

Round 9 report

The struggle in the open section of the Olympiad became tenser – all six matches in the leading group ended in +1 victories. The leaders, Ukraine, defeated Azerbaijan and maintained first place. Vassily Ivanchuk lost to Shakhriyar Mamedyarov in an instructive Benoni.

Mamedyarov-Ivanchuk Khanty-Mansiysk OL 2010 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 c5 4. d5 d6 5. Nc3 exd5 6. cxd5 g6 7. Nd2 Bg7 8. e4 O-O 9. Be2 Na6 10. O-O Re8 11. f3 Nc7 12. a4 Nd7 13. Kh1 b6 14. Ra3 Qe7 Olympiad 15. a5N 15. Nb5 Nxb5 16. Bxb5 Rd8 17. a5 a6!? was Kramnik-Topalov, Dortmund 2001. 15... Bb7 16. Nb5 Nf6?! Better seems 16... Nxb5 17. Bxb5 Red8 (17... a6!?) like in Kramnik-Topalov, as with the queen on e7 Black can answer 18. Nc4 with 18... Ne5. 17. Nxc7 Qxc7 18. Bb5 Reb8 Now Black is too late for 18... Red8 19. Nc4 Nd7 20. Bf4 Ne5 because with the queen on c7 this allows White to create a protected passed pawn. 19. Nc4 bxa5 20. Bf4! Bf8 Olympiad 21. e5! As so often in the Benoni, the central pawn break gives White a clear advantage. See the game viewer for the rest of the game.

Ponomariov and Radjabov drew in a Dragon where White went for the move 9.g4 that was popular in the early eighties. That made 1.5 points for Azerbaijan, but Ivanchuk's team mates Pavel Eljanov and Zakhar Efimenko avenged him by beating Rauf Mamedov and Eltaj Safarli.

One point behind the leader are Russia 1 and France. The Russians won their match against the defending champions – Armenia. Peter Svidler had played quite a few draws so far, but yesterday he decided the match in his beloved Grünfeld.

Sargissian-Svidler Khanty-Mansiysk OL 2010 Olympiad 26. Bd6? White had to play 26. Bb6 Bf8 27. d6 26... Ne3! Suddenly White's position was beyond repair.


Kramnik and Aronian drew a quiet game

Even without Etienne Bacrot the French team is doing great so far - we repeat once more that they are still unbeaten. Like in the eighth round, their hero was Sebastien Feller.

Feller-Gelashvili Khanty-Mansiysk OL 2010 Olympiad A position from the Dragadorf main line in which White's Kb1 and Nc1 was a new plan. 19... d5?! Not possible here. 20. exd5 Bxd5 Taking with the knight eventually drops the h-pawn. 21. Re2! Re8 22. Nd3 e4 23. Rde1 Bxb3?! 24. cxb3 Rxd3 25. Nxe4 Olympiad At first sight you wouldn't say so, but Black is completely lost here. 25... Qd8 26. Qc1+ Kb8 27. Qf4+ Ka8 28. Qxf6 Rd1+ 29. Rxd1 Qxd1+ 30. Ka2 Qxe2 31. Qc6+ 1-0


Jobava vs Vachier-Lagrave

Israel defeated Hungary thanks to Ilya Smirin who beat Judit Polgar with the black pieces.

In the Bulgaria-USA match Nakamura used Anand's QGD Lasker Defence to draw with Topalov. Kamsky was the only winner - he managed to catch Cheparinov's queen.

Kamsky-Cheparinov Khanty-Mansiysk OL 2010 Olympiad 18. Nf4! exf4? After 18... O-O 19. Ne2 Qb2 20. Rb1 Qa2 there's no way to catch the queen, it seems. 19. Bd4 Qb4 20. Ra4! and White won after 63 moves.

In the 10th round Ukraine plays against France. Other important matches are China-Russia 1, USA-Israel, Spain-Georgia, Serbia-Poland and Czech Republic-Armenia.

The Russian women team won their 9th match in a row. With just two rounds to go they are four points ahead of the rest of the field, and nobody seems to doubt their overall victory. In the 9th round they were a bit lucky as with a score of 1.5-1.5 against Serbia, Nadezhda Kosintseva had a bad position. However, after five hours of play she not only managed to survive, but even won the game.

Chelushkina-Kosintseva Khanty-Mansiysk OL 2010 Olympiad 33. Qe3? 33. Qd4 Qxd4 34. Rxd4 Bxe1 35. exf6 +- 33... Bxd5 34. Rxd5 Bxe1 35. Qxe1 a3 Olympiad 36. Qc3? Oops. 36... a2+? Double oops. 36... Qg1+ 37. Ka2 axb2 is curtains. 37. Ka1 Qg1+ 38. Kxa2 Ra6+ 39. Ra5 Rxa5+ 40. Qxa5 Qxg4 41. Nd6 and in this ending at some point White blundered a number of pawns.

The main medal contenders also won their matches: Georgia defeated Russia 2 with a minimal margin, and China won 3-1 against Hungary. Ukraine crushed Croatia 3.5-0.5. Russia has 18/9 and five teams have 14 points: China, Ukraine, Georgia, India, and Bulgaria.

Selection of games

Game viewer by ChessTempo

Photos courtesy of FIDE, more at the official site

Chess Olympiad & FIDE Congress 2010 | Schedule
Chess Olympiad & FIDE Congress 2010 | Schedule


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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 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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