Rapport Attacks Brilliantly As Bundesliga Gets Underway
Richard Rapport (left) in an earlier game vs. Alexander Donchenko. Photo: Christian Bossert/Schachbundesliga.

Rapport Attacks Brilliantly As Bundesliga Gets Underway

| 19 | Chess Event Coverage

It's been a while since we heard the name of GM Richard Rapport, but today the Hungarian grandmaster reminded the chess world of his creative talent in a wonderful attacking game. It was played in the Bundesliga which is underway in Karlsruhe, Germany.

You can follow the games of the Bundesliga here as part of our live portal.

The German Team Championship (Bundesliga) was one of many events that ended prematurely during the start of the coronavirus pandemic earlier this year. For eight playing days, everything was OK, but everything got suspended starting from the March 15-16 weekend.

The season is now scheduled to be continued in the spring of 2021, and in the meantime, it was decided that the 2020 champion is going to be decided in an altogether different way this year.

On a voluntary basis, eight teams have agreed to play a single round-robin played over five days: one round on Wednesday, September 16, two on Thursday, September 17, one on Friday, September 18, two again on Saturday, September 19, and a final round on Sunday,  September 20.

Round 2 Standings

Rank Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 BP MP
1 OSG Baden-Baden . . . . . 7 13.5 4
2 SC Viernheim . . . . . 6 11.5 4
3 SG Solingen . . . . . 9 2
4 SV Werder Bremen . . 3 . . 7.5 2
5 Schachfreunde Deizisau . . 5 . . . 6.5 2
6 Aachener SV . . . . 4 . 6.5 1
7 SF Berlin 1903 . 2 . . . 4 . 6 1
8 FC Bayern München 1 . . . . . 3.5 0

In case you were wondering: yes, we're talking about over-the-board chess! It's the first time since the Candidates that top 10 players like GM Fabiano Caruana and GM Levon Aronian can be seen behind a normal, wooden board and pieces again. (The latter even combines it with playing his games in the online Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz in the evenings.)

The event is organized by the Baden-Baden Chess Center in cooperation with the Baden-Baden club and its sponsor, the GRENKE Group. It takes place in the Garden Hall of the Karlsruhe Exhibition Centre in compliance with all the requirements of the responsible health authorities.

As you can see in the video with impressions below (produced by the Grenke team), this includes a large distance between the tables and also, like we saw earlier this year in Biel, plexiglass in the middle of the board to protect the players. Some of them are wearing face masks as well.

We'll later return to this event but for now, let's look at that great win by Rapport today. Playing for the heavy favorite Baden-Baden, the Hungarian GM was Black against the Swiss grandmaster Noel Studer. In a Stonewall, he first sacrificed a knight and then a rook.

The fantastic 23...e5!! reminded of 20...g3 in the famous King's Indian game Piket-Kasparov, Tilburg 1989 where the 13th world champion also let his rook hanging on a8 with a pawn move.

The Bundesliga continues until Sunday. The time control is 90 minutes for 40 moves followed by 30 minutes for the rest of the game and a 30-second increment from move one. You can follow the games of the Bundesliga here as part of our live portal.

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