Russia 1 & 2 lose in round 5 Olympiad

| 0 | Chess Event Coverage
OlympiadSaturday was a bad day for Russia at the Olympiad in Khanty-Mansiysk. The top team played without Vladimir Kramnik and lost 2.5-1.5 to Hungary - Peter Leko beat Alexander Grischuk on board one. With the same score Russia 2 went down against Armenia.

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.

For the results and standings we have to refer to the results page of the official site this time as the Chess-Results site has been down all morning.

Round 5 report

After five rounds only three teams managed to keep the pace and scored the maximum number of points – Armenia, Georgia, and Hungary. The Netherlands and Ukraine are one point behind, and ten teams have eight points.

The fifth round was unsuccessful for the first two Russian teams: both lost their matches with a minimal margin. Russia 1, the main favorite of the tournament, lost to Hungary. The Russians played without their leader, former world champion Vladimir Kramnik, and it didn’t work out: three games were drawn, and Alexander Grischuk lost to Peter Leko on board one. The Hungarian has been struggling to find his form this year, but this endgame was superb.

The defending champions from Armenia defeated Russia 2. This match was decided on board four where Arman Pashikian outplayed Artyom Timofeev with Black in a Berlin Wall. The most spectacular game of this match was the following.

Alekseev-Akopian Khanty-Mansiysk OL 2010 Olympiad The Armenian comes with a Petrosian-like exchange sac: 21...Rd4!? 22. Ne2 fxe4 23. Nxd4 exd4 24. Bxd4 Nf4 25. Qe3 Olympiad 25...Nxg2!? 26. Kxg2 Rf3 27. Qe2 e3 28. Qxf3 Bxf3+ 29. Kxf3 exf2 30. Bxf2 Bxb2 31. Rc2 Qc6+ 32. Ke3 Bf6 and eventually the game ended in a draw.


Armenia-Russia 2 with Aronian-Nepomniachtchi on board one

The young Vietnamese team was doing great so far, but yesterday the were beaten severely by the Georgian team, which might well become this Olympiad's big surprise. Baadur Jobava played another strong game, against Le Quang Liem.

Le-Jobava Khanty-Mansiysk OL 2010 Olympiad Training exercise: Black to play and win. 39... Rd8!! 40. Qxb4 Rxf2 41. Rxf2 Rd1+ 42. Kg2 Qa8+ 43. Rf3 Rd3 44. Qb8+ Qxb8 45. Rxd3 Qb4 0-1


L-R Georgians Mikheil Mchedlishvili, Merab Gagunashvili and Baadur Jobava

Poland and The Netherlands scored 2-2 and thus both kept their unbeaten status. Board one saw a win for Wojtaszek against Van Wely while Anish Giri further improved his score to 4.5/5 against Mateusz Bartel on four. Ukraine beat Bosnia & Hercegovina 3-1; Vassily Ivanchuk played again and made an end to Ivan Sokolov's winning streak, while reaching 4/4 himself. The Volga/Benkö might have lost its popularity, but as we all know, Chuky plays everything and Sokolov's 4.Qc2 wasn't the most critical choice. Especially when you drop a pawn at move seven.

Sokolov-Ivanchuk Khanty-Mansiysk OL 2010 1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 c5 3. d5 b5 4. Qc2 bxc4 5. e4 d6 6. Bxc4 g6 Olympiad 7. b3?? Nxe4 8. Bb2 Qa5+ 9. Kf1 Nf6 and Black won.

Azerbaijan scored 'only' 2.5-1.5 against Sweden as Nils Grandelius beat Eltaj Safarli in an attractive game (see the game viewer). The Czech Republic crushed Mexico 4-0 and China dropped another match point with four draws against Slovakia.


The so far slightly disappointing Chinese team with L-R Wang Yue, Wang Hao, Bu Xiangzhi and Zhou Jianchao, but wait, let's zoom in...


...what's Lubomir Ftacnik doing with that cool little eReader? Checking on a manuscript for a new opening book perhaps? Time to press 'off'' now...

More irregular openings could be seen this round, with a solid victory for Magnus Carlsen in a Closed Sicilian against Paco Vallejo - a tribute to Boris Spassky perhaps? Another one was Short-Fressinet, the highest rated game ever for the Max Lange Attack. Just for nostalgia yours truly grabbed his copy of (the not very good) An Opening Repertoire for the Attacking Player by Raymond Keene and David Levy from 1987 which served me well in the years 1990-1992 when I started playing chess.

Short-Fressinet Khanty-Mansiysk OL 2010 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Bc5 4. O-O Nf6 5. d4 exd4 6. e5 d5 7. exf6 dxc4 8. fxg7!? (The main line is still 8. Re1+ Be6 9. Ng5 Qd5 10. Nc3 Qf5 11. Nce4) 8... Rg8 9. Bg5!? Olympiad For a while Fressinet defended well, but after two inaccurate moves he was lost.
Don't miss the game in the game viewer.

The key match of the fifth round in the women section was played between Russia 1 and China. The Russians prevailed with the score 2.5-1.5 – Nadezhda Kosintseva and Valentina Gunina won their games, while Alexandra Kosteniuk lost to Zhao Xue. Russia 1 and Ukraine are leading the standings and will meet on Monday as today is a restday.

Photos courtesy of FIDE, more at the official site

Selection of games

Game viewer by ChessTempo

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


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