Thirteen players on 3/3 in Rijeka

| 0 | Chess Event Coverage
Thirteen players on 3/3 in RijekaNaiditsch, Vallejo, Jobava, Pelletier, Timofeev, Martinovic, Skoberne, Krasenkow, Inarkiev, Nisipeanu, Efimenko, Maiorov and Nepomniachtchi are the names of the thirteen players who are still on 100% in Rijeka. Three rounds at the European Individual Championship have been played.

The 11th European Individual Men and Women's Chess Championship is held from 5th to 19th of March 2010 in Rijeka, in new Zamet Centre sports hall. The event is organized by chess club "Rijeka", in agreement with the Croatian Chess Federation under the auspices of the City of Rijeka and the European Chess Union. It is open to all players representing the chess federations which comprise the European Chess Union (FIDE zones 1.1 to 1.9) regardless of their title or rating. There is also no limit of participants per federation.

The championship is based on Swiss system in accordance with the ECU Tournament Rules and FIDE Rules of Chess. The rate of play is 90 minutes for 40 moves plus 30 minutes for the rest of the game with an increment of 30 seconds per move, starting from move one. As always, the European Championship is a qualification event for the next World Cup. According to FIDE regulations and the decision of the ECU Board, 22 players will qualify.

Rounds 1-3

Top seed Zoltan Almasi started with a draw with Black against Italian GM Lexy Ortega. In this first round, played on Saturday, Russian top GMs Alexander Motylev and Evgeny Tomashevsky, the reigning European Champion, also started with draws. The biggest upsets were IM Artem Smirnov beating GM Evgeniy Najer, IM Pavel Potapov beating Viktor Laznicka, FM Burak Firat beating GM Konstantin Sakaev and FM Danny Raznikov beating GM Zaven Andriasian. On one of the lowest boards, Dutch GM Friso Nijboer was held to a draw by Denis Kadric (2171).

The second round saw two draws on the top boards, in Stefansson-Bacrot and Movsesian-Ragger. Moldav top GM Viktor Bologan lost to Bulgarian GM Valentin Iotov and GM Avetik Grigoryan defeated GM Kiril Georgiev. Ivan Cheparinov, long-time team member of Veselin Topalov, lost to Spanish GM Josep Manuel Lopez Martinez, but another Bulgarian of the same generation did better: IM Momchil Nikolov defeated GM Boris Savchenko. FM Hamitevici Vladimir managed to beat GM Mateusz Bartel in this round.

Round 3 was played on International Women's Day, and all the women playing in the tournament received a rose "as a small sign of appreciation to all women players and all the ladies participating in the organization of this big sporting event".

Dutch ladies

Dutch ladies Lisa Schut, Anne Haast and Arlette van Weersel, with roses at the chess boards

In the women's section there are four leaders with a perfect score after three rounds: Tatiana Kosintseva (RUS), who is the only survivor from the ten best rated players, Monica Socko (POL), Ketevan Arakhamia-Grant (SCO) and Irina Chelushkina (SRB).

Back to the men. After three rounds there are still 13 players with a 100% score. Among them are the two young international masters Sasa Martinovic (CRO) and Jure Skoberne (SLO) who in round 3 defeated GMs Vorobiov and Howell respectively. David Navara, these days boasting a 2708 rating, lost to Yannick Pelletier yesterday. Cheparinov went down again, this time against IM Artem Smirnov. IM Pavel Povatov and FM Burak Firat had more successes: the former defeated GM Tomi Nyback, the latter beat GM Gregorz Gajewski.

Today's round will see some interesting encounters: Vallejo Pons-Timofeev, Krasenkow-Jobava, Naiditsch-Efimenko, Pelletier-Inarkiev, Skoberne-Nisipeanu, Nepomniashtchi-Maiorov and Adams-Martinovic. In the women's section there are two clashes at the top: Arakhamia-T.Kosintseva and Socko-Chelushkina.

European Championship 2010 | Round 3 Standings (top 40)
European Championship 2010 | Round 3 Standings
Full standings here

A nice curiosity about the European Individual Men and Women's Chess Championship in Rijeka

For the first time, there will be a 'priest' to represent - unofficially - the State of Vaticano. Unofficially because Vaticano is not (yet) affiliated to FIDE. The name of the priest who will partecipate to the European Championship is Don Valerio Piro, from Neapolis; he got the formal authorization from Cardinal Sepe (note that Cardinal is more than Bishop; the Cardinal reports directly to the Pope). Don Valerio is candidate-master for the Italian Chess Federation. Officially he is registered as Italy, but he will play with the flag of Vaticano. This is the first partecipation of a representative of the little State that is not afffiliated to FIDE. But only for the moment, as there are many priest that are good chessplayer. Historically, the first (important) was Ruy Lopez - the inventor of the famous opening. The last one is William Lombardy, assistant of Bobby Fischer. There is the idea to organize a championship for 'ecclesiastics' (priests, friars, monks, nuns), then there will be the possibility to create a Chess Federation of the state of Vaticano. So may be that it will be possible to see a team fom Vaticano also in the Olympiads. The news had a good interest in the Italian newspapers and press agency. Please find enclosed the links (sorry, but the articles are in Italian!). Please note that the most important 'catholic' newspaper, Avvenire, dedicated a complete page to the news. Thanks and best regards! Adolivio Capece

Selection of games rounds 1-3

Game viewer by ChessTempo

Zamet Centre

The venue is the Zamet Centre (16,830 m2), which hosts various facilities: a sports hall with max 2,380 seats, local community offices, a library, 13 retail and service spaces and a garage with 250 parking spaces.


These days the sports hall is occupied with tables, seats and chess sets...

Venue: full

...and hundreds of chess players


Croatian chess fans watching the games from the side

Vallejo and Adams

Vallejo Pons, from Linares to Rijeka, with Michael Adams next to him


Local hero GM Marin Bosiocic (r.), here against GM Ernesto Inarkiev, has many fans


Top seed GM Antoaneta Stefanova (l.), here against WGM Sopiko Guramishvili


Second seeded is IM Nadezhda Kosintseva, but another favourite...

Tatiana her sister Tatiana, two times European Champion already

Photos courtesy of the official website, more here


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