Tiviakov beats Polgar, grabs lead in Hoogeveen

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Univé Chess TournamentAfter Anish Giri and Vassily Ivanchuk also drew their second encounter quickly, it was Sergei Tiviakov who finally won a game in Hoogeveen. In the fourth round he beat Judit Polgar and grabbed the lead with 2.5/4.

The 17th Univé Chess Tournament, formerly known as Essent Tournament but sponsored by insurance company Univé this year, takes place October 16-24 in Hoogeveen, The Netherlands. As always the Crown Group is a 4-player, double round-robin with this year Vassily Ivanchuk (2756), Judit Polgar (2687), Sergei Tiviakov (2670) and Anish Giri (2552) playing for a € 10,000 prize fund. The time control is 40 moves in 1.5 hours + 30 minutes to finish the game, with 30 seconds increment from the start.

Round 4

Although yours truly had originally planned to stay just two days in Hoogeveen, the local gezelligheid has kept me here so far. Many participants of the open group are staying in a bungalow park in Echten, about 9 km from Hoogeveen, where they play soccer and blitz every night before the inevitable laptops come out. Especally GM Jesse Kraai, who by the way has a PhD in philosophy, is a dangerous opponent on the soccer pitch, thanks to his American interpretation of football...

I'm joining a group in one of the bungalows and it's still hard to get used to all these teenagers sitting next to each other on a couch with a laptop, analyzing their game with Rybka or preparing for tomorrow's opponent. But that's chess anno 2009!

To start with the open group: despite decades of experience with the Closed Ruy Lopez, Oleg Romanishin couldn't reach equality against Friso Nijboer in today's round 7, and although the former world's number 11 got away with a bad ending, eventually the point went to the Dutch grandmaster. He was joined in the lead by English grandmaster Stewart Haslinger, who also played strongly in Hoogeveen last year, finishing shared first with Alexandr Fier and... Friso Nijboer.

After the traditional rest day on Wednesday, including the equally traditional dinner with the sponsors, the participants of the Crown Group today returned to the Hoogeveen town hall for the 4th round. In their return match Ivanchuk and Giri drew about as quickly as their first encounter on Sunday. The Ukrainian tried the Slav Exchange and you might think the story ends there, but no, a few moves after they left theory, the board was on fire.

Giri's 16...c5!? was a bold move that seemed to be asking for trouble, but at the board Ivanchuk couldn't find the refutation. Afterwards he mentioned 18.b3 Rc8 and now 19.Rb1!, a move he missed, as interesting. At the moment of writing Anish started a new blitz session with Michail Brodsky in the press room, and at the same time he's discussing openings with IM Merijn van Delft and making jokes with others. He's quickly becoming part of the Dutch chess scene, and at the same time part of a group that's called "very strong grandmasters".

Univé Chess Tournament

Giri and Ivanchuk going through their game in the press room



Sergei Tiviakov was the one to break the series of draws in the Crown Group by beating Judit Polgar. As always he started quietly, and objectively speaking there was nothing wrong with Black's position but Polgar simply missed the tactic 29.Nd3 followed by e4-e5 today. In itself this wasn't so bad, but then she missed that after 29...Ree8 30.e5 Black has 30...Ng4! which is not clear at all. Instead Polgar gave an exchange, but according to Tiviakov the ending must always be winning for White due to the protected passed pawn. In a video interview that will be published later, the Dutch GM will tell some more about the game.

Univé Chess Tournament

1.e4: Tiviakov beats Polgar and grabs the lead



Univé Chess Tournament 2009 | Crown Group | Round 4 Standings
Univé Chess Tournament 2009
Univé Chess Tournament 2009 | Crown Group | Schedule & Results
Univé Chess Tournament 2009


Game viewer



Game viewer by ChessTempo


Univé Chess Tournament

We finally have a leader and his name is Tiviakov



Univé Chess Tournament

A moment of lack of concentration was fatal for Judit Polgar



Univé Chess Tournament

Tiviakov's score sheet



Univé Chess Tournament

Four draws for Vassily Ivanchuk...



Univé Chess Tournament

...and Anish Giri



Univé Chess Tournament

Two chess lovers of different generations: Giri and Ivanchuk trying to solve a mate-in-three problem



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