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CHESS

Magnus Carlsen wins blitz championship

November 29, 2009|By Jack Peters

Position No. 6083: White to play and win. From the game Leonardo Tristan-Rinat Jumabayev, World Junior Championship, Puerto Madryn 2009.

Solution to Position No. 6082: White gains a piece by 1 h7! Rg7 2 Rxg2 Rxg2 3 Be4.

The World Blitz Championship in Moscow assembled 22 leading grandmasters for a three-day extravaganza of speed chess. Each player had three minutes, plus a bonus of two seconds per move, to complete a game. This time limit has supplanted five minute games as the standard for blitz.

Norwegian prodigy Magnus Carlsen, who turns 19 Monday, won with a fantastic score of 31-11. That's 28 wins, eight losses and only six draws.

World champion Viswanathan Anand of India, two weeks shy of age 40, continues to excel at a young man's game. He finished second with 28-14.

Sergey Karjakin, who recently moved from Ukraine to Russia, was third at 25-17. Former world champion Vladimir Kramnik of Russia, the winner of the preceding Tal Memorial, settled for fourth place at 24 1/2 -17 1/2 .

Carlsen cemented his victory with impressive 2-0 sweeps against Anand, Karjakin and Kramnik.

Former world champion Anatoly Karpov of Russia, by far the oldest player at age 58, was among the first-day leaders with a score of 9-5, including a win over Carlsen. He ended in 16th place at 19-23, still a fine performance for the second-lowest-rated competitor.

World Cup

The 128-player World Cup began Nov. 21 in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia. The winner of the $1.28-million tournament will earn $96,000 and a spot in the eight-player event that will determine the challenger in the 2011 world championship.

The U.S. was over-represented by 10 players, more than any country except Russia. Former U.S. champions Gata Kamsky of New York and Alexander Onischuk of Virginia duly dispatched lower-rated opponents, 1 1/2 -0 1/2 , in the first round of matches. However, the other eight Americans were underdogs, and only two registered upsets. Varuzhan Akobian of North Hollywood won the longest match, 9-7, after a series of rapid and blitz games, while Alexander Shabalov of Pittsburgh needed "only" eight games.

The tournament continues through Dec. 15.

Local news

The American Open concludes today at the Renaissance Hotel, 9620 Airport Blvd. in Los Angeles. Spectators may watch the games, see chess videos and listen to chess lectures, all for free.

Grandmaster Melikset Khachiyan took first prize in the Harold Cardinal Valery G/60 tournament at the Los Angeles Chess Club, winning five games against his closest rivals after drawing Willis Kim in the first round. Ryan Porter was second at 4 1/2 -1 1/2 , followed by former state champion Alexandre Kretchetov at 4-2. Michael Goliszek, Mitch Jayson and top Class B Joshua Sheng shared first place in the under-1800 section of the 28-player event.

The AAA Chess Club plans its Winter Scholastic on Saturday at First Lutheran Church, 1300 E. Colorado Blvd. in Glendale. There will be separate sections for students in grades K-3, K-7, and K-12. For all the details, call Nshan Keshishian at (323) 578-8424.

Chess for Success International will conduct its fifth annual scholastic tournament next Sunday morning at John Thomas Dye School, 11414 Chalon Road in Los Angeles. Call Ivona Jezierska at (310) 740-0063 for more information.

Neil Hultgren and Larry Stevens scored 4-1 to share first place in the 50-player Crown City Open at the Pasadena Chess Club. The club will begin a three-round tournament at 6:45 p.m. Friday in the Boys and Girls Club, 3230 E. Delmar Ave. in Pasadena. Call Hultgren at (818) 243-3089 for information.

The Exposition Park Chess Club's free monthly tournament takes place at 1 p.m. Sunday in the public library, 3900 S. Western Ave. in Los Angeles.

The best game prize at the recent La Palma Chess Club Championship was awarded to Richard Yang for his victory over Eren Karadayi.

Today's games

GM Magnus Carlsen (Norway)-GM Evgeny Bareev (Russia), World Blitz Championship, Moscow 2009: 1 e4 c6 2 d4 d5 3 e5 The Advance variation against the Caro-Kann Defense. Bf5 4 Be3 e6 5 Nd2 Nd7 6 Ngf3 f6!? Often Black prefers to strike at d4 by 6 . . . Ne7 and eventually . . . c6-c5. 7 Be2 Ne7 8 0-0 Qc7 Welcoming 9 exf6 gxf6 10 c4 0-0-0. 9 c4!? fxe5 10 dxe5 Nxe5 11 Nxe5 Qxe5 12 Nf3 Qd6 13 Qb3 White has ample compensation because of Black's lagging development. b6 14 Rac1 Bg4?! 15 cxd5 exd5 16 Rfe1 Also strong is 16 Qa4 Bd7 17 Bxb6, recovering the pawn. Bxf3 Ineffective, but 16 . . . c5 17 Bg5 Kf7 lets White attack with 18 Bxe7 Bxe7 19 Ne5+! Qxe5 20 Bxg4 Qg5 21 Be6+. 17 Bxf3 0-0-0 18 Bxb6! axb6 19 Qxb6 h6? Useless. However, the tougher 19 . . . Qc7 won't save Black after 20 Bg4+ Rd7 21 Qa6+ Kd8 22 Bxd7 Qxd7 23 Rc3!, intending Rc3-e3 or Rc3-b3-b7. 20 Rxe7! Bxe7 21 Rxc6+? Good enough, but 21 Bg4+ Rd7 22 Rxc6+ is deadly. Kd7 22 Rxd6+ Bxd6 23 Bxd5 Rc8 24 g3 h5 25 Qb5+ Kd8 26 Bc6, Black Resigns.

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